Something called the Men’s Expo and Texas Hold ‘em Tournament parks its snorting hog outside Convention Hall tomorrow, bringing the musky scent of Axe Body Spray to the seabreeze-kissed timbers of Asbury Park this non-Super weekend.

Among the attractions: exhibits featuring the latest in health, automotive, electronics, sports, finance, fashion and new-product launches.

And, oh yeah: billiards-in-bikinis champ Jennifer Barretta and professional nudie/pornstress (not to mention clinical psychologist, according to Wikipedia) Victoria Zdrok.

But for those looking for a lower dosage of testosterone, this weekend also serves up an Italian cooking demonstration and a concert by singer-songwriter Beth Arentsen, both at the Middletown Township Public Library.

They’re all on the front burners in today’s edition of Red Bank oRBit, boys and girls.

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HydrantsHelp keep them clear, please.

The Red Bank Volunteer Fire Department is asking residents to lend a hand in keeping fire hydrants accessible in case of emergency.

Though department members are dispatched during and after snowfalls to remove snow around hydrants, Deputy Fire Marshall Tommy Welsh says the department appreciates the
help of residents and business owners in keeping the hydrants clear.

“We could use the help,” Welsh says.

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An item in today’s Newsday says a 56-year-old Tinton Falls man arrested last August on charges of robbing five banks — including one at the City Centre strip mall in Red Bank — faces up to 18 years in prison following guilty pleas yesterday.

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Unedited entries from the Red Bank Police Department activity log for the week of January 7 to 14.
Burglary occurring at Monmouth Street residence on 1-10-09 between the hours of 1100 and 1400. Victim reported that residence was entered by unknown person(s) who stole several items. Stolen were three laptop computers, jewelry and DVD’s. Ptl. Patrick Kennedy, Det. Robert Clayton.

Criminal Mischief occurring on 1-12-09 at West Bergen Place. Unknown actor(s) broke the window to parked vehicle, gained entry and removed the plastic around the steering column, tampering with the ignition. Ptl. Paul Perez.

Theft occurring on 1-11-09 at West Front Street. Employee reported that unknown person stole her wallet from purse, which was in an office. Wallet contained driver’s license, I.D. etc. Ptl. Jorge Torres.

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IMG_7210Don Abrams of Little Silver breaks down his 'icebird' after the first sail of the season on the Navesink Wednesday afternoon.

A couple of ice boaters took to the Navesink River yesterday afternoon after the ice reached the requisite four inches.

One of them, Don Abrams, a member of the North Shrewsbury Ice Boat & Yacht Club, tells redbankgreen it was the first time this season that anyone had sailed the river.

But the ice was a bit rough, and coated with too much snow for his liking, he says.

A recording on the club's 'iceline' (732.747.5665), updated Wednesday evening, reports Navesink ice of three-to-five inches, with areas of as little as two-inch thickness.

Needless to say, anyone with an itch to go out on the ice is urged to take precautions.

Will the ice last, with daytime temperatures rising above freezing today and tomorrow?

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ObamawitnessesThe new president recited the oath of office, and Red Bank tuned in.

They interrupted their usual routines and silenced their lunchtime chatter to watch, their eyes drawn to television screens and the making of what all agreed was American history.

redbankgreen gathered the impressions of witnesses to the inauguration of
President Barack Obama at four Red Bank locales yesterday: Pilgrim Baptist Church and Frank Talk Art Bistro & Books on Shrewsbury Avenue; the Bagel Station on Monmouth Street; and Zebu Forno on Broad Street.

Read on to get a taste of what was being thought and felt.

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ObamastripJane simmonsJane Simmons at Pigrim Baptist Church on Tuesday.


Like many of her contemporaries, Jane Simmons remembers the indignity of segregation.

As a young woman growing up in North Carolina, "I sat in the back of the bus," Simmons
says. The law said she had to. The high school she attended was all black, also by law.

After graduating in 1961, she moved to Red Bank, where much of her family lived, "to
better myself, and get a better job."

That year, for the first time, she got on a public bus and chose her own seat.

The feeling was strange because, she says, she "didn’t know any other way" but to automatically sit in the

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Call in the authorities

A registered nurse was arrested while on the job at Riverview Medical Center Saturday, charged with scheming with a Bayshore pizza delivery man to distribute a painkiller, according to Gannett News Service.

The arrest of 48-year-old Vivian Seaman of Union Beach was made in connection with the Friday bust of 32-year old Paul Hatch of Keyport following an investigation by Keyport police, Gannett reports.

Police allege Hatch was dropping off the drug oxycodone while he delivered pizza for a Domino’s store.

From the story:

Police said they still are trying to determine where Seaman obtained the drugs.

Seaman — who began working at the hospital in 1998 — has been suspended without pay from her position at Riverview pending the results of the investigation, said Sara Scipioni, a hospital spokeswoman.

“Our own internal investigation following this arrest also did not reveal any irregularities at Riverview,” Scipioni said in a statement. “We are deeply concerned by any allegation of improper conduct by a member of our team, regardless of where the alleged misconduct may have occurred.”

