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SANDY HOOK: ENTRY FEE HIKE PROPOSED

sandy hook 3 052613The per-car fee would jump to $20, from $15, under the proposed hike. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Beachgoers may have to pay 33 percent more to enter the Gateway National Recreation Area at Sandy Hook next summer.

A proposed fee increase would boost the daily vehicle rate to $20, from the present $15, and the seasonal rate to $100, from $75.

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RFH STUDENTS GET REAL-WORLD EXPERIENCE

rfh peruRumson-Fair Haven juniors Mariah Parsons, Megan Volker, and Abby Drummond are pictured with new friends, during their volunteer stint at an orphanage in Peru.

Press release from Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School

Between October 31 and November 11, two groups of students and chaperones from Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School took a closer look at the culture and languages of two far-off lands — by traveling to China and Peru, as part of World Language Immersion trips organized by RFH faculty member Michel Salazar.

Making the trip to Peru were 30 students and six chaperones – including Salazar, RFH Principal Dr. Tracy Handerhan, and World Language Teachers Christina Gauss, Daniella Goodarz, Seth Herman, and Yannell Maglione. The student contingent included sophomores Juliana Balaban-Kroll, Sebastian Buckley, Julia Handerhan, Brian Incremona Jr., Leo Maita, and Emma Singleton; juniors Abigail Drummond, Olivia Flippo, Julia Gagliano, Giavana Hanna, Mariah Parsons, Emily Ross, Jane Russo, Natalie Santos, Brittany Schmell, Paige Venancio, Isabella Vernon, Megan Volker, and Emily Weis; and seniors Emily Boak, Tess Chandler, Heather Culver, Kelly Danaher, Jordanna Drazin, Maren Gierlatowicz, Meghan O’Connor, Jenna Sandoli, Katherine Sustick, and Christina Tardiff.

RFH students traveling to China included sophomores Jessica Browne, Jenna Hawke, Nicholas Longo, Henry Manelski, Peter Maris, Camryn Pecyno, Lily Perrine, John Presti, Emma Singleton, and Christopher Steinhacker; juniors Katherine Amendola, Amanda Keighron, Julia Klem, Emily Oberlander, Avery Wall, and John Woods III; and seniors Sharon Brownstein, Colin Courchesne, Kevin Gallagher, Willis Manelski, Gabrielle Ramirez, and Isabelle Slavin. The 22 students were accompanied by four chaperones – RFH English Teacher Kathryn Borsuk, Superintendent Dr. Peter Righi, and World Language Teachers Rebecca Wang and Matthew Yang.

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RUMSON ROAD REPAVING SCHEDULED

rumson rd 040415Users of Rumson Road in Rumson and Little Silver should prepare for disruption to their routines starting Wednesday. Monmouth County plans to repave the road between Branch Avenue and Bingham Avenue, a job that is expected to take six days, depending on the cooperation of the weather, according to a notice on the Rumson website. (Photo by Trish Russoniello. Click to enlarge)

RED BANK READY FOR STORM, SAYS DPU HEAD

rb snow 012115 2Plows will roll out of the borough DPU yard on Chestnut Street starting at about 3 a.m. Thursday, says a borough official. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

As recently as Tuesday morning, “we were begging for salt,” Red Bank utilities head Gary Watson tells redbankgreen.

But by the end of the day, his department obtained a load of salt – just enough, Watson expects, to get the town through the snowstorm forecast for Wednesday night into Thursday, when 6 to 10 inches are expected to fall.

“We’re OK for this event,” Watson said Wednesday afternoon, moments after wrapping a meeting at which plowing assignments were given out.

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BLIZZARD: CANCELLATIONS AND SUCH…

riverside 122810 2Scenes from the December 26, 2010 blizzard that paralyzed Red Bank for days. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

We’ll update this post at the top as new cancellations come in.

globe ct 122810• Rumson: No trash collection Tuesday. No school, either. And parks are closed at dusk today.

