December 12, 2012

MEDICINE AND MEMORABILIA: Surrounded by a small section of his Brooklyn Dodgers collection, Dr. Carl C. Hoyler is preparing to pack it all up as he retires. The Princeton native, an internist, also counts the University of Pennsylvania and aviation among his varied interests, and both are represented on the walls of his soon to be vacated office on Witherspoon Street. (Photo by Lewis Bloom)

Carl C. Hoyler remembers when Route 1 had a speed limit of 35 and drivers sometimes had to stop to let cows from a dairy farm cross the road. That was back in the days when Princeton Medical Center was a small-town hospital and Dr. Hoyler, an internist, was one of the 120 or so physicians on staff.

“It was a small, county hospital, which was what I wanted,” he says, recalling his decision to practice in Princeton, his hometown, some 44 years ago. “Bigger is not better, at least in terms of a hospital. I’m sorry that it’s come to this — a big, mega-hospital. And that’s one of the reasons I’m retiring.”

Once the University Medical Center of Princeton added “at Plainsboro” to its name last May following its move to much expanded headquarters on Route 1, Dr. Hoyler knew it was time to close up shop. The 253 Witherspoon Street office building, which has housed his practice since 1969, is scheduled for demolition. His suite of offices, lined with photographs and memorabilia of his beloved Brooklyn Dodgers and his alma mater, the University of Pennsylvania, is slowly being dismantled.

“It actually feels very good,” Dr. Hoyler says of his pending retirement. “We have two grandchildren and one on the way, and there will be more time to visit them in California. But I’m really going to miss the patients. We’ve been sort of a family, and I’ve tried to make a supreme effort to get them to the right doctors. It’s very important.”

Most of Dr. Hoyler’s patients are senior citizens, some of whom have been with him since he started. “That was when Medicare just began,” he says. “Now close to 90 percent of them are on Medicare. They are very dear people. We’ve had a good run.”

Dr. Hoyler was five years old when his father, a physics professor at Lehigh University, accepted a job at RCA Labs and moved the family to Princeton. He went to elementary school in the building on Nassau Street that now houses Princeton University’s arts programs, and junior high at the old Quarry Street School, now the Waxwood Apartments. “That was a very important time in Princeton because of the integration that took place there in 1948,” he recalls. “Some of the best teachers I had were at that school.”

After graduating from Princeton High, Dr. Hoyler enrolled at the University of Pennsylvania (Penn). He attended New York Medical College before returning to Penn for his residency, which he finished in 1969. He is currently the proud president of the class of 1959.

Dr. Hoyler knew, when he finished his training, that he wanted to come home to Princeton. “I always liked this town,” he says. “I was a townie. A lot of people on staff may have gone to Princeton University, but not many grew up here.” His first two associates were Marvin Blumenthal and Joel Feldscher [“another townie,” he says], and he remembers them fondly. “They were among the most brilliant men I ever met in my life,” he says.

As Dr. Hoyler’s  practice grew, so did his collection of Brooklyn Dodgers memorabilia. “There’s nothing here after 1957,” he says of his walls of photographs, magazine covers, and other relics of the famed baseball team. The year 1957, when the Dodgers abandoned Brooklyn for Los Angeles, “was a dark period in my life,” he continues. “I lived and died with that team. I can remember every game the Dodgers played between 1947 and 1957. I began collecting as a kid, and this is only a small part of what I have. I’ll probably give it to [the Baseball Hall of Fame at] Cooperstown. It’s really one of a kind. I could spend hours discussing every picture in here.”

While he won’t be making his daily trips to the office anymore, Dr. Hoyler, who lives with his wife near Drumthwacket, will still be using his bicycle with bright yellow fenders to travel around town. “I got this at a hospital rummage sale several years ago,” he says. “If you’re riding around Princeton, you don’t need a fancy 25-speed. Mine is a three-speed and it’s fine. I don’t wear a helmet because I actually think it’s dangerous. You lose your peripheral
vision. But I have the yellow fenders as a concession to my wife, who was worried about my safety. So everyone can spot me.”

Dr. Hoyler leaves 253 Witherspoon Street with mixed feelings. “This building probably should have been torn down years ago,” he says. “It’s archaic. So I’ll shed no tears when it comes down. I refer to it as the dungeon. But there have been good times here. It’s been a nice scene for many years. I think I’ve seen the good of medicine in this town.”

AT THE UPDIKE FARMSTEAD: Celebrants at the recent dedication of the Sipprelle Unity Garden included (from left): Scott Sipprelle, Sonja Michaluk, Kristin Appleget, and Dudley Sipprelle

The reinstallation of a windmill at the Updike Farmstead was cause for celebration at a recent party hosted by The Historical Society of Princeton. Guests admired the handiwork of E&R Pumps and Windmills, a Bethel, Pennsylvania-based restorer, and viewed three new exhibitions in the farmhouse galleries, including early photographs of the windmill.

The Historical Society of Princeton purchased the six-acre Updike Farmstead from the estate of Stanley Updike in 2004. The original windmill was taken down in 2006 for safety reasons. Its recent restoration was underwritten by contributions from Steve and Treby Williams and Ann Lee Saunders Brown, and managed by architect Ronnie Bregenzer, who donated her time and services. Other contributors included Baxter Construction, and project engineer Harrison Hamnett. The pump house was refurbished by Sam Pirone.

“The windmill, which retains the original tank structure, is an iconic feature of the farmstead that will be the centerpiece for new environmental programs on site,” said Curator of Education Eve Mandel. These include the newly-dedicated Sipprelle Unity Garden.

The Unity Garden, which was made possible by a grant from Scott and Tracy Sipprelle, is now “at the core of education programs on health and wellness,” said Ms. Mandel. Some of the produce grown there is donated to area organizations; in October, for example, student volunteers from the Princeton Friends School harvested spring mix lettuce that was used in a Cornerstone Community Kitchen (CCK) dinner at the Princeton Methodist Church. More recently, guests at the windmill party pitched in with juice boxes and paper products that were donated to the CCK, which works in partnership with the Trenton Area Soup Kitchen.

“The Windmill Turns Slowly,” a 2005-2006 exhibition at the Society’s Bainbridge House location, featured photographs of the Homestead’s last working years, taken during the 1990s by Updike descendent Michael Johnson,

The history of the Updike farmstead dates back to 1890, when George Furman Updike and Mary Hartwick Updike settled on the site, which is located off Quaker Road.