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6thdistrict_2Red Bank voters lined up at dawn on Nov. 4 to participate in the election that today puts Barack Obama in the White House as the 44th President of the United States of America.

Among the one to two million Americans expected by D.C. police to be present is 88-year-old Elmer ‘Ace’ Godwin of Shrewsbury, one of the surviving Tuskegee Airmen, the African-American pilots who fought in World War II.

Today’s Asbury Park Press has an article about the airmen and their thoughts on today’s main event.




Where in the world is the Red Bank International Film Festival?

After a three-month postponement from its usual October slot on the calendar, the festival's website still reports that "the invasion has been rescheduled" to this coming weekend.

But no events are scheduled, leaving hordes of
desktop DeMilles, coffee-house Coppolas and still-clerkin’ Smiths with no place to screen their films.

Today's edition of the Red Bank oRBit cracks open the projection room door in search of answers.

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The head of the Marine Mammal Stranding Center in Brigantine tells the Associated Press that the five remaining Navesink and Shrewsbury river dolphins haven't been seen since Thursday and may be dead


Bob Schoelkopf, the center's co-director, tells the AP that increasing ice in the rivers, coupled with the fact that no one has reported seeing the animals in more than three days, indicates they may have perished. 

From the report:

"I don't think they're alive anymore," he said Monday. "They
haven't been seen since Thursday, and the ice started freezing
then. We probably won't see them until the spring when they wash up

"The last time I saw them, they were in such a weakened
condition, so thin, that I can't see how they would have
survived," he said.

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One of the most powerful pieces of theater to come along in a while hits the main stage of the Two River Theater this week.

Called ‘ReEntry,’ it’s a play gleaned from hundreds of hours of interviews with returning combat veterans of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars. And it’s told using their own words.

In today’s edition of Red Bank oRBit, editor Tom Chesek has a probing interview with director KJ Sanchez, who co-wrote the play for the TRT with co-author Emily Ackerman. There, she talks about keeping her own agenda out of the play; how the process of building the play changed her view of the military; and the boot camp that she and the cast went through to get ready for the production.

Today’s oRBit also debuts a new feature that enables restaurants, arts organizations, clubs, bands and others to advertise special events for as little as a week at a time for a modest fee. Look for the ‘Flyerboard’ in the upper left column, and give it a whirl, whether you’re promoting an event or, as a consumer of arts and entertainment, just looking for something to do.

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Kaminskaadamski3Halina Kaminska-Adamski outside her new store.Rcsm2_010508

Haven’t we been in here before, this narrow space next door to David Levine Salon?

Indeed, we have, though it looks and feels quite different.

Longtime redbankgreen readers may recall our feature about Gisela Soliman as she closed down Town Trimmings, her decades-old sewing-supply store on Monmouth Street in 2006. Or our story on the Four Chicks and a Rooster, the general-store themed business owned by camera-shy Irwin Katz that opened in the same space in 2007.

Well, the great retail churn being what it is, there’s a new store at 24 Monmouth. It’s called Adams Imports.

Proprietor Halina Kaminska Adamski has given the interior a spiffing-up from the days of Soliman’s workbench counter and Katz’s pine-board-on-sawhorses esthetic. Now, the place is cool and hushed as a garden bower in summer.

But like any other business owner, Adamski enters the retail fray with high hopes that her idea proves durable.

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Making her first-ever appearance in Red Bank tomorrow night: comic Kathleen Madigan, the pint-sized scourge of pompous polsLarry King and optimists in general.

Today’s edition of Red Bank oRBit — the pint-sized scourge of boredom in these parts — tracks Madigan down for a pre-Basie interview in which she riffs on her worst gig ever, midnight show crowds and somewhat-misleading military recruitment advertising. 

Only in Red Bank oRBit

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Call in the authorities
A Wall Township police captain who was tried and acquitted in Red Bank Municipal Court (as a neutral venue) of DWI is leaving his job with a $500,000 settlement package, today's Asbury Park Press reports.

The Press says Bernard Sullivan — who was about to become Wall's police chief when he was arrested for drunken driving by a subordinate two years ago — agreed to resign as part of a settlement of his $5 million false-arrest lawsuit against the township.

From the story:

Sullivan's resignation takes effect March 1, just in time for
Sullivan to acquire 25 years on the job toward his retirement pension.
Sullivan will not return to work before his retirement; he will use his
accrued vacation time during that period, according to the agreement he
signed Wednesday.

"It was an unfortunate situation, and it is
best that all parties involved part ways and the Wall Township Police
Department move forward with our current administrative staff," Mayor
Michael Clayton said.

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Pilgrim Baptist aired the final McCain-Obama debate on a large screen in the worship hall in October. A live inauguration screening and luncheon will be held in the church basement.

Of the many takeaways from the election of Barack Obama as president, Rev. Terrence Porter, pastor of Red Bank's Pilgrim Baptist Church, sees in it hope for a renewal of the idea of community service.

