ASBURY PARK - Tonight kicks off the Garden State Film Festival in Asbury Park, where 150 films from 24 countries are expected to be shown.
The event will be a boost for the local economy since crowds don't usually make their way to the shore during the colder months. Having 30,000 people descend on the city means restaurants, clubs and other businesses will all be open just like during the height of the tourist season. Actress Lainie Kazan will be presented the Beacon Award during the opening ceremonies. Clarence "Big Man" Clemens, of Bruce Springsteen's E-Street Band, will also be on hand, as he's being honored with the Spirit of New Jersey award for the way his saxophone playing has moved fans.