OH, BABY, ANOTHER TODDLIN’ WEEKEND

A video promo for ‘The Electric Baby,’ which opens tonight at the Two River Theater. Author and motivational speaker Selwyn Collins, below, makes an appearance at the Red Bank Public Library on Saturday.

By ALEXIS ORLACCHIO

Friday, April 19:

LINCROFT:  Presented by Make it Better for Youth and the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Monmouth County, “Breaking the Silence, Celebrating Our Voices” concludes the “Day of Silence,” a national student-led action in honor of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender students and their families and friends taking a stand against bullying, harassment, abuse and more. Performances by Kailynn Barbour, poet, blogger and 2012 recipient of the Lionel Cuffie Award for Activism and Excellence, and the New Jersey Gay Men’s Chorus begin at 7 p.m. 1475 West Front Street.

RED BANK:  “The Electric Baby” births at Two River Theatre.  The drama follows three different pairs – a middle-aged couple, ahopelessly devoted lover and the apple of her eye, and a Romanian mother and Nigerian father caring for their child – who discover the ways in which their lives are connected.  The play, by Stefanie Zadravec, runs through May 5. Tickets are $24-$42 and the show begins at 8 p.m. 21 Bridge Avenue.

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RED BANK: BRIDAL SURGE REPORTED

Once again, brides-to-be, accompanied by female attendants and the occasional fiancé, flooded the streets of Red Bank for the annual Wedding Walk extravaganza Sunday. The RiverCenter-orchestrated event highlights goods and services available in town, from banquet halls to photo framing.

Among the hundreds of participants was Alyssa Hopkins of Piscataway, who said she came away with “lots of ideas” for her big day and was delighted to find a shop that would rent table lanterns for her wedding reception, sparing her a costly purchase. “What am I going to do with 200 lanterns?” she said. (Click the embiggen symbol to enlarge the photo display.)

RED BANK: A PRE-AISLE BRIDAL STROLL

A bride-to-be and her entourage pass a begowned model at Barbizon School of Modeling at the 2012 edition of Wedding Walk, above, and the trolley that makes the walk a bit less, um, pedestrian. (Click to enlarge)

Having hit on a good thing, Red Bank turns into Bridesville once again Sunday, swapping the green of last weekend’s Saint Patrick’s Day for miles of satiny white.

The occasion is Wedding Walk, and the idea is promote the town’s dozens of wedding-related vendors – caterers, liveries, photographers and more – as a one-stop fulfillment center for every bride-to-be’s Big Day needs.

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WEDDING PHOTOGS SNAP UP MORE SPACE

John Arcara in the reception area of his spacious new photo studio. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Rcsm2_010508In retailing, where rents are steep and space is priced by the square foot, every one of them has to count toward the top line.

Or so goes one school of thinking. Another says there needs to be room for atmosphere and mood to stir and stoke the consumerist impulse. For that matter, not every retail tenant has to be selling something tangible.

Wedding and boudoir photographers John and Lovina Arcara have joined a recent resurgence in Red Bank: tenants of primo storefront space selling nothing more than memories.

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RUMSON TEEN’S STORM VIDEO DRAWS TRAIN

A 33-minute video about Hurricane Sandy by a Rumson-Fair Haven Regional student caught the attention of the rock band Train, which will play an acoustic show in Sea Bright as a result, NJ.com reported Wednesday.

Sixteen-year-old Charlotte Nagy videotaped conditions in Sea Bright and Rumson before, during and after the October 29 storm, and folded the band’s music into her production. Now, the San Francisco-based band is planning to play a private show for residents, first responders and their families next week, with the performance to be aired on on VH1 Christmas Day, the website of the Star-Ledger reports.

The effort will spotlight the efforts of Sea Bright Rising, a nonprofit devoted to the general recovery of the town of Sea Bright and care for its residents in the interim.

From the story:

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ART WALK STIRS RED BANK’S CULTURAL BLOOD

For Saturday’s Art Walk, McKay Imaging, above, offered a mix of photos and paintings. Below, rock photographer Mark Weiss was the star of a show hosted by Frame to Please in the Galleria.  (Photos by Dan Natale. Click to enlarge)

By DAN NATALE

Artists and art connoisseurs walked and trolleyed the cold streets of Red Bank Saturday night as they explored 11 galleries and several dining locations for the latest edition of Art Walk.

“A gift of art is a gift from the heart” was the event’s tag line, and based on the responses of attendees, it seemed the event offered pieces at affordable prices while raising the level of appreciation for the culture the town cultivates.

“It’s great to have the art walk so people can see the different kinds of art available,” said Pat Corboy, an artist with work available at Frame to Please in the Galleria. “You can buy it and not be a multimillionaire.”

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A FALL BOUNTY OF GALLERY SHOWS

The Red Bank Holiday Art Walk takes to the streets once more on November 24. Norman Rockwell protege Peter Caras, right, joins some formidable colleagues this Saturday at Middletown Arts Center.

