January 17, 2018

FARM TO SCHOOL: It is programs like this one, which brought Stacey Moore, center, from Terhune Orchards to Johnson Park Elementary School last October, that have won Princeton School Gardens Cooperative coveted “Top Tomato” status from the New Jersey Department of Agriculture. This picture was taken last October, when Moore brought Empire and Cortland apples from the orchard for students to sample. The kids also got a chance to season the apples to their own taste.

By Anne Levin

When it comes to the subject of food literacy, Princeton — specifically, the Princeton School Gardens Cooperative — earns high marks. The 12-year-old nonprofit was recently awarded “Top Tomato” status by the New Jersey Department of Agriculture for its work familiarizing local school children with locally-grown produce. more

By Anne Levin

Since graduating from Princeton University in 2005, Julia Ioffe has earned a reputation as a highly respected journalist in her field. Specializing in Russian politics, she covers national security and foreign policy topics for The Atlantic, and lists Politico, The New Yorker, and The New Republic on her resume.

On January 23, Ioffe will return to campus for a discussion, open to the public, from 4:30-6 p.m. in McCosh 50. Trading thoughts with her on Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin, and Russia will be fellow international journalist Deborah Amos, a visiting Ferris Professor of Journalism and lecturer in the Humanities Council at the University. more

January 10, 2018

By Anne Levin

Since the December 27 fire at the Griggs Farm complex that took one life and displaced 35 residents, the local community has rallied to donate funds, food, clothing, and household items. An anonymous couple offered to make a matching gift of $36,000.

Now, the call is out for housing options. more

By Anne Levin

After 13 years on Witherspoon Street, the Lisa Jones shop is closing. The clothing and home store will shut its doors in mid-February, it was revealed Monday, making it the latest in a line of small businesses to recently announce their departure from Princeton.

Lisa Jones follows Hulit’s Shoes and Savory Spice Shop in its exit from the downtown. The Peacock Inn on Bayard Lane closed its restaurant January 1, but remains a hotel. CoolVines, a neighbor of Savory Spice Shop on Spring Street, has announced it will close early this year, but is opening new stores in Jersey City and Newark. CoolVines already has one store in Jersey City. more

By Anne Levin

Princeton Council welcomed new members Leticia Fraga and David Cohen at its annual reorganization meeting on January 2. Outgoing members Bernie Miller and Jo Butler had a chance to address the public and their colleagues one last time before stepping down from the dais. Mayor Liz Lempert also delivered remarks. more

January 3, 2018

By Anne Levin

A two-alarm fire that started Wednesday night, December 27, on the top floor of a three-story apartment building at the Griggs Farm complex on Billie Ellis Lane, took the life of a 73-year-old woman and displaced 35 residents. Larisa Bartone, who lived at 21 Billie Ellis Lane, died in the fire. An investigation into the cause of the blaze was ongoing at press time last Friday.

The Princeton Police Department, Princeton Fire Department, Princeton First Aid and Rescue Squad, and multiple fire departments from the area responded to the scene. It was brought under control in about 45 minutes, said Robert Gregory, director of Princeton’s Office of Emergency Management. more

By Anne Levin

A 116-acre property in Hopewell Township dating back more than two centuries has been preserved, linking three counties and boosting the total acreage that D&R Greenway Land Trust has preserved since 1989 to 20,000 acres.

The historic Schwinn farm on Hopewell-Amwell Road is near the historic Lindbergh estate and the 700-acre Sourlands Ecosystem Preserve. The expanse includes about 20 acres open to the public, and its trails will connect to a large network of neighboring protected lands. more

FROM DIFFERENT SIDES: Ashley Wright, left, and Lewis Maltby will discuss their experiences during the Vietnam War on Wednesday, January 10, at Princeton Public Library. The discussion will follow the screening of the fourth episode of the documentary “The Vietnam War.” (Photo by Hannah Schmidl)

By Anne Levin

After watching the initial episode of the Ken Burns/Lynn Novick documentary The Vietnam War at Princeton Public Library last month, Lewis Maltby was leaving the library’s Newsroom when he was approached by a man who looked to be of a similar age. The man asked Maltby if, like him, he had served in Vietnam. more

December 27, 2017

By Anne Levin and Donald Gilpin

Much of the news in Princeton in 2017 arose in response to actions and initiatives emanating from Washington. It was a year full of political activity, with rallies and demonstrations taking place in Princeton almost weekly.

