February 24, 2021

EXTRA SPECIAL ENAMELWARE: “What I love is to share my knowledge and passion for enamelware with the customers. The items are so unique, yet basic and functional, and yet so beautifully done, with expert, exquisite craftsmanship.” Mary Homer, owner of French Flair Ferme in the Princeton Shopping Center, is shown with an array of special items, including a vintage hand-painted enamelware French body pitcher on the right and basin and pitcher set on the left.

By Jean Stratton

How is it that someone ends up doing exactly what he or she not only wants to do, but is certain that it is what they are meant to do?

When this happens, it really is a gift. Not everyone is fortunate enough to experience such a congenial happenstance.

Mary Homer, owner of the charming new pop-up shop, French Flair Ferme, in the Princeton Shopping Center, knows she is one of the lucky ones. Her unique gift shop, focusing on antique and vintage French enamelware, is an engaging resource not only for her customers, but for her own enjoyment.

As she describes her commitment to her work, she points out that “What comes to mind is not something tangible but rather a strong sense of connection and the knowledge that this is exactly where I am meant to be today.” more

CAT FIGHT: Princeton University women’s hockey player Maggie Connors, right, gets pushed into the boards by a Quinnipiac defender last February during a best-of-three ECAC Hockey quarterfinal series. The Tigers survived a grueling weekend against the Bobcats, cruising in game one, losing game two in overtime, and then prevailing in the decisive final game in a double overtime thriller. Buoyed by that hard-earned triumph, Princeton went on to defeat Clarkson 5-1 in the league semis and then rally for a 3-2 overtime win at top-ranked Cornell in the final to earn the program’s first-ever ECACH crown. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

A year ago, the final weekend of February turned out to be both a marathon and a springboard to history for the Princeton University women’s hockey team.

Rising to No. 6 in the national polls, Princeton was hosting Quinnipiac for a best-of-three ECAC Hockey quarterfinal series starting on February 28 at venerable Hobey Baker Rink.

The Tigers were rolling, having gone 11-1-1 in their last 13 regal season games and they had swept Quinnipiac in two previous meetings in the 2019-20 campaign.

Opening the series, Princeton continued to sizzle, jumping out to a 4-1 lead in the first period on the way to a lopsided 5-1 victory in game one.

A day later, the Tigers went up 1-0 in the first period and seemed to be on track for a sweep of the underdog Bobcats.

But things turned dicey after that as Quinnipiac responded with two unanswered goals in the second period. The Tigers knotted the game at 2-2 late in the third period on a goal by senior star Carly Bullock. On the verge of being eliminated, the Bobcats pulled out a 3-2 win with a goal at 1:45 of the first overtime to force a decisive third game.

In the finale, Princeton scored twice to build a 2-0 advantage but Tiger sophomore star Sarah Filler sensed that the series was far from over.

“We knew we were going to get their best game, they are ranked 10 in the country,” said Fillier.

“I think arguably we play in the best league in the nation so we knew it was going to be a battle and we were excited to play this one.”

Sure enough, Quinnipiac refused to die, scoring two goals to force a second straight OT game.

In the first overtime, Princeton looked to finish off Quinnipiac, outshooting the Bobcats 16-6 but to no avail as the teams remained stalemated at 2-2.

In the break after the first extra period, Princeton team managers raided the refrigerator in the rink kitchen to microwave snacks to refuel the exhausted Tigers. more

DAN THE MAN: Princeton High boys’ swimmer Daniel Baytin churns to victory in the 200 freestyle last Wednesday as PHS opened its 2021 season with a 134-36 win over Hamilton West in a coed meet. The Tigers have a virtual meet against Ewing scheduled for the week of March 1. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Even though its season has started late and there are COVID-19 protocols to follow at the pool, there is still plenty of spirit on deck for the Princeton High swimming program.

“First and foremost, I am glad and very fortunate that we even have a season,” said PHS head coach Carly Misiewicz, noting that the team is following strict protocols at practice with limits on how many swimmers can be in the pool at one time and athletes masking whenever they are not in the water.

“That is the biggest thing, they are all enjoying just being together. Yes, it is not the same but you are away from a computer screen, you are getting to be around your friends. Swimming has brought more of a sense of normalcy, it is that aspect of having that physical interaction with other people. They are really happy that they are still getting to be with their friends.”

The swimmers are certainly happy to get the chance to train and compete.