• Red Bank: The Count Basie Theatre presentation of ‘The Buddy Holly Story,’ scheduled for Tuesday night, has been moved to a matinee performance on Saturday, April 4, 2015 at 3pm. All tickets will be honored.

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RED BANK: RR XING TO CLOSE TWO NIGHTS

rb rr crossing 100614Broad Street at the New Transit grade crossing in Red Bank will be closed to vehicular traffic two night this weekend for track maintenance and repair work. The closings are scheduled from 9 p.m. Friday to 9 a.m. Saturday and again from 8 p.m Saturday through 8 a.m. Sunday, said spokeswoman Nancy Snyder. Motorists should plan alternate routes. Rail travel will not be affected, she said. (Photo by Trish Russoniello. Click to enlarge)

RED BANK: STATION WORK IN FINAL PHASE

rb station 1 050814The long-awaited restoration of the Red Bank train station, named for late mayor and state Supreme Court Justice Dan O’Hern, is on track to wrap up by late August, New Jersey Transit spokeswoman Nancy Snyder said Thursday. Included in the $1.6 million project are the replacement of the slate roof, repairs to the clapboard exterior and historically accurate restoration of windows and gingerbread trim. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

RED BANK: CROSSING WORK DELAYED A BIT

rb rr xing 050814Wet weather has delayed completion of the grade crossing reconstruction at Bridge Avenue and Monmouth Street in Red Bank, New Jersey transit spokeswoman Nancy Snyder said Thursday. The crossing, which has remained in operation for trains since the work began two weeks ago, is expected reopen to motor vehicles by Monday, she said. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

RED BANK: CROSSING TO BE CLOSED 2 WEEKS

rb bridge ave 041014The busy intersection of Bridge Avenue and Monmouth Street in Red Bank will be closed to traffic for about two weeks starting the morning of Thursday, April 24 for replacement of the NJ Transit railroad crossing. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

RFH ANNOUNCES STUDY ABROAD PROGRAMS

RFH ChinaRFH staff and students recently welcomed visitors from Hanzhou Entel Foreign Language School in Hanzhou, China. Pictured from left to right are RFH Chinese Teacher Matthew Yang, RFH Supervisor of World Languages, Visual and Performing Arts, Business, and ESL Michel Salazar, Hanzhou Entel English Teacher Hu Yeubo, RFH Chinese Teacher Rebecca Wang, and Hanzhou Entel Chinese Teacher and Vice Principal Zheng Minfeng.

Press release from Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School

Teachers Hu Yuebo and Zheng Minfeng recently had an unusually long commute to school. They traveled from Hanzhou, China for a week-long visit to Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School.

While at RFH the two observed lessons, interacted with students and teachers, enjoyed dinners in their honor, participated in a bowling event, and even ate lunch in the RFH cafeteria.

“The chicken fingers were highly recommended by the students,” said Yuebo, who teaches English at Hanzhou Entel Foreign Language School, where Minfeng teaches Chinese and is the Vice Principal.

But this visit was about a lot more than chicken fingers. It represented a big step forward for the Study Abroad Program at RFH, which received its official approval by the RFH School Board at a meeting on November 12.

The inaugural study abroad trip for the new language immersion-based program, which took root at the high school in 2007, is planned for April 9-21, 2014.  That is when eleven RFH students will travel with two chaperones to the Hanzhou Entel Foreign Language School in Hanzhou, China.

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TRAIN ACCIDENT VICTIM CHARGED AS THIEF

By JOHN T. WARD

A Middlesex County man who injured his leg when he was struck by a moving train in Red Bank on Sunday has been charged with a theft that occurred earlier that day at the Little Silver train station, police said Wednesday.

Oluwatomiwa Adewusi, 19, of the Avenel section of Woodbridge, is alleged to have been caught on surveillance tape stealing a laptop computer from the Little Silver station, said police Chief Dan Shaffery.

