VIRUS UPDATE: DEATH & INFECTION TOTALS UP

red bank surf taco 040820A masked woman leaving Surf Taco on Broad Street in Red Bank with a takeout order Wednesday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

[See UPDATE below]

By JOHN T. WARD

redbankgreen hot topicThe grim roster of COVID-19 deaths continued to grow as the Murphy Administration braced for a possible “surge” of hospitalizations, officials said Thursday.

More than 14,400 new patients could hit the healthcare system “over the next two to three days,” double the number currently hospitalized, said state Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli, citing a continually-updated projection.

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VIRUS UPDATE: ARNONE KNOCKS CLOSINGS

A 2017 view of the Shrewsbury River, Sea Bright and the Atlantic Ocean from Hartshorne Woods in Middletown, one of the Monmouth County parks closed by Murphy’s order. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

A Monmouth County Freeholder on Thursday teed up Governor Phil Murphy’s order that all state and county parks be closed indefinitely to help curb the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

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RED BANK: ‘BUNNY PARADE’ CHEERS WEST SIDE

red bank easter parade 040820red bank easter parade 040820With an assist from police and the volunteer fire department, Red Bank’s parks and rec department put on a one-vehicle ‘parade’ featuring the Easter Bunny Wednesday.

The meandering parade brought some springtime cheer to families on the West Side of town who, like most New Jerseyans, were housebound by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

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VIRUS UPDATE: DEATHS SOAR AS CASES EASE

red bank elm place 040720A woman with her face covered by a scarf speaks with a motorist on Elm Place in Red Bank Tuesday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

[See UPDATE below]

By JOHN T. WARD

redbankgreen hot topicAn awful “paradox” was evident as deaths from COVID-19 soared and the number of new cases continued to ease in New Jersey, Governor Phil Murphy said Wednesday.

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RED BANK: ‘BUNNY PARADE’ SCHEDULED

This item is from an announcement posted on the Red Bank borough website Tuesday evening.

In lieu of the annual Egg Hunt, the Recreation Department has scheduled a “Bunny Parade” for Wednesday, April 8 and Thursday, April 9.

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VIRUS UPDATE: ‘FLATTENING’ SIGNS SEEN

murphy mask 040720 1Governor Phil Murphy removes a protective mask at the start of his daily crisis briefing Tuesday. (YouTube screengrab. Click to enlarge.)

[See UPDATE below]

By JOHN T. WARD

redbankgreen hot topicAfter a two-day lull, the deaths of another 232 New Jersey residents have been attributed to the COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Phil Murphy said Tuesday.

At the same time, recent data suggest a possible “flattening” of new coronavirus cases, he said.

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VIRUS UPDATE: COUNTY DEATH TOLL EASES

Monmouth County COVID-19 fatalities

Monmouth County’s COVID-19 death toll nearly tripled last week, but has slowed in recent days. (Graph by Voro.com. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

redbankgreen hot topicNew Jersey’s losses in the COVID-19 pandemic rose again Sunday, when the monthlong death toll surpassed 1,000, Governor Phil Murphy reported Monday.

He and a top law enforcement official also blasted attendees of a Rumson lawn concert held Saturday for alleged “vile” comments directed at police.

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RED BANK: LIFE BECOMES A MASK-ERADE

fair haven masks 040320.jpgred bank covid-19 masks 040420 3Mask-wearing workers installed a sign for a law office in in Fair Haven Friday. “It’s not as annoying as I thought it would be,” one said of the mask.

That day, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommended that people wear cloth face coverings to help slow the spread of the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 in settings where social distancing is difficult.

The suggestion was quickly taken up, as seen in the photos above and below taken on the Greater Red Bank Green Friday and Saturday. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

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VIRUS UPDATE: FEWER DEATHS REPORTED

By JOHN T. WARD

redbankgreen hot topicGovernor Phil Murphy’s administration reported 71 new deaths of New Jersey residents in the COVID-19 pandemic Sunday, a sharp drop from the 200 reported a day earlier.

The death toll also continued to ease in Monmouth County, the state reported.

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VIRUS UPDATE: 200 MORE DEATHS REPORTED

red bank lunch break masks 040320Mask-wearers lined up for free meals at Lunch Break in Red Bank Friday. Murphy singled out Lunch Break for praise in the crisis. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

redbankgreen hot topic

Governor Phil Murphy paused for a moment of silence Saturday after announcing another 200 New Jersey deaths from the COVID-19 pandemic.

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VIRUS UPDATE: COVID-19 CARNAGE CONTINUES

little silver surgical mask Surgical masks and improvised face coverings were a common sight Friday, as here on Prospect Avenue in Little Silver. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

[See UPDATE below]

By JOHN T. WARD

redbankgreen hot topic

Flags across New Jersey were ordered lowered “immediately and indefinitely” as the carnage of COVID-19 claimed another 113 state residents, Governor Phil Murphy said Friday.

The symbolic gesture will serve as a “constant memorial” during “one of the greatest tragedies” in the state’s history, Murphy said at his daily briefing on the crisis.

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RED BANK: BASIE FILM FEST GOES VIRTUAL

Wondering how to fill the hours while housebound by the COVID-19 pandemic? You might binge on the 27 bitesized movies in the Count Base Center for the Arts Teen & College Film Fest, which this year is a virtual affair.

Here are three entries, one from each category: middle school (above), high school and college (below).

After you’ve watched these, hop over to the festival page, watch the 24 others, and cast your vote for the your favorites.

