FAIR HAVEN YOUNG ARTISTS A HIT

FH artVisitors to the Fair Haven School District Art Show admire self-portraits created by eighth graders at Knollwood School.

Press release from Fair Haven School District

“Make Your Mark” was the theme of the Fair Haven School District Art Show, with more than 1,000 pieces of student-created original art displayed at Knollwood School on the evening of April 14.

This year’s edition of the annual show represented the District’s implementation of new standards in the visual arts.  The new standards focus on essential questions to help develop both critical thinking and problem-solving skills, with students are encouraged to create, present, respond, and connect their artwork to ideas that have personal meaning.

Kindergarten through third grade students at Viola L. Sickles School, and fourth through eighth grade students at Knollwood School each contributed at least one project for display.

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RED BANK: DUCKLINGS RESCUED FROM SEWER

rb ducks 051415 5While passersby tried to corral the mother duck and eight of her ducklings, above, Lauren Dezzi, below, got ready to retrieve four other babies from the sewer. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

rb ducks 051415 6Four ducklings that apparently fell into a storm drain in downtown Red Bank were reunited with their mother and eight siblings by a fast-acting office worker Thursday afternoon.

Using a fish net from an aquarium in her office at OceanFirst Bank, Lauren Dezzi of Manchester got down on all fours atop a Broad Street sewer and gently plucked the downy babies to safety shortly after noon.

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RED BANK: A BANQUET FOR THE EYES

oyster pt artSTILL LIFE WITH BIRDS AND DESSERTS and other paintings by Lisa Ficarelli-Halpern are on display throughout the Oyster Point Hotel, beginning with a reception on Friday evening, May 15. 

For the latest in a series of art installations at The Oyster Point — exhibits that have turned the hotel’s lobby and other common areas into a strolling gallery space — Swiss-born, internationally exhibited multimedia artist Gerda Liebmann has curated a banquet of sorts.

Officially opening with a public-welcome reception this Friday, May 15 (and remaining on display at the Bodman Place landmark through June 29), The Painted Banquet is a solo-show look at the work and worldview of area-based painter (and Brookdale Community College faculty member) Lisa Ficarelli-Halpern.

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RED BANK: PHOENIX LAUNCHES NEW HQ

PhoenixPhoenix Productions exec director Tom Martini (fifth from left) brandishes the scissors as the ribbon is cut for the theater company’s new home on Chestnut Street. Assisting during the May 8 gala party were (left to right) company president Lindsay Wood, plus board members Holly Hankins, Michael Dalberg, Bob Brown, Andrea Zawadzki, and James Marhold. (photos by Rich Kowalski)

It was a gala fundraiser and celebration unlike just about any other — one in which the “springtime casual” dress code abandoned the stodgy formalwear in favor of (in at least one case) full pirate regalia — an affair in which the microphone was commandeered for soaring Broadway-quality voices, rather than snoring speeches.

But then, this was no ordinary occasion for Phoenix Productions, the borough-based community stage company that recently fulfilled an ambitious relocation to (and renovation of) a spacious new rehearsal studio, craft shop, storage space and executive office complex at 59 Chestnut Street. More than a hundred guest well-wishers, community sponsors and alumni from past shows joined the Phoenix board of directors on the night of May 8, to cut the ribbon on the troupe’s new headquarters, to raise funds for ongoing projects, and to celebrate an entertainment legacy of more than a quarter century in song and in style.

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RED BANK: NO TAX INCREASE

dupontCouncilman Mike DuPont credited borough employees for financial sacrifices that helped keep taxes level with last year. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

taxesRed Bank property owners won’t be getting a 3.1-percent local property tax for 2015, as previously expected.

In fact, there will be no increase at all under a municipal budget adopted by the borough council Wednesday night.

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RED BANK: LACK OF OXYGEN KILLING FISH

navesink fish 051415 1Dead fish at the Navesink River Rowing facility in Red Bank Thursday morning. (Photo by Trish Russoniello. Click to enlarge)

HOT-TOPIC_03A fish kill in the Navesink River in recent weeks is a result of natural phenomenon, according to the Asbury Park Press.

The newspaper reports that the state Department of Environmental Protection attributes the die-off of hundreds of bunker to a lack of oxygen in shallow water as they’re driven upriver by bluefish.

