November 20, 2019

D&R Greenway Land Trust recently purchased the three-acre Koch property on Stony Brook Road in Hopewell adjacent to Cedar Ridge, one of its earliest and largest preserves at more than 200 acres. The new property has 650 feet of frontage on a key tributary stream of the Stony Brook. Here, volunteers from the Princeton area’s Ernest Schwiebert Chapter of Trout Unlimited stand behind debris recently removed from the property. Since its founding 30 years ago, D&R Greenway has permanently preserved 20,865 acres, including 31 miles of trails open to the public. (Photo courtesy of D&R Greenway)

By Anne Levin

Having considered recommendations from the town’s Public Works Committee, Princeton Council voted 5-1 Monday night, November 18, to leave the municipal fueling station on Mt. Lucas Road instead of moving it to another location.

The fueling station, which is next to the new headquarters of Princeton First Aid and Rescue Squad (PFARS), has been a source of controversy among residents of the adjacent neighborhood, who have complained about increased traffic, lighting, aesthetics, pedestrian and cyclist safety, and environmental health issues. Several spoke at the Council meeting, urging the governing body to go back to the drawing board before taking a vote.

“In the end, we have a fueling station that never should have been put there,” said resident Dennis Scheil. “We need to find a better spot.” Mt. Lucas Road resident Karen Jezierny said, “The remediation that has been suggested hasn’t yet hit the mark. Go back and do better before you vote.” more

CHALLENGING DACA TERMINATION: Princeton President Christopher L. Eisgruber, Maria Perales Sanchez, and Microsoft President Brad Smith attended arguments on termination of the DACA program at the U.S. Supreme Court last week. The Court is expected to render its decision in early 2020. (Photo by Princeton University, Office of Communications, Ben Chang)

By Donald Gilpin

As the Supreme Court continues to deliberate over the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and the fate of some 700,000 young adults who are affected by it, Princeton University and local agencies are working in support of the undocumented Dreamers.

The Supreme Court’s decision, expected early in 2020, may allow President Donald Trump to end the program, forcing DACA enrollments to expire and confronting DACA holders with deportation.

“The DACA deliberations in the Supreme Court will determine if they have jurisdiction over the matter,” said Latin American Legal Defense and Education Fund (LALDEF) Executive Director Adriana Abizadeh. ”If it is decided that they do not, hundreds of thousands of DACA recipients will ultimately have their status terminated because jurisdiction will be in the hands of the executive office.” more

By Anne Levin

For many people, Thanksgiving signifies the unofficial beginning of the overeating season. But there are opportunities, in Princeton and the surrounding area, to get some significant exercise before digging in to the sweet potatoes and pumpkin pie.

“Turkey Trots” are among the activities taking place during the holiday, which starts with early morning races on Thanksgiving Day, November 28 and ends with the traditional lighting of the Christmas tree in Palmer Square on Friday evening, November 29. In between, there are nature walks, a football game, a worship service, and more.

According to runnersworld.com, the first Turkey Trot race took place in Buffalo, N.Y., in 1896, with six competitors. Today, the races held all over the country draw hordes of runners and walkers, making it the most popular day of the year to run a race. Nearly all raise funds for charity. more

FUSED GLASS BOTANICALS: Karen Caldwell’s unique glass pieces are among the offerings at this year’s Covered Bridge Artisans Studio Tour, celebrating its 25th anniversary. Studios are open throughout the Thanksgiving weekend.

By Anne Levin

When five artists in rural Bucks and Hunterdon counties decided to invite the public into their studios over Thanksgiving weekend more than two decades ago, they never imagined that it would turn into an annual tradition. But the Covered Bridge Artisans Studio Tour quickly caught on, becoming, for many, a much-anticipated, unofficial start to the holiday season.

“We have so many repeat customers,” said Karen Caldwell, one of the original five artists. “They come back year after year, and they have their favorites.”