Descending in the family line with George Furman Updike, Jr. and his wife Dora Drake Updike and their eight children, the farm was actively tilled until 1969, when grandsons Stanley and Sewell, sold the cropland to the Institute for Advanced Study with the understanding that the acreage would remain farmland. The Updike family retained six acres which included the farmhouse, barn, chicken coop, woodshed, corn crib, and orchard.

Through the 1990s, Stanley Updike and his sister, Sarah, maintained their farm routines. Stanley gathered eggs from the chicken coop, sprayed the peach trees, and split firewood. Sarah canned fruit, tended to the garden, and prepared their daily meals. The Historical Society of Princeton purchased the farm’s six acres from the family upon the deaths of Stanley and Sarah.

Updike Farmstead, which is currently open to the public one Saturday each month, will be open on December 15, from 12 to 4 p.m., when children will be invited to create a holiday card while parents browse the farmhouse galleries.

Quaker Road is open to Farmstead visitors from the Mercer Street side during open hours.

Other upcoming events at Bainbridge House include a December 28 commemoration of Woodrow Wilson’s birthday, 100 years after his election as president of the United States; a December 29 celebration of the USS Constitution (“Old Ironsides) and her captain, William Bainbridge; and a “Battle of Princeton Walk” on January 5.

Bainbridge House is located at 158 Nassau Street. Hours are Wednesday through Sunday, from noon to 4 p.m. To register for a program, call (609) 921-6748 ext. 102, or email Visitors to Bainbridge House through December 14 are asked to bring a new, unwrapped toy that will help a child celebrate the season.

For more information, visit, or call (609) 921-6748 x102.

Santa’s listening to the sweet nothings offered by Caroline Kinney, whose charms could melt a thousand snowmen. Children under 12 were invited to whisper holiday wishes in Santa’s ear at Morven Museum’s Cookies and Milk with Santa gathering. (Photo by Emily Reeves)

December 5, 2012

SUCCESS STORY: After participating in the Greater Donnelly Neighborhood Initiative, this smiling alumnus of the program was admitted to a selective high school military academy where he is class president. Shown with him are (from left) last years Service Auction Co-Chair Katie DeSalvo and GDI Board of Trustees members Joe Woodby and Princeton student Phil Hannam.

Most weekdays during the school year, a group of graduate students from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School spend late afternoons in Trenton with teenagers at a local church. As part of the Greater Donnelly Neighborhood Initiative, they help with homework, assist with recreational activities, and foster relationships with young urban residents whose lives are a far cry from those of their mentors on the leafy Princeton campus.

On Thursday, December 13 from 4:30 to 7 p.m., members of the Princeton community will have a chance to aid the program by attending an auction in its support. Held at the Wilson School’s Robertson Hall, the fundraiser is open to the public, with refreshments, entertainment, a silent auction, and a live auction.

“This is our biggest annual event, and the culmination of a year’s worth of service,” said Logan Clark, a second-year graduate student and the co-chair of the Graduate Student Government’s Community Service Committee at the Wilson School. “For years, the program relied on federal funding, but that has been phased out. So they really depend, in large part, on proceeds that come out of this auction for their annual operating budget.”

Last year, the auction raised $15,700. The non-profit Greater Donnelly Neighborhood Initiative grew out of a U.S. Department of Justice “weed and seed” anti-crime program begun in 2007. Students from the Wilson School have volunteered with the program since its inception.

Mr. Clark said he and his colleagues work on combating gang influences, helping students with reading and writing skills, and building relationships. “There is a core group of about 30 to 40 students who come in every day after school, and we’re their main support system,” he said. “We provide a safe haven for them, where they might otherwise be drawn into negative things.”

The Wilson School students are currently canvassing shopkeepers in Princeton and at local malls for donations of auction items. The students also offer their own services as auction items, ranging from cooking lessons and dance instruction to architectural tours of the campus. Last year, several stores donated goods, and students provided such prizes as catering, chauffeuring, and private language lessons.

Students and alumni from the Donnelly program will be on hand at the event. “They’ll be there to speak and perform,” said Mr. Clark, “and mostly to express their thanks.”

Robertson Hall is on the Princeton University campus at the corner of Washington Road and Prospect Street. Call Logan Clark at (609) 954-8614 for information.

Princeton public school children will be attending three additional days of school in 2013 — February 15, April 1, and June 20 — to make up for days lost during Hurricane Sandy.

In the event of more cancelled school days, the Board of Education has identified May 24, June 21, and June 24 as potential make up days.

In addition to approval of these dates, last week’s meeting of the Board of Education included a discussion of annual election dates. Offered the choice once before, the school board opted, by a five to four vote, to keep elections for new and returning school board members and budget approval in April. The Board’s discussion last week anticipated voting once again on the April-or-November question at its next meeting, on December 18. As they did before, members of the Board spoke to both sides of the issue.

Superintendent Judy Wilson offered some background on the question, noting that, for many decades, every public school district in New Jersey was required to hold April elections. Princeton was joined by about 70 other districts that kept April elections in 2012; she suggested that this year, “we may be the only district staying in April.”

By opting to move to the November general election Princeton would save about $40,000. The downside of that, according to some, is loss of the municipality’s ability to vote on the year’s proposed budget, and an overshadowing of educational concerns by other elections occurring at the same time. Ms. Wilson noted that only between nine and eleven percent of Princeton’s potential voters usually participate in the April election, and that the coming election will be the first time that Princeton voters will be voting as one entity, rather than electing Borough and Township representatives.

“I still believe that the public has a right to vote on any part of their tax bill, since we are up to 50 percent of the local property tax,” said Board President Tim Quinn, defending April elections. “It’s an exercise in democracy.”

Mr. Quinn pointed out that a particularly well-qualified candidate for the Montgomery school board was defeated in November because the excitement of the presidential election overshadowed an opportunity for the community to get to know her. Giving Perth Amboy as an example, Mr. Quinn also expressed concern about “the presence of outside groups” and “outside money” that have “tried to undo the action of duly elected board members.”

Noting that she is the last school board member to have been elected by the Borough, nine-year board veteran Rebecca Cox said that she would like to see the New Jersey Education Association (NJEA) “look at each and every ballot and determine whether quality vs. quantity informs who is elected.” She suggested that being in a minority of districts still holding elections in April may make it difficult for Princeton to get the NJEA’s attention. Typically, she reported, the NJEA responds to arguments that November elections become “too political” by saying that most school boards are already “heavily political,” and being run by local machines. She said that NJEA regards the practice of staying in April as “quaint.”

