RED BANK: TENNIS FANS MUSTER FOR COURTS

rb tennis 111015 2The tennis courts, overgrown with weeds since being swamped by Hurricane Sandy three years ago, got a sprucing-up from the borough last week. (Photo by Trish Russoniello. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03As expected, the Red Bank council derailed an ambitious plan for $3.5 million worth of private development on the site of the borough-owned red clay tennis courts in Marine Park Monday night.

Still, a roomful of frustrated tennis enthusiasts packed the council chambers, many of them holding paper signs urging the council to now restore the hurricane-damaged riverfront courts to playability.

Read More »

RED BANK: MARINE PARK PROJECTS NIXED

rb tennis 081915 2The clay tennis courts at Marine Park as seen in August. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03All three private-sector proposals for the future of Red Bank’s hurricane-damaged Marine Park clay tennis courts should be rejected, a triumverate of borough council members is expected to say in a report next week.

The recommendation to the full council is being made in spite of the fact that one pitch, by startup Jetsun Enterprises, was far and away the winner on paper. But in the court of public opinion, it was over the line, Councilwoman Linda Schwabenbauer told redbankgreen on Monday.

Read More »

RED BANK: BURNHAM BLASTS PARK DELAY

rb tennis 081915 2The clay tennis courts at Marine Park as seen last month. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Five months after three proposals were submitted, the Red Bank council has yet to receive a recommendation on the future of the hurricane-damaged Marine Park clay tennis courts, and may not get one before election day.

That has Republican Councilwoman Cindy Burnham — who redbankgreen has learned was chastised behind closed doors by her colleagues for saying too much about the issue — ramping up her complaints that there’s something “fishy” going on.

Read More »

RED BANK: A PAWS FOR A BUSY PET PHOTOG

Kim LevinLittle Silver-based pet photographer and author Kim Levin visits Red Bank’s Galleria Sunday for a book signing session to benefit the Save US Pets Foundation.

Animal lovers and book lovers from all around the greater Red Bank Green know Kim Levin as the Little Silver-based picture-book creator (and self-described “phoDOGrapher”) whose many book bylines include Cattitude and Why We Love Dogs. Her images have appeared worldwide on everything from calendars to cocktail napkins; in People magazine and Modern Dog; and on her own line of Molly & Fig greeting cards and gift items.

The professional purr/pooch portraitist — who in 2014 documented her travels across Iditarod country in a Monmouth County Library exhibit entitled Alaska: Landscapes and Dogs from the Last Frontier — is back on her home turf, doing what she does best, and finding time Sunday afternoon to “paws” in Red Bank for an appearance keyed to one of her pet causes.

Read More »

RED BANK: COUNCIL GIRDS FOR POSSIBLE SUIT

rb tennis 081915 1The clay tennis courts at Marine Park as seen last month, above. Below, an architect’s depiction of the proposed Red Bank Harbor plan. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

red bank harbor 3 041515Red Bank’s mayor and council held a closed-door meeting Wednesday night to discuss potential litigation over the process that could lead to a makeover of the hurricane-damaged clay tennis courts in Marine Park.

Mayor Pasquale Menna told redbankgreen shortly beforehand that the topics to be discussed by the governing body in executive session included “possible litigation” concerning the tennis court site, though he declined to be more specific.

Read More »

RED BANK: A WALK OF FAME FOR LOCAL MUTTS

dog days 072215 1All Dogs Go to Hollywood  as Red Bank RiverCenter presents the latest of its canine-friendly Dog Days events Tuesday evening.

RB DOG DAYS 073013 6At a time of year when Hollywood separates its summer blockbusters from its disappointing box-office dogs, the Tinseltown-canine connection is being celebrated in style on the streets of Red Bank, as the latest in the summer series of Dog Days promotions returns on Tuesday evening.

Hosted once again by Red Bank RiverCenter and the Borough of Red Bank, the 6-to-9 p.m. event is presented under the theme All Dogs Go to Hollywood, with a strolling array of dog-focused vendors, pup-positive downtown businesses and informational displays given a red-carpet twist: guest-star canines (and their human personal assistants) are invited to dress up and walk that carpet for a free photo op worthy of a big-time movie premiere, fun props included.

