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Tug is associated with replenishment project. Photo was taken between OG and Asbury by Bob Bown Special for Blogfinger © Jan 25, 2014

Tug is associated with replenishment project. Photo was taken between OG and Asbury.  Special to Blogfinger © Jan 25, 2014  By Bob  Bowné  Left Click

BILL FRISELL.  “Who Was That Girl?”

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snowperson

By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger   Reposted from January, 2014.

Frosty the Snowman is one of the heroes of the holidays. Yet you don’t see too many of them around OG. So today, two days after our snowstorm, Bruce and Eddie Holmes of Mt. Hermon Way decided to fix that situation.  Eddie said that he was creating a snowman, but it’s only a matter of time before the snow feminists complain.

Eddie’s “Frosty” already had a carrot nose, but he needed to do something with their extra carrot. Bruce wanted to use it to make eyes, but charcoal is more traditional. I suggested another anatomic part for the snowperson, but Eddie solved the issue by burying the extra carrot in the snow . He wasn’t bothered by the gender ambiguity evident in his new friend.

So, for now,  we have a snowman and that probably won’t bother anybody. Besides, it doesn’t matter, because it’s Eddie’s friend, so Eddie decides.

THE JACKSON FIVE   (Blogfinger swore off Christmas music for awhile, but it is essential now to post Frosty the Snowman.  You will like the Jackson Five with this song)   51IZjwxYyAL._SL500_SY150_

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THE BLOGFINGER ARTICLE BELOW IS FROM MARCH 19, 2014.  Read it to see where we were over 3 years ago.

 

It was a fun game of musical shovels as officials tried to spell

It was a fun game of musical shovels as officials tried to spell “Neptune.” By Paul Goldfinger ©

This is where the project will end---at Founders' Park. Desilting is a separate project from the wall restoration seen above. Blogfinger photo March, 2014.

This is where the project will end—at Founders’ Park. Desilting is a separate project from the wall restoration seen above. Blogfinger photo March, 2014.

 

wesley-lake-commission-thermometer1-SCALED

AP Sun photo March 19, 2014. ©  Read the thermometer. Mayor Bradley presides. Vito Gadaleta is in the tan jacket. 

By Paul Goldfinger, Editor  @Blogfinger

March 19, 2014,  Ocean Grove:      A chilly groundbreaking ceremony was held today next to the broken-down cement retaining wall adjacent to Founders’ Park.  Officials from the Wesley Lake Commission, Asbury Park, and Neptune Township came together to officially announce that the $1.5 million project to rebuild portions of the wall in Ocean Grove and to desilt the Lake are now in full swing.  The event was chaired by Neptune Mayor Michael Brantley who has a long interest in trying to improve the situation at Wesley Lake.  After years of frustration, he seemed almost giddy today as he organized a photo-op of officials with ceremonial shovels trying to spell “Neptune.”

Wesley Lake is one of a number of coastal lakes in this vicinity, including Fletcher Lake,  which have been deteriorating over time due to a multitude of  ecologic issues including storm water running off the streets containing chemicals and bacteria and then streaming into the lakes. Contamination causing degradation of  natural conditions endangers the health of fish and causes  promotion of weeds as well as silt buildup on the bottom.  Oxygenation of the water becomes impaired and there is the accumulation of garbage on the bottom or just floating by.

Wesley Lake. Paul Goldfinger photo 2013

Wesley Lake. Paul Goldfinger photo 2013  ©

The Wesley Lake Commission is composed of representatives of both towns (there is a similar cooperative group at Fletcher Lake,)  but in the case of Wesley Lake, the Commission has been wrestling with these current issues for at least the last ten years, with efforts being frustrated by lack of adequate funding to reverse some of the problems.

I attended a meeting several years ago of the Friends of Wesley Lake, a now defunct group of concerned citizens that tried to motivate residents to make the Lake better, but the best that they could come up with was to sponsor a cleanup day–to pick up garbage in and around the Lake.

We heard some activists from Ocean Grove and Asbury Park speak at that meeting  who expressed their frustration over a problem that seemingly was insurmountable due to  financial issues and which included a worrisome situation involving oil and gasoline contamination of the soil on the Asbury side.

A few years ago, the Commission determined that it would cost about $12 million to fix Wesley Lake and its related problems such as the streetscape along the lake, the OG wall, the condition of the fish, and storm water management.   Neptune Township recently commissioned a survey of the depth of sediment buildup in the entire lake.  They found that silt accumulation was minimal on the Asbury side due to dredging that was evidently done when AP built their metal retaining wall about 5 years ago.  But on the Ocean Grove side, the silt buildup had to become part of the current project. Desilting will also be done at Fletcher Lake to complete the dredging goals.

