Our Mission

To create pride in our Black heritage and promote family values and unity in Atlantic County by educating and exposing our youth, the community and tourists to the original American art form of jazz. This allows us to also celebrate the rich and dynamic African-American history during the era of Chicken Bone Beach.

Our Objectives

The Chicken Bone Beach Historical Foundation, Inc. (“CBB”), is a non-profit organization formed and titled in homage to the historical segregation of African-Americans on Atlantic City’s world-famous beaches. Use of the beach was limited to the area surrounding Missouri Avenue. In a colloquial nod to the most popular leftover from many beach picnic baskets on the avenue, the term “Chicken Bone Beach” became synonymous with this famous stretch of beach in Atlantic City.

For over a dozen years, and driven by the groundbreaking efforts of its founder, Henrietta Shelton, CBB has promoted remembrance while celebrating the embracement of all races! CBB’s symbolic vehicle, Jazz, a uniquely American music form, was chosen as a beacon of America’s “melting pot”, drawing upon the founding roots of many groundbreaking African-American artists, and ever evolving through the continuing contributions of musicians of all races. CBB believes Jazz represents more than just musical entertainment; it is a progressive, gathering force of inclusion. Turning the memory of an unfortunate chapter of American history into a positive force of good through Jazz is what the Chicken Bone Beach Historical Foundation stands for!

Youth are at the heart of everything CBB does all yearlong! Through a combination of fundraising activities including concerts at various venues throughout Atlantic City, grants, as well as private and public benefactors, Chicken Bone Beach conducts annual, tuition-free Youth Summer Jazz Camps. These classes enable young people to continue their music training in Jazz under the guidance of master teachers. Their experiences culminate with collective performances of impressive precision. Throughout the years, CBB has been extremely proud to witness many students develop into contemporary Jazz impresarios of today!

As July and August roll around each year, CBB rolls out its free, weekly Jazz concerts on the world-famous Atlantic City Boardwalk. Held at Kennedy Plaza, at the footsteps of Boardwalk Hall, and drawing upon some of the biggest names in American Jazz, CBB’s concert series has become an iconic part of the Atlantic City cultural landscape, desperately awaited each year by thousands!

CBB always welcomes the generosity of your time, or your financial support, to continue the good works of the organization. CBB is an IRS recognized section 501(c)(3) corporation, making all contributions tax-deductible. Thank you for your interest and support!