June 5, 2013
FINEST FLOORS: “All the people — our installers, our sales force, everyone — have great experience and integrity. The company is all of us. We know why customers come here. They want the work done correctly the first time. We don’t do a job incorrectly. We provide one-on-one service and build up trust.” Joe Rossi (left) partner in Regent Floor Covering, is shown with operations manager Christina Hughes, sales manager Russell Vizzini, and partner Jay Kuti.

FINEST FLOORS: “All the people — our installers, our sales force, everyone — have great experience and integrity. The company is all of us. We know why customers come here. They want the work done correctly the first time. We don’t do a job incorrectly. We provide one-on-one service and build up trust.” Joe Rossi (left) partner in Regent Floor Covering, is shown with operations manager Christina Hughes, sales manager Russell Vizzini, and partner Jay Kuti.

Family businesses are not the norm these days. Once upon a time, such independently-owned operations dotted the retail landscape. Now it is a tribute to the outstanding reputation, knowledge, and skill of Regent Floor Covering that it is one of a selected number of such businesses not only still going strong, but celebrating its 50th anniversary this year.

Established in 1963 by Felix Rossi and his partners, it is located at the Pennington Square Shopping center, Route One north in Pennington. It has a long history of satisfying customers who have remained loyal patrons over the years.

“Some of our customers are third generation,” says Joe Rossi, son of the founder, and now partner with Jay Kuti. “They know they can count on us. We have set a higher standard for quality service, and we strive to uphold our customers’ expectations.”

Mr. Rossi really learned the business from the inside out, coming in on weekends and after school as a boy, experiencing the full spectrum of the operation, including installation. He joined the business full-time in 1985, and became partner 20 years ago.

Complete Selection

Customers, who are from all over the Princeton and Pennington area, find a complete selection of floor covering, including carpet and area rugs, hardwood, ceramic tile, stone, marble, and slate, vinyl, and laminates. Regent carries a wide range of products including the finest quality lines in all categories.

“We are set apart not only by the quality of our product, but because we sell, install, and service it,” adds Mr. Rossi. “In carpeting, the biggest thing today is the softness of the yarn. It’s both soft and durable, and people really like this.”

“It’s especially popular in the bedroom, living room, and den,” points out operations manager Christina Hughes. “Hardwood floors are also favored in living rooms, and we are seeing wider widths, with more texture.”

Hardwood laminates are big sellers now, add Mr. Rossi and Ms. Hughes. “In the bathroom and kitchen, porcelain tile can have a wood look. It doesn’t matter if it gets wet. It has become very popular in the last few years.”

Tile continues to be in demand with many customers, and for a variety of rooms. Regent Floor has a tremendous selection, with many sample floor designs on display in the attractive and spacious showroom.

“The diversity of the products within tile alone is incredible,” says Ms. Hughes. “Granite is very popular for countertops, porcelain and ceramic for floors, and also slate and marble. River stone is in demand for shower floors now, too. It’s a very textured look. We have products and tile that have a rustic to a more modern motif.”

Smooth and Polished

“Marble is available in different finishes, including textured for the floor and smooth and polished for the walls. Glass tile is offered in many designs and is often popular for accent. The design glass tile is a favorite for borders, but can also be used for entire wall tile, especially in the bathroom.”

Kitchens frequently feature laminates and tile, adds Mr. Rossi. “The latest is LVT — luxury vinyl tile. It can look like wood or stone, and is very durable. This has become very popular, and the price is right.”

Man-made and natural tile comes from all over the world, he and Ms. Hughes report. The color range is huge, with choices for every home decor and design.

In addition to floor covering, Regent offers a variety of window treatments, from shades to shutters, and in many styles and designs. Cordless, pleated, vertical, room-darkening — all are available.

As the company has evolved and expanded, it has really become a one-stop-shopping destination, especially by virtue of its remodeling and renovation capabilities. “The latest expansion was about 10 years ago, when we went into complete kitchen and bath remodeling,” reports Mr. Rossi. “It has been very successful. We were already doing backsplashes and countertops, and the customers really pushed us into it. They didn’t want to deal with all the different contractors. Now, we can do it all for them. We have in-house carpenters, plumbers, etc. — all the specialists.”

Regent is also known for carpet, tile, and grout cleaning, he adds. “Carpets should have a professional cleaning every 18 months and every three or four years for tile. We also do rug binding and repair. We provide service for everything we sell. We also do commercial as well as residential work, including stores, businesses, offices, restaurants, etc.”

New Products

Regent’s clients have included Gillespie Advertising, The Ferry House, Merrill Lynch, Chapin School, Princeton Theological Seminary, Princeton Township, and Princeton University, among others.

The Regent team, including 20 staff members, makes a point to attend shows and seminars around the U.S. in order to keep up-to-date with advances and new products.

There is a wide price range, and Regent works hard to be as affordable as possible, says Mr. Rossi. “We have something for everyone’s budget, and we will work with people to find the right product in their price range. We can offer flexible financing options.”

“We also have special sales periodically,” adds Ms. Hughes. “We will have promotions in May in connection with our 50th anniversary.”

Mr. Rossi has noticed a number of changes in his more than three decades in the business. The biggest change has been customer knowledge, he reports. “People are more informed than ever. They have done research on the internet, and it makes it easier for us. Because they have that knowledge, they appreciate a company that knows what it is doing and has integrity. After 50 years in the same community, we have earned the customers’ trust.

“I enjoy seeing a project come together,” he continues, “and seeing the customer be so pleased with an outcome that was above and beyond their expectations. And it is never dull! Every day is different, every job is different, every customer is different.”

“We surround ourselves with complete knowledge of our products,” points out Ms. Hughes. “I look forward to continuing our relationship with the customers and being able to offer so many product choices for them.”

Regent Floor Covering is open Monday, Tuesday, Friday 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Wednesday and Thursday 9 to 8, Saturday 10 to 4. (609) 737-2466. Website: www.regentfloorcovering.com.

May 29, 2013

TT Clemons Owens Clemons Anderson

Shoneasia: “Honoring all of our fallen soldiers and everyone who has fought for us and our country so we can be here today. This day means a whole lot.”

