SIDE BY SIDE: Mayor Liz Lempert and Santa Claus are beaming with the Christmas spirit during Saturday’s holiday celebration at the Princeton Shopping Center. Santa arrived in style on a Princeton Hook & Ladder Fire truck and the mayor led the countdown to the lighting of the courtyard Christmas tree as the Princeton High School Girls Choir performed songs of the season. (Photo by Emily Reeves)
Princeton Charter School has applied to the New Jersey Department of Education (DOE) to expand its enrollment by 76 students next year, a proposal that Princeton Public Schools (PPS) superintendent Steve Cochrane has claimed would drain funds from PPS and ”compromise the quality of our students’ education.” more
BREAKING THE ICE: Princeton University men’s hockey player Max Veronneau heads up the ice in recent action. Last Saturday, sophomore forward Veronneau tallied two goals and two assists to help Princeton rally to a 6-5 win over Rensselaer in overtime as it earned its first ECAC Hockey victory of the season. Princeton, now 3-6-1 overall and 1-6-1 ECACH, faces Quinnipiac this week in a home-and-home set, hosting the Bobcats on December 9 before playing them at Hamden, Conn. a day later. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)
Max Veronneau was feeling snakebitten in the first nine games of the season for the Princeton University men’s hockey team. more
At a meeting of Princeton’s Planning Board last week, developer Charles Yedlin received approval to put an office building on the site of the former headquarters of a longtime animal shelter. The Herrontown Road location was home to SAVE, a Friend to Homeless Animals, for 74 years before the organization moved to a 10-acre expanse in Skillman in August, 2015. more
The successful Dual Language Immersion Program at Community Park School will be an ongoing initiative in the district, after last month’s unanimous affirmation by the Princeton Public Schools Board of Education.
Started as a pilot initiative at the beginning of the 2015-16 year for sections in kindergarten and first grade, the program expanded to second grade, with 43 kindergarteners, 41 first graders, and 38 second graders. It is scheduled to include K-3 in 2017-18, K-4 in 2018-19, and K-5 with full implementation in 2019-20. more
American Repertory Ballet (ARB) brings the beloved classic “Nutracker” to the stage with Tchaikovsky’s magnificent score, new sets, thrilling choreography, and more than 100 performers. A holiday tradition for more than 50 years, ARB’s is one of the longest continuously running “Nutcracker” productions in the nation. Directed by Artistic Director Douglas Martin, ARB’s professional company will be joined by select students from Princeton Ballet School to tell the story of a young girl named Clara and how a mysterious gift from her Uncle brings about enchanted dreams and fantastical scenes. For tickets, visit www.statetheatrenj.org or call (732) 246-7469. (Photo Credit: Leighton Chen)
Simon Morrison was hoping to pursue a career as an orchestral musician when he fell in love with 20th-century Russian music. From that fascination grew an interest in Russian ballet. Soon, these subjects, and their histories, eclipsed his plans to play percussion or tuba in a symphony orchestra. more
EGYPTIAN EXPLORATIONS: Justin Mathews and Connie Escher team up to investigate the pharaohs of ancient Egypt and many other wonders of the ancient world with their sixth grade social studies students at John Witherspoon Middle School. (Photo by Donald Gilpin)
Tim Charleston, K-8 social studies supervisor for the Princeton Public Schools, described Connie Escher and Justin Mathews, sixth grade ancient world cultures teachers: “As a team they complement each other phenomenally. They both have significant individual strengths. They’re at the top of their game professionally. They take pride and pleasure in providing learning experiences for their students. They approach social studies in a hands-on way, and they care deeply about their students and about history.” more
Princeton Council voted on Monday, December 5 to approve an extension to March 31 of a developer’s agreement requested by architect J. Robert Hillier (a Town Topics shareholder).
Mr. Hillier had asked the governing body at its November 28 meeting to modify an amendment to the original agreement for the Waxwood, a former school for black children in the Witherspoon-Jackson neighborhood that he converted to 34 rental units over a decade ago. The agreement dictated that eight of the 34 rental units would be sold after a period of five years. Mr. Hillier would like to keep them as rentals. more
There’s a crack in everything — that’s how the light gets in. — Leonard Cohen (1934-2016)
A famous singer songwriter dies, someone you never found time to appreciate, so you go back and start listening and recognize the distant music you heard long ago walking through the fairgrounds of rock, a snatch of song coming from over there, not far, just a whisper away if you’d taken another turn somewhere between Van Morrison and David Bowie. more
Award-winning novelist Jhumpa Lahiri and book designer Amanda Weiss will discuss Ms. Lahiri’s The Clothing of Books (Penguin $7.95) at Labyrinth on Tuesday, December 13 at 6 p.m.
