Election_2014_QAdi somma 102814Republican council candidate Sean Di Somma. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

In Tuesday’s election for Red Bank council, incumbents Juanita Lewis and Ed Zipprich, both Democrats, face Republicans Sean Di Somma and Linda Schwabenbauer. Here are Di Somma’s answers to questions sent to all four candidates by redbankgreen.

Name: Sean Patrick Di Somma

Age: 32

Where did you grow up? Bergen County, NJ

How long have you been a resident of Red Bank? Almost 3 years

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Election_2014_QA juanita lewis 101308Democrat Juanita Lewis has been on the council since 2009. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

In Tuesday’s election for Red Bank council, incumbents Juanita Lewis and Ed Zipprich, both Democrats, face Republicans Sean Di Somma and Linda Schwabenbauer. Here are Lewis’s answers to questions sent to all four candidates by redbankgreen.

Name: Juanita Lewis

Age: 48

Where did you grow up? I was born and raised in Red Bank.

How long have you been a resident of Red Bank? All of my life, except when I went to college, graduate school and when I worked overseas for one year.

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Election_2014_QApasquale menna 102814 2Pasquale Menna, a Democrat, was elected mayor in 2006 after 18 years on the borough council. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

In Tuesday’s election, Red Bank Mayor Pasquale Menna is running unopposed for a third four-year-term.Here are his answers to questions sent to all borough candidates by redbankgreen.

Name: Pasquale Menna

Age: 60

Where did you grow up? Italy, Montreal, Canada and Red Bank.

How long have you been a resident of Red Bank? Since 1964.

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Election_2014_QAschwabenbauer 102814Republican council candidate Linda Schwabenbauer. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

In Tuesday’s election for Red Bank council, incumbents Juanita Lewis and Ed Zipprich, both Democrats, face Republicans Sean Di Somma and Linda Schwabenbauer. Here are Schwabenbauer’s answers to questions sent to all four candidates by redbankgreen.

Name: Linda Schwabenbauer

Age: 49

Where did you grow up? Downingtown, PA

How long have you been a resident of Red Bank? Since May of 2005 – just shy of 10 years

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Election_2014_QA zipprich 011111Democrat Ed Zipprich has been on the council since 2009. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

In Tuesday’s election for Red Bank council, incumbents Juanita Lewis and Ed Zipprich, both Democrats, face Republicans Sean Di Somma and Linda Schwabenbauer. Here are Zipprich’s answers to questions sent to all four candidates by redbankgreen.

Name: Edward Zipprich

Age: 54

Where did you grow up? In a small town similar to Red Bank in Staten Island, NY

How long have you been a resident of Red Bank? 17.5 years

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Maureen MauroFamed “Medium Next Door” Maureen Hancock and Chef Mauro of Carlo’s Bakery are among the special guests, as the NJ Women’s Expo commandeers Brookdale’s Collins Arena for two days of “especially for women” seminars and demos.

“Gather your gal pals and treat yourselves,” it says here, “to the best local shopping, fashion, entertainment, food, travel, cosmetics and so much more.”

When the New Jersey Women’s Expo comes to the campus of Brookdale Community College for a fourth annual edition this weekend, it will commandeer the event floor and walkways of the Robert J. Collins Arena for two late morning/ afternoon sessions of product and service displays, health and beauty seminars, guest speakers and fashion shows (featuring the students of Red Bank’s Barbizon School of Modeling). It will feature a “Wellness Begins in Bed” panel presented by medical professionals from primary sponsor Meridian Health. And, it will entice attendees to venture into the wooded wilds of Lincroft by giving us something we can’t get at home: real live TV personalities.

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IMG_0044The shrimp tempura roll was a standout, but the new-to-us peanut avocado roll (right) was missing a note at the sushi counter. Or is it a bar? (Photos by Jim Willis. Click to enlarge)


IMG_0039PieHole and frequent lunch companion Brian McCourt rolled down River Road into Fair Haven to give Sansu Japanese Steakhouse a try for lunch. At 12:45, there was plenty of parking in the adjacent lot.

Last week, we singled out Edie’s Luncheonette in Little Silver because it had a lunch counter, one of the few in the area. McCourt took umbrage at my reference to the sushi bar as a counter and insisted it’s a bar, not a counter. In any case, that’s where we sat and ordered up some green teas while perusing the menu.