Immediately following the inauguration of President Donald Trump on January 20, a number of Princeton residents, including at least three Council members, joined more than 6,000 marching in Trenton for women’s rights, civil rights, and other issues. Many in Princeton also expressed concern for arts and education, with cuts threatened for the National Endowment for the Arts and National Endowment for the Humanities. more

December 20, 2017

By Anne Levin

New Jersey’s State Leasing and Space Utilization Committee Monday approved a controversial state office buildings project in Trenton that has been vigorously opposed by some city residents, business owners, and some members of the local government. The three-member committee voted unanimously to allow the development plan for state office buildings, which would tear down two existing government buildings and relocate them outside of the central downtown area. more

READING AND SHARING: People & Stories’ Crossing Borders program at the Bo Robinson facility in Trenton has been as rewarding for participants, including Libby Rainey, far left, and Ted Fetter, far right, as it has for clients.

By Anne Levin

For the past 31 years, People & Stories has been pairing clients of the Rescue Mission of Trenton, the Albert M. “Bo” Robinson Assessment & Treatment Center, and other Trenton facilities, with trained volunteers for reading, discussion, and sharing of literary short stories. Chief among the organization’s initiatives is Crossing Borders With Literature, which aims specifically to bridge gaps between members of the urban and suburban population. more

A VETERAN’S BEST FRIEND: Jeff Mullins, a veteran who has suffered from PTSD and an officer of Rebuilding Warriors, credits his service dog, Zoey, with helping him cope with civilian life.

By Anne Levin

A year and a half ago, the Lawrence Township dog daycare Camp Bow Wow held a small fundraiser for Rebuilding Warriors, a nonprofit that matches service dogs with veterans diagnosed as amputees and those with post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) or traumatic brain injury (TBI). The event raised some money. And it made Louise McKeown, the camp’s owner, think about doing more. more

December 13, 2017

By Anne Levin

A lot has changed since Princeton Council adopted the Sustainable Princeton Community Plan in 2009.

The former Borough and Township have consolidated. Sustainable Princeton has become an independent nonprofit organization. But the plan’s aim of addressing the town’s environmental impact, and developing a long-term strategy toward achieving a truly sustainable community, have remained the same. more

By Anne Levin

At its meeting Monday evening, December 11, members of Princeton Council had a chance to question Princeton University administrators about the school’s plans for expansion over the next 10 years. Originally announced last April, an updated version of the proposal, with some new details, was released last week.

While generally enthusiastic about the ambitious framework for several development projects that will accommodate a larger undergraduate student body and reach beyond the current campus to University-owned property south of Lake Carnegie, the governing body posed questions about the project’s size, scope, and relationship to the town. more

By Anne Levin

Last Saturday’s snowstorm turned Princeton into a picture-perfect winter scene. But it was no gift to area retailers. The expected holiday shopping crowds were scared away by the weather, which turned out to be less of a threat than anticipated.

Despite the slowdown, shopkeepers are hoping to recoup in the two weekends left before December 25. “The snow was beautiful, but it actually kept people away,” said Rob Menapace, owner of Homestead Princeton on Palmer Square’s Hulfish Street. “Year after year, Princeton is ranked as one of the top 10 Christmas towns in the state. It’s a magical kind of place. So it was strange. But there were five weekends this year between Thanksgiving and Christmas, so perhaps people just have more time. I think we’ll see a rush in the coming weeks. I hope so.” more

December 6, 2017

By Anne Levin

Rider University president Gregory Dell’Omo sent a letter this week to faculty, staff, and students of Westminster Choir College updating them on the state of the school’s proposed transition to its new, as-yet-unnamed operator. There wasn’t much to report.

“In response to questions, we said at the time that we felt it was important for a number of reasons to have a term sheet in place with the partner before introducing them to our community, and we hoped to have that term sheet in place in approximately 30 days from that time,” reads the letter, referring to meetings that were held a month ago with the college community. “While we are making good progress, we do not yet have agreement on a term sheet. Consequently, we are not yet in a position to introduce the partner to you.” more

By Anne Levin

Concerns about the continuing problem of parking in Princeton brought residents to a forum held by Princeton Future last Saturday, at Princeton Public Library. The gathering was the latest in a series of discussions on the issue, specifically related to a municipal parking study Princeton Council will consider adopting at a coming meeting. more

JOIN THE CLUB: Charter Club, designed in 1913 by Philadelphia architect Arthur Meigs, is among the palatial Princeton University eating clubs profiled in a new book by local author and historian Clifford Zink. Meigs was a member of Charter Club and the Class of 1903.

