Shocker: Toast closes for a month
One of Asbury Park's most popular eateries is closing its doors for more than a month. Toast, the Cookman Avenue hotspot where weekend patrons regularly wait for more than an hour to get in, is giving up a month's revenue and putting dozens out of work for a "vacation [and] renovations," according to signs at the restaurant. Its Facebook page says Toast will reopen "the week of Feb. 11." The Light of Day music festival listed Toast as the site of its "goodbye breakfast" on Jan. 18. "When was the last time Pete & Elda's closed for a month?" wondered a local food fan, referring to the highly successful Neptune City restaurant which built an addition increasing its size by more than 25 percent without closing for a single day.
Council adjusts huge parking fee hike
Restuarant owners in Bradley Beach and other Monmouth County towns are still licking their chops even though Asbury Park has capped Cookman Avenue parking rates at $2 an hour to park on Cookman Avenue. Parking on the city's busiest downtown street would cost $2 an hour from 5 pm to midnight and all day Saturday and Sunday.
Asbury Park named 10th best worldwide travel destination
Travel and Leisure magazine says Asbury Park is the 10th best travel destination in the world for 2016. The magazine notes progress already achieved in the resort city and previews ambitious future plans. Asbury Park is higher on the list than Rio de Janeiro (30), Costa Rica (32) and Casablanca (43).
Hotel plans May opening
Asbury Park's first new hotel in 50 years is expected to open in May. The Asbury is coming to life in the former Salvation Army residential building at Fifth Avenue and Kingsley Street.
Main Street madness abandoned
The state has decided not to narrow Route 71 in Asbury Park to two lanes. The idea was opposed by city officials, public safety professionals, and a local weekly newspaper which called the plan "idiotic." Mayor John Moor says the city "can live with" new proposals for modest improvements made recently by the state.