WRECKING STORM TAXES EMERGENCY CREWS

garden-rdA fallen tree punched a hole in the roof of a house on Garden Road in Little Silver. Firefighters responded to a report of smoke. (Click photos to enlarge)

A nearly uninterrupted stream of emergency calls had police, firefighters and medical personnel jumping Saturday afternoon.

Heavy rain driven by high winds knocked down trees, limbs, power lines and traffic lights in the Red Bank region.

Here’s a sampling of what redbankgreen saw on a short spin through the area.

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SEAL OF APPROVAL FOR SEA BRIGHT BEACH

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A seal lazes on the beach in Sea Bright Saturday morning. (Photos courtesy of Paul Kinsella; click to enlarge)

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To a seal, apparently, a New Jersey beach in February is equivalent to one in the Caribbean for humans.

An evidently healthy seal decided to take a lie-down Saturday on the beach adjoining the main municipal lot in Sea Bright.

“It was miserable down there, so there weren’t a lot of people, which was probably good for the seal,” said Paul Kinsella of Red Bank, who sent redbankgreen these pix.

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SEA BRIGHT NIXES HONKIN’ BIG BRIDGE SIGNS

rt-36-bridgeHighlands and Sea Bright officials don’t favor DOT plans to install signs that hang over the Route 36 bridge, shown here in November. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

It wasn’t that long ago that advocates of keeping that troublesome bridge that once linked Sea Bright to Highlands pooh-poohed the idea of constructing a new, larger once because it didn’t fit in with the landscape of the area.

Now, that the new Route 36 bridge is kind of here — the Sea Bright-to-Highlands section is complete, with the rest targeted to be done in 2011 — officials are echoing that old cry, with a plea to halt signs the state Department of Transportation intends to install, saying that they’re more useful for the Garden State Parkway or New Jersey Turnpike.

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BEACH ACCESS PLANS MAY IRK RESIDENTS

sea-bright-bus-stopThis bus stop may be moved and improved if the borough gets the OK to widen the entrance/exit to the municipal parking lot. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Sea Bright officials are working on the first phase of planned improvements to the borough’s beachfront as required by the recent lawsuit settlement that will open up more public space along the beach.

The Sea Bright Smart Growth Committee has drawn up plans to re-stripe the municipal parking lot and possibly add a couple more spaces, widen the lot exit and move the recycling center.

That last one they don’t believe will sit well with some residents.

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BEACHGOERS PLEASED WITH SEA BRIGHT DEAL

sea-bright-beach-1More beaches in Sea Bright will be open to the public thanks to a lawsuit settlement reached last week. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

More than three years of legal battling against the borough and private beach clubs has resulted in a win for the public, say local beachgoers.

They will be able to use more space in front of six private Sea Bright clubs as a result of a settlement in the state Superior Court last Wednesday. According to a prior agreement, the average visitor was only allowed to lay down a towel or chair within a 15-stretch along the waterline in front of the clubs. Now the space is 150 feet.

It may be hard to find anyone from the public who’s going to complain about that, considering the issue has long been a bone of contention within the borough.

“I’m all in favor for it,” said Maryanne Maletto, of Red Bank.

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A BUNCH OF GALS WHO TRI, TRI, TRI

ocean-swimMembers of the Jersey Shore Tri Gals take to the ocean on a training swim Wednesday. (Click to enlarge)

Twenty years ago, in the early days of the Danskin Triathlon, it used to take weeks or months for the event to get fully booked with participants.

This year, all 1,000 slots for the Sandy Hook edition of the swim-bike-run women’s series were filled in a matter of hours.

The event, and the clubs that feed racers into it, just keep growing, said Fair Haven’s Pam Mancuso, self-appointed “queen” and co-founder of the  Jersey Shore Tri Gals. The club, launched in 2004 with just four members, now has some 130, 65 of whom will be in the Danskin race.

“A couple of months ago, half these women wouldn’t even put a toe in the water,” Mancuso said of a group of about 18 women getting ready to join her on a training swim in rough surf at Sea Bright earlier this week. “Now, they’re attacking the water.”

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SEA BRIGHT CHARGES INTO SKIM BOARD FEST

sea-bright-skim-bash-2A competitor goes airborne in last year’s edition of the event, now in its sixth year.

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Forget those end-of-summer blues this weekend. Sea Bright’s got some hot beach action lined up, weather forecast be damned.

Hundreds of spectators and competitors from around the country are expected to watch or participate in the sixth annual Sea Bright Skim Bash, a three-day type of fair at the borough beach.

The weekend is centered on the burgeoning sport of skimming, in which contestants run from shore into an incoming wave, mount a small version of a surfboard at the water’s edge and ride waves like traditional surfers.

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SUMMER MAY END ON SUNNY NOTE

sea-bright-sunriseSunrise over Sea Bright this morning, as seen from Chapel Beach Club. The cheeky message on the lifeguard stand is premature, at best. (Click to enlarge)

Let’s hope the weather forecasters have this one right.

They’re predicting one mild, sunshiney day after another as we head into the final week of unofficial summer. And after the soaking this region took this season, it seems well-earned, doesn’t it?

Here’s the day-by-day outlook from the National Weather Service:

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GROOM TAKES THE CAKE

hot-topic1This just in from the Asbury Park Press: the groom at a wedding reception held over the weekend at McLoone’s Rum Runner in Sea Bright was arrested during the soiree for wigging out on a relative.

Have at it, folks:

Jeffrey Vaccaro, 38, of Chantilly Road in Manalapan, was taken into custody Friday night after he repeatedly threatened and tried to fight his own uncle, Chief William S. Moore said.

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SURFRIDER EXPANSION PLAN REJECTED AGAIN

hot-topic1In a case that hinged on arcane voting rules about planning boards that do double duty as zoning boards, the state Appellate Division has rejected a Sea Bright beach club’s bid to expand its catering business.

The appeals court last Friday overturned a Superior Court ruling that would have allowed the Surfrider Beach Club to add to banquet facilities that had been approved in 1992.

The borough zoning board denied the expansion plan in 2005 over concerns about noise and other disruptions, and the owner, D. Lobi Enterprises, sued.

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MAN BITES TUBE STEAK

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In honor of National Hot Dog Month, redbankgreen tips its trucker’s cap today to the men and women of the The Green who work the roller grills and ‘dirty water’ pots to provide us with a favorite culinary indulgence.

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WHALE DOES ANOTHER SEA BRIGHT SWIM-BY

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Children in the surf at the borough’s public beach this morning.

For at least the third time in little more than a week, a whale was sighted off the beach at Sea Bright this morning, witnesses tell redbankgreen.

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