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MIDDLETOWN: RECENT ARRESTS

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

AUTHORITIES_MTOWN2Sean Figaro, age 20, from Garfield Avenue in Belford, NJ, arrested on April 25, 2015 by Patrolman Frank Mazza on a Contempt of Court warrant issued by the Tinton Falls Municipal Court. He was released after posting $100.00 bail.

Harold Johnson, age 33, from Sherman Avenue in Belford, NJ, arrested on April 24, 2015 by Patrolman Nicholas Fenezia on Contempt of Court warrants issued by the Hazlet, Middletown, Red Bank and Holmdel Municipal Courts. He was released after posting $5,269.00 bail.

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SEA BRIGHT: ALL FIRED UP FOR THE FAIR

sb-fire-fair-1-2009-500x375The Sea Bright Firemen’s Fair returns Thursday for a four-night stand of rides, music, games and great views.

On paper, the four-evening Sea Bright Firemen’s Fair would seem to have pretty much exactly what you’d expect of any small-town fundraiser carnival: the trucked-in rides, the games of chance, the food vendors, the local music.

But to residents of the greater Red Bank Green, the annual fair always meant something more, signaling as it does the start of the summer fun season, every bit as much as the Fair Haven Firemen’s Fair bookends the other side with one last bittersweet blast against the encroaching back-to-school blues.

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SUMMER OF STEM AT RED BANK CHARTER

IMG_3263Press release from Red Bank Charter School

Red Bank Charter School has announced the availability of a new comprehensive STEM-based curriculum for their Summer Institute over five weeks, from July 6 to August 7. Summer Institute registration is now being accepted for current RBCS students, as well as non-students from Red Bank and surrounding communities.

RBCS Summer Institute fuses concepts of STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) into real-world summer-learning activities. Students will explore alternative energy sources in a “Ride Like The Wind” engineering workshop by building a prototype wind turbine. They’ll don life-jackets as “River Rangers” in a week-long tour of our local waterways in student-built canoes. They’ll also develop teamwork skills in a canoeing competition with peers, culminating in a technology-driven storytelling activity using graphics, music and video.

Younger students will seine the Navesink “Down By the Sea” as budding Marine biologists. They’ll also experience “Life on a Farm” and learn about the importance of sustainable organic farming, and how to harvest nutritional snacks.

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RFH FAILS IN BID FOR FIFTH STRAIGHT TITLE

Defending Shore Conference lacrosse champs Rumson-Fair Haven came up emptyhanded in their quest for a fifth consecutive lacrosse title as they fell to Southern Regional, 16-6, in the title game at Monmouth University Tuesday. It was the first championship for Southern. Shore Sports Zone has the action on video.

RED BANK: TWO RIVER INTROS NEW SEASON

DirdenStoneRechnitzReturning Broadway veterans Brandon J. Dirden and Jessica Stone — plus rookie playwright Robert Rechnitz, pictured with wife and fellow Two River Theater Company founder Joan — are among the creative forces powering a just-announced 2015-2016 season of shows on Two River stages.

It’s a highly anticipated rite of spring in Red Bank — one that John Dias jokingly referred to as “this totally kooky annual event” — but when the artistic director of Two River Theater Company played host for the 2015-2016 Season Announcement on Monday night, he was entirely serious in first thanking the “loyal, passionate” audience members who “want to be the first to hear what we’re doing each year.”

Kicking off in mid-September, and comprising eight productions on two stages of TRTC’s branded Bridge Avenue arts center, it’s a schedule that boasts fresh takes on familiar classics, and first looks at a couple of world premiere works. There’s some engagingly quirky casting; the return of several fondly regarded members of the extended Two River family — and a debut original work by a forever-young upstart who holds a special resonance with the Red Bank audience.

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RED BANK: PARK IT HERE, JAZZ LOVERS

johnny jazz park 051115 1John Gatta wields giant scissors as he dedicates the new park named for his late brother, Ralph ‘Johnny Jazz’ Gatta Jr. (seen below), as Councilwoman Linda Schwabenbauer applauds. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

ralph johnny jazz 2006 1For 47 years, while cutting meat and selling boxes of rice and cereal, Red Bank butcher Ralph ‘Johnny Jazz’ Gatta Jr. preached the gospel of an American musical art form he deeply loved, and wanted his customers to hear as he heard it.

On Monday night, borough residents showed they had heard, and had been touched by both his love of jazz and his generosity as a grocer.

At a brief ceremony tinged with fondness, humor and a bit of live jazz, the site at the corner of Shrewsbury Avenue and Drs. James Parker Boulevard was named in honor of the late jazz-enthralled butcher.

