DOLPHINS: STILL OUT THERE

Dolphin110908A dolphin swims in the Shrewsbury River near the mouth of Navesink late Sunday afternoon.

The pod of Atlantic bottlenose dolphins that took up residence in the Shrewsbury and Navesink rivers this summer and autumn continues to ply those waters, even as temperatures gradually grow cooler.

In response to an inquiry about the number of dolphins and their status, redbankgreen received this reply this morning from Teri Frady, spokeswoman for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the federal agency charged with protecting the animals:

NOAA had an observation team of dolphin biologists on the water for three days during last week. Initial observations put the animals in two separate groups but with mixing, generally one around Oceanic & one south of the Highlands bridge. They were observed feeding (bay anchovy, menhaden positively ID’d), and around the Highlands Bridge during some parts of the days. Behavior appeared normal. I have asked for a slight clarification on the numbers, but we confirmed at least the same 12 as at the end of Oct.

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RED BANK POLICE LOG

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Here’s the latest crime report from the Red Bank Police Department, covering the week of October 31 to November 7. Entries are unedited.

Criminal Mischief occurring on 10-30-08 at Tower Hill Ave. Victim reported that unknown person(s) spray-painted the side of house and parked vehicle. Ptl. Beau Broadley.

Theft occurring on 10-31-08 at Monmouth St. Employee reported that unknown white male stole a Giant’s flag which was hanging on an outside wall of the building and fled. Ptl. Matthew Ehrenreich.

Graffiti reported on 10-31-08 at Williams St. residence. Victim reported that unknown person(s) spraypainted graffiti on side walk of residence. Ptl. David Smith.

Criminal Mischief occurring at N Bridge Ave. on 11-1-08. Victim reported that unknown person(s) tried to pry open the passenger side door on parked vehicle in lot . Entry unsuccessful. Ptl. John Camarca.

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MONMOUTH DEM TALKS SPOILS

The decisive election race remains undecided, but a top Monmouth County Democrat is getting ready to take a close look at “a handful of well-paying jobs” if the party wins control of the board for the first time in 24 years, according to today’s Asbury Park Press.

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And the party affiliation of job-seekers may be a factor in determining who gets jobs that frequently pay $100,000 a year or more, Freeholder John D’Amico tells Press reporter Bob Jordan.

D’Amico says that party ties may be a factor in picking among job applicants “if there are more than two or three equally qualified people interested in a particular position.” He stresses that the review has not yet begun.

D’Amico’s comments were made as both major parties await the results of the John Curley-Amy Mallet race for the second of two seats on the board. Republicans had a 3-2 majority going into the election; a win by Mallet, of Fair Haven, would tip control to Democrats.

Republican Lillian Burry, Curley’s running mate, retained her seat, and Mallet’s slatemate, Glenn Mason, lost. Now, only 18 votes separate Mallet and Curley, out of more than 271,000 cast, with some 3,200 provisional ballots to be reviewed and counted.

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IN oRBit WITH THE BEATLES, KINDA

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This weekend’s local entertainment offerings include two note-perfect explorations of the vast Beatles repertory.

The first, scheduled for tonight at the Two River Theatre, is by a band of local musicians with a taste for off-the charts Fab Four stuff such as “Martha My Dear.”

The other, slated for Saturday night at Middletown High School South, features the touring production of the perennial crowdpleaser Beatlemania (last seen on Broadway) in a show that not only goes for musical verisimilitude, but overall ‘tude, right down to the period clothing.

Both shows are fundraisers, so the sonic high comes with the good feeling of doing something nice to help out — in one instance, the Red Bank Charter School, and in the other, a Lincroft woman with a rare disease.

It won’t be long before these opportunities pass, so run for your life on over to Red Bank oRBit for your ticket to ride…

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LITTLE SILVER COPS: GUN FOUND IN CAR

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Six days after police in Little Silver arrested a Red Bank man on drug possession charges, they arrested him again Wednesday after finding a loaded pistol and holl-point bullets in his impounded car, the Asbury Park Press reports today.

From the article:

Around 2:25 a.m. Oct. 30, Officer Michael Lahey stopped a BMW on Fox Hill Drive for a motor vehicle violation, Police Chief Shannon Giblin said.