Caldwell’s Sunflower Glass Studio is among the eight professional studios on this year’s Covered Bridge Artisans Studio Tour, being held Friday-Sunday, November 29-December 1 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. in Lambertville, Stockton, Sergeantsville, and New Hope- area spaces.  Thirteen additional artists will show their work at the Events Center in Sergeantsville, located behind the town’s firehouse. more

MINDFULNESS: Erin Galbraith teaches mindfulness to all levels, preschool through middle school, at Princeton Montessori School, helping overwhelmed children and teachers “to be able to stop and pause, use their breath to find equilibrium, and allow their nervous system to balance.”(Photo courtesy of Princeton Montessori School)

By Donald Gilpin

Erin Galbraith had been teaching yoga in the area when she started an after-school program at the Princeton Montessori School, where her son and daughter were enrolled. Her classes were popular, so she offered an additional class for parents, and then started teaching teachers some yoga once a week after school, emphasizing with them the value of taking care of yourself. 

One day five years ago Head of School Michelle Morrison came to her with a vision for a program that would involve all the students in the school. “I didn’t have to sell anyone on anything,” Galbraith said. “She came to me with ‘This is our need. I want you to do this.’ and I said ‘great.’”

Galbraith continued, “She was seeing children who were very busy outside of school, with a lot on their plates in this sped-up culture. I think she was feeling that they needed a way to resource that inner calm that lies inside us, to help children become aware of their inner world. I think she knew this would be a real resource for children in this chaotic world.” more

“SQUEEZES” ON THE BATTLEFIELD: With paper, water, and a brush, Nora Okka, a visiting scholar at the Institute for Advanced Study (IAS), has made “squeezes,” copies of the sculpted surface of the pillars, of the Princeton Battlefield colonnade. Those squeezes will be exhibited at IAS. (Photo by Dan Komoda, Institute for Advanced Study)

By Donald Gilpin

“Spolia,” the focus of Nora Okka’s research over the past decade, are recycled stones, reliefs, fragments, etc. removed from their original context to be used in a different context. And when Okka, a director’s visitor at the Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) for the 2019-20 academic year working on a Venetian architecture project, arrived in Princeton, she didn’t expect to discover spolia in the area adjacent to the Institute.

“That was a great surprise for me,” said Okka, who blends the roles of architect, artist, and curator in her multidisciplinary work. “I was invited here by the director in order to complete my research on the spolia in the city of Venice, and it was a surprise for me to realize that the portico has a very intriguing spolia story behind it.” 

Okka explained that she made a “squeeze” of the columns — a process with paper, a brush, and water to create a reverse copy of the surface — exactly five days before the 60th anniversary of the Battlefield colonnade, which was dedicated at a ceremony on November 11, 1959. The squeeze process took about four hours, then it dried overnight. Squeezes can be easily carried and stored.  more

Hun School Receives Donation of Family Home

Princeton philanthropist Betty Wold Johnson has donated her Edgerstoune Road home to the Hun School of Princeton with the intention of the property becoming a headmaster’s house and a place for the headmaster to entertain members of the school community.

Designed by Princeton architect Ralph Bauhan, the property includes an 18-room Georgian-style house with furnishings and antiques, and manicured gardens. It is known for its large, illuminated Christmas tree.

“Mrs. Johnson’s generosity to The Hun School has been extraordinary,” said Hun School Headmaster Jonathan Brougham. “The house is far more grand than my family would ever expect or need, but it will mean great things for the School.” The gift, along with the Brougham family’s move into the newly named Johnson House in the new year, will open up Mason House, the existing headmaster’s house, for other school needs. more

By Stuart Mitchner

God has sent his creatures into the world with arms long enough to reach anywhere if they could be put to the trouble of extending them.
—Thomas Chatterton 1752-1770

It seems that the long arms of Wordsworth’s “marvelous boy” have reached into the second decade of the 21st century. While I’ve been unable to learn whether the saying attributed to Chatterton was of his own making or simply, as one source says, “one of his favorite maxims,” the very idea that the authorship is in question accords with his legend. If he seems an unlikely time traveler, he has a claim on this particular day, having been born in the city of Bristol on November  20, 1752. It’s also hard to imagine a figure from the past more relevant to the hoax-and-witch-hunt chaos of this fake-news-conspiracy-theory-tainted age than the 15-year-old who invented a 15th-century poetry-writing priest named Thomas Rowley, fabricating Rowley’s Middle English manuscripts artfully enough to convince certain literary authorities that his forgeries were authentic.

