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Asbury Park’s Ancient Swimwear Ban on Boardwalk Draws Ire

Imagine getting a ticket just for wearing a bathing suit on the boardwalk in Asbury Park, well you technically can and a former city councilwoman wants to see it enforced.

Asbury Park boardwalk
Asbury Park boardwalk (Facebook)

Louise Murray is the head of the Asbury Park Republican Party and she appealed to the city council to enforce the ordinance which was adopted over 40 years ago.

Specifically the ordinance states “No person clad in bathing attire shall be on the boardwalk or the public walks adjacent thereto.”

Murray tells The Star-Ledger she’s worried that allowing boardwalk bar and restaurant patrons to wear skimpy attire threatens Asbury’s “classy” image.

Deputy Mayor John Loffredo tells the newspaper it’s up to businesses to set dress codes and the city doesn’t have the resources to enforce the ban.

Beachgoers on the boardwalk were overwhelmingly opposed to the concept of a fine for being in a bathing suit.

One female swimmer pointed out “the whole point of being at the beach is being in a bikini” noting that “it’s 2012.”

Swimmers noted even if they wanted to dress up after their swim, there are no facilities on the sand that would let them do so.

Changing rooms that once were connected to the beach by tunnels and catwalks disappeared years ago.

One beachgoer pointed out “that if they [Murray and ordinance supporters] an issue with that people are going are going to get naked and walk around on the beach and I’m sure that will be a lot better than a bathing suit.”

Gary Mattola president of property investments Madison Marquette, owners of the vast majority of the boardwalk’s businesses says the proposal to enforce the ordinance would never work in Asbury.

“This is the Asbury Park boardwalk, this is the most creative original creative place in New Jersey, we accept everything.”

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