Photo from AL.com
The Jon Bon Jovi and Brad Paisley Concerts were a complete success last weekend. To be on Gulf Shores beach and hear a concert is something many of us have never experienced and was absolutely spectacular. On Friday the shoulder-to-shoulder crowd seemed to love Gulf Shores and so did the New Jersey rocker Jon Bon Jovi. Judging from the crowds the goal of 35,000 on the sugar white sands was well within reach. In-between songs Bon Jovi reached out to the crowd and said, “Out on the beach in Alabama on a Friday night! Are you with me out there?” The deafening reaction from the sprawling crowd was a pure sign of agreement. The unity displayed in that one moment resonated with vacationers and locals alike! With occupancy rates reported in the 80 to 90 percent across the coast for the weekend it was a much needed boost to our local economy.
The logistics of the event was a key point of improvement after Jimmy Buffet’s summer concert, the first of a four part series. Gulf Shores Mayor Robert Craft said, “The good thing about this one is we knew what we were doing. Last time we thought we knew. There’s a big difference.” Our guests commented on how well the events were organized and executed. The last of the series will be Alan Jackson at the Wharf Saturday October 30th.
The best thing it did is help us with the “perceptions” that the Deepwater Horizon oil spill has ruined our beaches. BP has been hard at work to clean our beaches. I and thousands of others saw first hand how clean everything really is. I personally have not seen the beaches in this good a shape in years. The sand is “Destin like” sand. The color and feel and has not been this great in years. Many years of hurricanes churning up the beach in addition to dredging and re-nourishing projects had left us with many pieces of shells and other tiny debris. Now it is once again soft to walk on, beautiful white and squeaky clean!