SHREWSBURY POLICE BLOTTER

Recent activity reports for the period of February 2 to February 7, 2013, unedited, as provided by the Shrewsbury Police Department.

call-in-the-authorities• Residential structure fire occurring at 469 Sycamore Ave on 2/4/13. Fire determined to be accidental. No injuries. Sgt. Michael Gallagher and Ptl. James Ramsey investigating.

• Harassing phone calls reported by a 55 year old resident on 2/4/13. Ptl. Jessica Boyd investigating.

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SHREWSBURY MANSION DATED TO THE 1840s

A backhoe begins demolition on the fire-ravaged house, above. Below. furniture salvaged by firefighters. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

In a matter of hours, a raging fire ended some 170 years of Shrewsbury history.

A Sycamore Avenue mansion that its owner said dates back to the 1840s was damaged beyond repair in a fast-moving blaze Monday afternoon. By 9 p.m., even as flames continued to burn in the attic, heavy equipment had begun tearing down the wood-frame structure, ripping open canary yellow clapboard and exposing walls with burned artwork hanging on them.

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SHREWSBURY HOUSE FIRE TAKES HEAVY TOLL

A view of the fire from the home’s back yard. Below, Shrewsbury firefighters prepare to attack the blaze from above. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

More than two hours after after it was first called in, a fire in a Shrewsbury mansion was still underway late Monday afternoon.

At 3:38 p.m., firefighters reported “heavy fire above the front door.”

By then, the blaze had inflicted major damage on the house, a canary yellow mansion set back from the roadway just east of Samara Drive.

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FIRE RIPS SHREWSBURY MANSION

Firefighters from multiple towns were on the scene of a stubborn, wind-fueled fire that broke out in a Shrewsbury mansion early Monday afternoon.

There were reports of “a large amount of ammunition” going off in the house, though the homeowner told firefighters there was no ammunition in the house.

Firefighters were also struggling with inadequate water pressure from hydrants.

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SHREWSBURY STORE REPORTS DAMAGE, THEFT

Activity reports for the period of January 25 to February 1, 2013, , unedited, as provided by the Shrewsbury Police Department.

call-in-the-authorities• Theft occurring at 1075 Broad St. on 1/28/13. Victim reports aluminum racks taken by unknown subjects(s) valued at $400.00. Ptl. Tracy Polk investigating

• Theft occurring at 20 Obre Pl. on 1/28/13. Victim reports items taken from purse valued at $100.00 by unknown subject(s). Ptl. Jessica Boyd investigating.

• Pedestrian struck by motor vehicle occurring at 597 Broad St. on 1/28/13. The victim a 67 year old Long Branch resident was transported to Riverview Medical Center with minor injuries. Ptl. Jessica Boyd investigating.

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WEEKEND: BOOK SHOPPING, RUNNING, ART…

The Friends of the Red Bank Public Library three-day book sale kicks off Friday night with a reception, hits its stride Saturday, and concludes with a fill-a-bag coda on Monday. (Click to enlarge)

Friday, February 1

SHREWSBURY: Shrewsbury’s branch of the Monmouth County Library will host Dr. Janice Thomas from Brookdale Community College at 11 a.m. To kick-off the First Friday for Seniors series, Thomas will put on a presentation outlining her trip to India during which she learned about the culture and education system. 1001 Route 35 North.

MIDDLETOWN: Athlete Kyllian Warman returns to her Middletown roots to discuss how she was able to achieve her 2012 New Year’s resolution of running 2012 miles– and plans to run 2013 miles this year – at the Main Library at 2 p.m. Tying into this, she will also share the ways she sets goals and overcomes obstacles. 55 New Monmouth Road.

LINCROFT: Christian Brothers Academy starts its annual art show and sale by hosting a preview celebration from 7 to 11 p.m. The event will feature wine and hors d’oeuvres by Merri Makers, plus live music. The $60 admission also includes reentry to the weekend’s art and antique show. RSVP online here. Newman Springs Road.