—(from left) Candice Clemons, Deanna Owens, Sadonia Clemons, and Shoneasia Anderson, Trenton Central High School

 TT Anna Tracy Kribs

“My father was a veteran, so it’s always special to me to honor those that are willing to go out and fight for our country and for all that they do.”

—Tracy Kribs with daughter, Anna, Princeton

 TT Marilyn Tom Heebink

“We are here honoring our son-in-law who died three years ago. He was a Marine captain. Our daughter and our two grandchildren are marching in the parade today.”

—Marilyn and Tom Heebink, Montgomery

 TT Teena Cahill

“It means that there are a lot of people who risk their lives so we can have this country. It reminds me that we need to honor them and also remember that there are many ways to be a patriot. Risking your life for this country is beyond what most people do and to these people we owe a huge debt.”

—Dr. Teena Cahill, Princeton

 TT Willie Mae Tadlock

“It means that we are honoring the dead. My sister and I use to come to this parade every year until she died in 2000. This is the first parade I have come to since she died.”

—Willie Mae Tadlock, Princeton

 TT Tom Doyle Cynthia Miller

“Memorial day is a day to honor all of the men and women who have served our country in war after war over the centuries.”

—Tom Doyle, Robbinsville and Cynthia Miller, Lawrenceville


To the editor:

Imagine a child trying to learn, study and play when he or she is inadequately nourished and distracted by hunger every day. The negative effects of chronic hunger on children are particularly acute in the classroom, and pose immense educational challenges.

Over 400 children in our Princeton Public Schools — approximately one out of eight students — experience hunger and food insecurity first-hand. While they are provided with meals on weekdays during the school year by the school breakfast and lunch programs, these children are at greatest risk over the weekends, when there may not be enough food in the home.

Send Hunger Packing (SHP) is a grassroots, public-private initiative in Princeton that aims to send these children home from school on Fridays with a backpack full of kid-friendly, nutritionally sound food to ensure that they have meals over the weekend. For just $31,000, SHP can feed every hungry child in grades K-5 on weekends for the next school year — or just $160 per child.

Join us for our inaugural fundraising event on Sunday, June 9 at 4 p.m. at the Garden Theater in Princeton. Send Hunger Packing will proudly present the critically-acclaimed documentary film A Place at the Table, featuring Jeff Bridges and Top Chef Tom Coliccchio, and host a discussion afterwards with the film’s co-director Lori Silverbush. Ticket prices start at $50. To purchase, or to make a donation, please visit sendhungeroacking.ticketleap.com. 100 percent of your ticket price will go directly to fighting hunger in Princeton.

These food-filled backpacks will make an immeasurable difference in the lives and education of our community’s children. As school board members, we urge you to support this important cause, which depends almost entirely on private donations. No child in our schools should ever suffer from hunger, and we know that by nourishing the neediest children in our public schools, we give them a chance to learn and thrive in school and in life.

Molly Chrein, Andrea Spalla

Members of the Board of Education

of the Princeton Public Schools

To the Editor:

AvalonBay’s hospital site redevelopment plan involves fitting 280 residential units into a site that’s relatively small in comparison to the surrounding neighborhood. Look closely at the illustration that depicts the difference in size between the surrounding neighborhoods and the hospital site. Then imagine squeezing all of the surrounding units from either neighborhood, and adding many more, into the hospital site:

1. The total number of existing dwelling units in the outlined portion of the John Witherspoon neighborhood represents only 72 percent of the 280 units proposed by AvalonBay.

2. The total number of existing dwelling units in the outlined portion of the Jefferson-Moore-Harris-Carnahan neighborhood represents only 58 percent of the 280 units proposed by AvalonBay.

Consider what impact shoehorning a large number of units into a small site will have on traffic, infrastructure, schools, and the environment. This development will forever change the fabric of our community and neighborhood. There are no do-overs on this one. I encourage people to get informed and involved by attending the Planning Board meetings on June 27, July 11, July 18, and July 25.

Kim Frawley

Jefferson Road


To the Editor:

We welcomed and appreciated the recent presentation given by AvalonBay at Community Park School.

New developments often cause controversy. In this case, it is evident that AvalonBay has responded to many of the concerns of neighbors and interested parties. Modifications that were suggested have been incorporated into the revised plans.

As longtime Princeton residents, we believe that the AvalonBay development will be an enhancement to the town. We are particularly pleased that 20 percent of the project will be dedicated to affordable housing.

It is our hope that the approval process proceeds quickly and without obstacles.

Charlie and Shelly Yedlin

Beech Hill Circle

To the Editor:

Affordable housing units in AvalonBay’s new plan appear not to be equitably distributed throughout the development. AvalonBay must correct its error or shortsightedness before the Planning Board holds hearings on the application. The corporation should announce appropriate corrections to the public.

Fully 68 percent of the affordable units (38 out of 56) are located on the two bottom floors. 27 percent (15) face north towards the concrete garage (Site Plan, sheets A-101 through A-104); the garage is barely concealed by trees for only part of its length (Landscape Plan, sheet 6). Residents in these northerly units will be in the darkest segment of the development — disturbed by traffic, illuminated by car headlights at night. The dark view from windows was indicated by Tom Karman, speaking for AvalonBay at the first public showing of plans on 5/22/13, when he euphemistically called the street-level walkway between Building 1 (which is an enclosed cube) and the garage a “shade garden.” No affordable units face the more desirable (because private) interior courtyard of Building 1, called a “back yard for residents.”

Furthermore, no affordable units are now designated for any of the three detached townhouses (12 units, 4 in each). Of the 9 percent of units (5) located in Building 2, whose south side opens onto the public park, none has direct access to the park (sheet A-101).

Current plans should be revised. Tenants in affordable units must not be penalized because they cannot afford market-rate units.

Princeton culture does not sanction denial of equal access. AvalonBay has an obligation to redistribute the affordable housing units, voluntarily, before all members of the Planning Board and municipal staff insist on this change. COAH practices require that affordable units be located in such a manner that the income level of tenants cannot be recognized by a glance at their doorways or, indeed, their income “floor.” Affordable units should be indiscernible from market-rate units.

While such a redistribution may chip a little from the enormous profit AvalonBay may gain, the corporation must honor its public image and the values it stands for. Indeed, their 2011 Sustainability Report states, “AvalonBay employs a diverse base of associates and does not tolerate discrimination or harassment” (page 19). The company should practice in Princeton what it mandates in its own workplace community. Respect for all tenants requires no less.

