DANGEROUS INTERSECTION UNDER REVIEW

petersA police officer is now stationed at Maple Avenue and Peters Place following crossing guard John Mego’s departure. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

One of Red Bank’s busiest intersections is getting a safety review from local officials following the departure of one of its crossing guards over safety concerns.

They didn’t broach the topic Monday night until Audrey Oldoerp, a mother of three, pleaded with the council to make the intersection safer.

“If a crossing guard feels  the intersection is unsafe, how can my children and I cross with any peace of mind?” Oldoerp asked.

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RED BANK GIRL COMPETING FOR CROWN

andrea-johnAndrea John won the National American Miss Competition for New Jersey and will compete for the national title next month. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Andrea John, a seven-year-old from Red Bank, competed last year in the National American Miss competition, an annual pageant for girls and young women, and was disappointed to place tenth overall. Her mother, Anisha, said she had her eyes set on coming back this year and taking away the crown.

“She was determined to be queen, so we entered again,” she said, “and now she’s queen.”

For her age group, Andrea’s officially a “princess queen,” but nonetheless, she’ll compete against some 48 other princess queens next month for the national title in Anaheim, Calif.

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PARKING-SHORTAGE RULE TO BE SUSPENDED

Rclarge2_010508By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

In an effort to pull Red Bank’s struggling business districts out of an economic hole, the borough council is making a revenue concession aimed at attracting new stores and restaurants.

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FIREFIGHTERS TOUT PREVENTION

Scenes from the annual Red Bank Fire Prevention Fair put on by the town’s volunteer firefighters in the White Street municipal lot Sunday. Photos 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.)

GUARD HURT IN STRUGGLE WITH SHOPLIFTER

call-in-the-authoritiesMiddletown police arrested a Perth Amboy man and were looking for his female companion after a botched shoplifting attempt ended up in a struggle with a store security guard.

The incident occurred at the Target store on a Route 35 shortly after 5p Sunday, according to a statement issued by the police department spokesman, Detective Lieutenant Stephen Dollinger.

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NO DETAILS YET ON FAIR HAVEN FALL

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Nearly three days after the rumored death of a teenager who fell from a Fair Haven roof Friday night, borough authorities have yet to disclose any information about the matter.

According to unconfirmed reports, a 14-year-old boy fell off a roof at the Navesink River end of Hance Road shortly before 9p. He was airlifted to a hospital a short time later by a medevac helicopter that landed at Fair Haven Fields.

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COPS BUST MAN AS POT DEALER

authorities2bRed Bank police arrested a 22-year-old man for intent to distribute after he was found to have “20-odd bags” of marijuana in his possession late Friday night, according to department spokesman Captain Darren McConnell.

Veirick Kirlew, whose last known address is in Ocean Township, was also charged with hindering apprehension and intent to distribute within a school zone, McConnell says.

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TAILGATING FOR A WORTHY CAUSE

bbq3bbq2Football fans gathered at Red Bank Regional Saturday afternoon for a pre-game barbecue that raised funds for The Source, the in-school program that offers counseling, tutoring, dental care and other services to students. Afterward, Raritan High beat RBR 35-34 in double OT. The Asbury Park Press has a full report on the game. (Photos by Peter Lindner. Click to enlarge)

THEFT OF ANTIQUE CAUGHT ON TAPE

rbpd-patrolcarThe crime reports below were provided by the Red Bank Police Department for the week of October 01 to October 8, 2010. The information appears here unedited.

Criminal Mischief occurring on 10-1-10 at Bridge Ave. Victim reported that unknown person(s) broke the glass of a kitchen window. Ptl. John Camarca.

Criminal Mischief occurring on 10-1-10 at Leonard St. Victim reported that he observed a unknown juvenile subject break side view driver’s side mirror on parked vehicle. Ptl. Jorge Torres.

Criminal Mischief occurring on 10-2-10 at Shrewsbury Ave. Report of graffiti spray-painted onto side of building by unknown subject(s). Ptl. Jorge Torres.

