October 15, 2014
GEORGIAN BRICK FOR TODAY: The style of the new Marion Buckelew Cullen Center at The Westminster Choir College of Rider University might echo the past but its construction is very much up to contemporary standards. The first new construction at the college in 39 years, the $8.5 million project, designed by KSS Architects, has received LEED Silver Certification. An open house offers a tour of new rehearsal and performance spaces as well as an afternoon of musical performances by faculty and students on Sunday, October 26, from 1 to 5 p.m.

GEORGIAN BRICK FOR TODAY: The style of the new Marion Buckelew Cullen Center at The Westminster Choir College of Rider University might echo the past but its construction is very much up to contemporary standards. The first new construction at the college in 39 years, the $8.5 million project, designed by KSS Architects, has received LEED Silver Certification. An open house offers a tour of new rehearsal and performance spaces as well as an afternoon of musical performances by faculty and students on Sunday, October 26, from 1 to 5 p.m.

The Westminster Choir College of Rider University, on Walnut Lane next door to Princeton High School, will treat members of the Princeton community to a look inside its new building on Sunday, October 26, from 1 to 5 p.m.

The Open House will showcase the The Marion Buckelew Cullen Center, with a tour of the building and afternoon of musical performances by faculty and students.

The new Center’s design, by the Princeton firm KSS Architects, was inspired by the Georgian style of the four original buildings surrounding the Morgan Quadrangle at the center of the college campus. The $8.5 million project was funded by pledges, gifts, and grants from various sources.

Named in honor of Marion Buckelew Cullen, a long time supporter of the Choir College, the building was erected in less than a year since ground broke in September of 2013.“It was finished in August and ready for students at the start of this school year,” said Anne Sears, Rider University’s director of external affairs, who led this reporter on a tour of the new facility Monday. “Some wonderful time lapse photography on our website [www.rider.edu/wcc/about-us/construction] shows the building taking shape through all of the snow storms we had last winter.”

The outcome has been LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified at the Silver level for construction focused on pollution prevention as well as its use of green power, low emitting materials, wood certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), recycled materials, low water use, and storm water management.

The first new construction on the campus in 39 years, the Center boasts a 3,000-square-foot performance and rehearsal hall, the Hillman Performance Hall, named in recognition of a $3 million grant in support of the project from the Henry L. Hillman Foundation.

The hall has acoustical panels that can be moved according to the varying sound requirements of symphony orchestra, choir, small ensembles. A peek inside reveals Director of Choir Activities Joe Miller at work with the Westminster Choir, rehearsing in the new space.

There’s also a green room and three flexibly configured classrooms that will accommodate a wide range of academic and choral uses. The Center and its restrooms are handicap-accessible.

The airy classrooms are all sound isolated, as is the entire building. “A lot of money, care, and attention went into the acoustics,” said Ms. Sears, pointing out the state-of-the-art audio/visual technology. “The quality of the acoustics is such that we can produce professional recordings here, as was demonstrated recently when we webcast to alumnae around the world. This new building and the technology we have will allow us to bring Westminster to the world in new ways that will raise the profile of the school.”

The large entry way and lobby is painted in a soft Williamsburg Blue and looks out onto a green lawn that forms a quadrangle between the new building and the existing campus. The courtyard in front of the Center and the as yet unnamed “quad” is expected to be a primary outdoor venue for Westminster student and alumni events.

Located next to and connecting to one of the College’s existing rehearsal and performance spaces, The Playhouse, the new Center creates much needed access for audiences who used to have to stand outside waiting to get inside. No more, said Ms. Sears. “Now we have a real box office, no more standing in the rain to get into The Playhouse,” she said, noting that an upgrade to The Playhouse will be the “next step.” The building where Leonard Bernstein once rehearsed could use some changing rooms, for example. “The Playhouse has phenomenal acoustics as Bernstein noted; he loved it.”

Having had a long association with the Choir College, Ms. Cullen could recall campus rehearsals “when some of the world’s greatest conductors, such as Leonard Bernstein and Riccardo Muti, came to prepare students for major orchestral performances.”

Ms. Cullen, who died in 2012, was one of the Westminster Choir College’s strongest supporters. She had no children and left her entire $5 million estate to the Westminster Choir College.

“I knew Marion very well,” said Ms. Sears, who has been with the Choir College since 1984. “She was not someone who would draw attention to herself and she would be surprised to see her name on the building, but I am sure she would be absolutely thrilled to see a building that was being used so thoughtfully and so well.”

Descended from three of New Jersey’s oldest families, the Buckelews, the Housels, and the Stouts. Ms. Cullen was a graduate of the New Jersey College for Women, now Douglass College of Rutgers University, where she majored in English, history and the dramatic arts. From 1983 to 1989, she was a member of the Westminster Choir College Board of Trustees.

In 2003, when she received an honorary Doctor of Humanities degree from the College, she said: “I’ve traveled extensively throughout my life. No matter where I’ve been in the world, whether it was attending services at a Presbyterian Church in Egypt or the chapel of West Point, I’ve encountered a Westminster graduate. They are undoubtedly the best.”

Ms. Cullen described the honorary degree as a “highlight of my life.”

Celebratory Events

As befits a music college, the Open House will include performances by ensembles, students, and faculty from Westminster Choir College and Westminster Conservatory, Westminster’s community music school.

Arrive at 1 p.m. to hear the Conservatory’s Suzuki Violin Ensemble performing favorite works by Vivaldi, Schumann, Bach, and Suzuki. At 1:30 p.m., students in the High School Honors Music Program: pianists Benjamin Qi, Richard Qi, and Charlie Liu, and violinist Dallas Noble will present violin and piano duets, with excerpts of Corigliano’s Gazebo Dances and Grieg’s Violin Sonata No. 3 in C Minor, Op. 45.

Westminster Choir College student pianist Asher Severini will perform movements of Barber’s Piano Sonata in E-Flat Major, Op. 26, at 2 p.m. and at 2:30 p.m., the Westminster Community Orchestra, will present highlights from Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf, conducted by Ruth Ochs with narrator Lois Laverty.

Children will have an opportunity to “Meet the Instruments” at 3 p.m. followed by other performances by the Westminster Opera Theatre, the Westminster Chinese Instrument Orchestra, the Cantus Children’s Choir, conducted by Patricia Thel, and Westminster Harmonie, a chamber music ensemble composed of Westminster Conservatory faculty and advanced students.

Admission is free. For more information, visit: www.rider.edu/cullen.

 

Dogs and cats in need of loving homes will come to Palmer Square on Sunday, October 19 from noon to 3 p.m., when SAVE, A Friend to Homeless Animals and Palmer Square hosts “SAVE on the Square.”

In keeping with National Adopt a Shelter Dog Month, this family-friendly event is designed to raise awareness about the “adoption option” for homeless dogs and cats and to showcase several of SAVE’s furry friends.