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SEA BRIGHT: SERVICE STATION WON’T RETURN

Dunkin’ Donuts is back in business, at right, but the adjoining Sea Bright Service Station won’t be coming back to town, its owner says. (Photo by Wil Fulton. Click to enlarge)

By WIL FULTON

Amid optimistic declarations that storm-battered Sea Bright will rise from the wreckage of Hurricane Sandy, one of its more visible businesses has quietly thrown in the towel – or the grease rag, in this case.

Sea Bright Service Station owner Rick Hennessey, who’s been operating in recent weeks out of temporary quarters in Atlantic Highlands, has decided not to return to town, he tells redbankgreen.

“The owner of the building doesn’t really want any gas sales there anymore, which is the first problem,” Hennessey said. “We also have the issues of rebuilding after the storm and this looming bridge construction.” Read More »

HARD-HIT SEA BRIGHT FACES BRIDGE OUTAGE

News of the planned closure of the Rumson-Sea Bright Bridge had restaurateur Chris Wood lobbying elected officials for a modification Friday. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Business owners in Hurricane Sandy-walloped Sea Bright were reeling Friday afternoon on word that Monmouth County plans to shut down the Rumson-Sea Bright (Route 520) bridge for up to a month starting as early as January 28.

“It’s cutting off our lifeline as we’re recovering from a massive heart attack,” said Woody’s Ocean Grille owner Chris Wood, who just took delivery of $50,000 worth of liquor and food in preparation for a planned reopening in the desolate downtown next Wednesday.

“We’re just trying to get ourselves back open,” said Frank Bain,  owner of the recently reopened Bain’s Hardware, “and a very large portion of our customer base comes over that bridge.”

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POST-SANDY, A BRIGHTER SEA BRIGHT

After wading waist-deep into churning water on Ocean Avenue during the storm on Monday, photographer Peter Lindner returned to Sea Bright on Saturday, along with redbankgreen‘s John T. Ward, to document the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Here are 150 of Lindner’s shots. Some of Ward’s pix on are redbankgreen‘s Facebook page.

Lindner and Ward were permitted into town by local officials, who were in their second day of ferrying Sea Bright residents into town, by dumptruck, to give them just a few minutes to collect pets, medicines, clothing and other personal items from their homes.

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SEA BRIGHT: THE MORNING AFTER

Woody’s Ocean Grille owner Chris Wood sent us these photos he took in Sea Bright at the first light Tuesday, just hours after Hurricane Sandy all but obliterated the town. From left: the demolished remnants of popular oceanfront bar Donovan’s Reef; Ocean Avenue looking north from downtown; and Ship Ahoy Beach Club. (Click to enlarge)

Town officials said Thursday that Sea Bright would be off-limits to residents and visitors for seven to ten days as crews work to halt natural gas leaks and inspect structures for safety. As for the 14-month-old Woody’s, the owner says the restaurant came through the storm and will be back.

RUMSON ORDERS EVACUATION

There was barely an unused square foot of ground at the Oceanic Marina Sunday afternoon, as all vessels were pulled from the water in advance of the storm. (Click to enlarge)

Though a mandatory evacuation order was in effect as of 4 p.m. Sunday, redbankgreen saw lots of lights and televisions glowing after 8 p.m. in homes along the streets that Rumson authorities warned are in danger of severe flooding as a result of expected storm surges.

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SEA BRIGHT SHUTS DOWN

A motorist stopped at a sign reading “Turn Around Now” at the foot of the Rumson-Sea Bright Bridge around 8:30 p.m. Sunday (Click to enlarge)

With a mandatory evacuation order in effect and a roaring storm expected to put the town “under water,” in the words of Mayor Dina Long, Sea Bright shut itself to the outside world Sunday evening, barring traffic across the two bridges that provide access. From the south, Ocean Avenue was reported to be flooded in Monmouth Beach as a result of ocean water overtopping the sea wall.