Jon Vogel, an AvalonBay vice president for development and this project’s manager, needs to do for affordable housing distribution what he has done for “green building” in this development — EnergyStar certification with demonstrated compliance with LEED Silver for Homes (“and maybe more,” he said on 5/22/13), rain-gardens, and the possibility of using grey water (as at Copperwood, the LEED-Silver development on Bunn Drive).

I commend these measures (though more should be done, particularly in salvaging materials from the old hospital). Heeding the claims of social equity requires equal attentiveness.

Jane Buttars

Dodds Lane

To the Editor:

The Blue Point Grill has received much acclaim in our community as a premier seafood restaurant. Due in part to its deserved popularity, seventy-seven undergraduate students in an environmental policy course at Princeton University spent weeks preparing a comprehensive report on the sustainability of Blue Point Grill’s menu. This is an important issue because numerous studies have documented the extensive harm to ocean ecosystems caused by overfishing, bycatch, and other unsustainable practices.

Although we were pleased to find that 30 percent of the menu entrees used local, sustainably-sourced seafood and 50 percent used seafood that has the potential to be harvested sustainably with minimal environmental damage, we are concerned about the remaining 20 percent that consists of unsustainably harvested species.

We have mailed and emailed our report to the restaurant, and we have sought a meeting with the management of Blue Point Grill to discuss our findings and recommendations. Unfortunately, despite these efforts, the management has been unwilling to schedule a meeting.

We believe that by removing the unsustainable items on its menu, Blue Point Grill can live up to its advertised commitment toward sustainability. At the very least, we would like the restaurant to flag the sustainable entrees on its menu so that diners can make an informed choice. We urge customers to help in this effort by requesting information from their server about the environmental impact of their dishes.  And, as always, we are eager to meet with the management of Blue Point Grill to discuss our report.

Cecelia Coffey, Sarah Jeong,

Gina Talt and 53 signatories

Editor’s note: The Blue Point Grill submitted the following response:

The Blue Point Grill has always enjoyed a healthy dialogue with our customers on the subject of sustainable seafood practices and it is a topic we live with every day. It came to our attention that the Princeton Ecology Department conducted a study on our restaurant and our menu and we were disappointed not to be able to schedule a follow up meeting.

Our company has developed long lasting relationships with fisherman & purveyors all over the world who work within the guidelines and are certified by the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC).  Every MSC certified fishery has demonstrated that it maintains sustainable fish stocks, minimizes environmental impacts, and has proven to be a successful management program. We review reports weekly set by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and their report, Fish Watch is available in the lobby of Blue Point Grill for your convenience.

In business for over 30 years now, we take pride in the seafood that we offer and it’s sustainability for ours and future generations. By dealing with only certified purveyors who abide by all government fishing regulations and catch quotas, we stand by our menu and will continue supplying the Princeton area with the best seafood on the planet!

Jack Morrison

The Blue Point Grill

To the Editor:

The New Jersey Water Supply Authority (NJWSA), which has responsibility for maintaining the supply of water from the D&R Canal, is planning to dredge the roughly eight-mile section of the canal between Kingston and East Millstone over three years beginning 12/15/2013 and ending 2/10/2017. The goal is to improve the water flow along the canal which is now impeded by silt accumulated over more than 50 years. While we support the goal of this project and recognize the NJWSA’s efforts to meet the needs of many constituencies, we are concerned about aspects that will impact Griggstown and Rocky Hill particularly.

The plan presented at a Public Meeting by the NJWSA on May 13 and available at www.njwsa.org/html/
canal_dredging.html, is to use hydraulic dredging, a giant underwater vacuum cleaner on a barge sucking a slurry of silt and canal water into a pipeline through which it will be pumped to a single “staging area” covering several acres on a property adjoining Canal Road approximately half a mile north of its intersection with Route 518 in Rocky Hill. There the silt will be separated and dried, then transported by truck to other sites for use as fill. The amount of silt to be removed is huge — estimated at 240,000 cubic yards (cu-yd), or 24,000 loads in 10 cu-yd dump trucks. The silt would cover the area of 10 football fields to a depth of over 12 feet. This staging area will essentially be an industrial facility and transfer station located in a semi-rural, residential area.

All the heavy trucks needed to remove the silt will have to pass along Canal Road. A waiver will be required to allow the trucks to exceed its present 4-ton limit which exists for a good reason: the road is narrow, uneven, and poorly constructed. The trucking will take place over 320 work days in three periods from August each year through the following January. This means that at least 75 standard dump-truck trips per day will be needed — a truck load leaving the site every 6½ minutes. In addition to the impact of the truck traffic on residents and commuters using Canal Road, there will be noise from the pumps needed to move the slurry, and odors from exposure of the silt to the air.

Under this plan, Griggstown and Rocky Hill will bear the brunt of this project for three years. We urge the NJWSA to relocate the staging area to a site with suitable road access not passing through residential areas. At the previous public meetings on the plan, other possible staging areas had been under consideration, including, at the southern end, areas in or adjacent to the Trap Rock quarry and asphalt plant on Route 603 (Kingston-Rocky Hill Road) where there are already roads capable of carrying the heavy truck traffic which connect to major transportation arteries.

We also ask residents of nearby communities to contact the NJWSA (by email at info@njwsa.org) to express their concerns about this, and any other, aspect of the plan.

Michael Bell

Coppermine Road

Spence Wilcox

Old Georgetown Road

Marc Knowlton

Canal Road

To the Editor:

We are writing to enthusiastically endorse Bill Humes’s proposal in a letter to Town Topics [“Princeton’s Dogs Need Their Own Space,” May 22] to create a dog park in Princeton. Every dog owner in our town feels their pet’s urgent tug on the leash that means, “Let me run! Let me run!” But we are required to deny them that exercise, caught as we are between the natural needs of a dog and the restrictive covenants of a community. The net effect is that we forbid them any physical activity more stimulating than a human-pace stroll, when they are just dying to enjoy the kind of energetic exercise we regularly engage in ourselves.

Bill Humes’s suggestion of creating a dog park is a straightforward, simple, easily achieved resolution of this conflict. A dedicated dog park does not intrude on or defile the recreational spaces others use in different ways. Many, many other communities have long since established such facilities. Now it’s our turn.

