Thanks to Ben Budick, Class of 1967

January 16, 2008

Hi Skip,

Love the new photo essay that was posted on the website....I think I'll be spending the rest of my life looking for the Rockaway we all experienced....I still live on the beach here in Florida but it ain't Rockaway..The closest I ever found was the boardwalk at Asbury Park...and as legendary as Springsteen has made it, Rockaway in it's prime was MUCH better....It's a shame that while growing up there very few of us realized what a unique and wonderful place it was...If we had perhaps we would have
fought the stupidity that brought it down.

What's really scary is when I was on the boardwalk, especially between Beach 35th and 36th, I could see ghosts. I could hear the bells from Lenny's fascination, the electric buzz and the loudspeaker from Paul's Bumper cars.  I could almost smell the hot dog grill from Sam's and Jerry's...I worked for Jerry Hershkovitz for 2 summers in the mid 60's..I actually sold and on some rainy afternoons helped make the damn knishes!...All the people and all the memories just rushed back...

I'm a writer and a novel about Rockaway in the late 60's has been floating around in my head for some time now...I'll be playing a little fast and loose with the true chronology but what I want to do is set it in the last year before the city started tearing down the beach area...and we all knew that THIS was the last Summer....

What I really like about your site is that for years I was mourning the Rockaway as we knew it and I really thought I was alone. There's a sort of comfort in knowing I'm not alone and not nuts!...

Thank you Skip

Ben Budick    Email Address:  

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Ben Budick and Lynda Auerbach, Class of 1967 - Beach 35th Street on the Boardwalk

On the Beach

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