Art collector and auto dealer Ken Schwartz opened his new Detour Gallery in an 8,000-square-foot former warehouse on Clay Street in Red Bank Thursday night.
The opening exhibit, titled ‘Culturedrone,’ features dozens of contemporary paintings displayed over the gallery’s two floors. The space, featuring the original 50-foot-wide exposed roof trusses, was designed by borough-based architect Stephen Raciti.
Click ‘read more’ for additional photos from the opening.
Developer Roger Mumford leads high school journalism students on a tour of the Fortune House. Below, Mumford with preservationist Gilda Rogers. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)
By JOHN T. WARD
Less than a week after the Red Bank zoning board approved a plan to save it, the still-crumbling T. Thomas Fortune House offered a preview Wednesday of its anticipated role: as a cultural and educational center.
About a dozen high school students from around New Jersey took an exterior tour of the onetime home of pioneering civil rights journalist, who lived in it for a decade starting in 1901 and entertained the leading lights of black culture there. In the process, they also got a lesson in how the interests of preservationists and profit-minded developers might converge.
Developer Roger Mumford with an architect’s rendering of the T. Thomas Fortune house as it would appear after restoration. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)
By JOHN T. WARD
A decade-long effort to save an endangered artifact of African-American history cleared a major milestone Thursday night when the Red Bank zoning board approved a developer’s plan to rebuild the T. Thomas Fortune house and create 31 apartments on its one-acre property.
Borough-based homebuilder Roger Mumford, who vowed to restore and donate the house for use as a cultural center before he would seek certificates of occupancy for the apartments, was hailed as the last-chance savior of a vital relic of the civil rights movement that its current owners want to raze. Residents told the board before its vote that Mumford deserved the tradeoff of more than a dozen variances, most of them arising from the apartment plan.
“If a development project has ever given back to the community, it’s this one,” said Kalman Pipo, a member of the borough’s Historic Preservation Commission. “If this project doesn’t go through, we are going to lose this house” to the wrecking ball, he said.
Developer Roger Mumford‘s plan to save the dilapidated T. Thomas Fortune house on Drs. James Parker Boulevard in Red Bank faces its first test this week.
The proposal, which is backed by a volunteer group hoping to preserve the pioneering civil rights journalist’s home, calls for restoring the National Historic Register structure for use as a cultural center devoted to preserving African American history and serving as a resource for social justice initiatives. The plan, dubbed “Fortune Square,” also includes a 32-unit apartment building proposed for the rear of the property. Multiple variances are required.
The hearing is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. at borough hall, 90 Monmouth Street. Here’s the agenda: RBZB agenda 072116. (Click to enlarge)
Looking to buy or rent a home in Red Bank? Borough life gets the spotlight in a New York Times real estate feature published online Wednesday. Three married couples who bought homes in recent years talk about the draw of the town, and the story offers an overview of what’s available, with prices ($1,500 to $3,400 a month to rent, and a recent average sale price of $337,165). (Click to enlarge)
The home of pioneering human rights journalist T. Thomas Fortune would be restored for use as a cultural center, as shown in the architectural rendering above. Below, four views of the four-story, 32-unit apartment building proposed for the rear of the property. (Click to enlarge)
By JOHN T. WARD
After years of efforts by volunteer historians to halt decades of decay, an historic Red Bank residence may be spared the wrecking ball.
Developer Roger Mumford has proposed restoring what he calls the “highly deteriorated” T. Thomas Fortune house on Drs. James Parker Boulevard and turning it into a cultural center.
Mumford’s plan comes with a catch: he wants the town to grant him a host of variances to construct 32 apartments on the site — more than twice the density allowed by zoning law. But he’s billing it as a win for all involved.
A team of painters, including 13 students from the visual arts program at Red Bank Regional, worked on the mural throughout the day Saturday and into early Sunday. (Photos by Trish Russoniello. Click to enlarge)
By JOHN T. WARD
Racing to finish before an expected rain, a team of artists and volunteers painted a two-story mural in downtown Red Bank over the weekend.
Overlooking the parking lot for Buona Sera restaurant at Monmouth Street and Maple Avenue, the mural promotes a film festival scheduled to light up movie screens in town next month.
A scan from a flyer given out at Wednesday’s council meeting shows a rendering of the proposed mural, at left, and the building it would go on. At bottom right is a 150-foot-tall mural the artist, Misha Tyutyunik, helped create in SoHo. (Click to enlarge)
By JOHN T. WARD
A prominent black wall in downtown Red Bank may soon be covered with a two-story-high, somewhat psychedelic mural.
The borough council greenlighted the makeover Wednesday night after an organizer of a film festival scheduled to hit town this summer offered it as what he called a “gift” to the town.