“We approached SAVE about hosting this event with us because we admire their work, as do many supporters in the community,” says Anita Fresolone, marketing director for Palmer Square Management. “We felt that coming up with a way to showcase them on the Green would be great exposure for their mission.”

The afternoon will include a visit from the Trenton Thunder mascot from noon to 1 p.m., a demonstration by the Princeton Dog Training Club from 1-2 p.m., local, pet-friendly vendors, and a veterinarian to answer pet-related questions.

Games and raffle prizes will be donated by Palmer Square stores and restaurants. There will be a 50/50 raffle (drawing to take place on November 15), and children can enter an art contest by submitting a drawing of “their perfect day with a pet.”

Since 1941, SAVE has been dedicated to strengthening the human-animal bond. The SAVE family works to make a difference in the lives of many deserving pets by cleaning cages, walking dogs, socializing the animals in residence, and assisting with special events. SAVE depends on the community at large to support the shelter’s dogs and cats in residence. For more information about SAVE or SAVE on the Square, call (609) 921-6122.

TIME FOR TEA: This image of perhaps the most famous tea kettle ever, is one that evokes the name of Princeton’s own Michael Graves, the internationally renowned architect and designer who has won numerous awards and distinctions including the National Medal of Arts. Mr. Graves’s work has been widely exhibited and published, and his drawings, paintings, and objects have found permanent homes in museums and private collections around the world. A retrospective of his work, “Michael Graves: Past as Prologue,” marks the 50th anniversary of his design firm, and opens at Grounds for Sculpture Saturday, October 18. For more information, visit: www.groundsforsculpture.org. For more on Mr. Graves, visit www.michaelgraves.com.

TIME FOR TEA: This image of perhaps the most famous tea kettle ever, is one that evokes the name of Princeton’s own Michael Graves, the internationally renowned architect and designer who has won numerous awards and distinctions including the National Medal of Arts. Mr. Graves’s work has been widely exhibited and published, and his drawings, paintings, and objects have found permanent homes in museums and private collections around the world. A retrospective of his work, “Michael Graves: Past as Prologue,” marks the 50th anniversary of his design firm, and opens at Grounds for Sculpture Saturday, October 18. For more information, visit: www.groundsforsculpture.org. For more on Mr. Graves, visit www.michaelgraves.com.

Grounds For Sculpture’s Fall/Winter exhibition season features an installation of work by internationally acclaimed artist and architect Michael Graves. The exhibition, “Michael Graves: Past as Prologue,” will celebrate the 50th anniversary of Graves’ design firm and its five decades of visionary work. It will run from October 18 through April 5, 2015.

The exhibition will feature a tour through seminal architecture and product design projects, and will display some of Graves’ original works of art, including sculpture and paintings. It will reflect the evolution of Mr. Graves’ core design principles and how the past influences the present, setting the stage for the future.

On view in the Museum, Domestic Arts Building, and Welcome Center, “Past as Prologue” will present projects ranging from rarely seen work from 1964 through current work “on the boards.” Some of Graves’ most influential architectural designs will be on display including the iconic Denver Central Library and the Team Disney Building in Burbank. Also featured will be everyday objects such as his celebrated ALESSI teakettle and a collection of bowls and vases for Steuben Glass.

The exhibition will reflect the breadth of the Princeton architect’s accomplishments at every scale. Visitors will have a rare glimpse at the early Linear City project on which Graves collaborated with architect Peter Eisenman. They will also have an opportunity to see the progression of Graves’s design philosophy and the core values he developed with his collaborators and gain insight into how such a broad spectrum of work produced across five decades is inter-connected.

“Reminiscing over 50 years of projects is wonderful for me, but I am most excited about how the future of our practice is evolving from the energetic collaboration of our disciplines,” commented Michael Graves. “I hope that visitors experience the many scales of our designs with the same joy that we feel in creating them.”

In addition to an extensive collection of Graves’ architectural models, products, furniture, paintings, sculptural pieces, and photos of built projects from around the world, some of his never-before-seen drawings will also be on view, providing a behind-the scenes glimpse into the design process from original concept to the final product or project.

“Michael is a true visionary,” said GFS Chief Curator Tom Moran. “This exhibition will feature many of his never-before-seen drawings created over five decades, which will enable visitors to experience his thought process in the same space as the finished product. He approaches every project with a human sensibility; whether it’s a hotel, office building, or product for home and health, he insists that it be intuitive and functional. And he is able to balance this requirement with streamlined design and a heightened aesthetic. He is a master at his craft, and we are so pleased to be able to share his work and celebrate the 50 years leading up to this momentous exhibition.”

Throughout the duration of “Michael Graves: Past as Prologue,” GFS will offer special events, talks, tours, and hands-on art-making workshops for families and adults, in addition to a film series and a Product Design Challenge, all inspired by the exhibition. This exhibition has been made possible in part through the generous support of its presenting sponsor, Kimberly-Clark, and by ALESSI, one of the leading “factories of Italian design.”

For more information, visit: www.groundsforsculpture.org.

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Princeton Police have charged 22-year-old Taquan E. Knight, with the Hamilton Jewelers robbery that occurred on October, 5, 2014, when a Rolex Sky-Dweller watch valued at over $46,000 was stolen by a black male who fled the store.

Networking between police agencies in Princeton and Pittsburgh, Pa, led to Knight’s identification.

He was allegedly arrested for a similar robbery in Pittsburgh, Pa, last Tuesday, October 7, when he attempted to flee a jewelry store with a Rolex watch. He was stopped and detained by a store security officer until police arrived. Knight is being held at the Allegheny County Jail in Pittsburgh on charges stemming from the theft.

Princeton Police charged Knight with one count of second-degree robbery and one count of third-degree theft.  Bail was set at $50,000.00.

 

BOOK NIRVANA: The Library’s Community Room will once again be the place to go for book lovers when the Friends of the Princeton Public Library’s annual event opens with a $10 Preview Sale Friday, October 17, from 10 a.m. to noon. Starting at noon, admission to the event is free for the remainder of the sale. Hours are noon-8:30 p.m. Friday, 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 5:30 p.m. Sunday.

BOOK NIRVANA: The Library’s Community Room will once again be the place to go for book lovers when the Friends of the Princeton Public Library’s annual event opens with a $10 Preview Sale Friday, October 17, from 10 a.m. to noon. Starting at noon, admission to the event is free for the remainder of the sale. Hours are noon-8:30 p.m. Friday, 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 5:30 p.m. Sunday.

The 2014 Friends of the Princeton Public Library Book Sale, which will take place October 17-19 in the library’s Community Room and in a tent on Hinds Plaza, features a substantial donation from the collection of John Wilmerding, former senior curator at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., and professor emeritus of American Art at Princeton University. Included in this collection are books inscribed to Mr. Wilmerding by photographer Walker Evans as well as other renowned artists and art scholars.

