Archive for the ‘Photographs by Blogfinger’ Category

Large crowd awaits the Governor of New Jersey: Chris Christie

Large crowd awaits the Governor of New Jersey: Chris Christie.  All photos by Paul Goldfinger @Blogfinger  ©  Click on all images to enlarge.


By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger. July 3, 2014

Despite concerns about the weather, it was a sunny breezy festive day for the late morning cutting-the-ribbon ceremony on the boardwalk in Ocean Grove, New Jersey.

A large and happy crowd assembled in front of a raised platform for the speakers and along Ocean Avenue. A band played, lead by Harry Eichhorn, and free ice cream sandwiches were being distributed.

Crowd along Ocean Avenue. ©

Crowd along Ocean Avenue.  All  photos by Paul Goldfinger, Blogfinger.net


The media was out in full force with reporters, videographers and photographers along with trucks from Fox News TV and WABC TV.

The Governor arrived in a black SUV, right on time. He wore chinos and a red Rutgers shirt.   He walked briskly, right up to the platform.

Gov. Christie arrives at the Ocean Grove beachfront and walks the new boardwalk. Cheers and applause. ©

Gov. Christie arrives with his entourage  at the Ocean Grove beachfront and walks onto the new boardwalk. Cheers and applause.


Dale Whilden, COO of the Camp Meeting Association, was the MC and he gave the first speech. He thanked just about everyone who helped get us from Sandy until now including over 1,000 volunteers.

He said that our boardwalk is the “Jersey Shore’s boardwalk.”   As he introduced Governor Chris Christie, he said the Governor was “the backbone” of the effort to turn FEMA around.


Dale Whilden (L to R), Sen Jennifer Beck, Assemblywoman Caroline Casagrande,Rep Chris Smith, Mayor Michael Brantley ©

CMA President Dale Whilden (L to R), Sen Jennifer Beck, Assemblywoman Caroline Casagrande, Rep. Chris Smith, and Mayor Michael Brantley  taking the new boards for a test drive and bragging about the FEMA victory.




Congressman Chris Smith ©

Congressman Chris Smith.



Ribbon cutting (really). ©

Ribbon cutting (really).


Here are some selected quotes from the event:

1. Governor Christie: “The Ocean Grove boardwalk restoration was the last one and the hardest one.”

“Rep. Chris Smith was relentless in getting FEMA to change its mind, and we couldn’t get it done without him.”

” State Sen. Jennifer Beck was constantly calling me and my office to push to solve Ocean Grove ‘s dilemma. I’m glad to have her as a partner”

“It took the most jumping up and down and the most yelling and screaming and that’s what they brought me in for.”

“A lot of folks still need help. It will take years to fully recover.”


2. Rep Chris Smith, “The denials by FEMA were unyielding at first. But FEMA had it wrong.”

“Support at all levels of government were essential—it was teamwork. But the Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Association’s leaders worked so hard to explain its position and they made the critical difference.”

3. State Senator Jennifer Beck came to the microphone with a big smile and exclaimed, “How beautiful is this boardwalk!!”   And the crowd roared its approval.

Sen Beck gave high marks to the Governor and to Marc Ferzan from the Governor’s office of recovery and rebuilding.


4. Mayor Michael Brantley thanked his staffers from Neptune Township who worked hard on the Ocean Grove boardwalk.


Gov. wades into crowd and poses with kids. ©

Gov. wades into crowd and poses with kids.

After the ribbon cutting, which was a photo op lasting a few seconds, the Governor delighted the folks by wading into the friendly crowd: taking selfies, giving hugs, greeting babies, talking issues and posing for photos. He stayed for about 30 minutes before getting back into his vehicle.


Gov. poses for another photo. He's really good at mingling with the folks.---making up for lost time. ©

Gov. poses for another photo. He’s really good at mingling with the folks.—making up for lost time.


All in all, it was a wonderful event–unusual for our town in that a large crowd assembled to join together and be happy for Ocean Grove  which had seemingly been ignored by FEMA but now was ready again for its favorite time of year.





