RED BANK: BROADWALK BEGINS EXTRA MONTH

Temporary barriers at the south end of Broadwalk last week. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njOriginally slated to end its second season this week, Red Bank’s ‘Broadwalk‘ begins a one-month extension Friday.

But while Red Bank RiverCenter and many business owners say the mid-street, car-free promenade has succeeded in attracting customers over 18 months of pandemic, others say it has hurt them.

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RED BANK: RALLY DEMANDS VAX/MASK CHOICE

Marchers gathered on the sidewalk outside Riverview Medical Center Monday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njAbout 150 proponents of “choice” regarding COVID-19 vaccines and masks protested outside Riverview Medical Center in Red Bank early Monday afternoon.

The midday protest followed a rally in Riverside Gardens Park, where god, the U.S. Constitution and the Second Amendment were also invoked.

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LITTLE SILVER: O’SCANLON DEMANDS APOLOGY

State Senator Declan O’Scanlon in Red Bank in May. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03New Jersey state Senator Declan O’Scanlon accused Twitter of “Orwellian” behavior after the social media giant banned him over a three-week-old tweet Saturday.

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RED BANK: COFFEE SHOP JAZZES UP CORNER

A customer checks her email at one of the new seating areas at Coffee Corral. (Photo by Chris Ern. Click to enlarge.)

By CHRIS ERN

It’s a warm summer night as Jessica Olszewski relaxes in an Adirondack chair while her wife and young daughter dance to live jazz under glimmering lights outside the Coffee Corral in in Red Bank.

A new, post-pandemic vibe has captured the attention of locals at the busy corner of Shrewsbury Avenue and Drs. James Parker Boulevard. There, owners Courtlyn Crosson and Erich Reulbach have developed their business into what Reulbach said is now “more than just a coffee shop on the corner.”

“It’s family-friendly. I have my wife and daughter here, and she’s able to run around and enjoy the live music,” says Olszewski, of Tinton Falls. “It’s a lot of what we couldn’t do for so long.”

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RED BANK: CAR SHOW MARKS EVENT REVIVAL

After a year up on blocks due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Doc Holiday Classic Car Show returned to Red Bank’s White Street parking lot Sunday.

With 270 vehicles on display and hundreds of car lovers admiring them, the event marked the return of large-scale public events following months of restrictions on gatherings. It was also the first in the lot since a makeover of the parking facility, which also hosts major spring-and-fall food festivals per year. One, the Guinness Oyster Festival, is scheduled to return September 26.

The car show, a scholarship fundraiser named for a late fire chief, is hosted by volunteer firefighters from the borough’s Liberty Hose company. Check out additional photos below. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

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FAIR HAVEN: COUNCIL TO MEET IN-PERSON

A view of the Fair Haven council chamber in 2017. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

After 15 months of meeting via technology, the Fair Haven mayor and council plan to enter the post-pandemic era with an in-person meeting Monday night.

On the agenda: honors for three Eagle Scouts; a ban on cannabis businesses; discussion of 5G telecommunications and more.

Here’s the full agenda. The meeting is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. at borough hall, 748 River Road.

RED BANK: WHAT’S ON COUNCIL AGENDA

red bank east side lots 040820The East Side parking lots would get a makeover under an engineering contract on the agenda. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njThe Red Bank council has some weighty spending and hiring matters on its agenda when it meets this week.

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FAIR HAVEN: FIREMEN’S FAIR BACK ON TRACK

The fair will return in August, said Councilman Mike McCue. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

The summer-ending food-and-fun extravaganza known as the Fair Haven Firemen’s Fair will return in August, borough Councilman Mike McCue said Monday night.

That sparkler of news, another sign of the waning COVID-19 pandemic, came amid council action on the budget, cannabis, waterfront property and more.

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RED BANK: BROADWALK DRIVING RECOVERY

Broadwalk bars vehicular traffic to enable restaurant expansions into Broad Street between Front and White Streets. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njWith the second season of Red Bank’s Broadwalk about to begin in earnest – weather permitting – downtown merchants say the pedestrian dining and shopping concept is doing what it’s intended to do: improving their receipts.

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RED BANK: WHAT’S ON AGENDA, AND NOT

red bank saxum 176 riverside aveA rendering of Saxum Real Estate’s approved but not-yet-built plan for 176 Riverside Avenue. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njA controversial plan to job out Red Bank’s in-house animal control service is expected to be tabled Wednesday night.

