Skip to content

A town square for an unsquare town

redbankgreen

Standing for the vitality of Red Bank, its community, and the fun we have together.

POND GETS OVERDUE WORK, AND A NAME

pomphrey-pond1Dozens of neighbors turned out for the dedication ceremony at Pomphrey’s Pond in Rumson, which recently got a long-awaited dredging. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

It was a long, fetid and at times fractious wait, but it’s over at Pomphrey’s Pond, and on Saturday neighbors of the once-murky Rumson pond took a deep, odor-free breath and exhaled with relief.

Making good on a promise made last year to dredge the locally beloved pond, the borough government held a ceremony marking its completion. Officials also formalized the pond’s name, in dedication to a family who, as its de facto caretakers, have enabled memories of ice skating, fishing and a little bit of youthful recklessness for generations.

“This is sort of a rare event. We only do this about every 75 years or so,” Mayor John Ekdahl told family members at the ceremony. “So you’re a part of history.”

Indeed, dozens of neighbors and families were waiting for that day to come.

Pomphrey’s Pond, which is located across East River Road from borough hall and adjoins the Pomphrey family home of more than 100 years, had become overgrown and filled with muck and sediment. It hadn’t been dredged since 1995, and although it was scheduled for dredging again in 2006, funding, small windows of opportunity in which to work and a series of small mechanical failures put the project on hold.

More recently, the lack of maintenance at the pond — which required permits from the state Department of Environmental Protection — led to the pond giving off an offensive odor and made the spot, normally a regular place for families and children to fish and ice skate, unattractive.

“It was terrible. I never saw it like that before,” said Brian Hyland, who grew up around the corner from the pond. “And there was so much arguing about it.”

Last summer, residents, fed up with years of waiting for the pond to be dredged, pushed local and state officials to bump the pond up on the DEP’s priority list. And it did.

After years of delays, the borough, Monmouth County Mosquito Commission and DEP went to work at the pond in September.

The dredging work is done, and all that’s left to do is restock the pond with fish, Ekdahl said. Then, it can restore itself to local glory that a handful of people reminisced about Saturday.

Allen Gallagher, who married into the Pomphrey family 50 years ago, said he and his friends would skate at the pond in the cold months, and at night, “borrow” power from the electric company to jury rig temporary lighting for night games.

“To come here and skate in this pond when we were 11, 12 years old with our gang was really something special,” Gallagher said. “The family would bring out snacks and they’d keep an eye on the kids.”

Frank Mayo, who lives next to the pond on the southeast side of River Road and was one of the more vocal critics of the council and others for what he characterized as foot-dragging, said Saturday marked an end to the controversy, and now he can enjoy the pond as he intended for so many years.

“All I wanted was to have the time with my daughter, with my family on a nice pond,” Mayo said. “I have that going forward now, and we’re excited about it.”

Remember: Nothing makes a Red Bank friend happier than to hear "I saw you on Red Bank Green!"
Partyline
VOLUNTEERS GET INTO THE WEEDS
Toting plastic trash bags, 51 volunteers conducted a walking litter cleanup on Red Bank's West Side Saturday.
“IT’S A PARTY AT WAWA!”
You wish you could vibe like Brian, who lives on the other side of Hubbard’s Bridge. He caught redbankgreen’s attention in Red B ...
POPE OKS ORATORY
RED BANK: St. Anthony of Padua obtains papal approval to establish Oratory of St. Philip Neri, a community of priests and brothers devoted t ...
RED BANK: NEW MURAL BRIGHTENS CORNER
RED BANK: Lunch Break founder Norma Todd is depicted in a mural painted this week on the front of the newly renovated social service agency.
TULIPS TOGETHER
Spring tulips taking in the sunset outside the Molly Pitcher Inn in Red Bank Monday evening.
RIVER RANGERS RETURN
River Rangers, a summer canoeing program offered by the Navesink Maritime Heritage Association, returns this summer for up to 20 participa ...
DOUBLE DYLAN IN RED BANK
Trucks for a production company filming what one worker said was a Bob Dylan biography have lined Monmouth Street the past two days with cre ...
AFTER THE RAIN
A pear tree branch brought down by a brief overnight storm left a lovely tableau on the sidewalk in front of Red Bank's Riverside Gardens Pa ...
CONE OF UNCERTAINTY
Asked by a redbankgreen reporter why these cones were on top of cars, the owner of the car in the foreground responded: “That’s ...
RAIL RIDER’S VIEW
A commuter's view of Cooper's Bridge and the Navesink River from North Jersey Coast Line train 3320 out of Red Bank Tuesday morning.
PUT ME IN COACH!
Red Bank T-Ball kicked off at East Side park on Saturday morning. The brisk weather proved to be no deterrent to the young players, ranging ...
IT’S A SIGN!
Once proudly declaring its all-but-certain arrival in Spring 2019, the project previously known as Azalea Gardens springs to life again with ...
SPRINGTIME MEMORIES OF CARL
The Easter Bunny getup and St. Patrick’s Day hat that belonged to longtime Red Bank crossing guard and neighborhood smile-creator Carl ...
RED TRUCKS AT RED ROCK
A small dishwasher fire at Red Rock Tap and Grill was put out quickly by firefighters overnight, causing minimal damage. Red Bank Fire Depar ...
CREATIVE COVER UP
The windows of Pearl Street Consignment on Monmouth Street were smashed when a driver crashed their car through them injuring an employee la ...
THEY’RE BACK!
Ospreys returned to the skies over Red Bank this week for the first time since they migrated to warmer climes in late fall. With temperature ...
SPRING IS SPRUNG
RED BANK: Spring 2024 arrives on the Greater Red Bank Green with the vernal equinox at 11:06 p.m. Tuesday.
RED BANK’S FINEST – AND NEWEST
Red Bank Police Officer Eliot Ramos was sworn in as the force’s newest patrolman Thursday, and if you’re doing a double take thinkin ...
EASTER EGG MAYHEM AT THE PARK
An errant whistle spurred an unexpectedly early start to the Spring Egg Hunt on Sunday, which had been scheduled to begin at eggsactly 11am ...
PRESEASON DOCKWORK
RED BANK: With winter winding down, marina gets ready for boating season with some dockwork on our beautiful Navesink River.