rick_wakeman-pianoLongtime Yes keyboard wizard Rick Wakeman joins that classic band’s original vocalist Jon Anderson and 80s-era guitarist Trevor Rabin at the Count Basie.

Is it Yes? Actually, no… but then again maybe.

In a week when Yes was nominated (for the third time) for a place in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Red Bank area fans can get a major reminder of what made that prog-rock institution so special when three of its celebrated veterans take the stage of the Count Basie Theatre Wednesday night.

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rb halloween 101815 43The annual Red Bank Halloween Parade takes to the pavement this Sunday for another colorful display of cosplay and community pride.

rb halloween 101815 10It came in on the leading edge of the Baby Boom wave, way back in 1948 — and when the Red Bank Halloween Parade presents its 69th annual edition this Sunday, October 23, it will represent that rare local custom that’s claimed anew by each succeeding generation of miniature monster, licensed pop-culture character, or float-riding reveler.

A presentation of the borough’s Department of Parks and Recreation, this most enduring (and endearingly nutty) of civic events offers a much-needed fixed point of reference to regular readers of redbankgreen‘s “Retail Churn” and other chroniclers of our ever-evolving town. Together with additional long-running attractions like the warm-weather Riverfest and holiday-season Town Lighting, it’s an all-ages, real-world chance to connect with the community — with an option to dress up, decorate the kiddie stroller (or pet carrier), or simply trick-or-treat yourself to a chance to cheer on the people in your neighborhood.

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The Romantic Piano with David Dubal 5.30.13Emmy winning broadcaster, producer, educator and keyboardist David Dubal returns to the Monmouth Conservatory this Sunday for a public-welcome program on the great composer Sergei Rachmaninoff.

Those of us who are “classically curious” but put off by the prospect of such music-world clichés as starchy formalwear and intimidating ticket prices have a friend in the Monmouth Conservatory Of Music. The Red Bank institution’s long-running series of public-welcome concerts have brought an impressive roster of guest artists to town in a setting that’s free of pretension (and often free of charge).

Those of us whose appreciation of fine music is helped immeasurably by some enlightening background info — and who have been meaning to look in on one of the MCM’s monthly offerings at its downtown space — can do no better than to check out this Sunday’s return visit by David Dubal, the radio host, essayist, music professor and pianist whose encyclopedic expertise and engaging interview skills have netted him a Peabody, a Deems Taylor Award, and an Emmy (if not yet a Grammy).

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red-bank-pdPress release from Red Bank Police Department

Commonly prescribed painkillers and other prescription medications have been linked to the epidemic of drug use in communities throughout the United States — and this Saturday, October 22, the federal Drug Enforcement Administration will stage a coast-to-coast National Prescription Drug Take Back Day, during which the public will be encouraged to bring any unused or expired prescription medications to designated drop-off points for safe disposal.

Here in the Red Bank area, the borough Police Station at 90 Monmouth Street will be open between the hours of 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. to receive any dropped off materials (no needles will be accepted for this program). For additional information, go here or call (800)882-9539.


lb-logo-2Press release from Lunch Break Inc.

A chance to be in the audience for some of the most popular major network TV shows. Sought-after seats for NFL games. Even an opportunity to host your very own episode of Antiques Roadshow. When the annual benefit gala for the Red Bank-based nonprofit Lunch Break takes place on Friday, October 21, attendees will enjoy the opportunity to bid on a collection of exciting prize packages — and even if you can’t be there in person for the event hosted at an Eatontown residence, you’ll be able to place a bid on any of the offered lots, beginning at 10:30 a.m. on Friday.

By going here to register, you’ll be able to use the eBoost app on your smartphone to make donations, preview and bid on items put up for auction, both online and live at the 7 p.m. gala.

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suzanne-keller-gwendolyn-loveThe SOURCE director Suzanne Keller and Lunch Break exec director Gwendolyn Love are pictured at the launch of the expanded Red Bank Regional Community Tutoring Program at Lunch Break.