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Ocean Grove as seen from inside the GA.  October, 2013.  By Paul Goldfinger © Blogfinger.net. Click to enlarge.


MICHAEL PENN. “On Your Way,”  From the soundtrack of HBO’s  series Girls



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Matt's Market in Belmar, NJ. Blogfinger photo. Matt’s Market in Belmar, NJ. Blogfinger photo.


By Paul and Eileen Goldfinger, Editors  @Blogfinger.


It took us awhile, but today we discovered Matt’s Farm Market and Garden Center in Belmar on Rt. 71. Just take Memorial Drive and go south on Rt. 35  over the bridge and turn left onto 71 south by the Windmill.  Matt’s is #1740 NJ  71,  just up the road  apiece on the left.  There is limited but usually sufficient parking.

Matt’s has been around for many years.  They have their own farm and there is a huge stock of Jersey Best produce including green beans, Jersey tomatoes, peppers, sweet corn, melons, plums, peaches, figs, nectarines, and much more.  The tomatoes are 3 pounds for $4.50; (2015 prices) Eileen found their prices to be less than Wegmans across the board.  She said that the heirloom tomatoes at Matt’s are half the price of Wegmans.

Tony Pagano of UVas chats with eileen over the Jersey tomatoes. © Paul Goldfinger photo. Tony Pagano of Uva’s Restaurant in Bradley Beach chats with Eileen about the Jersey tomatoes and peaches. They let Eileen in because of her OG beach badge.  Paul Goldfinger photo. 8/28/15

We dropped in at 4:00 pm today (Friday. Mid-August) The place was busy, and we bumped into Tony Pagano, the chef and owner of the fabulous Uva Italian Restaurant on Main Street in Bradley Beach.  I love his veal chops. We chatted a bit.  He said that Matt’s has incredible produce which he buys for his restaurant.  “Tonight, he said, “we are featuring veal Milanese”    —-mmmmmmm!

Eileen and Tony were inspecting the tomato display and chatting about how to fry green tomatoes. Eileen asked him about their new baby girl Raffaella. He pulled out a giant iPhone and flashed a photo of his beautiful daughter who, he said, wakes up happy every morning and gets to visit him at the restaurant once each week.

Raffaella and Tony at Uva's Restaurant. Paul Goldfinger photo. Sept. 1, 2015 Raffaella and Tony Pagano  at Uva’s Restaurant in Bradley Beach.. Paul Goldfinger photo. Sept. 1, 2015


Matt's tomatoes which we bought. The two funny looking ones in front are heirlooms (spellcheck said Matt’s tomatoes which we bought. The two small funny-looking ones in front are heirlooms (spellcheck said “hairline.”) Blogfinger photo.

It took a bit of convincing to get Eileen out of Matt’s.

By the way, my favorite restaurant  is on Mt. Hermon Way where Eileen Goldfinger is the chef and everything else.    Sometimes I help by chopping things.

But I do a lot of the shopping for Eileen’s bistro where, like Raos’s, you can’t get in without an invitation.  For tonight I bought beautiful cod loin and Jersey sweet corn at Wegmans. Eileen loves that store, so she (aka sushi) is a sort of culinary superhero whom I call “Wegwoman.”

We will be going back to Matt’s. Eileen keeps buying us tomatoes which she says are  good for the prostate.  She seemed surprised when I told her that she doesn’t have one.   But, I hasten to add, that I am making a joke at her expense.  She has been my straight woman for years and she still laughs at the jokes.  Go figure!


PETE RODRIGUEZ   from the movie Chef

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By Paul Goldfinger. November 1, 2013. © click left for a bigger view

By Paul Goldfinger.    Click to enlarge,


Matthew Morrison.  Original Broadway cast recording Finding Neverland



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Ocean Grove. 6:30 pm. July 26, 2018.  A girl in her summer clothes.  Click all photos for better view.  Paul Goldfinger photographs © Blogfinger.net



Beach Patrol, late shift. OG 7/26/18. Rough seas. Lifeguard tournament will be next week. Paul Goldfinger portrait. ©



CONNIE EVINGSON   From her album  Gypsy in my Soul.