Citing the cost savings and the fact that more voters turn out for the general election, Board member Dan Haughton spoke in favor of moving the election to November, “if we really want to encourage democracy,” while Afsheen Shamsi, spoke in favor of April elections, and focusing “solely on education issues.”

Mr. Haughton said that since recent budgets have been limited by a two-percent cap, the loss of the community’s ability to vote on the budget “won’t make a lot of difference; it’s pretty much a given what the budget is going to be.” Ms. Wilson and Ms. Cox countered by saying that maintaining the public budget vote (i.e., keeping the April election) is “risky,” because when a budget is voted down, it goes to the governing body. Dorothy Bedford seemed to support keeping an April election by suggesting that the Board wouldn’t “want the public to have the impression” that the Board is “cavalier” and budgets all the way up to the two percent cap. “We’re usually somewhat below,” she observed.

Ms. Cox worried, however,
that time spent promoting each year’s budget takes school officials away from time spent educating students.

Community input on the election question is encouraged, and comments can be made on school district’s website,

In other business at the Board meeting, Student Achievement Committee Chair Andrea Spall reported on Princeton High School Principal Gary Snyder’s request that asterisks indicating levels of achievement be removed from students’ names on graduation programs.

Members of the Princeton High boys’ soccer team celebrate after tying Ramapo 1-1 in the Group III state championship game last Saturday at The College of New Jersey to earn a share of the title. PHS ended the season with an 18-3-1 record as it earned its first state crown since 2009. For more details on the game, see the front page story as well as pages 40 and 41. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

November 28, 2012

EXCELLENCE IN EDUCATION: Saint Paul Catholic School was among the winners of this year’s National Blue Ribbon award. At a recent celebration, Principal Ryen Killeen (left) accepted the award from New Jersey Department of Education representative Emily MacKinnon. (Photo by Frank DiGiovanni.)

Saint Paul Catholic School (SPS) of Princeton boasts several distinctions. It is the oldest Catholic school in Mercer County, and the oldest private elementary school in Princeton. Founded in 1880 by the Sisters of Mercy of Watchung, it is Princeton’s first and only coed Catholic school.

The 350-student, K-9 grade school recently distinguished itself in another way, by winning a 2012 “Blue Ribbon of Excellence” award from the Department of Education.

The Blue Ribbon Schools of Excellence Program was created in 1982 to “identify and recognize outstanding public and private schools across the United States of America.” The award is the highest prize the Department of Education can confer. To qualify, private schools like St. Paul’s, must rank in the top ten percent of the nation; public schools must rank in the top ten percent in the state. In Princeton, the only other school to have won the award was the Princeton Charter School, in 2004. Nationwide, this year’s winners include 216 public schools, and 50 private schools. All of the schools were recognized by Secretary of Education Arne Duncan at a recent ceremony in Washington, D.C.

“Our nation has no greater responsibility than helping all children realize their full potential,” said Mr. Duncan at the ceremony. “Schools honored with the National Blue Ribbon Schools award are committed to accelerating student achievement and preparing students for success in college and careers. Their work reflects the conviction that every child has promise and that education is the surest pathway to a strong, secure future.”

At a joyful ceremony of its own last week, the Saint Paul’s community, which welcomes students of all faiths, gathered to celebrate its success. A bagpiper played as everyone filed into Saint Paul’s Church.

In his opening remarks, Reverend Monsignor Joseph N. Rosie noted that all the learning that goes on at SPS — not just the religious training — are means of “learning about God’s wonder.” A video presentation showed SPS students at work, at play, and at prayer. Most recently, students participated in a collection that sent five vans filled with supplies to aid Hurricane Sandy victims.

In addition to the Blue Ribbon award, SPS has had first- and second-place wins for the last 12 years in an area-wide “scholarly olympics.”

“From whom much is given, much is expected,” observed Superintendent of Catholic Schools JoAnn Tier, invoking Matthew 20: 1-16. Mr. Duncan’s observation that “exemplary schools don’t just happen; they happen by design,” was also cited that morning.

DANCING WITH A PRO: Tristan MacManus, shown here with fellow “Dancing With the Stars” cast member Chelsie Hightower, chose the Princeton Dance and Theatre Studio in Forrestal Village as the location for an upcoming fundraiser appearance for his favorite charity, Grassroot Soccer.

Local fans of the hit TV show Dancing With the Stars will soon have a chance to spend an evening with one of the show’s professional dancers. Tristan MacManus, the handsome Irishman who has waltzed with such “stars” as Gladys

Knight, Nancy Grace, and Pamela Anderson, will appear on January 26 at Princeton Dance and Theatre Studio (PDT) in Forrestal Village.

The one-night-only event, which is limited to 90 participants, is a fundraiser for Mr. MacManus’s charity Grassroot Soccer, which uses a soccer-based curriculum to educate children in Africa about AIDS. The choice of PDT as a venue came about by chance. The studio, which emphasizes ballet but also offers Broadway dance, hip hop, and other forms, has no connection to Mr. MacManus or Dancing With the Stars, a show that pairs professional dancers with celebrities in a competition; the current season ended last night.

But the mother of two former PDT students happened to be involved with DublinDown330, an organization that works with Grassroot Soccer to raise money and awareness. Donor Jeanne Richman was approached by the charity to help find a location for Mr. MacManus’s fundraiser, and she immediately thought of PDT.

“They were looking for a place on the east coast where Tristan could have a night to meet some of the people who have donated to the charity,” she said. “They asked me about Princeton, and I told them about PDT. It was a logical place. Tristan was interested when he looked at the faculty, because of its diversity. It’s not just ballet, it’s also about Broadway dance, and he loves anything that has to do with Broadway.”

Growing up in Ireland, Mr. MacManus, now 30, divided his energies between his two passions: soccer and dancing. “At one point he gave up dance for soccer,” said Ms. Richman, who has gotten to know the dancer through interviews she has done with him for his website. “He went back to dance, but he loves soccer and he has devoted a lot of time to raising money for the charity, which supports children in Africa and AIDS-prevention by using soccer in the curriculum.”

