mariachiAll dressed up for his debut performance on the greater Green, trumpeter/ bandleader Jose Hernandez brings his Sol de Mexico mariachi orchestra to the Count Basie stage on Tuesday.

Their never-ending tour of some 30-plus years has taken them the length and breadth of three continents; seen them play to a sold-out house at NYC’s Lincoln Center, and perform for at least four occupants of a certain white house in Washington, DC.

Still, when the members of Mariachi Sol de Mexico pull up in their tour bus at the Count Basie Theatre on Tuesday – Cinco de Mayo, no less – they’ll be newbies, purveying a highly infectious big-band blend to audience on the Greater Red Bank Green for the first time.

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050315 downtown  butler3 Downtown bartender John Butler makes PieHole a fresh strawberry margarita.  (Photos by Susan Ericson. Click to enlarge)


050315 downtown margarita4Maybe it was the sterling weather this past weekend, or maybe it was the swarm of happy folks packing the restaurants and bars in town that put us in a celebratory mood.

Remembering that Cinco de Mayo is this week, PieHole made its way to the Downtown in Red Bank with its enormous open front window view of Broad Street. Finding a couple of empty bar stools at the ready, we joined the already cheerful customers.

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050215 ydsales7050215 ydsales2Saturday was a bonanza for buyers of everything from creepy dolls to credenzas as the Red Bank and Fair Haven townwide yards sales went off in sunny style Saturday.

Industrious kids and adults hawked lemonade, coffee, donuts and fresh fruit; CD’s were the dirt cheap item of the day; and dogs could be found everywhere you shopped.
redbankgreen was there, naturally. Check out more photos after the jump. (Photo by Susan Ericson. Click to enlarge)

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lee kuo 050115lock menna 050115The first-ever Red Bank Mayor’s Charity Ball brought together three ex-mayors, the current one and some 250 of their friends at the Oyster Point Hotel Friday night. Among those in attendance: former Councilwoman Sharon Lee and restaurateur Victor Kuo, above, and Pastor John Lock, with Mayor Pasquale Menna, at right.

Proceeds from the $125-per-head event were earmarked for the Red Bank Public Library and the Parker Family Health Center.

redbankgreen grabbed dozens of photos during the cocktail hour overlooking our beautiful Navesink River. Click the “read more” to see who else was there. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

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empty bowlsRumson-Fair Haven senior Olivia Rosenberg and RFH art teacher Zack Wilson display the ceramic bowls that were created and sold to benefit The Food Bank of Monmouth and Ocean.

Press release from Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School

The recent “Empty Bowls” event hosted by Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School raised enough funds to provide 5,190 meals for the Foodbank of Monmouth and Ocean Counties.

Named for the empty bowls faced by local families who struggle to put food on the table, the fundraiser was open to the community and held on the evening of March 10 at Bingham Hall in Rumson. It featured beautiful original artwork in the form of 150 bowls created by RFH Ceramics students, as well as members of the RFH National Art Honor Society. The purchased ceramic bowls were filled with a variety of soups provided by members of the RFH school community.

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tortillaThe 2001 feature TORTILLA SOUP screens on Monday 5/4, as one of the May series of free film events at Middletown Library. 

The monthly series of free Movie Mondays at Middletown Township Public Library continues here in May — and while April’s schedule centered around a food-and-beverage theme, this month extends the celluloid smorgasbord for the next couple of weeks, shifting gears (prior to a holiday break) into somewhat less digestion-friendly dramatic territory.

The banquet at the biblioteque continues this Monday, May 4, with director Maria Ripoli’s 2001 feature Tortilla Soup. Co-written by Ang Lee — the Taiwanese-born filmmaker who gave us everything from Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon and Life of Pi to Brokeback Mountain and the first Hulk movie — it’s a portrait of a Mexican-American patriarch and chef (Hector Elizondo) who seeks to reacquire his taste for better living, with the help of his daughters (Jacqueline Obradors, Tamara Mello). And if you’re wondering just what vintage to pair with such an offering, read on.

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bandieraThe Hardest Working Musician in Shore Business, Bobby Bandiera writes his musical “Autobiography” in a special concert at the Count Basie on Saturday.

As commanding officer of the Jersey Shore Rock ‘N Soul Revue — and as a saloon singer supreme performing over the decades in the clubs, concert halls, tiki decks, taverns and dimly lit corners of coastal New Jersey — Bobby Bandiera has pretty much paid tribute to them all: the Beatles and the Stones; the Sun rockabillies and Motown soulmen; the AM radio one-hit-wonders and the FM rotation heavies.

