Robert De Niro in ‘The Comedian,’ screening in a Thursday sneak-preview fundraiser at Red Bank’s Bow Tie Cinemas.

It’s the latest entry in a series that’s offered a first look at features by Woody Allen and Francis Ford Coppola. And this Thursday, audiences here on the Greater Red Bank Green have an opportunity to catch Robert De Niro in The Comedian one day prior to its going wide on screens from coast to coast.

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art-alliance-classThe Art Alliance on Monmouth Street is one of 15 Red Bank area nonprofit entities named as grantees in the Monmouth Arts 2017 ArtHelps program.

Press release from Monmouth County Arts Council

Some two dozen arts groups in Monmouth County — 15 of them based in Red Bank and surrounding communities — have been named by Monmouth Arts as the recipients of their ArtHelps Local Arts Program Grant Awards for Fiscal Year 2017.

Designed to help Monmouth Arts meet its mission to enrich the community by inspiring and fostering the arts, the grants will result in over 3,000 high quality, low cost art events (art exhibitions, concerts, dance, theater, film and festivals) estimated to reach over 800,000 people. The 24 awarded grants totaled $94,500, including $3,500 in mini-grants that will be awarded during the year for smaller arts projects by organizations including new and emerging groups.

The awards were presented at a networking meeting held at House of Independents in Asbury Park on September 21, an event during which Monmouth Arts premiered their new website, and special guest Michael Pilla of Pilla Creative Marketing spoke on building your audience with email marketing and Facebook ads.

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Dip a toe into the first wave of “zero waste” art…stick a finger into the winds of environmental activism…try one’s hand at any of the many recreational pursuits of coastal life as Local Summer continues apace on and near the ocean, bay and riverfront shores of our local parks.

The people at the Monmouth County Arts Council define “zero waste” art as that which uses all available materials; creating new objects of beauty and inspiration from formerly discarded castoffs — and when the first-ever Zero Waste Arts Fest comes to the Fort Hancock area of Sandy Hook this weekend, September 17 and 18, there won’t be a wasted moment or a wasted opportunity for family-friendly fun. Going on from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. both days, the festival highlights partnerships between locally based artists, art galleries and environmental activism organizations, as well as an interactive “live art” project coordinated by Lisa Bagwell (whose recycled-materials sculptures are a colorful and clever commentary on our disposable consumer culture). There’s live music (from Red Bank’s Rockit Live and others), kids’ activities, informative displays from a host of partner organizations, plus giveaways, shuttle bus tours of the Hook, and a whole lot more (including an after-hours Saturday night “1940s swing event” under the stars). Take it here to the All Good section of redbankgreen, for full details on events and entertainers, plus a complete rundown of participating co-sponsors and presenters.

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Lisa Bagwell PizzaRecycled-materials sculptures by Lisa Bagwell are among the art works featured during the Zero Waste Arts Fest, going on September 17 and 18 at Fort Hancock on Sandy Hook.

Press release from Monmouth County Arts Council

On Saturday, September 17 and Sunday, September 18, the Monmouth County Arts Council invites the public to take part in a weekend of free family fun — in which the arts intersect with the wonders of our local environment — during the inaugural Zero Waste Arts Fest (ZWAF).

Going on from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the historic Fort Hancock area of Sandy Hook, ZWAF represents a partnership  between Monmouth Arts and Gateway National Recreation Area Sandy Hook Unit. The event also marks the culminating phase of a larger Gateway to the Arts grant project, a $20,000 award that Monmouth Arts received from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) in 2016, to honor both the 50th anniversary of the NEA and the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service.

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Press release from Monmouth County Arts Council

Mary Eileen FourattAfter 19 years at the Monmouth County Arts Council — 17 of them as Executive Director —Mary Eileen Fouratt (pictured right) will be stepping down to take a position with the New Jersey State Council on the Arts. Fouratt, who first served as Community Arts Director in 1997, became Executive Director in 1999 when the Monmouth County Arts Council and Count Basie Theatre separated into two nonprofit entities.

Fouratt’s tenure has seen unprecedented growth for Monmouth Arts, including the development of the award-winning Monmouth County Arts Plan “Envision, Imagine, Create,” and the MoCo Arts Corridor, a creative placemaking and marketing initiative. She led the MCAC’s response to Hurricane Sandy, ArtHelps, and under her leadership Monmouth Arts has received a Citation of Excellence from the New Jersey State Council every year since 2006.

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Still from "The Hollars", 2014, Director: John KrasinskiActor-director John Krasinski  pushes a pregnant Anna Kendrick in ‘The Hollars,’ screening in a Thursday sneak-preview fundraiser at Red Bank’s Bow Tie Cinemas.

In addition to helping make downtown Red Bank a Milk Dud mecca for first-run independent/”arthouse” feature films, White Street’s Bow Tie Cinemas (and its predecessor, Clearview Cinemas) has done duty as official host venue for an attraction all our own: a series of sneak-preview screening events, spotlighting festival-favorite indies before they go into general release.

