I spent a little time yesterday poking my camera into some of the living rooms and sleeping porches in the tent city at Ocean Grove. I’m there at least once a week with work, but usually avoid the maze of one way streets around the Great Auditorium and instead ogle the old Victorian homes on the other side of town. It’s a great little shore oddity and one that I remember visiting as a kid. My dad brought me for Sunday services in the huge open air Auditorium back when a blue law banned cars in town on Sundays.
The town was founded as a leisure-time retreat by Methodists and descendants of those founders still come to Ocean Grove to sleep in tents for the summer and to pray by the sea. There’s a hundred-some tents and they’re laid out within inches of one another in rows around the auditorium. A more permanent structure makes up the back of each – with electric and plumbing! – and the front of the tent is reserved as a sitting/sleeping space. They’re very cute and not nearly as rustic as one might imagine.
Other ramblings about Ocean Grove are available here.