31°F snow


rosa-on-roof-072011Since the recent demise of her Red Bank fashion shop, Bella Mystique, Rosa Davis – famous hereabouts for staging outdoor swimsuit shows featuring local women as models – has picked up work helping Milton Roldan, of R&N Awnings & Canopies in Neptune. And proving that style never takes a day off, Davis turned up on a scorching roof at East Bergen Place and South Street Wednesday in a short, bold dress.

“It’s good advertising,” she tells redbankgreen. “Next, I might try swimwear.” (Click to enlarge)


racioppisAfter 15 years in Red Bank, Racioppi’s Kitchen locked its doors Sunday. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)


The last two years were tough for Joe Racioppi (no relation to this reporter). The last six to eight months in particular, he said, became impossible to weather. rcsm2_0105081

“It got to the point where I just couldn’t make the payments at home,” said Racioppi, who lives in the Navesink section of Middletown. “So it was at the point where I either found another job or got kicked out of my house.”

He chose the former, and on Sunday, months before the 16th anniversary of Racioppi’s Kitchen, Racioppi turned off the lights and locked the doors of his Italian deli and restaurant for the last time.

“It sucks,” he said. “It’s kind of depressing, but on the other hand, it’s kind of relieving.”

Racioppi’s is just one of a handful of businesses making an exit from Red Bank in recent weeks.

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Red Bank nightclub Fixx was the scene for the Red Carpet Fashion show last Thursday night, hosted by downtown boutique Bella Mystique.

Lensman Peter Lindner was there for redbankgreen to get a fix on the runway action, which saw 46 models strutting the latest in men’s and women’s styling, including footwear from White Street’s Rare Breed.

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A crowd that spilled over onto the Monmouth Street sidewalk packed the courtyard of the Dublin House Pub Wednesday night for the second alfresco fashion show held there in three months.

Like the last one, held in April, this one was organized by Rosa Davis of Bella Mystique on Broad Street. It also again featured amateur models from in and around Red Bank, and was supported by local hairdressers, modeling advisors and makeup artists. A series of raffles raised money for Lunch Break, the soup kitchen on the West Side.

But even with the parochial slant, the event had the frisson and throb of its more urbane counterparts. redbankgreen photog Peter Lindner was there with his gear to capture it all in pixels.

To enlarge the photo display, start it, then click the embiggen symbol in the lower right corner. To get back to redbankgreen, hit your escape key.


sinead-dunneSinead Dunne models a swimsuit that will be featured in the show. Below, Ruthie Chaparra in a kimono-style dress. (Click to enlarge)


Somehow, little old Red Bank survived its first century-plus of existence without an outdoor fashion show featuring skimpily clad amateur models.

Rosa Davis of Bella Mystique filled that cultural void with panache on a chilly night back in April. That’s when several dozen customers of her Broad Street boutique strutted a red carpet laid down outside the Dublin House on Monmouth Street.

The place was packed, the music was throbbing, and there was enough jiggle in the courtyard to boost the ambient temperature by a couple of degrees.

So why wait another century to do it again? Even if the temperatures are now tropical quality.

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Putting their customers and friends to work, Rosa and Liam Davis of womens’ casualwear shop Bella Mystique brought downtown Red Bank its first open-air fashion show in memory Tuesday night.

The event, held in the courtyard of the Dublin House on Monmouth Street, featured several dozen amateur models — high school students, a bank teller, a toy store employee, a radiology lab worker and others — in dazzling spring and summer outfits.

redbankgreen was there, from start to finish, making full use of its all-access pass to document the show both on the runway and backstage.

To enlarge the photo display, start it, then click the embiggen symbol in the lower right corner. To get back to redbankgreen, hit your escape key.


bella-mystique-2-042210Some of the women who will be modeling clothes from Bella Mystique gathered at the store recently. Store own Rosa Davis is at center in the tall boots. (Photos by Anthony Trufolo; click to enlarge)

Downtown Red Bank will be the scene of its first open-air fashion show in recent memory next Tuesday evening.

This one is shaping up as an all-local affair, featuring the clothing of a Broad Street boutique (Bella Mystique), amateur models recruited from the store’s customers, a runway set up at a Monmouth Street bar/restaurant (the Dublin House) and other in-town touches.

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