Many times when you see pictures of people who are visiting Las Vegas, they are in front of the sign that says “Fabulous Las Vegas.” These pictures are taken home and shown to friends. Clark County (Nev.) officials are moving forward with an $800,000 project to upgrade the area around the sign, providing safety and access. The landmark sign has stood on the Strip’s south end since 1959.
Unfortunately, Atlantic City does not have anything of that magnitude. There is a lighthouse that is unkempt on the Black Horse Pike and no place for people to take pictures. The White Horse Pike has no sign signifying when cars enter Atlantic City. There is a sign at the end of the Atlantic City Expressway, but nothing of any significance.
A sign for the end of the expressway could be designed that features a touch of our varied sights for people to visit. It should include the Boardwalk, beach, ocean, Absecon Island Lighthouse and beautiful skyline. We have many distinguished artists who could come up with something like this. We direly need to let people know when they’re in Atlantic City and where they can take a picture showing their family and friends that they visited.
There is a necessity of having varied sites on the Boardwalk for people to take pictures. That was the reason for the “Boardwalk Empire” facade. Ask those who are on the Boardwalk frequently — the police, the ambassadors and those who run or walk on the boards. They will tell you there always are people taking pictures of that facade. Without a doubt, it is the most popular picture site in Atlantic City.
With the return of the Miss America Pageant, it is time to move the Bert Parks monument that now stands in front of the Sheraton Atlantic City Convention Center Hotel to the front of Boardwalk Hall. The statue was placed in its current spot because the headquarters of the Miss America Organization was there. It is no longer there and, in fact, no longer is in Atlantic City.
This interesting statue features a crown in the hands of Parks and allows for people to stand under it and have their pictures taken as a memento of the act of the crowning of Miss America. It truly belongs on the Boardwalk, and hopefully will be moved there.
There is ongoing concern about who owns the streetlights in Atlantic City. This column has long lamented the lack of proper lighting on Atlantic Avenue between Ohio and Missouri avenues. The corner of Michigan and Atlantic Avenue is the busiest street in the city, but also is one of the darkest.
A mapping of all the streetlights in Atlantic City currently is taking place. This will determine who is responsible for the repair and maintenance of the lights. It needs to be expedited so the city will be a bright community that’s safer for everyone.
Once again, the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority will institute Capital Development Grants and Entertainment Grants for 2013. In the past years of the Entertainment Grants, there have been some outstanding programs provided for both residents and visitors. The specifics of attaining these grants may be obtained at the CRDA offices.
Miss America 1998
Miss America 1998 Kate Schindle may be seen at 7:30 p.m. Saturday on my show on WMGM TV 40. Schindle said she was thrilled to know that Miss America will be back where she belongs in Atlantic City. She has been in contact with many of the other former Miss Americas, and they also expressed their delight in knowing Miss America is coming home.
They all asked about the parade. Wouldn’t it be nice to invite the Miss Americas who were selected in Las Vegas to be in the parade? Let’s put them in rolling chairs instead of a bus.
Cursive in schools
Last week, a call to my show from a parent informed me that his son, who is 13, did not know how to sign his name. He learned that cursive, or handwriting, as most of us will remember, is not being taught in some schools. Why not? He said he was teaching his son to write.
It is understood the many young people today have all kinds of electronic equipment with which they can send a message. The questions that were asked stated what happens if the electricity goes out and the batteries are dead and how do they sign their name? With an X? How do you differentiate one X from another?
Years ago, there were handwriting teachers. Students were given a book that showed the proper manner in which one should write. Children were urged to practice this at home, and parents were asked to oversee it. There are many changes in the education of our children today, but this should not be one of them.
Please let me know your feelings about this issue. It is urgent that children of today learn how to write. That’s why they make pens and pencils and other means of writing.
Most miserable cities
It is sad to learn that two South Jersey cities are included on Forbes magazine’s list of America’s most miserable cities for 2013. Camden comes in at number 13 and Atlantic City ranks 15th in the magazine’s list of 20 cities. You will be surprised to know that New York City is number 10. Does that mean Camden and Atlantic City are better than New York?
“The U.S. Census Bureau has named Camden as the most impoverished city in the country, with 42.5 percent of residents living below the poverty line,” the article states.
The article quotes Gov. Chris Christie as saying, in 2010, that “Atlantic City is dying.” Forbes notes that casino revenues in Atlantic City are in a “downward spiral,” which didn’t help a recent unemployment rate of 14.4 percent.
Forbes looked at nine factors in considering the 200 largest metropolitan areas, including violent crime, unemployment, mortgage foreclosures, income and property taxes, and home prices, as well as weather and commuting time. There were more than 60 comments from readers about this article in the magazine. Unfortunately, many of them were negative about Atlantic City.
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. Email Pinky at: firstname.lastname@example.org.