The event features nearly 10,000 books for all ages on a wide variety of topics. Most books are priced between $1 and $3, with art books and special selections priced higher. The sale opens with a preview on Friday, October 17, from 10 a.m. to noon. A ticket for the preview sale is $10, but is free for Friends of the Library. Numbered tickets will be available at the door starting at 8 a.m. Customers enter the sale in numerical order. This year, barcode scanners will be permitted at the tables, but collecting books to scan will not be allowed.

Starting at noon, admission to the book sale is free for the remainder of the sale. Hours are noon-8:30 p.m. Friday, 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Saturday and 1 to 5:30 p.m. Sunday.

On Sunday, books will be sold at half price in the Community Room and in the tent on Hinds Plaza. From 3 to 5:30 p.m. on Sunday, a Bag Sale will be held in the tent where a standard grocery bag can be filled with books for $5. Bags will be supplied at the sale.

In addition to the Wilmerding donation, the sale includes a large number of art, history, and political science books, and good selections in classics and literature, fiction, children’s and numerous other categories. Buyers will also find many old and unusual books, books in a variety of foreign languages for both adults and children, sheet music, CDs, DVDs (including many popular series), and audiobooks.

Other special items at this year’s sale include: a trove of gardening books donated by a local garden designer; a small collection of inscribed books by Ashley Montagu related to his work, The Elephant Man: A Study in Human Dignity, which inspired the movie and the Tony Award-winning play; books signed or inscribed by Eugene O’Neill, John Dos Passos, Edith Sitwell, Ted Hughes, Leonard Baskin, and Abbie Hoffman; a rare early volume by Patti Smith; the 3rd edition of Thomas Chatterton’s Rowley poems from 1778 in the original boards; fine volumes by collectible illustrators include Kay Nielsen’s The Twelve Dancing Princesses. J.D. Salinger’s Franny and Zooey is one of a number of modern first editions being offered.

For more information, contact Abby McCall, Friends Administrator, (609) 924-9529 ext. 280, or friends@princetonlibrary.org.

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CONTEMPORARY INDIAN ART: The Anne Reid ’72 Art Gallery at Princeton Day School’s current exhibition“Confluence: Contemporary Indian Art,” on view through November 14, includes this 12 by 18 inch work by T. Vaikuntam, titled :Radha Krishna,” alongside other examples of modern art. A gallery reception and informal discussion of Indian culture with Sumit Ganguli will take place Saturday, October 25, from 5 to 7 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. For more information, call 609) 924-6700 x 1772 or visit: www.pds.org.

CONTEMPORARY INDIAN ART: The Anne Reid ’72 Art Gallery at Princeton Day School’s current exhibition“Confluence: Contemporary Indian Art,” on view through November 14, includes this 12 by 18 inch work by T. Vaikuntam, titled :Radha Krishna,” alongside other examples of modern art. A gallery reception and informal discussion of Indian culture with Sumit Ganguli will take place Saturday, October 25, from 5 to 7 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. For more information, call 609) 924-6700 x 1772 or visit: www.pds.org.

The Anne Reid ’72 Art Gallery at Princeton Day School is the venue for “Confluence: Contemporary Indian Art,” curated by Meena Dadha and on view through November 14.

A reception and informal discussion of Indian culture with Sumit Ganguli will take place on Saturday, October 25, from 5 to 7 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

“Confluence: Contemporary Indian Art” presents a selection of contemporary art that represents the best of modern art in India today. It comprises a collection brought to the United States by Ms. Dadha of Prakrit Arts, Chennai, India.

The artists whose works are featured represent many different styles while maintaining their Indian identity. Some work in realism, some are modernist, some idealistic, and some abstract.

M. Senathipathi has had many solo exhibitions in India, Amsterdam and Morocco and his work in the permanent collection of the Academy of Fine Arts in Calcutta.

Suhas Roy has studied at the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris and paints in poetic imagery. His work is in many private collections and the permanent collection of the Chandigarth Museum and the National Gallery of Modern Art in New Delhi.

Deepak Madhukar Sonar’s abstracted landscapes of intensely warm tones have received awards from Art Society of India and the Bombay Society. Among his interests are the effects of global warming.

A native of Calcutta, Dilip Chaudhury, received a gold medal from the Indian College of Art and Draftsmanship. His black and white paintings of the Bengali countryside bathed in monsoon rains are in collections around the world.

T. Vaikuntam’s bold and striking figurative work has been in exhibits in New York, London, and Kassal, Germany, and can also be found in the National Gallery of Modern Art in New Delhi.

“We are truly fortunate to have such a rare collection of contemporary Indian art on view at Princeton Day School,” commented Gallery Director Jody Erdman.

“Confluence: Contemporary Indian Art” is open to the public from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday when school is in session, and by appointment on weekends. For more information, call (609) 924-6700 x 1772 or visit: www.pds.org.

quakerbridgemall

During October, Brighton Collectibles in the Quaker Bridge Mall is joining forces with St. Francis Medical Center and has identified the hospital as the recipient of a portion of the proceeds on the sale of their special limited-edition bracelet ‘2014 Power of Pink bracelet’. Ten dollars from the sale of every sixty dollar bracelet sold will benefit St. Francis Medical Center’s ‘Are You At Risk’ Cancer Program. The founders of the Brighton Corporation support a variety of charities including the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. Brighton has donated nearly $7 million to date. St. Francis Medical Center’s “Are You at Risk” Cancer Program is the result of a continuing partnership with Susan G. Komen since April 2008, resulting in community-based education for 1,000 and mammography for 1,150 Trenton women who would otherwise not have access to these services.

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Witherspoon Grill’s sixth annual Harvest and Music Festival, benefitting the Trenton Area Soup Kitchen, brought the colors of the season to Hinds Plaza Sunday. (Photo by Emily Reeves)

 

October 9, 2014

Motor vehicle crashes claim the lives of more than 500 New Jersey residents each year. In an effort to reduce the number of fatalities, a country-wide safety initiative, “Put the Brakes on Fatalities Day,” takes place each year on October 10. This Friday, all drivers, pedestrians, motorcyclists and bicyclists are encouraged to be exceptionally careful so that for at least one day, there will be no fatalities on New Jersey’s roads. The Princeton Police Department is asking Princeton residents to join the day-long effort and is encouraging motorists to obey all traffic laws, including buckling up, every ride; driving the posted speed limit; avoiding distractions while driving; and always being safe and sober behind the wheel. The Department will be conducting increased selective enforcement details focusing on speeding, seatbelt and illegal cell phone use violations throughout the course of the day. For more information, contact Sgt. Thomas Murray 609.921.2100 ext. 1879 or via email to tmurray@princetonnj.gov, or visit: www.brakesonfatalities.org.

October 8, 2014

Basketball showmen the Harlem Wizards are coming to Princeton High School (PHS) on Sunday, October 12, at 2 p.m. The team will showcase their amazing basketball tricks and present some friendly competition when they play against the home team of the Princeton Education Foundation All-Stars, which includes teachers from across the school district.

