RED BANK: FOOD & CLOTHING POWER CHURN

theo 080216Alexander Meder’s women’s clothing store, Theo, opened at 3 East Front Street this week. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn small Two new clothing stores open. A cupcake shop adds a coffee bar as another dessert business prepares to open. One restaurant changes hands while another goes dark. And a longtime barber sweeps up the clippings for the last time.

This edition of redbankgreen‘s Retail Churn finds the usual elevated level of change in the face and character of downtown Red Bank. Read More »

CHURN: EYE CARE, BODY WAX, CLOTHES & MORE

del negro 022116A new eye care practice in Red Bank has taken space formerly occupied by an architecture firm.  (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn smallIn this (long overdue) edition of redbankgreen‘s Retail Churn:

• A new ophthalmology practice and eyewear store has opened on Broad Street.

• So have a body-waxing business and a women’s clothing store.

We’ve also got news on a couple of relocations within town, a couple of pending openings, and a closing — in other words, all the essential ingredients of a Churn cocktail.

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CHURN: HOUSEWARES, TRAP DOOR AND MORE

kathleen conlon 081415 2Kathleen Conlon bought the onetime gas station that’s now Welcome Home, her housewares shop on East Front Street. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn smallThis installment of redbankgreen’s Retail Churn pops in on a new housewares-and-gifts shop in Red Bank.

We’ve also got an update on an escape-themed entertainment “house” planned downtown; the rebranding of Red restaurant; and a planned move by Red Ginger Home.

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RED BANK: ROOF FIRE VEXES CHIEF

rb fire 091814 1Firefighters closed off a portion of Broad Street to fight the blaze. One peered into a wall cavity abutting the roof, below. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

A hard-to-locate rb fire 091814 2fire apparently started by roofers prompted the shutdown of a stretch of Broad Street in Red Bank Thursday afternoon.

Emergency personnel responded to smoke alarms from 50 Broad, home to the A Time to Kiln pottery class shop, and an adjoining building at about 4:10 p.m., said Fire Chief Tommy Welsh.

Volunteer firefighters then spent about an hour on the roof and inside second-floor offices, where they cut into walls in search of the source of hazy smoke, he said.

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BAREFOOT BRIDE FLEES FAIR HAVEN

barefoot-brideWedding gowns line the spacious windows along Monmouth Street. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn smallMayra Perez didn’t get a barefoot-in-the-grass feeling when she bought the Barefoot Bride, then a 40-year-old business, in 2006. None of the neighboring Fair Haven merchants went out of their way to welcome her, she said.

Even after she’d settled into the wedding gown shop, Perez said, she felt isolated. “Fair Haven is just too quiet,” she tells redbankgreen.

By contrast, driving into work every morning through a relatively bustling Red Bank, Perez felt the tug of the familiar. A product of Puerto Rico and the Bronx, where “everybody helped everybody out,” Perez said she sensed her shop was in the wrong place.

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HOME-GOODS TOUR STARS ‘UNSUNG HEROES’

queen-vaccum_9John and Rachel Decker of Queen Vacuum are leading the charge to highlight Red Bank’s daytime attractions this Saturday. (Photo courtesy Fran Waldmann)

By TOM CHESEK

“Red Bank is really diverse — but it sometimes gets pegged as a nightlife town,” says Rachel Decker of Queen Vacuum and Sewing Machine, the long-running Monmouth Street business (formerly Graman’s) that she and her husband John have operated for the better part of the past decade.

“While the restaurants and theaters are really wonderful, as a ‘daytime’ sort of business we felt a little left out, in that what we do didn’t fit in with a lot of RiverCenter’s events and promotions,” she says.

As the young, stylish and energetic NextGen owners of the 50-year-old appliance retailer and servicer (John, a former employee of founder Gene Graman, bought the business in 2003; Rachel came on board full time in 2006), the thirtysomething Tinton Falls couple admits to having been a bit jealous of the parade of dining, shopping and recreational happenings that passed by their shop like trains from the nearby NJ Transit platform.

As a member of the marketing committee for Red Bank RiverCenter, however, Rachel “knew that other businesses in town felt the way we did.” Acknowledging that the way to address the problem was to “be constructive rather than complain,” the former graphic designer took the liberty of “pitching a few ideas at ’em” — and when the dust cleared, she found herself appointed chair of the first-ever Only One Red Bank Home Event, a promotion designed to prepare the home-oriented “unsung retail heroes and service businesses” of Red Bank for their long overdue close-up.

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RED GINGER FINDS A NEW HOME

red-gingerRed Ginger Home is relocating from Monmouth Street to Broad Street at the end of the month. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Rcsm2_010508Five years ago, starting a new business on Broad Street wasn’t the most feasible plan for Rob Amend and Michael Yavorski, on account of the higher rents. So they went to the freshly-completed Noglows Building at 65 Monmouth Street, where they have built a broad client base and even won a few accolades along the way.

It recently came time for Amend and Yavorski to revisit the Broad Street idea. With a little help from stores moving out, an opportunity presented itself for the two to move their furniture and interior design business, Red Ginger Home, down the street.

“The rents are still not great on Broad, but five years ago we were a new business and now we’re established,” Amend said. “Now we feel comfortable expanding.”

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RED BANK STORES SHINE IN MAG’S POLL

downtown-rbA recent view down Broad Street in Red Bank. (Click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

In addition to Democratic bent and hyperlocal news sources, Red Bank and Maplewood can add one more item to the list of things they have in common: garnering the most attention from New Jersey Monthly’s readers in the magazine’s annual “Best of Jersey” poll.

Red Bank businesses came away with three No. 1 votes in the shopping category, but also showed well in other classes and earned a bunch of nods as runners-up. Maplewood, in Essex County, dominated the poll, getting the most votes for six shopping categories.

Overall, Red Bank and the redbankgreen coverage area had a strong presence in the magazine’s feature story this month.

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