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RUMSON CUTS FAIR HAVEN FROM REC SPORTS

img_5139111409The change affects kids in the rowing program at Victory Park, above, and a lacrosse program. (Click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Citing capacity issues, Rumson has dropped Fair Haven from its recreation sports partnership, a move that isn’t sitting well with coaches and parents from both riverside towns.

At Tuesday night’s council meeting, Rumson’s governing body caught an earful from miffed residents who accused the borough of making a hasty decision and pleaded for officials to work harder to continue what some called the most successful recreation partnership in the area.

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STATE POLICE RAID WEST SIDE HOUSE

just_in1New Jersey State Police raided a house on Red Bank’s West Side before dawn this morning and were seen removing undisclosed material in plastic bags.

Red Bank police, as is customary in cases led by other agencies, assisted on the raid. But they had no information to share on what was found or if arrests were made.

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OVER A DOZEN FUN WAYS TO HELP OTHERS

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Hollywood’s Siobhan Fallon Hogan, TV’s Real Housewife Caroline Manzo and Broadway’s Michael Mulheren appear at local fundraisers in the coming days.

There’s a gala for the neediest of our neighbors that’s studded with familiar faces from movie screens and Broadway stages. A sneak-preview of a film from a major studio, raising funds for the arts right in our backyard. There’s even a benefit dog walk, graced by a reality TV star who’d be able to tell us a thing or three about catfights.

donegoodlogoYou don’t need to boast of any showbiz connections to have Done Good for your community — sometimes all you need to do is come on out, take in some lovely early-autumn weather or enjoy some of the best of local cuisine. Cheer on a committed competitor from the crowd, or pound some pavement for a charitable cause. Donate a used book, buy a used book — or bring back those library books, no questions asked.

In this edition of Done Good, redbankgreen pulls together more than a dozen ways that you can be part of something big in the days and nights to come. It’s an opportunity that begins this weekend and continues on through the first half of October — with benefits that will be felt locally (class trips, school sports, food banks, animal rescues, holiday traditions, clean streets) as well as globally (clean oceans).

The Done Good rundown continues, right around the corner.

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CROSSING GUARD UPDATE

hot-topic rightLittle Silver police have issued a statement describing the circumstances under which a crossing guard was struck by a vehicle this morning.

Here it is:

A vehicle operated by Woody Saleh, 54 of Little Silver was traveling west on Markham Place. The vehicle came to a stop at the intersection of Markham Place and Branch Avenue and proceeded to turn right onto Branch Avenue when it struck the school crossing guard, William Gibson, 65 of Eatontown.

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COUNCIL UNLIKELY TO FILL LEHNERT’S SEAT

fh-boro-hallTwo weeks before he took his own life, Councilman John Lehnert had informed Mayor Mike Halfacre that he was ending his re-election bid, Halfacre says.

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Though Fair Haven’s Republican committee has suggested three candidates to fill the council seat left empty by John Lehnert, who committed suicide last week, the borough council has no intention of filling the spot on an interim basis, Mayor Mike Halfacre tells redbankgreen.

In fact, GOP officials had already begun the process of replacing Lehnert on the November 2 ballot after Lehnert told Halfacre about three weeks ago that he was ending his re-election bid, Halfacre says. Lehnert’s withdrawal had not previously been publicly disclosed.

“I think out of respect for John we should leave the seat vacant until the end of his term” on December 31, Halfacre said.

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COMING SOON: SEA BRIGHT POOL CLUB PLANS

p-house1Plans are moving forward to develop the site that once was the Peninsula House. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

There’s a reason Read Murphy went from former councilman back to councilman in 2008: pool club. Now, with a year left on his term, the Republican is putting his personal guarantee on a campaign promise that, until this point, has been little more than talk.

For nearly a decade, local government has struggled to find ways to generate revenue along the beachfront — ideas that included buying Donovan’s Reef to developing a beach club and building a boardwalk. But always on the table for discussion, and often, for planning, was developing a public pool and building a cell phone tower. Now Murphy is making a bold claim for Sea Bright’s future.

