RED BANK COUNCIL Q&A: MICHAEL BALLARD

michael ballard 090915 1Michael Ballard, Democrat. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

Election 2015 graphic

The balance of political power is at play in the November 3 election in Red Bank, which features four candidates for two three-year seats on the borough council. All four have indicated they’ll participate in the West Side Community Group’s annual candidates’ forum at the River Street Commons at 7 p.m. on Thursday, October 1. For more information about the event, take it here.

To help voters compare the contenders in terms of personal background and positions on key issues, redbankgreen emailed them identical sets of questions late last week. Here’s what Michael Ballard had to say in response.

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RED BANK COUNCIL Q&A: MARK TAYLOR

mark taylor 033015Mark Taylor, Republican. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

Election 2015 graphic

The balance of political power is at stake in the November 3 election in Red Bank, which features four candidates for two three-year seats on the borough council. All four have indicated they’ll participate in the West Side Community Group’s annual candidates’ forum at the River Street Commons at 7 p.m. on Thursday, October 1. For more information about the event, take it here.

To help voters compare the contenders in terms of personal background and positions on key issues, redbankgreen emailed them identical sets of questions late last week. Here’s what Mark Taylor had to say in response.

Read More »

RED BANK COUNCIL Q&A: MICHAEL DUPONT

dupontMichael DuPont, Democrat. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

Election 2015 graphic

The balance of political power is at stake in the November 3 election in Red Bank, which features four candidates for two three-year seats on the borough council. All four have indicated they’ll participate in the West Side Community Group’s annual candidates’ forum at the River Street Commons at 7 p.m. on Thursday, October 1. For more information about the event, take it here.

To help voters compare the contenders in terms of personal background and positions on key issues, redbankgreen emailed them identical sets of questions late last week. Here’s what Michael DuPont, the sole incumbent in the race, had to say in response.

Read More »

RED BANK COUNCIL Q&A: MICHAEL WHELAN

mike whelan 033015Michael Whelan, Republican. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

Election 2015 graphic

The balance of political power is at stake in the November 3 election in Red Bank, which features four candidates for two three-year seats on the borough council. All four have indicated they’ll participate in the West Side Community Group’s annual candidates’ forum at the River Street Commons at 7 p.m. on Thursday, October 1. For more information about the event, take it here.

To help voters compare the contenders in terms of personal background and positions on key issues, redbankgreen emailed them identical sets of questions late last week. Here’s what Michael Whelan had to say in response.

Read More »

RED BANK: BURNHAM BLASTS PARK DELAY

rb tennis 081915 2The clay tennis courts at Marine Park as seen last month. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Five months after three proposals were submitted, the Red Bank council has yet to receive a recommendation on the future of the hurricane-damaged Marine Park clay tennis courts, and may not get one before election day.

That has Republican Councilwoman Cindy Burnham — who redbankgreen has learned was chastised behind closed doors by her colleagues for saying too much about the issue — ramping up her complaints that there’s something “fishy” going on.

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RED BANK: COUNCIL GIRDS FOR POSSIBLE SUIT

rb tennis 081915 1The clay tennis courts at Marine Park as seen last month, above. Below, an architect’s depiction of the proposed Red Bank Harbor plan. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

red bank harbor 3 041515Red Bank’s mayor and council held a closed-door meeting Wednesday night to discuss potential litigation over the process that could lead to a makeover of the hurricane-damaged clay tennis courts in Marine Park.

Mayor Pasquale Menna told redbankgreen shortly beforehand that the topics to be discussed by the governing body in executive session included “possible litigation” concerning the tennis court site, though he declined to be more specific.

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RED BANK: JETSUN DEFENDS PROPOSAL

red bank harbor 1 041515A rendering by architect Mike Simpson of the Red Bank Harbor proposal, as seen from the horseshoe marina at Marine Park. Below, Jetsun principals Doug Booton, Michael Hernandez and Anthony Jude Setaro at the Red Bank Mayor’s Charity Ball in May. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

jetsuns 050115Jetsun Enterprises is not proposing a “Coney Island” in Marine Park, the startup developer said Tuesday night, in response to criticism by Red Bank Councilman Mike DuPont and comments posted on redbankgreen.

