Inspiration

Walkers Among Us: The New Jersey Zombie Walk, Asbury Park, NJ

I think its pretty safe to say I have a thing for Zombies

Between my signature cookie, The Dapper Zombie and my love for AMC's Walking Dead I'd say I def have Zombie fever!

Between my signature cookie, The Dapper Zombie and my love for AMC’s Walking Dead I’d say I definitely have Zombie fever!

Last weekend a Guinness World record breaking amount of zombies descended on the crazy, cool city of Asbury Park, NJ and I couldn’t have been more excited to witness it. I have fallen in love with Asbury’s gritty, artsy, quirky originality… it has quickly become one of our places to hang out… so a city wide zombie walk? Obviously!

This was Asbury’s 6th Annual Zombie Walk and this year, they beat the Guinness World Record with 9,592 walkers walking! WOW! As a fan of zombies and of the Walking Dead (which returns this Sunday- yes!!!), I could not wait to witness this event in person… KF and I leashed up the dogs, and took a sidewalk spot on Cookman Ave to watch… As the sun began to fall from the sky the zombies began  their walk…

As we walked across the footbridge from Ocean Grove, I couldn't help noting the perfect weather for a Zombie Walk.

As we walked across the footbridge from Ocean Grove, I couldn’t help noting the perfect weather for a Zombie Walk.

A few zombies came through before the official start of the parade... love the normal clothing/ makeup only thing.

A few zombies came through before the official start of the parade… love the normal clothing/ makeup only thing- almost as creepy as full costume

All zombie participants are encouraged to stay in character... this lady was great!

All zombie participants are encouraged to stay in character… this woman was great!

A zombie doctor and rollergirl

A zombie doctor and rollergirl.

the view down Cookman Ave

Cookman Avenue, Asbury Park, NJ

Ooops! Its hard to stay in character with such adorable dogs watching the parade... loved their makeup and the irony of this shot.

Ooops! Its hard to stay in character with such adorable dogs watching the parade… loved these besties’ makeup and the irony of this shot!

Back to scary stuff- zombie police officer!

Back to scary stuff- zombie security guard! Ahhhh!

These zombie kiddos got a lot of attention! Wow!

These zombie kiddos got a lot of attention! Wow! Super creative and a little crazy! The person next to me said “it’s so wrong, its right!” Zombie parade perfection!

Zombie surfer walking by a zombie mermaid- so perfect for Asbury!

Zombie surfer walking by a zombie mermaid- the perfect ode to Asbury Park!

A zombie bride & groom... brides were very popular

A zombie bride & groom… in fact zombie brides were very popular! I mean, how often do you get to wear a big white dress right? 😉

Also popular, zombie doctors... I found these guys so scary that I backed up when I saw them coming...

Also super popular, zombie doctors… I found these guys so scary that I backed up when I saw them coming…

...but their makeup was so amazing I stepped back up to get this shot. Amazing! Amazing character acting as well!

…but their makeup was so amazing I stepped back up to get this shot. Amazing! Amazing character acting as well!

Speaking of acting, this zombie did this crawl walk the entire way and it was a lot more freaky looking in person! Very exorcist!

Speaking of acting, this zombie girl did this crawl walk the entire way and it was a lot more freaky looking in person! Very exorcist! (P.S. I like their matching pants!)

I was so into it, KF insisted I take a photo with a zombie... just as he said it this Dapper Zombie in a white dinner jacket walked by. We asked him to pose, he growled for real and we took the shot. Hope was not happy!

As the parade wrapped up, KF insisted I take a photo with a zombie… just as he said it this amazing, real life “Dapper Zombie” in a white dinner jacket walked by. We asked him to pose for a photo, he growled for real and we took the shot. Hope was not happy and I was a little alarmed myself! Amazing!

The parade comes to an end in Press Plaza. There I found this amazing zombie version of Tilly, Asbury Park's mascot.

The parade comes to an end in Press Plaza. There I found this amazing, super scary zombie version of Tilly, the Wonderbar mascot that has seemingly become a mascot for all of Asbury Park. Also note the amazing “ALIVE INSIDE” signage hung on the roof in the background.

The ___marching band kicked off the finale with an instrumental cover of Thriller and then the band played the full version...

NYC’s Lesbian and Gay Marching Band kicked off the end of festivities with an instrumental cover of Thriller and right after, the So Watt Band played an amazing, live full version!

...and the zombies, led by this amazing prom queen began to dance! This is Thriller... Thriller night...

The zombies that had gathered here, led by this amazing zombie prom queen began to dance! But not just any dance, Thriller! “This is Thriller… Thriller night…”

...and they got into it!

…and they got into it! “Creatures crawl in search of blood . To terrorize your neighborhood…”

After watching the group Thriller dance (so FUN), I vowed to take part in this fun event next year. Who’s with me?

On our way home, I heard a strange sound behind us...

On our walk home, around the corner and down the street, I heard a strange sound behind us… Ahhh! (right after I snapped this shot we all started cracking up)

What a great event! Not only did the Asbury Park Zombies break the world record but many zombies donated blood and MoveForHunger.org collected 3,000 pounds of food! I couldn’t help but taking some inspiration from the parade home with me…

Let's see what zombie cookies pop up next!