"I'm not a politician, but I think it began eroding around the time of Reaganomics and what came after that," he says. "People weren't as concerned about the working class."

With a former community organizer in the White House, Porter says he's enthused by the possible return to a sense of responsibility for those who need a hand.

In that spirit, Pilgrim Baptist is opening its doors to all comers for an inauguration luncheon in its basement Tuesday morning. And Porter is hoping that senior citizens in particular will gather to watch the swearing-in, so he's arranging to shuttle them from Red Bank Senior Citizen Center to the church and back.

"My heart's desire is that our senior citizens will be able to say, when looking back on this historic event, 'This is where I was,'" he says.

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ColdCars waiting for a green light at the corner of Bridge Avenue and Monmouth Street created a steamy scene last night.

A high near 17 degrees. Wind chill values of 15 below zero.

That's what's in store today and through Saturday morning as temperatures drop with the arrival of an Arctic air mass, says the National Weather Service.

We'll get some moderation of temperatures after that before another Arctic high rolls in, bringing some snow, the NWS forecasts.

Bundle up, kids…

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Tiffanyredbank Murmurs about the Broad Street store's demise are greatly exaggerated, says the manager.

Tiffany & Co.'s 14-month old store in downtown Red Bank isn't going anywhere.

So says Vicky Shortland, manager of the the carriage-trade jewelry and tableware retailer, in via a press release issued by Red Bank RiverCenter this morning. The release was headlined, "Tiffany & Co. Happy in Their Red Bank Home."

While acknowledging that Tiffany, "like everyone else, has been affected by the economic downturn this past holiday season," Shortland declares the company "extremely happy to be a part of the Red Bank business district."

Moreover, having survived the Civil War, the Great Depression and two World Wars, Tiffany is "fully prepared to weather this current economic storm and look[s] forward to being part of the Red Bank community for many years to come," Shortland says.

The release, which was accompanied by a photo of Shortland and Mayor Pasquale Menna beaming next to a

jewelry display case, is a rather unusual form of business PR, which mostly avoids commenting on rumors to avoid giving them added life.

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Bonney, Mike 011409

Michael Bonney in his store yesterday.

Red Bank News, a mainstay retailer of newspapers, magazines, racing sheets and cigars in downtown Red Bank for at least five decades, is about to become yesterday's news.


Owner Michael Bonney tells redbankgreen he'll be out of the space at 2 Monmouth Street by the end of the month.

The departure marks the end of an enterprise whose wall racks once teemed with glossy magazines, comic books and out-of-town papers — an ink-smudged mirror on a patch of bustling, postwar America.

But the newsstand has been living on borrowed time in recent years. Cigarette and newspaper sales have been plummeting. Six
months after he took over the business in March 2007, Bonney stopped selling magazines
as unprofitable, and planned to reposition the store as a dry goods mini-mart while sticking with cigarettes, lottery tickets and soda. But a lack of capital, and a dearth of foot traffic, doomed the effort, he says.

"My head knew from a business standpoint that it wasn't happening," Bonney says. "But it took my heart a while to accept that."

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Where_01.15.09The answer to last week's Where Have I Seen This? may turn out to be something of a head-slapper for readers who couldn't identify it, given the prominence of the building it shows.

One reader ventured that our photo was of a portion of the former Red Bank municipal building at 32 Monmouth Street (now home to Stokaboka). Another guessed the First Baptist Church on Maple Avenue.

Both, needless to say, were incorrect.

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For a drab time of year that's supposed to be all about recharging the post-holiday batteries, there sure are a lot of interesting people passing through this patch of earth we call the Green, all but commanding attention. If you visit redbankgreen's spinoff site Red Bank oRBit, you're sure to bump into a few.

Today, it so happens, you'd bump into Justin Townes Earle, a singer with a voice that would make Hank Williams proud and deft way with both a guitar and a pen.

oRBit correspondent Laura Schneider profiles Earle (yeah, he's the son of country contrarian Steve Earle) about, among other things, his recent move from Nashville to Brooklyn and scouting out some of the best-stocked record stores in the world.

Earle will be making an encore appearance in our area tomorrow night. Get the details, and tune into our interview with the man himself, only at Red Bank oRBit.

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SnowstormDowntown Red Bank during a January 2007 snowstorm.

A shared-services deal with Monmouth County approved by Red Bank officials earlier this week is expected to save the borough hundreds of thousands of dollars in snow removal costs in coming years, they contend.

The savings will result not only from lower direct costs for deicing salt, but will obviate the need for the borough to build a protective dome for the material, as required under new stormwater management regulations, they say.

Borough Administrator Stanley Sickles said the savings on a salt dome alone would be “in the six figures.”

“It’s an excellent deal,” says borough public works director Gary Watson.

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A couple of comments from readers of redbankgreen appear in today's Star-Ledger in a piece about the dolphins in the Shrewsbury River.

Context: Kelly Heyboer's 'Jersey Blogs' column, which samples opinions on matters of interest around the state.

Hey, we go way back, redbankgreen and the Sledger. This site's founder spent nearly four years as a business writer there.

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