“Comparing our proposal to any large theme park such as Coney Island or Seaside is both illogical and irresponsible,” Jetsun said in a press release. “We are offering small recreational activities for families, not building rollercoasters and ferris wheels. We are extending the existing promenade, not constructing a boardwalk.” Read More »

RED BANK: DUPONT ZAPS JETSUN PROPOSAL

rb tennis 060614 2The red clay courts, idled since Hurricane Sandy, as seen from the Monmouth Boat Club next door. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Red Bank Councilman Mike DuPont has signaled he will oppose a proposal for a privately owned recreational center on the site of the borough’s riverfront tennis courts in Marine Park.

Calling the proposal, by Jetsun Enterprises, “10 pounds of potatoes in a 5 pound bag,” DuPont wrote in a letter that it “puts every imaginable use down at Marine Park with the exception of not having a ferris wheel” and could turn Red Bank into “Coney Island South.”

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RED BANK: ACTION EXPECTED ON COURT PLANS

rb tennis 042515 2HOT-TOPIC_03Wondering about the fate of Red Bank’s clay tennis courts in Marine Park, and whether they’ll be saved or replaced by either of two competing proposals to develop the waterfront site?

After nearly two months of silence, the borough parks and rec committee is expected to discuss the issue Monday night, when it could issue its non-binding recommendation to a trio of council members – Linda Schwabenbauer, Kathy Horgan and Ed Zipprich.

The councilmembers, in turn, are expected to meet Tuesday night in a closed session to “score” three proposals, one of which calls for keeping the courts, according to criteria set out in bids. They’ll also weigh comments made at a public forum held in May and afterward, said Schwabenbauer, who expects the committee to make a recommendation to the full governing body by the end of August, she said Wednesday. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

 

RED BANK: TENNIS COURT IDEAS VOLLEYED

jetsun 2 052815  An exhibit showed the layout of the Jetsun proposal superimposed an aerial view of the park. Below, MPAC principals Phil Flego, Gayle Horvath and Sandy Talarico make their pitch. (Photos by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

mpac 1 052815What should be done with the hurricane-damaged red clay tennis courts at Red Bank’s riverfront Marine Park?

For almost three hours Thursday night, area residents offered opinions and teased out details of three formal proposals: one that calls for restoring the courts with a $500,000 donation by a Locust resident, and two that envision real estate development of river-oriented activity centers.

Each had its advocates and opponents, and none appeared to have won the hearts of all 120 people in attendance.

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RED BANK PUTTING COURT PLANS INTO PLAY

rb tennis 042515 4The courts haven’t been playable since they were swamped by the Navesink River during Hurricane Sandy in October, 2012. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03Three proposals for the future of Red Bank’s red clay tennis courts in Marine Park are scheduled for public airing later this month.

The borough council will hold a special meeting on Thursday, May 28, at the Red Bank Middle School for presentations of the three plans. Two of them include ambitious real estate development and river-oriented activities, while the third aims to keep the site as a tennis facility.

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RED BANK: CLASSIC BOATHOUSE PROPOSED

MPAC rendering 041515A rendering of the proposed Marine Park Activity Center shows the existing Monmouth Boat Club at right. (Rendering by Katie Osepchuk. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03One of three proposed plans for the reuse Red Bank’s dormant clay tennis courts calls for the construction of a classic boathouse topped by a catering hall on the Navesink River in Marine Park.

The project, dubbed the Marine Park Activity Center, reflects the traditional river-oriented focus of two groups –  Navesink River Rowing club and the Navesink Maritime Heritage Association – anchored by a structure similar to boathouses in West Windsor and Camden, its proponents said.

redbankgreen detailed another of the three plans, called Red Bank Harbor, on Wednesday. The third proposal consists solely of an individual’s offer to donate $500,000 to the borough for the restoration of the site as a red-clay tennis facility, redbankgreen has learned.