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RED BANK: FOGGY DAWN

rb fog 051215Fog on our beautiful Navesink River, as seen from Maple Cove in Red Bank at 6 a.m. Tuesday. A cloudy morning was expected to yield to sunshine, with temperatures soaring to the high 80s, according to the National Weather Service. (Photo by Trish Russoniello. Click to enlarge)

RBR’S PRINCIPAL CLAY HONORED WITH AWARD

carcofficialLeft to right: Red Bank Regional Principal Risa Clay is pictured celebrating her being honored as a Partner in Education by the Community Affairs and Resource Center with her colleagues, RBR Interim Superintendent Tom Pagano, SOURCE Director Suzanne Keller, and SOURCE academic specialist Joseph Cerbone. 

Press release from Red Bank Regional High School

On the evening of April 24, Red Bank Regional High School principal Risa Clay was honored by the Community Affairs and Resource Center (CARC) with their Partner in Education Award, during the organization’s fifth annual Black & White Gala reception at the Sheraton Eatontown Hotel.

Mrs. Clay, who is bilingual in English and Spanish, was honored for her work with RBR’s Latino students who are served by the SOURCE, the school based youth service program which she established 15 years ago. She also created an award winning- model program for English Language Learning (ELL) instruction and success. The program was responsible for RBR’s continued very high attendance and graduation rates among its ELL students, many of whom were able to afford college through a scholarship program she established with a private benefactor, The Andrew Kroon Memorial Scholarship, and a program with Brookdale College.

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‘VOICES OF CHANGE’ TO RING OUT AT RBR

zookPress release from Red Bank Regional High School

On Thursday, May 21 at 7 pm, the voices of several generations will join together in song, as the Visual and Performing Arts Academy at Red Bank Regional High School (RBR) hosts the world premiere of Voices of Change, an oratorio composed and conducted by RBR music teacher Kristopher Zook. The event features the voices of numerous high school choirs and area festival choirs as well as the Count Basie Theatre Central Jersey Youth Chorale, with special solo performances by Metropolitan Opera singer Jeremy Galyon and Kean University voice professor Katherine Harris.

A multi-generational choral work with a chamber orchestra, Voices incorporates texts by poets, philosophers, political figures and authors including Confucius, Euripides, Benjamin Franklin, Henry David Thoreau, Chief Seathl, Winston Churchill, Martin Luther King, Gandhi, Mother Teresa, Nelson Mandela, the Dalai Lama and more.

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RFH: GIRLS CLINCH SCT LACROSSE TITLE

Number-one seed Rumson-Fair Haven’s girls dominated Shore Regional, 17-5, enroute to a third consecutive Shore Conference Tournament lacrosse championship at Monmouth University Monday.

Jillian Swikart scored seven goals and Brittany Bruno added six as the Lady Bulldogs broke a 4-4 tie to embark on a 13-1 run. Shore Sports Zone has the game highlights and post-game reaction.

FAIR HAVEN: POLICE REPORTS

Crime and arrest reports, unedited, as provided by the Fair Haven Police Department for the month of April, 2015.

AUTHORITIES_FH24/3- An Oxford Ave resident reported that an unknown subject(s) had attempted to defraud the victim through a PayPal account. Ptl. John Koetzner took the report.

4/9- Janienn Dastagirzada, 32, Red Bank, was placed under arrested after an active traffic warrant for her arrest was located during a call for service. Subject was released after posting full cash bail. Det. Stephen Schneider was the arresting Officer.

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LINCROFT: EMERGING, INTO A NEW DIMENSION

Hannah UenoThe spectacular 3-D lenticular images of Hannah Ueno are on display at the Monmouth Museum, with the artist and educator on hand to discuss her work this Wednesday evening.

The effect is that of a stereoscopic 3-D picture, without the use of 3-D glasses — so leave the multiplex specs in the car (and stand at an optimal viewing distance of 3 to 4 feet) when you visit the Monmouth Museum for the current exhibit in the building’s Nilson Gallery — a display of lenticular images by Hannah Ueno (lenticular, as along the lines of those “3-D” baseball cards they used to give away inside cereal boxes).

The latest in the New Jersey Emerging Artists Series — a slate that’s helped boost the Middletown-based museum (on the Lincroft campus of Brookdale Community College) into the realm of the area’’s more cutting-edge galleries and public facilities — the exhibit remains on display during regular operating days through May 24, with Ueno (an Associate Professor of Visual Communications at Stockton College) dropping by this Wednesday, May 13 for an Artist Talk on techniques and inspirations.