The initial goal was to raise $10,000 for a tournament
to be played in Los Angeles, where Mr. MacManus spends time while working on Dancing With the Stars. Some $19,000 has been raised so far, and the bar has been reset at $100,000, according to the website

Among the biggest fundraisers so far was a raffle for a dance lesson with Mr. MacManus. Some 800 people entered. The Princeton event is a way for the dancer to meet some of his supporters — the 799 who didn’t win the raffle, and then some. “He wanted to find a way to thank his fans,” said Ms. Richman, “not just for the charity project, but also for everything through his career, including Dancing With the Stars. He wants people to feel included.”

PDT’s size limits the number of participants in the event, but that’s part of the plan. “We wanted small,” Ms. Richman said. “It’s a meet and greet, with a lot of personal interaction. He won’t perform, but we’re trying to talk him into maybe doing a dance lesson earlier in the day.”

Ms. Richman is expecting a full house. Already, one “huge fan” of Mr. MacManus is flying in from
Finland for the event. Others, from Ohio, North Carolina, and other locations, have expressed an interest. “He’s very popular and has huge support on social media, but he wants everyone, including people who don’t use websites or Twitter, to be included,” she said.

“I am very excited about my January 26 Dublin-Down330 fundraiser that is being hosted by the very kind and gracious people at Princeton Dance and Theater,” Mr. MacManus said in a printed statement. “For nearly a year, I have worked diligently to raise awareness and support for Grassroot Soccer, a charity whose vision is ‘A world mobilized through soccer to create an AIDS-free generation.’ …. I am as passionate about football [soccer] as I am about dance …. This event is a chance for me to meet many of my very generous fans while continuing the next phase of our fund-raising. I am looking forward to being in Princeton and meeting many of you.“

Tickets are available at For more information, visit

Edher Osrio of Princeton, an emergency room worker at the University Medical Center of Princeton at Plainsboro, has been accused of forcing a female patient to improperly touch him and, in a separate incident, of sexually assaulting another female patient. The alleged contact happened on November 23 with a 60-year-old female patient, while the alleged assault occurred with a 36-year-old female patient in June 2012.

The following statements from Princeton HealthCare System (PHCS) are in response to questions about the ongoing investigation involving PHCS employee, Edher Osorio, and about Mr. Osorio’s return to work after he was the subject of a criminal investigation that was conducted earlier this year. We are providing these statements in response to those inquiries. In June of 2012, a patient complained that a PHCS employee had inappropriate sexual contact with her. The Plainsboro police and the Middlesex County Sex Crimes Unit conducted a thorough investigation and did not find a reason to charge the employee with a crime. The employee was an employee in good standing at that time. As is our practice, we had conducted a thorough pre-employment reference check and criminal background check, and he had passed both. At the time of the investigation, the employee had no record of criminal conduct or of patient complaints and had not been charged with a crime. He was allowed to return to work when the investigation was completed. PHCS is fully cooperating with the police investigation, and are unable to comment on the case.

Mr. Osorio is being held at the Middlesex County Adult Correction Center in North Brunswick in lieu of $200,000 bail.

Anyone with information that may be relevant is asked to call Investigator Terpanick of the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office at (732) 745-3600, or Detective McElrath of the Plainsboro Police Department at (609) 799-2333.

Palmer Square was at its most festive Friday for the holiday tree lighting, an event made noteworthy by the presence of a singing Santa, who belted out songs of the season with The Alice Project. (Photo by Emily Reeves)

November 21, 2012

It’s mating season for white-tailed deer, and Princeton Township’s deer management program is underway for the twelfth consecutive year. Mark Johnson, the Township’s Animal Control Officer, said that United Bowhunters of New Jersey are culling the deer population in six of the 12 Township parks. Once they complete their hunting, White Buffalo Sharpshooters come in to “net and bolt,” or net the deer and pick them up.

All of the carcasses are donated to Norwescap, the community action partnership that fights poverty and hunger, Mr. Johnson added. The hunting began around November 5, while no date has been set so far for the next part of the process.

The deer population has been steadily increasing, creating problems and dangerous situations on local roadways. “This is the busiest roadkill time of year, and the roadkill number has been steadily rising,” Mr. Johnson said. “For the past three or four years, we’ve had between 60 to 80 a year. But this year, we’re already at 90, which means it will probably go over 100. We’d like to keep it in the double digits.”

While there used to be certain “hot spots” where deer could be counted on to appear, the situation has changed. “I really can’t say that anymore,” Mr. Johnson said. “They’re scattered all over.”

CLEARING THE TRAILS: The fury of Superstorm Sandy caused considerable devastation at Princeton’s natural preserves. Volunteers, led by Princeton Friends of Open Space Trailblazers, have been working since to restore the trails and clear the areas of brush and debris. Shown here are Dana Oley and Brian Rosener of Blue Ridge Mountain Sports, who are among those who have helped with the effort. (Photo by Eric Tazelaar)

Since the destruction of Superstorm Sandy, anyone attempting to walk the paths of Princeton’s preserved woods and natural areas hasn’t gotten very far before encountering a fallen tree trunk. The record-breaking storm left its mark on Witherspoon Woods, the adjacent Mountain Lakes Preserve, and Community Park North, making paths normally strolled by nature-lovers and dog-walkers impassable.

But almost daily since the storm passed, volunteers have been working in the woods with chain saws and brush-clearing equipment to help bring the area back to normal. The Friends of Princeton Open Space Trailblazers, joined by other helpers, are opening up or rerouting paths affected by the fallen trees.

“It’s a pretty remarkable group of people,” said Fred Spar, a board member of Friends of Princeton Open Space. “They have been out there, keeping the trails clear, for a number of years on a regular basis. But since the storm, several people have been there almost daily and a fairly large crew comes out on weekends, six or eight people at a time. Some are from Blue Ridge Mountain Sports, and others who just heard about it show up to help. It’s been a huge help.”

Those who don’t frequent the woods may not realize the extent of the damage. “It’s pretty bad,” Mr. Spar said. “There are areas where it was just like dominoes — one tree fell, and the next one, and then the next one followed, and so on. Just beyond Mountain Lakes House, there’s an area where there were mostly conifers, and it’s just devastated. It’s all gone. There are many places where you start out following a trail, and then you have to stop.”

The cleanup continues, and more volunteers are needed. “The storm caused the loss of access to some beautiful natural areas that a lot of people in the community have come to enjoy,” Mr. Spar said. “It’s sad to see all these great trees fallen and paths obstructed. We still need help, and we welcome anyone who wants to volunteer.”