Read More »

RED BANK: JETSUN DEFENDS PROPOSAL

red bank harbor 1 041515A rendering by architect Mike Simpson of the Red Bank Harbor proposal, as seen from the horseshoe marina at Marine Park. Below, Jetsun principals Doug Booton, Michael Hernandez and Anthony Jude Setaro at the Red Bank Mayor’s Charity Ball in May. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

jetsuns 050115Jetsun Enterprises is not proposing a “Coney Island” in Marine Park, the startup developer said Tuesday night, in response to criticism by Red Bank Councilman Mike DuPont and comments posted on redbankgreen.

“Comparing our proposal to any large theme park such as Coney Island or Seaside is both illogical and irresponsible,” Jetsun said in a press release. “We are offering small recreational activities for families, not building rollercoasters and ferris wheels. We are extending the existing promenade, not constructing a boardwalk.” Read More »

RED BANK: DUPONT ZAPS JETSUN PROPOSAL

rb tennis 060614 2The red clay courts, idled since Hurricane Sandy, as seen from the Monmouth Boat Club next door. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Red Bank Councilman Mike DuPont has signaled he will oppose a proposal for a privately owned recreational center on the site of the borough’s riverfront tennis courts in Marine Park.

Calling the proposal, by Jetsun Enterprises, “10 pounds of potatoes in a 5 pound bag,” DuPont wrote in a letter that it “puts every imaginable use down at Marine Park with the exception of not having a ferris wheel” and could turn Red Bank into “Coney Island South.”

Read More »

RED BANK: ACTION EXPECTED ON COURT PLANS

rb tennis 042515 2HOT-TOPIC_03Wondering about the fate of Red Bank’s clay tennis courts in Marine Park, and whether they’ll be saved or replaced by either of two competing proposals to develop the waterfront site?

After nearly two months of silence, the borough parks and rec committee is expected to discuss the issue Monday night, when it could issue its non-binding recommendation to a trio of council members – Linda Schwabenbauer, Kathy Horgan and Ed Zipprich.

The councilmembers, in turn, are expected to meet Tuesday night in a closed session to “score” three proposals, one of which calls for keeping the courts, according to criteria set out in bids. They’ll also weigh comments made at a public forum held in May and afterward, said Schwabenbauer, who expects the committee to make a recommendation to the full governing body by the end of August, she said Wednesday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

 

RED BANK: GET OUT AND STAY OUT

Motor CityLayonne Holmes (right) and the Motor City Revue roar into Sandy Hook as the up-next act in the summer beach concert series. Weather permitting, Tuesday night marks the twice-scheduled debut of Red Bank’s Dog Days of Summer.

rb dogs 061714 6[UPDATE, July 20, 2 p.m. Once again, the Dog Days event is being postponed, this time because of high temperatures, RiverCenter announced. The event is tentatively scheduled to be held Wednesday, July 22, at 6 p.m.]

Gripe all you will about summer traffic, summer crowds, summer expenses: the season for warm-weather diversion can seem especially fleeting when viewed through the frosted panes of our extended polar-vortex winters. And between Tuesday evening and Thursday afternoon, we’ve got a whole range of excuses for getting out of the house, beginning with the latest in the 2015 series of Red Bank Dog Days of Summer .

Read More »

RED BANK: EVERY DOG HAS ITS NIGHT

081914 rbdogs4Canine visitors and their human handlers are invited to paws and relax when Red Bank Dog Days return for a new season Tuesday evening.

061714 dogs12[UPDATE: This event has been postponed to June 23 because of adverse weather forecasts.]

The interval known as the “dog days of summer” doesn’t occur until early July — and in fact, summer itself doesn’t officially begin until June 21. But in Red Bank, pet pooches and human handlers can get a leg up on the competition during the first in a new season of Dog Day evenings on Tuesday, June 16.

Presented by Red Bank RiverCenter and the borough of Red Bank on the third Tuesday of each summer month, the series takes place on Monmouth Street, which will be partially closed to vehicular traffic between the hours of 6 to 9 p.m.

Read More »

RED BANK: TENNIS COURT IDEAS VOLLEYED

jetsun 2 052815  An exhibit showed the layout of the Jetsun proposal superimposed an aerial view of the park. Below, MPAC principals Phil Flego, Gayle Horvath and Sandy Talarico make their pitch. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

mpac 1 052815What should be done with the hurricane-damaged red clay tennis courts at Red Bank’s riverfront Marine Park?

