Wow! What a wonderful evening of entertainment provided by “The Black Pirate,” the 1926 silent film that helped pioneer Technicolor, and Stephen Ball, the outstanding organist who accompanied the film on the Kimball organ.
Organizers had planned for fewer than 200 people to attend, but 467 people, most from the Atlantic City area, paid $15 each to see this delightful, truly entertaining program.
The funds will be used to help restore the Midmer-Losh organ, the world’s largest organ, that resides in the main auditorium of Boardwalk Hall. I was pleasantly surprised when I walked into the hall’s Adrian Phillips Ballroom and saw that almost every seat was taken. The event included a table with boxes of popcorn beside a sign: “Free popcorn.”
The crowd was truly ready for the antics of the pirates and their leader, the hearty Black Pirate, who stole everything of value on the ship before burning all of those on the ship.
Douglas Fairbanks showed his acrobatic abilities as he climbed to the top of the sails and sliced them in half with his sword as he was lowered to the deck. The crowd’s response was loud applause for his antics. They also laughed at the appropriate times and simply enjoyed the film. One never noticed the accompaniment of the organ, because it was so well put together between the action and the music.
The show was so well received that talk has begun about showing one silent film per month throughout the summer. There is also discussion about showing the silent film version of the “Phantom of the Opera” during Halloween week.
A busy weekend
For the third consecutive year, the beer festival outdid the numbers of the previous year. The unofficial count was more than 20,000 in attendance to enjoy the vast varieties of beer.
The Garden State Film Festival drew thousands of film buffs for their first presentation in Atlantic City. Diane Raver, who brought this project to Atlantic City, was delighted and thrilled.
On a recent call to her to verify the numbers, she could not stop saying how wonderful it was to be in a such a welcoming city. Everyone from the valets to the technical crews were praised for their cooperation and enthusiasm.
Major film stars made themselves available to talk with people and have their pictures taken. Those same stars were amazed at how exciting Atlantic City was. They raved about the Boardwalk, the shopping and their reception.
There was a wonderful selection of films both full-size and short. The films’ writers, directors, technical crew and performers attended and spoke with the audience at the conclusion of their films. Many who came from outside of New Jersey were impressed by the resort’s cleanliness and safety.
The day began with a large crowd running a marathon on the Boardwalk.
Funding has been approved for a Boardwalk to be constructed from Caspian Avenue to Gardner’s Basin.
This will give bicyclists, walkers and runners an opportunity to go from one end of the Boardwalk to the other end. A grant is expected to provide for the construction of a restaurant destroyed by Hurricane Sandy. A portion of the project is planned to include a museum focusing on previous storms in Atlantic City.
It is anticipated that Global Spectrum, operators of the Boardwalk Hall and the Atlantic City Convention Center, will bring in a circus within a few weeks, a Disney program and Sesame Street Live, as well as additional family-type programs. Several planned, big-name, summer concerts also will draw huge crowds.
Four bids have been presented for the resurfacing of Pacific Avenue. I believe one of the four will be selected by the end of the month, and that work could begin in late May. It has been a long time coming.
Thanks to the CRDA’s master plan and the efforts of this columnist, Tropicana Casino Hotel soon will be shining with the addition of bollard lighting on the Boardwalk and the relighting of their building.
The groundbreaking of BET Enterprise’s 16 retail units and restaurants located in front of the Boardwalk Hall’s West Hall will take place next Thursday. This will help to fill in the area that has been an ugly site since the tearing down of the Trump World’s Fair Casino.
Please take a look at the Boardwalk Hall’s West Hall on Florida Avenue and see the new murals. The beautiful renderings are a delightful addition to that side of the Boardwalk Hall.
It is expected to be announced soon that Class II police officers have been hired for a 40-hour week. This will help to bolster the number of police officers on duty in the Atlantic City police force. I also believe Chief Henry White will announce that the first neighborhood police substation will be located in the Stanley Holmes Village.
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.