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Used to be our town, too. Ocean Grove. Paul Goldfinger photo ©
“This used to be our town, too.”    Paul Goldfinger photo ©  This subject is still relevant even though it first stuck its inquisitive head out of the primordial fog of the Mother Ship and Pitman Avenue.


By Paul Goldfinger, Editor@Blogfinger   (NOTE:  This article was originally posted on Dec  31, 2015, and again in 2020. )

In view of the current signs of life emerging out of the North End Redevelopment Plan’s resting place, here is another chance to read selected quotes by your neighbors and a few others regarding governance in this town and about the North End plan.

Why is it that our local institutions never seem to place the interests of OG’s citizens first?  Representative government here has failed.  The Neptune Committee makes you wait 3 hours before you get 5 minutes to speak at their meetings,  and they show essentially no interest in what the citizens of Ocean Grove think.

They have even threatened a Grover who spoke “out of turn” at their meetings.

Now (2020)  they will take advantage of the coronavirus to further distance their governance nonsense from we the people.

Here is a collection of comments, mostly from 2015, but some from 2011 and 2012, repeated now to show the extent of discourse, mostly on the critical side, and to offer a sense of clamor for change leading up to 2016.  Note that this is just a mere sprinkling of quotes, chosen arbitrarily from the nearly 17,000 comments made on Blogfinger  (except for A.O. Scott) since 2009 to 2015.

A.O. Scott of the New York Times, 2015,  talks about “how power operates in the absence of accountability. When institutions convinced of their own greatness work together, what usually happens is that the truth is buried and the innocent suffer.

“Breaking that pattern of collaboration is not easy. Challenging deeply entrenched, widely respected authority can be very scary.”  (This quote of A.O. Scott comes from his N.Y.Times movie review of “Spotlight” but it rings true for Neptune Township.)

Jack (Bredin) :  The proposed subdivision on Sea View Avenue will result in 4 illegal lots. Whoever purchases them could have big problems in the future, and the Neptune Township Planning Board doesn’t give a flying fig*.

Devo:  Sunlight is the best disinfectant.

Jack: You would increase your chances of getting a subdivision if you hire a politically connected attorney who can trot out a professional planner who is willing to lie to the Board under oath.  You must first make a campaign contribution.

Kevin (Chambers) : As a service to the people of Ocean Grove it would be nice to have that Committee oath of office  printed on your site to remind each of the Committee people that their duty is to uphold the laws of the State and to enforce those laws, and that includes zoning laws—–for the protection of all the people in Neptune equally.

Oath of office Neptune Comedy

Kevin: The attorneys and the planners have the obligation to the public to make sure that testimony is factual, consistent and truthful. In one of these two cases it is anything but that.

Paul Goldfinger:  The people of Ocean Grove are being plundered, just as if the Vikings returned from Iceland and landed on the shores of Ocean Grove.


What we do know is :
-The Township Committee has no heart.
-The Planning Board has no brain and,
-the OGHOA have no courage.

They all just “go along” with the “Flat Earth Society” opinions from the Township’s professional planners and engineers who most likely were referred to Neptune by the Great Wizard.

The fact is, we have no idea who is running (ruining) our town.

Blogfinger:   The Home Groaners’ Board has taken the Kool Aid and has jumped on the bandwagon which says that RSIS*** parking standards are no good for Ocean Grove

Rev Janeba:  Although I am a Brooklynite, my heart is in Ocean Grove – the Ocean Grove I KNOW, not the cartoon theme park version that so many misguided persons are trying to bring about. Thank you so much for looking out for MY best interests, too.

Radar:  I can’t remember any recent meeting that a vote was taken on the Homeowners’ position.

By the Sea:   Who does the OGHOA think they serve? Why do they not test their positions with their own membership? I am a member and I can attest to the fact that OGHOA members were never offered an opportunity to review the RSIS issue, vote on or even discuss it.

From the Neptune Application to SIAB**:      “This application…seeks relief from RSIS standards in an overall effort to balance the needs of residents, visitors, and public safety with the unique challenges of maintaining a Federal and State Historic Designation coupled with the unique and historic patterns of development that comprise Ocean Grove as a whole.”

