Thursday, April 28, 2011

Jovi Witness

Posted by on Thu, Apr 28, 2011 at 5:35 PM

Tara Jill Ciccarone stands in front of her Sacred Shrine to Bon Jovi.
  • Marta Jewson
  • Tara Jill Ciccarone stands in front of her Sacred Shrine of Jon Bon Jovi.

By Marta Jewson

Tara Jill Ciccarone, creator of the Sacred Shrine of Jon Bon Jovi, is not trying to give love a bad name. But she can’t contain her adoration for the New Jersey rocker.

The Sacred Shrine of Jon Bon Jovi spills off the front porch of her home and onto the lawn. Besides posters of the rock legend and his flowing locks, there is a dollhouse fan club and multiple ‘fan’ dolls housed in a birdcage. Ciccarone’s favorite part (newest work-in-progress addition to the shrine) is the dollhouse. Its four rooms showcase lyrics literally translated, including a “bed of roses,” a “bed of nails,” a “cowboy on a steel horse” and “bad medicine.” The shrine is also quipped with free Aqua Net Hairspray. People can visit the shrine at 2943 Maurepas St. or follow updates on Ciccarone's shrine blog.

Before Bon Jovi takes the Acura Stage at Jazz Fest (4:50 p.m. Saturday), Ciccarone will host multiple Jon Bon Jovi-inspired contests and serve his favorite dish: macaroni and cheese.

“Jon Bon Jovi and his fans know that they are welcome here,” Ciccarone says, standing in front of the shrine, just a couple of blocks from the entrance to the Fair Grounds.

(More shrine photos after the jump.)

Ciccarone is holding a drawing contest and an air guitar contest. There are prizes for best drawing of Jon Bon Jovi, and they are obviously Bon Jovi themed, such as lighters with pictures of the shrine.

“That way people can hold them up at the concert instead of their cell phones,” Ciccarone says.

The Bon JOvi Dollhouse is a new addition.

In 2009, the long-time Jon Bon Jovi fan started the shrine in front of her home in response to aired opinions that the headliner did not belong at Jazz Fest. The shrine has been there ever since and has expanded in recent weeks in preparation for the star’s second performance at Jazz Fest.

Ciccarone is taking her reverence to cyperspace by promoting the shrine through various social media outlets and keeping the faith that Bon Jovi might visit this time. She created a blog, Twitter feed and has a Facebook page.She has also posted videos of the shrine on YouTube.


She’s not the only Bon Jovi fan. The band has sold more than 130 million albums worldwide and continues to tour. In 2006, Jon donated $1 million to Habitat for Humanity in New Orleans to build 28 new homes.

Ciccarone hopes Jon Bon Jovi will perform “Queen of New Orleans.” With the news that Bon Jovi guitarist Richie Sambora may have entered rehab this week, she notes, “The song doesn’t have much guitar in it.”

She says Saturday’s contests and food are open to the public. Ciccarone once heard that Jon Bon Jovi may have cancelled a show because they did not have macaroni and cheese, she’ll be livin’ on a prayer, and saving one bowl of mac and cheese for the man himself.

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