“They are still getting to race,” said Misiewicz. “A lot of club teams are strapped for time and pool availability as well too, so, the fact that we are consistently swimming every day after school and Saturday mornings has been good.”

Last Wednesday, PHS excelled in its first race of the year, topping Hamilton 134-36 in a coed meet. It marked the program’s first virtual meet which entailed each team swimming separately at their pool and then sharing times to calculate the score. more

ON TARGET: Princeton Day School girls’ hockey player Maisie Henderson controls the puck in recent action. Last Wednesday, senior forward Henderson tallied two goals to help PDS top Westfield 4-0 and improve to 5-0. In upcoming action, the Panthers are scheduled to host Trinity Hall on February 24. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Maisie Henderson grinned through her Bauer gray face mask after the Princeton Day School girls’ hockey team defeated Westfield High 4-0 last Wednesday.

With PDS having last played an official game when it defeated Chatham 7-3 on January 28, senior forward Henderson and her teammates were excited to welcome Westfield to McGraw Rink.

“It is awesome having the opportunity to be able to play, especially as a senior,” said Henderson, who scored a pair of goals in the victory as the Panthers improved to 5-0.

“It is really cool. Although there are definitely some restrictions and we can’t play a full schedule. It is definitely nice to have the opportunity to play one last year.”

It has been particularly cool for Henderson to get a chance this winter to play one last season for PDS since she had moved to New England for her junior year.

“I lived in Nantucket Massachusetts last year; last year was the first time they had a girls’ varsity hockey team,” said Henderson.

“It was a nice thing to be part of and help start that program. We didn’t really know until May that I was coming back for sure. I am really happy that I was able to come back to have a senior season here.” more

SENIOR MOMENT: Princeton Day School boys’ hockey player Trevor Kunkle celebrates last week after scoring his first career goal against St. Augustine. Senior forward Kunkle’s tally was a highlight in the February 16 contest which saw a late PDS rally fall short in a 3-2 defeat. The Panthers, now 1-1-1, host Princeton High on February 24. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

It was a highlight years in the making for Trevor Kunkle.

After working his way up through the Princeton Day School boys’ hockey program, playing junior varsity for two years and then getting called up to the varsity last winter, senior forward Kunkle finally found the back of the net last week for the Panthers as they hosted St. Augustine.

Five minutes into the February 16 contest, Kunkle battled in the crease and slotted the puck home to give PDS a 1-0 lead.

“It was the first varsity goal for me so it felt great,” said Kunkle. “It was good, it lifted the boys up. I was on JV my first two high school years and then last year I got the call up. I didn’t get much playing time. I was a big bench energy guy. This year I am getting a lot of playing time. I have never played travel hockey. I am just happy that I got it out of the way. I got that pressure off my back.”

Kunkle is happy to be on the ice in a season limited by COVID-19 concerns.

“None of the games are guaranteed, you just have to make the best of it,” said Kunkle.

“We are lucky to have a couple of games on the schedule. It was looking pretty grim, that we weren’t going to get any games this season. We had a lot of guys out with COVID. We are just happy to get a game. It was the first game in a while; it felt good, definitely.” more

APPLYING PRESSURE: Hun School boys’ basketball player Kelvin Smith, right, pressures a foe in recent action. Last Saturday, senior guard/forward Smith contributed 13 points, four rebounds, two assists, and one steal to help Hun post a 58-41 win over Princeton Day School. The Raiders, who improved to 4-1 with the victory, are scheduled to host Pennington on February 25, Peddie School on February 27, and the Patrick School on March 2. (Photo by Lexi Thomas)

By Bill Alden

Kelvin Smith’s explosiveness and physicality helped him emerge as a star wide receiver and linebacker for the Hun School football team.

This winter, Smith is applying those gridiron qualities to the basketball court, excelling for the Hun boys’ hoops team.

“Football has definitely helped my cutting in basketball,” said senior guard/forward Smith, a powerfully-built 6’4, 220-pounder.

“When I cut now, I am really good at faking out defenders and not letting them know which way I am going. It feels like running a route. Physical-wise, I feel like nobody on the court is too big to stop me. After playing football, the aggressiveness and tenacity I have is very different from everybody else. It helps me get to the basket easier. It definitely helps me in grabbing rebounds over people and getting loose balls.”

Last Saturday in a 58-41 win over the Princeton Day School, Smith displayed his aggressiveness, tallying 13 points with four rebounds, two assists, and one steal.