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LITTLE SILVER: ROBERT SICKLES SR. DIES

bob sickles sr. 042208Robert Sickles Sr. riding his cherished 1948 John Deere MT tractor in 2008. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Robert Sickles Sr., the patriarch of a family farm in Little Silver that traces its agricultural roots back more than three centuries, died “peacefully at his home” Monday, according to an obituary posted by Thompson Funeral Home in Red Bank Wednesday.

He was 92 years old.

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VIRUS UPDATE: NEW JERSEY DEATHS HIT 537

red bank navesink boat 040220A socially-distanced boat heads out onto our beautiful Navesink River off Red Bank Thursday. (Click to enlarge.)

[See UPDATE below]

By JOHN T. WARD

redbankgreen hot topic

New Jersey added 182 more deaths to the COVID-19 toll as the number of state residents known to be infected blew past 25,000, Governor Phil Murphy said Thursday.

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VIRUS UPDATE: COVID-19 DEATH TOLL SPIKES

red bank navesink river 040120A new month begins with a lovely sunrise over our beautiful Navesink River, as seen from the Route 35 bridge Wednesday morning. (Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

redbankgreen hot topic

With COVID-19-related death and infection rates rising faster than ever, “we’re beginning to feel the real strain on the critical care” segment of the healthcare system in the northern part of New Jersey, state Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli said Wednesday.

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RED BANK: CRISIS DELAYS FARMERS’ MARKET

Mother’s Day is still five weeks away, but this year’s edition won’t be accompanied by the customary opening of the Red Bank Farmer’s Market.

George Sourlis, whose family-owned Galleria of Red Bank hosts the popular Sunday market, tells redbankgreen that this year’s start has been indefinitely postponed by the COVID-19 crisis. It will open once the pandemic has passed, he said.

The seasonal farmstand typically runs through November.  (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

VIRUS UPDATE: STATE DEATH TOLL UP SHARPLY

IHME NJ COVID-19 forecast 033120A hospital use projection for New Jersey by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation shows an anticipated surge in the first half of April. Projections assume continued social distancing and other protective measures. To view the methods used to produce the projection, click here. (Graphic by IHME. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

redbankgreen hot topic

Sixty-nine New Jerseyans died Monday as the global COVID-19 contagion continued its tear through the state, Governor Phil Murphy said Tuesday.

Of 267 resident deaths so far in the crisis, 223 have occurred in the last seven days, with the toll accelerating sharply from Monday’s report of 37 deaths.

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VIRUS UPDATE: NEW JERSEY TOLL SOARS

murphy covid projections 033020Charts used by the Murphy administration Monday show the surge in cases with no social distancing, left, and partial compliance, right. (Graphs by NJ.gov. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

redbankgreen hot topicNew Jersey’s daily death toll and COVID-19 caseload had soared since Sunday, Governor Phil Murphy reported Monday.

With 37 more fatalities and 3,347 more patients testing positive for the coronavirus, Murphy continued to hammer home his message that residents need to “stay home” until the crisis eases.

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VIRUS UPDATE: DEATH TOLL EASES

By JOHN T. WARD

redbankgreen hot topicAfter a weeklong climb, New Jersey’s daily death toll from the COVID-19 virus eased Saturday, Governor Phil Murphy’s administration reported Sunday.

At the same time, more than 2,300 state residents tested positive for the virus. Read More »

VIRUS UPDATE: ILLNESS, DEATH COUNTS SOAR

Normally bustling, downtown Red Bank was people-free and quiet at 9 p.m. Friday under the governor’s week-old “stay-home” order. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

redbankgreen hot topicThirty-two more New Jersey residents died as the the COVID-19 contagion tightened its grip on the state, Governor Phil Murphy said Saturday.

With the state’s death toll now at 140, the pandemic “is a pass/fail test,” Murphy said at his daily pandemic briefing on the crisis. “This is life or death.”

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VIRUS UPDATE: PANDEMIC TOLL CLIMBS

red bank ymca blood drive 032620 2With blood supplies running low because of the pandemic’s impact on regular drives, about 50 people made appointments for well-spaced donations at Red Bank’s YMCA Thursday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

[See UPDATE below]

By JOHN T. WARD

redbankgreen hot topicCOVID-19 continued to ravage New Jersey, with 19 more deaths from the global pandemic reported Thursday.

The number of state residents who have tested positive for the coronavirus soared to 6,876, an increase of 2,492 from Wednesday, Governor Phil Murphy said in his daily briefing.

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VIRUS UPDATE: DEATH TOLL & CASELOAD RISE

Flowers in bloom alongside a nearly vehicle-free Harding Road in Fair Haven Wednesday morning. (Photo by Trish Russoniello. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

The COVID-19 pandemic toll continue to rise, as Governor Phil Murphy announced 18 new deaths in New Jersey Wednesday.

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VIRUS UPDATES: BLOOD, FOOD DRIVES SLATED

red bank ymca blood drive 032420No walk-ins will be allowed at the blood drive. Below, an American Red Cross letter addresses safety concerns. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

American Red Cross COVID-19.jpgA blood drive employing “extreme precautions” is scheduled for Thursday in Red Bank to help address a shortage worsened by the COVID-19 pandemic.

A ‘drop & go” food drive will be held at the same time.

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VIRUS UPDATE: MONMOUTH SEEKS GEAR

red bank cooper bridge 032420 1Joggers crossing the relatively quiet Route 35 Cooper’s Bridge between Red Bank and Middletown Tuesday evening. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

redbankgreen hot topicContrary to an anti-COVID-19 directive by Governor Phil Murphy, Monmouth County officials said Wednesday that they are “starting to see” signs of non-residents relocating to vacation homes.

They also issued an appeal for medical supplies to help protect front-line testers and healthcare providers.

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