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RED BANK: BURNHAM DISHES AND… OOPS!

Councilman Mike Whelan with Tiffanie Borges at the 2016 Mayor’s Ball, above. Below, then-Councilwoman Cindy Burnham at the same event with Industry magazine’s Anthony Barbera. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank’s semimonthly council meeting veered into Page Six territory Wednesday night when former Councilwoman Cindy Burnham suggested Councilman Mike Whelan was dating someone other than his longtime girlfriend.

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RED BANK: NORTH POLE CALLING

RBR students Stacy Osorio, on the phone above, making pre-Christmas calls with Stacey Tepoz from Santa’s workshop (borough hall) earlier this month. Below, Heather O’Donnell cracks up after calling a wrong number with Emily Maier. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

Press release from Red Bank Regional High:

Little Silver:  A big part of the Christmas season for little girls and boys is visiting Santa Claus and reciting him their Christmas wish list.  That is not always possible for some boys and girls in the Red Bank community, especially those whose families do not own or drive cars and can’t take them to visit the local mall, where Santa usually sets up shop.  So nine years ago, community leader David Prown, assisted by his good friend Enrico Ciabattoni, facilitated a special communication with Santa Claus and those kids in Red Bank he might have missed.

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RED BANK: SNOW ADDS MAGIC TO LIGHT-UP

The first snowfall of the season added to the magical air of the Christmas tree lighting event at Ralph ‘Johnny Jazz’ Gatta Park in Red Bank Saturday.

The event, organized by the borough Parks & Rec department, featured a visit by Santa Claus, who arrived by fire truck. Were you there? Check out redbankgreen‘s photos from the event below. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

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RED BANK: UNDEFEATED SOCCER TEAM LAUDED

Sporting neckties that many of them learned to tie just an hour earlier, the members of the Red Bank Middle School boys’ soccer team appeared at the borough council meeting Wednesday night, when they were lauded for a second consecutive undefeated season.

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ON THE GREEN: REASONS TO BE THANKFUL

For Thanksgiving 2017, redbankgreen‘s All Good page is loaded up with fresh news about kids, charities, volunteers, teachers, philanthropy and more on the Greater Red Bank Green.

Take a moment to scroll through the dozen or so newest posts, or do an even deeper dive into the All Good archive. Seeing all the good work that goes on around here may inspire others to chip in. But if nothing else, we’re hoping it gives readers additional reasons to be thankful for their neighbors, and a little more hopeful about the future.

Happy Thanksgiving to all, and thank you for reading redbankgreen.

RED BANK: AN EARNEST PROPOSAL, ACCEPTED

”An engagement should come on a young girl as a surprise, pleasant or unpleasant, as the case may be,” says a character in Oscar Wilde’s Victorian farce, ‘The Importance of Being Earnest.’

And just hours before the opening-night performance of the play at the Two River Theater in Red Bank Friday night, one of the theater’s employees was surprised by a real-life marriage proposal on the stage. (Photos by Yurik Lozano. Click to enlarge)

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RED BANK: DOG FOUND 80 MILES FROM HOME

Wanda greets Jennifer May, center, and her children Bryn and Dennis Tibus on their reunion in Red Bank Saturday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

A dog who wandered off in Warren County on Wednesday and wound up in Red Bank later that day was reunited with her owners Saturday.

How the 15-year-old black Lab-border collie mix turned up 80 miles from home remained a mystery, however.

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RED BANK: NEW BELLHAVEN PLAN WINS PRAISE

The new concept plan for Bellhaven Natural Area includes an observation deck, similar to the one shown for illustration purposes above left; playground equipment; and a play area covered with a rubberized safety surface, shown in light green. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Two years after residents gave a thorough hosing to a plan for a spray park in a West Side wetlands, Red Bank officials unveiled a new plan for the Bellhaven Natural Area Wednesday night.

This one got a warmer reception.

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RED BANK: NEW STINK OVER BELLHAVEN COSTS

A 2012 image outlines the extent of wetlands at Bellhaven Natural Area at the western terminus of Locust Avenue. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Two years after abandoning a controversial “sprayground” proposed for the Bellhaven Natural Area, the Red Bank borough council is moving ahead with plans for a playground at the site.

At its semimonthly meeting Wednesday night, the council approved nearly $20,000 in additional engineering costs for the site, a move that prompted fresh objections.