By Anne Levin

Back in the mid-19th century when Princeton University was still called The College of New Jersey, undergraduates had a hard time finding a decent meal. This gastronomic inadequacy regularly sent students to local taverns and inns, much to the disapproval of faculty at Nassau Hall. more

November 29, 2017

By Anne Levin

Just what signing a resolution to support the North America Climate Summit Charter would mean to the town was the subject of a debate at a meeting of Princeton Council on Monday, November 27. After much discussion, the governing body voted four to one in favor of the measure.

In reaction to President Trump’s decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris Agreement, cities and
communities across the country have committed themselves to supporting the accord on a local basis. Princeton Council passed a resolution in support of the agreement and that committed to development of a Climate Action Plan as part of its 2017 goals and priorities. A summit of mayors from across the country will be held December 4-5 in Chicago. more

Harold T. Shapiro

By Anne Levin

When considering speakers for the fourth annual Kenneth and Audrey Gould Lecture at Princeton Public Library, Audrey Gould had a feeling that Harold T. Shapiro, former president of Princeton University, would be a perfect fit.

The lecture series is given in honor of Kenneth Gould, who died three years ago. A psychiatrist and psychoanalyst, Gould knew Shapiro, who was president of the University from 1988 to 2001. Currently, Shapiro is a member of the executive committee and associated faculty of the Princeton Environmental Institute Center for Environmental Research, Education, and Outreach. “Dr. Gould would have been very much interested and affected by what is going on with the environment, especially in regard to children. So I know he would have approved,” said Audrey Gould.  more

COME TO THE CABARET: Soprano Karyn Levitt brings the music of 20th century Austrian composer Hanns Eisler to the forefront in “Will There Still Be Singing? A Hanns Eisler Cabaret,” at Princeton University this Friday.

By Anne Levin

It was her fondness for the music of Kurt Weill that introduced soprano and actress Karyn Levitt to the works of another composer of Weill’s era, Hanns Eisler. It wasn’t love at first hearing. But Levitt, who will perform a program of Eisler’s works at Princeton University on Friday, December 1, soon began to fall under the spell of his 12 tone, modernist style. more

November 22, 2017

RALLYING FOR READING: Grace Freundlich is shooting for the Girl Scouts’ highest honor with her program that places kids’ books at summer camps and community pools, then donates them to libraries that need them.

By Anne Levin

Scouting has been a part of Grace Freundlich’s life since she was in kindergarten. Now a senior at Stuart Country Day School of the Sacred Heart, the 17-year-old has had her eye on the prize — the Girl Scouts’ coveted Gold Award — for years.

“I always knew I’d do the Gold Award,” Grace said in a recent phone conversation. “At the end of my freshman year, I was on my way to a Scout troop camping weekend, and my Mom and I were brainstorming ideas. She asked me what my passions were, and I said reading, camping, and swimming. And I thought, what about a way of combining them?” more

SPECTACULAR SOUND: The Lee Music Performance and Rehearsal Room at the new Lewis Center for the Arts is a revelation to Michael Pratt, conductor of the Princeton University Orchestra, and the students who are members.

By Anne Levin

Richardson Auditorium in Alexander Hall, the historic building on the Princeton University campus, has played host to prestigious orchestras, chamber groups, and numerous other cultural attractions throughout its 131-year history. Chief among them is the Princeton University Orchestra, conducted since 1977 by director Michael Pratt.

Traditionally, the orchestra has held rehearsals on the Richardson stage. But upcoming concerts December 7 and 8 will mark the first time that the 100-plus ensemble has rehearsed in the Lee Music Performance and Rehearsal Room, the acoustically flexible, state-of-the-art space in the University’s recently opened $330 million Lewis Center for the Arts. more

November 17, 2017

By Anne Levin

In 2011, photographer Amanda Lucidon was covering an event in Washington when she happened to meet Pete Souza, the chief photographer of the Obama White House. She had no idea at the time, but it was an introduction that would change her life.

“Two years later, he called and asked me if I was interested in applying for a photography job at the White House,” said Lucidon. “Of course I said yes. I was hired, and my assignment was to spend most of my time photographing Michelle Obama. I also got to cover the president from time to time. It all feels like a dream to me, that it even happened.” more

November 15, 2017

By Anne Levin

Princeton Council member Heather Howard has been named to Governor-elect Phil Murphy’s transition team. Howard is among seven who will serve on the Healthcare committee. Also named is Linda Schwimmer, a member of Princeton’s Board of Health. more