FAIR HAVEN: ACME CENTER TO GET MAKEOVER

fh-acme-center-122216-1Plans call for the creation of a pedestrian passageway linking the north and south parking lots through the former Laird’s Stationery space next door to the existing Post Office. The “salon & spa” sign is for illustration purposes only. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn smallThe owner of the Fair Haven strip mall anchored by an Acme supermarket plans extensive renovations to the site, according to documents filed with the borough last week.

The plans include dividing the former Laird’s Stationery space in two to create a pedestrian breezeway linking the front and rear parking lots. But they leave unanswered questions about whether other longtime tenants might be forced out, as the owners of Laird’s contend they were.

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RUMSON: SAVOURY FARE BIDS GOODBYE

patricia-mink-101116-1Patricia Mink in the kitchen of Savoury Fare on Tuesday. The takeout restaurant will close at the end of the month. (Photo above by John T. Ward, below by Trish Russoniello. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

savoury-fare-101016For 31 years, Savoury Fare has been a go-to for prepared meals in Rumson. And for the past week, its customers have started to get the news that that their backstop for home cooking is closing.

“Oh no, what will we do?” said Marian Wattenbarger of Fair Haven, when she heard the news while ordering quiche Tuesday. “Whenever I don’t feel like cooking, I come to see Pat.”

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FAIR HAVEN: BIKE SHOP CALLING IT QUITS

bike haven 081916Bike Haven will close by the end of September, its owner says. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn smallA second longtime retailer is leaving the Fair Haven Shopping Center.

But unlike Laird’s Stationery, which is temporarily relocating to smaller quarters in the center after getting squeezed out of its home by a steep rent increase, Bike Haven is simply calling it quits, owner Cliff Wittenberg tells redbankgreen. And a rent hike is only the final nail in the tire.

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SANDY HOOK: BACTERIA PROMPTS SWIM BAN

sandy hook 2 052613The closure at Gunnison Beach is the second in the park this season. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

just_in1The nudists may still sunbathe in the altogether, but the surf at Sandy Hook’s clothing-optional Gunnison Beach is off-limits to the clothed and unclothed due to high levels of bacteria, NJ.com reported Tuesday.

 

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FAIR HAVEN: LAIRD’S GETTING SQUEEZED OUT

budnicks brounley 071116Bob and Rose Budnick outside their store with longtime customer Katherine Brounley. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn smallTucked into the corner of a Fair Haven strip mall, marked with minimal signage, Laird’s Stationery is easy to miss if you’re not looking for it. But locals know it, and know it as a jam-packed emporium of not only paper goods and office supplies, but everything from backpacks to wiffle bats.

“The register never stops ringing,” owner Bob Budnick said early this week, as three customers converged at the front desk to pay for their purchases. “This store is woven into the fabric of a lot of people’s lives.”

But the register is about to stop ringing, here at least, and the business may be doomed, said Budnick and his wife.

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SEA BRIGHT: HARRY’S ENDS ERA ON HIGH NOTE

011016harrys4Lynne Perry-Szwede, behind the bar, reminisced with Mary Orr, above, while Feli Donato and Mike Sakowski took a last turn at the pool table at Harry’s Lobster House. (Photos by Susan Ericson. Click to enlarge)

By SUSAN ERICSON

011016harrys2In the end, it was more about the sounds than the food as musicians and music lovers jammed Harry’s Lobster House in Sea Bright Sunday night.

With no specific plans in the near future, longtime owner Lou Jacoubs said he’d decided to retire and close the Ocean Avenue restaurant, which had been in operation for 83 years.

“I’m 65 years old,” he said. “It’s been good, but it’s time to go.”
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RUMSON: INTERSECTION CLOSED

rumson 122715Motorists in Rumson should avoid the intersection of Ridge Road and Bingham Avenue Monday. The intersection will be “completely closed” between 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. as New Jersey Natural Gas begins work replacing a gas main between Bingham and Ward avenues, borough police said in an alert Sunday.  (Photo by Trish Russoniello. Click to enlarge)

 

ON THE GREEN: RIDGE ROAD CLOSURES BEGIN

ridge rd 110515Overnight closures of a stretch of Ridge Road in Fair Haven, Little Silver and Rumson got underway Wednesday night to allow for repaving work.

The closures, from Bingham Avenue to west of Prospect Avenue, are expected to recur over six nights, weather permitting, except for the weekend. Residents who access their homes from the road are being allowed through, according to local police. (Photo by Trish Russoniello. Click to enlarge)

LITTLE SILVER: A&P PETERS OUT

LS A&P 102515LS A&P 102715The shelves of the Little Silver A&P have grown sparse in recent days as the new owner, Acme Supermarkets, plans to shut down the store Saturday night for several days of sprucing up and reopen it on November 4 as an Acme, according to signage.

