RED BANK: COFFEE CORRAL PLAN OK’D

An exhibit used in the Coffee Corral hearing illustrates the placement of the new building, which would on Shrewsbury Avenue at the corner of Drs. James Parker Boulevard. The existing shop would be used for roasting beans. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank’s Coffee Corral won approval for an ambitious West Side building plan Monday.

The borough planning board gave a unanimous OK for owners Courtlyn Crosson and her father, business founder Russ Crosson, to transform vacant land at the corner of Shrewsbury Avenue and Drs. James Parker Boulevard into a new home for the coffee shop, plus an adjoining restaurant.

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RED BANK: COFFEE CORRAL LOOKS TO EXPAND

Coffee Corral owner Courtlyn Crosson hopes to build a new, larger coffee shop, and a separate deli, on the empty lot at the corner of Shrewsbury Avenue and Drs. James Parker Boulevard. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Six years after it opened in a tiny West Side construction office, Red Bank’s Coffee Corral is rarin’ for bigger pastures.

Owners Courtlyn Crosson and her father, business founder Russ Crosson, are scheduled to go before the borough planning board next month with an ambitious plan to transform the corner of Shrewsbury Avenue and Drs. James Parker Boulevard into a new home to the coffee shop, plus an adjoining restaurant.

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COOL INSIDE: SUMMER FLOATS AWAY

TOAST_082816A Root Beer Float from Toast City Diner. (Photo by Sherri Hall. Click to enlarge.)

By SHERRI HALL

toast 082716Is it really over already? No! Say it isn’t so!

As the summer of 2016 fades into history, it is with great reluctance that PieHole‘s Cool Inside series closes out (sniff!) with a simple classic: a root beer float.

It’s the 15th entry in the series that has served up everything from a waffle bowl to an egg cream, with lots of variety in between. Each was carefully selected to deliver maximum mouthfuls of flavor and bone-cooling effect on a hot summer’s day.

But remember, dear reader: summer doesn’t actually end until September 22. So if you missed any of our stops, there’s a complete list at the bottom of this article to help you keep cool in the interim —and beyond. Because really, if you think about it, does summer actually have to end?

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COOL INSIDE: TALL AND COOL IN THE SADDLE

CoffeeCorral_081816The Peanut Butter Protein Blast from the Coffee Corral. (Photo by Sherri Hall. Click to enlarge.)

By SHERRI HALL

coffee corral extThis week, PieHole‘s Cool Inside summer series gets its recommended daily allowance of the primary food groups — caffeine, peanut butter and chocolate —all in one cold cupful at a popular Red Bank coffee stop. Read More »

COFFEE WITH A KICK

It’s not often that you see a horse on busy Shrewsbury Avenue in Red Bank. But when a business is called the Coffee Corral and the back forty is fenced by split rail, well… Owner Russ Crosson’s daughter Courtlyn stopped by for a visit Tuesday with Meet My Hero, her 9-year-old former thoroughbred racer.

By the way…

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COFFEE ON THE BREW

Employees gathered for training Thursday at Russ Crosson’s Coffee Corral, the take-out java shop he built in the onetime home of his now-closed construction company. The shop, at the corner of Shrewsbury Avenue and Drs. James Parker Boulevard in Red Bank, plans to fire up the bean roaster for customers at 5:30 a.m. Monday. (Click to enlarge)

EX-BUILDER WARMS TO BEAN ROASTING

russ-crosson-091311Russ Crosson plans to remake his one-room office space on Drs. Parker Boulevard into a take-out specialty coffee shop. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

retail churn small

At a recent Red Bank zoning board meeting, redbankgreen was surprised to learn that builder Russ Crosson had closed his 20-year-old construction business.

Crosson was seeking board permission to convert his company’s headquarters, on Wallace Street, back to a two-family home, which it had been before he turned it into something of a restoration showcase a block from Broad Street just three years ago.

His company, Crosson told the board, had gone under, a victim of a near-stoppage of work in public works, and he no longer needed the space. The hearing on the request, which faces opposition from neighbors, is scheduled to continue Thursday night.

But what, we wondered, did the failure of Crosson Construction mean to its plan for a strip mall on the borough’s West Side?

It turns out that dream, which gained informal approval just 17 months ago, is also dead. But another, more modest one has taken its place, and for coffee lovers, it’s one that’s sure to smell heavenly.

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CORNER TALK WITH CROSSON

crosson1

Russ Crosson has submitted early plans to build a small strip mall at the corner of Shrewsbury Avenue and Drs. James Parker Boulevard. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Russ Crosson had reasons to give up on Red Bank’s West Side a long time ago.

Growing up on Chapin Avenue in the ’60s, a period of racial tension and civil unrest, his childhood wasn’t entirely the stuff of warm, fuzzy feelings.

“I used to get beat up almost every day,” he said. “I’d get held against the fence and get my lights punched out. I’d get snowballs shoved down my mouth.”

But some 40 years later, Crosson is still hanging around the West Side, and with plenty of fond memories of the area he grew up in. And it doesn’t appear he’s going anywhere soon.

The 52-year-old building contractor is on track to infuse some life into on one of the most underutilized corners in town: a grassy lot at the intersection of Shrewsbury Avenue and Drs. James Parker Boulevard, not far from where Crosson was force-fed snowballs as a kid.

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