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SEA BRIGHT: NO BRIDGE WORK ON WEEKENDS

Repairs on the Rumson-Sea Bright Bridge may take up to two weeks longer to complete than previously anticipated, but will allow for traffic flows on weekends. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

A compromise to a widely criticized plan to shut down the Rumson-Sea Bright Bridge for three weeks starting this weekend January 28 was reached Tuesday, town officials said.

Under the compromise, repair work on the bridge will be halted on Friday afternoons and resume on Monday mornings, with the Shrewsbury River span remaining open to traffic throughout the weekends.

“It’s a win-win-win,” said an ecstatic Chris Wood, whose restaurant, Woody’s Ocean Grille, is scheduled to reopen for business Wednesday for the first time since Hurricane Sandy slammed into the shore, wiping out every business in town.

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WEEKEND: ELIVII, DANCE, QUILTS, MOSAICS…

Dance majors in RBR’s Visual and Performing Arts program present ‘A Blast from the Past,’ 23 dances choreographed to the music of the Beatles, Michael Jackson, Queen, Madonna and more. (Click to enlarge)

Friday, January 18

FAIR HAVEN: Fair Haven’s Raven and the Peach is the setting for a special fundraiser dedicated to the animal adoption charity Project Animal Worldwide (PAW), with light fare, desserts, gift basket auctions, jewelry bar and a tasting presented in the restaurant’s wine cellar from 7 to 10 p.m. Tickets are $30, with the wine tasting for an additional $15. Call 732-979-6499 to reserve. 740 River Road.

RED BANK: The Elvii return, for the ninth annual edition of what’s become an unshakably shakin’ Basie tradition, Elvis’ Birthday Bash. Soaps actor Scot Bruce (as the younger Elvis) and award winning Mike Albert (as the Vegassy jumpsuit Elvis) team up once again for a Count Basie two-fer at 8 p.m. Tickets are $19.50, $29.50, and $39.50. Call 732-842-9000 to reserve. 99 Monmouth Street.

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WEEKENDER: HOME SHOW, RECOVERY, SATIRE

The Daily Show political correspondent John Oliver brings his mordant wit to the Basie, and former Rutgers football player Eric LeGrand is at Rumson-Fair Haven Regional to to discuss his book, below. (Click to enlarge)

Friday, January 11

LINCROFT: The Robert J. Collins Arena at Brookdale Community College hosts the 23rd annual expo of home improvement contractors, vendors and manufacturers, a three-day event showcasing everything from spas to sponges, and every helpful/healthful thing between. Hours are from 1 to 8 p.m. Friday, 11 to 8 Saturday, 11 to 5 Sunday. Tickets are $8 for adults, $5 kids 12-17, under 12 are free. Newman Springs Road/Route 520.

RUMSON: Former Rutgers football player Eric LeGrand, paralyzed in a game, talks about his effort to recover, as described in his book, ‘Believe: My Faith and the Tackle That Changed My Life’ (available at River Road Books). 7 to 10 p.m. 74 Ridge Hill Road.

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BUY LOCAL: GIFTS AND STOCKING-STUFFERS

For the home décor lover, a vase in the hottest color of the season, tangerine, for $32 at the Store from River Road in Shrewsbury. (Photos by Rebecca Desfosse. Click to enlarge)

By REBECCA DESFOSSE

Still have last-minute gifts to buy for the holidays? Look no further than the merchants of Red Bank, Little Silver, Fair Haven, Rumson and Shrewsbury.

There are so many great shops on the Green that it can be hard to know where to start, especially with the countdown to the holidays upon us. So redbankgreen has been scouring the streets and window-shopping for you to make life a easier for harried shoppers. Our latest excursion turned up the following items, priced from under $10 to $20,000 (gulp).

For example, check out “In My Tree,” above, a children’s book by Sara Gillingham and Lorena Siminovich at Kidegories in Shrewsbury. The book comes complete with its own-finger puppet for $8.99.