The Prospect Avenue location was among 72 A&P stores that changed hands in a bankruptcy sale approved in September. The A&P on Shrewsbury Avenue in Tinton Falls was also included. (Photos by Trish Russoniello. Click to enlarge)

 

RUMSON: FROMAGERIE SAYS ‘ADIEU’

fromagerie 100615Customers found the restaurant closed without notice Monday night. Below right, chef David Burke with chef Pat Trama during post-Sandy relief efforts in Sea Bright. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

AmaPatTramaBurkeSB2012Star chef David Burke has closed his Rumson restaurant, Fromagerie.

Callers and visitors to the fine-dining establishment, which Burke acquired nine years ago, were given no reason for the closing in a message posted on the restaurant website Monday.

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CHURN: FEMME OUT, CHIKYBOOM IN

femme show 2 120612Ashley Dupré Earle, center, at a fashion show in her boutique in February, 2012. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn smallThis installment of redbankgreen’s Retail Churn brings news of a lingerie store closing and a coffee shop getting a complete makeover, down to the name.

Ashley (nee Dupré) Earle, owner of Femme by Ashley, at 15 Broad Street, announced in an email to customers Wednesday that she’s closing the four-year-old lingerie and swimwear boutique to focus on raising her two children.

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RED BANK: CINNAMON SNAIL ROLLS TO A STOP

cinnamon snail 061514 2The Cinnamon Snail has been a fixture at the Red Bank Farmers’ Market in recent years. Below, chef Adam Sobel in his mobile kitchen. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

adam-sobelThe Cinnamon Snail, the nationally lauded vegan food truck that calls Red Bank home and is a top draw at the town’s Farmers’ Market, is putting it in park later this month.

Chef Adam Sobel announced in a recent Facebook post that the mobile restaurant, featuring a robust menu “designed to shatter the misconceptions” about vegan cuisine, has failed in repeated efforts to renew its permit to sell on the streets of New York City, its primary location, after it expires on February 28.

As a result, Sobel wrote, the curbside operation will close down at the end of the month, though it could be resurrected as a brick-and-mortar restaurant.

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OVERNIGHT CLOSINGS FOR BRIDGE PLANNED

hubbard  plan 2008A rendering from 2012 shows the new bridge, now under construction, in red, just to the north of the existing span. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

This just in from the Monmouth County engineering department Wednesday afternoon:

Beginning tonight, from 10 p.m. until 4 a.m., the bridge on West Front Street over Swimming River will be closed for the delivery and setting of the beams for the new bridge.

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RED BANK: BELATED GOODBYES TO A DINER

taylor sisters 072214Sisters Sarah and Claire Taylor came to the Broadway Diner from Ocean Township with their mom on Tuesday not knowing it had closed. Below, the diner’s famous buttermilk pancakes are now a memory. (Photos by John T. Ward and Susan Ericson. Click to enlarge)

By SUSAN ERICSON

072214 diner pancakesThe promise of a “Diner Open 24 HRS,” proclaimed in neon, ended in Red Bank Monday morning without an opportunity for fans even to say goodbye.

For 18 years, the Broadway Diner on Monmouth Street was a vital and consistent part of the community, as reflected in the degree to which both staffers and customers felt blindsided by its abrupt closing.

“I am in mourning,” said 18-year-old Colts Neck resident Jess Soden, who came into town with a friend Monday afternoon jonesing for the diner’s waffles, but ended up theatrically curled into a fetal position on its front steps. “They were just so crunchy, yet so fluffy on the inside.”

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RED BANK: DINER TO REOPEN AS TOAST

  bway diner 072114 1“Sorry, closed” is all sign in the door tells patrons of the Broadway Diner, where some 40 workers were shocked to learn they’d lost their jobs Monday. Below, workers emptying out the kitchen. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD & SUSAN ERICSON

bway diner 072114 2Red Bank’s Broadway Diner, which closed abruptly Monday morning, will reopen as Toast Red Bank, according to a report in the Asbury Park Sun.

Following renovations, a reopening is expected in about about eight weeks, the Sun reported, quoting Amy Russo, Toast’s founder and the daughter of one of the diner’s owners.

Russo could not be reached for comment Monday afternoon, and an employee at her Asbury Park restaurant said she would probably not comment.

But the sudden closing in Red Bank stunned customers and employees alike.