Press release from Red Bank Regional High School

This school year, the Red Bank based nonprofit Lunch Break has graciously offered its facility to the Red Bank Regional High School District, for the expansion of its popular Community Peer Tutoring Program. Dedicated to a mission of “Removing all obstacles that impede a students’ academic success,” the program is operated by The SOURCE, RBR’s School Based Youth Services Program.

Fifty freshmen will meet at the newly renovated Lunch Break dining room every Tuesday and Thursday from 6 to 7:30 p.m., for homework help with their teachers. RBR upper classmen from the school’s National Honor Societies, Key Club and International Baccalaureate program also provide tutoring support for the students under the teachers’ supervision.

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peterframptonClassic rock legend Peter Frampton comes to Red Bank with an all-acoustic concert at the Count Basie Tuesday night. 

“It’s all gone,” said Peter Frampton during a TV appearance several years ago, indicating the nearly hairless head where once resided one of the most luxurious manes in all of classic rockdom. “And it’s not coming back.”

Fortunately, the platinum-plated guitarist/ singer/ songwriter hasn’t shed his easy rapport with a live audience, and when he comes to the stage of Red Bank’s Count Basie Theatre Tuesday night, he’ll be serving up selections from his long career raw, as part of an all-acoustic tour.

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mollypitcher (1)Press release from Red Bank Business Alliance

On Thursday, November 17, the members of the Red Bank Business Alliance (RBBA) will host their first Holiday Soirée at the Molly Pitcher Inn overlooking the beautiful Navesink River. Scheduled to begin at 6 p.m., the evening of holiday festivities will focus on supporting the business owners, consumers and residents of the Red Bank area, with an emphasis on giving back to the community.

One hundred percent of ticket sales and proceeds from the event will be donated to two locally based nonprofit organizations — Jason’s Dreams for Kids, helping local kids with cancer fulfill their dreams, and Clean Ocean Action, focusing on a project to clean the Navesink River. Guests will enjoy silent auctions, complimentary cocktail tastings, fine fare, drink specials and entertainment.

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PILGRIM baptistPress release from Pilgrim Baptist Church

From now through October 30, Pilgrim Baptist Church of Red Bank, (172 Shrewsbury Ave) in conjunction with the Lott Carey Foundation, is sponsoring a Cleaning Supplies Drive to assist families recovering from floods in our southern states.

Residents are encouraged to bring donations of needed items to the church at 172 Shrewsbury Avenue, between 9:30 a.m. and 7 p.m. Monday through Friday. The most needed items include bleach, antibacterial soap, baby wipes, hand wipes, trash bags, disinfectant, and plastic gloves. Also welcomed will be donations of non-perishable foods, toothpaste, soap, children’s underwear and socks.  

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david_sedaris_5004Best-selling author and humorist-storyteller David Sedaris (above) returns to the Count Basie stage on Thursday night…while Colin Mochrie and Brad Sherwood (below) bring their impishly improv’d interactions back to Red Bank on Saturday.

mochrie-sherwoodEven the most polarized of next-door neighbors could use a good shared laugh experience these days — and even as our Count Basie Theatre continues to reinforce its reputation as a premier stop for big-time touring comics, two separate events in the coming nights serve to point out that  live comedy is a big tent, with room for more than just the tried and true stand-up standard.

Returning to the Basie boards for a third (or is it fourth?) appearance tomorrow night, October 13, author and essayist David Sedaris once again displays the audience-friendly skills that have allowed him to transfer his celebrated sense of humor from the printed page (Holidays On Ice, Me Talk Pretty One Day, Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim and other best selling collections of essays, observations and occasional tall tales) to the performance stage, as witness his Grammy nomination for the audio version of Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls. It’s a dexterity that’s allowed him success in formats ranging from Off Broadway theater to public radio and even children’s books — with a road show that will find him reading from his excerpted works, riffing on recent events, and interacting with the audience, sometimes in ways that might give pause to even the most “fearless” of comedy-club commandos.

