Search Results for: Hobbymasters

TEAM HOBBYMASTERS GOBBLES UP THE TRACK

hobbymasters 112413-1A team of Radio Control race car drivers from Hobbymasters of Red Bank ruled the roost during the 2013 Turkey Race, held November 24 at South Jersey RC Raceway in Landisville, NJ. Pictured left to right are Venom Racing / Team Hobbymasters drivers George Tsakiris, Jerry Frazee, and Connor Placer, who combined for six AMain finishes during the annual event. They’ll be donating two whole Thanksgiving turkeys to the nonprofit Lunch Break of Red Bank, on behalf of the team and track.

HOBBYMASTERS SKATES BACK INTO BOARD BIZ

Hobbymasters employee Mychael, who declined to give his last name, shows off a board. Below, a board equipped with underside lighting. (Photos by Dan Natale. Click to enlarge)

By DAN NATALE

The zenith of skateboarding’s popularity  in Red Bank may be past, and skating downtown could land you in handcuffs these days. But after a nearly two-decade absence, Hobbymasters on Monmouth Street hopes to pick up where now-defunct skate retailers Revolutions, Circles Bike and Skate, and Stokaboka left off.

Since last month, Hobbymasters has been carrying skateboards and associated paraphernalia, such as wheels, trucks, bearings, and anything else that a skateboarder would need to start shredding. It’s now the only skateboarding shop in a town that not long ago had three.

This is the second time that Hobbymasters has tried the skateboard market. Owner Alan Placer says he sold skateboards throughout the 1980s, but stopped around the mid-90s, once skateboarding declined in popularity.

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RED BANK: THAI, MINI-DRONES, TACOS & MORE

red bank siam garden paradiseThe space vacated by Siam Garden, at the north end of the Galleria Red Bank, will soon get a new Thai restaurant run by a familiar chef. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn smallFans of Red Bank’s recently closed Siam Gardens will soon have a new Thai restaurant to check out, and won’t have to change their routes to get there.

This edition of redbankgreen‘s Retail Churn has the dish, as well as word about a new indoor, mini-drone-flying course and other business churnage.

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RED BANK: SIGNS OF CHURN DOWNTOWN

Sonya Cashner plans to open Broad & Brush at 26 Monmouth Street, one of two similar shops coming to town this summer. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Two businesses that offer do-it-yourself instruction in making rustic signs plan to open in downtown Red Bank this summer.

Yeah, that’s a thing, apparently, part of what one of the new contenders calls a trend in “farmhouse decor.”

Read all about that, and more of course, in this custom handcrafted edition of redbankgreen‘s Retail Churn.

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RED BANK: SIDEWALK SALE RETURNS

The dress code is casual and parking is free as the annual bargain bonanza returns to downtown Red Bank starting Friday. (Photo by Trish Russoniello. Click to enlarge.)

In fast-moving, forever evolving, Retail Churn-ing Red Bank, well-entrenched local traditions are increasingly rare. So when it comes to a decades-spanning institution like the Red Bank Sidewalk Sale, the benefit can be as much about providing continuity for longtime locals as it is about the thrill of discovery for relative newcomers.

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RED BANK: NO CONSENSUS AT PARKING FORUM

Architect Mike Simpson led the business group’s forum at the Red Bank Middle School Thursday night. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Only 17 or so Red Bank residents turned out on a rainy night for a forum on downtown parking Thursday.

And to the chagrin of the merchant group that sponsored it, few of them seemed to agree that the need for a new parking garage, let alone massive new development to go along with it, has been proven.

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RED BANK: TWO PARKING FORUMS PLANNED

Two public forums are in the works on the question of what to do about parking in downtown Red Bank. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Residents, merchants and visitors could get two chances to weigh in on downtown Red Bank’s parking crisis — or whether one even exists — at two public events in coming weeks.

Both events were characterized at Wednesday night’s semimonthly council meeting as next-steps responses to five plans presented by would-be developers of the borough-owned parking lot on White Street.

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RED BANK: PARKING PLANS GET FIRST AIRING

A standing-room crowd stuck around after the hourlong council meeting for nearly two hours of parking presentations. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

At an event with no equal in recent memory, and possibly in the 109-year history of the borough, five would-be developers trotted out plans to remake a large swath of downtown Red Bank Wednesday night.