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FALL VICTIM MEDEVACED TO TRAUMA CENTER

fh-medevac-100810Emergency personnel prepare to transfer a fall victim from an ambulance to a waiting medevac helicopter at Fair Haven Fields Friday night. According to an unconfirmed report, a 14-year-old boy fell off a roof at a residence on Hance Avenue Road in Fair Haven shortly before 9p. Further details were not immediately available. (Click to enlarge)

JAZZ ARTS ACADEMY’S IN SWINGIN’ SESSION

jazzartsacademy

Veteran jazzman and Hammond B3 ace Radam Schwartz works with teen musicians at the Count Basie Theatre as part of the Jazz Arts Academy program that kicks off this weekend. Inset: the combo of next-generation jazz stars who provided the soundtrack to the annual Jazz Arts Project party in Red Bank. (Photos courtesy of Jazz Arts Project)

By TOM CHESEK

The scene at Joe Muccioli‘s Red Bank backyard on a recent Sunday was one swinging soiree, a BBQ bash that went well beyond the suburban norm of storebought salads, skeeters and citronella.

The occasion was the annual meeting/ barbecue of the borough-based Jazz Arts Project, the nonprofit arts entity for which the man called “Mooch” serves as artistic director. And the guests at the home shared by hosts Cathy Zuravnsky and Joe ran to the likes of Valery Ponomarev, the Russian born trumpet ace (and charter member of Art Blakey‘s Jazz Messengers)  — not to mention Art Topilow, the eminent oncologist who moonlights as a concert pianist.

Up on the deck that doubled as an impromptu stage, SNL vet Joe Piscopo entertained the crowd with his signature Sinatra stylings (an act he’ll reprise at Tim McLoone’s Supper Club when he appears with Mooch and the 10-piece Red Bank Jazz Orchestra on October 23).

But the biggest impression of the afternoon was probably reserved for the event’s featured “house” band, a sextet of teenaged — in some cases even tweenaged — student jazz musicians that boasted the chops of next-generation trumpeter Wallace Roney Jr. It was an unexpected surprise that served as a keynote to (and a perfect lead-in for) an equally surprising announcement.

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TIME TO GET WET

sb-firetruckSea Bright Fire Department’s newest addition. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Since buying a new fire truck this summer, Sea Bright’s fire department has put it to work, dumping water on fires from Monmouth Beach to Highlands.

Now it’s time for the department’s ladder truck to get wet.

On Saturday, the department will initiate its half-million dollar apparatus with a wet-down at the station, replete with typical firehouse party stuff: food, drinks and a pig on a spit.

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FINAL DAM REPAIRS SLATED TO BEGIN

nrrd-062910Navesink River Road over the Poricy Pond culvert shortly after it reopened in late June. (Click to enlarge)

A portion of Navesink River Road in Middletown will be narrowed to one lane of traffic as the final touches are made to earthen dam that collapsed in March, forcing a three-month closure, Monmouth County officials announced yesterday.

Work on the section of road adjoining Poricy Pond, between Hubbard Avenue and Route 35, is expected to start later this month and be is expected to be completed by mid-December, according to a county press release.

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BUDGET STILL MIDDLETOWN’S HOT TOPIC

byrnes-fingerSean Byrnes prodded his fellow committee members to reassess its budget planning process Monday night. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Now that Middletown has a budget in place, tax bills are starting to arrive in mailboxes.

As is customary, there’s some literature along with the bills to explain how the taxes for the year break down. But this year’s fact sheet is rubbing some people the wrong way, including the committee’s lone Democrat, who says, well, it really isn’t all that factual.

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TIKI TAKE-OFF

tiki-barBeach bar season is officially over, as Donovan’s Reef had its tiki bar craned off the beach in Sea Bright Thursday morning. It’ll go into winter storage. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

RED GINGER FINDS A NEW HOME

red-gingerRed Ginger Home is relocating from Monmouth Street to Broad Street at the end of the month. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Rcsm2_010508Five years ago, starting a new business on Broad Street wasn’t the most feasible plan for Rob Amend and Michael Yavorski, on account of the higher rents. So they went to the freshly-completed Noglows Building at 65 Monmouth Street, where they have built a broad client base and even won a few accolades along the way.

