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POSTED: Friday, August 17, 2012, 10:18 AM

There may be Thunder over the Boardwalk planned in the real Atlantic City today, but in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, last night, on the HBO set for Boardwalk Empire, there was a heckuva fireball. BOOM. Looks like Season 3's gonna be a doozy. It begins Sept. 16. 

Amy Rosenberg @ 10:18 AM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Thursday, August 9, 2012, 8:40 AM

UPDATE: Nik Wallenda said he almost cancelled it when he saw how much sand was left on the wire, and he considered going barefoot, but in the end, he used the special wire shoes his mother made him. He made the trek safely, and without a net.This is Atlantic City after all, the town that embraces risk. Tens of thousands of people _ police are now estimating 100,000 _  lined the beach and Boardwalk, hushed at times and then cheering him and giving him thumbs up.

Wallenda returned the thumbs up, and actually spoke back to a few, and shouted at the Trop and Atlantic Club workers who were volunteering to hold the 40 sets of stabilizing wires to back up, so the ropes wouldn't hit him in the feet. A friend of NIk's said some of the  the volunteers were on cell phones. They said the wind was a bit of a factor, but the main issue was the sand, which caked onto the wire while it was lying on the beach the last few days. "I learne a lesson," Wallenda said. "I"ll be telling that story for awhile." Wallenda walked through the crowd and into the Tropicana like a returning hero. He said it was fun and exhilerating and peaceful. It was. "I looked out at the water, the crowd on the Boardwalk," he said. Michael Jordan, a resident of Atlantic City, called up to him, "Beautiful Nik, beautiful." And it was beautiful. Unexepectedly peaceful and intimate, even. Check out the twitter feed for a blow by blow and more photos. www.twitter.com/amysrosenberg

Amy S. Rosenberg @ 8:40 AM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Wednesday, July 18, 2012, 12:57 PM

OCEAN CITY N.J. – In the middle of another brutal heat wave, there are few places on Earth where dozens of people will go to order hot soup for lunch – in a restaurant without air conditioning, no less!

But I sometimes can be found among those on a hot summer noon happily slurping a cup of the Varsity Inn’s locally famous baked tomato soup.

What I sweat is whether they’ll sell out before I get my white bowl containing the delicious elixir topped with tasty croutons and a hint of melted cheese.

Jacqueline L. Urgo @ 12:57 PM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Wednesday, July 11, 2012, 12:14 PM

Lifeguard races are one of the great traditions at the Jersey Shore, with the guys competing throughout the summer, with longstanding rivalries and family dynasties to rival any sport you may have followed. The women's races don't attract the same crowds as the men's events (though there are women that compete in the men's events, paraticularly the swim), but they can be just as entertaining. Last night was the Longport Women's Invitational, and it featured a chance to see some of the area's best rowers - Mallory Sykes, whose Drexel boat won the Dad Vails - won the doubles row for the Atlantic City Beach Patrol with teammate Macey Miller - leaving the rest of the boats about an ocean away at the finish. It was a dominant performance, but Ocean City's Erin Curry's back to back wins in the swim and paddle board events resulted in a victory for the Ocean City Beach Patrol. Here's the full schedule from this Press of Atlantic City web page. Next up: the Cape May Point Women's Lifeguard Challenge tonight (Wednesday) at 6:30 p.m. at St. Pete's beach, Cape May Point, and on Friday, the Beschen-Callahn Memorials at 5:45 p.m. on the 15th Street beach in North Wildwood, and the  Chief Bill Kuhn Brigantine Invitational Races, 6 p.m. on the 16th Street beach, Brigantine

Here's video of the start of the paddle board event and the surf dash. Find more lifeguard photos at Rusty Silverman's lifeguardart.com and from photographer Michael Martin, who just published a book of photographs of past lifeguard races in New Jersey. 

Here's the start of the paddleboard event, in which the women paddle out around a course that is basically a box out in the ocean. This event was won by Erin Curry of Ocean City Beach Patrol won this event, right after she won the swim, without a break in between.

Below is the start of the surf dash event, a relay event in which the women race out into the surf to a post being dutifully held by a male lifeguard.

Amy S. Rosenberg @ 12:14 PM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Tuesday, July 10, 2012, 5:16 PM

You can't take it with you, I guess is the moral. There's been a lot of moving out of places people thought were forever going on in the last weeks, the Inquirer from the Inquirer building at Broad and Callowhill, the Archdiocese from the Archdiocese shore home for retired priests on Princeton Avenue in Ventnbor. In both cases, a lot had to be left behind. At the Inquirer building, I found some old pica rulers and a guide to reporters rights written for the Atlantic City Press, and a lot of New Jersey legislative guides, marked not to be removed - ever, it seems - from the copy desk. And there they shall remain.

