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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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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ON THE GREEN: RED BANK JOINS MOVE ONLINE

Fair Haven remote council meeting 032320Fair Haven’s March 23 council meeting, conducted via Zoom from the office of Forefront Incorporated, drew 68 attendees. (YouTube screen grab. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Thanks to a videocamera placed on a conference room table, Fair Haven residents got a close-up view of Mayor Ben Lucarelli’s beard when the town’s governing body held its first-ever online-only public session two weeks ago.

Now, thanks to the limits on public gatherings in the COVID-19 pandemic, Red Bank is also about to enter the fuzzy world of public sessions at which no members of the public are present.

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RED BANK: YASSIN GETS POLS TO PONY UP

Councilman Hazim Yassin in February, 2019. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank Councilman Hazim Yassin tells redbankgreen he has assembled a bipartisan coalition of elected officials from across New Jersey to donate funds from their campaign warchests to the fight against the coronavirus.

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RED BANK: MENNA BLASTS HEALTH ‘RUMORS’

pasquale menna 031120Mayor Pasquale Menna speaks with school board President Fred Stone at a March 11 ceremony opening the new primary school emergency access road. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

[UPDATE, 4:40 p.m.: Menna tells redbankgreen he has been released from the hospital after treatment as a presumed-positive patient, according to he chart, though he has not received test results yet. He is home and expects to remain self-isolated for the next two weeks, he said. Meantime, the council workshop meeting scheduled for Wednesday has been canceled.]

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank Mayor Pasquale Menna, who said he is hospitalized “as a precaution” in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, blasted former councilwoman Cindy Burnham and an online publication Monday for spreading “rumors” about his health in recent days.

Separately, borough Business Administrator Ziad Shehady told redbankgreen that Burnham “should be brought up on charges” for what he called her “blatant lies” about him.

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RED BANK: IS SCHOOL REOPENING IN SIGHT?

red bank middle school 032220Red Bank’s schools have been closed since March 16. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Are Red Bank’s schools going to reopen April 20?

A district posting Thursday afternoon appeared to suggest they might, just an hour or so after Governor Phil Murphy threw cold water on talk that an end to his indefinite school shutdown order might be in sight.

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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: SCHOOL IMPACTS REVIEWED

red bank regional rbrRed Bank Regional has been closed by the pandemic since March 10. (Photo by Trish Russoniello. Click to enlarge.)

This story was written and produced by NJ Spotlight. It is being republished under a special NJ News Commons content-sharing agreement related to COVID-19 coverage. To read more, visit njspotlight.com.

By JOHN MOONEY

Gov. Phil Murphy settled one question Tuesday for New Jersey’s 2,500 public schools and 1.4 million students in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic — but left plenty unanswered.

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ON THE GREEN: MEETINGS MOVE ONLINE

Fair Haven Board of Ed members sat well-spaced at a meeting carried live on YouTube last week. (YouTube screen grab. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Fair Haven’s board of ed held its first-ever virtual meeting last Wednesday.

With five members seated well apart from one another in the Knollwood School gym to minimize the possible transmission of the COVID-19 virus, the board had a quorum. Four other members participated via the Zoom conferencing app. And the public, barred from appearing in person, chimed in via the chat function on YouTube, where the meeting was live-streamed.

Among the most frequent comments: “we can’t hear you.”

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ON THE GREEN: VIRUS UPDATES

The pandemic has impacted train schedules and operations at the Little Silver Train Station. (Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Here’s a quick look at some impacts of the COVID-19 virus on the Greater Red Bank Green.

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RED BANK: SHEHADY COVID-19 POSITIVE

ziad shehadyZiad Shehady at borough hall in December, 2018. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Business Administrator Ziad Shehady has tested positive for the COVID-19 virus, he told redbankgreen Thursday.

But he’s working from home and hasn’t experienced any symptoms worse than a common cold, he said.

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LITTLE SILVER: RBR STAFFER VIRUS-POSITIVE

red bank regional 031220 1Red Bank Regional became the first school in New Jersey to close when it shut down for a “deep cleaning” March 10. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

A Red Bank Regional High School staff member has tested positive for the COVID-19 coronavirus that’s infecting Americans in growing numbers.

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VIRUS IMPACTS: BOROUGH RESCINDS ORDER

A sign on the door of the Welsh Farms convenience store on East Front Street in Red Bank. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

The following are dispatches from the Greater Red Bank Green as we settle into the widespread shutdowns and upheavals of everyday life prompted by the global COVID-19 pandemic.

Included: Red Bank’s emergency order; grab ‘n go meals for kids; Catholic Mass dispensations; liquor deliveries; a coffee shop’s open-door policy, and Fair Haven’s next council session.

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RED BANK: STATE OF EMERGENCY DECLARED; SEATING AT BARS & RESTAURANTS BANNED

red bank catch 19 031520Customers gathered outside Catch 19 restaurant on Broad Street Sunday afternoon. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

[See clarification below]

By JOHN T. WARD

this just in redbankgreenRed Bank officials declared a “local state of emergency” Sunday night in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, ordering bars, restaurants and other large facilities to cease operations at the end of the day Monday.

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RED BANK: DISTRICT, CHARTER NOW CLOSED

red bank middle school njRed Bank schools plan to roll out a “home learning” program in lieu of classroom time. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Ending short-lived holdouts, Red Bank’s district and charter schools will be closed Monday as they join the widespread shift to online instruction prompted by the global COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak.

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RED BANK: BOROUGH IN SHUTDOWN MODE

red bank borough hallPublic employees will continue working, but borough hall and other facilities will be closed to the public. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

Public access to Red Bank’s borough government buildings will be halted starting Monday to help mitigate the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

In an announcement posted on the borough website Friday afternoon, the administration said all public employees will continue to work, serving the public by email. telephone and mail.

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