Eliot and Patti Daley

Dorann Avenue

To the Editor:

The Princeton recording studio of Learning Ally held its annual Record-A-Thon the week of May 13 to 17 at its facilities on Roszel Road in West Windsor. Our dedicated volunteers from all over New Jersey and Eastern Pennsylvania put in extra hours to record, check, and edit hundreds of hours of audio and hybrid audio/e-books for Learning Ally’s members who cannot effectively read standard print due to a visual impairment or print disability such as dyslexia.

As in past years, this event would not be a success without generous donations of food and refreshment from our Princeton-area business community including Alchemist and Barrister of Princeton, On the Border of West Windsor, Hoagie Haven of Princeton, Slice of Princeton, The Bent Spoon of Princeton, McCaffrey’s of West Windsor, Wegman’s of West Windsor, Brother’s Pizza of West Windsor, Salt Creek Grille of Plainsboro, Medical Packaging, Incorporated of Ringoes, and Business Bistro of New Brunswick.

Since our inception in the area as Recording for the Blind, we would never have been able to positively impact the educational and professional careers of thousands of people across the country without the continued support of the Princeton-area business community. For all of the volunteers, staff, and members of Learning Ally, we thank you for you continued generosity.

Barbara Greene, Dave Gravelle,

Tony Gruenewald, Christine Ranaghan, and Deirdre Ryan

To the Editor:

On behalf of the Board of Trustees and the staff of the Princeton Education Foundation, I would like to thank everyone in the Princeton community who supported our “Be True to Your School” Spring Gala and Silent Auction. We raised almost $50,000 net that will directly benefit our public schools’ teachers and students and will further our goal of supporting excellence in education in the Princeton Public Schools. Since its inception, the Princeton Education Foundation has contributed over $1,200,000 to the Princeton Public Schools for capital improvements, educational programs, and teacher support.

We are especially grateful to the Princeton Education Foundation’s lead sponsors, Georgeanne Moss, The Gould Group of Wells Fargo Advisors, and The Nassau Inn, and to our other major sponsors, Bank of Princeton, Educational Testing Service, Parker McCay, PNC — Palmer Square Office, Princeton Review, Project Builders General Contractors and Construction Managers, and St. Peter’s Healthcare System.

Thanks also go to sponsors Anne Skalka and Associates, CPAs, Beatrice Bloom, Weichert Realtors, Branding Science, Charles Schwab, Dr. Tyl and Dr. Fogarty, Issues Management, LLC, Princeton Chevrolet, Princeton Porsche, Princeton Radiology, Princeton Tutoring, BluePrint Research Group, Dessert Boutique, Gold Buyers at the Mall, Greg’s Landscaping, Lear and Pennepacker, LLP, Lindt Chocolate, Mike’s Barber Shop, Monday Morning Flower Company, Princeton Automobile Company, Princeton Eye Group, Princeton Fitness and Wellness Center, Princeton University Store, Redding’s Plumbing & Heating, Robert J. Lopez, The Geller Real Estate Group of Gloria Nilson Realtors, Spiezle Architectural Group, Inc., and Studio Hillier. Finally, we would like to acknowledge the support of our Grant Donors and Operational Sponsors, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Church and Dwight, David Mathey Foundation, Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc., PNC Bank Foundation, and Terra Momo Restaurant Group. Our silent auction was a big success thanks to donations from over 100 people and businesses. We are also grateful to have the support of many individual benefactors and patrons.

We would like to recognize the hard work of our Gala committee, the group of dedicated volunteers that planned and executed this year’s event. Led by Co-Chairs Jean-Anne Madden, Shazia Manekia, and Grace Normandin, the committee included Molly Chrein, Pooja Datt, Nicole Doran, Edie Kelly, Jan Pierce, Sara Schaeffer, Ronica Sethi, Aman Shergill, Karin Siciliano and Monika Suri.

Finally, we would like to extend our heartfelt gratitude to everyone in the community who participated in this important fundraiser by volunteering time, purchasing tickets, or bidding on items in our auction. Thank you for joining with us to say that our children’s public education matters!

Adrienne Rubin

Executive Director, Princeton Education Foundation

To the Editor:

McCarter Theatre’s Annual Gala Benefit on Saturday, May 18th featured a smashing performance by THE MIDTOWN MEN that had the whole theatre dancing in the aisles (literally!). McCarter is so grateful for the support offered by its donors and by the Princeton community.

The evening was great fun and it was a pleasure to see so many people enjoying themselves while supporting this great institution. Thank you to our wonderful co-chairs, Judy Scheide and Tamera Matteo and the great team at Joss and Jules Catering for all they did to create a magical event for us. Our wonderful volunteers on the gala committee did an amazing job – their dedication and vision created a truly memorable evening.

We would like thank our corporate supporters for their stalwart support of the theatre and of this event. We deeply appreciate their support. The Gold level corporate sponsors, Cure Auto Insurance, and The Gould Group of Wells Fargo Advisors, have been supporting the work of the theatre for several years and we are proud that they continue to support our gala in this way.

In addition, we would like to say thank you to our amazing team at McCarter – from our production crew to our team of interns – the entire staff had a role in creating this spectacular event and did so with great professionalism and grace.

Like so many non-profits in our region, McCarter Theatre depends on private donations to help us fulfill our mission. Through this support, we are able to offer truly world-class entertainment in Princeton at very affordable prices. We are also able to offer educational and outreach programs to students and schools in Princeton, New Brunswick, Trenton and many other school districts in our area.

Thank you!

Emily Mann,

McCarter Theatre Artistic Director,

Resident Playwright, University Place

Timothy J. Shields,

McCarter Theatre Managing Director,

91 University Place, Princeton

To the editor:

As co-chairs of the 24th annual spring benefit for the Planned Parenthood Association of the Mercer Area, we thank the hundreds of enthusiastic supporters who attended our luncheon at the Hyatt, as well as our benefit committee and the Planned Parenthood staff. With 500 guests and contributors, it was a tremendous success in raising funds in support of the services and programs of Planned Parenthood Association of the Mercer Area.

We were pleased to have as our speaker Dawn Laguens, executive vice president and chief experience officer of Planned Parenthood Federation of America.