When Hurricane Sandy threw the entire Jersey Shore into a Dark Ages interlude of blackouts, curfews, detours, closings and major transportation issues, nearly every scheduled event this side of Thanksgiving was forced to take a step back.

But according to gallery curator Robert Langdon, rumors of the postponement of this month’s Red Bank Art Walk have been greatly exaggerated. In fact the November 24 re-appearance of the pavement-pounding promenade represents a resource that can help the borough “recapture its vibrance, especially after the recent devastation Monmouth County suffered from Hurricane Sandy,” he said in an email to redbankgreen.

Taking place on from 5 to 9 pm onNational Small Business Day, the holiday edition of the recently revived art walk brings together some 20 borough-based galleries, upscale retailers, restaurants and places of worship for a four hour, self-guided walking tour organized under the theme “A Gift of Art is a Gift of the Heart.” Langdon’s Gallery U (where the group show Cornucopia opens with a 6 to 9 pm reception on Friday, November 23) joins with such traditional (and non-traditional) artspaces as the Art Alliance of Monmouth County, Beacon Fine Arts Gallery, Frame to Please, Studio 25, Gallery 135 at the Red Bank Community Church (the second-story “storefront” house of worship in the Prown’s building on Monmouth Street), Jamian’s Food and Drink, as well as Garmany, Amy Manor Interior Design and several other art-friendly venues. Street maps (featuring the participating Art Walk locations plus recommended places to dine) will be made available to those who stroll and/or roll — and there’s even a trolley shuttle service running between the various locations.

The virtual art walk continues in and around the greater Red Bank Green this weekend, with a special event in Middletown (rescheduled from the bleak beginning days of November), as well as ongoing exhibits in Shrewsbury, Lincroft, Little Silver and downtown Red Bank…

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WHERE HAVE I SEEN THIS?

Readers Jenn Woods, Pat Noble and Trish DePonti correctly identified the store interior lit in hot pink and purple shown in last week’s Where Have I Seen This?

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STREET FAIR SIGNALS SUMMER’S END

Scenes from Sunday’s Street Fair in Red Bank. (Photos by Stacie Fanelli. Click to enlarge)

By DANIELLE TEPPER

Sunday’s balmy mid-70s temperatures brought locals out in droves to experience the eclectic collection displayed at the Red Bank Street Fair.

The annual event offers residents and visitors six hours of live music and 200 stands of crafts, clothing and flavorful foods – most of which have been dipped into a vat of frying oil.

This year was no different. Broad Street and Monmouth Street were overrun with excited kids in strollers, happy dogs on leashes, and adults of all ages eager to give the summer a proper send-off.

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STOLEN LAPTOP HELD CHERISHED PHOTOS

Shakira Johnson with her son, Jakir, earlier this week. (Click to enlarge)

By DANIELLE TEPPER

Unlike most parents, Red Bank resident Shakira Johnson does not have the luxury of flipping through old photographs and looking back on her son’s toddler years.

She cannot hold them in her hands and reminisce about his first Christmas, or his seventh birthday party. That quintessential shot of a smile missing two front teeth is likewise missing from her life.

She is a mother who has lost all her photos – twice. And she is asking for help to get back those that she can.

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WEDDING WALKERS TO STROLL RED BANK

Matt DePonti of Powerhouse Signworks gets the word about Wedding Walk out above Broad Street last week. (Click to enlarge)

Here come the brides-to-be again, as Red Bank merchants reprise an idea that’s turned into one of the more popular recurring draws of shoppers and diners.

As with the first three editions of this shopping extravaganza, merchants of everything from formalwear to framing, from rehearsal-dinner restaurant meals to riverfront hotel suites will open their doors on Saturday to an expected swarm of soon-to-be-marrieds hoping to nail down details of their big day.

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LIBRARY TO FETE LIFE OF SIGMUND EISNER

Local-history librarian Elizabeth McDermott, below, with a custom-branded Eisner lightbulb in the second-floor New Jersey Room of the Red Bank Public Library, once the home of industrialist Sigmund Eisner. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

On April 15, 1937, the Red Bank Public Library – for decades an itinerant but growing collection of books and archival material – finally found a permanent home, relocating from a downtown storefront to a mansion at 84 West Front Street.

Three months earlier, the heirs of Sigmund Eisner – mass-manufacturer of uniforms for the Army, the Boy Scouts and other organizations  – had donated their late father’s mansion overlooking the Navesink River to the library.

The shared hope of H. Raymond, Monroe and J. Lester Eisner was that the house would provide a warm and dry place for reading, but also that it would function “as a bit of a museum, too,” says local-history librarian Elizabeth McDermott.

Next month, the library will celebrate its 75th anniversary in the house with museum-like displays that highlight Eisner and his transformative impact on Red Bank as an industrialist and philanthropist.