“It is estimated that there are approximately 1.38 potential on-street parking spaces per occupied unit (ie house or condo). This potential inventory adequately addresses the parking need, given that the average number of vehicles per household in the 2010 census is 1.5 vehicles.”

“Neptune Township has worked in concert with the OGCMA to continue to ameliorate parking issues within Ocean Grove.”

Blogfinger  (re: RISS:)   Let’s face it, this has nothing to do with history or even parking, and everything to do with greed.

Blogfinger:   The $64,000.00 question: Even if the State turns down the application and leaves the RSIS rules in place, who is going to enforce the law?  After all, even today, the RSIS rules are in effect in Ocean Grove and they haven’t prevented condos without parking from being built— single family homes should have been constructed instead.

New Kid in Town  Has any thought been given to forming a citizen’s group to formally object to Neptune Township’s dishonest efforts to destroy our historical town for greed and profit? I for one, would be happy to join such a group and support it in anyway I could. I know many others who would do the same.

Upset taxpayer    I invite anyone on the Township Committee that thinks we already have adequate parking, to sit on my porch on any Friday, Saturday or Sunday all spring, summer and fall, and watch the frustration among all visitors to Ocean Grove.

Michael Grover (2011)     I believe the language in the proposed Master Plan is intended to further develop ratables for the Township in Ocean Grove at the expense of its residents. The Board is attempting to set up a structure that will permit replacement of B and B’s with condominiums and development of larger structures, further adding to our density.

Don’t count on the HPC to protect us, using historic preservation as grounds to prevent conversions. Recent decisions and the North End project demonstrate their weakness against the Planning Board.

As for the Township Committee, don’t look to them for much help either. The town needs money, and this is New Jersey, enough said. We will need to protect ourselves.

Mary Beth Jahn:     (2011)    I am the sole member of the Township Committee to vote against the North End plan, and I still believe that single-family homes and not condos should be built on that site.

OGrover:  2011    The recent high density project with it’s proposed underground parking is not supposed to add to the parking issues but will do nothing to alleviate them either. (Underground parking next to the ocean and a lake? The Titanic was unsinkable, too!)

Frank: (2011)  New Jersey Site Improvement Advisory Board knows the situation of our not owning the property, and their recommendation for parking is that Neptune follow the Municipal Land Use Law’s standards that are used throughout the state. I have a copy of the letter addressed to Neptune from the Sites Board that states that the Township is to follow the standards for parking

Joan C (2012)    I was rather surprised to read that Mr. Williams stated so emphatically that he would never read nor respond on Blogfinger. Is Mr. Williams “too good” for the blog? Is he choosing to remain unaware of the concerns of our residents? I frankly had hoped that all members of both parties read Blogfinger, which is the least divisive, non-political posting of relevant information for those of us living in Ocean Grove and Neptune Township

Devo (2012)  The North end project, in its current form, will not benefit the Grove. It will generate significant additional traffic, create additional parking issues (despite what they say they are planning), will depress home/condo prices for the existing housing stock, and will add out of character buildings. I wasn’t here when all this went down, but I can’t imagine why folks in OG think this is a good idea.

The longer it is delayed, the better.

Michael Grover (2012)  Those of us concerned about noise and congestion, not to mention density and over-development, need to look no farther than the North End project. Want a problem that really happens and lasts forever? Why was this project approved, and where was the HPC to protect the integrity of our beloved historic district? It’s a lot easier to enforce the rules when the issue is the color of a house and other minor cosmetic concerns, or when you have the authority to impose a decision no matter how unjustified on a weak, defenseless homeowner. Take on the town and the developers, that’s another story.

Devo (2012)    Scuttle the redevelopment plan now, or forever be sorry you did not.

Bythesea (2012)  Developing the North End under a State sanctioned redevelopment designation is a terrible idea. I can tell you right now that, based on what has happened most other places in NJ, OG will lose all control and hate the outcome. OG should seek to bring about the collapse of this redevelopment plan. The land and location is valuable/desirable enough that the CMA should be able to manage its own redevelopment.