To join the effort, contact

The focus was on buildings and grounds at last week’s Board of Education meeting.

Superintendent Judy Wilson and other members of the Board reiterated their thanks to the community for passing a September referendum that will support $10.9 million in infrastructure repairs and upgrades to district schools. At the same meeting, which had originally been scheduled for October 30, Ms. Wilson reported that school buildings and playing fields came out of Hurricane Sandy relatively unscathed. The meeting concluded with the presentation by Kip Cherry of a proposed resolution focusing on the disposition of the old section of Valley Road School building.

In her comments about the recent storm, Ms. Wilson described Borough Administrator Robert Bruschi as “tireless, steady, and accurate” in fulfilling his role as “key communicator” between the schools and the public.

The Princeton Public Library was also acknowledged for providing a haven in the days during and after the storm. “Hundreds of our children were sitting on the library floor reading and chatting,” Ms. Wilson reported. “What a sight it was.”

Custodians and maintenance staff, under the leadership of Director of Plant/Operations Gary Weisman, were recognized for putting in as many as 50 hours at a stretch at school buildings over the course of ten to twelve days. “They made a huge difference in our ability to open again,” Ms. Wilson noted.

The only damage sustained by any of the schools was to the roof of the gym at Princeton High School, where repairs are already underway.

Repairing the Valley Road School Building was the subject of Ms. Cherry’s presentation. “I’m not expecting you to vote on it tonight,” she said as she distributed copies of the proposal prepared by by Valley Road Community Center, Inc. “Consider it a draft for your future support.”

Ms. Cherry noted that portions of the building are “in dire need of repair” and “will become an eyesore or safety hazard if not addressed.” The proposal to create a “Valley Road Community Center” is not a new one, but Ms. Cherry reiterated some of its specifics, including the creation of affordable spaces for non-profit theater and arts organizations which will work together in a synergistic environment. Ms. Cherry was careful to note that the purposes of the Center would be consistent with the Princeton Public School’s mission, and that environmental issues would be met in creating it.

The suggestion, this time, that the Board “partner” with the Valley Road Community Center, Inc., may have been a new one. “You haven’t been with us,” Ms. Cherry commented, noting that a partnership would enhance fund-raising opportunities and garner support for the project from the Planning Board and new municipal Council.

Thanking Ms. Cherry for a “thoughtful proposal,” Ms. Wilson reminded everyone about the Board’s “time frame” for considering what to do with the Valley Road building. Since they were committed “to go to work on this issue after the first of this year,” she said, she did not expect “any public discussion on this in next six weeks.”

Ms. Cherry expressed the hope that things would move a little faster, since water is currently leaking into the building. “The building can’t be reused if the water situation is not stabilized,” she noted.

Ms. Wilson responded by saying that Township officials are aware of the water situation.

In non-building related discussions, the Board approved a revised policy that addresses all tobacco use by students. Curriculum changes were made to “align with state requirements,” reported Student Achievement Committee Chair Andrea Spalla, and, at the teachers’ request, A Midsummer Night’s Dream will be taught to sixth graders this year.

“Our commitment is to make sure no one is hungry, and no one is homeless in Mercer County,” observed HomeFront Founder and Executive Director Connie Mercer. “The storm just made it harder.”

While many families had to to throw away the contents of a single freezer after days-long power outages, HomeFront lost the content of several industrial-sized freezers in their headquarters at 1880 Princeton Avenue in Lawrenceville.

And, although many people missed one or more days of work because of the storm, most paychecks will remain the same. At HomeFront, where many of the women are hourly employees, the loss of time means the loss of income. “These are the working poor,” said Ms. Mercer. “They live from paycheck to paycheck.” Ms. Mercer reported that she has a list of “a lot of big employers” like the State government, that are not paying hourly employees for time missed because of the storm.

HomeFront has experienced a 20 percent increase in homeless families needing help, and a 40 percent increase in requests for food as a result of the storm. In the meantime, the 20-year old organization’s programs to intervene and prevent homelessness; to offer children’s programing — including academic help; and its job readiness training, keep going. The organization’s commitment to literacy — the waiting room is stocked with books for clients to take home — is also going strong.

At the Mercer Street facility, HomeFront accepts donations of food, personal hygiene items, appliances, furniture, household goods, books, and more, to support its clients as they transition from need to self-sufficiency. On Monday afternoon, workers were unloading a truck full of Thanksgiving baskets donated by Bloomberg. At holiday time and throughout the year, HomeFront food packages focus on proteins, fresh produce, cereal, and other healthy foods. Donated goods are sorted by volunteers, a mainstay of the organization’s existence. More than one person, however, mentioned the facility’s overriding need for diapers.

Seasoned staff members like Brenda Whitaker, who runs Huchet House, HomeFront’s residence for homeless women pregnant with their first child, are always one step ahead of her clients. The contract that young women sign upon entering Huchet House is an exacting one that ensures they will keep doctor appointments, make good nutritional choices, and refrain from using drugs and alcohol during their pregnancies. Once their babies are born, baby sitters are in place so the young women can go back to work or to a new job obtained because of HomeFront preparation. “You must be self-sufficient before you get pregnant again,” Ms. Whitaker tells these young women in any number of “heart-to-heart” discussions.

One initiative that brought HomeFront up a little short is their “Kinship” program, which assists grandparents to assume responsibility for their grandchildren when the need arises. These returning caretakers lose senior housing apartments in the process, and require more medical care than participants in other HomeFront programs.

HomeFront’s Women’s Initiative will be hosting its third annual “Share, Shop, Give” event on Thursday, November 29, from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. at Greenacres Country Club in Lawrenceville. The event “will be an opportunity for women to network, holiday shop, and enjoy an evening out,” said Initiative member Denise Taylor. “Approximately 15 to 20 vendors representing great ideas for holiday gifts will be set up and open for business.”

“Our goal is to support HomeFront and the wonderful work they do in our community,” said event organizer Faith DeJean. “We also want to encourage anyone who may not know about HomeFront to come and learn more. It is a great organization which has a proven track record of providing a comprehensive network of services for the poor and homeless in Mercer County.”

To learn more about “Share, Shop, Give,” contact Denise Taylor at, or Ms. Dejean at

For more information about HomeFront, visit, or call (609) 989-9417.