The event, says McDermott, “is completely about” Eisner.

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BACK TO THE ARCHIVE

Stumbling on this scene in downtown Red Bank Monday night was like a trip back into the not-too-distant reaches of the redbankgreen archive, as Chris LoBue of CLB Photography shot photos of Jim Caroll’s Back to the Future car for an ad for Ken Kalada’s Yestercades – three businesses that have been featured in these pixelated pages in recent months. (Click to enlarge)

OLD KISLIN’S SPACE TO GET PORTRAIT STUDIO

One-third of the ground-floor at 8 East Front Street has been leased to Kramer Portraits. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Four months after LoBoudoir Photography sexed-up a long-vacant Red Bank space, the former Kislin’s sporting goods store diagonally across East Front Street is also about to get a photo studio.

Kramer Portraits, which for the past 10 years has occupied a narrow storefront next door to the Jade Garden take-out Chinese place on Broad Street, plans to relocate to 8 East Front next month, studio manager Ed O’Malley tells redbankgreen‘s Retail Churn.

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POSTERS GIVE ‘TWEENS’ THE STAR TREATMENT

Debbie Mishan, below, with the hundreds of entries from girls seeking to be featured in posters hung each month at her Fair Haven boutique, Skye Blue & BeTween. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

The oversized, constantly changing photos of well-dressed young models you may have noticed in the window of Skye Blue & BeTween in Fair Haven aren’t stock images provided by clothing manufacturers.

They’re the store’s ‘tween customers, girls aged 13 to 16, the age “just before they start shopping at Urban Outfitters,” says shop owner Debbie Mishan. And a spot in the boutique’s frames has become one of the hottest tickets among adolescent girls on the Green – and a marketing boon for Mishan and a local photographer.

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SEASON OPENER

It’s a full-on sight-and-sound spectacular: the annual night-after-Thanksgiving Santa Claus train ride into Red Bank followed by the parade to Broad Street, the downtown light-up and the Holiday Express concert.

For the 18th consecutive year, it was all once again best experienced perched on dad’s shoulders while wearing a funny hat.

redbankgreen photographer Peter Lindner was there. Were you?

RED BANK: SEXING UP WEDDINGS

21-e-front-glassLast tenanted by chic furniture dealer Design Front, 21 East Front Street is now home to a wedding and boudoir photo business as well as a DJ. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn smallVacant for more than two years, a high-profile storefront in downtown Red Bank has landed a small co-op of wedding-related businesses as tenants.

This is not, however, where your grandma went to have her engagement portrait taken. And when the curtains are drawn across the glass-fronted space, you can be sure something sexy is happening inside.

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PICTURES FOR SQUARES

sqsq-1

jat-petersonFraming shop/gallery Frame to Please in the Galleria at Red Bank hosted an opening reception Thursday night for “SQ + SQ x 2,” a collection of square photos by students of Laury Egan of Highlands.

The shooters were asked to see in squares and double squares to underscore the benefits of tight cropping, which Egan says makes images “more muscular, more exciting.”

The show runs through November 13, and some of the sale proceeds benefit the Monmouth County Historical Association.

OYSTERFEST: WORTH THE EXTRA WEEK’S WAIT

The second annual Red Bank Guinness Oyster Festival, delayed a week by rain that never came, roared into in town on Sunday  under classic autumn conditions: cool, partly sunny and heartily festive.

Twenty-five Red Bank restaurants supplied culinary delights such as lobster rolls, seafood chowder, corned-beef sandwiches, bacon-topped cupcakes and, of course, Guinness and oysters by the boatload for thousands of visitors to the White Street municipal lot.

redbankgreen was there, natch. Were you? Look for yourself and your friends in our photos.

A FAIR DAY TO STROLL THE STREETS

Red Bank’s annual Street Fair drew early-autumn skies – plus an orchestra, lots of crafts makers, the Socialist Party, food vendors and a whole slew of home-improvement contractors – to Broad and Monmouth streets Sunday.

redbankgreen was there, camera in hand. Were you?

NUDES IN SHREWSBURY!

nudes-shrewsburyForgive us the sensational headline, but come on: how often do we get to pair nakedness with the sleepy little burg of Shrewsbury?

Thanks for the big giggle to reader Kim Widener, who snapped this shot outside the Talbot’s store at the Grove at Shrewsbury Wednesday morning. (Click to enlarge)

A VIEW FROM THE BRIDGE

nyc-skylinePuffy clouds lingered after several days of rain, but the view of Sandy Hook and the Manhattan skyline from the Route 36 bridge over the Shrewsbury River was unimpeded Tuesday afternoon.

Wednesday’s forecast by the National Weather Service calls for ample sunshine and temperatures peaking around 84, but rain may return Thursday and Friday. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi. Click to enlarge)