This photo, which was used in a real estate guide in the late 1950s and early 1960s, shows Nick & Bob’s Clam Bar on the Boardwalk near Porter Avenue. I know a “Nick and Bob (Dionisio)” operating a similar business on the Boardwalk today known as Park Seafood (located at the south end of Funtown). Coincidence? Hardly! Update: Nick confirmed for me that this was, indeed, his grandfather Nick’s and his father Bob’s clam bar. Bob was a teenager when the elder Nick helped set him up in business on the Boardwalk. The family also owned a restaurant on the north end at Casino Pier named “Mrs. D.” Park Seafood celebrates three generations of the Dionisio family owning and operating food establishments on the Boardwalk.
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There’s a lot of Seaside Heights history among these four former borough councilmen. In the first photo from the late 1970s – early 1980s era, Bob Dionisio, Anthony Raniero, Mike Graichen, and Guy Mazzanti (l-r) stand alongside the town’s new beach rake machine at the Borough Plant on Grant Avenue. Bob Dionisio has owned numerous businesses in Seaside Heights over the years and these days can be found at Park Seafood on the Boardwalk helping out the owner – his son Nick. Anthony Raniero was a local builder and motel owner before leaving Seaside Heights. Mike Graichen owned the towel stand on the Boardwalk at Webster Ave. for many years before moving to the North End where today he owns and operates Lucky’s Arcade. Folding towels at the stand for Mike was my first job as a kid. Nickel a dozen. Then a dime a dozen. I “retired” at a quarter a dozen.
Guy Mazzanti worked for the family’s food market on the southeast corner of Blaine Ave. & Central Ave and operated the LaFontana Motel and other local apartment complexes in the borough. His family’s roots in Seaside Heights go back more than 50 years. Guy is an active member of the Seaside Heights Vol. Fire Company and served as fire chief for a time. All four of them had children who grew up in town and went through the Hugh J. Boyd Elementary School. In fact, Stacey Dionisio (Smith) returned to the school as a teacher (joining her mother Marsha)! Great people like these made growing up in Seaside Heights the memorable experience that it was.