Then came Sandy, and that superstorm caused further deterioration in the Lake and in the crumbling cement retaining wall on the Ocean Grove side which has been declining for years.

At today’s event, the Mayor told us that $1.5 million had been raised  (beginning in 2013)  in the form of grants, mostly from a Federal agency, the National Resource Conservation Service (Dept. of Agriculture). Other sources brought the funds to well over $2 million.  So now we are seeing reconstruction of 400 linear feet of wall which will extend from the boardwalk end to the Founders’ Park end.  The remaining cement wall to the west will have to wait for more funds at another time.

The current project, being done by Precise Construction, will rebuild the wall by using temporary steel sheet pilings, front and rear, to hold back the dirt and the water, while the permanent structure is restored using reenforced concrete which, according to Neptune Engineering Chief Leanne Hoffmann, should last at least 50 years. A separate project will be done now to desilt along the Ocean Grove wall out to 30 feet.  Desilting is another way to say “dredging. ” The new terminology is preferred by the DEP.  45,000 cubic yards will be removed and dumped somewhere.  The project should be done by Memorial Day.

Among the speakers today  were Vito Gadaleta, the Township Business Administrator and Peter Avakian, the Commission Engineer. Also present was Neptune Committeeman Randy Bishop of Ocean Grove.     The mood was happy because these officials and the citizens of Ocean Grove and Asbury Park have waited so long to see meaningful progress.

The meeting concluded with participants  heading over to the west end of the Lake to check out a big thermometer which will track future financing towards the $12 million needed for future continued progress which, by the way, will include restocking with fish.

When this project is over, church bells may ring in the Grove   (you know what’s coming)

THE FIREBIRDS   (no, not the Willows or the Diamonds)

 

 

 

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Bob Bowne catches a trawler and a surfer on the Ocean Grove beach. January, 2014 © Special to Blogfinger.

Bob Bowné catches a trawler and a surfer at  the Ocean Grove beach. January, 2014 © Special to Blogfinger.  Re-posted from Jan. 2014.  ©.

BRIAN STOKES MITCHELL.  From his album Simply Broadway.  “The Impossible Dream” is from Don Quixote.  The song is dedicated to the surfers who go out alone to challenge the ocean and dream of the impossible wave.

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The mark in the foreground is at the south eastern corner of the property  Blogfinger photo

The mark in the foreground is at the south eastern corner of the property Blogfinger photo. Click to enlarge and read the side of the truck.

This mark is on Lake Avenue at the north western corner of the property.

This mark is on Lake Avenue at the north western corner of the property.

 

This view shows the southern edge of the "blighted area in need of re-development". At the lower edge you can see the orange marker.  The hotel (or more condos) will be at that location, with view of the ocean). Further west on Spray will be some single family homes.  Blogfinger photo July 14, 2015 ©

This view shows the southern edge of the “blighted area in need of re-development”. At the lower edge you can see the orange marker. The hotel (or more condos) will be at this location**, with views of the ocean. Further west on Spray will be a row of single family homes with underground garages. Blogfinger photo July 14, 2015 ©  Click to enlarge.

By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger

Orange marks have been placed around Block (1) and a section of the Lake Avenue walkway by a land surveyor who is preparing a survey map that will be used by an architect and engineer in creating site plans that must be submitted for approval to all agencies having jurisdiction over the proposed plan.  After those approvals, construction plans can be  prepared.  These maps will demarcate the outlines of the property which will comprise the bulk of  the North End plan.  They also will provide documentation regarding the sale of the property.

We know that WAVE, the mysterious LLC that will soon become  the sole re-developer of the NERP,  has contracted to purchase most of the North End property from the Camp Meeting Association.   That purchase is tantamount to owning the land, although it is officially promoted as a 99 year lease in perpetuity.

The Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Association stands to receive a large sum of money for selling that valuable property  to WAVE.   As we have reported, the identities of the individuals behind WAVE have not been released.  Meanwhile, the CMA has requested that the Township officially remove them as co-developer. That will require a resolution by the Township.

For some observers it seems like a poor decision for the CMA to give up such valuable property because there is so much money to be made in the future from all sorts of possible uses including parking for the Township. But perhaps the CMA is somehow still involved with WAVE and thus stands to gain in that way. We already know that if the hotel is turned into condos, the CMA will receive a 10% fee for each one sold.

Blogfinger will continue to educate the Ocean Grove public as to the truth of what’s happening with the NERP. We are sticking to this because, according to the Duck Principle, “If it quacks like a duck, it probably is a duck.”