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DRIVING JERSEY SERIES RUNS LOW ON FUEL

Filmed in June before a Count Basie Theatre screening of the blockbuster summer hit “Jaws,” the above video is an example of Driving Jersey’s storytelling style. Steve Rogers at work, below.

By DANIELLE TEPPER

In the hands of mainstream media, New Jersey has been not been treated kindly. With shows like Real Housewives and Jersey Shore purporting to offer sneak peeks into the Garden State of mind, residents are rarely seen as they really are, and are instead depicted as “pornographic cartoon characters,” in the words of Red Bank videographer Steve Rogers.

That was the injustice Rogers set out to rectify when he embarked on his Driving Jersey video series in 2007.

After losing a media industry job in New York, Rogers stepped into the roles of writer, producer, and director to start telling true-to-life Jersey stories through raw interviews with real residents. Driving Jersey, he says on the program’s website, “represents and reflects the most misunderstood and misrepresented place and people in all of America.”

Since the show started, Rogers and his partner, Ryan Bott of Manahawkin, have dipped into their own pockets for funding. But now, after four years of creative success, they’re asking for help. Via Kickstarter, they’re hoping to raise $10,000 by November 1.

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NO GREEN LIGHT YET FOR RED-LIGHT CAMS

The intersection of Broad Street and Shrewsbury Avenue is one of two under consideration by borough officials for red-light cameras. (Photo by Rebecca Desfosse. Click to enlarge)

By REBECCA DESFOSSE

Despite lingering questions, Shrewsbury officials have not abandoned their pursuit of traffic cameras that would automatically issue summonses to alleged red-light violators, borough Council President Tom Menapace tells redbankgreen.

While borough officials have been talking for more than a year about installing the controversial devices at two heavily traveled intersections, “we have not made a decision, and we want to look at all sides of the issue before we make a decision,” Menapace said. “There is still a lot up in the air.”

Meanwhile, 12th-district Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon, of Little Silver, continues to rail against red-light cameras, calling a state Department of Transportation pilot program allowing their use in 25 towns “a disaster since it was initiated.”

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SEVEN BRIDGES ROAD DETOURS TO BEGIN

Monmouth County officials were expected to shut down Seven Bridges Road (seen above from Rumson Road) Monday to allow for the $2.7 million reconstruction of a small, timber bridge on Seven Bridges Road just north of the Little Silver Point Road intersection.

The project calls for detours (shown in the map above) that are expected to be in place for up to six months, according the the county engineer’s office. (Click to enlarge)

SURRAY LUGGAGE ON HIATUS?

Surray Luggage has been dark this week, with signs touting an inventory closeout. (Click to enlarge)

Rcsm2_010508

By JOHN T. WARD

Has Surray Luggage gone on a trip?

The Red Bank luggage retailer’s Broad Street store has been dark for a week, with signs hinting vaguely of change.

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LAST STOP FOR TOLLBOOTHS: TINTON FALLS

Decommissioned tollbooths in a yard in Tinton Falls, as photographed by the Star-Ledger’s Robert Sciarrino. (Click to enlarge)

Wednesday’s Star-Ledger has a quirky story about what happens to all those New Jersey Turnpike and Garden State Parkway tollbooths after they’re decommissioned by E-Z Pass technology.

They’re put out to pasture in a yard near the Asbury Toll Plaza in Tinton Falls, the Sledger reports.

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TRAIN RUNOVER VICTIM IDENTIFIED

José Melgar, a 32-year-old Red Bank man, was in Jersey Shore Medical Center in Neptune with a fractured skull and other injuries after he was run over by a train at the borough rail station Sunday night, authorities said Monday morning.

Melgar was reported to have jumped off the platform in front of a northbound train as it was pulling into the station at 9:15 p.m., according to New Jersey Transit spokesman John Durso Jr.

“The train was entering the station, so it was going at a slow rate of speed,” Durso tells redbankgreen.

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