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AUTHORITIES_RB2-2014The crime and arrest reports below were provided by the Red Bank Police Department for the period of October 23 to October 30, 2014. This information is unedited.


Burglary occurring on 10-24-14 at Wallace St. residence. Victim reported that unknown person(s) removed mail slot frame from middle of door, which allowed perpetrator to unlock door and gain entry. Stolen from residence was cash, lap top computer and a men’s watch. Ptl. Patrick Kennedy.

Theft occurring on 10-26-14 at Bergen Place. Victim reported that unknown person(s) stole two mountain bikes from porch of residence. Ptl. Shane Dengel.

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ls 103114A mysterious storm rolled through Little Silver Thursday night, dropping significant amounts of toilet paper on trees and homes in and around Rumson Place. Weather forecasters said the storm foretold of partly sunny skies and temperatures peaking in the mid-50s, as ghosts and goblins scurry door-to-door in a campaign to extort treats from residents. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)



Deep Cut PhotoPress release from Monmouth County Parks System

Interested in nature photography? The Monmouth County Parks System is looking for entries for its upcoming photography exhibit,  The Residents of Deep Cut Gardens  and from now through November 21, professional and amateur photographers 18 years and older are invited to submit images for consideration into the show.

The exhibit will be open 10 am to 4 pm daily, January 4 through 31 at the Deep Cut Gardens Horticultural Center on Red Hill Road in Middletown. An opening reception is planned from 1 to 3 pm on Saturday, January 3. During this free event, the public is invited to view the exhibit, meet the photographers, and enjoy light refreshments.

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102914 soupmeisterGary Sable wraps up a lunch-to-go order for one of the many customers who wait patiently in line. Below, the 32-ounce Portuguese sausage and kale soup. (Photo by Susan Ericson. Click to enlarge)


102914 soupmeister2Twenty years ago, Red Bank was a veritable desert for takeout food. For this PieHole correspondent, then plying a different trade, there were maybe two or three delis in town to choose from for lunch.

Enter Gary Sable with his unique idea for a quick lunch: of hot dogs to go. Many of us were delighted to have a new option.

That Hot Dog Place, located off Monmouth Street in a little alley next to the Dublin House, was a convenient two-minute walk away, and appreciated, especially when the weather got colder. The only problem with that we soon tired of hot dogs.

One chilly autumn day, we sniffled our way over to Sable’s nook and told him how much we would prefer a hot cup of soup. It took him all of one day to add chicken noodle and tomato basil bisque to his menu. We have been grateful customers ever since.

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Greg_512Marimba master Greg Giannascoli returns to the Basie stage this Saturday, as the Monmouth Symphony Orchestra mark its 66th anniversary with Fanfare and the Fourth.

Long before Red Bank was looked upon as a center for culture and the arts; decades prior to the rebranding of the venerable Carlton vaudeville house as the Count Basie Theatre, there was the Monmouth Symphony Orchestra — and the organization now under the baton of conductor Roy D. Gussman is still going strong in the new century, celebrating 66 years as a community treasure and getting ready to embark upon an all new season with a Saturday night concert on November 1.

For this momentous occasion, Gussman and the MSO put out the call to an engaging instrumentalist whose 2010 solo spot with the orchestra has become the stuff of legend — classical marimbist Greg Giannascoli. A member of the Juilliard School faculty and a virtuoso of the melodically malleted, harmonically hammered percussion instrument (still something of a novelty on symphony stages), Giannascoli returns to Red Bank for a program that promises to bring the Tchaikovsky, the Copland…and the Ewazen?

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Recent arrest reports, unedited, as provided by the Middletown Township Police Department.

AUTHORITIES_MTOWN2-2014Joseph Brucato, age 39, from Wilson Avenue in Middletown, NJ, arrested on September 24, 2014 by Patrolman Thomas Foster for Driving While Intoxicated. He was released pending a court date.

Richard Lecomte, age 27, from Kimberly Court in Red Bank, NJ, arrested on September 24, 2014 by Corporal Lawrence Seymour for Harassment. He was released after posting $1,000.00 bail set by Judge Richard Thompson.

James Postiglione, age 49, from Chestnut Street in Port Monmouth, NJ, arrested on September 24, 2014 by Patrolman Jason Caruso for Theft. He was held on $5,000.00 bail set by Judge Richard Thompson.