“I thought the team performed really well overall; I thought it was a good game,” said Smith, reflecting on the victory which was the third straight for the Raiders as they improved to 4-1.

“This past week, COVID was throwing our schedule off a little bit. We wanted to see if we could get back in that rhythm and we did. I think everybody played well.”

Despite dealing with stops and starts due to COVID and weather issues, Hun is finding a groove.

“I feel like we are playing with confidence right now,” said Smith. more

February 17, 2021

Residents and visitors enjoyed the snow on the Palmer Square green on Sunday afternoon after watching as a giant block of ice was sculpted into a 3-D figure. The ice carving event continues each Sunday in February from noon to 2 p.m. (Photo by Weronika A. Plohn)

By Donald Gilpin

Princeton Health Officer Jeff Grosser has reported downward trends in COVID case numbers, with indications that the frustratingly slow vaccination rollout will be picking up speed.

From the peak of the second wave in late November and early December to last week, Princeton has seen a 71.2 percent decrease in the number of new cases, Grosser wrote in a February 16 email. “In general, cases have been consistently dropping since December 30, 2020,” he added, but he noted that the Latino population has been disproportionately affected by the virus.

“Unfortunately, we are still seeing the burden of COVID-19 being heavier on the Hispanic/Latino population than all other ethnic/racial groups,” he said. “Fortunately, through a two-year grant from the New Jersey Department of Health (NJDOH), the Princeton Health Department hired a vulnerable population outreach coordinator (VPOC). The VPOC will focus on making inroads on Princeton’s populations most impacted from the pandemic, and work towards improving their social and health outcomes as we progress away from what was hopefully the worst of the pandemic.“

Last Thursday, February 11, the Princeton Health Department reported only seven new cases in the seven previous days, down from the highest seven-day total of 39 new cases in December. As of last week, there had been 14 new cases in the previous 14 days, well below the highest 14-day total of 66, also recorded in December. The Health Department reported a total of 40 active positive cases. Hispanic residents have accounted for 27 percent of all COVID-19 cases in Princeton, according to the Health Department.

Princeton Press and Media Communications Director Fred Williams urged caution, warning that the current drop in case numbers is occurring from the highest levels of the pandemic. “So, while this is a welcome trend, we must continue with our COVID safety mindset.”  more

ANTI-AUSTERITY DEMONSTRATION:Undergraduates, graduate students, and community members lined the walkways in front of Nassau Hall on Saturday afternoon for a rally demanding that Princeton University democratize its COVID-related health and safety decisions and share its contact tracing and COVID testing resources with community members in need in Princeton and neighboring towns.(Photo by Christine Zizzi)

By Donald Gilpin

More than 100 demonstrators — community members and University students — gathered on the walkways stretching from FitzRandolph Gate on Nassau Street to Nassau Hall on Saturday afternoon, February 13, to demand that Princeton University share its contact tracing and COVID testing resources with surrounding communities.

In an event sponsored by Unidad Latina en Accion (ULA), Princeton Anti-Austerity Coalition (PAAC), Princeton Mutual Aid (PMA), Princeton Graduate Students United (PGSU), Divest Princeton, and Princeton University Policy Student Government (PUPSG) and lasting more than an hour in the sleet and freezing rain, the speakers also called on the University to democratize all major University decision-making, to include members of the larger community, especially on issues related to the COVID pandemic and other health and safety matters.

“I call upon my fellow students to stand in solidarity with our neighbors from Princeton and the surrounding municipalities, and demand that our University extend its free testing, free tracing, and eventual free vaccination services to this local region that is deeply impacted by whatever plan this University adopts,” PAAC member Peter Scharer, a Princeton undergraduate, told the crowd.

He went on to emphasize the importance of including local residents, especially those residents who are uninsured, underinsured or undocumented, in the decision-making process.  “We must demand that residents, workers, and students alike have a democratic say in the University’s COVID plans, so as to avoid further harm caused by the inevitable austere measures of an unaccountable administration,” he said.

The bilingual event, with speeches in Spanish and English, included speakers from the sponsoring organizations with a mix of community members, University graduate students, and undergraduates. Many related stories of hardship and suffering along with their pleas for resources and help from the University in battling the pandemic. University junior and PAAC organizer Marc Schorin noted, “We don’t want your charity. We want your solidarity. It’s not about feeling bad or pity. These people are fighting for their rights, the things that they need.” more

By Anne Levin

Princeton Councilwoman Michelle Pirone Lambros announced Tuesday that she will run for the Legislative District 16 Assembly seat being vacated by Democrat Andrew Zwicker, who recently kicked off his campaign for the seat of retiring New Jersey Senator Kip Bateman.

