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RUMSON MANSION AUCTION A BUST

A jazz duet played on, even after bidders left the auction, which lasted just four minutes. Below, an aerial view from the auction website. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

They can’t give this baby away, it seems.

A mansion on the Navesink River in Rumson that was once listed for sale at $10.5 million drew a high bid of just $2.6 million at auction Wednesday afternoon, prompting the seller to reject the offer and leaving real estate professionals dumbfounded.

“I don’t know if you could buy the land for that,” the auctioneer told the small cluster of potential bidders who’d gathered under a white tent for the event.

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FAIR HAVEN: TEENS LAUNCH MAG, WITH VERVE

A Verve magazine production session in Fair Haven last week. Below, instruction Jennifer Chauhan, left, with Samantha Quinn. (Photos by Colby Wilson. Click to enlarge)

By COLBY WILSON

What is imagination? What is artistic expression?

It’s “Verve,” according to an ambitious group of local young creators led by Little Silver-based writer, editor and educator Jennifer Chauhan.

This summer, Chauhan, the founder of the JC Writing Studio in Fair Haven, is helping five teens from local schools tap into their creative energy and craft their  own online publication. During a four-day open writing studio last week, Chauhan helped the founding editors transform Verve from an idea into a reality.

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SHREWSBURY: REPORT OF STOLEN PAYCHECK

Activity reports, unedited, as provided by the Shrewsbury Police Department for the period of July 20 to July 26, 2013.

call-in-the-authoritiesReport of Theft in the area of Broad Street on 7/22/13. Merchandise taken by unknown subject(s). Damages totaling $279.99. Accused Wayne Stevens, male age 31 of Red Bank was later arrested and charged by Ptl. Jessica Boyd.

Report of Theft in the area of Broad Street on 7/24/13. Victim reports merchandise taken by unknown subject(s). Damages totaling $5,000.00. Ptl. Frank Neary investigating.

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RED BANK: MEET, GREET, GRAB A TREAT

Dozens of dogs and their human pals turned out on a pleasant summer evening Tuesday for the first edition of Red Bank’s Dog Days, and redbankgreen was there to catch the wags, smiles and occasional slobbers. We’ve got lots more photos after the “read more.”

The canine meet-and-greet, held on a closed-to-traffic stretch of Monmouth Street, is scheduled to repeat on the last Tuesday night of August, September and October. (Click to enlarge)

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RED BANK: FROM ROOF TO ROOF-OF-MOUTH

Jamian LaViola grabs some herbs from the rooftop garden over the restaurant’s kitchen. (Photo by Jim Willis. Click to enlarge)

By JIM WILLIS

At Jamian LaViola’s eponymous Red Bank bar and restaurant, Jamian’s, patrons are apt to arrive on beach cruisers or skateboards, and if they come by car, there’s a good chance there’ll be a surfboard or two strapped to the roof.

That neighborhood vibe now extends to Jamian’s menu, with some produce coming from as nearby as a small garden atop the Monmouth Street restaurant and LaViola’s backyard garden in Navesink.

This summer LaViola is harvesting greens like romaine and frisee from the home garden and using them in the kitchen.

“We just brought in some lobster, and we’re making a fresh lobster salad tonight,” he told redbankgreen last Friday. “Will I use some of my fresh greens for that? Yeah, absolutely because it will make it just that much better.”

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RED BANK HITS THE PAWS BUTTON TONIGHT

Red Bank rolls out the red carpet for man’s best friend Tuesday night with the first in the series of three planned ‘Dog Days‘ festivals. Monmouth Street between Broad Street and Drummond Place will be closed to traffic from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. as dozens of animal-products vendors set up for an expected turnout of several hundred canines and their homo sapiens. All dogs must be on non-extendable leashes, the borough says. The event, whelped by Mayor Pasquale Menna, is scheduled to recur on the last Tuesday nights of August, September and October. (Click to enlarge)

RED BANK: BOTTLING THE MAGIC OF HISTORY

A poster from Glenn Vogel’s collection of Red Bank memorabilia on display at the borough library. Below, Vogel inspects a bottle brought to the library  by Ron Costa, who found it in the Navesink River.  (Photos by Sarah Klepner. Click to enlarge)

By SARAH KLEPNER

One man’s obsession is Red Bank’s history – and it’s on display at the Eisner Memorial Library through the end of the year.

Glenn Vogel discovered that history is literally underfoot in 1980 when a fellow road builder at the Fort Monmouth section of Naval Station Earle suggested they check out the woods on a lunch break.

“He was getting stuff out of the ground, and he handed me a Red Bank bottle,” said Vogel, who was living in the borough at the time. “That intrigued me very much.”

It was the beginning of Vogel’s odyssey.

