Atlantic City Council approved two Bader Field concerts for June 15-17 and June 23-24. On Wednesday, Jan. 18, it is anticipated council will approve two more concerts at the former municipal airport for Sept. 22-24 and Sept. 29-30.
The three-day jam band concert in June is expected to draw 30,000 fans each day. As of today, there has been no announcement of the band for the first concert. It is my opinion that the only jam band that would draw 30,000 per day is Phish.
The second June concert will be a rock event. It is expected the band performing will draw 50,000 fans per day. Again, it is my opinion that the only bands that could draw that many fans on two consecutive nights are the Rolling Stones, Radiohead, U2 and Bruce Springsteen.
The first of the September dates, a three-day event, will feature Americana music and is expected to draw as many as 25,000 fans per day. It is expected to be a festival that I believe will feature folk and country music.
The second September concert, a two-day event, will feature electronic music. This is the hottest genre of music now. It is very popular and will feature exciting music and incredible light shows. It is difficult to name prospective groups, as council has not yet approved the September events.
It is estimated that the economic impact to Atlantic City from the four events will be more than $100 million from the more than 300,000 people expected to attend. These events will boost Atlantic City’s rating as a world-class entertainment center.
Attack Nucky, but not A.C.
How many times have you heard someone say negative publicity truly hurts Atlantic City? You think the publicity about Atlantic City was bad over the past couple of years? The following will give you an insight into what it was like 82 years ago.
The headline “Bad publicity for Atlantic City only worry of boss” appeared above the following story in the Jan. 6, 1930, issue of the Atlantic City Press. Enoch “Nucky” Johnson was not concerned over any truthful attacks against him personally. His answer was his smile.
“The harmful publicity Atlantic City is receiving through the so-called expose of the alleged vice and corruption in this city by out-of-town newspapers is the only phase of the situation worrying Enoch (Nucky) L. Johnson, Republican leader.
“Johnson does not fear any attacks of the truthful nature that may be hurled against him personally, he asserts. For the past 27 years, during which time he was most active in official and political affairs, the Republican boss of Atlantic County has been under almost constant attack, he pointed out and he has learned in his school of politics of the trials and tribulations that go with party leadership are things to be met with a smile.
“But the insinuations against the city and the harm of the bad advertising is what really ‘gets under his skin’ he frankly admitted last night. With the resort catering to millions of visitors yearly, the Republican boss stated faith he had always stood against publicity harmful to the city as a whole especially when the attacks are launched by outside “interests” and on many occasions by “interests” with axes to grind.
“Johnson added that he personally was not and never has been a notoriety seeker and sounded a warning note that if he was to be assailed, those attacking him had ‘better make double sure of their ground.’
“The Republican boss refused to comment on what he thought was the reason for the alleged expose or where lay the hidden hand. He expressed doubt that it had anything to do with the forthcoming political battle between former U.S. Senator (Joseph) Frelinghuysen and Ambassador Dwight G. Morrow, and refused to discuss published reports that Mayor Frank Hague, of Jersey City, state Democratic boss, might have some connections in retaliation for the onslaught against him by the Case and the McAllister legislative investigating committee the past 2 years.”
This was an interesting story and one can see that the boss, Nucky Johnson, didn’t worry about the publicity for himself but was more concerned of what it might do to Atlantic City. There are many of us today who are concerned about some of the bad news stories we read about Atlantic City. We know they have caused people to have a bad perception of what goes on here. Unfortunately, or fortunately, whichever way you look at it, it is interesting to note how the lack of a “boss” of Atlantic City, such as Nucky, would respond to the negative stories of the present era.
Sports-bet bill has a past
The name of Senator Frelinghuysen brings back the awful memory of Rodney Frelinghuysen, who is now a member of the House of Representatives. He was formerly a member of the New Jersey General Assembly, where he served as chairman of the Appropriations Committee.
It was in 1992 that the bill for sports betting was introduced to the state Legislature. Sen. Bill Gormley shepherded it through the state Senate and it then came to the Assembly. Much to the chagrin of Assembly Speaker Garabed “Chuck” Haytaian, the first committee to consider the bill approved it.
The speaker then sent the bill to the Appropriations Committee because he knew the chairman, Frelinghuysen, would not allow the bill to come out of his committee. There was a federal time limit for approval of the bill. The bill never came up on the floor, and thereby New Jersey lost the opportunity to vote on a sports-betting bill. If the bill had been approved, it would have been placed on a referendum for the public to vote on changing the Constitution to allow sports betting.
By the way, the Republicans had control of the Assembly and were concerned that Christine Todd Whitman, their candidate for governor, would not be elected if the sports-betting bill was on the ballot. They felt it would bring more Democrats out to vote and they would defeat Whitman. They were right, as she won by a only little more than 1,000 votes.
This kept us from having sports betting in Atlantic City, in 1992.
Pinky's Corner appears every Thursday in The Press. The Pinky's Corner radio show airs 4 to 6 p.m. Mondays through Fridays on WOND 1400-AM. His TV show, "WMGM Presents Pinky," airs 7:30 p.m. Saturdays on NBC TV40. E-mail Pinky at: email@example.com.