Here’s what’s on the agenda for the semimonthly meeting of the mayor and council.

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FAIR HAVEN: COUNCIL HIGHLIGHTS

Closed since early in the pandemic, Fair Haven’s borough hall and library will reopen June 7, administrator says. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

A new council member, a call for budget cuts, a planned reopening of borough hall and a pandemic ponytail were among the topics at what might have been the last Fair Haven council meeting of the pandemic Monday night.

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RED BANK: WHAT’S ON COUNCIL AGENDA

red bank hackensack merdian chapin 042520An amendment to the parking ordinance would ban parking on the west side of Chapin Avenue, seen at left above. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njThe semimonthly session of the Red Bank council Wednesday night includes a police retirement and some hires, as well as a parking ban.

It also includes approval of a settlement in a type of tax appeal case that enraged commercial landlords two years ago.

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RED BANK: WHAT’S ON COUNCIL AGENDA

The council meets via Zoom due to pandemic restrictions. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njThe creation of a commission to examine Red Bank’s century-old government structure is on the table when the council holds its monthly workshop session Wednesday night.

So are renovations to the mothballed Senior Center and the swan song of Business Administrator Ziad Shehady.

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RED BANK: LIBRARY REOPENS, WITH LIMITS

Make an appointment, show up and ring the doorbell for admission. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

Easing its way out of the pandemic of 2020-2021, the Red Bank Public Library began allowing visitors into the West Front Street institution for the first time in more than a year Monday.

The new reality, however, requires appointments, masks, limits on usage and self-checkouts, among other limitations.

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VIRUS UPDATES: STATE VAX TOTAL TOPS 6M

Governor Phil Murphy thanked VNA healthcare providers during a tour of the Red Bank YMCA Friday. (Photo by  John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

hot topic red bank nj

By JOHN T. WARD

New Jersey’s COVID-19 vaccine program has now administered more than 6 million doses since it began December 15, Governor Phil Murphy said Monday. Read More »

RED BANK: COUNCIL MAY REOPEN VNA PLAN

176 riverside red bank saxumThe former Visiting Nurse Association site on Riverside Avenue. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank officials may soon revisit development approvals for the former Visiting Nurse Association property on Riverside Avenue, following a process kicked off Wednesday night.

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RED BANK: GARMANY LOSES COVID-19 LAWSUIT

Garmany sued its insurer over pandemic-related losses. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njUpscale Red Bank clothing retailer Garmany lost a federal lawsuit Thursday in which it sought insurance reimbursements for pandemic-related losses.

Those losses, it argued, were caused by Governor Phil Murphy’s shutdown of the state’s economy a year ago, and not the COVID-19 virus itself.

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RED BANK: CENTER BACKERS RALLY AGAIN

Marian Quinn of Manor Drive speaking at the rally. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njInvoking “demolition by neglect” and the prospect of “apartments” on the site, several dozen Red Bankers rallied Saturday to demand that the mothballed borough Senior Center be repaired.

They also momentarily drowned out the grandson of the center’s founder when he took issue with one of the handmade signs posted on the building.

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RED BANK: OFFICIALS EYE $1.18M INFUSION

red bank broad street 032720Downtown Red Bank was nearly empty on a Friday night last March as pandemic restrictions on economic and social activity took effect. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

hot topic red bank njRed Bank’s government will receive a direct infusion of nearly $1.18 million under the $1.9 trillion pandemic recovery bill passed by Congress earlier in the day, officials said Wednesday night.

The funds will enable the borough to begin filling its own budgetary holes while providing aid to renters, small businesses and local non-profits, said an elated Mayor Pasquale Menna.

But one item it can’t be used on, contrary to the suggestion of a council candidate, is repairing the shuttered Senior Center, according to two officials.

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VIRUS UPDATE: MONMOUTH DEATHS TOP 1,300

More than 90 individuals braved a cold rain for COVID-19 vaccinations at Pilgrim Baptist Church in Red Bank February 27. (Photo courtesy of Pilgrim Baptist Church. Click to enlarge.)

hot topic red bank nj

By JOHN T. WARD

New Jersey averaged 65 COVID-19 deaths per day over the past year, Governor Phil Murphy said Wednesday, as he noted the one-year anniversary of the first.

In that time, Monmouth County has lost more than 1,300 residents to a pandemic now being battled with a trio of vaccines. Read More »