For almost three hours Thursday night, area residents offered opinions and teased out details of three formal proposals: one that calls for restoring the courts with a $500,000 donation by a Locust resident, and two that envision real estate development of river-oriented activity centers.

Each had its advocates and opponents, and none appeared to have won the hearts of all 120 people in attendance.

Read More »

RED BANK PUTTING COURT PLANS INTO PLAY

rb tennis 042515 4The courts haven’t been playable since they were swamped by the Navesink River during Hurricane Sandy in October, 2012. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Three proposals for the future of Red Bank’s red clay tennis courts in Marine Park are scheduled for public airing later this month.

The borough council will hold a special meeting on Thursday, May 28, at the Red Bank Middle School for presentations of the three plans. Two of them include ambitious real estate development and river-oriented activities, while the third aims to keep the site as a tennis facility.

Read More »

LINCROFT: NEW LEASH ON MCSPCA EVENT

WagTyronneAbbyDoodleMiddletown band the Wag takes the air, and canine aerialists Tyronne and Abbydoodle take a curtain call, as the Monmouth SPCA’s Dog Walk and Pet Fair returns to the Brookdale campus for its 21st edition.

It’s one of the most eagerly anticipated early-autumn events on the greater Red Bank Green — repositioned, for the second year, as a middle-of-spring event. Returning for its 21st edition on Saturday, the annual Monmouth County SPCA Dog Walk and Pet Fair commandeers the campus of Brookdale Community College for a colorful five-hour festival (10 am – 3 pm).

Co-sponsored by Red Bank Veterinary Hospital, the fundraising walk is simply the centerpiece of a slate of activities for adults, kids and canines, highlighted by vendor booths, adoption and microchip clinics, 50/50 drawing, food, face painting, doggie agility ring, “pupparazzi” photos, “cutest tricks” contest and even a “Canine PUPtials” wedding chapel. There’s live entertainment as well — including the return of a faithful favorite act, and what promises to be the final Dog Walk appearance by one of the most crowdpleasing acts on the pet-fair circuit.

Read More »

RED BANK: CLASSIC BOATHOUSE PROPOSED

MPAC rendering 041515A rendering of the proposed Marine Park Activity Center shows the existing Monmouth Boat Club at right. (Rendering by Katie Osepchuk. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03One of three proposed plans for the reuse Red Bank’s dormant clay tennis courts calls for the construction of a classic boathouse topped by a catering hall on the Navesink River in Marine Park.

The project, dubbed the Marine Park Activity Center, reflects the traditional river-oriented focus of two groups –  Navesink River Rowing club and the Navesink Maritime Heritage Association – anchored by a structure similar to boathouses in West Windsor and Camden, its proponents said.

redbankgreen detailed another of the three plans, called Red Bank Harbor, on Wednesday. The third proposal consists solely of an individual’s offer to donate $500,000 to the borough for the restoration of the site as a red-clay tennis facility, redbankgreen has learned.

Read More »

RED BANK: RIVERFRONT REC CENTER PROPOSED

red bank harbor 1 041515Renderings of the proposed Red Bank Harbor plan filed with the borough government on Wednesday. The horseshoe-shaped borough marina is in the foreground above. (Drawings by S.O.M.E. Architects. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

red bank harbor 2 041515Vastly eclipsing the concept of a mere dog run, a startup development firm has proposed the creation of a privately funded, $3.5 million recreation facility on the site of Red Bank’s borough-owned red clay tennis courts in Marine Park, redbankgreen has learned.

Dubbed Red Bank Harbor, the plan drafted by Jetsun Enterprises and filed at borough hall on Wednesday calls for the creation of an enclosed visitors’ center along with an 18-hole miniature golf course, a synthetic ice rink, a boathouse for rental of paddleboats and kayaks, and a concession stand in the park, which fronts on the Navesink River.

Read More »

RED BANK: TENNIS COURTS? YOUR SERVE.

rb tennis 061414Do you have an idea and viable plan for the use of Red Bank’s 74-year-old red-clay tennis courts?

The riverfront facility in Marine Park, out of action since it was wrecked by Hurricane Sandy, are the subject of a request for proposals released Thursday. So far, talk has included restoration of the courts, turning at least two of the courts into a dog run, and a wholesale repurposing of the site as a multiuse, water-oriented recreation facility.