So in a long, strange trip that’s taken him from smoke-choked pool halls and piano bars to the sold-out arenas of his road gig with Bon Jovi, there’s really only one career that still cries out for a proper salute: his own.

On Saturday night, Bandiera returns to Red Bank to address that glaring omission, with an “Autobiography” concert that assembles a rocking Rolodex of talented friends on the stage of one of the man’s favorite places to play, the Count Basie Theatre.

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tavoloThe bacon, sausage, ham and fresh mozzarella omelette at Tavolo Pronto. (Photo by Jim Willis. Click to enlarge)


morsels mediumSome mornings are so chaotic that we’re too busy to fry up a few slices of real bacon. It goes without saying that a breakfast without bacon is hardly worth eating, and so some mornings, we skip breakfast.

Then noon will roll around, and we’ll want to claw back that missed meal at a place that serves breakfast all day, but we also want a proper lunch that is savory and hearty. The omelette is one of those dishes that can confidently wear its morning bathrobe and slippers to the lunch table, and we’ve found one of our favorite and most reliable omelettes at Tavolo Pronto in Fair Haven.

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AUTHORITIES_RB3The crime and arrest reports below were provided by the Red Bank Police Department for the period of April 23 to April 30, 2015. This information is unedited.


Criminal Mischief occurring on 4-24-15 at Montgomery Terrace. Victim reported that unknown person(s) let the air out of tire on parked vehicle. Ptl. Michael Zadlock.

Theft occurring at Tower Hill Drive residence on 4-23-15 and 4-25-15. Victim reported that unknown person(s) stole cash and pair of gold and diamond earrings from residence.   Ptl. Shane Dengel.

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shrews historicClockwise from top left: the Shrewsbury Borough landmarks of the Friends Meeting House, Allen House, Old Christ Church and  First Presbyterian Church are among the historic sites on the Weekend in Old Monmouth Tour.

If it’s the first Saturday and Sunday in May, this must be the Weekend in Old Monmouth — and if you’re sufficiently curious about the rich history of the place where you live, there’s never been a better time to take a closer look at the area’s many historic places, some of which you’ve surely passed by countless times on your way to someplace a bit less charming.

A series of free, self-guided tours of some 45 homes, meeting halls and houses of worship in Monmouth County, the eighth annual event (brought to you by the Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders and the Monmouth County Historical Commission) runs four color-coded tour routes on Saturday (10 am – 5 pm) and Sunday 3 (12 – 5 pm) — with all stops on the tour synching up their visitation hours, and waiving any admission fees for the duration of the weekend.

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The_Ruthie_n'_Junie,_Belford,_NJ_by_Michael_ScherfenMichael Scherfen — whose painting “The Ruthie ‘n Junie, Belford NJ” is pictured above — was among the award winners at last year’s Canterbury Art Show in Rumson. The annual event returns to St. George’s Church in September, with a May 17 deadline for entries .

Press release from St. George’s by the River Episcopal Church

Artists in all media are being invited to submit their work for the 2015 edition of the Canterbury Art Show … a Tapestry of the Arts, a premier local exhibition and sale of juried and non-juried artwork hosted at St. George’s by the River Episcopal Church in Rumson.

The three-day event returns to the historic Lincoln Avenue church on Labor Day weekend — Friday September 4, Saturday September 5, and Sunday September 6 — with a preview Meet the Artists reception taking place on Thursday, September 3.

Artists are invited to visit the event’s website to fill out the Participation Form and register for the event. Artists may choose to submit their work for any or all of the show’s segments:  the Juried Gallery, the Non-Juried Treasures, and the Non-Juried Portfolio Pieces.  The 2015 registration fees and Artist Participation forms must be received no later than May 17, 2015, and participation in the Non-Juried Treasures segment is limited to the first 65 received Artist Participation forms, with payment.

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Press release from Monmouth Reform Temple

Tikkun Olam, the Jewish tenet of “Repairing the World,” will be on full display in May during two major social action events planned by the Monmouth Reform Temple (MRT) in May. On Monday, May 11, MRT members will join congregants at Saint Anthony of Padua Church (121 Bridge Avenue in Red Bank), to launch the Shine A Light program to install bicycle lights for members of the Red Bank community.

The program was the brainchild of MRT member Dean Ross, who seeks to improve the safety on the roads for the nighttime bicycling community. The Red Bank businessman explains, “We have had a few accidents, and some near misses in Red Bank with residents on bicycles at night who do not wear reflective clothing or have any kind of light and motorists don’t see them until they are just upon them.”

He adds, “This is what Judaism is about, getting other people involved to help others.”

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