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RED BANK: RIVERFRONT REC CENTER PROPOSED

red bank harbor 1 041515Renderings of the proposed Red Bank Harbor plan filed with the borough government on Wednesday. The horseshoe-shaped borough marina is in the foreground above. (Drawings by S.O.M.E. Architects. Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

red bank harbor 2 041515Vastly eclipsing the concept of a mere dog run, a startup development firm has proposed the creation of a privately funded, $3.5 million recreation facility on the site of Red Bank’s borough-owned red clay tennis courts in Marine Park, redbankgreen has learned.

Dubbed Red Bank Harbor, the plan drafted by Jetsun Enterprises and filed at borough hall on Wednesday calls for the creation of an enclosed visitors’ center along with an 18-hole miniature golf course, a synthetic ice rink, a boathouse for rental of paddleboats and kayaks, and a concession stand in the park, which fronts on the Navesink River.

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RED BANK: TENNIS COURTS? YOUR SERVE.

rb tennis 061414Do you have an idea and viable plan for the use of Red Bank’s 74-year-old red-clay tennis courts?

The riverfront facility in Marine Park, out of action since it was wrecked by Hurricane Sandy, are the subject of a request for proposals released Thursday. So far, talk has included restoration of the courts, turning at least two of the courts into a dog run, and a wholesale repurposing of the site as a multiuse, water-oriented recreation facility.

The deadline for submissions is 10 a.m. on April 15. Here’s the 165-page submission packet: RB RFP 032015. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

 

RED BANK: TENNIS COURTS MAY GET BOUNCED

RB TENNIS CTS 020715 1The courts, which adjoin the privately owned Monmouth Boat Club, center, haven’t been playable since Hurricane Sandy. Below, the principals of Jetsun Enterprises – Anthony Jude Setaro, Michael Hernandez and Doug Booton – want to develop the site for new recreational uses. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

jetsun 022315Red Bank’s 74-year-old red-clay tennis courts, out of action since they were damaged by Hurricane Sandy 28 months ago, may be turned into a dog run, at least short-term.

Longer-term, a trio of thirty-something locals hopes to transform the courts, which overlook the Navesink River from Marine Park, into a multiuse recreational facility that would, they say, put money into the town’s coffers.

Either way, the courts may have seen their last volley of tennis.

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RED BANK: DOGS, TENNIS & POLICING

RB DOG DAYS 073013 20Having held a Dog Days of Summer monthly event for two summers in a row, borough officials are now contemplating a year-round facility for dogs to play in. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

Should Red Bank establish a place for dogs to play? And if so, where?

And what should become of the borough’s red-clay tennis courts in Marine Park?

Those are among the questions on the table at a meeting scheduled for next week.

Another meeting, scheduled for later this week, concerns crime and community relations.

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RFH: 11 ATHLETES COMMIT TO COLLEGES

The ink, laughter and some tears flowed as 11 Rumson-Fair Haven student-athletes, including nine young women, committed to various colleges, where they’ll continue playing tennis, baseball, lacrosse and more starting next September. Shore Sports Zone has the full scoop, on video.

RFH GIRLS TAKE FIELD HOCKEY TOURNAMENT

Rumson-Fair Haven’s Peyton McCauley tallied a pair of first-half goals and the Bulldawgs defense took care of the rest in a 2-0 win that ended Shore Regional’s remarkable 15-year domination of the Shore Conference Tournament Sunday.  Rich Chrampanis’ new video-based website, Shore Sports Zone, has the highlights.

Both teams will continue in state tournament play, with RFH scheduled to Delran Monday. (Video courtesy of Shore Sports Zone.)

RFH: AFTER STATE TITLE, FAHEY PLAYS ON

Rumson-Fair Haven’s Kate Fahey returned from a junior year away from high school tennis to become the first state singles champion in school history last week. Shore Sports Zone, has an interview with Fahey, who has no plans to slack off between now and the start of her Division I college career at the University of Michigan next fall.  (Video courtesy of Shore Sports Zone.)