“I believe my business skills will be useful in navigating through the complexities of legislative initiatives. I lead through collaboration and my impact on Council and the amount of progress we were able to make, during the most challenging health and economic crisis of our lifetime, attests to my ability to get things done,” Lambros said in a press release.

In a phone conversation Tuesday, Lambros said she can remain on Council while putting herself on the ballot. While she initially thought she wouldn’t have the time to enter the race, she was urged by others to do so. “If I can be effective and people have faith in me to do public service, I’m willing to go for it,” she said. “My main motivation is COVID and all of the economic challenges we are going to have on the municipal level and the state level. I think I could be a good adviser at the state level as to what we need, for main streets and small business. We need investment and we need to figure out how we’re going to balance our budget and keep property taxes down so people don’t keep leaving New Jersey.”

On Council, Lambros chairs the Economic Development Committee and is liaison to the Princeton Merchants Association, among other committees. Her focus has been on small business recovery and economic revitalization during the pandemic. more

AN ERA GONE BY: This historic painting from Joseph Bonaparte’s Point Breeze estate, by Thomas Birch, dates from 1818 and is one of many works of art documenting the property in Bordentown once owned by Napoleon’s brother. News of its preservation has caught the attention of news sources across the globe.

By Anne Levin

Since the New York Times published an article about plans by D&R Greenway Land Trust of Princeton and partners to preserve the Point Breeze Bonaparte estate in Bordentown last month, media from all over the world have been clamoring for the story.

“Yesterday I was on a call with a Spanish news service,” said D&R Greenway CEO and President Linda Mead on Tuesday. “Joseph Bonaparte was the exiled king of Spain, so they are so excited about it. It has been amazing to me how many people have come forward since we made this announcement, and how many calls we have gotten, from everywhere.”

Point Breeze was the palatial estate of Joseph Bonaparte, the elder brother of Napoleon Bonaparte and former King of Spain and Naples. He fled to the United States in 1815 and bought the Point Breeze estate in 1817 from diplomat Stephen Sayre. The land is high on the Bordentown Bluffs overlooking extensive marshlands and the confluence of Crosswicks Creek and the Delaware River. The location, between Philadelphia and New York, was documented in many paintings of the era that can be seen today in museums. Remnants of tunnels, leading from Bonaparte’s mansions to the waterways, can still be viewed.

At the time, the estate included sculpture gardens, coach trails, bridges, stables, a gardener’s house, a lake, and a three-story mansion “that contained an extensive wine cellar, an extravagant art collection, and a library that contained 8,000 volumes, more than the Library of Congress at that time, and Bonaparte employed hundreds of people at the estate,” according to an article in Royal Central, one of the international news services to cover the story along with London’s Daily Mail and the Spanish news service EFE. There have also been calls from individuals with Bonaparte connections. “So many people have been in touch with us,” said Mead. “Some have said they are descendants of Bonapartes. Others have objects like chairs or china that have come from Bonapartes.” more

By Anne Levin

Danielle Jackson

With a grandfather who is a veteran of the National Guard and two uncles who served in Vietnam, Danielle “Dani” Jackson has always felt a strong connection to American military history.

The Rider University junior is equally fascinated by film. The recipient of a $5,000 Undergraduate Research Scholar Award (URSA), Jackson has turned her two passions into an ambitious, 12-part documentary series that tells the stories of Black veterans of the two World Wars. “A Two-Front War” is her effort to raise awareness of their forgotten accomplishments while fighting abroad, and their efforts toward civil rights at home. A Kickstarter campaign has upped the budget to more than $8,000, allowing her to finalize the first episode of the series, which should be available in May.

“Many people don’t realize that African Americans have been in the American military since the Revolutionary War,” Jackson said. “Typically, we think it has been since the Civil War. African Americans are usually just portrayed as slaves. We show their bondage and their oppression. But I want to show their strength. I would like for these veterans to be remembered for the super soldiers they were.”