The driver, Kareem J. Smith, 19, of Red Bank, was charged with possession of a controlled dangerous substance, believed to be cocaine, the chief said. Smith also was issued motor vehicle summonses, police said.

He was released from the Monmouth County Jail, Freehold Township, after posting bail set at $15,000.

Police impounded the BMW, and after further investigation by Lahey and Sgt. Daniel Shaffery, they searched the car and found a loaded .357 Magnum revolver inside, Giblin said.

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CONDO PLAN VOTE POSTPONED

Drsparkeryellow_2Bank_st_red_2Bank_st_white_2Vacant houses on, Drs. Parker Boulevard (left) and opposite sides of Bank Street (center and right) would be razed and replaced with 11 townhouse condos. (Click images to enlarge)

A hearing to set the terms under which the RW @ River’s Edge condo project could be built was postponed last night at the request of the builder, today’s Asbury Park Press reports.

Meantime, attorneys for Red Bank and an affordable-housing advocacy group prepared to appear before the state Council on Affordable Housing next week over a challenge that the proposed 11-unit condo project gave rise to.

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RED BANK ARTCRAWL, IN oRBit

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Today’s edition of Red Bank oRBit offers a rundown of gallery exhibits already underway or opening this week in Red Bank, including the work of Duane Keiser, whose untitled painting at left is among those now hanging at Laurel Tracey Gallery on White Street.

It’s an artcrawl, if you like, complete with wine and cubed cheese. In fact, it includes a stop that’s a must on any Red Bank pubcrawl — Jamians’ Food & Drink, the new incarnation of what used to be Echo on Monmouth Street. Think of it less as a restaurant/bar with paintings on exhibit than a gallery with a highly convenient, fully stocked bar.

Opening there tonight: a show by Hopperesque painter Travis Radcliffe.

Get the crudité at Red Bank oRBit

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CONDO PROJECT ON TONIGHT’S AGENDA

RwplanAn architect’s rendering of the proposed RW @ River’s Edge condos.

A proposed 12-unit West Side condo project that was the flashpoint in a legal challenge to Red Bank’s efforts to provide affordable housing is up for final approval by the zoning board.

RW @ River’s Edge, envisioned as replacing several abandoned homes at the western ends of Drs. James Parker Boulevard and Bank Street, was the basis for a challenge by the Fair Share Housing Center of Cherry Hill, the Asbury Park Press reports.

That led the the state Council on Affordable Housing last week to temporarily strip the borough of the right to approve any applications for new market-rate housing, according to the Press’ Larry Higgs.

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DEMS WATCHDOG FREEHOLDER VOTE COUNT

Today’s Asbury Park Press reports that Democrats have dispatched four volunteer lawyers to oversee the handling and counting of an estimated 3,200 provisional ballots cast Tuesday in the Monmouth County Freeholder race.

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There’s no official count yet of the ballots, nor of their contents, leaving the matter of who won — Amy Mallet of Fair Haven or John Curley of Middletown — unresolved.

From the Press:

According to unofficial results from the Monmouth County Clerk’s Office, Mallet has 135,688 votes, compared to 135,670 for Curley.

Mike Mangan, spokesman for the county Democrat organization, said he’s confident Mallet’s lead will hold up, in part because tallies of provisional votes “usually break for us.”

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FOR NOW, RED BANK IS BLUE BANK

RbvotersVoters exit the Hook & Ladder Fire House on Mechanic Street, site of the district 1 polling station, after casting their ballots Tuesday.

Long an island of aqua in a red county, Red Bank went inky blue this year, throwing itself behind the presidential candidacy of Barack Obama and taking away from Republicans the only two seats they held on the borough council.

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According to the Monmouth County Clerk’s office, the county overall went for McCain/Palin by a margin of 51.3 percent to 47.4 percent over Obama/Biden.

But separate data provided by the borough campaigns showed all nine Red Bank districts lining up behind the president-elect, giving the Dems a 2,889 to 1,556 victory.

That’s nearly 65 percent of the total. District 9, in the southwest corner of town along Newman Springs Road, was most emphatic in rejecting McCain, going for Obama by a 440-to-37 vote majority. (Click map to enlarge)

At the local-race level, the sweep was nearly as thorough.