Tickets range from $10 to $15 and are available at www.harlemwizards.com/schedules and at PHS on game day. For more information, email PEFallstars@gmail.com or call 609.806.4214.

Motor vehicle crashes claim the lives of more than 500 New Jersey residents each year. In an effort to reduce the number of fatalities, a country-wide safety initiative, “Put the Brakes on Fatalities Day,” takes place each year on October 10. This Friday, all drivers, pedestrians, motorcyclists and bicyclists are encouraged to be exceptionally careful so that for at least one day, there will be no fatalities on New Jersey’s roads.

The Princeton Police Department is asking Princeton residents to join the day-long effort and is encouraging motorists to obey all traffic laws, including buckling up, every ride; driving the posted speed limit; avoiding distractions while driving; and always being safe and sober behind the wheel.

The Department will be conducting increased selective enforcement details focusing on speeding, seatbelt and illegal cell phone use violations throughout the course of the day.

In 2013, 542 individuals lost their lives in motor vehicle-related crashes in New Jersey, a decrease from the previous year’s number of 589. The decline continues a downward trend in motor vehicle fatalities. The 2013 number of motor vehicle related deaths was the lowest in the State since the 1940s.

“Put the Brakes on Fatalities Day not only raises awareness about the individual responsibility we have for our driving behaviors, but also engages drivers in making positive changes behind the wheel every day of the year,” said Sgt. Thomas Murray of the Princeton Police Department, who will answer any questions or concerns at (609) 921-2100 ext. 1879 or via email to tmurray@princetonnj.gov.

For more information, visit: www.brakesonfatalities.org.

 

EAT YOUR VEGETABLES: Garden State on Your Plate brings Princeton University chefs to local elementary schools this month to help educate children about appreciating locally grown produce. Adorned in chard grown by Jess Niederer of Chicadee Creek Farm in Pennington, the Princeton Tiger is joined by Smitha Haneef, executive director of campus dining; Rob Harbison, executive chef; and Brad Ortega, chef manager.

EAT YOUR VEGETABLES: Garden State on Your Plate brings Princeton University chefs to local elementary schools this month to help educate children about appreciating locally grown produce. Adorned in chard grown by Jess Niederer of Chicadee Creek Farm in Pennington, the Princeton Tiger is joined by Smitha Haneef, executive director of campus dining; Rob Harbison, executive chef; and Brad Ortega, chef manager.

Swiss chard is about to take over Princeton. During the last two weeks of this month, the ruffly green vegetable with a ruby-red spine will appear in storefronts, window displays, planters, and on menus all over town. Bent Spoon will have chard ice cream on its list of flavors. Mediterra, Olsson’s, and the brand-new Jammin’ Crepes are among the eateries planning to include the crinkly vegetable as part of their offerings.

It’s all part of Garden State on Your Plate, a program taking place in the Princeton Public Schools that brings children together with chefs and local farmers. The goal is to educate young palates and make kids “food literate” from an early age. Funded by a $12,000 grant from Princeton University this year, the program is poised to begin its third season with four sessions each at Community Park, Riverside, Johnson Park, and Littlebrook schools.

“We want to expose the entire elementary school population to well-prepared, locally grown produce, and bring the whole community to the table around the idea that we’re really fortunate to live in the Garden State,” said Karla Cook, a founder with Fran McManus, Dorothy Mullen, and Diane Landis of the Princeton School Gardens Cooperative, Inc. in 2006. Garden State on Your Plate grew out of the school gardens initiative, an edible garden started by Ms. Mullen at Riverside Elementary School.

 “Elementary school is the perfect time to introduce children to new foods. They’re out of their own homes, they’re open to new things,” said Ms. McManus “We have these wonderful chefs because we want this first experience for the children to be the best — the best of what a beet or chard can taste like.”

On October 30, the Princeton School Gardens Cooperative and Ms. Mullen will be among the honorees at the Princeton Family YMCA’s annual Centennial Awards, for outstanding commitment and leadership in improving the community’s health and well-being. Also being honored are Tracy Sipprelle, founder of Bee Fit with Tracy and Make a Child Smile; Dr. Elliott Sigal, past executive vice president, chief scientific officer and president of research and development at Bristol-Myers Squibb; and Christoph Hunt, an internist at University Medical Center at Princeton.

Ms. Cook and Ms. McManus spoke about their project last Thursday while seated in the Princeton Public Library’s Terra Libri cafe. Outside on Hinds Plaza, the weekly Princeton Farmers Market was in full swing. “People don’t realize how much farming there is here,” said Ms. Cook, who is the former New Jersey restaurant critic for The New York Times. “When you fly over this part of New Jersey, it’s amazing how many farms there are. And they’re focused on produce.”

Making children and the community aware of that fact is just one goal of Garden State on Your Plate. Designed to reach the district’s 1,320 students in kindergarten through fifth grade and their families as well as teachers and staff members in the schools, it earned rave reviews in its first two years.

“To the kids, these chefs are like rock stars. They want their autographs,” said Shannon Conner, a mother of three girls and the owner of Indigo by Shannon Conner Interiors on Palmer Square. There is a marked difference between the way Ms. Conner’s two teenage daughters, who did not experience the program, and her nine-year-old Littlebrook student, who does, think about food.

“My youngest daughter comes home from these tastings very enthusiastic,” said Ms. Conner, who has been active in efforts to improve school lunches over the years. “She tastes and finds these vegetables that look funny or have scary names, and finds they are actually good. She really enjoys the tastings. It’s a fun thing for them to do. It’s exciting, and the whole school participates.”

Parents help the chefs prepare the vegetables at each session. “There is such an energy; the kids love it,” Ms. Conner enthused. “They do the vegetables raw first, then cooked in some way, and then seasoned in a different way. The kids taste all three and see the differences. Along the way, they are treated with respect in regard to their opinions. Every kid gets to share their thoughts.”

The pilot program of Garden State on Your Plate was in 2010, funded with a grant of $30,000 from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The partners organized 10 tastings in two elementary schools. The funds allowed them to purchase things like kitchen carts and cookware, and also to collect data. “This time around, we know everybody will eat this food,” said Ms. McManus. “So it’s more celebratory.”

Beets were the star of the program last year. Chard will be the focus when the sessions begin October 21 at Community Park, to be followed during the ensuing two weeks at Riverside, Johnson Park, and Littlebrook. The children will be joined by farmer Jess Niederer of Chickadee Creek Farm and chefs Smitha Haneef and Rob Harbison from Princeton University Campus Dining to watch how chard can be prepared and learn how its flavor can be altered.

