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 Click Here to Send Us Your Story and Memories of Asbury Park

    My name is Teri Dessalet and I have been looking at some sights about the casino, amusements and carousel in Asbury Park, NJ because my grandfather owned some of them. He owned the arcade and carousel and the pinball machines, little cranes, skeeball, roulette wheel (which I just recently found out was rigged!), designed golf courses in the area, also owned the bumber cars and fun house at Palace Amusements, and was head of the board of education, he also owned a place that sold(?) or had juke boxes, among other things. He was a wonderful, kind and sensitive man who suffered from crippling arthritis starting in his twenties. From what I gather, the pressure of the job and pain of his arthritis (which they had no meds for at the time) were too much for him and one day he just walked away from it all, money and all. My Grandmother, who died this year, told me a story about how one of my grandfather's friends asked if he could store a bunch of juke boxes in his garage temporarily until he could sell them. Being the sweet guy he was, he let him and came to find out later that they were stolen. He was so upset and stressed out about it, that he went to a friend on the police force and asked what to do. He told him to just get them off his property and say nothing or else he would be blamed in some manner. So that's what he did. That night however, he lost all of his hair in clumps (when he washed it), and was bald from then on. My Grandmother was so mad about it she told him it served him right. 
    I was pretty young when we lived there and just have limited memories of that time, but my Mom (it was her father- Willard Elias Ashmore) has a lot more info. and memories than me. I also have two older sisters who would remember much more. I remember always winning a stuffed animal when we played games (the ones that were rigged, I found out this year) and playing skeeball, riding the bumper cars, and being treated like little pricesses when we were with my Grandfather there. He always made us feel so special. I would like any information, pics, etc. regarding my Grandfather too. I just feel like he deserved better in life than he ended up with ( he lived with us many years before he died in 1976), and was dear to my heart and all of us in the family. Even at the end of his life he touched many peoples hearts in Mankato, MN. He was an avid basketball fan of our high school, Mankato Wilson, and did not miss a game even though he had leg braces and was terribly crippled with deformed joints wrapped daily in ace bandages. Slipping and falling on the ice during the basketball winter season was always a concern, but still he did not miss a game (he played in his young years). That year we went to the State Tournament, but right before that he became terribly ill and was in the hospital. The last thing he asked was who was going to play center. We told him Mike Westlund. He died after that. Well, my Dad wrote a story about how he never gave in and kept trudging on through adversity, how he had a "Can do" attitude and the story ended up in the paper. The basketball team (typically egotistical guys) took part in his funeral and payed him the utmost respect. During tournaments one of the boys came up and told my Grandma that they were going to win it for him. Well, they lost in double or triple overtime (can't remember which), by a basket and got second place - it was a heart breaker. But throughout it all were banners of "Can Do" in honor of him and each one of them wore a necklace that said Can Do with their names on the back. Years later Mike Westlund ( the center of the basketball team who my grandfather last talked about) came down with a severe case of leukemia. We heard that he had a Can Do necklace in his hand before he died and told a reporter the story about my grandfather and his courage and how much he had affected his life, which I believe was in the Mankato Free Press (haven't seen it). That was the kind of man my Grandfather was. This is probably more info than you need, but it was such a great story about him that I wanted to share it with you. Let me know if any of this is helpful or if you want more info. from any of my relatives. Hope I can help you out, and maybe get some more info., memorabilia, etc. of my grandfathers.
                   Thanks! Teri D
Eileen (I'm telling.... mom...)
Asbury -places, times remembered vintage 1971-1981
    "hangin on the boards"
    The  Upstage on Cookman
    Sunshine In
    Dr Zoom and the Sonic Boom
    The Wager in the basement of the now defunct church     on Second and Grant
    The Empire Bar aka the Quack Quack
    Mrs Jays
    Pinball at the Palace or Convention Hall
    "hangin under the boards"

PS: Didn't you bum money from Jethro Tull and think Bowser was ugly? Also said "who the hell went to the Palace?"

A Bruce Springsteen Fan  - Gordon Johnston, Glasgow UK  3/5/2003
What a great site! 
I am a massive Bruce Springsteen fan from the UK. While on holiday in NYC in 2001, I decided that I had to visit Asbury Park, having heard so much about it over many, many years.
I strolled down the boardwalk, visited the Stone Pony and met some great people. I could feel a real sense of history in the place, and hope that one day the city is restored to its former glories.
A few photographs are attached as requested.
I would love to come back and visit some day!

Asbury Park

Asbury Park
David Dorfman

Gilman Commercial Realty

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