Mixing elements of beauty pageant and planning board meeting, the special session of the borough parking committee drew a standing-room crowd to hear would-be builders tout their visions for massive parking and housing projects, some with retail thrown in as well.

The event was notable also for who was not there.

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RED BANK: PARKING FORUM OPENS ‘DIALOGUE’

Red Bank “is losing its position as a walking community” in part because of a lack of parking, said Joel McFadden, a White Street jeweler who served as event moderator.  (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Hoping to get a “dialogue” going with residents about the need for a downtown parking garage, Red Bank merchants hosted a town hall meeting that drew dozens to the borough middle school Monday night.

There, members of the Red Bank Business Alliance served up their perspectives on what they see as a longstanding problem that’s worsened in recent years under a changeover from a retail economy to one driven by restaurants and entertainment.

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CRAVINGS: GOOEY SATISFACTION IN A BOX

100316jrs-crave2Side orders from Jr’s: bacon burger cheese fries and sweet potato fries.  (Photo by Susan Ericson. Click to enlarge)

By SUSAN ERICSON

piehole_cravingsWhat do when you’re in the middle of a hot, late-night game of Magic: the Gathering and the munchies hit you?

There aren’t a lot of after-hours choices on the Greater Green, but gamers like Connor Murphy-Smith have gotten into the habit of ordering online from Jr’s in Red Bank to quell their cravings, whether they’re at home or playing at Hobbymasters in Red Bank or the Comic Crypt in Shrewsbury.

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RED BANK: SIDEWALK SALE TURNS 62

rb sidewalk sale 5 072713The Sidewalk Sale returns to Red Bank this weekend for its 62nd annual edition.

rb sidewalk sale 072116 1Regular readers of redbankgreen‘s Retail Churn feature can vouch that things often move at a brisk clip in the business district of a town that the New York Times recently touted for its “urban vibe.”

But one thing that’s remained a model of consistency amid the churn is the Red Bank Sidewalk Sale, the 62nd annual edition of which returns Friday and runs through Sunday.

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RED BANK: READY TO (NOT?) FLY AGAIN

hobbymasters 070115 1 hobbymasters 070115 2Back in the indoor skies at Red Bank’s Hobbymasters store: a giant post-World War I replica biplane that was returned to its post of 30 years Wednesday after a two-month restoration by the Jersey Coast Sport Fliers.

Built for radio-controlled flight, but never flown, by Richie Smith, a onetime store employee who died last year, the eye-catching aircraft, with a wingspan of more than six feet, is a customer favorite, says store owner Alan Placer.

“People who know it from when they were kids now bring their kids in to see it,” he said.   (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

RED BANK: SALES SOARING FOR DRONES

Alan Placer of Hobbymasters gives a quick demo of drone flying. Below, a matchbox-sized drone without a camera. (Photo and video by John T. Ward. Click photo to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

rb drone 070814 2By now, perhaps, you’ve seen the spectacular video shot from within the East River Fourth of July fireworks by a small, remote-controlled helicopter. Or the lovely one of the boardwalk in Ocean Grove and Asbury Park, as seen from a gentle distance above.

Less likely, you’ve seen aerial footage of roof inspections. But Red Bank’s Hobbymasters store is having trouble keeping up with demand for drones from real estate agents and roofers, as well as artists and his customary clientele of hobbyists, he tells redbankgreen.

“They’re outselling remote-controlled planes and cars combined,” he said.

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TOYMASTERS HOSTS CHRISTMAS IN JULY

hobbymastersThis July, kids can celebrate Christmas at Toymasters in Red Bank.Voted “New Jersey’s Best Toy Store” by New Jersey Monthly magazine, Toymasters is partnering with the borough-based nonprofit Lunch Break to raise funds for underprivileged children.

During the entire month of July, customers can make a donation and in return receive a customized ornament that will be hung on the Lunch Break Holiday Tree in the shop. All proceeds will directly support Lunch Break’s Adopt-A-Family Holiday Gift Program at the close of this year.

Last year, Lunch Break provided over 1,500 children with toys and gifts during the holiday season, a fact that prompted Toymasters owner Denise Zappoli to partner with the community resource, which has been serving neighbors in need since 1983.