Cheese and mushrooms are on the roster for November, led by chef Terry Strong of Mediterra and farmer Eran Wajswol of Valley Shepherd Creamery and Phillips Mushroom Farm. April is for asparagus, with Witherspoon Grill chef Chris Graciano and farmers Pam, Gary, and Tannwen Mount of Terhune Orchards. In May, Agricola chef Josh Thomsen and Great Road Farm’s Steve Tomlinson teach the children the joys of radishes.

The chefs go out of their way to include not only the parents, but the children, in preparations at each session. “I believe that the chef giving them a job to do changes the whole calculus of the moment,” said Ms. McManus. “It’s valuable, even when some of the kids choose not to taste. They’re observing their peers, and that’s important.”

Plans are for Garden State On Your Plate to embrace middle school and high school students in the near future. While the high school part, geared to helping nurture an interest in food-related career paths, is still being developed, the middle school section, an after-school cooking program, has been set. Ms. Mullen, known in the community for her work with the Suppers program, will be teaching them food preparation. “The mission is to give children personal, hands-on experience and show them that delicious food and healthy food can be the same as long as you learn how to prepare it,” she said.

Ms. Mullen is also continuing a food and literature project at Riverside School that is an outgrowth of the school gardens program there. “It has been hugely popular and is a real game changer about how children eat,” she said.

The fact that school garden produce is now allowed in the cafeteria makes a big difference. Nutri-Serve, which is the new food service management company for Princeton Public Schools, is participating in the push for educating children about where their food comes from and how it can be prepared.

“One of the things we’re so tickled about is how excited they are to stand by with us at tastings and put the food on their menus,” said Ms. Cook. “We are just so excited about the receptiveness, not only from Nutri-Serve but from the whole embrace of the school system, the businesses, and the town leaders. It’s a myth that kids won’t eat these foods. They just have to be well prepared, and the message is getting across.”

A draft of an ordinance that would merge historic preservation policies from Princeton’s former Borough and Township was presented to the consolidated town’s Planning Board last week. Preservation proponents who attended the meeting expressed several concerns and pushed for changes in the draft document.

Chief among their complaints is a $3,000 escrow fee for applications for historic districts and buffer districts. A proposed $1,000 fee for concept reviews was eliminated after lengthy discussion during the meeting.

Resident John Heilner commended the Planning Board for recommending the removal of that fee, but said that the $3,000 fees, which were in neither the former Borough or Township ordinances, “will work to discourage resident participation in preserving our communal heritage. They will stifle and chill citizens’ initiative and motivation to apply for historic determinations.”

In a letter sent last month to the Planning Board by members of the Historic Preservation Commission (HPC), chairperson Julie Capozzoli wrote, “The purpose of escrow is to provide a fund against which professional review fees may be charged, and is a benefit to the taxpayers as it lowers administrative costs. Over the last few years taxpayers have spent six to 10 thousand dollars on review of districts that have not been adopted. The escrow fee proposed for review of historic district designations prepared by parties other than the HPC is intended to ensure that all proposals being placed before the HPC and the professional staff meet the requirements of the ordinance. The HPC’s intent in establishing an escrow fee is to encourage groups to work in partnership with the Commission, not to discourage historic preservation in our community.”

Mr. Heilner argued that even the appearance of the $3,000 fee would be a deterrent to citizen participation. “It leaves a big question in the public’s mind. What if the HPC doesn’t ‘take up’ our proposal? It’s nice to say that the $3,000 fee will be waived if the HPC does take it up and approve it going forward, but suppose the HPC calendar is ‘just too full’?”

A few days after the meeting, Mr. Heilner said that he commends the HPC for taking the two complicated ordinances and putting them together. “They did a great job,” he said. “But all of a sudden out of the blue come these two things that were never in either of the previous ordinances. It seems like they are anti-historic-preservation. They’re making it more difficult for residents to not just designate a historic district, but even a single historic site.”

Mr. Heilner lives in the town’s western section, and has been a proponent of designating parts of the neighborhood a historic district.

The argument that the $3,000 fee goes to fund staff work on reviewing applications does not sit well with Mr. Heilner and the others who spoke at the meeting, including former Township Mayor Jim Floyd and Princeton Battlefield Society member Kip Cherry. “I don’t buy it,” Mr. Heilner said. “What are our taxes going for? Why do we have a historic preservation officer?”

The residents also disagree with staff’s assessment that because historic designations are part of zoning, they should carry escrow fees like other applications for zoning variances. “This completely fails to recognize that historic preservation benefits all the residents of Princeton — not an individual property owner like other zoning variance applications,” Mr. Heilner said in his remarks to the Planning Board.

Other concerns noted by the residents who spoke at the meeting have to do with a new definition of “historic site,” and other issues. The next step is for Princeton Council’s code review subcommittee to review the Planning Board’s recommendations and then bring the proposal before Council at a date to be determined.

 

GIVING BACK: "I want all students to believe in the idea that their Pennington education prepares them to give back to the world rather than giving them a leg up on getting ahead in the world." Headmaster William S. Hawkey, PhD is proud of the education available to students at The Pennington School.

GIVING BACK: “I want all students to believe in the idea that their Pennington education prepares them to give back to the world rather than giving them a leg up on getting ahead in the world.” Headmaster William S. Hawkey, PhD is proud of the education available to students at The Pennington School.

Dedicated to educating students for nearly two centuries, The Pennington School is one of the oldest private schools in the United States.

Founded in 1838 by the New Jersey Conference of the Methodist Church, it opened its doors in 1840, and was originally known as the Methodist Episcopal Male Seminary. That first year, the school was housed in one building and enrolled three students under the tutelage of one teacher.

Fast forward to 2014. Today, 487 day and boarding students in grades six through 12 attend the school, which is located at 112 West Delaware Avenue in Pennington. Four academic buildings (a new humanities building, named for alumni Kenneth Yen, is expected to open in 2015), library, campus center, dining hall, health center, wellness center, fitness center, indoor swimming pool, outdoor tennis courts, and sports playing fields are all fixtures on the school’s 54 acre campus.

One hundred faculty members (half of whom live on campus) lead a rigorous college preparatory program. Honors and advanced placement courses are available in many disciplines, and The Pennington School students typically have a 100 percent college admission success rate.

Distinguishing Factor

“I think what attracts most families to private school education is the intimacy of our education,” notes William S. Hawkey, PhD who became headmaster in July. “The largest classes here have 16 students, and the typical class size is 13. The relationship that develops between faculty members and students brings about the best learning experience.”

As it has evolved over the years, the school has remained true to its guiding principles, he adds. “Our roots are in the John Wesley Methodist tradition, which speaks to inclusivity. We believe we are the school with a soul. It comes from our being a religiously-affiliated school that celebrates all denominations. It gives the kids an opportunity to explore spirituality. This is a distinguishing feature of our school.”

When the New Jersey Conference of the Methodist Church founded the school, it identified three guiding principles: “The education of the physical, the training of the mental, and the grounding of the soul in character.”

