September 20, 2017

Thousands of music lovers gathered in Palmer Square on Sunday for the 26th annual JazzFeast, which featured performances by some of the industry’s best jazz musicians and showcased food from many of the area’s finest restaurants. Fans share their favorite jazz greats in this week’s Town Talk, and more photos are on page 22A. (Photo by Erica M. Cardenas)

By Donald Gilpin

About 200 professors, colleagues, friends, their families, and other supporters gathered in Princeton University’s East Pyne Courtyard Friday evening to hold a candlelight vigil in support of Xiyue Wang, a graduate student who has been imprisoned in Iran for the past 13 months.

Speakers, who included Wang’s wife, two of his professors, and several of his colleagues and friends, focused mostly on Wang’s qualities as a person, a scholar, a husband, and father to a 4-year-old son. Those closest to Wang, 37, described him as a talented, ambitious, dedicated scholar, full of intellectual curiosity and interest in Iranian culture, a steadfast friend and a loving family man with a distinct flair for cooking.  more

By Anne Levin

During the public comment period at Princeton Council’s meeting on September 11, the issue of fire safety was raised by two residents of the town. Paul Driscoll and Alexi Assmus asked Council to consider making round-the-clock fire watches a requirement during construction of large-scale, wood housing.

Their request was motivated by the recent announcement that Sunrise Senior Living wants to construct a 76-unit development on North Harrison Street, near Princeton Shopping Center. The plans call for a two-story building with 52 units, and a one-story building with 25. more

By Donald Gilpin

In a “State of the Community” dialogue with Princeton business leaders at the Nassau Inn Tuesday morning, Mayor Liz Lempert, Municipal Engineer Deanna Stockton, and Police Chief Nick Sutter presented a positive picture of projects underway and challenges ahead for the community.

Though expressing concern about vacancies in office and retail space in town, Lempert pointed out a number of economic development projects already underway. “Many other communities are trying to invent what we have here naturally,” she said. She mentioned the high level of activity in Princeton, numerous public events, and placemaking projects including the farmers’ market, the Dohm Alley art exhibit, the parklet outside jaZams, the Arts Council’s pop-in spaces, and opportunities to enhance collaboration with Princeton University. more

SHARING HIS STORY: Chef Jeff Henderson, left, shown with the Trenton Rescue Mission’s chef David Jawidzik, paid a visit to the Mission last week and gave an inspirational talk to clients about his road from prison to celebrity chef, author, and motivational speaker.

By Anne Levin

It would be an understatement to say that Jeff Henderson had a challenging childhood in South Central Los Angeles. Raised in poverty by a single mother, he learned to make money — eventually, some $35,000 a week — selling cocaine and crack. It all caught up with him when, at the age of 23, he was arrested and sent to federal prison for drug trafficking.  more

WELCOME VISITORS: Margaret Vanmarke, left, a volunteer with HomeFriends, makes weekly visits to Eileen Behrens, right, to help keep her from becoming socially isolated. The Princeton Senior Resource Center program is celebrating its 30th anniversary.

By Anne Levin

When Princeton Senior Resource Center (PSRC) sends a volunteer to help a homebound elderly or disabled member of the community, they don’t choose just anybody. Participants in PSRC’s HomeFriends program, which is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, are matched with clients for similar interests, personalities, and needs. more

The Princeton’s Children’s Book Festival will take place on Saturday, September 23, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., rain or shine, on Hinds Plaza. More than 80 children’s literature authors and illustrators will participate in the festival, one of the largest of its kind on the East Coast. Fans of all ages will have the opportunity to purchase books supplied by jaZams, meet with authors and illustrators, and have their books signed. more

“WATER SHARING”: This painting by Nancie Gunkelman is featured in the exhibit “Same Moon: Diverse Voices of Nature,” at D&R Greenway’s Johnson Education Center, which runs through October 22. A reception will be held at the Center on Friday, September 29, from 5:30-7:30 p.m.

D&R Greenway Land Trust’s newest exhibition, “Same Moon: Diverse Voices of Nature,” shows how artists, whether in China, Africa, or the U.S., view nature through divergent lenses. Artists Kenneth J. Lewis Sr., Nancie Gunkelman, and Chih Yu Fan are unified in their appreciation for nature. Some of the artwork for this exhibition has been shipped from China. A reception will be held on Friday, September 29, from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at D&R Greenway’s Johnson Education Center, 1 Preservation Place, Princeton. more

“SHADOW AND LIGHT”: This painting by Paulette Van Roekens depicts a scene behind the stage of the Pennsylvania Academy of Music in the 1930s. It is included in the “New American Painting Collection” exhibit which will run at the Grantz Gallery and Conservation Studio in Doylestown, Pa., from October 1 through December 31.

