April 18, 2018

With Toto in her basket, Heather Achenbach, Executive Director of SAVE, a Friend to Homeless Animals, was ready to go to Oz at the organization’s annual gala fundraiser last Saturday night. Achenbach is flanked at “The Wizard of Paws” by Liza Morehouse, board member; Pam Murdoch, president; and board members Cate Murdoch and Tara Hand. The event was held at Princeton Airport. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

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By Donald Gilpin

Community policing, including many outreach programs, positive police-citizen interaction, and improved communication through direct contacts and use of technology — along with successful recruitment and training — are the key themes that emerge in the Princeton Police Department’s 2017 Annual Report, and in subsequent reflections offered by PPD Chief Nick Sutter. more

By Donald Gilpin

Two expert panelists in favor of legalization of marijuana in New Jersey and two opposed presented “The Dope on Marijuana Legalization,” an information and discussion session hosted by the Princeton Community Democratic Organization (PCDO) on Sunday, April 15 at the Suzanne Patterson Center.

Assemblyman Reed Gusciora, sponsor of a current bill in the State Assembly for legalization; and David Nathan, Princeton psychiatrist, educator and founder and board president of Doctors for Cannabis Regulation, spoke first, presenting their perspectives and cases for legalization of recreational marijuana. more

By Anne Levin

Brendan Byrne’s family wanted an event held in his honor at Princeton University last Friday to be focused on the work he did before, during, and after his two terms in state office.

The “Symposium on the Legacy of Brendan Byrne, New Jersey Governor 1974-1982,” at Alexander Hall, was “not a memorial, but a useful and candid discussion,” said his son Tom Byrne, at the start of the program in which politicians and public servants recalled Byrne’s achievements, personality, and influence. He died at age 93 on January 4. more

James Collins “Jimmy” Johnson was a fugitive slave from Maryland who worked on the Princeton campus for more than 60 years, first as a janitor and then as a vendor of fruits, candies, and other snacks that he sold from a wheelbarrow. He died in 1902. (Photo Courtesy University Archives, Princeton University Library)

By Princeton University Office of Communications, Anne Levin

The Princeton University trustees have accepted recommendations to name a publicly accessible garden between Firestone Library and Nassau Street for Elizabeth “Betsey” Stockton, and to name the easternmost arch in East Pyne Hall for James Collins “Jimmy” Johnson. more

By Anne Levin

Back in 2011, the clergy and congregation of Trinity Church on Mercer Street were looking to address the problem of hunger in the community. But they wanted to approach the issue in an innovative way, different from programs that already existed in town. more

PATTERNS IN SCIENCE AND LIFE: Freeman Dyson (on left), renowned as mathematician, physicist, and original thinker on multiple topics, talked with Institute for Advanced Study Director Robbert Dijkgraaf last Friday, April 13 at a celebration of Dyson’s new book, “Maker of Patterns: An Autobiography Through Letters.” (Photo by Donald Gilpin)

By Donald Gilpin

The Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) celebrated Freeman Dyson, the longest-serving professor in the Institute’s history, and his new book, Maker of Patterns: An Autobiography Through Letters, with a public reading and interview on Friday, April 13 in Wolfensohn Hall on the IAS campus. more

On June 4, U.S. Senator Cory Booker will deliver the Class Day address at Princeton University. Held the day before Commencement on historic Cannon Green, Class Day is being organized by members of the graduating class and is one of Princeton’s oldest traditions.  more

Vijay Seshadri, Pulitzer Prize winner and author of 3 Sections, Wild Kingdom, and The Long Meadow, will read from his work at the People & Stories/Gente y Cuentos annual spring benefit at the Princeton Nassau Club at 7:30 p.m. on April 20. Proceeds will support People & Stories/Gente y Cuentos, a reading and discussion program offered in English or Spanish for adults and young adults who have had limited opportunities to experience the transformative power of enduring literature. more

The West Windsor Arts Center will present “Cross Cultural Currents,” an exhibition showcasing four Chinese American artists, who are also professors at four New Jersey-based colleges and universities, from April 30 through June 22. The exhibition, which features the works of Chung-Fan Chang, Zhiyuan Cong, LiQin Tan, and Jing Zhou, highlights the cultural influences on their art. An opening reception will be held on Sunday, May 6, from 4-6 p.m. more

“BEIRUT/BIG BEN”: The black-and-white digital photography of Manal Abu-Shaheen will be featured in “Beirut: Theater of Dreams,” at Princeton University’s Bernstein Gallery in Robertson Hall. The exhibit runs April 23 through August 15, with an artist’s reception on Friday, April 27 from 6 to 8 p.m.

