Town Topics — Princeton's Weekly Community Newspaper Since 1946.
Vol. LXV, No. 24
Wednesday, June 15, 2011
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Alexander Road Traffic Problem A Harbinger of Things to Come?

Joel S. Greenberg
Parkside Drive

Arts Council Thanks Local Organizations Taking Part in Americans for Arts Study

Jeff Nathanson
Executive Director, Arts Council of Princeton

Special Needs Prom a Big Success Thanks to Some Very Special People

Deborah Martin Norcross
Princeton Special Sports

Poll Workers Express Appreciation For Election Day Breakfast, Lunch

Linda Sipprelle
Nassau Street

Borough Shade Tree Commission Tree ID Walk Draws More Than 40

Pat Hyatt
Princeton Borough Shade Tree Commission


Alexander Road Traffic Problem A Harbinger of Things to Come?

To the Editor

I read the “Question of the Week” responses in the June 8 issue of Town Topics with great interest. Everyone seems to have been greatly affected by the closing of one of our main east-west routes of access to Princeton. Will it ever again be possible to get to US 1 from Princeton without a trip planner? Since we have been introduced to the effects of restricting the flow of traffic on Alexander Road, one can only wonder if this is a harbinger of things to come if and when Princeton University starts construction of the proposed Arts Center. How long will construction take? Has a traffic plan been developed to cope with traffic during what may be a prolonged — maybe 3-5 years — construction period? If such a plan has been developed, will it be shared with the general public? Will alternative routes of access — such as the opening of Springdale Road, a portion of which is apparently controlled by the University, from Mercer Street to Alexander Road — be considered for the near and long term? What are the long-term traffic implications after construction has been completed? I for one find it somewhat unfortunate that attention has been focused only on the moving/not moving of the Dinky station to the detriment of discussions concerning the future traffic implications of the proposed Art Center.

Joel S. Greenberg
Parkside Drive

Arts Council Thanks Local Organizations Taking Part in Americans for Arts Study

To the Editor:

The Arts Council of Princeton is most grateful to the organizations who have graciously surveyed recent events for the Americans for the Arts’ latest national economic impact study, Arts & Economic Prosperity IV. The Arts Council of Princeton, Greater Princeton Youth Orchestra, Richardson Auditorium, McCarter Theatre, the Princeton Public Library, the Princeton University Art Museum, Westminster Choir College, Princeton Symphony Orchestra, Lewis Center for the Arts and the Princeton Public Library have completed close to 400 audience surveys.

Approximately 20 arts and cultural organizations belonging to the Princeton Area Arts and Culture Consortium, a committee of the Princeton Regional Chamber of Commerce and Convention & Visitors Bureau, will be participating by the end of the year. In May 2012 final research results will report the significant economic impact of arts and culture in Princeton.

If you have attended an exhibition or performance in Princeton over the last several months and completed our simple, one-page questionnaire on the economic impact of arts and culture in Princeton, thank you! Please continue to support this important study with two minutes of your time. The information will be kept strictly confidential and will be used for aggregate data analysis only.

The Arts Council initiated participation in this study at a time when Princeton is undergoing a remarkable period of growth and change. Princeton University generously provided the funds to allow Princeton to be the focus community of this study, which is being conducted by Americans for the Arts, the nation’s leading nonprofit organization for advancing the arts in America. Americans for the Arts has conducted similar economic impact studies in more than 250 U.S. communities over the past twenty years. Their methodology is sound and their economic impact data is used consistently by the Congressional Arts Caucus on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives to support federal arts. This is the first time Princeton has participated in a national arts economic impact study. 

Jeff Nathanson
Executive Director, Arts Council of Princeton

Special Needs Prom a Big Success Thanks to Some Very Special People

To the Editor:

I am writing to thank everyone who made our fourth Princeton Special Needs Prom such a success.

