VIRUS UPDATE: SANDY HOOK REOPENING MAY 9

sandy hookA  pedestrian and biking trail at Sandy Hook. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Gateway National Recreation Area at Sandy Hook will be partially reopened May 9, the National Park Service announced late Friday.

While group gatherings and swimming will be prohibited, visitors can use the park to fish, kayak, run, hike and bike – if they arrive before a 50-percent capacity limit is reached, that is.

Read More »

SANDY HOOK: ZERO WASTE, MAX FAMILY FUN

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.

Read More »

RUMSON STUDENT HEADS TO STATE GEO BEE

Peter_O'ConnorPress release from Rumson School District

To fish in Lake Winnipesaukee and ski near Franconia Notch, you would travel to which state? Sea kayakers can explore hundreds of islands off the Dalmatian coast of which European country? The Forbidden City where the Chinese emperors lived is located within what present-day city?

These are among the questions that have been asked of middle school students competing in Geographic Bees at schools throughout New Jersey — and for the second consecutive year, Rumson student Peter O’Connor has been crowned the Geographic Bee champion at Forrestdale School. The 7th grader, son of Joe and Margot O’Connor, has been notified by the National Geographic Society that he will be eligible to compete as a semifinalist in the 2016 New Jersey National Geographic State Bee, to be held Friday, April 1 at the Tohill Theater on the campus of Rowan University in Glassboro.

Peter has also qualified for the New York Regional Finals of the National History Bee, which takes place on April 2. He independently took an online test for that competition, and in late January found out he qualified.  In 2015, Peter won the New York Regional Final, then went to Louisville, KY for the National Finals and finished in the top 30 in the country.

Read More »

FT. HANCOCK COMMITTEE NOMINEES SOUGHT

The National Park Service is seeking nominations for individuals to be considered for appointment to the Gateway National Recreation Area Fort Hancock 21st Century Advisory Committee.

“Since Hurricane Sandy, this committee has helped the park define practical, long-term solutions for preserving Fort Hancock,” said Gateway Superintendent Jennifer T. Nersesian. “A recent Request for Expressions of Interest brought hundreds of possible new leaseholders to the park and generated over 40 written responses. Now the committee is advising the park on an upcoming Request for Proposals, which we expect to issue later this year. We need to keep the committee at full membership so that we can keep this momentum going.”

Since its first meeting in January 2013, the Committee has advised Gateway National Recreation Area concerning the future of the Fort Hancock and Sandy Hook Proving Ground National Historical Landmark. More than 100 historic buildings dating from the U.S. Army era are located within Gateway’s Sandy Hook Unit. Most are vacant, but could be saved through adaptive reuse by other leaseholders.

Read More »