An exhibition of black-and-white digital photography by Manal Abu-Shaheen, “Beirut: Theater of Dreams,” will open at Princeton University’s Bernstein Gallery in Robertson Hall on April 23. The exhibit will run through August 15, with an artist reception on Friday, April 27 from 6 to 8 p.m. The exhibit and reception are free, open to the public, and sponsored by Princeton’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. more

By Stuart Mitchner

The sound is already in us and that sound is based on the heartbeat. — Cecil Taylor (1929-2018)

six-month-old male tuxedo cat is gazing out the window, mesmerized by a frenzy of birdsong, like a dawn chorus at dusk. He’s poised, tensed, all at once frustrated, excited, delighted by the sounds he can’t see. Since the birds are nesting in the hedge outside, the hedge seems to be singing, and so attentive is the cat in his search for the source of the song, it’s as if he’s finally, actually seeing it. He’s on his hind legs now, primed to pounce, except he’s a house cat, he’s never been in the wild, he’s hunting the sound not the birds, it’s all new to him, and the quick, shrill piping little cries he’s emitting are more like mimicry than mewing. He’s calling to the invisible birds and they’re calling back. more

BAKERSFIELD MIST: Performances are underway for Pegasus Theatre Project’s production of “Bakersfield Mist.” Directed by Peter Bisgaier, the play runs through April 22 at the West Windsor Arts Center. Maude (Donne Petito, left) and Lionel (Rupert Hinton) have a heated discussion about the authenticity of a painting. (Photo by John M. Maurer)

By Donald H. Sanborn III

Bakersfield Mist is a tragicomedy in which Maude Gutman, an unemployed bartender, has purchased a painting from a thrift store. She believes that her acquisition is a Jackson Pollack masterpiece worth millions of dollars; the initial conflict arises when Lionel Percy, a haughty art expert, doubts the painting’s authenticity.  more

By Nancy Plum

Richardson Chamber Players journeyed into a new comfort zone this past weekend with a concert celebrating chamber pieces by African-American composers. The 11 members of the Chamber Players performing Sunday afternoon at Richardson Auditorium presented works ranging from the familiar Duke Ellington to a world premiere by one of the University’s own graduate students. A rare collaboration among Princeton University’s jazz and classical faculty, this concert not only showed the versatility of the Chamber Players musicians but also how far outside the box these individuals have traveled in their musical careers. more

By Kam Williams

On July 18, 1969, Senator Edward (Ted) Kennedy (Jason Clarke) hosted a reunion in a rented cottage on Chappaquiddick, a tiny island just 150 yards off the coast of Martha’s Vineyard. The gathering was in honor of the Boiler Room Girls, six women who had worked on his late brother Bobby’s presidential campaign the previous year.

Around 11:15 pm, Kennedy left the party in his ‘67 Oldsmobile with one of those young staffers, 28 year-old Mary Jo Kopechne (Kate Mara). About an hour later, the car, driven by Kennedy, went down a dirt road and off of a wooden bridge. The driver lost control and the car landed upside-down in  Poucha Pond. more

BULLING THROUGH: Princeton University women’s lacrosse player Kyla Sears fights past a defender in recent action. Last Saturday, freshman star attacker Sears tallied four goals and an assist as Princeton defeated Yale 18-4. Princeton, which improved to 7-5 overall and 3-1 Ivy League with the win over the Bulldogs, hosts Cornell on April 21. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

For Kyla Sears, singing the national anthem before home games for the Princeton University women’s lacrosse team has helped calm her nerves when she hits the field. 