Princeton University students enjoy the bonfire that lit up Cannon Green last Saturday evening to honor the Princeton football team’s wins over Harvard and Yale this fall. Thousands of students, alums, and community members were on hand to observe the Princeton tradition emblematic of a “Big Three” football title. It was the first bonfire since 2006. For details on the football team’s finale against Dartmouth, see page 30. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

November 14, 2012

BUSINESS AS USUAL: When Hurricane Sandy caused a power outage on Lambert Drive, American Boychoir School (ABS) Math Teacher Shawn Volz simply relocated with her class to a temporary space in Trinity Church. Along with the Church’s hospitality, ABS boarders were welcomed to stay in a number of area homes. (Photo by Lisa Eckstrom)

Did you hear the one about the American Boychoir School? Among the local stories about Sandy and the nor’easter that have emerged in recent days, it’s one of the nicest.

Although scheduled to move to the Princeton Center for Arts and Education (formerly St. Joseph’s Seminary) on Mapleton Road where it will join the Princeton French Academy and Wilberforce School, American Boychoir School (ABS) has remained at its old location on Lambert Drive while updates are being made to its future home. Unfortunately, Lambert Drive was among those Princeton neighborhoods that lost power for an extended period as a result of Sandy; no small hardship for a school where boarders outnumber day students, and a holiday season’s worth of concerts is quickly approaching.

“There were 12 students here when the storm hit,” recalled Assistant Head of School K.P. Weseloh. The subsequent return of a group of choristers who had been out touring almost tripled that number.

Thanks to Princeton’s Trinity Church, which offered classrooms, and to the good will of nearby students’ parents, grandparents, and other friends of the ABS community, all 32 boys were almost seamlessly housed, fed, and schooled — and well-rehearsed. With beautiful spaces at Trinity and Princeton Theological Seminary in which to practice, you could say that the boys didn’t miss a beat.

“If you like chaos, it’s fun,” observed Ms. Weseloh, who was among those providing care and shelter for boys last week. “They’re having a ball meeting new people, living in new spaces, and having new experiences.” The electricity on Lambert Drive returned this weekend, but until then, the boys were welcome to remain in their temporary homes as long as needed.

“If you ask someone to help, they’re more than willing to do it,” Ms. Weseloh reported. For host families, there was the “fun of hearing about the lives of boys who have perfect pitch and travel around the world to perform.”

The boys follow an 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. schedule, so breakfast and dinner were with their host families, while lunch was at the Church. Princeton Windrows, a retirement community located near the school’s future home in Plainsboro, also stepped up to the plate by offering to house the boys. With all the other volunteers coming forward, though, it wasn’t necessary.

Last Thursday, then, was what had become a routine day for ABS students in their new quarters. After a day of academics, members of the choir trooped into the chapel to learn new songs under the tutelage of Fernando Malvar-Ruiz, ABS’s Litton-Liddal music director. Addressing them as “gentlemen,” Mr. Malvar-Ruiz encouraged the boys to sit forward, corrected their pronunciation of Latin words, beckoned them to sing out, and to repeat certain passages. Already beautiful sounds (the boys know how to sight read) became even more beautiful.

The American Boychoir’s upcoming schedule includes a performance of music from Wozzeck, accompanied by the Philharmonia Orchestra of London at Avery Fisher Hall, in Lincoln Center on Monday, November 19, at 8 p.m. On Thursday, November 29, at 6:30 p.m. they will perform The Christmas Rose with Jane Seymour and the Tim Janis ensemble in Carnegie Hall.

Closer to home, on December 7 at 7:30 p.m. the choir will appear in a concert of “Winter Wonders” at Grounds for Sculpture in Hamilton; in a program called “Voices of Angels” at the Princeton University Chapel on December 15 at 7:30 p.m.; and in the December 16 “Winter Wonderland Concert” at 4 p.m. in Richardson Auditorium on the Princeton University campus.

In the coming year, area residents will be welcome to hear free, open choir rehearsals once a month on Friday afternoons; check for updates.

The only non-sectarian boys’ choir school in the nation, American Boychoir School was founded in Columbus, Ohio, in 1937, and has been located in Princeton since 1950. Regarded by many as the United States’s premier concert boys’ choir, it includes boys in grades four through eight, with students from across the country and around the world.

The Lewis Center for the Arts’ Performance Central series will present a talk by archeologist Joan Breton Connelly entitled “Recovering the Ephemeral: Archaeologies of Performance in the Ancient Mediterranean World,” on Tuesday, November 20, at 5 p.m. The event, which is free and open to the public, will be held in Frist Campus Center’s Film and Performance Theater on the Princeton University campus.

A member of Princeton’s Class of 1976 and the recipient of a MacArthur Foundation fellowship for her work on Athenian myth, cult, and image, topics explored in her forthcoming book, Parthenon Revisited, Ms. Connelly is a professor of classics and art history at New York University and director of NYU’s Yeronisos Islands Excavations program, which hosts projects dedicated to both archaeological research and ecological preservation. As a field archeologist she has excavated in Greece, Kuwait, and Cyprus.

Ms. Connelly’s 2007 book, Portrait of a Priestess: Women and Ritual in Ancient Greece (Princeton University Press), was hailed as “eye-opening” and “engrossing” by The New York Times, which named the publication a “Notable Book of the Year.” The book was also honored with the Archaeological Institute of America’s James R. Wiseman Prize, and a Professional and Scholarly Press Award for Best Book in Classics and Ancient History.

This event is being presented by the Lewis Center’s Performance Central series which presents high profile lectures, readings and performances from artists and thinkers across various art forms. Having presented Grammy Award-winning vocalist Moya Brennan of the Irish band Clannad earlier this month, the series will bring the musical comedy improvisational work of the group Baby Wants Candy to the Berlind Theater at McCarter Theater Center in March.

To learn more about other upcoming events in the Performance Central series and the over 100 public events offered each year at the Lewis Center for the Arts visit



Determining that an ordinance to designate Princeton Borough’s Morven Tract neighborhood a historic district is in compliance with Princeton’s master plan, the Regional Planning Board Monday made passage of the controversial measure look increasingly likely. The ordinance now returns to Borough Council to be considered for a final public hearing and vote.

The proposal has been a source of contention among residents of the stately western section neighborhood for more than six years. Those in favor of the designation say it will protect the neighborhood’s architectural and historical significance. Those opposed contend it will place unnecessary restrictions on making certain alterations and repairs. A group of 51 properties, bounded by Bayard Lane, Hodge Road and Library Place, would be affected by the designation.