Nationally, one in five women has turned to Planned Parenthood at some time in her life for professional, non-judgmental and confidential care. Planned Parenthood has earned this confidence as a nonprofit organization in Trenton for 80 years. The funds raised at the lunch will help ensure that our local affiliate can continue its vital work.

We urge the people of Mercer County who believe that every woman has a right to reproductive health counseling and family planning, regardless of income, to support Planned Parenthood.

Planned Parenthood’s services include life-saving cancer screenings (including breast health services and pap tests), birth control, prevention and treatment of STDs, HIV testing, vasectomy services, abortion procedures, sexual health education, information and health counseling. Planned Parenthood works every day to reduce the number of unintended pregnancies and keep women healthy.

Emily Firmenich,


Eleanor Horne,


BEST BEDS: “The addition of the mattresses, headboards, and pillows has been a nice way of diversifying what we have. It’s a perfect fit for our business, and brings in our existing customers as well as new ones.” Debbie Schaeffer, President and CEO of Mrs. G TV • Appliances • Sleep Center, is pictured in the showroom, where 16 beds are on display.

BEST BEDS: “The addition of the mattresses, headboards, and pillows has been a nice way of diversifying what we have. It’s a perfect fit for our business, and brings in our existing customers as well as new ones.” Debbie Schaeffer, President and CEO of Mrs. G TV • Appliances • Sleep Center, is pictured in the showroom, where 16 beds are on display.

Mrs. G • TV • Appliances has recently added a new level of comfort for its customers. The long-time Lawrenceville store at Baker’s Basin Road and Route One is now offering a sleep center, with several lines of Serta mattresses and pillows, as well as headboards.

“We carry Serta mattreses, the number one mattress brand in the country,” says Mrs. G President and CEO Debbie Schaeffer. “Our Serta mattresses have levels — tier 1, 2, and 3, so a great mattress can be within your price range.

“We have also set aside a special section for the mattresses away from the main activity of the store. We encourage customers to take 20 minutes and lie down to try out the different mattresses. It is very important to have a mattress that gives you the right support. Come in and try out a firm, plush, or super soft mattress.”

The Serta mattresses available at Mrs. G are i Comfort, Perfect Day i Series, Perfect Sleeper, and Smart Choice.

Memory Foam

“The Comfort model is currently the most popular,” reports Ms. Schaeffer. “It has memory foam and also a cooling gel to keep you cooler at night.”

This Cool Action™ Gel Memory Foam is designed to deliver superior pressure relief and more targeted support, while offering a cooler nights sleep. In addition, it is anti-microbial and dust mite-resistant.

The i Comfort line also includes a motorized adjustable model, allowing for raised head and foot positions. It can be comfortable for reading in bed or watching TV as well as sleeping. It is also helpful for people who need special back, neck and shoulder support or who may need a raised head position to prevent acid reflux.

The Perfect Day i Series technology combines the exclusive Cool Action™ Gel Memory Foam with the most advanced Duet™ Coil individually wrapped Coil Support System. This mattress also offers individual support for each sleep partner.

Serta has joined forces with the National Sleep Foundation (NSF) to introduce the all new Perfect Sleeper, the first official mattress of NSF. It is engineered with input from the NSF to help solve many of the most common causes of poor sleep.

In addition to mattresses, Mrs. G is carrying the Leggett & Platt line of headboards in contemporary and traditional styles. Available in wood and metal, they are in assorted colors. There is also a fun trundle bed, which is very popular with children. The pull out bed underneath can also be raised to the level of the top bed, creating a comfortable double bed for adults.

Cool Gel Pillow

“The head boards are very affordable at $199 and up,” says Ms. Schaeffer. “Our mattresses — twin, queen, and king — start at $559 for the Perfect Sleeper, including box spring.”

Pillows and sheets are also available, she adds. “You need a good pillow for support of the head and neck. It is important to have the right pillow, and also, it should be changed at least every two years. Among the styles we have is a cool gel pillow, offering cool comfort”

“We are partnering with the Center for Sleep Medicine at Capital Health to offer an event on May 16,” she continues. “Doctors from the Center will talk about the importance of sleep. Sleep is so necessary for your health, and so many people don’t get enough. You should sleep in a dark room, not use electronic devices before sleeping, and no alcohol two hours before going to bed.”

Mrs. G, of course, has been known for many years as the place to go for top quality refrigerators, washers and dryers, cooking appliances, including top-of-the-line outdoor grills and outdoor kitchens, dishwashers, and TVs, all at very reasonable prices.

“I really want people to realize that our prices are very competitive with the big box stores,” points out Ms. Schaeffer. “We buy collectively with 5000 independent stores from the largest buying group in the country with $14 billiion in buying power and that is how we offer excellent prices.”

Established in 1933 in Trenton by Beatrice and Abe Greenberg, the store originally focused on plumbing supplies. Over the years, it became known as Mrs. G, and evolved into a showcase for a diverse selection of fine quality brands with inviting displays and special areas for customers to browse.

Family Operation

Mrs. G continued as a family operation, when Debbie Schaeffer, the Greenbergs’ granddaughter, joined the business, and became president five years ago. While taking the business to further heights, Ms. Schaeffer emphasizes the philosophy that has always characterized Mrs. G: “taking care of the customer, having a good selection of brands in the showroom, and continuing the long tradition of supporting the community and local charities.”

The showroom has also become a popular venue for community and professional events, hosted both by Mrs. G and various other local organizations and businesses. Ms. Schaeffer and Mrs. G have received many honors and awards, including Princeton Regional Champer of Commerce Innovator of the Year Award 2011, Legacy Award for Women in Consumer Electronics 2010, Princeton YWCA Tribute to Women Award 2010, and Mercer Regional Chamber of Commerce Outstanding Small Business Award 2009, and the New Jersey Retail Merchants Association (NJRMA) 2012 Retailer of the Year.

“We believe it is very important to give back to the community and be part of the community,” explains Ms. Schaeffer. “This has always been important at Mrs. G. Also, one of the things I enjoy most is the interaction with our customers. We have so many regulars, and I love it when I can help them find the right product for their needs. And if there is ever a problem, we get them service, and work to make it happen for them. This is so important to us.”

Ms. Schaeffer has also worked hard to provide Mrs. G with the most-up-to-date and professional website available. “This is so necessary today. We realize how important it is to have a really strong social media presentation. A website is powerful. You want it to have impact and be easy to access. We update it all the time.”

