What a great evening I had last night! The goal was to see the Beach Boys at The Great Auditorium in Ocean Grove, NJ, and that goal was accomplished. But let me rewind a bit. Prior to the 8:00 concert, the group of 10, needed to find a place to dine.....and it was decided that we'd go to Dorian's On The Beach which is a few steps away from the Asbury Park southern end, casino pavillion. We came without wine for dinner, since Ocean Grove is a dry town, but discovered that Dorian's is a "BYOB." No problem. We had terrific views of the crashing waves, and the food was great. Not knowing what to expect, we were suprised when our dinners came and the seafood was not only prepared perfectly--salmon was nicely grilled; scallops were large and tender--they were eye appealing as well. A few of us had the Sorella Salad (sorella means "sister" in Italian), and it was a unique combination of apples, pears, gorgonzola cheese, sautee'd onions, raisins, and strawberries on field greens with a strawberry vinaigrette. My friend, Joanne, chose to add grilled chicken to her salad; I chose grilled salmon. The service was cheery and attentive; we decided it was worth the trip to make a return visit. For a boardwalk restaurant, we were all pleasantly surprised. I've provided a link below from Trip Advisor, which shows reviews on Dorian's from some previous visitors.
Ocean Grove, NJ is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and is steeped in a religious background that still exists in this beautiful, Victorian building-laced community. I had never been to The Great Auditorium, (a magnifienct wooden structure that conjures up visions of Noah's Ark--built by hand with wood and steel in 1894), and it proved to be quite an experience for all of us. When the building was erected with the original bench seating, it could accomodate 10,000 worshipers! With its present, stadium-style seats, the concert was at capactiy: 6,500. Quite an incredible showing for the "Boys." Really, with Mike Love being the only original, original, we called them the "Boy." The audience was treated to their "....sometimes, occasionally, very famous.....taking time off from rehearsing for Bye-Bye Birdie on Broadway.....talented actor and musician," John Stamos. Yes, the ladies LOVED him! But, he's quite a talented drummer and guitarist, and he remarked how thrilled and awestruck he is to be playing with the Beach Boys.
Oh, did I happen to mention that the auditorium is not air conditioned? Let me tell you. This Italian lady requires temps between 68 and 70 degrees. Above 70, I'm cranky. But, last night, in the spirit of a great concert and good friends, I somehow survived the heat. If those musicians could stand on that stage with the glare of the lights, singing and moving around with their instruments, I could deal with the lack of cool air. There was a prayer delivered before the show, followed by the audience participation in the singing of the National Anthem accompanied by the magestic sound of the Hope-Jones pipe organ. All-in-all, a unique and fun evening.
As mentioned, here are a few links to sites with some great photos and info on Ocean Grove and Dorian's. On the "Little Views" link, one of the photos shows Dorian's. It's a white building with red awnings.