Since 2008, Princeton Special Sports (PSS) and the Princeton Recreation Department (PRD) have been co-sponsoring monthly dances for the teenaged and young adult members of our special needs community. The dances, and especially our prom, are tremendous fun. Through these dances and other events PSS and the PRD have co-sponsored, our neighbors with special needs have had multiple opportunities to socialize with existing friends, and make new ones, in a comfortable environment.

We could not do it without some very special people. We are fortunate that the list is long:

Thank you to Holland Paley for giving our young women the gift of professional makeup sessions, and to Alan Paley for taking videos of both pre-prom activities and the prom itself. Thank you also to Jamie Escarpeta, our talented photographer who has donated his time at every one of our proms. And special thanks to Ted Ernst from the Recreation Department, whose support has made the dances and our other events possible.

Thank you also to our adult volunteers who helped set up, run, and clean up after the prom: Katerina Bubnovsky, Lindsay Crowell, Ann Diver, Jonathan Fishkin, Radha Iyer, Sethu Iyer, Hana Oretsky, Cathy Robertson, Trudy Sugiura, and Yasuo Sugiura.

We are especially grateful for our student volunteers. They energize our participants in ways no adult can match: Emma Crain, Michael Dunlap, Theresa Gebert, Catherine Gonzalez, Kahil Griffin, Holly Greaver, Samantha Itkoff, Tyron Johnson, Kate Kerr, Hanna Kostenbader, Bridgette McGorty, Gabriel McGregor, Kunal Nishcal, Fallon Ohlson, Sammi Paley, Katherine Powell, Sierra Rosario, Caroline Smith, Adam Straus-Goldfarb, Carl Torsilieri, and Sydney Watts.

Thank you to Michelle Davis, Nancy Long, and Tony Richichi from the Princeton Regional Schools, and to Tom Zucowski of the Joint Recreation Board, for coming. It meant a lot to our community.

And finally, thank you to my fellow trustees, the most dedicated group of volunteers you’ll ever meet: Carmine Conti, Ann Diver, Hana Oretsky, John Pecora, John Rutledge, and Barb Young.

Come watch your special needs neighbors play baseball at Community Park on Sundays from 1 to 2:30, and join us at the 1st Annual Special Needs Skate Camp at Hilltop Park on July 9.

Deborah Martin Norcross
Princeton Special Sports

Poll Workers Express Appreciation For Election Day Breakfast, Lunch

To the Editor:

On behalf of all Princeton Borough and Township primary election poll workers, I would like to sincerely thank the Bank of Princeton, D’Angelos Italian Market, and Small World Coffee for providing us with a delicious breakfast and lunch. As we worked from 5:15 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., the thoughtfulness and generosity of the above noted entities was highly valued and greatly appreciated.

Linda Sipprelle
Nassau Street

Borough Shade Tree Commission Tree ID Walk Draws More Than 40

To the Editor:

The Princeton Borough Shade Tree Commission (www.pbshadetree.org) thanks Town Topics for publicizing our Spring Tree Identification Walk through Marquand Park on Saturday, June 11. More than 40 men, women, and children attended the free event, led by tree enthusiast Roland Machold with an assist from his artist/wife Pamela. For two hours, the group successfully braved threatening skies, and circled through the Park’s extensive collection of local and exotic trees, all the while entertained by intriguing tree folklore, tree facts, and Princeton history as dished out nonstop by guide Machold in his straw boater. The Macholds also distributed 13-page color photo guides, so that attendees could return and repeat the tour on their own or with others. (For those who missed today’s walk, somewhat more extensive guides to Marquand Park are sold at the Princeton Historical Society.) This tree walk was co-sponsored by the Princeton Township Shade Tree Commission and the Princeton Parks Alliance.

Watch for our next tree ID walk, and meanwhile, check out our new website at www.pbshadetree.org for local tree care advice, lists of native species that thrive in Princeton, and answers to frequently asked questions about trees in our area.

Pat Hyatt
Princeton Borough Shade Tree Commission

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