Despite Mary Beth Jahn’s best intent and all of our wishful thinking, redevelopment areas take on a life of their own and they always gravitate to higher than expected density and insensitivity to quality of life concerns of the town they are occurring in (e.g., traffic impact, parking, etc.).

Gosh: (2012) I have to say for the last time, the approval of the redevelopment of the North End was never legal.

Mary Beth Jahn   (2012)   Those who are sucking sour lemons and trying to run a smear campaign wouldn’t know or care, because they have no respect for the Grove’s historic designation and would have no problem turning the Grove into Condo City.

Wisher:  (2012)  There will be no distinguishing OG or Asbury Park in the future. No grand vistas, or public places for shoppers and beach-goers. People won’t come here any more than they will go to any of the myriad of other shore towns. No distinguishing characteristics. Just everything shoved up against the shoreline while developers walk about with their boatload of cash.

Gosh (2012)   Condos have been motivated by GREED and REVENUE that they bring into Neptune. There is absolutely no interest in keeping O.G. historic with single family homes; just look at the new Master Plan— there are so many gray areas for interpretation.

Bythesea:    (2012)  Where is the OGHOA on the North End Development? What stand have they taken relative to the abomination of a plan that now exists for the “redevelopment” of the North End? It is they who should be the champions in the fight against poor planning that will hurt the town. Do they just play a reactive game, or do they try to lead? Where is their position paper? Seems to me that this is by far the biggest issue on their plates for the next year.

Jack    The first and only comment from our new year (2016):

OhGee, the reason this special town exists, is to the credit of the OGCMA.

The Township Committee has the exclusive authority to adopt our zoning ordinance.
We cannot blame any property owner for developing what they are permitted to develop under the zoning ordinance adopted by the Committee.   With zoning, the buck stops with the Township Committee.

The problem is that the Committee, Planning Board and Board of Adjustment use Municipal Land Use Law in ways that were never intended by the NJ State Legislature.

**SIAB  is the State Site Improvement Advisory Board in Trenton.  They keep Blogfinger up to date on their agendas so that the Neptune Comedy doesn’t sneak into one of their meetings without the people knowing.

*** RSIS means Residential Site Improvement Standards” regarding required off site parking standards for new construction.

Editor’s note:   June, 2020. The OGNED North End Redevelopers applied to the DEP for CAFRA approval to build an underground garage at the North End.   But they were rejected, and we are seeking up-dated information as to the current status of that fraudulent plan.


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This Jersey Shore town is within 30 minutes of Ocean Grove. Blogfinger photo. May, 2015. 4th Avenue, Asbury Park, New Jersey. It is a lovely street with a canopy of plane trees  like you see in Europe, and a variety of house styles.  Blogfinger photo. May, 2015.  It’s a nice street to take a walk.   Something good will come from that.    Click on image to enlarge the dogwood tree.  ©




note:  Comments relate to our “name that town” contest with this 2015 springtime image.   You can add more comments now.

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“Nu Couché” by Modigliani was painted in 1917. It just sold for $170.4 million and is considered to be a great masterpiece.  NY Times 11/10/15

By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger.

Re-posted and slightly edited from the original 2015  BF post.     This topic reminds me of recent (2017) debates about the definition of “harassment” of women.

Definition of objectifying women:   ” Female sexual objectification by a male involves a woman being viewed primarily as an object of male sexual desire, rather than as a whole person.”   (Wikipedia )

But the definition of objectification includes more than just that.  It also includes a  broader statement as  “treating anyone or any idea as a physical  object.”

The  painting   “Nu Couché” by Amedeo Modigliani  (above)  sold yesterday  (2015) at Christie’s for  $170.4 million and  made headline news all over the world, but the reporting did not raise the issue of Modigliani’s objectifying women.

After all, ever since man could draw a picture on a cave wall he would draw a naked woman. When photography was invented in the early 19th century, what do you think was first photographed?  And, of course naked women have captured the creative juices of many male and female artists over the years, and the images are not always complimentary of the female form.

