Asbury Park was founded as a Christian retreat in the 1800s by a man named James A. Bradley. It remained one of the most popular family resorts in the United States until 1970, when race riots burned down much of the downtown area. Soon radicals, beatniks, hippies, and musicians moved in, making Asbury Park a very diverse place. In 1988, the city had about enough of its new cultures, and a plan to redevelop the entire waterfront went into affect. Most businesses were ordered to be closed, so the boardwalk, casino, hotels and amusements all closed for the redevelopment. High rise hotels and condos began construction, but were then abandoned before they could be finished, leaving the waterfront an odd mix of abandoned buildings and rotting construction. The city declined in the 1990s, after almost all businesses failed. Crime rose, and Asbury Park had higher crime than any other town in Monmouth County. However, in 1998, Shep Pettibone converted an abandoned Hotel into a gay nightclub, drawing thousands of gay travelers to Asbury Park. Every Friday night the city became the only place on the East Coast that could rival Fire Island! Gay couples began buying cheap homes, abandoned bars and nightclubs, closed storefronts downtown, and abandoned pavilions on the boardwalk, and restoring them to they way they once were. Today, Asbury Park is experiencing a vibrant rebirth!
• Paradise Nightclub, 101 Asbury Avenue - Dance club with outdoor pool, sundeck, piano bar, and lobby lounge. Big gay community, but "straight" people can come too.
• Cruisin' the Circuit, 911 Kingsley Avenue - Gay oriented dance club.
• Anybody's, 230 Cookman Avenue - Gay bar.
• The Stone Pony, 913 Ocean Avenue - The World Famous bar, with an amazing music venue .
Adapted from WikiTravel under the Wiki License
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