Better Than Marvelous

Any thought of devoting an entire column to Chatterton came to an abrupt end last Friday. The marvelous boy was no match for the marvelous woman who, in the words of the New York Times, had been “Plunged Into the War Zone of U.S. Politics.”

Not that I would have called Marie Yovanovitch “marvelous,” a word I seldom use. She was better than that, better than the infectious superlative William Wordsworth and Cole Porter put into the transcendental conversation. Was she beautiful? strong? quietly compelling? She was better. She was sympathetic. The beauty was in her bearing, her poise, her integrity, the way she made her case, told her story, weathered the patronizing tone of interrogators doing their polite best to avoid taking her seriously.  more

“SORTA RICAN”: Passage Theatre has continued its Solo Flights series with “Sorta Rican.” Written and performed by Miss Angelina (above) and directed by Laura Grey, the musical monologue depicts the performer’s search for her cultural identity. (Photo by Rachel Kenaston)

By Donald H. Sanborn III

Passage Theatre has continued its Solo Flights series with Sorta Rican, which was presented November 15-17. Written and performed by actor and recording artist Miss Angelina, this autobiographical monologue is a musical odyssey that humorously follows the singer’s quest to connect with her identity as a Latina.

Miss Angelina is a rapper who has released two albums, and has costarred in a music web series that has been featured on the television series American Latino. She has been touring with Sorta Rican since 2015, presenting it at venues such as the Hard Rock Café (San Juan), Broadway Comedy Club (NYC), and Improv Olympic Theater (LA).

The show itself is a tour. The journey starts with the monologist’s upbringing as part of an immigrant family in Little Silver, New Jersey. From there we follow her to New York City (where she lives in Washington Heights), Miami, and San Juan. These all are places that Miss Angelina visits in the course of a search for her cultural heritage. Along the way she encounters disparate preconceptions about what it means to be a Puerto Rican and/or a Latina. more

Roxey Ballet presents Mark Roxey’s production of “Nutcracker” at The College of New Jersey’s Kendall Theater in Ewing November 28-December 8. Santa will visit, and Princeton Pro Musica will perform at intermission. The November 30, 1 p.m. performance is sensory-friendly for those with special needs. Visit www.roxeyballet.org for more details and ticket information.

McCarter Theatre’s production of “A Christmas Carol” returns December 10-29. Cowering at the top of the steps is Greg Wood, who returns to play Ebeneezer Scrooge, shown here with Adele Batchelder in the 2018 production. Visit mccarter.org for tickets. (Photo by Mark Garvin)

“VIOLET SERIES III”: This painting by Wanyu Guo is featured in “Delayed Choice: Chinese New-Generation Female Artists,” on view through November 22 at the Numina Gallery at Princeton High School. The exhibit showcases works by 18 women artists trained at the Central Academy of Fine Arts and the Academy of Arts and Design of Tsinghua University in Beijing, China.

On view through November 22 at the Numina Gallery at Princeton High School (PHS), 151 Moore Street, “Delayed Choice: Chinese New-Generation Female Artists” is an exhibition of original fine art by 18 women artists trained at the Central Academy of Fine Arts and the Academy of Arts and Design of Tsinghua University in Beijing, China. It is the first group exhibition of young female Chinese artists in the United States.

The exhibition, which celebrates the 40th anniversary of formal U.S.-China diplomatic relations, showcases work by Jia Chu, Rui Feng, Tianshu Gong, Wanyu Guo, Nan Hu, Yanhe Liu, Ying Liu, Yiran Wang, Yu Wang, Yujing Wang, Huanpan Xie, Huichao Yang, Huimin Yang, Wen Zhang, Zijia Zhang, Qinyu Zheng, and Qianyin Zhuo.