“I just found out half an hour ago that I don’t have a job anymore,” an employee told a customer who had asked what she’d do now. “Can you imagine?”
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RED BANK: DINER POURS FINAL CUP

Broadway DinerThe diner will reopen as a new restaurant, an owner says. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank’s Broadway Diner, a gleaming all-night mecca of stainless steel, Formica and neon, has closed.

The Monmouth Street eatery ended an 18-year run owning to the death of one of its owners, Bob Russo, and a restructuring of the business.

By coincidence, Mayor Pasquale Menna and new borough school Superintendent Jared Rumage were the last customers, Menna told redbankgreen.

“We had the last cups of coffee,” he said.

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RED BANK: HAMILTON CLOSING STORE

hamilton 050414The Princeton-based jeweler has had its store at 19 Broad Street since 2003.  (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Rcsm2_010508Hamilton Jewelers is closing its Red Bank store, the company told select customers in a letter last week.

One of a handful of retailers that add high-end sparkle to Broad Street, Hamilton is moving out of 19 Broad Street after failing to come to terms on a new lease, the company said in the letter, signed by President Hank Siegel and Chairman Martin Siegel.

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RED BANK: EVERYTHING MUST GO

rb grauer 110213Rcsm2_010508With a hand truck loaned by neighbor Mona Pollard (center), Red Bank residents Marc Grauer and Nancy Keyes schlepped a sideboard to their Hubbard Park home from the downtown women’s clothing store Emilia, more than half a mile away, on Saturday.

Emilia owner Jessy Krol tells redbankgreen’s Retail Churn that she’s closing her Monmouth Street boutique later this month after just two years because there’s not enough business to justify paying a nearly 30-percent increase in rent. Everything, including the store displays, is for sale. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

RED BANK: GALLERY U CLOSING

Rosemary Bagwell chats with Gallery U manager Bob Langdon at the opening of an exhibit last Friday. Below, a stack of Lisa Bagwell pieces made of container lids. (Photo by Sarah Klepner. Click to enlarge)

By SARAH KLEPNER

Less than three years after opening on Broad Street in Red Bank, the combination art space/consignment shop Gallery U and Boutique is closing.

An offshoot of Universal Institute, a healthcare provider specializing in services for brain-injured clients, the gallery functioned as a training center as well as a display space for visual artists, musicians and poets.

The gallery is relocating next month to Westfield.

“Good for them, bad for Red Bank,” said local photographer and gallery owner Bob McKay. His mother, Dana, has two photos in a show that opened there on Friday.

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FAIR HAVEN: CLOSINGS ROCK RIVER ROAD

Nature’s Emporoium is closing after 40 years in the same location, and will be replaced by a women’s clothing boutique displaced from Sea Bright. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

As though hit by an economic hurricane, Fair Haven’s historic downtown is reeling from the abrupt loss of four well-established River Road retailers.

• Eclectic gift and clothing shop Nature’s Emporium is closing after 40 years. A women’s clothing boutique is expected to take over its space by early spring.

• Gourmet Picnic closed on Monday after a sale, according to a notice posted on the 10-year-old bakery’s front door.

• Eight-year-old Java Stop closed two weeks ago, and its cozy space will be taken over by two-year-old coffee roaster Booskerdoo, in its first expansion from Monmouth Beach.

• Write Impressions, a custom stationery and wedding invitation shop, packed it in after 32 years this weekend and downsized to a corner of a florist shop in Middletown.

Owners of three of the outgoing businesses cited the effects of a seven-month closing of the Oceanic Bridge, ending last May, among the reasons for shutting out the lights.

“There’s just no traffic,” said Write Impressions owner Christine Ancona.

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AFTER 61 YEARS, PHARMACY TO CLOSE

The store’s pharmacy accounts will be transferred to a nearby Rite Aid, and the gift shop will be closed, the owner says. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Professional Pharmacy, a Red Bank fixture for more than six decades, is closing.

Owner Michael Yura tells redbankgreen that the store’s pharmacy accounts have been sold to Rite Aid and will be transferred to the chain’s Red Bank store on Water Street.

Meantime, the store’s extensive gift and greeting card business will be closed, he said

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EURASIAN EATERY CLOSING

Owner Joe Kriete says he’s closing for personal, not economic reasons. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank’s Eurasian Eatery, a mecca for vegetarians and foodies with globe-hopping tastebuds, will close after its final seating on Sunday, owner Joe Kriete tells redbankgreen.

Kriete, who’s owned the 26-year-old restaurant for six years, said he’s in the process of selling the equipment and fixtures to a Peruvian chef from north Jersey, though he’s uncertain if she plans to open a Peruvian restaurant there.

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