The conversation will consider the art of the book jacket from the perspectives of both reader and writer. The Clothing of Books probes the relationships between text and image, author and designer, and art and commerce. Ms. Lahiri discusses the role of the uniform; explains what book jackets and design have come to mean to her; and how, sometimes, “the covers become a part of me.” more
“SNOW ON THE CANAL AT LUMBERVILLE”: This wintery painting by Bucks County artist Glenn Harrington is a perfect addition to the Home for the Holidays Open House at the Silverman Gallery in Pa. The event will take place from 1 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, December 10 and Sunday, December 11. The gallery is located five miles south of New Hope and just north of Pa. 413 in the Buckingham Green Shopping Center, located at 4920 York Road (Route 202) in Holicong, Pa. Gallery hours are Wednesday through Sunday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Additional hours, shipping, delivery and in-home consultation are available by appointment at silvermangallery.com.
“WEDDING GUESTS”: Photographer Katie Orlinsky took this photo in Timbuktu, Mali on October 13, 2013, when an international coalition pushed out the jihadist militants who overtook the city. More of Orlinksky’s photographs of women’s lives in central Mali and their resistance to jihadist efforts will be on display at the Princeton University’s Bernstein Gallery in Robertson Hall from December 16, 2016 to January 26, 2017.
UP AND RUNNING: Stuart Country Day School basketball player Jalynn Spaulding dribbles up the court in a game last winter. Junior guard Spaulding helped Stuart get the 2016-17 season off to a good start, scoring 13 points as the Tartans defeated the George School (Pa.) 41-24 last Saturday in the finals of the George School Tournament. Stuart, which improved to 2-0 with the win, hosts the Solebury School (Pa.) on December 13.
After posting an impressive 19-9 record last winter, the Stuart Country Day School basketball team is raising the bar this season. more
Art Garfunkel, one of the most celebrated voices in American music, will perform at Princeton University’s Richardson Auditorium on Tuesday, December 13 at 4:30 p.m.
Garfunkel, along with his former partner Paul Simon, has received numerous awards and critical acclaim for his music, including 5 Grammy awards, the prestigious Britannia Award, Rolling Stone’s Best Album of the Year notation, and a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. more
See below for the December 1, 2016 Princeton Planning Board Meeting.
Town Topics Newspaper will be posting videos of all future municipal meetings.
Friday’s lighting of the Christmas tree on Palmer Square Green featured the Princeton High School Choir, Bob Denson’s Blues, and a visit from Santa. (Photo by Charles R. Plohn)
Speculation about the impact of a Trump presidency on international politics continues with seven weeks to go before the president-elect actually takes office. A panel of Princeton University historians, political scientists, anthropologists, and sociologists gathered in Aaron Burr Hall Monday under the auspices of Princeton’s Institute for International and Regional Studies (PIIRS) to discuss how the rest of the world views Mr. Trump and what might be the consequences of a Trump presidency in various parts of the world. more
Each December, thousands gather on the banks of the Delaware River to watch the reenactment of George Washington’s daring Christmas Day 1776 river crossing. During the event, several hundred reenactors in Continental military dress will listen to an inspiring speech by General Washington and then row across the river in replica Durham boats. The public has two opportunities to view the reenactment at Washington Crossing Historic Park. The first is on Sunday, December 11 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. (actual crossing at 1 p.m.) and the second is on Sunday, December 25 from noon to 3 p.m. (actual crossing at 1 p.m.).
A request to amend a developer’s agreement for The Waxwood building on Quarry Street, in the historic Witherspoon-Jackson district, was the topic of a work session at a meeting of Princeton Council Monday night.
Architect/developer J. Robert Hillier (a Town Topics shareholder) has asked Council to modify an amendment to the original agreement, which dictated that the rental units would be sold after a period of five years. Mr. Hillier told Council that should the units be converted, he feared tenants would not be able to afford to buy them. more
SHAKE AND BLAKE: Hun School boys’ hockey player Blake Brown cruises up the ice in a game last year. Senior co-captain and star forward Brown is being depended on to be the offensive catalyst this season for the Raiders. Hun is scheduled to open its 2016-17 season by playing at Holy Ghost (Pa.) on November 30. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)
Over the last few years, the Hun School boys’ hockey team thrived on a freewheeling approach, featuring some talented performers whose offensive flair could overcome mistakes. more