Iconic Locations & Venues We Miss in Asbury Park


If you’ve been to Asbury Park during the weekend this off-season, we can say one thing: Asbury is back in business. With many new events going on along the beach and downtown, and the opening of the new Asbury Hotel, the comeback has finally paid off. With everything that’s new in town, there are some things that we still genuinely miss. Here are a few things from our past that we wish were still around today.

The Old-Fashioned Movie Theaters

Baronet Theater

Source: flickr.com/photos/hyunlab/

There’s something unique about an old-school theater. Many of the old theaters that used to operate in AP opened during the 1920s, before being shuttered in the 1980s. According to the Asbury Park Press, there were five historical movie theaters within Asbury Park: the Mayfair, the Savoy, the Lyric, the Baronet, the St. James, and the
Paramount. Out of these, only the Paramount still hosts movies on the weekends, while the Showroom is a newer theater in downtown that hosts special engagements.

Palace Amusements

If you’ve ever been to somewhere like iPlay America in Freehold, that’s the best comparison today to what Palace Amusements was like. Located on the corner of Kingsley and Asbury Avenues, it opened its doors in 1888 and closed forever in 1988, after declaring bankruptcy. It featured a beautiful hand carved carousel, arcade games, and amusement rides that were open year-round. You can still find the original photo booth from Palace Amusements today inside the front entrance of the Silverball Museum and Arcade.

The Upstage Club

The Upstage Club

Source: The Asbury Park Sun

Located at 702 Cookman Ave. was another iconic rock club called The Upstage. This club was just as iconic as The Stone Pony, and was a frequent spot to catch acts like Steven Van Zandt, Bruce Springsteen, and more. The first floor of the building served as retail space, and guests who wanted to see a show had to go up a narrow staircase to enter. The club used to host two shows a night, and sometimes wouldn’t let out until 5 a.m. The space is currently up for auction and could become a bar or restaurant in the future.

Asbury Lanes

Asbury Lanes

Source: Instagram (@asburylanes)

Fortunately, this is only a temporary addition to our list. We do miss some of the iconic punk bands and unique cover bands that played here. It also played host to the Punk Rock Bowling Festival, which moved this year to The Stone Pony’s Summer Stage. It was also home to the Bouncing Souls “Home for the Holidays” shows during the holiday season, where the band would play three consecutive nights. It is currently going under an extensive renovation, as you might have been able to tell by the mural painted on the outside of the lanes. There is currently no date for when the Lanes will reopen.