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Sunday, November 4, 2012

New Jersey State Open & Superstorm Sandy

Last weekend we attended the New Jersey State Open, hosted by Roxanne and Susan Adary. The event took place at the Golden Nugget Hotel and Casino in the heart of Atlantic City. Local DC area dancers who attended included:

Anna Boyd
Dana Coppola
Sophia D'Angelo
Kirill Gorjatsev
Roxi Holloway  
Anna Kabul
Phil Schaeman
Daria Zotova

We drove up to Atlantic City on Friday Thursday evening. I had been to Atlantic City only once beore. Back in 2006 I danced in Atlantic City with Daria Zotova, competiting in the Future Champions Division. We didn't have time to do any sight seeing during my first visit. This time I was hoping to see more of the city.  The  weather forecast would ultimately prevent us from seeing anything. But I did get to see all the billboards on the drive in. One of them advertise the Long Island Medium, I had no idea that she did shows in ATC.  The weather was in the back our our minds as we checked into the hotel, which was extensively remodeled since our last visit. . The hotel was formerly named the Trump Marina, which many people used to nickname the "Dump Marina".
 Since the hotel's change of ownership, it was remodeled extensively, Roxi and Sophia were impressed by the elevator lobby areas on each floor, and fun fun lounging on the swank Varga Style couches...

The Grand Ballroom of the Golden Nugget was dressed beautifully for this competition, in shades of Pink and Purple, it was also fit with neon lights tat were fitting for a casino style comp. There was excitement upon entering the ballroom.

Sophia had two successful days of competing in Smooth and Rhythm freestyles. This was her very first time entered in Silver Rhythm, and she placed 2nd in her Silver Rhythm Scholarship.

Dana was entered in bronze smooth freestyles and placed second in her Bronze Smooth Scholarship.
Roxi, Sophia and I were all very proud of her, as it was her first time placing in the too of her scholarship division.

After our first night of dancing we all went on the town for dinner. Dana is native to the Atlantic City area, and suggested a famous (historic) night spot for us all to catch dinner. It was the highlight of our stay in Atlantic city. We took a cab over to Angelo's Italian restaurant, which is filled with celebrity photos and history of Atlantic City...

Angelo's also has fabulous Italian food. Sophia felt right at home. Together we were all seated under a photo of Steve Lawrence and Eydie Gorme. We had a wonderful time.

Our second day at the New Jersey State Open was as wonderful a the first. In the morning, as we were dressing and prepping for our day on te dance floor, I couldn't help but peer out the widows at the darkening sky, and the beautiful year- round heated swimming pool.

 The Golden Nugget has a beautiful Marina and resort area, with heated hot tubs, cabanas, and swimming pools. The pool and hot tubs were packed with people, despite the now chilly Halloween Air. For some reason I felt tempted to go for a swim... But our schedule didn't allow it. Instead we had just enough time listen to all the pre storm warnings on the weather channel.
After a full day of dancing on Saturday, we attended the New Jersey State Open Grand Banquet Dinner in the hotel ballroom. As we prepared our eveving wear the hotel delivered evacuation notices to all the hotel rooms. requiring us to leave the hotel by Sunday at 11am.
The impending evacuation of Atlantic City was the discussion among everyone during the evening dinner session. It overshadowed the awe and opulence of the ballroom which was decorated so beautifully for the banquet dinner dance. Our group stayed for the Saturday evening session followed by the New Jersey State Open Awards ceremony, where Sophia took "Top Bronze' student.  Following awards we received notice that the parkway was to be closed to southbound traffic due to Hurricane Evacuation. We had to scramble back to our hotel rooms and pack for an early departure. We drove home around midnite, leaving Atlantic City ahead of the road closure.

As we departed Atlantic City, we noticed that the majority of the billboards were dismantled ahead of the storm.

This was a view of Angelo's, where we had dinner on Friday, as the storm began to hit.
A view of Angelo's sign after the storm

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