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SEA BRIGHT: STORM-TOSSED TREASURES

Frank Torock scanning the beach in Sea Bright for hidden metal last month. (Photos by Dan Natale. Click to enlarge)

By DAN NATALE

The beaches of Sea Bright have been given a makeover in more ways than one since Hurricane Sandy. The shift in landscape has attracted a fresh raft of hobbyists.

They’re hard to miss: walking slowly, heads down, sweeping metal detectors over the sand in the hopes of finding some storm-churned treasure.

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IN FAIR HAVEN, A FANTASY WORLD ON RAILS


Railroad gardener Michael Humphreys could easily crush a dozen buildings if he were to lie across his “grown-ups’ playground.” (Photos by Stacie Fanelli. Click to enlarge.)

By STACIE FANELLI

In Michael Humphreys’ backyard are a covered wagon, a water tower, a livery stable, a totem pole, a sawmill and hundreds more relics of American history. Running through a miniature, imaginary town are his pride and joy: working locomotives built to scale.

Humphreys’ toy train collection, 20 years in the making, came to fruition eight years ago when he moved his family to Fair Haven, fenced in his yard, leveled the ground and built a railroad garden running half the length of his 60 x 35 foot yard.

“Basically, I’m a designer,” he said. “I’m making a theatrical effect.”

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DING! KA-CHING!

ferrari-hitA Red Bank patrol car had a fender-bender with a Ferrari 599 GTB (starting price: around $310,000) that was passing behind it on Broad Street during the third annual ‘Raduo D’Eleganza (Event of Elegance)’ Ferrari rally held downtown Sunday. Details of the accident were not immediately available from the police department Monday. (Click to enlarge)

Alan Placer shot video of the Ferraris arriving in town. Vroom, vroom.

IN PURSUIT OF SUSTAINABILITY

rb-green-teamAlan Placer, left, and Andres Simonson are two of the faces behind Red Bank’s effort to reduce adverse impacts on the natural environment.

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Before it even meets for the first time, Red Bank’s newest subcommittee has already chipped away at its goal.

Made up of volunteer residents, business owners and local officials, the Environmental Commission‘s Green Team was formed a couple months ago in a quest to have Red Bank join dozens of other towns in the state working toward the environmentally friendly, incentive-based municipal certification program Sustainable Jersey.

When it holds its first meeting next month, the Green Team plans to set the wheels in motion to earn the certification by June, said member Andres Simonson, who is also the Environmental Commission chairman.

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WEST SIDE CLEANUP, TOYS FOR SEAN & MORE

west-side-cleanup1
An effort to spruce up the streets of Red Bank’s West Side in April 2008, above, will be reprised this Saturday.

Done3A West Side cleanup effort, a toy drive for a boy at the center of an international custody battle, and several education-related fundraising efforts mark this edition of Done Good.

The cleanup, scheduled for Saturday, June 20, starting at 8a., is the second annual edition of the effort, dubbed “Operation Inasmuch.”
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A WEEK’S WORTH OF WAYS TO HELP

Img_390172Thanksgiving at Lunch Break was on Branches Catering in 2008. On Monday night, the West Long Branch facility hosts some three dozen restaurants to raise funds for the Red Bank soup kitchen.

Done2This long-overdue edition of Done Good — a periodic rundown of what's happening locally in the realms of people helping people and their communities — has tons to choose from for readers looking to lend a hand in the coming week.

It includes a gourmet's-delight event on behalf of Norma Todd's Lunch Break in Red Bank; a beach cleanup and a riverfront cleanup; a swell affair at Garmany on behalf of cancer research; and an opportunity to re-tinge the town in the interest of women's health.

Here are some of the choices:

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SKY-HIGH ON SOLAR

HobbymasterssolarAlan Placer on what used be called the roof but he now calls the “third floor” of Hobbymasters — the floor that makes money from the sun.

The solar panels are all in, and by this time next week, Arlene Placer of Hobbymasters on White Street can send JCP&L a condolence card instead of a hefty check each month.

The toy-and-gadget store’s rooftop solar array that redbankgreen broke the story on this summer is just about ready to fire up, says Arlene’s son, Alan. He oversaw the recent installation of what he believes is the biggest solar-power system in Monmouth County: 106 panels generating enough juice to power the equivalent of 10 average-sized homes.

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