The cell tower, public pool and, possibly, a restaurant, “will be operating in 2012,” he said.

“This is going,” Murphy said.

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CROSSING GUARD STRUCK IN LITTLE SILVER

just_in1A crossing guard was taken away by ambulance after being struck by a car at his post at the corner of Branch Avenue and Markham Place in Little Silver this morning, redbankgreen has learned.

Little Silver police Sergeant Dan Shaffery says the guard’s injuries “appear to be minor and are not life-threatening.” The victim was taken to Monmouth Medical Center in Long Branch, he said.

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SEA BRIGHT TWEAKS CAT HERDING LAW

sb-catA cat hanging out in Sea Bright. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Sea Bright is moving forward on its cat control ordinance, despite warnings from the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service that the borough could face heavy fines for implementing a trap-and-release program.

Borough officials hope to have a program in place before the start of breeding season, which typically begins around February and can last for ten months.

“There are a lot of kittens roaming around right now,” Councilwoman Dina Long said. “Now we have to catch them.”

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VACANT HOME USED IN FIREFIGHTING DRILL

fh-fauxfire-2Volunteer Fair Haven firefighters during a smoke exercise Monday night. Below, the head of a mannequin used in the demonstration became separated from its body. (Click to enlarge)

fh-faux-fire-0927101By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Fair Haven firefighters got a dose of action last night in a simulated fire at a vacant Harrison Avenue home.

About 30 volunteers spent three hours running an assortment of drills at the home, which is slated to be torn down, said chief Jim Cerruti.

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A TOUCHING EXPERIENCE

truck-1At the controls: a young participant in Saturday’s Touch-a-Truck event at the Red Bank Middle School enjoys his time behind the wheel. The event was hosted by Monmouth Day Care Center, a private, nonprofit child care facility in Red Bank. (Photos by Peter Lindner. Click to enlarge)

A BRAND NEW DAY, OVER AT TRTC

intimateapparelposterTwo River Theater Company inaugurates its first season of mainstage productions under new artistic director John Dias  when INTIMATE APPAREL opens tomorrow night.

By TOM CHESEK

For Red Bank’s Two River Theater Company, the 2009-2010 season was one of critical/commercial highs, big helpful friends, blizzard-bound opening nights, and major shakeups in the front office — followed with a quiet summer that was almost crowned by near-tragedy.

With the turn of the seasons, however, company founder/ executive producer Bob Rechnitz and the TRTC team prepare to roll out the first in the borough-based professional stage troupe’s 2010-2011 slate of shows. It’s a team that features several new faces — not least of which is John Dias, the longtime veteran of the New York Shakespeare Festival/Joseph Papp Public Theater who on August 16 stepped into his new job as TRTC’s artistic director, the high profile position previously held by playwright/ director Aaron Posner.

The 46-year-old Dias inherits a full schedule of shows, all of which were announced prior to his selection by the Two River board of directors. It’s a schedule that started in earnest Saturday night, with the curtain-raiser for Intimate Apparel.

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FILM REGS PAUSED; TAXI TALK RETURNS

film-makingA film crew tied up the Broad Street sidewalk earlier this month to shoot a commercial. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

A proposal to implement a permit system to film in Red Bank may fall flat before it goes to a vote. In putting that idea on the shelf, the borough council pulled a controversial taxi ordinance back to the forefront after a brief summer hiatus.

As far as the film ordinance goes, some council members object to its purpose, to require film crews to apply for a permit, which would come with a fee. The idea was introduced last month to keep tabs on video activity in town and ensure production crews are following local laws.

It’s a little too Big Brother for councilmen Michael DuPont and Art Murphy.

“To me, it’s just too much government over a single thing,” Murphy said.

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A LOCAL FEST, PLUS GUINNESS AND OYSTERS

Scenes from Saturday’s Only One Red Bank Guinness Oyster Festival, captured by Peter Lindner. (To enlarge the photo display, start it, then click the embiggen symbol in the lower right corner. To get back to redbankgreen, hit your escape key)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Frank and Amanda Miles, of Tinton Falls, had rave reviews for the fried calamari they munched in the White Street parking lot.

