56° Partly Cloudy

RED BANK: FORTUNE HOUSE MAY BE RAZED

The house, at 94 Drs. Parker Boulevard, was once the home of African American journalist T. Thomas Fortune. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

A day that Red Bank historic preservationists have dreaded for years appears nearer as the owners of the so-called T. Thomas Fortune house have filed a formal request to demolish the historic structure.

Eighty-six-year-old James Vaccarrelli of Shrewsbury, who owned the house with his brother Anthony, filed for a demolition permit from the borough last Friday afternoon, borough planning director Donna Smith-Barr tells redbankgreen.

Anthony Vaccarelli, 93, died at his Red Bank home last month, according to an obituary published by the Asbury Park Press. James tells redbankgreen that the move was anticipated prior to his brother’s death, as efforts to sell the property in recent years have failed because of the deteriorated condition of the house.

“There’s nothing to save,” said Vaccarelli, who was born and raised in the house, at 94 Drs. James Parker Boulevard. “It’s a shame, but vandals got into it many, many times, even though it was boarded up, and they just wrecked it.”

Read More »

RUMSON KEGGER LEADS TO ONE ARREST

By JOHN T. WARD

A Rumson teen was arrested and about 50 underage drinkers were dispersed from a party Saturday night, borough police reported Tuesday.

Detective Chris Isherwood tells redbankgreen tha Sergeant Damien Brennan and Patrolman James Fenn were on patrol when they came upon “large packs of kids running in the road” outside a Rumson Road residence at about 10:48 p.m.

On further investigation, cops found “numerous bottles of alcohol and cases of scattered beer cans, both opened and unopened,” at a party attended by dozens under 21 years old, he said.

Read More »

RED BANK: ‘SCHOOL’ IS IN SESSION, AT TRTC

MarkWingDaveyBritish actor, director and educator Mark Wing-Davey brings a dream project to Red Bank, with a bold new realization of the 17th century comedy THE SCHOOL FOR WIVES that opens this week at Two River Theater.

When he’s donning the mortarboard of serious academia, Mark Wing-Davey serves as chair of the graduate acting program at NYU’s venerable Tisch School of the Arts. When he puts on an altogether different hat (or head), he’s the actor best identified with the role of the double-header despot Zaphod Beeblebrox, in various radio, video and stage dramatizations of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series of sci-fi satires by Douglas Adams.

An in-demand director from coast (UC Berkeley’s Pericles) to coast (the McCarter Theatre premiere of Greensboro: A Requiem with Philip Seymour Hoffman), the Brit-born Wing-Davey has been hitching a ride to Red Bank of late; reuniting with former Public Theater colleagues John Dias and Michael Hurst for a dream project of sorts: the 17th century comedy The School for Wives. The 1662 classic by the French farcemaster Molière is onstage now at Two River Theater as the first “back to school” session of the new 2014-2015 mainstage season.

The story of wealthy Arnolphe, the naïve young thing that he cultivates as his future Perfect Wife — and the ways in which the carefully micro-managed scheme backfires on the schemer — is on stage for three more preview performances (Wednesday at 1 pm and 7 pm; Thursday at 8 pm); opening on Friday night and continuing with a mix of matinee and evening shows through October 5. Stage and screen character actor Robert Stanton heads the cast as Arnolphe, with Phillipa Soo as the not-so naive Agnes, and Korey Jackson as her hopeful suitor Horace. They’ll be performing the best-known English translation of the original French text, by the Pulitzer Prize winning poet Richard Wilbur.

Check the Two River YouTube page for a video in which the director details the creation of the show’s distinctive visual conceptualization — including the “phallic” features and “pubic triangle” of the set design by Tony winner David Gallo — then take it around the corner for the redbankgreen Drama Desk conversation with Mark Wing-Davey.

Read More »

RED BANK: PADDLE DAY RESURFACES

rb paddle day 091414 13rb paddle day 091414 5They lined up for a chance to kayak, row and sail our beautiful river when Paddle the Navesink Day returned after a one-year absence Sunday. Navesink River Rowing, the Monmouth Boat Club, Navesink Maritime Heritage Association and other organizations provided participants with hands-on recreational and educational experiences. More photos after the jump… (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)     

 

Read More »

RED BANK: USED COOKING OIL SWIPED

AUTHORITIES_RB2-2014The crime and arrest reports below were provided by the Red Bank Police Department for the period of September 4 to September 11, 2014. This information is unedited.