Part of a long-running partnership between the borough-based Monmouth County Arts Council and Sony Pictures Classics (the major distributor whose president, Tom Bernard, makes his home in Middletown), the sneak-peek series has offered Red Bank-area audiences a first look at works from veteran auteurs (Woody Allen, Francis Ford Coppola) and first-timers alike.

This Thursday, it’s “roll ’em” once more, with a 7:30 p.m. showing of “The Hollars,” a comedy-drama directed by (and starring) a familiar face from the workplace.

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JOY AND BLESSINGS 30x48 acrylic by A.Margulies“Joys and Blessings” by Annette Margulies (above) is among the works on display in “Embracing Change,” opening Thursday at the Oyster Point Hotel. MaryAnn Goodwin, whose “End of Season” is below, is one of two local painters spotlighted in a show at the Monmouth Arts Council

end-of-season maryann goodwinIt’s an installation that reunites a quartet of local female artists for the seventh consecutive year, but when Annette Margulies, Tyrrell Masse, Edy Ottesen and Leona Tenebruso-Shultes convene once more Thursday evening at Red Bank’s Oyster Point Hotel, it will be all about “Embracing Change.”

Debuting with a public-welcome reception between 7 and 9 p.m. — and staying up on the walls and walkways of the riverfront hotel’s lobby and atrium through late August — the exhibit of paintings is the latest offering from curator Gerda Liebmann, the Swiss-born multimedia specialist who coordinates the ongoing series of art installations at the riverfront hotel.

It’s also one of several art events going on in and around Red Bank in the days ahead; take it around the corner for more.

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rb station 112514 1The Red Bank train station, named for late Mayor Dan O’Hern Sr., is among the stops for a walk-and-shoot photography outing tonight.  (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

It’s a late-spring evening’s stroll that takes in some of Red Bank’s most cherished architectural treasures — St. James Church, the Victorian-style train station — as well as the vistas available from the waterfront walkways of Riverside Gardens and Marine Park.

The latest in a new series of “MoCo Artwalks” hosted by the folks at the Monmouth County Arts Council, the Red Bank Photowalk sets sail tonight on a tour designed to give shutterbugs of all experience levels a new perspective on some familiar turf, as guided by Michael S. Miller of Visions Photographic Workshops.

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calpulli2The dancers and musicians of Mariachi y Calpulli Mexican Dance Company perform at the Count Basie on Cinco de Mayo, capping Thursday’s MoCo ArtWalk experience in Red Bank.

MoCo-Walking-TourIt’s being billed as the first in a new series of “MoCo Artwalks,” and hosted by the folks at the Monmouth County Arts Council and designed to give arts aficionados a strolling/rolling and altogether unique perspective on some fascinating goings- on in and around the MoCo (Monmouth County) Arts Corridor — a scintillating strip of station stops along the Matawan-to-Manasquan stretch of the North Jersey Coast Line.

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GuildThe co-chairs of The Guild of Creative Art in Shrewsbury are among the individuals and organizations recognized by the Monmouth County Arts Council for their contributions to arts education, during a May 9 ceremony.

Press release from Monmouth County Arts Council

Each May, as the school year comes to a close, The Monmouth County Arts Council recognizes outstanding arts educators, arts organizations and arts advocates who support our mission of enriching the community by inspiring and fostering the arts in Monmouth County.

Sponsored by OceanFirst Foundation, the annual Arts Education Awards and Showcase will be held on Monday, May 9, and will be hosted at the award-winning, state-of-the-art facility of the Middletown Arts Center.

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jbj-soul-kitchen-101911-500x375Press release from Art Alliance of Monmouth County

The weekend of May 14 and 15 is going to be beautiful, no matter what the weather. On that Saturday and Sunday, all Monmouth County residents and visitors are invited to take part in the Empty Bowls Project, a joint fundraiser to benefit the JBJ Soul Kitchen and the Art Alliance of Monmouth County, in collaboration with Monmouth County Arts Council’s Teen Arts Festival.

The event will take place in the organic gardens of Soul Kitchen at 207 Monmouth Street, Red Bank. Participants make a donation of $20 and receive a “pay it forward” coupon. Their coupon entitles them to select one of the hundreds of beautiful handmade bowls, and will help to feed an in-need person at the Soul Kitchen and benefit the Art Alliance. May 14 hours are 1 to 5 p.m.; May 15 hours are 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

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I Saw the LightBritish actor Tom Hiddleston plays country music immortal Hank Williams in I SAW THE LIGHT, screening in a Thursday sneak-preview fundraiser at Red Bank’s Bow Tie Cinemas.

Beginning Thursday night, and continuing in monthly installments through Spring 2016, downtown Red Bank’s Bow Tie Cinemas is once again the scene for a set of feature film premieres.

Not the red-carpet, “who-are-you-wearing” variety, mind you, but still, a series of sneak-preview screenings that positions the Greater Red Bank Green as a go-to destination for talked-about indies from such major festivals as Sundance, Tribeca and Cannes.

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Press release from Monmoth County Arts Council

8cb44e05-02fd-413a-903f-4acfa7b97e7dFor its annual Celebration of the Arts fundraiser, the Red Bank-based Monmouth County Arts Council celebrates the recently established MoCo Arts Corridor initiative — and honors a trio of dedicated individuals from around the greater Red Bank Green — in an event presented under the banner “The Arts Mean Business.”