Gratz Gallery and Conservation Studio has announced the unveiling of a “New American Painting Collection” exhibit. Many of these paintings have never been offered before and are fresh to the market. This special event is the latest exhibition at the gallery’s new location on Silo Hill Road in Doylestown, Pa. The exhibition will be held at the Gallery and Conservation Studio location from October 1 through December 31.  more

Local Princeton painter Cvetko Ivanov (known as Ivan) sells his original acrylic paintings every Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (weather permitting) on his front porch, located at 15 Vandeventer Avenue in the heart of Princeton. Originally from Bulgaria, Ivan specializes in images of flowers and the natural world. He is also an established muralist and has worked on several homes in Princeton, along with fine finishes for walls, ceilings, furniture, and mantels. To contact Ivan, call (609) 454-1334. 

“CHAPTER TWO”: Performances are underway for Pegasus Theatre Project’s production of “Chapter Two.” Directed by Jennifer Nasta Zefutie, the play runs through September 24 at the West Windsor Arts Center. Left to right: Leo Schneider (Frank Falisi, standing) and Faye Medwick (Sarah Stryker, standing) attempt to make — then stall — a match between George Schneider (Peter Bisgaier) and Jennie Malone (Heather Plank). (Photo by John M. Maurer)

By Donald H. Sanborn III

Pegasus Theatre Project is presenting Chapter Two at the West Windsor Arts Center. In Neil Simon’s bittersweet romantic comedy, a widowed novelist begins a relationship with a divorced actress. The match is facilitated and encouraged by the novelist’s brother and the actress’s friend.  more

NEW ERA AT PASSAGE: C. Ryanne Domingues has taken over as artistic director at Trenton’s Passage Theatre, replacing June Ballinger, who guided the company for more than two decades in creating and producing socially-relevant new plays and community-devised arts programming.

By Donald Gilpin

Trenton’s Passage Theatre Company has a new artistic director as it prepares for the opening of its fall season.

C. Ryanne Domingues, co-founder and former producing artistic director of Simpatico Theatre in Philadelphia, has taken over the leading role from June Ballinger, who announced last month that she would be stepping down after 22 years at the helm. Ballinger will return to her career as a writer, actor, and teacher, continuing her association with Passage as an artistic advisor for this season and teacher of adult acting classes. more

By Stuart Mitchner

When my wife and I checked into the Library Hotel in New York eight years ago, we were installed in the Paranormal Room. We didn’t ask for the Paranormal Room. If we’d known about the hotel’s subject area concept, we might have requested a room on the 7th floor (the Arts) or the 8th (Literature). Even so, we were okay with being in room 11.05 on the 9th floor (Philosophy), though neither of us has ever been seriously into fantasy, science fiction, or the occult unless you count teenage readings of Ray Bradbury, a few seasons of Star Trek, and a brief fling with Carlos Castaneda (a copy of The Art of Dreaming was on the bedside table, along with volumes on ghosts, ESP, and UFOs).  more

“LUMINA”: Westminster Kantorei’s new recording was released on the Westminster Choir College label on September 15. Recorded in the Princeton University Chapel and conducted by Amanda Quist, it features music from the Baroque and Renaissance periods that focus on the presence of light in our lives. “Lumina” is available from Amazon, iTunes, Spotify, and other major download and streaming sites.

Westminster Choir College has released Lumina, a new recording by Westminster Kantorei, conducted by Amanda Quist.  more

Guy Van Swearingen, left, and Michael Shannon star in A Red Orchid Theatre’s production of Sam Shepard’s “Simpatico” at McCarter Theatre, running now through October 15.  For tickets, visit or call (609) 258-2787. (Photo Credit: Richard Termine)