It recently came time for Amend and Yavorski to revisit the Broad Street idea. With a little help from stores moving out, an opportunity presented itself for the two to move their furniture and interior design business, Red Ginger Home, down the street.

“The rents are still not great on Broad, but five years ago we were a new business and now we’re established,” Amend said. “Now we feel comfortable expanding.”

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WHERE HAVE I SEEN THIS?

where_100710

Last week‘s animated Where showed a painting in a store window with nighttime traffic streaking by in the reflection.

One reader wrote with apparent certainty that it showed the place where he buys his ice-cold Bud in Little Silver.

Um, maybe you should switch brands, Bud.

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OLDEST HOME GETS ITS HISTORICAL DUE

white-house1Red Bank’s oldest house, on South Street, was finally put on the state’s list of historic places last week. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

A tour of Mary Gilligan’s South Street home is, quite literally, a trip back in time, starting with the walk up the driveway, as you take a look at the white Dutch Colonial. The upstairs windows, shrunken versions of the ones downstairs, are the first sign that something is different about this house.

Is that a one-story or two-story? Actually, it’s a one-and-a-half story.

Then you walk through the front door, which can only be unlocked with a skeleton key, and walk on wide wooden floor boards that have been there since the 1790s. Through a couple short doorways — “For anybody above my height, the rule is, watch your head,” the vertically-challenged Gilligan said — to the kitchen, where Gilligan uses a wooden chopping block and slaughter table, which have been in the home for centuries, to store various kitchen items. Eighteenth century families did not have CuisinArt collections or varieties of Swiffer’s to amass, so storage space is at a premium in Gilligan’s home.

“The hope is to have more cabinets so I can actually put things away,” she said.

One project at a time. Her most recent feat came last week when the house, the oldest in Red Bank, was accept to the New Jersey Register of Historic Places, an endeavor six years in the making.

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BUILDER COPS PLEA IN UNION STREET FRAUD

UnionhousevillageThe theft occurred during the development of the Union Street Village condos on the former site of the Olde Union House restaurant, authorities alleged. (File photo. Click to enlarge)

A Middletown building contractor pleaded guilty to theft and agreed to repay the owners of the now-gone Olde Union House in Red Bank more than $1.4 million, the Asbury Park Press reports.

The plea by 55-year-old Timothy Hurst came one week before the scheduled start of his trial on theft by deception and other charges arising from his role in developing the Union Street Village condos on the former site of the restaurant, according to the Press.

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FANCY FOOTWORK AND A FLOORSHOW

perry_487_ir

Meet Perry Jo. When he’s not busy tending to the toes and (ahem) other parts of customers at his pedicure and waxing salon, Estella Nails, on Broad Street in Shrewsbury, the athletic Jo takes it to the hoop.

The hula-hoop, that is.

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WAITING FOR RETIREMENTS, ROUND TWO

mtown-cruiserMiddletown is anticipating a second wave of retirements, especially among police officers. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

With more retirement pension reform pending in the state legislature, Middletown, already gouged by a flood of retirements this year, is anticipating a second wave of sayonaras to hit town hall.

A proposal by Governor Chris Christie would increase the early-retirement age, and years of service requirement from 25 years to 30. That, town attorney Brian Nelson said, “precipitated a whole second wave of retirements we didn’t even expect.

“Anyone that’s close to their 25 years wants to get out now,” Nelson said.

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SEA BRIGHT MAYOR SUFFERS MILD STROKE

keelerCouncil President William Keeler is filling the role of mayor while Maria Fernandes recovers from a mild stroke. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Sea Bright Mayor Maria Fernandes is in a rehabilitation center after suffering a mild stroke about two weeks ago, officials said Tuesday.

Council President William Keeler is filling in for Fernandes, as he has the last three council meetings, until she’s well enough to return to the dais.

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PAIR ARRESTED IN PEPPER-SPRAY ATTACK

call-in-the-authoritiesA Red Bank woman and an Asbury Park man were arrested following an assault of a borough man over money, Red Bank police report.

The incident occurred Monday morning in a parking lot at the Montgomery Terrace apartments on the West Side, according to a statement issued by department spokesman Captain Darren McConnell.

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