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art-alliance-classThe Art Alliance on Monmouth Street is one of 15 Red Bank area nonprofit entities named as grantees in the Monmouth Arts 2017 ArtHelps program.

Press release from Monmouth County Arts Council

Some two dozen arts groups in Monmouth County — 15 of them based in Red Bank and surrounding communities — have been named by Monmouth Arts as the recipients of their ArtHelps Local Arts Program Grant Awards for Fiscal Year 2017.

Designed to help Monmouth Arts meet its mission to enrich the community by inspiring and fostering the arts, the grants will result in over 3,000 high quality, low cost art events (art exhibitions, concerts, dance, theater, film and festivals) estimated to reach over 800,000 people. The 24 awarded grants totaled $94,500, including $3,500 in mini-grants that will be awarded during the year for smaller arts projects by organizations including new and emerging groups.

The awards were presented at a networking meeting held at House of Independents in Asbury Park on September 21, an event during which Monmouth Arts premiered their new website, and special guest Michael Pilla of Pilla Creative Marketing spoke on building your audience with email marketing and Facebook ads.

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mumford fortune 072716 2The Eastern Branch of the Monmouth County Library in Shrewsbury hosts an exhibit about Red Bank’s T. Thomas Fortune House, seen here during a student tour in July. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.) 

Press release from T. Thomas Fortune Project Committee

The fourth annual T. Thomas Fortune Birthday Celebration (a fundraiser hosted recently at the Oyster Point Hotel under the title “Fortune . . . Telling the Truth”) kicked off a string of events to highlight the restoration of the T. Thomas Fortune House, a National Historic Landmark, into the T. Thomas Fortune Cultural Center.

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umcommunities_at_the_wesleyan_housing_mission_teamUnited Methodist Communities President / CEO Larry Carlson and Vice President of Housing Cindy Jacques (rightmost and second from right), join Housing Mission Team Leader Gertrude Kehleay (third from left) and associate team members (left to right) Deede Bolger, Monique Degivenchy, Tanya Sweet Preston, Kerileigh Sherman, Jeanette Edghill, Dee Carmichael, and India Santos.

Press release from United Methodist Communities

New Jersey managed to escape Hurricane Hermine earlier this season, and now Hurricane Matthew. Imagine for a moment that you’ve had to flee you home due to a natural disaster, like Superstorm Sandy, or because of crisis, war, and conflict. Now imagine you’ve received a Health Kit containing basic necessities: a hand towel, washcloth, comb, nail file or clippers, soap, toothbrush, adhesive bandages, plastic bag and toothpaste.

Knowing these nine items can change the outlooks and lives of vulnerable people all over the world, all five of United Methodist Communities’ affordable housing campuses (The Wesleyan, Red Bank; Wesley by the Bay, Ocean City; Covenant Place, Plainfield; Bishop Taylor, East Orange; and PineRidge of Montclair) chose United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) Health Kits for a mission project. The team also felt motivated to show compassion and affirm human worth and dignity.

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stewart-goodyearPianist Stewart Goodyear helps usher in a new season of New Jersey Symphony concerts at the Count Basie Saturday evening. 

Continuing a decades-long and beautiful relationship with the Count Basie Theatre, the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra returns to Red Bank Saturday night for the first in a new season of concerts — and to sound the keynote in the company of a performer who’s been branded a “phenomenon” by music critics and fans alike.

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brittany-james-painting-copyRecent paintings by local artist Brittany James (below) are on display at Broad Street’s Salon Concrete, beginning with a reception Saturday evening.

brittany-jamesFor the 10th and latest in a series of art and cultural events hosted at Salon Concrete, the downtown Red Bank hair studio takes a slight turn toward the cosmic with “Return of Saturn,” a solo exhibit of recent oil paintings by Asbury Park resident Brittany James.

This Saturday, the salon opens its doors for an opening party that pairs an appearance by the featured artist with a photo shoot of models whose hair will be styled by Salon Concrete’s stylists and colorists, taking inspiration from James’ art.