Over on Princeton Avenue, where the mansion assessed at $6.2 million
has been emptied of its vacationing priests and will soon be listed for sale, assuming those old stories of restrictions on the sale were just stories (the deed reflects no restrictions), some books just had
to be left behind for the recycling bin. I still feel like the story of that house has yet to be totally unraveled, like why does the plaque on the door say that Anne Hogan donated the property when it was her sister, Hannah G. Hogan who sold the place to Cardinal Krol in 1963 for $100,000? The Hogan sisters are wrapped up in a lot of mystery from here to Palm Beach, and certainly amassed a lot of real estate, much of which they transferred or sold to the Catholic Church, which in turn made a good amount of money off them. There's also the part of the priest they knew as a child in Philadelphia who they kept in very good digs down in Florida and who apparently stashed away a lot of their money. Stay tuned for how much the Church gets for the Princeton Avenue property. In any case, walking my dog the other morning, recyling day, I saw the boxes left on the street and took a brief inventory, which is below the photo of the porch, where presumably some of that summer reading was done. 

Amy S. Rosenberg @ 5:16 PM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Sunday, July 1, 2012, 9:34 AM

Not your usual pre Fourth of July crowd on the Ventnor boardwalk, above. 

It's the morning after the morning after the freakish straight-line wind and lightning storm that knocked out power to most of Atlantic County and sparked a fire that, sadly, destroyed the lovely Church of the Redeemer in Longport.

Amy S. Rosenberg @ 9:34 AM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Monday, June 25, 2012, 7:56 AM

It was Metallica's turn to transform Bader Field and Atlantic City into a music festival venue this weekend, following last summer's Dave Matthews Band Caravan and last weekend's Phish takeover. Once again, good old Bader - an old municipal airport located just a short walk over the now-iconic Albany Avenue bridge from the Boardwalk - proved to be a fetching and roomy backdrop.

Metallica's Orion Music and More festival seemed to go off smoothly enough, with crowd estimates varying but mostly settling into the 22,500 the first day, fewer the second day. A little lower than predicted, and smaller than either Phish or the DMB Caravan last summer. Hopefully strong enough to keep the festivals coming. The rituals of a festival at Bader have their charms: walking over the Albany Avenue bridge before and after, when the ACPD close the span to cars and allow the amazed crowds to exit the venue on a street all their own. There was not as much singing on the bridge as during the DMB Caravan last summer, and I didn't see anybody sucking on nitrous oxygen tanks on the way down, but seeing all those happy campers fill the street from the Monument to the top of the bridge is a great sight and a happy end to a day of music.

Amy S. Rosenberg @ 7:56 AM  Permalink | 0 comments
POSTED: Monday, June 11, 2012, 2:01 PM

If you’re a foodie at the Shore this summer, this sounds like so much fun: The Viking Cooking School at Harrah’s Resort in Atlantic City is offering a star-studded summer lineup of cooking classes where you can learn tips and tricks and new recipes using the high performance Viking ranges.

“Atlantic City is quickly becoming a true culinary destination, with Harrah’s Resort helping to lead the charge,” said Chef Jack Whelan, executive chef at Harrah’s. “Viking Cooking School is really a playground for cooks, and epicureans will be delighted with our new summer classes and celebrity chef guest instructors.

Starting things off on June 29 will be the larger-than-life Sam “Sammy D” DeMarco, of the resort’s Sammy D’s Restaurant and Bar with a spicy demonstration called “Cocktails and Cravings: Keepin’ It Hot” that will feature how-to’s for some of his most popular appetizers, including cheesesteak dumplings and tasty pork eggrolls.

Jacqueline L. Urgo @ 2:01 PM  Permalink | 0 comments
About this blog

Inquirer staff writer Amy S. Rosenberg has covered Philly police, city neighborhoods, Ed Rendell as mayor, the Jersey shore, Atlantic City, Miss America and the psychology of Eagles fans. She moved to Ventnor on July 3, 1995, which makes her a local, but not really.

Inquirer Staff Writer Jacqueline L. Urgo has spent every summer of her life at the Jersey Shore, and has lived there year-round for nearly 30 years, even fulfilling one of her bucket list dreams by once living in a house by the sea.

Since 1990, she has covered the waterfront for The Inquirer — from the Atlantic to the Delaware Bay shore — and some of the mainland in between. Along the way, she amassed an encyclopedic knowledge of this tear-it-down-and-build-it-back-up region, delving into the history and the hype of a place with a lot of unexpected stories to tell.

Reach The Downashore at arosenberg@phillynews.com.

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