We plan to report on  a variety of issues related to the NERP. Some of them will be surprises. There’s quite a lot to keep us busy.

Among those matters, we want to revisit the outrageous 2007 Planning Board vote which recommended that the Township approve the special designation  (“area in need of redevelopment”)  which resulted in the  zoning being changed despite what was in the best interest of the Grove.  That was the key event in this whole story.

Here is a link about that 2007 Planning Board vote:     https://blogfinger.net/2015/04/20/2007-the-planning-board-passes-a-resolution-to-allow-an-area-in-need-of-redevelopment-why-did-they-do-that/

Wee will soon report on something else that relates to that Planning Board vote in 2007.

You can forget about the Coaster for information.  They merely are stenographers who copy down whatever the HOA and the Committee tell them.  And as for the OGHOA, they have no idea about the the real truths beneath the surface, and they don’t want to know.  Their last statement was replete with errors.

We will try to find the truths and to assemble the pieces of the puzzle.

**The location of the hotel building is the worst possible choice.  The hotel  (or probably condos) will be the tallest building  (5 stories) in the zone and will block the most views of the Ocean.  The tallest building should be placed in the back of the zone, not in front. This decision is arrogant and gives a clue as to the attitude of the developers towards the town of Ocean Grove.  The idea that they have reduced the density has been celebrated by the out-to-lunch OGHOA who should be standing on their heads in opposition to this “travesty.”

Credit:  Ocean Grover Jack Bredin has been doing important research for Blogfinger as we pursue this story.

BAHA MEN:

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Broadway light installation continues on June 23, 2015.  By Prosper Bellizia, Blogfinger staff.©

Broadway light installation continues on June 23, 2015. By Prosper Bellizia, Blogfinger staff.©

BILLY JOEL   (song suggested by Prosper)

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Ocean Grove, June 23, 2015. Blogfinger photo ©

Ocean Grove, June 23, 2015. Blogfinger photo ©

“Hey, it’s CSI,” said the guy in the street taking pictures.  The DPW truck had rolled up a short time before. The corner of Delaware and Mt. Hermon Way was the scene of the crime.   There had been a drive-by garbage drop. A black plastic bag had splattered on the delicate asphalt of one of OG’s historic intersections, and SPLAT, refuse was spread around into a circular crime scene.

The two special agents from Neptune DPW circled the mess and pondered what to do. Meredith Rosenberg, a neighbor, was observing from a safe distance on the sidewalk as she suggested that they photograph the garbage.

Why, you ask? Well Meredith must watch those CSI shows. She noticed that there was mail in the muck.

“Take a picture of it,” she said. “You can trace the crime back to the criminal.”

When I arrived on the scene, the DPI special agent was bent over taking some macro photos of the mail (Apple calls it macro-mail or the i-Crime solver app.)

The DPI truck rolled away with the evidence, no doubt to get to the lab. After all, without DNA, you can’t get a conviction any more.  Jurors watch TV.

BEBE NEUWIRTH.   From “Chicago the Musical.”

 

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FEnce erected between OG and Bradley Beach. Source tells us that BB wants to keep Sunday morning OG bathers out.  Photo by Prosper Bellizia, BF reporter. ©

Fence erected between OG and Bradley Beach. Source tells us that BB wants to keep Sunday morning OG bathers out. Photo by Prosper Bellizia, BF reporter. ©

ROY ROGERS:

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Wesley Lake, Ocean Grove.  June 1, 2015.  By Prosper Bellizia, Blogfinger staff.

Wesley Lake, Ocean Grove. June 1, 2015. By Prosper Bellizia, Blogfinger staff.  Click for a delightful closeup.

Prosper Bellizia took this photo and said,   “Monday evening 6:20 pm 2 weeks AFTER clean up.”

Anybody from the Wesley Lake Commission want to comment?  How about it Committeeman Brantley, the Commissioner of Wesley Lake? You do represent the people—right?

And how about a comment from the Friends of Wesley Lake?

MUSIC FROM BAMBI II:

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We recently posted a photography article about rooftops, featuring a print by a professional New York photographer.  So we offered a prize if someone would send us a photograph of Ocean Grove rooftops. But no one  participated. So that left an entry by Blogfinger photographer Jean Bredin  (lovely photo Jean)  and one by me.  We can’t win a prize, but here are our entries:

Rooftops of Tent City in Ocean Grove. By Jean Bredin ©

Rooftops of Tent City in Ocean Grove. By Jean Bredin ©

North End rooftops in the Grove. By Paul Goldfinger ©

North End rooftops in the Grove. By Paul Goldfinger ©

THE NYLONS  (with an a cappella version of “Up on the Roof”)

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