The artists play with the concept of time and tradition. The exhibition demonstrates traditional Chinese art forms while integrating more contemporary Western styles. Each artist intertwines ideas of society, gender, and culture in their work, providing a relevant new perspective for a modern international and intercultural world. more

“PORTRAITS OF PRESERVATION”: Watercolor paintings by award-winning artist James Fiorentino will be featured at D&R Greenway Land Trust December 6 through February 28. The show highlights the landscapes and wildlife found on the acres and properties permanently preserved by D&R Greenway since its founding 30 years ago.

D&R Greenway Land Trust continues the celebration of its 30th year with a new, traveling exhibit, “Portraits of Preservation,” based on watercolor paintings by award-winning artist James Fiorentino. The exhibit highlights the landscapes and wildlife found on 20,865 acres and 308 properties permanently preserved by the D&R Greenway since its founding three decades ago.

The exhibit will launch on December 6 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. with an opening reception featuring an artist talk and special guests. The exhibit will remain on display at the Johnson Education Center weekdays through February 28, after which it will travel to other locations throughout Central New Jersey and surrounding states. more

“CACHE-CACHE, MON AMOUR”: This mixed media encaustic collage by Marla N. Powers is part of the West Windsor Arts Council’s “Off the Wall: An Affordable Art Sale,” a juried exhibition and art sale on view through December 20 at the West Windsor Arts Center in Princeton Junction.

The West Windsor Arts Council presents the work of over 100 artists in “Off the Wall: An Affordable Art Sale.” The juried exhibition is open to the public through Friday, December 20. As an affordable art sale, artwork is offered at prices from $50 to $400. Artworks may be literally taken off the wall at the time of purchase.

“This is the ninth ‘Off the Wall’ art show and it grows in quality and excitement each year,” said Aylin Green, executive director of the West Windsor Arts Center. “This was our biggest year yet in terms of the number of works submitted for consideration. The exhibition committee did a great job selecting the work. I know it was a difficult thing to do, but, ultimately, the variety of works, all priced under $400, is impressive. I’ve got my eye on two or three.”

Marla Powers’ artwork is representative of the unique art in various mediums and styles that one can see in this show. Powers’ art is influenced by her background in anthropology and her studies of the art of the Lakota people in South Dakota and the Pueblo people in New Mexico. Powers focuses on creating artwork that allows the viewer to sense the movement and energy of the subject matter. This fluidity is evident in Powers’ work cache-cache, mon amour which she created using encaustic collage and mixed media. more

RETURN ENGAGEMENT: Princeton University field hockey player MaryKate Neff tracks down the ball in a game earlier this fall. Last Sunday, junior star Neff scored a goal to help No. 9 Princeton defeat No. 2 UConn  2-0 in the NCAA quarterfinals. The Tigers, now 15-4 and riding a 12-game winning streak, will play No. 3 Virginia (18-4) in the NCAA semis on November 22 at Winston-Salem, N.C., with the victor advancing to the national championship game on November 24. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

In late September, the Princeton University field hockey team suffered a tough loss when it fell 2-1 in overtime to UConn.

But after winning 11 of its next 12 games, including a 5-1 thrashing of Syracuse in the first round of the NCAA tournament last Friday, ninth-ranked Princeton earned a rematch with the powerhouse Huskies last Sunday on their home field in Storrs, Conn. in the national quarterfinals.

Displaying how far it has come since that disappointing September afternoon, Princeton turned the tables on No. 2 UConn, pulling away to a 2-0 win as the program earned its second straight trip to the NCAA Final Four and third in the last four years.