Robin Reilly and Naomi Lebofski, who came from Nutley and Rutherford, had a couple of sandwiches, and said they had a blast.

They washed it down with water and white wine.

At the Only One Red Bank Guinness Oyster Festival, something seemed off with the selections of these four people. But that’s OK.

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LEHNERT LAID TO REST

funeral-3Scenes from the funeral of Councilman John Lehnert in Fair Haven Saturday. (Photos by Peter Lindner. Click to enlarge)

funeral-2Fair Haven Councilman John Lehnert, who took his own life last Tuesday, was laid to rest Saturday following a funeral mass at the Church of the Nativity.

A former Fair Haven policeman and member of the governing body since 2007, Lehnert was 46 years old. He is survived by his wife, Elaine, and two daughters.

The Asbury Park Press carried an obituary on Thursday.

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WIND AND WAVES SWAMP RUMSON REGATTA

regatta2Competitors in the second race of the day found themselves getting wetter than anticipated near the Oceanic Bridge. (Photo by Peter Lindner. Click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

The first collegiate rowing regatta on the Navesink River in decades was cut short Saturday morning after wind-driven waves swamped sculls in the second race.

In a sport where weather rules, these things happen, said Dan Edwards, who organized the event.

“It’s not unusual,” he said. “It happens all the time. It’s just part of the sport.”

Still, Edwards deemed the regatta a wild success.

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MIDDLETOWN DAY BOUNCES BACK

mtown-dayMoonbounces and other rubbery, bouncy things were heavily used by children for Saturday’s Middletown Day. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

To the casual observer, Middletown Day was another Middletown Day — music, firetrucks on display, bouncy houses that echo the joyous shrieks of children.

But for a while there, a tough budget season dictated there wasn’t going to be a Middletown Day this year.

A little rallying, though, resurrected the annual tradition before it had a chance to be completely scratched from the calendar.

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WITH TURF JOB DONE, RED BANK WANTS MORE

basie-renderRed Bank is going after  grant money to fund more upgrades at Count Basie Field. Above, a rendering for a baseball and field hockey/soccer field. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Now that work is done at Count Basie’s football field, Red Bank is looking for more money for more turf.

The borough is submitting an Open Space grant application to Monmouth County, looking for up to $250,000, to lay down turf for a baseball and “multi-use” field.

“It will really give us a lot more flexibility,” borough engineer Christine Ballard said.

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WEBSITE UNVEILS DETAILED SCHOOL DATA

How many children are in the average seventh-grade classroom at the Red Bank Middle School, and how does that compare to the statewide average?

screen-shot-2010-09-27-at-95035-amWhat percentage of the cost of operating two schools in the Rumson district comes directly from borough taxpayers, and how does that compare to nearby districts?

Where can one get math and verbal-skills proficiency results for students at Red Bank Regional?

NJ Spotlight, a public-issues news site launched earlier this year, has compiled and posted comprehensive data on every New Jersey public school’s performance and spending.

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TOWNWIDE YARD SALE: IT’S A FAMILY THING

Scenes from Saturday’s Red Bank Townwide Yard Sale, captured by Peter Lindner. (To enlarge the photo display, start it, then click the embiggen symbol in the lower right corner. To get back to redbankgreen, hit your escape key)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

One of the rarest finds of Saturday’s Red Bank Townwide Yard Sale was not one that could be put in a bag or loaded up in the trunk. It wasn’t for sale, either.

It was on Maple Avenue, at the home of Pat Kears, who was selling a slew of household items with her family, which in itself is quite ordinary.

But “You’re not going to come across a yard sale that has a mother, a daughter, a granddaughter and all her grandchildren,” said Michelle Picold, Kears’s granddaughter. “We’re unique.”

The annual sale, now in its third year, has very much become a family affair, and not just for Kears, but many in town.

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FIRE DEPARTMENT BOAT VANDALIZED

rbpd-patrol-webThe crime reports below were provided by the Red Bank Police Department for the week of September 17 to September 24, 2010. The information appears here unedited.