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TIM McLOONE, ENGINEER OF A NONSTOP TRAIN

At the keyboards, on the radio, coaching runners or in the back room of one of his nine restaurants, Holiday Express founder Tim McLoone is a marvel of achievement.  (Photo by Suzy Graham. Click to enlarge)

By DANIELLE TEPPER

Tim McLoone is a man with a dozen hands, all tackling a dozen sizable tasks at once.

He owns McLoone’s Running Store, his first business, at the Grove in Shrewsbury. He owns nine restaurants, including the Rum Runner in Sea Bright and the recently acquired former CJ Montana in Tinton Falls, rebranded as CJ McLoone’s. He’s a sports announcer for the collegiate basketball games at Newark’s Prudential Center. He just launched his own radio show on December 1. He coaches the Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School girls’ cross-country team.  And at the heart of it all is his philanthropic brain child, an idea that blossomed from a one-time gig into a full-scale traveling circus: Holiday Express.

The non-profit organization is its own Christmas miracle: a massive effort on behalf of roughly 300 adult volunteers, 700 child and teenage volunteers, 100 musicians, and one man who brought together their desires to bring smiles to those in need of a little comfort and joy.

Tonight, Holiday Express makes its much-anticipated annual station stop at the grand Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank.

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SHREWSBURY: FASHION TOUCHES ON WHEELS

A customer checks out the merchandize at Call Me Leon’s event at the Lambs and Wolves Salon last month. Below, Lori Lane. (Photo by Rebecca Desfosse. Click to enlarge)

By REBECCA DESFOSSE

If you don’t feel like braving the stores this holiday season, Lori Lane of CallMeLeon will bring the store to you.

Lane’s mobile boutique offers clients an opportunity to host parties at their home or business and invite their friends over for any occasion – whether it’s a holiday party, a girl’s night out, or a birthday party. She brings the merchandise to your doorstep, sets it up and cleans up afterward.

Lane also always has showroom set up at her home in Shrewsbury for those who wish to stop by and browse.

On Black Friday, Lane set up her merchandise at Glen Goldbaum’s Lambs and Wolves Salon on Bridge Avenue in Red Bank for an event complete with sandwiches, snacks, and bottled water for her guests. Salon manager Heather Lubischer said that when Lane contacted them to host a party for her business, she didn’t hesitate to accept. “Lori has been our client for years and has become like family,” she said.

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RED BANK: SEX SHOP LAW TO TWEAK TERMS

By: REBECCA DESFOSSE

Red Bank’s governing body put the brakes on pending changes to an ordinance limiting the locations in which porn shops and nude dancing clubs can operate Wednesday.

But the tabling of the changes, until the borough council’s next meeting on December 19, was over technical notification issues, and not in response to concerns raised by officials in Shrewsbury.

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RED BANK: SEX SHOP LAW PROMPTS CONCERNS


Shrewsbury officials are cold to the idea of Red Bank limiting adult-oriented businesses on Newman Springs Road, their shared border. (Photo by Wil Fulton. Click to enlarge)

By WIL FULTON

A move by Red Bank to limit sex-oriented businesses to its southern border has Shrewsbury officials hot under the collar.

At their bimonthly meeting earlier this week, members of the Shrewsbury council teed up a pending change in Red Bank’s land use law that would restrict adult entertainment establishments – should any ever pop up – to Newman Springs Road, the common boundary between the two towns.

“I truly think we need to take a hard look at that,” said Councilman Anthony Pellegrino, because it would “push adult entertainment things out of downtown to put it to the outskirts of town, which adversely affects us, because it’s right along our border.”

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SHREWSBURY SHINES SPOTLIGHT ON JCP&L

By: REBECCA DESFOSSE

In case it wasn’t already getting the message, JCP&L will now hear it from the Borough of Shrewsbury: get your act together.

At Monday night’s town council meeting, a resolution that resulted from a recent “Snow Summit” of Monmouth County town officials  won approval. It includes 10 recommendations aimed at getting the power utility to improve communications in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.

