By Michael Cook:
So many people talk about “nothing new to do in Asbury Park” but very few take action. Jojo Crisci has stepped from behind the bar to take the reins at several of Asbury Park’s biggest events, with more to come this summer. Jojo spoke about what inspired him to start promoting and throwing his own events, and of course, how to throw a proper party…
Michael: Jojo, you’re known as one of the premier bartenders of Asbury Park. What got you inspired to start throwing parties?
Jojo: Well I honestly had no idea that I was a “premier bartender” in Asbury Park. I just enjoy my job and hopefully it shows. I decided to start throwing parties because several friends encouraged me to do so. I’ve had a few infamous holiday house parties, and I’ve just spun it into a fun night out.
Michael: What do you think makes an amazing party?
Jojo: You can cross all your T’s and dot all your I’s, but if you don’t have great people, you will not have a great party. That’s what I love about Asbury Park and the amazing people I’ve met here.
Michael: How do you choose the DJ’s for your parties? Who are some of your favorite DJ’s to have play at your parties?
Jojo: I choose my DJ’s based on input from others. Some of my favorites are Jonny Mack, John Michael DiSpirito, Kim Dazy, and of course Shep Pettibone. We are trying some new DJ’s as well. The next party will feature DJ Stanley Styles. I wanted something a little different, and I think he will produce that.
Michael: You’re also one of the most outspoken nightlife personalities in Asbury Park. What are some definite “dont’s” for people to do at your parties?
Jojo: Who me, outspoken? Don’t go into any thing with a closed mind, it just breeds negativity. Open your mind to new ideas and new people. It’s amazing what can happen when you drop your guard. I’ve met some of the greatest people I know by dropping misconceptions and letting them in. Anyone who knows my group of friends can tell you how diverse they are; we come together as a family of misfits. And I love it!
Michael: Summer is always an amazing time in Asbury Park. What are some of your summer not to be missed events in Asbury Park?
Jojo: NJ Pride for me has always been a great event. It was truly one of my first great Asbury experiences after coming out, it brings so many people together. The summer holidays and Sandblast weekend are always fun too! I wish we could really put Asbury Park back on the “gay map” and really show this town we will not be pushed out in the redevelopment process.
Michael: You have “Stripper A Go GLO” coming on Friday May 4th at Paradise. What else do you have planned for Asbury Park in the coming months?
Jojo: We are looking to really turn it out before the summer swing is in full effect. With summer being here, we won’t need special events. But late Sept/early Oct. we will be back with the next great event, so stay tuned! I’m open to suggestions, so if you see me, tell me your ideas!
For a schedule of events at Paradise, visit ParadiseNJ.com.