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ceteraPop crooner and former Chicago frontman Peter Cetera (above) takes it to the Count Basie stage on Thursday night…while Jay Siegel (below) brings The Tokens of “Lion Sleeps Tonight” fame to town in a Friday package of Old Time Doo Wop.

jay-siegelAs a charter member of the pop institution that is the band Chicago, his was one of several different voices that took the lead on their 1970s radio hits — most notably “25 or 6 to 4” and “Feeling Stronger Every Day.” As the group survived and thrived into the 1980s, however, it was the buttermilk-soul voice of Peter Cetera that best defined the Chicago sound, during a next-wave run of signature recordings that included “If You Leave Me Now,” “Hard to Say I’m Sorry,” “Baby What a Big Surprise,” and “You’re the Inspiration.”

The singing bassman brought that crooning capital to a solo career that kicked off in earnest 20 years ago, and that has netted him multiple nominations for Grammy Awards — and even an Oscar nod, thanks to a slew of soundtrack standouts from such films as Karate Kid 2, Pretty Woman, Three Men and a Baby and Chances Are. It’s all part of a considerable catalog that forms the foundation of Cetera’s set, when he visits the Count Basie Theatre tomorrow night, October 6, for a concert that keynotes an October musical interlude on the famous stage.

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trt two river theater 2012From press materials by Two River Theater 

Two River Theater, under the leadership of Artistic Director John Dias and Managing Director Michael Hurst, has announced the major grants and awards the theater has received for its 2016/17 Season. Total funding for the season currently exceeds $500,000 in grants.

In addition, Two River Theater Company has announced the scheduling of a fundraiser Halloween Ball for 7 p.m. on Saturday, October 22. Costumed attire is “highly recommended” for the event in which all proceeds benefit TRTC’s programs and operations, with “ghoulish delights by et al.” and live music by New Life Crisis also on the agenda. Tickets ($200) can be reserved through the theater’s box office, and more information (including details on sponsorship and underwriting opportunities) is available from Camille Susarchick at (732)345-1400 x1805 or

Read on for full details on the generous supporters and major funders of this year’s TRTC schedule.

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david-bromberg-2-500x332Master multi-instrumentalist David Bromberg (above) brings his Big Band AND special guests to a belated-birthday concert at the Count tomorrow night…while Scott Bradlee’s Postmodern Jukebox (below) maintain the retro-rocking groove on Wednesday.

PMJ-PR-shotIt’s become something of an annual must-see appointment for music-mad fans on the greater Red Bank Green — or it might have been, had it not skipped a year in 2015. But when Grammy-lauded multi-instrumentalist and musicologist David Bromberg returns with his 12-piece Big Band to the Count Basie Theatre tomorrow night, October 4, he’ll be making up for hurt feelings and lost time with a special Big Band Bucket List Birthday Bash that finds the well-mannered virtuoso and good-humored entertainer (who turned 71 this past September 19) joined for the occasion by some folkie friends who are headline-worthy performers in their own right.

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project-fx-2017Press release from Count Basie Theatre

The third annual edition of PROJECT FX, the statewide student film competition presented by the Count Basie Theatre and Bank of America, is now live at Starting now, students enrolled at any New Jersey high school or college can visit the site to learn about entering the competition, with an internship experience with Sony Pictures Classics, a high-end Sony camera, and $1,000 cash at stake as the contest’s grand prize.

On Saturday, March 18, 2017, the Count Basie Theatre will proudly host the daylong PROJECT FX Festival, which will include workshops with film industry professionals, plus a showcase of the top vote getters in both the high school and college categories.

PROJECT FX is open to students enrolled in any New Jersey high school or college as of September 1, 2016. Students have until January 15, 2017 to enter their films, which will then be judged upon by a panel of regional and industry-wide experts. Last year’s PROJECT FX competition and festival attracted more than 80 high school and college applicants from throughout the state (go here to view last year’s finalists).

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