Criminal Mischief occurring on Bank Street on 9-16-10. Victim reported that unknown subject broke glass window in residence. Ptl. Michael Campanella.

Lost cell phone occurring on 9-19-10 at Maple Ave. Victim reported placing his cell phone described as a grey Samsung Reality phone down and upon returning discovered it was missing. Ptl. Michael Campanella.

Criminal Mischief occurring on 9-20-10 at Rector Place. Victim reported scratches on the paint of parked motor vehicle in the area of the trunk. Ptl. Matthew Ehrenreich.

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ANSORGE BOOKKEEPER ADMITS FRAUD

hot-topic rightA former employee of Red Bank-based Ansorge Unlimited pleaded guilty Thursday to defrauding the advertising and publishing firm of $403,000, the Monmouth County Prosecutor announced today.

As part of a plea bargain, Rebecca Cirillo, 34, of Atlantic Highlands, admitted embezzling the funds from the publisher of Red Bank Red Hot magazine over the course of more than two years. She also pleaded guilty filing a fraudulent tax return.

Prosecutors are asking that Cirillo get five years in prison when sentenced in January by Monmouth County Superior Court Judge Richard W. English.

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RED BANK BOOKED FOR TOWNWIDE YARD SALE

book-barn-2Volunteers from the Friends of the Red Bank Public Library gathered at a barn on South Street this week to sort through books slated for inclusion in this weekend’s three-day book sale at the library, to be held in conjunction with the Townwide Yard Sale. (Photo by Peter Lindner. Click to enlarge.)

yard_infopack_gfx2It’s sale time, as Saturday’s Red Bank Townwide Yard Sale gets ready to unfold under warm and sunny skies.

Today, the Yard Sale website carries the third-annual event’s information packet for shoppers, a downloadable PDF that includes a locator map and addresses of registered sellers, along with brief information about what’s for sale.

More than 115 homes are participating in the border-to-border bargain bonanza, which this year has a new host: the Friends of the Red Bank Public Library. In conjunction with the event, the group is kicking off a three-day used-book sale at the library Saturday morning.

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A DO-GOODER’S GUIDE TO THE WEEKEND

billdenverb1

Images by Shrewsbury resident and official Monmouth Park photographer Bill Denver remain on display this weekend, as the Meridian Health Steeplechase returns the great steeplechase meet tradition to the greater Green on Saturday. (courtesy William Denver/ Equi-Photo)

There’s a chance to give a sick child access to the best available care, or give a talented teen a boost on pursuing her dream. Find a forever home for a rescued stray, or feed a hungry neighbor. Support your community’s volunteer responders, or even Touch a Truck for early education. All you have to do? Enjoy a great concert, take in a pleasant autumn afternoon, or chow down on some of the finest culinary creations from the kitchens of the greater ‘green.

Of course, if you don’t mind getting your fingernails dirty, we’ve got a community cleanup effort you can really sink your ankles into.

Yes, DONE GOOD is back on redbankgreen, and this time out we’ve put together advance word on five “fun”-raising endeavors, going on these final days of September. It’s a look into the feelgood future that almost begs a name change for this feature, from the past tense to something along the lines of “Gonna Do Good” or “The Best is Yet to Come.”

Before we give you the goods on our ten picks, here’s a reminder to revisit some weekend offerings that were written up recently in this space — including Saturday’s Red Bank Townwide Yard Sale, with proceeds from registration fees going to the event’s new host, the Friends of the Red Bank Public Library; cycling events for every style and pace (funds raised for the Count Basie Theatre Foundation and the local cancer support group The Wellness Community); a high-profile Jody Joseph concert on Saturday (proceeds dedicated to the women’s cancer retreat Mary’s Place By The Sea); and Sunday’s Only One Red Bank Guinness Oyster Festival (a benefit for the Booker Cancer CenterCancer Institute of NJ and Red Bank RiverCenter’s townwide promotions).

It’s true what they say: you can Do Good and have fun doing it —and it all starts tonight, right around the corner.

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