Plus the latest on the map of the Atlantic City Tourism District, DrewToonz takes on Snooki and the Situation (and the Jersey Shore), and the Album of the Week: Emmylou Harris' 'Hard Bargain'
It’s not often extravagant hats and silk ascot ties are considered in style anymore, but an exception is every first Saturday in May — Kentucky Derby day. To honor the “Run for the Roses,” scheduled for the 137th year at Kentucky’s Churchill Downs May 7, the Absecon Lighthouse is hosting its first “Dashing Derby Day” fundraiser. The GLBT party starts 5pm and will include the traditional Derby drink, the mint julep, along with wine and beer, hors d’oeuvres, and complimentary roses. Tickets are $20 and will benefit the lighthouse, its museum and all its programming. “I’m on the board of the Greater Atlantic City GLBT Alliance and I think the lighthouse is a perfect host site for fun events of any kind,” says Jean Muchanic, executive director of the Lighthouse. “I thought the Kentucky Derby would be a good reason/event to invite the GLBT and its support community, as we are always trying to expand our outreach and expose this historical icon to new audiences.”
The Derby is the longest continuously running sports event in the nation, and is the first leg of the “Triple Crown” followed by the Preakness Stakes and the Belmont Stakes. Only 11 horses in history ever won the Triple Crown, the last being Affirmed in 1978.
The fee also includes a climb of the lighthouse’s tower (usually $7), which is tallest in the state and third tallest in the country. Race post time is 6:24pm and, of course, will be televised during the event. Reserve your spot at 449-1360, or online at abseconlighthouse.org. — Ray Schweibert
A.C. Tourism District Update
It was a blistering hot July day last summer when Gov. Chris Christie outlined his plan on the Atlantic City Boardwalk for a special tourism district in the city to be run by the state. But details were scarce that day, and if you haven’t been following the developments, you may not be aware of what is and isn’t in the district. Here’s a quick update. The Casino Reinvestment Development Authority was named as the controlling state agency over the district (shaded in green, above), overseeing development, safety, cleanliness and cosmetic enhancements and other issues. CRDA last month approved a plan that expands the district to now encompass Bader Field, the Boardwalk (from Ventnor to Gardner’s Basin), The Walk, Convention Center and Marina District. Mayor Lorenzo Langford and other city officials oppose the plan, especially the inclusion of the undeveloped Bader Field, saying the city has lost too much power over its own fate while residential areas are being ignored. However, the plan recently received an important endorsement from Bob McDevitt, head of the city’s largest casino workers union. CRDA is currently seeking community representatives to sit on the district’s advisory committee. — Mike Pritchard
Album of the Week
‘Hard Bargain’ (Nonesuch)
A legendary singer who once sang back-up for folk-rock icons like Gram Parsons and Bob Dylan, Emmylou Harris has carved out an extraordinary career in music, releasing several solo albums. The latest in a string of gorgeous, well-received albums, dating back to the Daniel Lanois produced Wrecking Ball (1995), the angelic voiced Harris’ new set is also one of her finest. Writing or co-writing most of the songs on the album, Harris sings about heartbreak, sadness and loss, but with a simplicity and aged perspective that also celebrates the journey of life. She also writes, in the song “The Road,” about her tour with the late Parsons, who, in a rare interview before his 1973 death, said Harris sings “just like a bird.” — Jeff Schwachter
Now that the turkey is carved, all thoughts turn to Christmas and, of course, lighthouse climbing. Absecon Lighthouse in Atlantic City has lined up a couple of holiday events for families that offer climbs of the lighthouse for a great look at Christmas decorations around the city.
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ATLANTIC CITY — Paint the town rainbow — the gay community is flocking full force back to the city that’s always turned on! Recently Atlantic City's first in-casino gay bar, Prohibition nightclub at Resorts, opened its doors to tremendous hoopla, and with that club’s success came the emergence of another GLBT-themed establishment — one that had been a pioneer during the first giant wave of gay clubs that helped spawn a thriving GLBT community in the seaside resort during the 1970s and 1980s. Can lightning strike twice? The Brass Rail — once part of the Club Tru complex created by John Schultz and partner Gary Hill — will have its formal grand re-opening in a weekend-long affair starting Friday, July 29, with an invite-only party from 7-9pm Friday. After 9pm the club opens to the public, and the fun doesn’t end until Monday, Aug. 1, at 6am. Presented by Stoli vodka, the gala will include an appearance by Claudia DuMont, who will be accompanied by the New York City Strippers, starting midnight Friday. On Saturday at midnight “Faresa” performs, and on Sunday from 9pm-1am guests will be treated to the outlandish antics of Lady La Belle — one of the popular contestants from the recently resurfaced...
Gov. Chris Christie signed legislation today to create an Atlantic City Tourism District and announced a breakthrough in the Revel Casino project.
The day after New Jersey Governor Chris Christie sent staffers to visit Atlantic City Mayor Langford, the mayor says he doesn't feel much different about the concerns he raised last week and that the ball is in the governor's court now.
On a sizzling hot Boardwalk Wednesday Governor Chris Christie did his best to say that the state was looking to help Atlantic City, not take over. “I’m here to extend the hand of partnership to the city,” Christie said. "We are entering into this public private partnership because we have to remake ourselves. We want to make Atlantic City a place where families and businesses want to be and want to come back to again and again.”
With summer almost here promoters Bill Cradle and Keith Werner hosted an underwear and swimwear fashion show for the GLBT community this past Tuesday at Redding's on Pacific Avenue.
The show was created in the early 1990s by former Atlantic City Councilman John Schultz and his partner, Gary Hill, and held at their old Studio Six nightclub, once considered the epicenter for gay life in Atlantic City.
The Greater Atlantic City GLBT Alliance, the organization will launch a new Web site on Thursday, Oct. 1.
May Is Month of the Burger