CRIMES

Criminal Mischief occurring at Monmouth St. business on 9-5-14. Victim reported that unknown person(s) deployed graffiti on the side of building. Ptl. Kristin Altimari.

Theft occurring on 9-5-14 at Maple Ave business. Victim reported that he placed wallet on counter, walked away. Upon returning wallet was missing. Contained cash and debit card. Ptl. John Camarca

Theft occurring on 9-7-14 at Pinckney Road. Victim reported that unknown person(s) entered parked car and took a gym bag containing a bathing suit and hearing aid. Ptl. John Camarca.

Read More »

RED BANK: WALGREENS BEGINS RX WORK

rb walgreens 091514Rcsm2_010508Contrary to speculation in a redbankgreen article back in March, when we reported that Walgreens was “reviewing” whether to go ahead with its controversial plan for a Red Bank store, the pharmacy giant is… going ahead with its plan for a Red Bank store.

Demolition began Monday on the former Rassas Buick showroom at 395 Broad Street, opposite the SuperFoodtown market. Monmouth County records show that Aaron Rassas sold the longtime home of his family auto dealership to a company affiliated with Walgreens’ developer Mark Development on July 31 for $3.35 million. Information about the store’s expected opening date was not immediately available.

Rassas Pontiac, which opened at 21 Mechanic Street in 1930, relocated to the Broad Street site in 1949 and operated there continuously until it shut down in early 2013. There’s some more history here. (Photo by Michael McMahon. Click to enlarge)

RED BANK: SHAKEN, STIRRED ‘N SWINGING

Pink-Martini1Pink Martini — fronted by vocalist China Forbes and maestro-impresario Thomas Lauderdale — returns to the Count Basie stage for a Tuesday night toddy on September 16.

Like their confectionary cocktail namesake, Pink Martini is a deceptively cartoon-colored concoction that carries a serious kick; a cross-cultural mixology of flavors and influences that leaves those who partake with an afterbuzz that’s equal parts “what just happened” and “let’s do it again.”

The brainchild of bespectacled pianist, maestro and impresario Thomas Lauderdale, the ten-piece “little orchestra” recently marked its tenth anniversary as a globetrotting provider of soundtracks to events that range from The Cause (civic happenings, political fundraisers) to just-because (free outdoor concerts, and numerous guest collaborations with symphonies on six continents). The conceptual combo that Lauderdale described as “if the United Nations had a house band in 1962″ brings its multilingual bouillabaisse of classical, jazz and songbook-pop spicings back to the stage of the Count Basie Theatre on Tuesday, September 16.

Read More »

RED BANK: MOTHER & DAUGHTER HIT BY CAR

AUTHORITIES_RB2-2014A six-year-old Red Bank girl and her mother suffered minor injuries when they were hit by a car as they crossed Shrewsbury Avenue Saturday morning, police said.

Cecila Tecalero, 28, and her daughter, Dulce Marie Trejo, were crossing Shrewsbury at West Bergen Place also known as Drs. Parker Boulevard – with traffic when they were struck in the crosswalk at around 10:28 a.m., police said in a prepared statement.

Read More »

RED BANK: GENTLE GIANT FROM SUGAR HILL

DonWilliams_03approved_hiresCountry singer-songwriter Don Williams rolls his tour bus up to the Count Basie for a Monday one-nighter on September 15.

Although he’s scored numerous chart-topping C&W hits, won countless CMA Awards and even gotten himself inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame, he’s arguably better known as a song-scribe for performers that have ranged from Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings and Kenny Rogers, to Pete Townshend, Robert Palmer and Eric Clapton. He’s even done at least one Farewell Tour and Final Farewell Concert, before pulling a Favre and hitting the road and the recording studio once more. But rather than demand their money back, appreciative fans of Don Williams have continued to cherish the lanky stranger’s brand of laid-back (because of “nothing to prove”), Americana-inflected country pop.

Back on the road after some health-related cancellations a couple of years ago, the artist branded “The Gentle Giant” makes a very rare NJ appearance on Monday, September 15, when that endlessly rolling tour bus eases into a tight but accommodating Pearl Street berth outside the Count Basie Theatre. It’s there that Williams performs an 8 pm concert, gigging behind his most recent release And So It Goes on Sugar Hill Records (not the same label that brought you The Treacherous Three, The Funky Four or The Furious Five).