Princeton head coach Carla Tagliente was thrilled by her team’s performance in Connecticut as it ended the weekend at 15-4 and riding a 12-game winning streak. The Tigers will now play No. 3 Virginia (18-4) in the NCAA semis on November 22 at Winston-Salem, N.C., with the victor advancing to the national championship game on November 24. more

DOGFIGHT: Princeton University receiver Andrew Griffin goes up for the ball against Yale last Saturday. Senior star Griffin made six catches for 68 yards in the game but it wasn’t nearly enough as Princeton fell 51-14 to Yale. The Tigers, now 7-2 overall and 4-2 Ivy League, play at Penn on November 23 to wrap up the 2019 season. Despite the loss to the Bulldogs, the Tigers could gain a share of the Ivy title if they defeat the Quakers and both Yale (8-1 overall, 5-1 Ivy) and Dartmouth (8-1 overall, 5-1 Ivy) fall in their finales. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Andrew Griffin paid his dues in waiting to get a starting role at wide receiver for the Princeton University football team.

After not seeing any varsity action as a freshman and getting into a couple of games in his sophomore year, Griffin made three catches last fall as a junior in eight games.

Emerging as a star receiver this year, Griffin came into last Saturday with 25 catches and a team-high six touchdown receptions as Princeton hosted Yale in its home finale and honored Griffin and his fellow seniors in a pregame ceremony. more

BOOSTING MORALE: Princeton University men’s basketball player Jose Morales dribbles up the court in a game last winter. Last Wednesday, senior guard Morales, a former Hun School standout, scored eight points in 19 minutes off the bench, but it wasn’t enough as the Tigers fell 72-65 to Lafayette. Princeton, now 0-3, plays at Indiana on November 20 before hosting Arizona State on November 26. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

With the Princeton University men’s basketball team trailing Lafayette 52-34 early in the second half last Wednesday in its home opener at Jadwin Gym, Jose Morales came off the bench looking to give the Tigers a lift.

“It was just, be a spark offensively and defensively, whatever we really needed,” said Morales, a native or Miramar, Fla. who starred in a postgraduate season at the Hun School. “I felt like we just came out a little flat.”

With the scrappy 5’9 Morales throwing his body around at both ends of the court, Princeton went on an 18-7 run to narrow the gap to 59-52. But in the end, Lafayette held on for a 72-65 win as the Tigers dropped to 0-3. more

TOE TO TOE: Princeton University men’s hockey player Derek Topatigh, right, battles for the puck in recent action. Last Friday evening, senior defenseman and captain Topatigh scored a goal to help Princeton rally from a two-goal deficit to pull out a 2-2 tie with RPI. The Tigers, who lost 2-1 to Union in overtime a night later to fall to 1-3-2 overall and 0-3-1 ECAC Hockey, play at Colgate on November 22 and at No. 2 Cornell on November 23. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Even though the Princeton University men’s hockey team trailed RPI 2-0 after two periods last Friday night at Hobey Baker Rink, Derek Topatigh was confident that the Tigers could rally.

“It was just stick to the game plan, it has been working,” said senior defenseman and captain Topatigh, recalling the discussion in the locker room during the second intermission.

“We were all over them; they got a couple of bounces and capitalized on their chances. The message was just keep doing what we were doing. We know we are a good team and we have the systems in place to win.” more

MILES TO GO: Princeton High boys’ soccer player Miles Ryan controls the ball in a game this fall. Sophomore midfielder Ryan was one of several young players who stepped up this season for PHS as it went 14-7 and advanced to the Mercer County Tournament semifinals and the Central Jersey Group 4 sectional quarters. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Justin Feil

Wayne Sutcliffe has never guided such a young Princeton High boys’ soccer team in his 23 years as head coach of the program as he had this fall.

There was not a senior on the field when fifth-seeded PHS lost 1-0 to 13th-seeded and eventual sectional finalist, Long Branch, on November 1 in the Central Jersey Group 4 quarterfinal.

While the harsh finality of the result stung, the Tigers could look ahead with justified optimism to the 2020 season.