“This is deja vu all over again,” said Bill Meyer, owner of a downtown commercial building. The borough has already spent $73,000  engineering fees on the site, and “that money was burned and wasted,” he said. Read More »

SHREWSBURY: SEABROOK ZONE ISSUE CITED

The opening of the Seabrook House facility drew protesters last Thursday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Shrewsbury officials have notified representatives of a new addiction-counseling center that a key aspect of the operation appears to conflict with local zoning law, redbankgreen has learned.

Five days after Governor Chris Christie got into a shouting match with protesters at the opening of the Seabrook House outpatient facility on White Street, borough Attorney Martin Barger confirmed the nonprofit has been told by letter that its plan for group counseling sessions is not permitted in the zone.

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LITTLE SILVER: ESSAY LAUDS “TINY” TOWN

Jack Stamer gets a smooch from his grandmother, Edie Levine, after reading his essay to the Little Silver council Monday night. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

What’s special about growing up in Little Silver? A Red Bank Regional senior’s essay on that theme earned him $1,000 toward college expenses Monday night.

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RED BANK: COP PLANS MENTORING PROGRAM

Patrolman Mike Zadlock, who’s spearheading a project called ‘Club 109’ to engage middle school boys. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

The boy hadn’t been showing up at school, so a Red Bank police officer was dispatched to the family’s home to make sure everything was OK one day in January.

Nothing was amiss when Patrolman Michael Zadlock arrived. But the boy’s single-parent mother said she simply couldn’t get her son to go to school, and so she would reluctantly leave the pre-teen at home when she went off to work, Zadlock said.

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FAIR HAVEN: ACME CENTER MAKEOVER OK’D

Three renderings of the proposed monument sign that proved a sticking point for planning board members. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

A makeover of Fair Haven’s dowdy Acme shopping center won borough planning board approval Tuesday night, but minus a proposed slab of signage that dominated a three-hour meeting.

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RED BANK: EASTER EGG HUNT HOPS TO BASIE

This year’s edition of the Red Bank Easter Egg hunt, traditionally held at Eastside Park, will be held Saturday at Count Basie Fields to make it easier for more families to attend, according to Parks and Rec Director Charlie Hoffman.

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FAIR HAVEN: ACME CENTER CHANGES DETAILED

Forman Street resident Bonnie Moore photographs an exhibit used in the hearing. Below, an illustration showing proposed changes to building 1, on the western end of the site. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Overdue for a new look, the 1950s-vintage Fair Haven strip mall anchored by an Acme supermarket is also badly in need of a new parking scheme, its owner told the borough planning board Thursday night.

It would get both by the end of October if the board approves an extensive makeover plan in coming weeks, Dan Hughes, a principal in the company that bought it for for $5.8 million two years ago, told the board.

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RED BANK: ONE-STOP WEDDING BIZ OPENS

The Wedding Establishment takes over a space vacated by Love Lane Tuxedos 13 years ago. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn smallAs the son of a singer in a wedding band, Mike Hernandez Jr. says he “grew up in the wedding business.” He was there when the band came to the house for its weekly rehearsals, and when no babysitter was available, he’d be schlepped to gigs, killing time behind the drummer.

That, and much more, he says, makes him well-qualified to create something he doesn’t believe has ever succeeded before: a one-stop market for wedding services. And in doing so, he’s ended one of downtown Red Bank’s most enduring vacancies.

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RED BANK: WOMEN UNITE AGAINST (UNNAMED)

rb rally 012117 4Several hundred participants flowed into Riverside Gardens Park for the Greater Red Bank Women’s Initiative Rally Saturday.  (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

rb rally 012117 17One day after the start of a new administration in Washington, D.C., hundreds of protesters gathered in Red Bank’s Riverside Gardens Park to push back against its promised agenda.

But if the policies of newly inaugurated President Donald Trump were foremost on their minds, speaker after speaker at the event avoided mentioning him by name.

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RED BANK: WOMEN PLAN ‘NONPARTISAN’ RALLY

riverside-gardens-park-0917162A gathering to reaffirm Red Bank’s “inclusiveness and tolerance” is planned at Riverside Gardens Park the day after the Trump inauguration. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

[REPOSTING OF JANUARY 9 ARTICLE, with additional details about who’s speaking.]

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03A group of Red Bank-area women have obtained an OK to hold an open-air rally for human rights and other concerns one day after the Trump inauguration.

The newly formed group, called the Greater Red Bank Women’s Initiative, won approval Monday from the borough government’s special events committee to hold a rally in Riverside Gardens Park on Saturday, January 21, according to Ellen Herman, one of the organizers.

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