Some members of the Planning Board urged that acting on the proposal be delayed until after consolidation goes into effect, which is what the Historical Preservation Review Committee (HPRC) recommended earlier this year. The Borough and Township have different ordinances, and a new, merged entity will be created after January 1. “It’s only fair to property owners to know how restrictive it will be,” said Marvin Reed. “We don’t know what the details will be.”

Board member Gail Ullman said the Board should think about the measure as it benefits the whole town and the master plan, not just the neighborhood. “What we’re considering is a designation that will long outlast any of the residents,” she said. “How will such a designation play out over the years in the whole town? Will it keep that neighborhood beautiful? Will it inform future residents?”

Mr. Reed and Board member Julie Nachamkin were the only ones to vote against the ordinance’s consistency with the master plan. Ms. Nachamkin proposed advising Borough Council to delay acting on the measure until after January 1, but that suggestion was rejected by a 5-4 vote.

As has been the case at most every meeting on the subject, several residents of the neighborhood expressed their views on the designation. There will be more opportunity for public input when the matter comes before Borough Council, at a date that has yet to be announced.

The Board also recommended that the Borough survey neighborhood residents to determine the amount of support for the designation, since both sides of the issue continue to challenge each other’s figures on the question.

Princetonians gathered in thankfully mild weather Monday at the All Wars Monument for the Spirit of Princeton’s Veterans Day observance. The non-partisan community committee bears a name that has special resonance given the community spirit inspired by the devastation of Superstorm Sandy, which lends the trees in the background a special survivor’s presence of their own. (Photo by Emily Reeves)

November 7, 2012

HOME AWAY FROM HOME: The Princeton Public Library more than lived up to its role as the “Community’s Living Room” for power-starved residents during Sandy’s aftermath. (Photo by Emily Reeves)

As if we didn’t know it already, Princeton Public Library proved, once again, that it is truly this community’s “living room” by serving as a haven for many during Hurricane Sandy.

“We had more than 29,360 customers last week, including the day before the storm, October 28,” reported Communications Director Tim Quinn. “That averages to about 4,200 per day.”

The library conceded to the storm by closing on Monday, October 29, but reopened around 11 a.m. on Tuesday, October 30, remaining open until 9 p.m. Some 4,788 visitors came to the library in a nine-hour period that day.

Instead of waiting until the usual 9 a.m. opening on Thursday, November 1, the library provided a warming station by opening doors to the front of the library, lobby, and community room at 7 a.m. That day saw the largest attendance of the period, with 8,028 visitors in the 14 hours between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m. On Friday, November 2, 6,539 people came to the library during roughly the same period.

Mr. Quinn reported that the three-day total number of visitors to the library during the peak of the power outage was 19,355. “By comparison, our average daily door count is 2,500,” he added. Circulation of library materials during this time doubled, and “all computers were in use pretty much every hour we were open,” said Mr. Quinn. “Our Wi-Fi was operating at the maximum capacity throughout,” and intense Wi-FI use prompted frequent announcements asking visitors to turn off the Wi-Fi on 3G and 4G devices, so others could get on the internet. Other announcements kept people up-to-date on school closings, and encouraged them to attend screenings of family-friendly movies like Penguins of Madagascar in the Community Room.

When available seats ran out, library visitors took to sitting side-by-side on the floor. In addition to the usual library activities, there were card games, and impromptu meetings. At least one couple came to see what the latest issue of Consumer Reports had to say about a badly-needed appliance.

Another bright spot for area residents during the storm was McCaffrey’s Market at the Princeton Shopping Center, where a generator kept food fresh and operations humming. People stood patiently in a long line for coffee, often bringing it to the upstairs seating area where they could drink it, eat Halloween-themed pastries, and recharge electrical appliances.

Internet service at McCaffrey’s was spotty, but the lights, warmth, good smells, and happiness at seeing familiar faces more than made up for it. It didn’t feel at all surprising, at one point, to hear the theme from Cheers emanating from McCaffrey’s large screen TV.

Another bright spot was Princeton United Methodist Church (PUMC), where Pastor Jana Purkis-Brash and Music Director Hyosang Park plugged in the coffee pot and posted a sign on the lawn reading, “Come in! Get warm! Charge up and use our Wi-Fi!” On Wednesday two dozen passersby sought brief refuge from the cold, plus nearly 100 people who spent the day, charging their phones and logging onto PUMC’s Wi-Fi. On Wednesdays, PUMC usually serves free meals to all, in partnership with the Trenton Area Soup Kitchen, and this last week was no exception. At 4 p.m. the Cornerstone Community Kitchen team converted the space into a dining room, where 73 people enjoyed salad, roast pork and mashed potatoes.

MIT Professor Emeritus of Linguistics Noam Chomsky, a speaker, writer, and advocate for peace and justice for over 50 years, will be the featured speaker at “New Paths to Peace,” the 33rd Annual Conference and Interfaith Service for Peace sponsored by the Coalition for Peace Action (CFPA) on Sunday, November 11, from 1:30 to 5 p.m. at Nassau Presbyterian Church, 61 Nassau Street (across from Palmer Square).

Other confirmed speakers include University of Michigan History Professor Juan Cole, an expert on relations between the West and the Muslim World who has appeared numerous times on the PBS News Hour and other media; and Amy Goodman, the host and executive producer of Democracy Now!, a national, daily, independent, award-winning news program airing on over 1,100 public television and radio stations worldwide.

Fr. Pat Connor, SVD, a priest with the Divine Word Missionaries and chaplain for over 25 years at Stuart Country Day School of the Sacred Heart, is scheduled to preach at the Interfaith Service at 11 a.m. at Princeton University Chapel. Faith leaders from a wide range of major world religions will co-lead the liturgy. The service is free and open to the public; a free will offering to support CFPA’s ongoing work will be received.

Doors for the afternoon program will open for seating and on-site registration at 1 p.m. The event will conclude with a Patron Reception honoring Mr. Chomsky from 5:00 to 6:00 p.m. in the Assembly Room at the rear of Nassau Presbyterian Church.

Registration fees for patrons (including preferred seating, listing in program and post-conference Reception) is $125 per CFPA member; $150 per non-member. Regular seats are available at $30 per member; $50 per non-member. Students are free, but must pre-register by sending their name, email, phone, and educational institution to

Registration is available by credit card through CFPA’s secure web site,; or by telephoning (609) 924-5022.