One council member voted against the measure.

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SHREWSBURY: PAIR GUILTY IN WILD CAT CASE

Some of the makeshift housing created for a colony of cats behind a preschool in Shrewsbury, as seen last July. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Two women were found guilty of fostering a “nuisance” colony of feral cats in a Shrewsbury office park Tuesday.

Jeanette Petti of Oceanport and Ruth Rapkin of Tinton Falls say they will appeal the verdict by municipal court Judge James Berube, as well as his order that they each pay $650 in fines and relocate the colony. That, their lawyer said, would be a “death sentence” for five cats the women feed and provide medical care for.

“We should be considered heroes, not criminals,” for ensuring the health of the wild felines and thus, the community, Petti told redbankgreen after a two-and-a-half-hour trial at a special session of the court.

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SHREWSBURY COUNCIL MEETING RECAP

By: REBECCA DESFOSSE

Monday night’s council meeting, convening at 7:30 p.m., was adjourned in time for  attendees to be home to watch the 49ers take on the Bears at 8:30 p.m. – or “Dancing with the Stars” if that’s more your taste.

Louis Ferraro’s contract as police chief was approved unanimously. The specifics of the contract were not discussed at the meeting and were not included in the resolution passed at the meeting.

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SHREWSBURY RE-ELECTS INCUMBENTS

By JOHN T. WARD

Incumbent Republicans Jeffrey DeSalvo and Anthony Pellegrino sailed to new three-year terms on the borough council Tuesday, holding off a challenge from Democrat Donald Sena.

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RED BANK: A SURGE IN SEARCH OF POWER

With power on along the west side of Broad Street, Starbucks was packed with laptoppers at noon Thursday. Below, an unidentified man tapped into the grid courtesy of a vacant storefront. (Click to enlarge)

They’re hungry for power.

With tens of thousands of homes still without electricity on the Red Bank area, data-starved residents are swarming facilities with electricity, wifi and, ideally, coffee Thursday.

Starbucks in Red Bank was packed at noon, nearly 24 hours after power was restored to parts of the downtown.

Other businesses are encouraging the public to stop by and charge up.

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SEA BRIGHT SMASHED BY HURRICANE SANDY

Ship Ahoy Beach Club appears heavily damaged, as seen from the bridge. Below, Ocean Avenue looking north during the storm Monday. (Photo below by Peter Lindner. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Hurricane Sandy devastated Sea Bright Monday, bashing beach clubs and stores from the ocean side, flooding from the river side, and leaving an avenue of deep sand more than a mile long along Ocean Avenue, witnesses said.

As of early Tuesday afternoon, police were still barring entry to the sandbar borough, citing dangers that included downed power lines and natural gas leaks.

But in interviews with redbankgreen, witnesses — including two holdouts who defied a mandatory evacuation order and rode out the storm in their homes — spoke of far-reaching destruction.

“Chapel Beach Club – that’s gone,” said weekly Two River Times news photographer Scott Longfeld, who was permitted into town. “Every club except for Surfside is destroyed.”

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RED BANK: SANDY SINKS ANTI-OBAMA FLOAT

Just two days ago, it was riding high, towed around on the Navesink by a boater whose identity redbankgreen doesn’t know. By Monday, though, a custom-built anti-Obama floating ad was underwater at a dock in Red Bank.

Should we read anything into this about next week’s presidential election? And if so, who is sunk: Obama or Nobama? (Photo above by Michael McMahon; at right, by Dan Natale. Click to enlarge)

RED BANK: WIND RIPS ROOF OFF HIGH-RISE

Strong winds peeled back the roofing atop the Grandville Tower high rise on Morford Place in Red Bank Monday afternoon, leaving it flapping over the edge of the 10-story building. (Photo by Ken Kalada. Click to enlarge)

REALLY? NOW??

Fido gets one of his most pressing needs tended to on East Front Street in Red Bank during a Hurricane Sandy downpour Monday afternoon. (Click to enlarge)