These principles reflected the vision of John Wesley, the founder of Methodism, who envisioned schools as places that cared for the whole individual. Central to this philosophy was the belief that the real purpose of education is not just to fill students with information, but to enable them to think, points out a school information statement.

Such beliefs were reinforced by Dr. Francis Green, one of The Pennington School’s most influential headmasters. It was he who emphasized the importance of “Honor, Virtue, and Humility,” three words which have become a focus of The Pennington School experience.

“We work hard to make sure that our students become ethical and well-educated young adults: people who are globally aware, work collaboratively, think critically, and communicate effectively, and who are engaged in their communities. Ours is a community built on mutual responsibility and trust, where personal ethics and moral behavior are emphasized. We also have a robust global studies program,” points out Dr. Hawkey.

In The Forefront

The school has been in the forefront of social and moral innovations in many ways over the years, he adds.

Originally enrolling boys only, in 1854, it became a co-ed institution. “The school was empowered by the New Jersey Legislature to confer the degree of Mistress of English Literature and Mistress of Liberal Arts upon young ladies who had finished their course of study,” notes a school statement.

In 1910, however, it reverted to educating boys exclusively, and then girls were admitted again in 1972. Now, boys and girls are enrolled in equal numbers at the school.

“Our admission standards are in line with our roots,” says Dr. Hawkey. “We have traditionally been diverse, and we continue to be broadly diverse.”

Indeed, currently, students representing 16 countries and 12 U.S. states are enrolled at the school.

“We also have a small college preparatory support program for students with learning differences,” adds Dr. Hawkey, “It includes high-ability kids who are dyslexic and those with ADHD.”

Individual Excellence

This innovative Center for Learning program was introduced in 1975, well before many other schools began to identify and offer programs for these students. It has been very successful, and the students in this program have gone on to college.

Dr. Hawkey, who has been at The Pennington School for more than 30 years as a teacher and coach, is very proud of the school’s focus on each individual student. “This is a place that cares about kids and treats them as individuals. Our mission is to develop individual excellence.

“It’s very much about educating the whole person,” he continues. “We believe in balance, which includes the most challenging academic program, but also trying out for the school play, the sports teams, etc. It makes for happy and healthy students.

“With 487 students, there are many varieties of kids with different make-ups and personalities. We offer them a place where they can find balance.

“They also get a feeling of balance from the adults here, on the playing field, in the residences, and at meals together with the faculty. That all helps to emphasize that this school community really takes care of the people here. We have a guidance program, and the kids meet every week with their advisor. They talk about courses, studying, and discuss what’s on their mind, what’s going on.”

A variety of student leadership programs is offered, and students can serve as proctors, peer leaders, and also hall prefects for boarding students. Opportunities to participate in student government and community service are also available.

Service Programs

“The students are involved in many service and volunteer programs,” says Dr. Hawkey. “There are many opportunities to do this, ranging from weekly tutoring of elementary school kids to trips over the holidays to such places as Haiti and Kentucky, where help is needed in various areas.”

They are also involved locally with the Crisis Ministry and HomeFront, he adds. The students plan a holiday party every year with gifts for the HomeFront families.

An engaging arts program at the school includes drama, music, fine arts, with plays, concerts, and exhibitions frequently presented.

Extra curricular activities are abundant, with many clubs — from chess, to languages, to technology, to the environment — all available, as are opportunities to contribute to the school’s literary magazine, year book, and newspaper.

A full sports program includes teams in a variety of sports, such as football, baseball, soccer, tennis, lacrosse, etc. for boys and girls.

“We have had a Pennington School football team for 138 years, one of the oldest of any private school,” reports Dr. Hawkey. “We take the whole issue of injuries very seriously and have a concussion testing protocol. It’s a distinguishing factor of our athletic program.”

Honor, Respect, Trust

Honor, respect, and trust are important at the school, and the students adhere to an honor code, which governs their behavior in all areas of their life, including honesty regarding academic exams, papers, etc.

In addition, as has been mentioned, spirituality is a significant focus at the school, and is deemed to be an important factor in fostering character and morality among the students.

Over the years, the students and their religious beliefs have diversified, and in turn, the school’s chapel services have changed, points out Dr. Hawkey. Today, students at the school come from many faiths and traditions, including Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Islam.

A school information statement notes that “Chapel services are a peaceful time for reflection and thought about life and love, friendship and community, right and wrong — themes that are important in every religion and in every country in the world.”

Dr. Hawkey looks forward to continuing The Pennington School tradition of excellence and service, at the same time focusing on the particular educational challenges of the 21st century. His long association with the school places him in a unique position to lead and build a school community while continuing to teach psychology and public speaking, and coach girl’s soccer.

“As a member of the faculty, I fully embraced the Pennington philosophy. I love being in the classroom and working with the kids, helping them get to that point of discovery and understanding. It is very gratifying.”

Dr. Hawkey’s position as headmaster is a dream come true, he adds. “As headmaster, I have a vision of a school community, and I hope to be able to implement that vision. My job includes overseeing the entire school program. That’s every aspect of it — from the grounds and housekeeping to academics.

“One of the biggest challenges for a school like Pennington is meeting the fund-raising challenge. It’s a number one question for independent schools to provide the resources you need. First and foremost, you need a top-notch faculty. I want Pennington to grow, to push the envelope academically school-wide. I want our program to be second to none. I see myself as a steward of The Pennington School’s image and mission.”

 

book mug 1On Wednesday, October 15, poet Ben Lerner and fiction writer Steven Millhauser will read from their works as part of the Althea Ward Clark W’21 Reading Series of the Program in Creative Writing at the Lewis Center for the Arts. The reading, beginning at 4:30 p.m. at the Berlind Theatre at the McCarter Theatre Center, is free and open to the public.

Ben Lerner, who will be introduced by Pulitzer Prize-winning poet and Princeton University professor of Creative Writing Paul Muldoon, is the author of several full-length poetry collections, including Mean Free Path (2010) and Angle of Yaw (2006), which was a finalist for the National Book Award and the Northern California Book Award. Noting his use of “arresting lines that are comical, anxious, and hauntingly true,” Boston Review critic Craig Morgan Teicher described Lerner’s aim in Angle of Yaw to “juxtapose discordant elements of noise such that their collective racket cancels each component out, leaving behind a language purged by negation — refreshed, defiant, and wholly self-aware.” Also a fiction writer and essayist, Lerner’s novels include Leaving the Atocha Station (2011) and 10:04 (2014).

Steven Millhauser, who will be introduced by novelist and professor of Creative Writing Chang-rae Lee, is the author of numerous works of fiction including Martin Dressler: The Tale of an American Dreamer, which was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 1997, and Dangerous Laughter, a New York Times Book Review Best Book of the Year. His most recent collection, We Others: New and Selected Stories, won the Story Prize and was a finalist for the PEN/Faulkner Award. In awarding the Story Prize the judges called We Others “a powerful and intriguing collection of stories, marked by page after page of beautifully written, intelligent, and sensitive prose.”