The deadline for submissions is 10 a.m. on April 15. Here’s the 165-page submission packet: RB RFP 032015. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

 

RUMSON: IN COMMUNION WITH THE ANIMALS

rumson dog mass 031415 1rumson dog mass 031415Mass celebrants weren’t all equally attentive to Reverend Ophelia Laughlin at a pets-welcome worship at St. George’s-by-the-River in Rumson Saturday. About two dozen dogs, and a hamster named Hamstie, at right, attended the new regular service, which the church plans to repeat  on the second Saturday of each month at 5 p.m. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

 

RED BANK: CABS, KIDS, COPS & DOGS

rb k9 031115 2Mayor Pasquale Menna offers an official welcome to the RBPD K9 unit of Hunter, a 21-month-old Belgian Malinois, and his handler, Patrolman Stan Balmer. Below, an image used in a presentation on the Bellhaven spray park last August. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

rb spray park 081314Wednesday night’s bimonthly meeting of the Red Bank council included attention to taxicabs, a controversial proposal for Bellhaven Natural Area, lifesaving cops and a four-legged borough employee.

Details just around the corner…

Read More »

RED BANK: PROPOSED LAW EYES DOG NEGLECT

rb dogs 061714 14The ordinance, championed by Mayor Pasquale Menna, below, addresses tethering of dogs and other issues. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

pasquale menna 052614Red Bank Mayor Pasquale Menna wants to put more teeth into the borough’s protection of dogs.

The mayor, whose canine companion of 14 years died last month, introduced a proposed ordinance Wednesday night that he said would make it easier to prosecute those who neglect dogs by leaving them tied up for hours, or with heavy tethers, or when the weather is “extraordinarily cold or extraordinarily warm.”

Read More »

RED BANK: TENNIS COURTS MAY GET BOUNCED

RB TENNIS CTS 020715 1The courts, which adjoin the privately owned Monmouth Boat Club, center, haven’t been playable since Hurricane Sandy. Below, the principals of Jetsun Enterprises – Anthony Jude Setaro, Michael Hernandez and Doug Booton – want to develop the site for new recreational uses. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

jetsun 022315Red Bank’s 74-year-old red-clay tennis courts, out of action since they were damaged by Hurricane Sandy 28 months ago, may be turned into a dog run, at least short-term.

Longer-term, a trio of thirty-something locals hopes to transform the courts, which overlook the Navesink River from Marine Park, into a multiuse recreational facility that would, they say, put money into the town’s coffers.

Either way, the courts may have seen their last volley of tennis.

Read More »

RED BANK: DOGS, TENNIS & POLICING

RB DOG DAYS 073013 20Having held a Dog Days of Summer monthly event for two summers in a row, borough officials are now contemplating a year-round facility for dogs to play in. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

Should Red Bank establish a place for dogs to play? And if so, where?

And what should become of the borough’s red-clay tennis courts in Marine Park?

Those are among the questions on the table at a meeting scheduled for next week.

Another meeting, scheduled for later this week, concerns crime and community relations.

Read More »

RUMSON: PETS WELCOME AT CHURCH SERVICE

100514 beast blessing11Reverend Ophelia Laughlin blesses a dog at St. George’s-by-the-River’s annual St. Francis Day event last October. (Photo by Susan Ericson. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

StGeorgeThe Vatican may be fuzzy on whether animals get into heaven, but an Episcopal church in Rumson says they’re certainly welcome at services.

St. George’s-by-the-River will start offering a monthly worship next month at which all pets are welcome, associate pastor Reverend Jeff Roy tells redbankgreen.

Read More »

SHREWSBURY: SAY CHEESE… AND MUSH!

kim_levin_photoImages of Alaska — and of the people and dogs who call it home — are on display at a reception for Little Silver lenswoman Kim Levin.

Animal lovers and book lovers from the greater Red Bank Green may already know Kim Levin as the Little Silver-based picture-book creator and self-styled “phoDOGrapher” whose many publication credits include Cattitude and Why We Love Dogs — and whose images have appeared worldwide on everything from calendars to cocktail napkins; in People magazine and Modern Dog; and on her own line of Molly & Fig greeting cards and gift items.

Back in June, the pet portraitist had the chance to indulge another passion, and spent her summer vacation traveling through Alaska, Vancouver and the Yukon. What she brought back were some stunning images of the Alaskan landscape, its people, and their state treasure: the iconic Huskies that run the 1,049-mile Iditarod race each winter.

Read More »