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Ocean Grove Post Office. Is it the JV, but it is no longer the varsity?   Blogfinger file photo ©

Ocean Grove Post Office. Is it the JV, because it is no longer the varsity? Blogfinger file photo ©

I’m wondering if anyone else in O.G. has had problems with mail delivery.  We have experienced issues on two different occasions in the past month and a half.  I know of someone else who has also had an issue.  Maybe someone has an idea where to go for answers – or satisfaction.

Phone calls and a trip to the Neptune post office just resulted in excuses.

Thank you,

F. Levine

O.G. letter carriers are now based in Neptune.  Pictured here is a drive-by delivery.   Blogfinger file photo ©

O.G. letter carriers are now based in Neptune. Pictured here is a drive-by delivery. Blogfinger file photo ©

SCATMAN CROTHERS:

 

Frank's 1406 Main Avenue near Sunset Avenue.  Blogfinger file photo

Frank’s 1406 Main Avenue near Sunset Avenue. Blogfinger file photo

 

 

Frank's Deli.  Late morning in October. All photos by Paul Goldfinger ©

Frank’s Deli.  Late morning in October. All photos by Paul Goldfinger ©

In July, 2013, I posted an article  (Blogfinger link  ) about my adventures on Main Street in Asbury Park   (Which, if it gets pinkified this year, should be called  Rasbury Park.)  Here is a quote from that piece:

“You might also be tempted to turn into Frank’s Restaurant where everybody goes for  breakfast including cops, contractors, politicians,  bloggers, realtors, homeboys, wayward Grovers and stylish types from across the border on Cookman Avenue.”

UPS man waits for his sub delivery. Blogfinger photo ©

UPS man waits for his sub delivery. Blogfinger photo ©

I’m sure most of you are familiar with Frank’s, a local family-owned place where they have been cooking breakfast and lunch since 1960. It has a very down-home feel.  You can sit at a table or at the counter where you can watch the chefs work—poetry in motion.  “Those fries are getting cold; dump them and serve some hot ones.”  The cook at the grill is a perfectionist. He watches his little assembly line and he doesn’t miss a detail.  He turns around to the counter and asks us if everything is OK.

Grillmaster efficient and accurate

Grillmaster efficient and accurate

The waitresses are attentive. They seem to know everybody and they are friendly and accommodating—-not like the diner waitress who waited on Jack Nicholson in Five Easy Pieces.

Joe Maggio is the owner and the main-man at the grill. His father started the business.   We go there often, but he was on vacation this time. However, his staff wasn’t missing a beat. One of the cooks noticed an elderly man near the end of the counter. He called him by name and said, “How about a grilled cheese; I’ll make you one now.” The man grinned and said, “Thanks.”

Everything at Franks is fresh and made-to-order.  BF photo

Everything at Frank’s is fresh and made-to-order. The toast was ordered that way.   BF photo   ©

You can walk up to the deli counter and order a superb sub. made to order. Even Bruce Springsteen visits Frank’s, and he included Frank’s in a 2012 music video.  Bruce  likes the turkey club.

We get a kick out of the people who are going in and out of Frank’s. They are all kinds and remind me of some places my friends and I frequented when we were in high school in Rutherford. We would go to towns like Lyndhurst or Passaic to get soul food:  pizza and burgers.

At night, after walking up and down Park Avenue, we would visit Stio’s, a family luncheonette and ice cream place near the tracks that was so old, everyone and everything there seemed to be in slow motion. But all sorts of characters would show up, and we would laugh and joke and kid the owners.  Frank’s takes me back to that sort of Jersey place.  If you are from Jersey, you need a dose of that every once in a while.

MARIA MULDAUR

Ocean Township. October 28, 2012. 8:37 am.  By Paul Goldfinger ©

Ocean Township. October 28, 2012. 8:37 am. By Paul Goldfinger ©  Click to enlarge this peaceful autumn day.

JIM BRYANT    Original soundtrack of West Side Story

August, 2014.  By Paul Goldfinger from the NYC Street Series ©

August, 2014. By Paul Goldfinger from the NYC Street Series ©  Click to enlarge. 

HOT CHELLE RAE   “Downtown Girl.”

No ugly ducklings here.   Paul Goldfinger photo ©

No ugly ducklings here. Paul Goldfinger photo ©

BAND OF HM ROYAL MARINES:   “Colonel Bogey”  Bridge Over the River Kwai

Ocean Grove. Photograph by Paul Goldfinger ©

Ocean Grove. Photograph by Paul Goldfinger ©

BELA KOVACS    Clarinet Concerto in A Major–Adagio.  by Mozart.  From the movie 27 Dresses

next day oct 30 am

Ocean Grove.  The next day.  Oct. 30, 2012. Paul Goldfinger photo

 

By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger

After consulting with a well known dune scientist and other experts,  an “engineered design” was developed for rebuilding OG’s dunes, and that project will begin next week. The main purpose of the dunes will be to protect the OG beachfront and the town itself from future storms.

