RED BANK: STUDENTS HELP FEED THE HUNGRY

Brigid Hempstead, right, with her twin sister Siobhan and teacher Brian Nesci planting vegetables on the lot last Saturday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

red bank, nj, done good,On a vacant lot in Red Bank, students from Red Bank Catholic High School are mixing the ancient lessons of agriculture with new technology to help tackle food insecurity amid a global pandemic.

They’re also hoping to create a new model for food-sharing.

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RED BANK: COOKIES, SOAP, TATS, GOLF & MORE

Sweet Bee Bakeshop has taken over the space vacated by Sugarush cupcakes at 37 East Front Street. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn smallAn established, and local, wholesale cookie baker is making the move to storefront retail in Red Bank as soon as next week.

Also in the works downtown: an ‘occult’ soap shop, a tattoo parlor and a ‘golf lounge.’ Read all about ’em this edition of redbankgreen‘s Retail Churn.

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RED BANK: JEWELERS RETIRE, SELL BUILDING

Vance Valente at Quicksilver Handcrafted Jewelry on Saturday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn smallThis edition of redbankgreen‘s Retail Churn might be titled “keeping churn to a minimum.”

Because while we’re reporting the closure of a downtown shop – due to retirement, not the economy – the change comes with a significant real estate deal aimed at keeping small shops alive.

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RED BANK: SKATE SHOP ROLLS INTO TOWN

Feet First opens on Monmouth Street, having skated across the Navesink from Middletown. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn smallIn this edition of redbankgreen‘s Retail Churn: a skateboard shop rolls into downtown Red Bank, a comic book shop relocates, and the pandemic economy claims another handful of stores.

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RED BANK: RACIST SLUR, OR SLIP OF TONGUE?

Sue Viscomi, right, with Hazim Yassin and Kate Triggiano at borough hall in April, 2018. All three ran for council that year. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njA Red Bank board of ed member faced sharp criticism Thursday for a purported racist rendition of the borough business administrator’s name the night before.

But Sue Viscomi vehemently denied referring to Ziad Shehady as “Mr. Jihad.”

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RED BANK: CENTER DEBATE CONTINUES

Councilwoman Kate Triggiano, center of bottom row, prevailed on a resolution regarding the Redevelopment Agency. (Zoom screengrab. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njSarcasm and insults flew Wednesday night as the Red Bank council yet again clashed over the future of the mothballed Senior Center.

This time, residents provided much of the ire. Read More »

RED BANK: BROADWALK II ON AGENDA

red bank broad street plazaVisitors dining on (and in) Broad Street in June. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njAn effort to spark downtown business activity as the pandemic nears its second year is among the items on the Red Bank council’s agenda for Wednesday night.

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RED BANK: HOSPITAL TO OWN GARAGE

The garage, built in 1983, became the subject of a lease-purchase deal between the town and Riverview 17 years later. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njIt’s a mere formality, but Riverview Medical Center is slated to become the owner of Red Bank’s only publicly-owned parking garage Friday.

At its regular meeting Wednesday night, the borough council authorized officials to sign off on a property transfer worked out when the current council president was in middle school.

The deal adds to the nonprofit hospital’s growing portfolio of real estate.

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FAIR HAVEN: DUNKIN’ AIMS FOR FRESH START

The new shop as it appeared before dawn Wednesday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topicAfter nearly two and a half years of town-splitting arguments, Fair Haven now has a Dunkin’ coffee shop.

Considering the wringer he went through to get to this point, owner Domenic Sequeira was in a pretty affable mood Wednesday morning.

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RED BANK: MENNA APOLOGIZES TO MURPHY

Governor Phil Murphy, right, and First Lady Tammy Murphy with Mayor Pasquale Menna at the Red Bank Classic in 2018. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topicRed Bank Mayor Pasquale Menna said he apologized to Governor Phil Murphy Tuesday for an incident in which Murphy and his family were harassed by louts as they ate dinner downtown Sunday.