Easy access is key — to the website, just as it is within Mrs. G’s 20,000 square feet of showroom The availability of so many choices under one roof is a boon to busy shoppers. As Ms. Schaeffer says, “We are a one-stop appliance, TV, and Serta mattress super store. With our large inventory, you can easily make the best selection.”

And in addition, get a good night’s sleep!

Mrs. G is open Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday 9 to 6, Sunday 11 to 5.

(609) 882-1444. Website: www.mrsgs.com.

May 22, 2013

TT Finny McCulloch

“I don’t like Lima beans, and my favorite is carrots.”
—Finny McColloch, Bordentown

TT Ariela Scheer

 “My favorite is cauliflower, and my least favorite is string beans.” —Ariela Scheer, Princeton

TT Felix Shapiro

“My favorite is broccoli. My least favorite is cabbage I think.”
—Felix Shapiro, Princeton

 TT Rachel & Silvio Soto

Rachel: “My favorite is peas. And, I don’t know what my least favorite is.”
Silvio: “My favorite is broccoli. I don’t have a least favorite.
I like them all!” —Rachel Soto and Silvio Soto, Princeton

TT Evin Moore & Luka Todorov

Evan: “Lemon sorrel and string beans are my favorite.”
Luka: “I don’t know, I like lemon sorrel.”
—Evan Moore, New York City and Luka Todorov, Princeton


Editor’s Note: The following is presented as an open letter

Dear Friends and Neighbors,

We are pleased to share with you some great news: The University Medical Center of Princeton at Plainsboro (UMCPP) has broken another record, and this time thanks to you — we can now claim the most successful capital campaign in the history of any hospital in New Jersey and of any hospital our size in the nation! Our Design for Healing Campaign raised over $171 million dollars, a record amount which is especially remarkable within the context of the recent Great Recession. The results of our campaign have allowed us to pay for over one third of the construction of our $523 million new hospital through philanthropy alone.

An important point to remember as you consider this recent achievement is that we attained this record because of you and the commitment of our 10,000 donors to making our collective visions of a new hospital not only a reality, but also a dream come true. UMCPP has swiftly become a nationally and internationally recognized landmark. Becker’s Hospital Review [www.beckershospitalreview.com/100-great-hospitals-2013/100-great-hospitals-in-america-2013.html] has just listed UMCPP among the “100 Great Hospitals in the United States,” and a steady stream of international delegations from countries such as China, Canada, Denmark, Russia, Egypt, and Poland have toured UMCPP to learn how they can design and construct their dream hospitals within their own communities.

We appreciate those in the Princeton community who have long supported the medical center. Impressively, more than 1,800 individuals, business and foundations from Princeton alone contributed to this effort. We also give special thanks to the many first-time donors and all of those who shared the vision of building a hospital with the best care, the best setting, and most advanced technology close to home.

On behalf of the Princeton HealthCare System Foundation Board of Directors, the Princeton HealthCare System Board of Trustees, our Medical Staff, and our more than 3,000 employees, we want to express our heartfelt appreciation for the community’s support. Your generosity helped to make the campaign an unprecedented success and enabled us to build a hospital designed and equipped for the future of medicine.

The success of this campaign is clearly an incredible accomplishment for our entire central New Jersey community. Together, we made a substantial investment to ensure outstanding clinical care for all our families for generations to come.

We did it! We made our dream hospital a reality — thanks to you!

Joann Heffernan Heisen, Bob Doll

Co-chairs, the Design for Healing Campaign

Barry S. Rabner

President and CEO, Princeton Health Care System

To the Editor:

A hearing on the rejection of the AvalonBay apartment proposal held last week in Trenton by Superior Court Judge Jacobson left this retired journalist in astonished disbelief and determined that the public should know what transpired. An attorney for the Princeton Citizens group began to present his brief only to be interrupted by the judge’s dramatic expression of denial, raising her arms and hands as if to repel an attacker, and repeatedly stating “I don’t understand what you are saying.” This went on for several minutes as the attorney continued, citing zoning ordinances the proposal ignored. The judge countered with her belief that they did not apply in this case. Why, I thought, if she does not understand those zoning laws did she not recuse herself?

The disagreement centered on the use of driveways in different zones and the legal need for an easement from the Board of Adjustment. The judge consistently referred to the past use of the thoroughfares as the same as in the proposed use by the applicant saying there is no difference because cars will continue to use them, even though the attorney cited language in the zoning laws that clearly defined the kind of use which required an easement and led to rejection of the project. By now it was clear the judge had already decided in favor of AvalonBay. This was substantiated by the AvalonBay attorney who, echoing the language of the judge, also referred to the past use of the site to support the claim. The judge made an appeal to common sense as the basis of her decision in effect proposing to ignore the ordinances. The Planning Board attorney also testified but it was almost impossible to hear what he said. The overall impression was that a deal had been struck before the hearing began and that its only purpose was to justify the judge’s ruling for public consumption.

Reminds me of what Tolstoy wrote, “Where the law is, no man finds justice”.

Louis Slee

Spruce Street

To the Editor:

Social and economic justice requires that AvalonBay earn LEED certification for its entire complex: LEED-Gold for neighborhoods. Maximum energy-efficiency is the only ethical solution to a Mount Laurel “inclusionary development” with 20 percent affordable housing. Addressing the needs of Princeton citizens and the demands for sustainability created by climate change meet here: in Princeton, now.

Without LEED-certification, heating and electric bills will be higher than necessary. AvalonBay must not shove those costs onto those least capable of absorbing economic damage. The corporation dare not truly claim its development as an “inherently beneficial use” if it penalizes the very tenants in affordable units with excessive utility charges resulting from inadequate insulation, building design, and construction materials.

AvalonBay’s record in LEED-certification and sustainability has been abysmal. To date, out of 4114 developments nationwide, AvalonBay has built three (3) LEED-certified and three EnergyStar-certified developments (source: AvalonBay 2011 Sustainability Report, page 7), with another 14 certifications possible. The corporation can use Princeton to improve its performance — its profit margin, its investor confidence, and its responsibility to our global ecosystem. AvalonBay’s competitors — e.g., Prologis, KB Homes, Jones Lang Lassalle — have far outstripped it in numerous awards earned from The U.S. Green Building Council and the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency. Princeton officials must ensure that “AvalonPrinceton” begin catching up here, by achieving LEED-Gold certification.

