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SHREWSBURY: BIG LAUNCH FOR LI’L TECHIES

Press release from Monmouth County Library

A new tech tool, Playaway Launchpad, has been introduced in the Children’s Department of the Monmouth County Library.

Available in all 13 library branches — including the Eastern Branch on Broad Street/ Route 35 in Shrewsbury — these child-friendly tablets are pre-loaded with ten high-quality, ad-free learning apps grouped by age and grade level. Each simple-to-use bright orange tablet has a 7-inch high-definition touch screen, and is durable enough to withstand heavy use by little hands. Each has a unique theme, which may include princesses, animals, dinosaurs, transportation, art and more, in subject areas that help build English language arts, math, and science skills.

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SHREWSBURY: PURR’N POOCH AWARDS GRANTS

Purr'n Pooch boxer PatPaulPhotoNew Life Boxer Rescue of Kenilworth is among 10 regional animal rescue and rehab nonprofits to be recently awarded grants by the locally based Purr’n Pooch Foundation. (Photo by PatPaulPhoto)

Press release from The Purr’n Pooch Foundation

Since its founding in 2010, the Shrewsbury-based, volunteer-run Purr’n Pooch Foundation for Animals has awarded more than $100,000 to non-profit animal rescue and welfare organizations, ensuring that organizations helping animals in need are getting proper funding and help from outside sources.

Recently, the Foundation announced the awarding of grants to 10 non-profit organizations — including three based in Monmouth County: All Fur Love Animal Rescue of Freehold, Cat Assistance Network, Inc. of Allenhurst, and Mid-Atlantic Bulldog Rescue of Belmar. Donations are used for day-to-day operations, emergency relief, spay/neuter efforts, veterinary care, equipment, construction, vehicle purchases, educational programs and special projects.

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ON THE GREEN: AUTHOR! AUTHOR! AUTHORS!

Jersey Shore CookbookFrom guided tours of the great restaurants, landmark buildings and vivid VIPs in our local communities, to the resting places of the most storied European monarchs, the month of April is a Book Fair of opportunity for anyone interested in a cracking-good nonfiction read — and the days and nights ahead offer readers numerous opportunities to meet and chat with the people who bring you the books, at locations all around the greater Green.

It’s a slate of events that kicks off this Thursday, April 7, in the surprising setting of Sea Bright’s Ama Ristorante — a venue that comes into sharper focus with the revelation that the 6 p.m. event is a cocktail-hour reception for The Jersey Shore Cookbook: Fresh Flavors from the Boardwalk and Beyond. Author (and founder of Jerseybites.com) Deborah Smith will be on hand to sign preview copies of the soon-to-be-released volume, a collection of recipes from some of the Shore’s most popular restaurants and eateries (Ama included). Also featured is an insider’s guide to navigating the local foodscape, as well as “the effects of Superstorm Sandy on nearly every establishment in the book and what it took to come back after the devastation.” Attendees at the two-hour reception will enjoy hors d’oeuvres, a complimentary beverage, a demo by Ama Executive Chef Charles Lesbirel, plus a $15 gift card — and tickets ($50 per person; $75 per couple) can be reserved at (732)530-9760.

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SHREWSBURY: Y SWIMMERS ARE STATE CHAMPS

YMCA swim teamThe Community YMCA’s Aquarockets swim team celebrates its NJ state championship at last week’s competition in Lancaster, PA.

Press release from The Community YMCA

For the first time, the Aquarockets swimmers of The Community YMCA won the New Jersey YMCA State Championships, an annual competition comprised of two meets. The swim team for ages 13 and up represents the membership of the Shrewsbury-based CYMCA organization and its Monmouth County facilities, which include the Family Health and Wellness Center on Maple Avenue in Red Bank.

A total of 139 swimmers from the Aquarockets team competed in the state championship meets. The competition for ages 13 and over took place March 10 through 13 at Franklin and Marshall College in Lancaster, PA, while the 12 and under meet took place February 26 through 28 at the Ocean County YMCA in Toms River.