“There’s clear desire on their part to win some silverware next year,” said Sutcliffe.  more

SPOILS OF VICTORY: Members of the Princeton Football Club (PFC) Porto U-12 boys team show off the trophy and medals they earned for winning the New Jersey Youth Soccer State President’s Cup earlier this month. The PFC team edged Cinnaminson SC Union 2-1 in overtime in the championship game on November 3 at the Capelli Sports Complex in Tinton Falls. By winning the New Jersey title, PFC qualified to compete in the East Regional, which will be held next June in Barboursville and Charleston, W. Va. Pictured in the front row, from left, are Nishanth Balaji, Mario Radzicki, Quinn Shannon, Gus Shapiro, Siddarth Goyal, and Logan Miller. In the back row, from left, are Coach Yordan Hristov, Aaron Thyrum, Vidur Jain, Trey McFadden,  Billy Crawshaw, Declan Hughes, Christian Tharney, Ivan Marinov, and Aahil Sikkander.

By Bill Alden

Yordan Hristov sensed that his PFC Porto U-12 boys’ soccer team was poised for a championship run this fall.

Hardened by losing in the state quarterfinals last spring as the bounces didn’t go the club’s way, Hristov saw a greater resolve in his players.

“I felt going into this season that we have something special going on,” said PFC Porto head coach Hristov.

“We are more prepared a little more mature and smarter. We have a little bit more determination and we all have a better understanding and the experience of the past.” more

November 13, 2019

Princeton faced Dartmouth on Saturday afternoon at Yankee Stadium as part of the 150th anniversary of the first college football game, played between Princeton and Rutgers on November 6, 1869. Attendees share their favorite Princeton football memories in this week’s Town Talk on page 6. For more on the game, see page 31. (Photo by Charles R. Plohn)

By Donald Gilpin

Four highly qualified candidates competed in last week’s election for three seats on the Princeton Public Schools (PPS) Board of Education (BOE), as the PPS faces the challenges of education in the 21st century, along with overcrowding, rising enrollments, and budget shortfalls that last year necessitated laying off teachers.

Princeton residents were asked to vote for three of the four, and they divided their 11,627 votes closely among the candidates, with all four finishing within four percentage points: Susan Kanter at 27.15 percent (3,157 votes), Dafna Kendal at 25.35 percent (2,948 votes), Debbie Bronfeld at 24.04 percent (2,795 votes), and Greg Stankiewicz at 23.07 percent (2,682 votes).

These results are still unofficial, with provisional ballots remaining to be counted, but the Mercer County Clerk’s Office is expected to certify the final votes today.

As in last year’s election, when two newcomers won seats and Kendal lost her post after her first term on the BOE, the outsiders fared better than the incumbents, with new candidate Kanter and former BOE member Kendal out-polling incumbents Bronfeld, who held onto her post with the third-most votes, and incumbent BOE Vice President Stankiewicz, who finished fourth and will be stepping down when his term ends at the end of the year. more

By Anne Levin

A few decades ago, Princeton might have been considered a culinary wasteland. That description could hardly apply today.

Food has become a key attraction in the downtown and surrounding area, so much so that Princeton Restaurant Week was launched last March. An expanded version, Central Jersey Restaurant Week, is currently underway through Sunday, offering special fixed price menus at several local eateries and others in locations including New Brunswick, Hamilton, Pennington, and Lawrenceville. Lunches are $20; dinners $35.

“The restaurants that took part in the first Princeton Restaurant Week were really happy with it, and some said they had their best week ever,” said Michelle Pirone Lambros, whose Princeton Promotions company is behind the effort. “Peter Crowley [president and CEO of the Princeton Mercer Regional Chamber of Commerce] asked me to do something broader than just Princeton, which is how the Central Jersey week came to be.”

The Chamber and the MacLean Agency are partnering with Princeton Promotions on Central Jersey Restaurant Week. Lambros, who was recently elected to Princeton Council, said plans are for the local event to continue each March, while the Central Jersey week will be an annual event each November. “We didn’t want them to conflict with each other,” she said. “Right now is a little bit of a lull before the holidays, which we thought would work well for the Central Jersey week.” more