AvalonBay’s obligation to earn LEED-Gold involves real people, not “units.” If the developer builds 56 affordable units (as expected), 28 units (50 percent) must be for low-income people/families (suppose a 56-person minimum, at two people per unit). Princeton’s tenants must be protected. AvalonBay rents are already too steep for low- and very-low income families.

Furthermore, Princeton officials negotiating with AvalonBay should insist that the developer set aside 13 percent of the affordable units for tenants with “very low” incomes: 7-8 units. The huge complex will have a population nearly equal to 15 percent of the former Borough. AvalonBay is obliged to mirror and fulfill New Jersey’s housing requirements for all municipalities mandated since July 2008.

AvalonBay’s Jon Vogel is quoted as “contemplating doing this as an EnergyStar certified community, and using designs consistent with LEED for Homes” (Trenton Times, 5/14/13). AvalonBay’s website states, “All Projects [are] evaluated for LEED, Energy Star” (2011 Sustainability Report, page 8) Let’s move beyond “evaluation” and “contemplation.”

Mr. Vogel should understand the equation between energy-efficiency and social justice. At Jonathan Rose Companies he “served as general counsel working on affordable housing solutions and … the Stone Barns Center for Food & Agriculture, a farm, educational center and restaurant designed to promote sustainable community-based food production …. [He] was previously general counsel for the New York City Housing Partnership, an intermediary in the development of affordable rental and for sale housing” (source: zoominfo.com).

He must persuade corporate leadership to earn LEED-Gold in Princeton. Using LEED or Energy Star only as “guidelines” will result in substandard performance in energy-efficiency.

Princeton’s officials have responsibility for inducing AvalonBay to do the morally right, financially smart thing: match social justice and LEED-certification for the sustainability of all.

Daniel A. Harris

Dodds Lane

To the Editor:

Recently, I was able to confirm what I had already suspected. There isn’t any open space in Princeton where dogs are able to run free and exercise off leash. Every field and every public open space has a posted sign indicating “no dogs allowed or dogs must be on a leash at all times.”

Well, I own a five-year old Labrador retriever, a female named Callie. Needless to say, she is a beautiful dog and very friendly. All dogs need some form of exercise and in particular, large dogs love (and need) to run freely, chase tennis balls by the hours, and swim. Unfortunately, Callie doesn’t have any opportunity to do this form of exercise in the Princeton Community. Hard to do when tied to a six-foot leash.

When we drive by all the beautifully manicured recreation spaces and fields in Princeton, I am sure she and many other dogs would love to have their own space and feel the soft green grass beneath their feet. Perhaps, they could share some of those beautiful fields with the other groups that use them.

Or better yet, perhaps the new Princeton could provide a “dog park” — what a great idea! The number of families who have dogs increases every year and communities across the country are establishing areas where canine citizens can exercise and socialize. I believe there would be a lot of interest among Princeton residents who have dogs in a “dog friendly” park.

I have approached the recreation department personnel who were somewhat supportive but offered no clear plan of action. Could we find some area for a dog park? Other communities have them. Why not Princeton?

Bill Humes

Forester Drive

Editor’s Note: The writer was a mathematics teacher and tennis coach at Princeton High School from 1960-2000 and has been a Princeton resident for 52 years.

May 15, 2013

TT Ingrid & Marvin Reed

“I liked the photo spread on consolidation. The pictures of the Borough and the Township officials, past and present, all smiling, was just great!”
“I agree with her.” —Ingrid and Marvin Reed, Princeton

TT Eli & Ezra Broomer

“We liked the Cotsen Children’s Library.”
—Eli & Ezra Broomer, Princeton

 TT Taylor Smith

“My favorite story was the one on Jeffrey Eugenides.”
—Taylor Smith, Lawrenceville

 TT Cooper Smith

“My favorite would probably be the Paul Krugman article. I used to work for the Federal Reserve, so coming back to Princeton, with him at the University, that’s a pretty special connection for me.” —Cooper Smith, New York, N.Y.

TT Bill UrianREV 

“There are many, many good ones. I liked the one about Wayside Shrines. That’s why I came today. The articles on the new restaurants have also been very good”

—Bill Urian, Princeton

 TT Tom Stange

“Most recently, I really enjoyed reading about my good friend, Chris Harford, and his band The Wayside Shrines.”
—Tom Stange, Princeton


To the Editor:

It is an old saying — a picture is worth a thousand words — but it still rings true. This was starkly evident at the series of Planning Board meetings in the fall dedicated to the hospital site redevelopment. For weeks the applicant, AvalonBay, pressed its case using too many words, while giving the Planning Board and the public the most minimal information, particularly in regards to what the proposed project would look like once constructed. Finally, local architects took it upon themselves using their own resources to create a series of three-dimensional representations of the Avalon Bay project and its relationship to the surrounding neighborhood context. All of a sudden, after hour upon hour of testimony and public comment, the impact of this project on the neighborhood was made clear to all assembled.

This type of “evidence” should not have to be done at the expense and time of our citizens. Three-dimensional views illustrating the massing of building and landscape elements and scale relationships to surrounding context should become a submission requirement of all substantial development proposals to the Planning Board. These types of views, often called “renderings,” used to be an added burden to the design professionals who prepared the drawings for construction. However, software development over the past 15 years has transformed the way architects and other designers do their work. Now, every architectural student graduates with the skills to use advanced visualization tools.

As a practicing architect, I can attest to the routine use of simple renderings as part of the design process. Three-dimensional views offer tremendous benefits in terms of understanding and time-saving to clients and the public who are not trained in reading “floor plans.” For the hospital site redevelopment, these tools would prove invaluable in determining compliance with the MRRO Zone Ordinance’s Design Standards.

Now, AvalonBay is trying to gain approval for a revised design, but have not yet come forward with documents to allow the Planning Board or the general public to fully understand the nature of the proposal. It is time that three-dimensional representations of substantial proposed developments become a requirement of the Planning Board submission, and not just for AvalonBay, but for all future projects. This will not impose appreciable hardship on developers and in fact will help expedite the approval process. The gain for Princeton will be significant.

