By JOHN T. WARD
Red Bank library staff and patrons held a sendoff party last week for the retirement of director Elizabeth McDermott, seen above speaking with public utilities director Cliff Keen.
Monmouth County Freeholder John Curley, a former Red Bank councilman, presented McDermott with a county proclamation recognizing her for, among other accomplishments, leading the library through the most turbulent period in its 81-year history.
By JOHN T. WARD
Elizabeth McDermott, who guided the Red Bank Public Library through perhaps the most turbulent chapter of its 81-year history, will retire at the end of June.
An ex-software industry consultant who changed careers well into adulthood, McDermott announced her retirement in the spring issue of the library’s newsletter, out this week.
Last we caught up with her in the pixelated pages of redbankgreen, the busy screen actor and Rumson resident Siobhan Fallon Hogan brought us up to date on a pair of exciting new projects — the M. Night Shyamalan-produced sci-fi TV series Wayward Pines (the third season of which begins filming in spring 2017), and her second self-penned solo stage show, a multi-character tour de farce entitled Acting Out.
The annual End of Summer Party (above) marks a big-tent bid of adieu for the Sandy Hook Foundation next Friday…while NFL great Boomer Esiason (below) visits Broad Street for a cocktail party fundraiser at Garmany.
A late-summer sendoff out on the Hook…a BBQ kickoff to the gridiron season on the home-team turf…a star-studded celebration of life and fashion at a signature retailer…and a show of support for a hometown resource. All dedicated to raising funds for worthy causes, and all happening in the post-Labor Day interlude to come.
This coming Labor Day Monday, September 5 represents the deadline to reserve your ringside seat for the End of Summer — as declared by the nonprofit Sandy Hook Foundation in its annual casual-attire outdoor benefit gala, which returns on September 9 to the North Beach area of the Hook for a seasonal sayonara that commences at 6:30 pm. With tickets beginning at $150, proceeds benefit the Foundation’s ongoing preservation efforts as well as seasonal activities like the popular Free Beach Concert series, in addition to the environmental awareness and educational campaigns of the Fort Hancock-based American Littoral Society. Promised are “dancing under the stars” to live music from Swift Technique; a buffet dinner featuring seafood raw bar furnished by The Lusty Lobster, and an “amazing auction” of exclusive-experience getaway packages. Take it here for further details; here for tickets, and around the bend for more good deeds and good times.
It’s a journey that begins in a little place called Saluda, Virginia (population 300), a road trip through physical and spiritual territory that’s limited only by our own storytelling abilities and available Gas Money.
In his book of that title, first-time author Troy Lewis delivers what his promo material calls “a heartwarming, honest narrative that shows how everyday people with whom we come in contact on a daily or occasional basis shape our lives forever.”
Sea Bright United Methodist is the place to be this weekend for the official dedication of the relocated Sea Bright Public Library on Saturday, plus a Christmas Cantata and free community dinner on Sunday.
Even as the people of Sea Bright got to work putting their beloved borough back together in the wake of Superstorm Sandy, the loss of the town’s permanent public library continued to leave a hole in the heart of community life.
While the library’s circa-1976 J.W. Ross Cultural Arts Center building — razed amid some controversy in early 2014, as reported here on redbankgreen — sustained relatively light damage in comparison to other hard-hit neighboring structures, the decision was made to temporarily relocate rather than restore. This past summer saw the “small, friendly” Sea Bright Library open its doors inside the host walls of United Methodist Church at 1104 Ocean Avenue — and this Saturday, the borough officially cuts the ribbon, in an all-welcome event that boasts a bonus helping of seasonal cheer.
The Red Bank Public Library is conducting a survey to help shape a strategic plan and the future of the institution. Input is welcome from frequent users, occasional visitors and even though who’ve never stepped inside the West Front Street facility. The survey, available in English and Spanish, is available here.
By JOHN T. WARD
Smith’s comment came after more than two hours of discussion over the role of librarians – media specialists, in contemporary terms – and a recommendation by Superintendent Carolyn Kossack that the posts give way in the coming school year to other priorities. Namely, the teaching of so-called STEM subjects: science, technology, engineering and math.
By JOHN T. WARD
Superintendent Carolyn Kossack told parents and teachers in an April 2 letter that the two-school district had decided to eliminate the positions of media specialists at the Markham Place and Point Road school libraries and replace them with Science, Technology Engineering & Math (STEM) teachers.
A second-floor reading room at the Red Bank Public Library is the setting for this Saturday’s River Read poetry-‘n-whatnot jam. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)
In true hermit crab fashion, it’s a native offering that’s skittered from venue to venue around town – with past homes having included the Dublin House Pub, No Joe’s Café and the now-defunct Frank Talk on Shrewsbury Avenue.
But when the poetry event known as River Read: Words by the Navesink sets up shop this Saturday morning at the Red Bank Public Library, it will mark a welcome return for the monthly series that was unfortunately evicted from that riverview roost when the library was temporarily forced to cancel its Saturday programming.
Workers from the digital archiving company DRS Group roll up old plats on the floor of the planning and zoning office in Red Bank Wednesday afternoon for transfer to a scanning facility in Springfield. At right, Ricardo Peetes rides down in the elevator at borough hall with a palette load of documents.
As part of a digitization project, the minutes of planning and zoning board applications dating back to 1929 – minus a decade’s worth from the 1950s that are believed to have been destroyed in a fire – are being scanned and transferred to both digital files and microfilm, says office director Donna Smith-Barr. Once that’s complete, the borough will apply to the state for permission to destroy the hundreds of site plans, architects’ renderings and other large pieces used as evidence in hearings, she said. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)
By SUSAN ERICSON
“It was so surreal. I felt like it was part of a movie scene. There were men in kilts and bagpipes,” says Debbie Bagnell.
A self-described cooking-and-crafting hobbyist and homemaker says, Bagnell was recalling the day her Irish Soda Bread won first place at Oceanic Public Library‘s first annual baking competition in Rumson.
The win was a bit flukey.
“I had no intention of entering,” she said. “I had never baked an Irish Soda Bread before.”