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RED BANK: MURPHYS HECKLED AT DINNER

red bank BROAD STREET PHIL TAMMY JOSH MURPHY 061820Governor Phil Murphy, First Lady Tammy Murphy and their son Josh eating dinner at Char in June. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topicGovernor Phil Murphy took an understanding tone Monday, less than 24 hours after he and his family were harangued by foulmouthed passersby while eating dinner in Red Bank.

Asking critics to “leave my family out of this,” Murphy also used the verbal assault as an indication that New Jerseyans need to seek common ground during “an incredibly stressful time.”

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RED BANK: THAI FOOD & CLOTHING CHURN IN

Mos Neammanee owns Rice Box with his brother, Khomsun. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn smallOne step back and two steps forward for Red Bank’s central business district?

A Thai restaurant and a clothing boutique open next door to one another downtown, while a Broad Street business quietly calls it quits. Read all about them in this edition of redbankgreen‘s Retail Churn.

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RED BANK: ‘SNO GO FOR WINTER BROADWALK

Empty tables and idle heaters on Broadwalk on a chilly Sunday evening in October. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njRed Bank’s in-street shopping and dining plaza known as ‘Broadwalk’ will go on winter hiatus at the end of November.

Borough council members informally agreed Wednesday night that the prospect of dealing with a snowstorm before winter is over makes keeping the plaza going impractical.

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RED BANK: PIZZERIA & JUICE BAR CHURN IN

Another pizza restaurant plans to take the vacant former home of Pacini’s at 177 Broad Street. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Commercial real estate activity may be down because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but Red Bank continuues to attract small shops that want in on whatever action is happening.retail churn smallx

In this edition of redbankgreen‘s Retail Churn, we’ve got word on a new pizzeria and a juice bar signing leases, and the sale of a giant building in the heart of downtown.

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RED BANK: BREAD-BASED CAFÉ TO OPEN

michele ellis great harvest 102020 2Michele Ellis in her new restaurant on Broad Street. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn smallWith restaurants struggling through historically poor conditions brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, it might seem absolutely nuts to start a new one.

But the owner of a bread-based eatery that plans to open in Red Bank this week says key lessons of the past eight months are, well, baked into her plan.

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RED BANK: GYM PLANNED FOR CORNER SITE

The former home of Atlantic Glass on Maple Avenue is getting a tenant after a long vacancy. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn smallA high-visibility Red Bank building gets a makeover for use as a gym; movie screenings return to White Street; and an insurance agency takes over a storefront.

Read all about them in this early autumn edition of redbankgreen‘s Retail Churn.

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RED BANK: NIGHT OUT LIGHTS UP BASIE FIELDS

For the second year in a row, Red Bank police hosted their annual National Night Out Against Crime community barbecue at Count Basie Fields Tuesday night.

This years’s edition was held two months later than usual, however. It also featured temperature checks of attendees at the entry gate, as well as lots of facial coverings – all, of course, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

But dozens of families enjoyed games and free food, courtesy of the police department and other organizations. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

RED BANK: COVID-19 CLAIMS TWO BUSINESSES

Claudette Herring and Lauren Phillips at Via45 Monday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn smallIt was a day of mixed emotions for the owners of two Red Bank businesses as they closed up shop Monday.

At Via45, restaurateurs Lauren Phillips and Claudette Herring ended an 11-year run on Broad Street. Around the corner on Monmouth Street, Marissa Clifford oversaw the final children’s birthday party at Paint A Tee.

This 400th installment of Retail Churn has the details on those latest economic victims of the pandemic and other changes in the downtown mix.

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RED BANK: DOWNTOWN SOLD

The conjoined buildings at center, above, have changed hands, along with the liquor license. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

See UPDATE below

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank’s Downtown restaurant and night club, a major nightlife draw, has new owners.

The West Front Street business has been closed since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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