This announcement was made by J.P. Gradone, the COO of the Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Association, and we also interviewed Bill Bailey, the CMA Director of Operations, who has been the point man for all the post-Sandy work that we have been witnessing during the last two years.

Stewart Farrell, our dune consultant, is a  scientist who is the Director of the Richard Stockton Coastal Research Center. He has been studying the Jersey Shore for nearly 30 years. Farrell walked our beach to assess elevations and sand loss immediately after Sandy hit.  Then, he returned in March, 2013, to hit the beach again with Bill Bailey and to begin discussions of dune planning.  Two weeks ago  he returned to help finalize the plans for rebuilding the dunes here in the Grove.

After Sandy devastated the Shore, Farrell said that the beaches which had received prior replenishment from the Army Corps of Engineers and which had the highest and widest dunes had the least amount of damage.

In Ocean Grove, the places where there were no bulkheads and where openings in the dunes let in the storm flood (“the funnel effect,”) there was the most boardwalk destruction. Our dunes had been developing for 25 years, and they offered a good measure of protection for the town during Sandy, “getting us through some high tides. “

Except for the beach and board damage, however, Ocean Grove didn’t do too badly from Sandy compared to the damage elsewhere such as in Mantoloking and Harvey Cedars. Besides the dunes, we were additionally protected by bulkheads, where they existed north and south, and also because Ocean Grove is among a relatively small number of Shore towns ( including Long Branch, Asbury Park and Cape May) that are on the mainland, as opposed to barrier islands which are much more vulnerable.

Our dune project will begin next week with excavation.   A 25 foot wide space will be created north to south between the boardwalk and the back of the dunes. This will allow vehicles to get through.

The new dune will be made from existing and excavated sand  and it will be 32 feet wide (east to west.). The height will be four feet, in contrast to giant dunes, over 20 feet in some locations, which are being constructed in more vulnerable places at the Shore.

Our dune is designed to be a continuum of about 1,000 feet, with “cuts” that zigzag through to allow access to the beach. Eventually there will be “walk-overs” that allow access “over the top” of the dunes. If a big storm is expected, those “cuts” can be filled in.

Snow fences will be installed on the east and west sides of the dune. The latter will prevent sand from blowing onto the boardwalk and Ocean Avenue; an extra benefit will be to keep people off. The former will be important in “catching sand” to make the dunes denser and bigger over time.

Since dune grass does best if planted in November, the CMA will wait until next year to plant the grass, and Mr. Farrell has laid out suggestions as to how to do that in terms of spacing. Over time, the root systems of the dune grass will help “fortify” the dune.

Note that the beach replenishment made the beach bigger. It is now 12 feet above sea level, so adding that to the 4 foot engineered dunes yields a dune height of 16 feet, just slightly higher than the 15.5 foot elevated boardwalk.

In summary, Ocean Grove will be protected by a “series of engineered systems” starting with the beach replenishment, then the dunes, then the reinforced bulkhead which is a complex structure tied into the east side of the boardwalk,  coupled with the relocation of the middle boardwalk west, about 30 feet.  And finally there are the  strong construction methods that were used in building the boardwalk itself.

Bill Bailey says, “As promised, we built it right.”

 

In May, the existing metal bulkhead was tied into new wood construction which later was bolted to the new boardwalk. Blogfinger photo

In May, the existing metal bulkhead was tied into new wood construction which later was bolted to the new boardwalk. Blogfinger photo

For those in government and for scientists such as Stewart Farrell, they know that the Jersey shore will be increasingly vulnerable in the future due to rising ocean levels and continued erosion of sand from the beaches, coupled with more severe storms.      The Army Corps has been back to the Jersey shore many times during the last 60 years or so, and hopefully the government will stay involved in the future.

A private contractor will do the work, and it should be noted that the dune construction is being financed entirely by the OGCMA.

For Ocean Grove, we have reason to be optimistic as to how well we will do when the next big storm hits. Bill Bailey is quick to credit the “experts” who collaborated in the design of this fortress construction and he also loves to tell how a Boy Scout, Bobby Easton, working on an Eagle project about 20 years ago, and assisted by his friend Dave Shotwell, Jr., came up with the notion that sand dunes in the Grove could help protect the town. Well, it turns out that the idea was successful; it just took a couple of decades to prove the point.

Note: Excellent related article from the New Yorker magazine:  link to “The Beach Builders.”

SUE RANEY:

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