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RED BANK: SPEAKING OF OLD BOTTLES…

Red Bank resident (and redbankgreen webmaster) Kenny Katzgrau went exploring for history under his house and, with the help of his wife, Katie, fished an old bottle from a hard-to access void in the foundation Sunday.

The house, on South Street, was the longtime home of Henry Gunther Degenring, who owned the HG Degenring soft-drink and beer bottling company at the rear of 16 West Front Street for more than 50 years and served as a borough councilman before his death, in 1958. The ad at right ran in the old Red Bank Register; Degenring’s father owned the Germania Hotel, also at 16 West Front. (Click to enlarge)

RED BANK: A TOUCHY-FEELY SIDEWALK SALE

Downtown Red Bank is always a great people-watching scene, and that was the case when bargainhunters flooded the sidewalks for the 59th annual Red Bank Sidewalk Sale over the past weekend. redbankgreen took these photos on Saturday. (Click to enlarge)
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RED BANK: CRIME REPORTS AND ARRESTS

call-in-the-authoritiesThe crime reports below were provided by the Red Bank Police Department for the period of July 18 to July 25, 2013. This information is unedited.

Theft reported on 7-19-13 but occurred between 7-17-13 and 7-18-13 at Wallace Street residence. Victim reported that unknown person entered his apartment and stole cash. Ptl. Ashon Lovick.

Attempted Break-in occurring between 7-18-13 and 7-19-13 at Marine Park. Unknown subject(s) tried to gain entry on to boat, which was docked, opened cover and caused damaged to cabin door by prying same. Nothing stolen. Ptl. Garrett Flaco and Sgt. Michael Frazee.

Theft occurring on 7-18-13 at River St. residence. Victim reported that unknown person stole a Microsoft Tablet. Sgt. Frank Bitsko.

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RED BANK: TENDING THE TRAFFIC ISLAND

Keeping it low-key, a civic-minded member of the Red Bank zoning board who asked us not to identify her by name tends the traffic-island flowerbed at Monmouth Street and Bridge Avenue Sunday, planting flowers raised from seed at her home. (Photo by Sarah Klepner. Click to enlarge)

RED BANK, SHREWSWBURY MAKE DRUG BUSTS

Red Bank and Shrewsbury police reported separate drug arrests Friday.

From Shrewsbury PD, regarding an incident that occurred at noontime Friday, according to Chief Lou Ferraro:

A Long Branch man has been arrested and charged with Possession of Cocaine, Possession of Cocaine with intent to distribute, Possession of Marijuana, Possession of Marijuana with intent to distribute, Possession of Synthetic Marijuana, and Possession of drug paraphernalia.

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SEA BRIGHT: WELL, HOW ABOUT A PHARMACY?

Residents at Wednesday night’s brainstorming session in Sea Bright. (Photo by Colby Wilson. Click to enlarge)

By COLBY WILSON

For the second time this week, business owners, residents and concerned others gathered at Sea Bright borough hall Wednesday night to brainstorm on the town’s future.

At an open-invite think tank of sorts, the second meeting held by the Sea Bright 2020 steering committee focused on economic development and community facilities. On Monday, the focus was on housing and the waterfront.

“Let’s talk about strengths,” said Frank Lawrence, the committee’s chairman. “Not just what’s bad but what’s good,”

The conversation, however, quickly turned to what the town didn’t have and the challenges it still faced in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy – a stark reminder that Sea Bright is still fighting back from the storm.

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WEEKENDER: BARGAINS, BANDS AND THE BARD

Bargains line the brick walkways of downtown Red Bank for the annual Sidewalk Sale this weekend. Below, fans of the Haven find shelter at the Walt Street Pub Friday night. (Click to enlarge)

Friday, July 26:

RED BANK: Shop, rock & stroll through Red Bank for the 59th annual sidewalk sale. The weekend-long bargainfest lets shoppers snag clearance and sale items at shops throughout the downtwon. The sale runs 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

SHREWSBURY: Learn the basics of email at the Eastern Branch of the Monmouth County Library. The session is free and begins at 7 p.m. 1001 Route 35 North.

RED BANK: Chazz Palminteri stops by Count Basie Theatre for a special one-man performance of his play-turned-big-screen-hit “A Bronx Tale,” about a murder Palminteri witnessed when he was young. Tickets are $55, $65, $85, and $150. VIP tickets include a meet and greet with the star. “A Bronx Tale” begins at 8 p.m. 99 Monmouth Street.

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SHREWSBURY AVENUE SPICES UP BANCO ROJO

Nopales, left, and sabila, above, are available at Rincon Latino Supermarket. (Photos by Grace Goldoni. Click to enlarge)

By GRACE GOLDONI

Rich South American hot chocolate in blocks. Subtropical coconuts. Exotic, prickly and tangy vegetables.