By Nancy Plum

Princeton Symphony Orchestra (PSO) has never been an ensemble to sneak into the new concert season, but especially this year, when the orchestra is riding a wave of high attendance, Music Director Rossen Milanov chose to open the year with a musical tour de force. Joined by the Westminster Symphonic Choir (of Westminster Choir College) and four up-and-coming vocal soloists, Princeton Symphony filled both the stage and seats  this past weekend with a performance of Ludwig van Beethoven’s towering Symphony No. 9, a work not often heard in Princeton for the understandable reasons of expense and musical demands. The expense portion of Saturday night’s performance (the concert was repeated Sunday afternoon) received a helping hand from the Edward T. Cone Foundation, and the musical difficulties of this work were well met by all involved. more

Carol Wojciechowicz officially cuts the ribbon to the Wojciechowicz Barn as Historical Society of Princeton Executive Director, Izzy Kasdin; Board Chair, Scott Sipprelle; and New Jersey Secretary of Agriculture Doug Fisher stand in support. Updike Farmstead is located at 354 Quaker Road in Princeton. 

FORM AND FUNCTION: “Plastic surgery is the most creative aspect of medicine,” explains Arthur W. Perry, MD, FACS. “It is the only discipline that is creative, looks at the entire body, and can improve function and appearance.”

“She was not unattractive, but she was not quite pretty, either. The subtle arrangement of bones and flesh that comprise the human face had conspired to make her ordinary.” —Daniel Silva, The Heist

By Jean Stratton

Plastic surgeon Arthur W. Perry, MD, FACS has the skills to help such a person described above to improve her appearance if she wishes. He can help her to look her best, to achieve the most appropriate image that is uniquely hers. more

STRONG START: Princeton University football player Stephen Carlson heads upfield last Saturday as Princeton hosted the University of San Diego in its season opener. Making his first career start, junior receiver Carlson came up big, making six catches for 94 yards and three touchdowns to help the Tigers prevail 27-17. Princeton plays at Lafayette on September 23. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Fireworks exploded over one side of Powers Field as the Princeton University football team ran on the field for its season opener last Saturday against visiting University of San Diego.

Minutes later, Princeton junior receiver Stephen Carlson helped ignite fireworks on the field for the Tigers. more

BREAKING THROUGH: Princeton High football player Evan Angelucci eludes a tackler in recent action. Junior running back Angelucci has emerged as a bright spot for PHS this fall. The Little Tigers, who moved to 0-3 with a 53-18 loss to Hightstown last Saturday, are next in action when they play at Lawrence High on September 28. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Having been outscored 75-0 in losing its first two games, the Princeton High football team reached into its bag of tricks as it hosted Hightstown last Saturday.

Looking to catch the Rams by surprise, PHS started the game with an onside kick. The gamble paid off as the Little Tigers recovered the ball and proceeded to march to the Hightstown five-yard-line. more

CLAWING BACK: Hun School field hockey player Claudine Chiminski goes after the ball in recent action. Senior captain Chiminski is bringing experience to the Hun midfield. The Raiders, who fell to 0-1-1 with a 3-2 loss to Pennington last Thursday, host Montgomery on September 22 before playing at Stuart County Day School on September 26. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

While Kathy Quirk acknowledges that her Hun School field hockey team lacks experience, she believes it possesses a lot of grit.

“We lost 12 seniors last year and the year before that we lost 13,” said Hun head coach Quirk. more

September 13, 2017

Classic cars and planes, helicopter rides, children’s activities, live music, a vendor fair, local food, and more were enjoyed by festival-goers at this Sunday’s Montgomery FunFest. The annual community event was held at Princeton Airport. (Photos by Charles R. Plohn)

COACHES’ CORNER: Princeton University football head coach Bob Surace talks with his coaches during the program’s recently held Media Day. Princeton is coming off an 8-2 campaign last fall that saw it share the Ivy League title with Penn. The Tigers get their 2017 season underway when they host the University of San Diego on September 16. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Although the Princeton University football team is coming off an 8-2 campaign in 2016 that saw it tie Penn for the Ivy League title and has been picked to finish first along with Harvard for the upcoming season by the media poll, Bob Surace doesn’t view his squad as a powerhouse just yet. more

By Donald Gilpin

With Florida still reeling from Hurricane Irma, and the effects of climate change dramatically apparent across the globe, Sustainable Princeton (SP) could not have chosen a more appropriate time to announce its $100,000 grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to develop a Climate Action Plan (CAP) for Princeton.

Sustainable Princeton, a nonprofit environmental organization, will partner with the town of Princeton to develop specific strategies, actions, and goals to lower the town’s greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) and prepare its infrastructure to withstand the increasing impacts of climate change. more