“We are thrilled to have such an outstanding group of presenters for our 33rd Annual Conference and Interfaith Service for Peace,” said CFPA executive director, the Rev. Robert Moore. “Just after the elections will be an important time to hear major leaders and thinkers for peace and justice discuss next steps toward peace”.


The area-wide power outages produced a whole new venue for voters like those shown here at the polling station in Jadwin Gym. (Photo by Emily Reeves)

November 6, 2012

LIGHTS IN THE WINDOWS: Signs of life – pots of mums on balconies, lights glowing from within – are evidence that interest has picked up at the The Residences at Palmer Square, the cluster of townhomes and condominium apartments between Paul Robeson Place and Hulfish Street.

A strong rental market at The Residences at Palmer Square, the cluster of townhomes and condominium apartments between Paul Robeson Place and Hulfish Street, is an indicator that contracts for the homes in the complex that are for sale will pick up soon, say those involved in their marketing. Signs of life at the community – pots of mums on balconies, lights glowing from within – are evidence that interest has picked up at the development, which offers homes starting at $1.2 million.

Of the 52 units built as rentals, 46 have been leased, according to David Newton, vice president of Palmer Square Management. Renters have been moving in since last December. But only four of the units for purchase have been sold. “We still have a number of units left,” Mr. Newton said. “At the moment, 25 are immediately available, 11 of which are condo apartments and 14 of which are townhomes.”

Now that rentals are nearly complete, the focus is on selling the rest of the complex. “I think the rental market has been very strong in the last year,” Mr. Newton said. “We’re hopeful that with interest low and the quality of the product we’ve created that sales are going to occur in the next 12 months.”

Kimberly Rizk, an agent for Callaway Henderson Sotheby’s International Realty, which is marketing the homes, said interest in the complex has picked up in recent months. “People are over there all the time,” she said. “Two buildings are renting like crazy. Sales are slow on the townhouses and condos, no question about it. But we’re hoping that will turn around. There is a nice new amenity, a concierge service. And renters are thinking that maybe they’ll buy. So I think we’ll have some conversions.”

An open house advertised recently at the development was for a home priced at $1.855 million, offering “a minimum of three luxurious finished levels of living space, full basements and private elevators.” Mr. Newton said there are no plans to lower prices.

“There are some small incentives being offered, but prices are not being lowered,” he said. “We’ve built, we feel, to a high standard, and we have sold to certain people at one set of prices so we’re not going to change to another. We know that one way or another, they’ll sell. In three to five years, I guarantee that this will be the most popular place to live in Princeton. It’s beautiful, it’s in town, and this is the type of product people want.”

Those renting at the complex cover a wide age range. “There are empty nesters, baby boomers, not any great pattern,” Mr. Newton said. Ms. Rizk added, “We’re marketing to everybody and anybody who understands the value and the convenience of living downtown. There is no real set model of people living there. We’ve got young families, empty nesters, young professionals, from twenties to nineties. It’s anybody and everybody who wants to live in an urban environment.”

Recent additions to the retail establishments in Palmer Square are geared toward home and design. The Farmhouse Store moved last week into the space formerly occupied by The Papery at 43 Hulfish Street. The Papery has relocated to 15 Hulfish Street, a few doors down. The Farmhouse Store carries barn wood furniture, small artisan gifts, pottery, glass, and other items. Indigo by Shannon Connor Interiors opened at 45 Palmer Square West, at the former location of Spruce Connor Interiors. Owner Shannon Connor has re-launched the store to include home furnishings including custom furniture,  rugs, and gift items.

Brooks Brothers, in the space formerly occupied by Banana Republic; and Urban Outfitters, in the store that housed Talbot’s, which has moved a few doors down on Nassau Street, will open by the end of the year.

Proximity to the shops and restaurants of Palmer Square are a major part of the marketing of The Residences. “You can’t have a better location,” said Ms. Rizk. “Sales are going to turn around.”

Area congregations, schools, businesses, and clubs are invited to join in the Crisis Ministry’s annual pre-Thanksgiving “CAN-U-Copia” food and volunteer drive. The annual fall effort helps stock the shelves of the nonprofit organization’s three food pantries and raises awareness and funds to support its Hunger Prevention initiatives. Crisis Ministry supporters have already held fall food drives of the real and virtual variety: The West Windsor Farmers Market hosted a food drive October 20, that Yes We CAN! Food Drives coordinated and farmers and shoppers contributed to. Employees from an area company collected funds through a “virtual” food drive to support the Crisis Ministry’s Hunger Prevention program.

“The spirit of giving from many congregations, businesses, and community groups is really amazing,” said Carolyn Biondi, Executive Director of the Crisis Ministry. “We are grateful to serve as the connection of these resources to the individuals and family who need them.”

The 2012 CAN-U-Copia drive continues until Thanksgiving with efforts by a variety of organizations, including: First Baptist Church of Trenton, Key Club of Ewing High School, BlackRock, Princeton United Methodist Church, Nassau Presbyterian Church through its Red Truck Food Drive, Trinity Church Princeton, Christ Congregation of Princeton, Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Princeton (through its in-gathering and shelf-stocking project), Bristol-Myers Squibb, Trinity Church Rocky Hill, and Princeton Theological Seminarians who will assist with the Crisis Ministry’s scheduled distribution of hundreds of Thanksgiving turkeys with dinner fixings. Finally, on Thanksgiving morning, the Crisis Ministry will be one of three charitable organizations supported by the annual Trinity Church Princeton 5K Turkey Trot (

For more information or to participate in the 2012 CAN-U-COPIA drive contact Mark Smith ( or Sarah Unger (

The Crisis Ministry of Mercer County, Inc., is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization founded in 1980 by Nassau Presbyterian Church and Trinity Church. It partners with the community to achieve stability for neighbors in need, serving some 1,300 households each month through effective hunger prevention, homelessness prevention, and work training programs. The Hunger Prevention program serves clients through pantries at Nassau Presbyterian Church, 61 Nassau Street in Princeton; and at 117 E. Hanover St. and 400 Hamilton Ave. (the former Bethany Presbyterian Church) in Trenton. The program also offers weekly bilingual nutrition classes through a partnership with the Rutgers Extension Service and regular “Lunch and Learn” health screenings with partner Capital Health System and its Community Health Education Department. For more information on the Crisis Ministry, visit, or, or call (609) 396-5327.