“The funny thing is, I did it in high school and I found out I got way more nervous to sing than when I played,” said Princeton freshman star attacker Sears, who performs the singing duties in tandem with Julia Haney. “So when it was over it is, oh, now we can play.” more

SIX SHOOTER: Princeton University men’s lacrosse player Philip Robertson unloads the ball in recent action. Last Saturday, sophomore attackman Robertson tallied six goals to help Princeton defeat Dartmouth 24-13. The Tigers, now 6-5 overall and 1-3 Ivy league, play at Harvard on April 21. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Philip Robertson spent his freshmen season on the Princeton University men’s lacrosse team as an understudy for Gavin McBride.

As attackman McBride tallied a program-record 54 goals last spring in his final campaign, Robertson soaked up as much as he could from the senior star. more

CATCHING FIRE: Princeton High baseball player Alec Silverman takes charge in a game earlier this season. Senior catcher Silverman’s defensive play and solid hitting in the cleanup spot have helped PHS produce a 5-3 start. The Little Tigers will look to keep on the winning track as they host Hightstown on April 18 and Allentown on April 19 before playing at Hightstown on April 20 and then hosting Robbinsville on April 23. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Even though the Princeton High baseball team endured losing campaigns in the first three years of his career,  Alec Silverman sensed things would be different this spring.

“Our guys have invested so much into it,” said Silverman, noting that there are eight seniors on the PHS roster. more

NYCE WORK: Princeton Day School baseball player Matt Nyce makes contact in a recent game. Last Thursday, junior star Nyce went 3-for-5 with two runs and two RBIs to help PDS defeat Peddie 13-6. The Panthers, who lost to Nottingham 10-8 last Saturday to fall to 4-2, host Conwell Egan (Pa.) on April 19 and Lawrence High on April 21 before playing at Gill St.Bernard’s on April 23. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Even though the Princeton Day School baseball team trailed the Peddie School 4-0 in the second inning last Thursday one day after falling 14-12 to Hun in extra innings, Matt Nyce was confident that the Panthers would rally.

“It was pretty early in the game and we have been hitting really well,” said junior star second baseman Nyce. more

April 11, 2018

Shoppers were bundled up as they strolled through Palmer Square on Sunday. Warmer weather is predicted for later this week. Downtown Princeton merchants discuss spring trends in this week’s Town Talk on page 6. (Photo by Erica M. Cardenas)

By Anne Levin

The New Jersey Attorney General’s office released footage Monday related to the March 20 shooting incident at the Panera Bread restaurant on Nassau Street. The surveillance video shows state troopers firing the shots that killed Scott L. Mielentz, the 56-year-old Lawrenceville man who entered the eatery that morning, wielding a BB pistol. more

By Donald Gilpin

Inequity in school punishment and persistently high rates of suspension and expulsion for students of color and students with special needs have been a problem at many schools across the country and a controversial issue locally, including a complaint filed with the Princeton Civil Rights Commission just last January.

Rutgers University Psychology Professor Anne Gregory, a national expert on the subject of restorative justice, equity in school discipline, and community-building will speak to a gathering Thursday, April 12 at 7 p.m. in the John Witherspoon Middle School (JWMS) auditorium. more

By Anne Levin

Princeton Council voted to adopt the $65 million budget for 2018 at its meeting on Monday night, April 9, first approving an amendment that would increase the use of surplus funds by $1 million.

Of that $1 million, $626,000 is to pay down debt that was authorized in 2018. The remaining $372,000 reduces the tax levy, with no increase from last year to this year. more

BACK IN THE DAY: The Dinky train stop used to be closer to town, near Blair Arch on the Princeton University campus, as this archival photo from the Historical Society of Princeton’s program at Princeton Public Library shows. (Collection of Historical Society of Princeton)

By Anne Levin

Back in 1910, you could end up paying a fine if you got caught spitting while riding the trolley between Trenton and Princeton.

“Any person who shall expectorate or spit on the floor, seat, or platform of any trolley passenger car in this state shall be deemed and adjudged to be a disorderly person, and upon conviction shall be subjected to a fine of not more than Ten Dollars for each offense,” reads a yellowed dispatch from the Trenton and Mercer County Traction Corporation. The warning notice is just one of the curious artifacts in a special exhibit going on display the evening of Tuesday, April 17, at Princeton Public Library’s Discovery Center. more