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RBR TEENS SERENADE SHREWSBURY SENIORS

RBR VPA Shrews HomesteadersIn January, the Shrewsbury Homesteaders invited students from Red Bank Regional’s VPA to serenade them at their monthly meeting. Pictured are (back row, left to right) Jalen Willis, Ricci Bigelow, piano teacher Camille Thompson, Pieter Lootsma, Joe Ferguson, Griffin Perry, and (front row, left to right): Shrewsbury Homesteader President Carolyn Alt, Victoria White, Jenna Smith, Danielle Wolf, Homesteaders Program Chairperson Jerry Viracola.

 Press release from Red Bank Regional High School

Every month, the senior citizen group known as the Shrewsbury Homesteaders meets at the borough’s historic Presbyterian Church to conduct their business. Sometimes they mix a little pleasure with business — and following a speech by Shrewsbury Mayor Don Burden at their most recent meeting in January, the Homesteaders were treated to the instrumental talents and beautiful voices of Red Bank Regional High School and its Visual and Performing Arts Academy.

The classically trained piano and voice major students performed a variety of their repertoire for the Homesteaders. Griffin Perry performed “The Tempest” by Beethoven; Peter Lootsma played “Sonata N. 14 in C Minor” by Mozart, while Joseph Ferguson offered “Prelude and Fugue N. 17 in Aᵇ Major” by J.S. Bach (all three students are from Little Silver). Pianist Jalen Willis of Neptune City showcased the Jazz genre with “Joes’ Fun Mood Blues” by Joe Utterback.

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SHREWSBURY: CYMCA ANNOUNCES NEW VEEP

Press release from The Community YMCA

Barry MartinThe Shrewsbury-based Community YMCA, one of the area’s leading nonprofit organizations, is pleased to announce the appointment of Barry Martin as the new Vice President of Health, Wellness and Camping.

In his leadership role at the CYMCA, the Little Silver resident will direct operations of the Y’s flagship Health and Wellness facility in Red Bank and Camp Zehnder, a 140-acre outdoor day camp in Wall Township. Working with a team of about 300 employees and volunteers, he will focus on increasing membership and program participation, maintaining service excellence and building community relationships to support the Y’s cause.

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SHREWSBURY: GUILDED GIFTS OF THE SEASON

Angelica._Colored_pencils.Anzhelika Doliba’s pencil portrait “Angelica” (above) and Bob O’Keefe’s stained glass piece “Poe” (below) are among the works on display during the Guild of Creative Art’s Holiday Show 2015. 

Bob O'Keefe's Stained Glass

Bob O’Keefe’s Stained Glass

Long before our neck of Monmouth County could boast its own wine-and-cheese gallery scene or paint-and-sip studio, there was the Guild of Creative Art, the creative collective that’s watched the contemporary landscape of the greater Red Bank area take shape over the past 55 years, from the window of its ever-fascinating house on Shrewsbury’s Route 35 main drag.

This Sunday, December 13, the evergreen local treasure welcomes the public to a yearly happening that stands as a complement to the hustle and bustle of the surrounding stores and stripmalls: the annual All-Member Holiday Show.

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SANTA’S COMING TO SHREWSBURY BORO

Santa ShrewsPress release from Shrewsbury Recreation

Santa will be making his annual visit to Shrewsbury families on Sunday, December 13, from 3 until 6 pm. He will gladly spend a few minutes chatting with your children, posing for pictures, and delivering a small gift.

Those families wishing to participate in this annual tradition are asked to drop off their gifts at the Shrewsbury Fire Department (783 Broad Street) on Saturday, December 12 between noon and 6 pm.

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SHREWSBURY: CYMCA LAUNCHES GIFT DRIVE

Press release from The Community YMCA

sea lane shippingLocal residents and businesses are invited to help make the holidays brighter for struggling families in Monmouth County, by giving to The Community YMCA’s annual holiday gift drive.

Coordinated by the Y’s Counseling and Social Services branch, the gift drive helps to ensure that many of county’s neediest children and their families can experience the joy and surprise of the holiday season, in the words of coordinator Christina DeAngelis.