There are some female photographers who have achieved fame by photographing women, sometimes in a highly sexualized way. I wonder how many of those critics who attacked Blogfinger would have criticized Ruth Bernhard, a famous artist known for her erotic black and white images of the female nude.  Her work was compared to that of Ansel Adams, and in 2014,  a retrospective of her photographs was shown in New York City at the Peter Fetterman Gallery.  The exhibit was called “The Eternal Nude.”  She also has published a number of books of her work and she has won many awards.   Can anyone seriously claim that only men can be accused of “objectification?”

Picasso is a good example of an artist who loved to paint and sculpt  women, often  with bulging eyes and multiple breasts   (see below.)  That painting  (“Les Femmes d’Alger”  1955) sold for $179.4 million in 2015.   Would any of  you feminists accuse him of objectification?  And how about Georgia O’Keefe whose paintings of flowers were often likened to female genitalia?

Picasso. $179.4 million. NY Times. Nov 10, 2015.

The sale of the Nu Couché  reminded me of  two incidents this past summer when Ocean Grovers, two women and one man, accused me of “objectifying” women in our series “Girls in Their Summer Clothes.” You can search above to see some of those photographs from that series, but you will find that none of the women are naked, disrespected,  or even objectified.

On one occasion we posted a photo of a  female OG lifeguard in a bikini munching on a Weezer ice.  The image was taken by a woman on our staff. Would she be accused of objectification?   Here is a link to Jean Bredin’s  photo;

2017 lifeguard photo

This 2017 photo on Ocean Pathway is from our “Girls in Their Summer Clothes” series. It was accompanied by a discussion of her visit to Ocean Grove.  Paul Goldfinger photograph. ©

There are incidences when the phrase  “objectification of women” might fairly fit, as when a woman’s body is used to sell a product, but our photographs do not fit  by any reasonable standard, and I believe the accusation has been overdone in our society.

Sometimes political correctness results in nonsensical allegations, such as when feminists say that photographing or looking  at a woman in a mini-skirt is objectifying her.  The attacks on Blogfinger fall into that category.

Women have been making great strides in the US  in an effort to be appreciated as whole individuals and not the sum of their parts.  Attacking responsible segments of our society such as Blogfinger for objectification of  women is to be small minded, to distort reality, to divert attention from the important goals of women, and to turn them into victims when just the opposite is necessary.


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Paul Goldfinger from Pieces of a Woman–Netflix. 3/21.



ANNIE LENNOX    from her album Nostalgia.


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Central Park. c. 2002. By Paul Goldfinger © NYC Street Series

Central Park. c. 2002. By Paul Goldfinger © NYC Street Series


TEDDY WILSON AND HIS ORCHESTRA: Song by Matty Malneck and Johnny Mercer (lyrics) 1935.  Vocal by Lady Day—Billie Holiday.


“If you were mine

I could be a ruler of kings

And if you were mine

I could do such wonderful things”



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Finding Christ through dance. By Moe Demby, Blogfinger staff. © c. 1995.

Finding Christ through dance. By Moe Demby, Blogfinger staff. © c. 1995.  Click left.


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Ocean Grove tent awaits final dismantling. September, 2014. Paul Goldfinger photo ©

Ocean Grove tent awaits final dismantling. September, 2014. Paul Goldfinger photo ©  Click to enlarge   Re-posted from Blogfinger September 2014.


Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger.net

JOHN WILLIAMS  with Johann Pachelbel’s Canon in D.

Wouldn’t it be great if Pachelbel himself were having an ice cream at Days when he hears an orchestra playing  this piece inside one of the tents?   It might be a little tight for the string section, and we can substitute a euphonium for the stand up bass.

But otherwise it would be fine if the conductor could just be on a pedestal by the Stokes statue.  And everybody could sit on beach chairs outside and enjoy the tent concert.

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Sanibel Island Farmers Market: The best!  Paul Goldfinger photograph © Feb. 11, 2018. © Click to enlarge.

FATS WALLER “The Sheik of Araby”

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