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Bouncing like a pinball off would-be tacklers, Red Bank Catholic running back Nick Cella motored to a 37-yard touchdown in  RBC’s 35-7 win over Manalapan last week. The effort also earned Cella the Shore Sports Zone play-of-the-week game ball, as decided by voters. Coach Jim Portela presented the ball to Cella after the team finished practice Wednesday. Up next for the Caseys: an away game against Ocean Township Friday night.


Hair4HeroesPress release from Hometown Heroes

All around us there are people in need: hungry kids, homeless veterans, teen moms, ailing seniors, and so many more.  In every community, our friends and neighbors are experiencing enormous challenges in their lives and can use a helping hand. Eager to help make a difference, “Hair for Heroes” is a nationwide fundraising event created by Christine Zilinski of Salon Concrete in partnership with Hometown Heroes, an organization that provides financial support, professional assistance and advocacy to any individual or family who suddenly finds themselves in a crisis.

On Monday, November 10, 2014 Salon Concrete will host a “Hair for Heroes” day in the salon, offering haircuts for a $50 donation to support Hometown Heroes and those who are struggling in the community. Salon guests will receive top quality haircuts, and will feel good about supporting a cause that directly impacts their own local community.

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Election_2014_wDebatesrb candidates 102814 3Republicans Linda Schwabenbauer and Sean Di Somma had a full-house audience at River Street Commons to themselves Tuesday night. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)


The two Red Bank council candidates challenged the Democratic incumbents to a debate Wednesday, one day after a meet-the-candidates event at which the Dems were no-shows.

GOP contender Sean Di Somma called the absence of Juanita Lewis and Ed Zipprich “sad and shameful,” adding that they’d “pulled a fast one on Red Bank residents” by canceling at the last minute.

Zipprich told redbankgreen earlier on Tuesday that he was attending to a family medical issue, and Lewis told the Westside Community Group that she couldn’t make their Tuesday event because she was “pulled away on business,” said event moderator Amy Goldsmith.

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Woods HollowThe rollercoaster wooded trails and fields of the county’s Tatum Park are once more the setting for the annual Woods Hollow Bike Races, this Saturday morning.

It’s pretty much the last of the yearly outdoor recreational events before the turnback of the clocks — and while there’ll still be plenty of open-air public activities to come on the greater Green, chances are they’ll be enticing attendees with cups of hot chocolate from here on in.

Right now, with the local foliage season at its most colorful, there are few better leaf-spotting locales than the Monmouth County Parks Systems’ Tatum Park in Middletown — and no better excuse to get acquainted with Tatum than the Woods Hollow Classic Mountain Bike Race, the 19th annual edition of which takes to the rollercoaster wooded trails and open fields of the park this Saturday, November the First.

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An NJNG crew packs it in after being ordered by police to stop work on a nearly completed gas regulator valve replacement on Monmouth Street in October, 2012. Below, a Monmouth Street valve that was struck by a falling tree during Hurricane Sandy. (Click to enlarge)


rb gas valve 103112Remember the flap over the regulator valves that New Jersey Natural Gas Company moved above-ground along storefronts over the objections of Red Bank officials and merchants two years ago?

They’re unsafe, borough officials said. They’re ugly, too, said business owners and officials at RiverCenter, the downtown promotion agency. Mayor Pasquale Menna called them “monstrous carbuncles” forced upon the town by an “arrogant” utility company.

They’re also illegal, according to a state appellate panel ruing issued Tuesday.

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RBR heroinSpeaking about the heroin epidemic at a Red Bank Regional High School assembly were (left to right) Lt. Jason C. Clark, Capt. Barry DuBrosky, Lt. Wesley Mayo, Jr., and Abby Boxman.

Press release from Red Bank Regional High School

Law enforcement professionals from the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office have been traversing Monmouth County for the past two years, sounding the alarm on the problem of heroin addiction affecting many young people.

Last year, their presentations were mainly geared to parental awareness — including two well-attended forums at Red Bank Regional High School (RBR) and Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School.

In October, they returned to RB — this time to have that very difficult conversation with students.

The detectives shared some startling statistics:  4.2 million Americans aged 12 or older have reported to used heroin at least once in their lives. Of that number, one in four will become addicted; shockingly only 20 percent of those who become addicted ever recover enough to assume productive lives. This problem has become rampant in the suburbs of New Jersey, with a 45 percent increase in heroin-related deaths in the past two years; 24 percent in the last year alone. One Powerpoint slide showed the unnatural causes of death for 2013 in the county: homicides 4; highway fatalities 29; drug overdoses 37 (of which 31 were due to heroin.)