We’re not in your typical white-bread American supermarket. Here on Shrewsbury Avenue, the main thoroughfare on Red Bank’s West Side, the striking flavors of fresh and authentic Latin food create a south-of-the-border atmosphere.

In recent decades, this commercial stretch has adopted a strong Latino accent, just like its surrounding neighborhoods. If you’ve never stepped outside your car and visited this street, home to about half a dozen bodegas and small grocers, well, grab a shopping cart…

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RED BANK: MONOC SETS RESPONSE TRIAL

A MONOC rig will be based in Red Bank, and respond only to in-town emergencies, during a two-month trial. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

It’s MONOC to the rescue in Red Bank, at least in the near term.

Hoping to address a chronic shortage of daytime emergency volunteers, the borough’s volunteer First Aid and Rescue Squad has negotiated a two-month trial under which the nonprofit EMT operation MONOC will keep an ambulance at the Spring Street station to respond to daytime calls, officials announced Wednesday night.

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RED BANK: TWO’LL GET YOU THREE

A not-uncommon scene in Red Bank’s White Street lot, this photo was taken shortly before 1 p.m. Wednesday, when parking spaces were hard to hard to find.

Space hogs? Or does the lot need restriping to accommodate these elephants? (Click to enlarge)

RED BANK: KNIFEPOINT ROBBERY REPORTED

A Red Bank man was arrested Tuesday night on charges that he robbed a pedestrian at knifepoint, police reported.

The 32-year-old male victim, also a borough resident, reported that he was approached by a young Latino male who first demanded money, and when the victim refused, brandished a knife and repeated the demand.

The encounter occurred at about 9:23 p.m. on Monmouth Street near Bridge Avenue, police said.

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SEA BRIGHT: RISK-TAKERS FLOODING TOWN

Antonio Murray, above, opened Beach Burgers and Grille on Tuesday. Below, Billy Geltzeiler with server Greer McCarthy at Billy G’s Beach Bistro. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Store by store, restaurant by restaurant, the old-timers are coming back to Sea Bright, a town where not one was spared the trauma of Hurricane Sandy.

From Angler’s Marina to Yumi, from Woody’s Ocean Grille to Northshore Menswear to Bain’s Hardware,  merchants have restarted their businesses as quickly as their bank balances would allow. Others are in the process of renovating. Expect Gracie & the Dudes to return shortly. Ditto for the the 7-Eleven.

But within this returning tide is a second wave: newcomers to Ocean Avenue business district. Risk-takers willing to stake their livelihoods, and their life savings, on the chance that the Shrewsbury River and the Atlantic Ocean won’t again meet in the places their renting. Not soon, at least.

Last week, redbankgreen introduced you to Alice Gaffney, a former school cafeteria cook who opened Alice’s Kitchen in the space long occupied by Steve’s Breakfast & Lunch. Here’s a look at three more newcomers – owners of a full-service restaurant, a burger place and a surf shop.

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SEA BRIGHT: FORMER ALLIED BUILDING RAZED

The long-vacant Allied Building Products space on East Ocean Avenue in Sea Bright, damaged by Hurricane Sandy, was torn down Tuesday. Borough officials said no plans have been filed for rebuilding on the site, which is next door to borough hall. (Click to enlarge)

FAIR HAVEN: ROBBER GETS NINE YEARS

A 69-year-old Staten Island man who admitted robbing a Fair Haven antiques store at gunpoint last summer has been sentenced to 114 months in prison, federal law enforcement officials said Tuesday.

Robert Fiolka, who wore a “flesh-colored” mask and toted a gun in the June, 2012 robbery of Blue Stove Antiques on River Road, made off with $200,000 in jewelry, according to a press release from U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman.

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RUMSON: CHURCH HALVED FOR A TRIPLING

Contractors have sheared away more than half of the original 1886 Holy Cross Church in Rumson as part of a massive remodeling that will boost the number of seats from the present 220 to 648. Architectural renderings of the planned addition may be viewed here. (Click to enlarge)

RED BANK: COURT GETS ITS GAME BACK

Missing for years, the backboards and hoops at Montgomery Terrace have returned. (Photos by Sarah Klepner. Click to enlarge)

By SARAH KLEPNER

Basketball hoops said to have been removed after a double shooting in 2007 are back at Red Bank’s Montgomery Terrace apartment complex on the West Side.

The return of the rims was praised by residents, who said the court will give idle youngsters an outlet. Last week, some kids talked about what the change means to them.

“I’m happy they’re back so kids can play here instead of in the parking lot, where people’s cars are,” a boy named Jayron told redbankgreen.

“And it’s good we have a place where we can chill, and hang out, and not argue,” added a girl, Nydasia.

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