Scheduled for Friday, October 23 at Edgewater Beach & Cabana Club in Sea Bright, the 7-10 pm occasion features a silent auction, cocktails, hors d’oeuvres and buffet dinner, all enhanced by performances and exhibits spotlighting the work of several Monmouth County artists — and all dedicated to the ongoing support of such MCAC programs as the Teen Arts Festival, ArtHelps, and the Arts Education Awards.

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artallianceThree not-for-profit Red Bank institutions — including The Art Alliance (above) and JBJ Soul Kitchen (below) — join forces on August 30, during a special event aimed at battling hunger and building community partnerships.

JBJEvery bowl feeds a soul….and on Sunday, August 30, several Red Bank-based nonprofit entities will pool their resources and energies for a joint fundraiser will be held in the garden of JBJ Soul Kitchen at 207 Monmouth Street.

Taking place from 11 am to 3 pm, the special event is designed to raise awareness in the fight to end hunger and support the missions of Soul Kitchen and The Art Alliance of Monmouth County in building community partnerships.

Part of the collective endeavor known as The Empty Bowl Project, the fundraiser will present a display of handcrafted artisanal bowls, with a $20 donation granting the purchaser a “paid forward card” which will help feed a person in need at Soul Kitchen. Light refreshments will be served for the duration of the event.

A follow-up event will be held inside the Art Alliance gallery at 33 Monmouth Street, during the season-opening art exhibit and reception on the evening of September 12. A sampling of the bowls may be viewed in the gallery windows at the Art Alliance through the month of August.

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van zandtMiddletown’s own “Little” Steven Van Zandt — photographed outside the Count Basie Theatre in 2008 — is one of the inaugural recipients of the Basie’s Vanguard Awards, honoring lifelong devotion to the arts in New Jersey. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

When the students of Rockit! at the Basie take the famous stage of the Count Basie Theatre on Friday for their annual summer concert, A Tribute to Woodstock and The Age of Aquarius, they’ll be sharing the boards with a genuine Rock and Roll Hall of Famer — Middletown’s own contribution to E Street history (and King of Most Media) Steven Van Zandt.

The musician, arranger, producer, actor, writer, director, human rights activist, and international radio DJ will be taking time out from his myriad of projects to accept one of the Basie’s inaugural Vanguard Awards, honoring lifelong devotion to the arts in New Jersey. He’ll be joining his wife Maureen Van Zandt, Monmouth County Freeholder Lillian Burry and Monmouth County Arts Council executive director Mary Eileen Fouratt during a ceremony at the August 22 event.

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van zandtSteve Van Zandt, seen here outside the Count Basie Theatre in 2008, is one of the inaugural recipients of the Basie’s Vanguard Awards honoring lifelong devotion to the arts in New Jersey. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

Press release from Count Basie Theatre

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame musician and actor Steven Van Zandt and his wife Maureen Van Zandt, Monmouth County Freeholder Lillian Burry and Monmouth County Arts Council executive director Mary Eileen Fouratt were named as the recipients of the Count Basie Theatre‘s inaugural Vanguard Awards, honoring lifelong devotion to the arts in New Jersey. The first class of Vanguards will be honored during an event at the Basie on Friday, August 22.

Also that evening, Rockit! at the Basie will present its annual summer concert, A Tribute to Woodstock and The Age of Aquarius. The show will feature curation and input from Mr. Van Zandt himself, and monies raised from the concert will go towards future Rockit! scholarships, the theatre’s bus-in program offering area districts and students a low-cost option to experience the theatre’s cultural programming, and for professional development sessions associated with Mr. Van Zandt’s Rock and Roll: An American Story program.

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A Sovereign Bank branch on Route 35 in Middletown was robbed late Friday, police said.

Detective Lieutenant Steve Dollinger said authorities are searching for a white man in his late 20s or early 30s, weighs about 150 pounds and is between five-foot-six and five-foot-eight inches tall.

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Today’s edition of Red Bank oRBit welcomes the Newark Black Film Festival back to Monmouth County — while bidding a bittersweet buh-bye to the person who’s been most instrumental in making it happen here for the past three years.


We’ve long known Terri Thomas (right) as a driving force behind the nonprofit Black Box Asbury Park group, and in particular the annual Women’s Arts Festival it’s been staging each year. For four years now, pretty much anyone involved in the local arts scene has identified this actress/ activist/ advocate/ editor/ opera singer as Community Arts Director for the Red Bank-based Monmouth County Arts Council. When we got word that Terri will be leaving the Shore for Eugene, Oregon at month’s end, we just had to look her up for an informal interview on her future plans, as well as the State of the Arts in the post-Terri era.

Also today, an appreciation of one of the Shore’s quirkiest crannies of creative energy — the Shore Institute of the Contemporary Arts, and its founding father Douglas Ferrari. We’ve got a look back at last week’s big Fifth Anniversary party for SICA, as well as a look ahead to this weekend’s opening reception at the former cannery turned uncanny ideas factory. It’s all here, suitable for framing and on view ’round the clock in Red Bank oRBit!