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Greetings from Asbury Park

Boardwalkrides

Documentary filmmaker Christina EliopoulosGreetings from Asbury Park will be shown this Sunday at the Baronet Theater in Asbury Park. The documentary will be followed with a panel discussion by Helen Chantal-Pike, author of Asbury Park’s Glory Days and Daniel Wolff author of 4th of July, Asbury Park: A History of the Promised Land.

The event is being sponsored by ArtsCAP (Arts Coalition of Asbury Park). I first heard about the event when I had lunch a couple of weeks ago with ArtsCAP President, Mark McDonald. On the one hand, I think the idea of showing the documentary at the Baronet is right on. On the other hand, I think the fact that events like this are so under-promoted is a travesty that fosters a false sense of disinterestedness or apathy in the community. People are very interested in events like this, they just don’t know about them.

I spoke with about six different people who I thought would have or should have been aware of this upcoming event or at least the existence of the documentary and while all of them are really looking forward to attending the event, my conversation with them was the first they’d heard about the event or the documentary. This type of disconnection between citizens being able to express their interest in, learn about or participate with their communities is both a cause and a symptom of fractured social bonds so prevalent in New Jersey. I don’t think this type of breakdown is unique to NJ, I just think our population density, massive disparity of socio-economic status and very (very!) consumer-oriented culture exasperate the fractionalization of NJ’s communities. In any event, this is a solvable problem. Getting people to come out to events like this is one way to bring some cohesion to our communities. So, come on out.

Mark told me via email that ArtsCAP will be accepting donations at the door. More about the event here.

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