“Is it here in Little Silver?” One student asked, to which Detective Barry DuBrosky responded, “The answer is yes.”

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Press release from Fair Haven School District

“When you think you’re done, you’ve just begun,” is the motto of the Student Writer’s Workshops at Viola L. Sickles School in Fair Haven.

And while you may have guessed otherwise, Colleen Doogan told a roomful of surprised parents that her blossoming writers actually get excited when they hear this phrase.

“They view it as an invitation to carry on with a process they thoroughly enjoy,” said Doogan, who is in her first year as the K-3 Literacy Coach and provides support for teachers to enhance their reading and writing instruction.

This gratifying fact was revealed during the Parent Literacy Lab at Sickles School on the evening of October 9. Doogan hosted the event for parents of students in Kindergarten through fifth grade, to demonstrate how Fair Haven Schools are growing good writers through modeling, engagement, and reflection.

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Election_2014_wDebatesrb candidates 102814 1The River Street Commons had a full house for the event, hosted by the Westside Community Group. Alecia Wilkerson, below, asked a question from the audience. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)


rb candidates 102814 2The two Republican candidates for Red Bank council in next week’s election had an open field as neither of their opponents showed up for a debate Tuesday night.

Incumbent Democrat Ed Zipprich was out of town on a family medical issue, and fellow incumbent Democrat Juanita Lewis was “called away on business,”  Westside Community Group president and event moderator Amy Goldsmith said the candidates told her.

That gave Republican challengers Sean Di Somma and Linda Schwabenbauer control of the floor at the 18th annual candidates’ night, held as always at the River Street Commons. Di Somma made frequent reference to the absences, and at one point gave away their chairs to audience members who had packed the former school gym.

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211 broad 102114 2The underside of the church roof, above, will remain exposed to the new second floor and mezzanine. Below, the church’s steeple also will be retained.  (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)


211 broad 102114 1The pews and organ are gone. But touches of what made the former First Church of Christ, Scientist in Red Bank a place of worship remain as the 62-year-old structure is transformed into an office building with the decidedly secular name of “211 Broad Street.”

The giant clerestory windows have been preserved, though their arched tops are now at eye-level on a second floor erected in what had been open sanctuary space. The original wood dentil molding has been retained. And there’s a small round window, hidden for years behind the organ, that will deliver light and views previously available only to the occasional maintenance worker.

Most prominently, there’s the steeple. For passersby, its storybook patina-green spire will continue to soar toward the heavens – though by this time next year, some office occupant who gazes upward will be able to get an eyeful of its guts.

“It’s like architectural sculpture,” developer Bob Silver, of Bravitas Group, said of the intricate lacing of timbers. “We never even considered taking it down.”

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Crime and arrest reports, unedited, as provided by the Shrewsbury Police Department for the period of October 18 to October 23, 2014.


Report of Theft by Deception in the area of United Supply, Newman Springs Road on 10/18/14. Unknown subject(s) removed merchandise. Damages totaling $898.18. Ptl. Tracy Polk investigating.

Report of Theft and Forgery in the area of Bank of America, Shrewsbury Avenue on 10/18/14. Victim reports unknown subject(s) forged documents to withdraw funds. Damages totaling $4,924.87. Ptl. Angel Marrero investigating.

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Dias 101The Victoria G. Mastrobuono Library at Two River Theater is the setting as Two River artistic director John Dias, right, delivers a talk on the American art form of Musical Theater, in advance of November’s production of CAMELOT.

With a formidable resume of credits that include Joseph Papp’s iconic Public Theater and his own celebrated productions, John Dias brought a real connection to the upper echelons of the American stage, upon becoming artistic director of Two River Theater Company a few seasons back. And as evidence of the respect in which Dias is held by his peers, his productions have brought TRTC’s Bridge Avenue auditorium audience members that have included Joel Grey, Bernadette Peters, Philip Seymour Hoffman, David Hyde Pierce, Alan Rickman and TCM’s Robert Osborne, to name but a few.

The Two River A.D. has also brought a set of welcome new traditions to Red Bank, from his opening-night toasts to his illuminating and invaluable program notes for each new production. This Thursday evening, October 30, he’ll be hosting the latest in a recently minted series of engaging discussions — this one centered around the theme Musical Theater 101.

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