Evan Yassky

Hawthorne Avenue

To the Editor:

The article on the Williams Transco Pipeline Project [“Town Releases Documents On Transco Pipeline Project,” Town Topics, May 1, page 1] contains a couple of inaccuracies about the intervention process before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. First, although the pre-filing process is an extremely important phase during which the public can and should participate actively in commenting on the Transco project, FERC procedures do not allow intervention at the pre-filing stage. Parties can only intervene after Williams files its application for a certificate of public necessity and convenience with FERC.

Second, intervention before FERC is not like intervening in a court case. It does not require filing a complaint and it does not commit anyone to participating in litigation. A party should move to intervene as soon as possible after the application is filed if it might eventually want to challenge FERC’s order in court. Only intervenors have the right to request rehearing of a FERC order granting a certificate; the rehearing process is a prerequisite to a lawsuit in federal court to challenge that order. However, concerned citizens can always comment on applications without moving to intervene.

For more information on the FERC intervention process see www.ferc.gov/help/how-to/intervene.asp.

Jane P. Davenport McClintock

Senior Attorney, Delaware Riverkeeper Network

To the Editor:

Incorrect conclusions have been reached about the cause of Princeton High School’s failure to appear in the U.S. News and World Report public high school rankings this year [see page one stories May 1, May 8, Town Topics]. Once ranked tenth in New Jersey and 196th in the United States, Princeton is reported by school board and district representatives to have done more poorly this time around because the ranking system does not fully appreciate PHS’s AP program, the range of international colleges graduates attend, or the fact that, due to the school’s diverse student body, students are exceptionally likely to miss school due to religious holidays and vacations. The fact is, however, that none of these factors had any effect on Princeton’s ranking. U.S. News does not use attendance or college data in its rankings at all, and AP (or IB) participation rates do not come in until the last of three steps used to determine a school’s rank. Princeton High School failed to pass the second step, which examines the effectiveness with which a school serves its economically disadvantaged population, and were thereby rendered ineligible to receive a bronze medal or a rank.

The U.S. News data for Princeton High School and West Windsor High School South, ranked eighth in the state, is remarkably similar. The only significant differences are West Windsor’s higher minority enrollment (58 percent to PHS’s 33 percent) and the proficiency rates of the two schools’ disadvantaged students. While the proficiency rates of non-disadvantaged students at the two schools are nearly identical at around 96 percent, free and reduced lunch students at Princeton High School are far less likely to be proficient than those at West Windsor South: 65 percent of the disadvantaged students of PHS and 80 percent of those of West Windsor pass the High School Proficiency Assessment (HSPA). Consequently, the achievement gap at PHS is about twice the size of that at West Windsor. These differences put Princeton High School below the state average for economically disadvantaged student proficiency and West Windsor well above. Similarly, Montgomery High School, which has an even better disadvantaged student proficiency rate than West Windsor, was ranked 20th regardless of the fact that it has a much lower AP participation rate than PHS. I hope that readers will become aware that the true problem is not the ranking system but the school district’s apparent difficulty educating economically disadvantaged students. U.S. News’s commitment to evaluate how schools educate all students is explanation enough for Princeton High School’s ranking.

Margaret Schrayer

Spruce Street

To the Editor:

Each weekday morning as I drive to work, I pass the corner of Witherspoon and Paul Robeson and feel amazed. Where once was a beautiful garden, there now looms a brick façade. Yet in my mind’s eye, I see the garden’s radiant beauty — the sunflowers so tall as if standing sentry, the blue morning glory so mystical as to seem an apparition, and the late zinnia, a riot of color uprising at summer’s end. Now that it is springtime, I again keenly feel the absence of the garden. The presence of the absence of the garden. Where once was a garden that all the townspeople could enjoy, there is now a structure for the very rich. No longer can the people who work in town be refreshed by the garden on their lunch hours. No longer can lovers enjoy or solitaries be soothed by the beauty of the garden at night. No more the laughter of children frolicking. The garden was a transformative space. Its power was much larger than its one-fourth acre, and the magic and happiness it inspired was immeasurable. But now, where once was a gateway, there’s a brick wall.

Patricia Donahue

Hamilton Avenue

To the Editor:

On behalf of the Board of Trustees and everyone at the Princeton Senior Resource Center we would like to extend our sincere thanks to all those who helped make this year’s Brunch at Home event on April 7 such a resounding success. We met our goal of 300 baskets and had more sponsors than any other year.

First, we’d like to thank the scores of volunteers who make this unique event, now in its fifth year, possible. From the volunteers who arrive as early as 5:30 a.m. to help assemble the baskets to the drivers and their helpers who deliver the baskets by 9 a.m. There’s also our in-house team of volunteers that coordinate the orders and map out the driving routes plus the men and women who work behind the scenes sending out gift cards and soliciting donations from local area establishments.

A particular heads up goes to the Bloomberg organization which encourages employees to participate in volunteer opportunities in the community. This year 18 Bloomberg employees worked Brunch at Home. Employee’s from Bobst Center for Peace and Justice at Princeton University also volunteered to assemble baskets.

We are especially grateful for the support of our sponsors. Our annual sponsors: Acorn Glen, AARP, Princeton Windrows, and Buckingham Place. Brunch sponsors and advertisers: Wells Fargo, Brandywine Senior Living at Princeton and Pennington, Merwick Care & Rehabilitation Center, Drinker Biddle & Reath, LLP, Bear Creek Assisted Living, Avalon Assisted Living-Bridgeway Care & Rehabilitation Centers, LIFE St. Francis, Massage Envy Spa, McCaffrey’s, Dunkin Donuts Princeton, ETS/Chauncey Conference Center, IQuisine, Trader Joe’s, Bill Miller, WWFM, Olives, Memory Care Living, Green Mountain Coffee, Bagel Barn, Dave Saltzman Insurance, Robinson’s Chocolates, Wegman’s, Heidi Joseph-Fox & Roach, Roberts Florals, Alfonso’s Pizza, Main Street, Freedom Home Healthcare, and Dunkin Donuts Montgomery.

Last, but not least, we’d like to thank those who purchased a Brunch at Home basket either for themselves, a friend, or as a gift to someone in the community who otherwise would not be able to participate.

Sharon Naeole

Director of Development