Mr. Millhauser is a recipient of the Lannan Award and has been honored by the American Academy of Arts and Letters. His work has been translated into 15 languages. His story “Eisenheim the Illusionist” was the basis of the 2006 film The Illusionist. He currently teaches at Skidmore College and lives in Saratoga Springs, New York.

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Members of the Princeton High girls’ tennis squad jump for joy at the Mercer County Park courts last Wednesday afternoon after winning the team title in the Mercer County Tournament (MCT). It was the program’s first MCT team crown since 1984. See page 32 (“Rosca, Lewis Lead the Way With Singles Titles As PHS Girls’ Tennis Finally Earns MCT Crown”) for more details on PHS’s championship performance. (Photo by Christian Herzog, Courtesy of the PHS Department of Athletics)

October 6, 2014
Princeton resident and NBC News Chief Medical Editor and Correspondent Dr. Nancy Snyderman is to be flown back from Liberia where she has been reporting on the Ebola outbreak in Monrovia. A cameraman on her team has tested positive for the disease, the fourth American to have contracted Ebola in Liberia. According to NBC News President Deborah Turness, “he will be flown back to the United States for treatment at a medical center that is equipped to handle Ebola patients.” The rest of the crew, including Dr. Snyderman, are being closely monitored and show no symptoms or warning signs. As a precautionary measure, she will be quarantined for 21 days.
October 2, 2014

The Williams/Transco company, which plans to install a natural gas pipeline on the Princeton Ridge, has filed a revised construction plan that commits to turn off the gas in an existing, adjacent pipeline that was put in 56 years ago. The company filed the amended plan with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission this week, according to a press release from the Princeton Ridge Coalition, a local citizens’ group.

“After a lot of discussion, Chris Brown and the Williams engineers are now taking our concerns seriously and worked out a much safer construction plan. We greatly appreciate their efforts,” said Rob Goldston, who chairs the Coalition’s Safety Committee.

The company will use three crews working in tandem to accelerate the timeline and reduce the length of the outage for their customers. The plan calls for replacing the natural gas with water in the 36-inch pipeline before removing boulders currently on top of the existing pipeline. Williams will then build a bridge on top of that pipeline to allow heavy equipment to work while constructing the new line nearby.

After the new pipeline is installed and the trench is backfilled, they will hydrotest the old pipeline at one and a half times maximum operating pressure to make visible injurious dents or other damage that may have occurred during construction. Following testing, the line will be refilled with gas.

According to the Williams company, the plan can only be implemented if extra hours are approved for Mondays to Saturdays, and occasionally Sundays. The Coalition plans to meet with affected residents to discuss the implications of extended work hours.

 

October 1, 2014

The Princeton Police Department has announced the graduation of Lt. Robert Toole from the 257th session of the FBI National Academy located in Quantico, Virginia, along with men and woman from 49 states, including members of law enforcement agencies from the District of Columbia, 26 international countries, three military organizations, and three federal civilian organizations. Internationally known for its academic excellence, the National Academy Program, held at the FBI Academy, offers 10 weeks of advanced investigative, management, and fitness training for selected officers having proven records as professionals within their agencies. On average, these officers have 19 years of law enforcement experience and usually return to their agencies to serve executive-level positions. A total of 47,464 graduates now represent the FBI National Academy since it began in July 1935. Of this number, approximately 29,951 are still active in law enforcement work. Other Princeton Police Department members who are graduates of the FBI National Academy are Chief Nicholas Sutter and Lt. Christopher Morgan.

A GOOD PLACE TO AGE: At the Princeton Senior Resource Center’s recent gala fundraiser, executive director Susan Hoskins, right, and Princeton Mayor Liz Lempert shared the good news issued of the World Health Organization’s designation of Princeton as an age-friendly community.(Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

A GOOD PLACE TO AGE: At the Princeton Senior Resource Center’s recent gala fundraiser, executive director Susan Hoskins, right, and Princeton Mayor Liz Lempert shared the good news issued of the World Health Organization’s designation of Princeton as an age-friendly community. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

When Susan Hoskins started investigating the World Health Organization’s (WHO) designations of “age friendly communities” over a year ago, she felt as if she were reading a description of Princeton. Among the requirements were a walkable downtown, access to cultural activities, safe and affordable transportation, and a range of housing options.

“I thought to myself, this sounds like Princeton already,” said Hoskins, the executive director of the Princeton Senior Resource Center, during an interview in her office last week. This past summer, Princeton became the first community in New Jersey to win the designation, joining other towns across the world in the WHO’s Network of Age Friendly Communities, which aims to help people age comfortably and easily in their own homes.

Being named to this network has real significance. “It makes a really important statement that you care about older adults, who often feel invisible,” Ms. Hoskins said. “There is a shifting demographic, and we’re going to rely on older people more and more.”

The World Health Organization began recognizing communities as “age friendly” in 2006. “I read about it about a year and a half ago in the AARP [American Association of Retired Persons] magazine,” Ms. Hoskins recalled.

 “Then I read a report by New Jersey Future that said Princeton was one of only four towns in New Jersey to score high on their criteria for great places to age. I soon found out that no towns or communities in the state had been awarded the WHO designation.”

Intrigued, Ms. Hoskins approached Mayor Liz Lempert, who was enthusiastic about having Princeton be recognized. They enlisted the help of the Princeton University Volunteer Consulting Initiative, made up of graduate students who provide advice to local organizations. The students came up with a community survey about aging in Princeton last spring. Ms. Hoskins passed along her information to the AARP, which in turn took it for consideration to the WHO.

The designation was announced at the PSRC’s recent fall gala event. In the publication given to those who attended, Mayor Lempert wrote, “As we read down the WHO’s list of recommended actions, we were able to check off item after item as things Princeton already does. It was obvious we should apply, as it is great to be recognized for all the qualities that make Princeton a wonderful and livable community.”

The next step in the process, as laid out by the AARP, is to form a task force, to be made up of “people from government, consumers, and people who serve seniors,” Ms. Hoskins said. The group is to identify areas of accomplishment and areas of need. The designation will be re-evaluated after two years, and again in five years.

“The thing I like about the process is that it sounds like the goal is to give you five years to make this an organic part of the community,” Ms. Hoskins said, “to get it built into the consciousness of the community. It has been an ongoing process to get to this point, and it will continue to be.”

 

On Sunday, October 19, from 3 to 5 p.m., a community discussion on the hazards of driving with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and what parents, teens, educators and adults can do to create safe drivers, will take place at University Medical Center of Princeton 1 Plainsboro Road.

“Dangerous Curves Ahead” will feature speakers Thomas J. Power, PhD and director, Center for Management of ADHD at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia; and Pamela Fischer, MLP, director: NJ Teen Safe Driving Coalition.