According to DeAngelis, in 2015 the Y was able to distribute nearly $60,000 in gifts to 407 children and 180 families served by the Y’s Counseling and Social Services branch — thanks to the generous support of the community, and of businesses like Sea Lane Shipping of Red Bank, whose employees are pictured participating in the initiative for the fifth consecutive year.

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SHREWSBURY: THE SUBJECT IS RACE

GildaKeynotespeakerOn Wednesday, December 9, the League of Women Voters of Greater Red Bank will present an interactive discussion about race relations in America today, with special guest panelist Gilda Rogers (pictured), co-founder of Citizens for a Free and Open Diverse Society. Scheduled for 7 pm at the Monmouth County Library on Route 35 in Shrewsbury, the all-welcome panel looks at racially based discrepancies on how the media describes events, and examines how our feelings, experiences and unconscious reactions affect how we relate to others. Contact madelyngail@gmail.com or call (732)895-3866 for additional information.

CYMCA HONORS MIDDLETOWN SCHOOL CHIEF

Press release from The Community YMCA

Wm O GeorgeAt its upcoming Y Cares Annual Benefit, the Shrewsbury-based Community YMCA will honor the Middletown Township School District and its Superintendent of Schools, William O. George III, Ed.D, for their commitment to youth development.

During the event, hosted on Saturday, September 26 at the CYMCA’s Camp Arrowhead facility in Marlboro, the school district will be presented the Community Partner Award, while Dr. George (pictured) will be acknowledged with the Distinguished Citizen Service Award.

The Y Cares Benefit will begin at 5:30 pm with cocktails in the Carr Pavilion featuring music by Carl Gentry, a graduate of Middletown schools. Dinner by Merri-makers Caterers will follow, along with dancing to the music of Tim McLoone and The Shirleys. The evening will include silent and live auctions, in addition to a 50/50 cash raffle.

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SHREWSBURY: COUNTY NAMES LIBRARY CHIEF

2015_Library_Commission_w_Tolchin_&_Burry_AugustIn a meeting at the Monmouth County Library’s Eastern Branch in Shrewsbury, Judith Tolchin (third from left in front row) was named director of the library system by the members of the County Library Commission.

Press release from Monmouth County Library System

Judith Tolchin, Acting Director of the Monmouth County Library system since January, 2014 was appointed Library Director at the recent meeting of the County Library Commission, held at the Eastern Branch location in Shrewsbury.

Tolchin, who has been with the library system for 23 years, immediately outlined a vision and her plan of action and expectation for the coming years through a Powerpoint presentation, covering everything from the need and desire for facilities improvements to the headquarters in Manalapan, to grants, corporate sponsorships and other means to raise funds to supplement county taxes that finance the library system’s 13 branches and 14 member libraries.

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SHREWSBURY: CYMCA ANNOUNCES BENEFIT

CYMCAPress release from The Community YMCA

On the evening of Saturday, September 26, The Community YMCA will be hosting its Y Cares Annual Benefit, an event dedicated to the Y’s ongoing community programs and initiatives at its Monmouth County facilities, including the Family Health and Wellness Center in Red Bank.

Board members Bryan Kuderna and Remsen Straub (pictured left to right, with CYMCA President and CEO Rhonda Anderson) have been named co-committee chairmen for the event, a fundraiser for the Y Cares financial assistance program for kids and families in need of free and reduced program and membership fees, as well as community initiatives such as water safety programs for at-risk youth.

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SHREWSBURY: CYMCA NAMES NEW LEADERSHIP

Press release from The Community YMCA

At its 141st annual meeting, held Wednesday, June 17 at Rumson Country Club, The Community YMCA Board of Directors elected Joseph Oriolo chairman and chief volunteer officer. Oriolo replaces Patricia Whittemore, who led the board for two years.

The Shrewsbury resident has been a member of the Y board since 2008, and most recently served as vice chairperson. He also served as chairman of the Y’s Governance Committee.

“We are grateful for Patty’s leadership and we are pleased to welcome Joe as chairman and chief volunteer officer,” said President and CEO Rhonda Anderson. “He will continue to lead us forward to help increase our visibility as a cause-driven organization that strengthens the lives of over 20,000 people we serve in Monmouth County and beyond.”

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