Read More »

SANDY HOOK: A LATE-SUMMER WIND

jeff barb bauerWindsurfer Jeff Bauer shows them all how it’s done, as New Jersey Windsurfing and Watersports Fun Day returns to the bay side of the Sandy Hook peninsula on Sunday. (Photo by Barbara Bauer)

Local Summer is alive and well on the Monmouth County coastline, where a curiously cool and comfy season draws to a close with an ever-growing array of post-Labor Day outdoor activities. One of the most consistent (if slightly under-the-radar) signifiers of September returns this Sunday to Sandy Hook Bay, where the annual New Jersey Windsurfing and Watersports Fun Day looks to introduce a new generation of enthusiasts to a range of recreational activities that can be enjoyed on our many local waterways.

A presentation of the all-volunteer New Jersey Windsurfing & Watersports Association, the day commences at 10 am with expert instruction in windsurfing, as well as the increasingly popular stand-up paddleboarding and its zen cousin, SUP Yoga. While attendees needn’t have any experience in any of these activities, swim skills are required, and participants younger than 18 years of age are asked to be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

Read More »

RED BANK: GRID STARS OF OLD

rbpl football 091014 1rbpl football 091014 2Photos of Red Bank High School football players, coaches and cheerleaders from the 1940s and ’50s give the lobby display case at borough hall a distinctly autumnal feel.

The exhibit, put together by volunteers from the public library, showcases images taken by RBHS photography teacher Anthony Trufolo. The last display, assembled in June, featured prom pix from Trufolo’s collection. Library director Elizabeth McDermott says the next one, scheduled for January, will spotlight theatrical productions at the school, which merged into a regional school district in 1975. 

Do you know any of these folks? (Photos of photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

 

rbpl football 091014 3

RED BANK: TODDLER, GREAT-GRANDMOM HIT

rb accident 091114 2Emergency responders on the scene, above. Below, a State Police helicopter raises a cloud of dust at Count Basie Field while taking off for Neptune with one of the victims onboard. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

[This article was updated at 8:45 a.m. Friday to include the names and relationship of the victims and the driver, as well as the woman's condition.]

rb accident 091114 1An 85-year-old Red Bank woman was in critical condition after she and her four-year-old great-grandchild were struck by a vehicle while crossing Newman Springs Road Thursday night.

The child, Cashmir Lahsir Hicks, was not seriously injured in the accident, which occurred when the pair jaywalked across the busy four-lane roadway after making a purchase at the Burger King near Shrewsbury Avenue shortly before 8 p.m., said police Chief Darren McConnell.

Read More »

RED BANK & MIDDLETOWN: LIBRARY VOICES

rbpl-book-saleAfter a preview party Friday evening, the two-day Red Bank Public Library book sale gets underway Saturday morning. Below, ‘The City and the Shore’ come alive as graphic artist Mike Quon open an exhibit of his works at Middletown Library.

QuonSeptember means time for a shout-out to the Red Bank Public Library — and, rather than shushing some of the more enthusiastic shouters, the Friends of the Red Bank Public Library are encouraging all citizens of the greater Green to come out to support this community resource during a used book sale that stands among the area’s most anticipated such annual events.

Much more than just a casual card-table-and-cashbox affair, the sale kicks off with a special preview party at the library on Friday evening, when, for an admission charge of $25 (free to member Friends), attendees can enjoy first dibs on the selection of books, CDs, DVDs and more — as well as wine, appetizers, raffles and a performance by Red Bank’s own jazz legend trio, the Al Wright Unit.

Read More »

RED BANK: CURTAIN UP THIS WEEKEND

Sound SchoolLindsay Wood as Maria joins the Phoenix troupe in bringing ‘The Sound of Music’ to the Basie boards beginning this Friday — while Moliere’s ‘The School for Wives’ receives a bold new production design, as Two River Theater opens an all-new season with a Saturday night preview.

One is that family favorite that you grew up on, the one where “the hills are alive,”while the other is a new take on a theatrical classic that’s nearly old as them thar hills.

While Red Bank’s world-class professional Two River Theater Company and Red Bank’s community players Phoenix Productions would seem to approach their art from totally different places, there’s a common mission to give the audience a production that’s awesome to behold: a show that makes for the centerpiece of a memorable night out.

Read More »