RFH IN 8-0 FIELD HOCKEY ROUT OF HOLMDEL

Rumson-Fair Haven’s field hockey squad, the top-rated team in this year’s Shore Conference Tournament, shut out Holmdel, 8-0, in round one, advancing to the quarterfinals Tuesday. Rich Chrampanis’ new video-based website, Shore Sports Zone, has the highlights. And tune in Thursday, when SSZ profiles RFH tennis player Kate Fahey, who became the first state singles champion in Rumson history last week. (Video courtesy of Shore Sports Zone.)

RED BANK: TENNIS, TRESTLE, PARKING & DOGS

rb tennis 102912The Red Bank clay courts during Hurricane Sandy on October 29, 2012, above. Below, a truck stuck under the West Front Street railroad trestle last week. (Photos by Peter Lindner and Trish Russoniello. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

rb stuck truck 052314 2Tennis enthusiasts pelted the Red Bank council over the lack of progress on rebuilding the town’s cherished clay courts Wednesday night.

At its bimonthly meeting – conducted over the loud hum of temporary air conditioners while the borough hall HVAC system gets an upgrade – the governing body also took up issues ranging from the vexing train trestle on West Front Street to beagle rights.

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PRIVATE OPERATORS EYE RED BANK COURTS

rb tennis ct 2 091113The clay courts overlooking the Navesink River at Marine Park, closed since Hurricane Sandy, could go under private management. The adjacent lavatories, meantime, are to be demolished and replaced with new facilities on higher ground. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

A year after Hurricane Sandy sent the Navesink River surging, Red Bank’s cherished red-clay tennis courts at Marine Park remain closed and weed-strewn, to the heartbreak of players.

“They’re a treasure to Red Bank,” said Dan Ciaglia, who says he’s played at the courts “three, four, five times a week in the summer for the past 30 years.”

Since Sandy, Ciaglia said, he’s played various hard courts, but considers the clay courts special not only for the surface and location, but for “the little community of people” who play there.

Now, as borough officials plan to relocate adjacent lavatories to higher ground in the park, they’re also sorting through informal proposals that could put the courts under private management.

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RED BANK: CLAY COURTS STILL CLOSED

Rich Nicoletti at Red Bank’s clay courts, which remain out of commission seven months after Hurricane Sandy. (Photo by Wil Fulton. Click to enlarge)

By WIL FULTON

Rich Nicoletti first hit Red Bank’s clay tennis courts in 1955. A few years later, he became assistant to the facility’s tennis pro. In 1990, he was named pro, a title he holds to this day.

“It’s safe to say I easily spent a quarter of my life down here,” Nicoletti said recently, standing on the red clay surface in Marine Park. Rarely, though, has he seen the courts as ravaged as they were by the churning waters of the Navesink River, just feet away, during Hurricane Sandy.

The courts, he said, “were just completely dug up” by the roiling river.

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TWINS GET INTO THE SWING OF SUMMER

10:21 a.m. Mark (left) and Michael (right) Montagu of New York City get a tennis lesson at Victory Park in Rumson. The twins are following in their tennis-loving father’s footsteps at the tender age of 4. (Photo by Danielle Tepper. Click to enlarge)

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READYING RED BANK’S RED CLAY COURTS

It doesn’t look very red now, but the outlook for fans of Red Bank’s red clay courts is rosy. (Click to enlarge)

By DANIELLE TEPPER

A recent visit to Red Bank’s clay tennis courts in Marine Park found the riverfront facility deserted and unusually quiet. The courts, cracked and faded, looked more like a stretch of beige sand than a popular spot for athletes to brush up on their skills.

Not to worry though, for this is an annual lull. Over the next month or so, the only player working these courts will be court manager Rich Nicoletti, who’s been tending the facility, and its patrons, for decades.

“What you’re looking at here is the wear-and-tear of winter,” says Nicoletti. And its his job to bring the playing surface back to dusty-red glory, he said.

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