Monday, September 13, 2021

Another one gone


I had first learned about it a few days ago, and earlier today I saw a newspaper article about it from a few day ago.  Another local landmark is closing- Don's Pizza King.  It's in Belmar on Main Street, adjacent to Pyanoe Plaza, across from 9th Avenue.  They sold whole pies and slices, plus all the usual Italian dishes that you'd find at any local pizza place.  I considered it to be average- not bad, but not great.  I first went there in the early 90's. on a day trip down the shore, along with a college friend.  There were a lot of places in town she liked.  The record stores were good, but now long gone.  The Pizza King is still there, but not for long. It opened around the time I was born, but as with many older places, the founders are ready to retire.  In the article, the owner complained about not being able to get help, but that's a problem in a lot of places, a combination of Covid related behaviors, and that most businesses prefer to pay low wages and a lot of workers want more.  I haven't been there in a while, mostly because there were enough better places closer to where I lived, in my various homes around the area.  

I don't know if the concerts are still going on in the Plaza.  For years, there were weekly music shows in that plaza, and Don's set up picnic tables and chairs where people could order, sit, and eat their Italian meals while enjoying live music.  Once I went to see and photograph one of the shows for the BAC blog, and saw a large group of our founders enjoying a meal.  I stopped by to greet them, and pointed out the dark indigo sky to the west, generally a sign that a giant thunderstorm is approaching.  One of the party put down my suggestion, saying he had an ap that told him the rain wouldn't come.  I wished them luck and started walking to my car, parked in the spaces on 10th.  Felt the first drop when I was a few feet from my car, and once I was inside, it started to pour.  If those shows are no longer happening, probably not helping the business.

Several years ago I was doing the above boardwalk print, the subject being the boardwalk at night.  As a kid we always went at night, ate dinner at home, and could ride the rides and play the games as the sun went down.  All the boardwalks have pizza places and I wanted my night boardwalk to have one as well.   I wanted a nice short name for my place and chose "Don's" despite the Belmar (which no longer has any amusement things on its boardwalk) place, not because of it.  Over the years I've had a few viewers tell me they figured they are related, but they are not.  All the signs are quite plausible for boardwalks, but completely made up.  Same goes for all the stores and games.  Some people have told me they've been to this boardwalk, but since it only exists in my head, I know they never have.  


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