”My Happy Place” is a weekly Press series in which local notables take us on a tour of a favorite spot in their home.

ATLANTIC CITY — Tom Forkin, chairman of the Atlantic City Alcohol Beverage Control Board, purchased a home two years ago known as the old rum runner house in the Bungalow Park neighborhood.

Forkin’s “Happy Place” is his top deck, which overlooks the back bay and Historic Gardner’s Basin.

“I think it’s great. It’s a very nice view. You can see the boats go in and out. We do our paddleboard school right off the dock here. ... If you tried it in the ocean, you would get rocked around a lot. Out here, it’s like a lake,” said Forkin, 56, who has a circular glass table and a couple chairs on his deck. “We have some of the most beautiful back bays in the country.”

Forkin wanted to live in the home he now owns for years, but one of his neighbors, John Devlin Sr., 82, a lifelong resort resident, knows more about the history of his house than he does.

During the Prohibition era of the 1920s, illegal alcohol used to be delivered to the dock underneath Forkin’s house. Gangster Al Capone and the resort’s political boss Enoch Lewis “Nucky” Johnson used to meet up Forkin’s house, Devlin said.

Those meetings were not violence-filled like something out of the old HBO series “Boardwalk Empire.” They were all about money, and business problems would be smoothed over, Devlin said.

A room Forkin, director of the AC Surf & SUP School, now uses as his downstairs bar was the place where Capone and Johnson used to meet.

“The downstairs bar, we hand-sanded it. We repainted and re-varnished it. The house was literally built in 1920,” Forkin said.

In close proximity to the outside deck is the dining/TV room. It used to be a dance hall back in the day, Forkin said. The chairs that surround the dining room table come from the Foundation House in the now-defunct House of Blues that was inside the Showboat Atlantic City, he said.

The dining room table is about as old as the house, but it didn’t come with the residence, Forkin said.

Forkin’s house is very open, which allows for a nice breeze to blow through during the warmer months, but being right on the water means feeling the direct impact of an unforgiving winter and paying as much as $1,900 in gas-heating bills during the coldest months.

“I have loved this house since I was a little kid,” said Forkin, who was a member of the resort’s Beach Patrol and a former Holy Spirit High School teacher in Absecon.

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