According to research, young drivers with ADHD are two to four times more likely to have traffic accidents, three times as likely to have injuries, four times more likely to be at fault, and six to eight times more likely to have their licenses suspended. Effective behavioral treatments are needed that can help young drivers with ADHD while driving, including additional behind the wheel hours and formal training, the use of cell phone blocking technology, and a driver’s contract.

Based on the research, clinicians should educate patients and caregivers about the increased risk of adverse outcomes among untreated individuals with ADHD, and the role of medication in improving driving performance.

For more information, visit www.chadd.net/template.cfm?affid=153&p=about.

Shortly after the recent fatal mauling of a 22-year-old Rutgers student by a black bear in New Jersey’s 572-acre Apshawa Nature Preserve, the Princeton Police Department has drawn attention to guidelines from the Division of Fish and Wildlife. Princeton residents can access numerous safety tips through he municipal website at princetonnj.gov. “Comprehensive information on bear safety is available for home owners as well as hikers,” said Lt. Robert Currier, Friday.

It is hoped that the information will inform Princeton residents about the best ways to maintain safety for their homes and for themselves if they ever come into contact with a black bear.

Edison resident Darsh Patel was with four friends when they encountered the bear. The friends bolted in separate directions and it was some time before Mr. Patel’s body was discovered by members of a volunteer search and rescue unit. The Rutgers student had sustained multiple bites and claw wounds.

According to police reports of the incident, rescuers told police that the bear had been circling Mr. Patel’s body and was behaving aggressively toward them. They had tried to scare off the animal by creating loud noises for some 30 minutes. A West Milford police officer killed the animal with a shotgun. The bear was found to be a 299-pound male.

According to the NJ Department of Environmental Protection Division of Fish and Wildlife (“Know the Bear Facts: Black Bears in New Jersey Bear Safety Tips) black bears “by nature tend to be wary of humans and avoid people.”

However, the directive goes on, “if you encounter a black bear in your neighborhood or outdoors while hiking or camping, follow these common-sense safety tips: Never feed or approach a bear; remain calm; make the bear aware of your presence by speaking in an assertive voice, singing, clapping your hands, or making other noises; make sure the bear has an escape route; If a bear enters your home, provide it with an escape route by propping all doors open; avoid direct eye contact, which may be perceived by a bear as a challenge, and never run from a bear. Instead, slowly back away.”

Specific instructions include: “scare the bear away, make loud noises by yelling, banging pots and pans or using an airhorn; make yourself look as big as possible by waving your arms; and if you are with someone else, stand close together with your arms raised above your head.”

“The bear may utter a series of huffs, make popping jaw sounds by snapping its jaws and swat the ground. These are warning signs that you are too close. If a bear stands on its hind legs or moves closer, it may be trying to get a better view or detect scents in the air. It is usually not a threatening behavior. Black bears will sometimes “bluff charge” when cornered, threatened or attempting to steal food. Stand your ground, then slowly back away. Black bear attacks are extremely rare.”

The Division of Fish and Wildlife has a policy of fostering coexistence between people and bears; the most common bear problem in New Jersey is black bears getting into their garbage.

Last year, Town Topics reported on several black bear sightings in Princeton. In June, one was tranquilized and relocated from the campus of The College of New Jersey by personnel from the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife to the Alexauken Creek Wildlife Management Area in northeast Hunterdon County, the nearest Wildlife Management Area.

Black bears are the largest land mammal in New Jersey. They are an integral part of the state’s natural heritage and a vital component of healthy ecosystems. Since the 1980s the Garden State’s black bear population has been increasing and expanding its range both southward and eastward from the forested areas of northwestern New Jersey. Within the most densely populated state in the nation, black bears are thriving and there are now confirmed bear sightings in all 21 of New Jersey’s counties.

Bear safety tips are listed on the NJDWM website and also to the state website: www.state.nj.us/dep/fgw/bearfacts.

And remember, Never feed bears! It’s illegal in New Jersey, and it’s dangerous. Anyone who feeds bears could face a penalty of up to $1,000 for each offense.

If a bear is spotted, immediately call the local police and/or report black bear damage or nuisance behavior to the DEP’s 24-hour, toll-free hotline at 1-877 WARN DEP (1-877-927-6337).

 

cory booker

Senator Cory Booker opened a workshop designed to assist university professors and non-profit organizations tap into the resources of the National Endowment for the Humanities and the New Jersey Council for the Humanities last week at Rider University with the words: “America needs more poets.” Mr. Booker, who currently serves on three U. S. Senate committees: Science and Transportation, Small Business and Entrepreneurship, Environment and Public Works, spoke of the critical nature of the humanities to the American psyche and to the nation’s well-being and future success, and went on to describe his own upbringing and education. He ended with lines from Langston Hughes’s poem “Let America Be America Again:” “O Let America be America again/Let it be the dream it used to be./Let it be the pioneer on the plain/Seeking a home where he himself is free./(America never was America to me).”

NAMI Mercer N.J., an affiliate of the National Alliance on Mental Illness, will commemorate Mental Illness Awareness Week by hosting its sixth annual Harvest of Hope Wellness Conference on Saturday, October 11 from 8:30 a.m. to 3:15 p.m. at the Presbyterian Church of Lawrenceville. Throughout the observance period from October 5-11, the organization will sponsor educational and anti-stigma activities around the county.

This annual education event, funded in part by the Lawrence Township Community Foundation, is open to individuals and families affected by mental illness as well as the general public. The focus this year is “Recovery through Discovery.” Melody Moezzi, an Iranian-American activist, attorney, and award-winning author will deliver the keynote address. Her latest book, Haldol and Hyacinths: A Bipolar Life, interweaves her experiences with both clinical and cultural bipolarity.

The conference then will offer attendees a choice of concurrent wellness workshops, with one session in the morning and another during the afternoon. The $10 registration fee includes breakfast and lunch. Although membership in NAMI Mercer is not required, there is an incentive price of $35 to join and attend the conference.

For more information and to register for the Harvest of Hope conference, go to www.namimercer.org or call 609-799-8994.

Ms. Moezzi will also appear on Friday, October 10 from 7-9 p.m. at Princeton Public Library, where she will deliver a book talk about her memoir. Call (609) 924-9529 or visit www.princetonlibrary.org for information.

Paul Sigmund IV, 49, of San Francisco, was arrested Sunday morning for DWI and possession of heroin and drug paraphernalia after allegedly striking a pole in the Park Place parking lot and fleeing the scene. His 2012 Chevy Malibu sustained a pushed in left front fender.

Mr. Sigmund is the son of Princeton University scholar of political theory, Paul Sigmund, who died on April 27, and former Princeton Borough mayor Barbara Boggs Sigmund, who died in 1990.

He had also served as a Mercer County freeholder and chief of staff to ex-mayor of Trenton Tony Mack.

In addition to the other charges, the Lawrence Township Municipal Court had a warrant for Sigmund for $120. After posting bail, he was released on his own recognizance.