President Obama calls on Rutgers Targum editor Dan Corey during College Reporter Day at the White House last Thursday. (Video by the DC bureau of The Record)
A college journalist from Lincroft has landed one of the biggest “gets” in the media world: a sit-down with President Obama.
Dan Corey, a 19-year-sophomore at Rutgers University in New Brunswick and editor-in-chief of the Daily Targum, asked for the interview when the president called on him at a White House event last Thursday, according to a report by NorthJersey.com, the website of the Record of Hackensack.
Trustees of the library say local taxpayers would still have to foot the cost of the borough facility on West Front Street, above, with access to fewer resources from Monmouth County. (Photo above by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)
By JOHN T. WARD
The question pops up periodically, and did so several times last year in a user survey: would Red Bankers be better off if their library was part of the Monmouth County library system?
The big screen at the Count Basie Theatre, seen here during a live broadcast of the 2014 World Cup, will serve as the home screen for a film festival scheduled to run in July. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)
By JOHN T. WARD
Kept on a restricted diet for the past eight years, Red Bank-area fans of independent movies will finally get to binge again this summer.
An outfit called Indie Street — in conjunction with Red Bank RiverCenter, three major entertainment venues and even the borough middle school — is planning screenings of as many as 30 films over five days in July.
Through his foundation, former Disney CEO Michael Eisner below, has pledged $50,000 to the library that bears his family’s name. (Photo above by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)
(Press release from the Red Bank Public Library)
The Eisner Memorial Red Bank Public Library started 2016 with a nice surprise: a letter notifying Director Elizabeth McDermott of a five-year, $50,000 donation to the Foundation for the Red Bank Public Library from the Eisner Foundation.
This is the largest donation yet received by the library foundation, with $10,000 being donated annually for five years.
Councilman and Democratic party chair Ed Zipprich, right, with Democratic council candidate Michael Ballard at the borough Halloween parade last month. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)
By JOHN T. WARD
[SEE UPDATE BELOW ]
An eleventh-hour election email purportedly sent by Red Bank Democratic Party chairman and Councilman Ed Zipprich has drawn fire from Republicans both for its content, which they allege was “word-for-word” plagiarized, and for the method by which it was distributed.
Republican chairman Sean DiSomma and Councilwoman Linda Schwabenbauer both said Zipprich took an email that Schwabenbauer sent out Monday afternoon in support of the two Republican council candidates and tweaked it into an endorsement of the two Democratic candidates.
Then Zipprich sent his version out to recipients whose addresses he improperly obtained from the borough parks and recreation department, said Di Somma, who called for an investigation by state election authorities.
Here’s the trailer to “After Sandy,” a new film made over the past three years by Middetown resident Joe Minnella to document the rebuilding efforts at the Jersey shore in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Minnella and Anthony Jude Setaro of Red Bank, who produced the film, are alumni of Red Bank Catholic High School.
To view the full 100-minute film, click “like” at the “After Sandy” Facebook page and you’ll receive a link to the film page at 8 p.m. on Thursday. The film will be available for viewing until 8 p.m Friday. (Click to enlarge)
A new interactive map developed by NJ.com, the website of the Star-Ledger, enables users to zoom down to nearly the street level to show where every one of New Jersey’s more than 8.9 million residents lives, as well as the race and ethnicity of each, according to the 2010 Census.
The map doesn’t pinpoint the exact address of every resident: that would be creepy, wrote NJ.com reporter Stephen Stirling. Instead, developers at NJ Advance Media “created a dot for each person of each race within each Census block, and scattered them randomly throughout their representative geography,” he said. The result, said Stirling, “is the most detailed look at race in New Jersey possible with information available today.”
The effect is highly detailed image that shows while the state is the most diverse in the nation, the Greater Red Bank Green is a near monoculture of whites (represented by blue dots) outside Red Bank’s West Side, which is home to dense concentrations of Hispanic and African-American residents. And even those two groups are somewhat segregated, the data suggests. (Screen grab from NJ.com)
Holmdel police arrested a Red Bank man earlier this week on charges of impairing the morals of minor, according to a police report.
Kevin Donohue, 60, of Irving Place, was arrested Monday for “purposely showing a 12-year-old girl pornographic material on a small tablet as he approached her while she was shopping,” the police report said.
Glamour magazine book editor Elisabeth Egan (above) visits River Road Books on Thursday to read from and sign copies of her recently published A WINDOW OPENS…while fellow first-time novelist Barrie Levitt Knee arrives later this month to promote her debut book PLAIN JANE (below).
Two new novels; two stirring stories of contemporary women at a crossroads of life-choices. Both written by authors who are new to book-length fiction, and both the subject of special events at Fair Haven’s River Road Books here in October, a month when we shake the sand from those “beach reads” and find something a little more fireside-appropriate.
But don’t break out that Snuggie just yet, as one of the visiting authors might just inspire you to take it outdoors for one more cool-weather marathon.