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RED BANK: PARK TO GET JOHNNY JAZZED UP

rb jazz 082214 2ralph johnny jazz 2006 1Anyone who ever had the pleasure of getting an earful of bebop – and a history lesson in jazz – while picking up a pound of ground chuck at the now-gone Johnny’s Jazz Market in Red Bank should consider stopping by the pocket park on Shrewsbury Avenue at Drs. James Parker Boulevard tonight at 6:30 p.m.

That’s when borough officials will officially rename the park for the late butcher and irrepressible jazz maven Ralph ‘Johnny Jazz‘ Gatta Jr., who ran the shop for almost 50 years – always with his beloved jazz playing in the background.

Gatta, a lifelong borough resident, died in 2011. The park is the site of a series of summer jazz concerts hosted by the borough.  (Photo above by Trish Russoniello; below, by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

 

 

 

RED BANK: ST. ANTHONY’S SALE RETURNS

st anthony rummage 043015Maritza Serrano, left, and Mary Ellen Harris (with dog, Claire) seen at the St. Anthony of Padua rummage sale in 2013. The event returns to the Bridge Avenue, Red Bank parish on Saturday, May 16, as a fundraiser for the church’s social concerns ministry, which helps fund needs such as rent and utility bills, summer youth programs and books for Brookdale Community College students. (Photo by Sarah Klepner. Click to enlarge)

RED BANK: MAN FORCES HIMSELF TO SPEAK UP

Ryan Lascelles 050815 2Ryan Lascelles on the lookout for someone to buttonhole in downtown Red Bank, and talking with Irina Kohut of Keansburg, below, about a painting she’d just made.  (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Ryan Lascelles 050815 1No, that’s not a headline out of the Onion. Ryan Lascelles is trying to outgrow a lifetime of social anxiety through an unusual experiment: by forcing himself to initiate conversations with at least three strangers a day for a month.

The 23-year-old Little Silver resident launched his endeavor last week in downtown Red Bank. And as luck would have it, the very first fish he hooked turned out to be none other than redbankgreen.

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RED BANK: FINDING FORTUNE IN HISTORY

TTFHouselogo2015On the evening of Friday, June 12, Two River Theater is the scene as The T. Thomas Fortune Project Committee presents another in a series of fundraiser events. Scheduled for the hours of 6 to 10 pm, the benefit will present a distinguished keynote speaker to be announced — and an opportunity for the greater Red Bank community to become involved with the effort to rescue and preserve one of the borough’s genuine historic treasures.

Located at 94 Drs. James Parker Boulevard, The T. Thomas Fortune House is one of only two National Historic Landmarks in the state of New Jersey (from a total of 57 such sites) with significance to African American heritage. Fortune, the pioneering African American journalist and editor, purchased the home in 1901, giving it the name of Maple Hill — and it was there that he began to do some of his most important work to change the social landscape of America. The Fortune Family remained in the home until 1913, and the property has been unoccupied for several years, falling into disrepair.

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RFH UP FOR FIFTH STRAIGHT LACROSSE TITLE

Defending five-time Shore Conference lacrosse champs Rumson-Fair Haven heads to yet another title game following its 6-0 demolition of Freehold Township at Toms River Saturday. The Bulldogs will be seeking their fifth consecutive title when they face undefeated Southern Regional at Monmouth University at 4 p.m. Tuesday. Shore Sports Zone has the action on video.

SICKELS POSTS BIG SPRING AT PENN STATE

garrett sickels 010112Former Red Bank Regional football standout Garrett Sickels closed out a big spring at Penn State with an honor as the team’s most improved defensive player, according to Fight On State. The 6-foot-4, 262-pound end, a redshirt sophomore from Red Bank, is in the running for a spot in the starting lineup this year after a freshman year in which he played in every game without starting, posting 13 tackles and two sacks. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

RFH: GIRLS HEAD TO SCT LACROSSE FINALS

The number-one seed Rumson-Fair Haven Lady Bulldogs earned a trip to the Shore Conference Tournament lacrosse finals with a 16-11 win over Colts Neck at Ocean Township Saturday. Brittany Bruno had five goals and Elizabeth Scarrone added four. The Lady Bulldogs will face Shore Regional at Monmouth University for the championship on Monday at 4 p.m. Shore Sports Zone.