WILEY COYOTES EVADE BULLETS AND TRAPS

Though responding to numerous calls of coyote sightings in Middletown, police and other officials haven’t caught or killed any more of the predators since one was fatally shot on May 23.

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Yesterday, at about 2:30p, a policeman fired two shots from his sidearm at one of the animals, but it got away, according to reports in the Asbury Park Press and the Star-Ledger.

The incident occurred in North Middletown, near a dike along Pews Creek between Bray Avenue and Port Monmouth Road, about three miles from where most of the recent coyote sightings have been reported, according to the Ledger.

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VICTORY MARKET WAVES THE WHITE FLAG

Img_1419It’s a wrap as Debra Johnson arranges final details after closing Victory Market for the final time last Friday.

A Red Bank meat business with World War II roots closed its doors Friday after the owners could not agree with the landlord on new lease terms.

Owners Debra Johnson and her daughter, Dana Palmer, had hoped to relocate the business to the English Plaza space recently vacated by Maxwell & Sophie, which moved around the corner to White Street. But faced with daunting costs and delays involved in a change of use at that address, they’ve dropped that plan for now, Johnson said.

“Everybody’s coming in here crying,” Johnson told redbankgreen after she’d locked her doors for the final time Friday afternoon. “I told them, tell it to the landlord.”

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PRESS: TWO FECAL POLLUTION SOURCES ID’D

Visual inspections have led to the discovery of two Red Bank properties believed to have contributed to the high levels of fecal coliform in the Navesink River reported earlier this year, the Asbury Park Press reports today.

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One of the properties is “behind the WaWa store on West Front Street,” where a septic system with holes in it was discharging waste into a gully with a stormwater system pipe in it, the Press reports. The other is a home on the Sea Land Marina property on West Front Street river side of NJ Transit North Jersey Coast Line.

The owners of the home behind the WaWa have been issued a court order to connect the property to the borough’s sanitary sewer system, the Press reports. The owners of the second property, who were using a septic tank because no municipal sewer line is in that location, are now seeking state approval for an above-ground holding tank. In the meantime, the owner is having the existing tank pumped out daily, the Press reports.

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IT’S ON

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Kids

The Red Bank Jazz & Blues Festival kicked off to a terrific start Friday night before a light rain rolled in at about 9p during Billy Hector‘s headline show.

Red Bank’s own Chuck Lambert Band, above, stirred the festival to life. And in the natural amphitheater facing the main stage, a trio of kids enjoyed cold treats.

Below, a fan videotapes Hector’s performance.

Today, weather permitting, there’s a full-schedule of acts from noon to 10p, with festival headliner Big Bill Morganfield slotted to go on at 8:30p.

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EIGHT-BAR BLUES: FESTIVAL SHRINKS TO FIT

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The Red Bank Jazz & Blues Festival might be forgiven for having one monster case of the blues. In recent years, it’s been battered financially and encountered its fair share of literally stormy weather.

Yet the people who pull it together soldier on, this year presenting what corporate types might call a “rightsized” 21st annual edition of a free event that manages to draw music, food and crafts lovers by the tens of thousands, when the weather cooperates.

And almost as if reaching for a good-luck charm, the festival kicks off tonight amid forecasts of iffy weather with local favorite Billy Hector. The firey blues guitarist reprises a headlining role of a few years back that drew the biggest opening-night crowd in the event’s history.

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HOUSEQUAKE: redbankgreen A YEAR LATER

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If these jiggly bottles look familiar, it may be that you saw them when redbankgreen debuted, one year ago today. Or perhaps you came across them while dumpster-diving our archive sometime afterward. (Hey, it’s perfectly sanitary, and a diverting way to spend a couple of hours, we’re told. Grab a cup of coffee and plunge in, if you haven’t tried it.)

The bottles illustrated our stated goal of shaking things up a bit by giving people who live in, work in and visit our corner of the Jersey Shore a different take on what matters, news and feature-wise.

The idea was more focus on people in our town and area, combined with insightful reporting, conversational writing and luscious visuals in a publication that doesn’t view the Internet as an afterthought, but as the medium that matters most for what we’re doing. Which is why, for example, there are so many links in our stories — so you always have the option to go one level deeper into a topic.

It’s also why the bottles jiggle: because they can.

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A SECOND LIFE AT THE INTERNET CAFÉ

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By LINDA G. RASTELLI
Joe Cullity doesn’t like to make a big deal out of his hip injury, and speaks reluctantly about the day he got it — September 11, 2001.

“I was lucky I was late for work,” he says. “I lost a lot of my friends that day.”

A software designer for the New York Mercantile Exchange, Cullity was inside Tower One, waiting at the elevator bank to go up to Cantor Fitzgerald, the bond trading firm, when the first plane hit the building.

“I walked to the back and saw all this debris coming down and flames and people running like hell,” he recalls. “Then I went to the front. Everybody was looking up at the building. I was standing under the door. After a few seconds I ran like a bastard across the street. At that time we thought it was an accident, an idiot controller. We had no idea.”

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HOV LOSSES CONTINUE, MOODY’S REACTS

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“Frustrated” by a housing market that keeps moving in the wrong direction, Red Bank-based Hovnanian Enterprises yesterday reported its third consecutive quarterly loss.

As a result, Moody’s Investors Services cut its ratings on Hovnanian debt issues, saying the homebuilder’s cash flow from operations will likely remain negative amid the ongoing housing-sector slump, according to the Associated Press.

The publicly traded homebuilder, which last year built a new HQ assessed at $19.1 million on West Front Street, said it lost $30.7 million, or 49 cents per share, in its second fiscal quarter, compared to a profit of $101 million, or $1.55 per share, for the comparable 2006 period.

From Forbes.com:

“We are frustrated to report that the housing market has continued to slip further in many locations in terms of both sales pace and sales prices,” said Ara K. Hovnanian, the company’s president and chief executive. “The housing market weakened in the latter part of the second quarter, and the slower conditions have continued into May.”

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