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CURLEY-MALLET: DOWN TO PROVISIONALS

Amy Mallet of Fair Haven and John Curley of Middletown remain locked in squeaker of an election for Monmouth County Freeholder this morning.

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“It’s quite a battle,” Republican Curley tells redbankgreen.

The county clerk’s website has Mallet, a Democrat, leading Curley by just 18 votes, out of more than 271,000 cast betwen them. Curley says he heard late last night that the difference was just 11 votes.

Either way, the outcome is likely to turn on the interpretation of roughly 3,000 provisional votes, and how many of them survive scrutiny, Curley says.

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A NEVER-ENDING CLERKSHIP, IN oRBit

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They just keep coming and coming, an endless line of stoop-shouldered pilgrims in undersized t-shirts.

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We’re talking about fans of fillmmaker Kevin Smith, who stream into his Red Bank comic-books-and-tchotchkes emporium, Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash, looking for detailed directions to the Middletown convenience store that he made famous and that, in turn, launched him into the Hollywood firmament.

Well, the The Return of the Smith is upon us, as Himself makes his annual Q&A appearance at the Count Basie Theatre Friday night — another sold-out affair — and then hunkers down with a pocketful of Sharpies for one of his autographing marathons at the Stash on Saturday. (The photo above was taken during his August, 2006 appearance at the store; that one lasted into the pre-dawn hours.)

Today, Red Bank oRBit apprises this phenomenon from the eyes of the guys who run the store.

Never too soon to start oRBiting…

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SEA BRIGHT: GOP OUSTS INCUMBENT PAIR

Sb_voterNinety-three-year-old Jacqueline O’Shea signs in to vote at Borough Hall in Sea Bright Tuesday.

By SUE MORGAN

A year after a disputed mayoral race that has yet to be resolved in court, Sea Bright voters dispatched two Democrats from the borough council and replaced them with Republicans — one of whom has held the office before.

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That gives the GOP a 5-1 advantage on the council starting January 1.

According to the Monmouth County Clerk’s office, C. Read Murphy, who served as a council member in the 1990s, was the top votegetter, pulling in 441 out of 1,664 votes cast, or 28.19 percent. His running mate, beach club owner James LoBiondo III, netted 454 votes, or 27.28 percent.

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RUMSON: GOP RAMPART SLIGHTLY DINGED

RumsonvoterA Rumson voter signs in at the Forrestdale School polling station Tuesday afternoon.

By SUE MORGAN

By 8p, Democratic Borough Council candidate Michael Steinhorn expected to have picked up his campaign signs, all 25 or so of them, that he had strategically posted around Rumson.

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Ninety minutes later, when he learned had come in last behind two GOP council incumbents, Steinhorn was already gearing up to be an unelected advocate for more than 1,300 residents who supported his challenge to years of one-party leadership in town.

“They haven’t had a choice (of candidates) in 25 years,” Steinhorn told redbankgreen, echoing the central plank of his campaign message.

The other 5,100 or so voters decided to stay in the comfort zone that Republicans have provided them over the town’s 101-year history, a run of dominance so complete that no Democrat is believed ever to have been elected to borough office in that time.

Shaun Broderick won a second term with 2,537 votes, or nearly 40 percent of the total, and Council President Robert Kammerer trailed closely at 2,516 votes, or 39.3 percent, returning him for a third term.

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LITTLE SILVER VOTERS TOSS INCUMBENTS

Out are two Republican incumbents and in come a Democrat and an independent after Little Silver voters dealt their harshest rebuke to the GOP in a decade Tuesday.

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Of 6,445 votes cast, the largest share, 1,681, went to attorney Daniel O’Hern Jr., for 26.08 percent of the total. He was followed by hardware store owner Dan Levine, who captured 1,540 votes, or 23.89 percent, according to the Monnouth County Clerk’s website.

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FAIR HAVEN: GOP STILL HOLDS SWAY

Fh_boro_hallNo changes planned here.

Incumbent Republicans Jerome Koch and James Banahan held off a challenge from a single Democratic candidate in the race for two seats on the Fair Haven Borough Council Tuesday.