Let’s see what zombie cookies pop up next!

I hope some of these photos inspire you to decorate some Dapper Zombie cookies of your own (see our video on how-to-ice him at SweetDaniB TV) or wait for our latest Zombie cookie how-to’s coming up soon! If you are a zombie fan, don’t forget to tune in Sunday night for the Walking Dead for more inspiration! We can’t wait for next year’s NJ Zombie Walk! For more info on this spooktacular event, click here. This is shaping up to be a great October! Mwwhaahaa! Xo Dani

 

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Seaside Strong

Seaside Boardwalk, July 2013

Seaside Boardwalk, July 2013

We couldn’t have been happier or more excited to return to Seaside Boardwalk this summer. On a hot July day, my brother, Nicole, Cecelia and I took the long way down and drove through the shore towns we visited and rented of our youth… Normandy Beach, Lavallette, Ortley Beach… Some towns were back, others sort of back, while others are sadly still struggling. Seaside fell into the “sort of back” category. The boardwalk was open and had a pretty good crowd going even though it was a sweltering, mid week day but many residents are not back into their homes and many are dealing with insurance issues. Casino Pier (the pier with the rides that had planned to be restored after Sandy) was not yet open upon our visit and security at that entrance was tight.

The boardwalk looking new and refreshed. You can see the cranes in the background working on Casino Pier to restore the rides.

The boardwalk looking new and refreshed. You can see the cranes in the background working on Casino Pier to restore the rides.

We were just happy to be there and “walk on the boards”. This was was Cece’s first time at the boardwalk. She is very curious and loves to look around. Luckily people watching is one of our favorite things to do on the boardwalk. (That and eating.)

I will most likely get in trouble for posting this but here is my brother and Cece doing a little boardwalk dance in front of one of the arcades.

My brother and Cece doing a little boardwalk dance in front of one of the arcades

It was just like visiting a familiar old friend who you haven’t seen in a while but you don’t skip a beat. The stands were there with their array of prizes from giant stuffed animals to Coach handbags (real?)… the seediness was still there, the stores with their over the top, Snooki style T-shirts (We had to buy C a Seaside onesie!), psychics, places to get pierced… I stopped Midway, the legendary sausage stand to buy a soda and told them I was happy they were back. The workers behind the counter smiled.

I have always loved the old fashioned signage atop some of the seaside buildings.

I have always loved the old fashioned signage atop some of the seaside buildings.

One of Nicole’s favorite places as a kid was Maruca’s Tomato Pies. I was excited to visit one of the places that made Seaside boardwalk that old familiar friend to her. We split a slice and Cece had some of the crust.

A pizza slice from Maruca's. They put the cheese down first then swirl the sauce on top. So yum! The perfect boardwalk slice!

A pizza slice from Maruca’s. They put the cheese down first then swirl the sauce on top of the cheese- this makes their “signature swirl”… So yum! The perfect boardwalk slice!

On our way out Nicole played the squirt gun game and won C a little bear. We took photos in one of the arcade photobooths… one of our favorite traditions.

Woohoo! Boardwalk fun at the squirt gun game.

Woohoo! Boardwalk fun at the squirt gun game!

As much as I wanted an ice cream from Kohr’s I couldn’t fit it. It was one of those heat wave days of this past summer and the sun was in and out. (I find it hard to eat in that kind of heat!) On our way back to the car we said we’d be back for the rides and the ice cream.

As a person who believes in Karma and ‘doing good brings good’… the reality is, there is an unexplainable area of “why do things like this happen” grey. On September 12th, an electrical fire that began beneath the boardwalk at Kohr’s ended up burning down more than 50 businesses, completely destroying Funtown Pier. Our hearts go out to those business owners, most who had just re built from Hurricane Sandy. Approximately 1/2 of the boardwalk remains and as for the other 1/2 Governor Christie said, once again, ‘We are going to get back on our feet‘.
In an article on NJ.com, Joe Maruca, owner of the famous pizza place where we had just shared a slice sums it up similarly… “This is life,” he said. “I beat cancer two years ago, so I can deal with this. We had a fire in 1980, and we rebuilt. This is life.”
They are Jersey Strong after all. Well said, Mr. Maruca!
If you know of any shops that would like to carry our Jersey Strong cookies please email us at info@sweetdanib.com

If you know of any stores or shops that would like to carry our Jersey Strong cookies, we have and are still happy to donate profits from this cookie to the Jersey Shore rebuilding efforts. Please email us at info@sweetdanib.com

Our hearts go out all those who lost their businesses that day.  The businesses that remain open can also use our support. Take a ride down, have sausage sandwich (Midway was spared) an ice cream (one Kohr’s stand remains), visit the arcades, ham it up in the photobooths, ride the rides at Casino Pier… This Jersey Girl knows “Down the shore, everything is alright”… and Seaside will be back and we will be there. SEASIDE STRONG, Jersey Strong.  Xo Dani

A photo I took of The Funtown Pier from my bike, 2010, Seaside, NJ

A photo I took of the Funtown Pier from my bike, 2010, Seaside, NJ

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