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A NEW PRESIDENCY, SEALED

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Sen. Barack Obama has been elected president of the United States of America.

redbankgreen encountered these two homemade tributes to Obama’s presidential campaign in the yards of homes in Fair Haven Tuesday morning.

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The one on the top is from a driveway on Fair Haven Road; the one below is from River Road. (Click to enlarge)

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CURLEY BY, AHEM, A HAIR?

CurleyhomeJohn Curley at home in 2006, when home was Red Bank.

Figures relased by the Monmouth County Clerk’s office indicate that former Red Bank Councilman John Curley leads his nearest Democratic opponent by just 108 votes out of 250,000 cast between them in the race for county freeholder.

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Absentee and provisional ballots could determine the outcome of this one.

“We don’t know yet” if he won, Curley told redbankgreen by phone at 10:40p. “We’re in a donnybrook.”

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DEMS DRUB GOP IN RED BANK

LewiswinsJuanita Lewis embraces her campaign manager, Christine McKenna, after her win in Tuesday’s Red Bank Council election.

Red Bank voters skied straight down the Democratic column in Tuesday’s elections, hoping to elevate the first-ever African-American to the presidency and making the borough council into a solid, single-party affair for the first time in a decade.

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Knocked aside in the process were incumbent Councilwoman Grace Cangemi, seeking her first full council term, and her running mate, John Tyler Jr.

Slated to join the council on January 1 are Ed Zipprich and Juanita Lewis, who styled themselves as “progressive Democrats” in the mold of Howard Dean.

But unlike squeakers of recent years, this race wasn’t even close. Zipprich racked up 2,343 votes and Lewis, 2,322 in an unofficial tally. Cangemi netted 1,813 and Tyler, 1,625.

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MOSE ALLISON, IN oRBit

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Somehow, over a 50-year career, jazzman Mose Allison has never made it to this part of the Jersey Shore.

But he’ll be here this week, with a stop at Tim McLoone’s Supper Club in Asbury Park Thursday night.

Such an auspice does not get glossed over by Red Bank oRBit. We tracked the pianist and singer down for an interview.

Check out what the roadworthy Allison has to say about crappy pianos, respect that falls short of fame, and the numerous kisses sent his way by the likes of the Who, Van Morrison and the Clash.

Only in oRBit, jazz fiends…

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‘I GET TO BE A PART OF HISTORY’

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Election officials are expecting record turnout today, according to the Asbury Park Press.

Here’s what redbankgreen found in the first hour of voting activity in Red Bank this morning:

6:00a: More than a dozen voters stand in line in the predawn darkness outside the 6th district polling station at the Calvary Baptist Church on Bridge Avenue (above).

After voting, Linda Vega tells redbankgreen that she’s not usually up and about so early.

“I’m excited,” she says. “I get to be a part of history.”

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COOL SCHOOL VID ON RED BANK HISTORY

Lest we forget, Red Bank is still in its centennial year, and reminders of that milestone continue to pop up now and again.

The latest is the above video, shot and produced by four students, aged 14 to 17, who enrolled in the Count Basie Theatre’s Cool School this summer.

The kids, who did all the shooting, are Dylan Smart, Jenn Lewis, Mike Hagberg Jr. and Jack Calabro, says Yvonne Scudiery, the Basie’s director of education.

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NEW VOTERS MAY NEED PAPER BALLOTS

Monmouth County is one of six counties statewide that may have to revert to paper ballots for first-time voters because of a crush of last-minute registrations, today’s Star-Ledger reports.

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From the article:

Warren, Atlantic, Bergen, Monmouth, Ocean and Salem counties recently began sending letters warning the voters that they are registered but must cast provisional paper ballots, said state Division of Elections spokeswoman Susan Evans. Other counties, including Morris and Somerset, may also require some voters to cast provisional ballots.

Elections Director Robert F. Giles said the only difference is that their provisional ballots will be counted Wednesday instead of election night.

“They’ll have a private booth off to the side with a privacy screen to fill out the ballot,” Giles said. “It’s a paper ballot and it gets put in a secure envelope. It just gets counted beginning the next day.”

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