Rider chooses a small group of students each year for the research award, which promotes independent student research and scholarship. “I applied for the grant with my professor and adviser, Dr. Shawn Kildea, last year,” said Jackson. “Everyone else got a chance to write a paper. I decided to combine both my majors — history and film — into this project. African Americans kind of get a low blow when it comes to this history. I started working on it, and it just started picking up speed over the summer.” more

By Donald Gilpin

Bolstering support for school programs and at the same time promoting shopping and dining at more than 40 establishments around town, Princeton’s public elementary schools have teamed up to create Princeton Perks, a discount card program open to everyone.

Organized by the schools’ PTOs, the program is designed as a “win-win-win” for businesses, who would see a boost in customers; shoppers, who get a special deal when they spend their dollars locally; and the PTOs and schools, who raise much needed funds to support students and teachers.

“We pride ourselves on being a strong community, taking care of each other,” Littlebrook Elementary School PTO Co-Presidents Sonja Ernst and Kati Dunn wrote in an email.  “Princeton Perks’ initiative is an excellent example of how we keep standing together, beyond individuals, beyond individual schools, and beyond single businesses. We are one town working together.”

Anyone may purchase a Princeton Perks card for $25 by visiting princetonperks.com, and then selecting their neighborhood school’s portal. Cards will be available for purchase through February 28, 2021 for use through December 31, 2021.

Cards will also be available at special Princeton Perks booths in Palmer Square on the next two Saturdays from 12 to 4 p.m. and at the Princeton Shopping Center on the next two Sundays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Most businesses offer cardholders 10 percent off. The Princeton Perks website includes an up-to-date list of participating restaurants and retailers, and further details on the deals offered. The Princeton Perks logo is displayed in shop windows or near the register of participating businesses. more

By Stuart Mitchner

But we loved with a love that was more than love.

—Edgar Allan Poe, from “Annabel Lee”

This post-Valentine’s Day adventure was launched by a letter I found in Horace Wyndam’s The Magnificent Montez: From Courtesan to Convert (Hutchinson 1935). Written in the revolutionary year of 1848 — from King Ludwig I of Bavaria to the woman he made the Countess of Landsfeld, alias Lola Montez, who was born Eliza Rosanna Gilbert in County Sligo, Ireland, on February 17, 1821 — the letter begins:

“Oh, my Lolita! A ray of sunshine at the break of day! A stream of light in an obscured sky! Hope ever causes chords long forgotten to resound, and existence becomes once again pleasant as of yore. Such were the feelings which animated me during that night of happiness when, thanks to you alone, everything was sheer joy. Thy spirit lifted up mine out of sadness; never did an intoxication equal the one I then felt!”

After shooting the king’s translator, flash forward to mid-20th-century America and read the opening lines of The Confession of a White Widowed Male:

“Lolita, light of my life, fire of my loins. My sin, my soul, Lo-lee-ta …. She was Lo, plain Lo in the morning, standing four foot ten in one sock. She was Lola in slacks. She was Dolly at school. She was Dolores on the dotted line. But in my arms she was always Lolita.”

I’ve been here before. Last fall I cushioned the loss of Prof. Nabokov’s former student, Ruth Bader Ginsberg, with a visit to The Annotated Lolita, in which another of his former students, Alfred Appel Jr., devotes almost five pages of commentary to the novel’s opening paragraph. Appel gives special attention to Humbert’s fixation with Poe’s “Annabel Lee,” from whom neither angels nor demons can “dissever” the poet’s soul (“But we loved with a love that was more than love”). While the line “Lola in slacks” prompts a reference to Marlene Dietrich’s Lola in von Sternberg’s film The Blue Angel, there’s no mention of the living, breathing Lola Montez who inspired Ludwig’s cri de coeur. The deposed monarch was writing from a villa on the Riviera while his lovely Lola was in England being denounced by the London papers as “Bavaria’s famous strumpet,” “the notorious courtesan” blamed for “the sanguinary and destructive conduct of the Munich mob.” more

“THE MANIC MONOLOGUES”: McCarter Theatre Center, in association with Princeton University Health Services, The 24 Hour Plays, and Innovations in Socially Distant Performance, is launching “The Manic Monologues.” Created by Zack Burton (left) and Elisa Hofmeister (center), the monologues form the core of a virtual experience conceived and directed by Elena Araoz (right). (Photos courtesy of the artists)

By Donald H. Sanborn III

McCarter Theatre will launch The Manic Monologues on February 18. The free interactive website is described by a press release as “a digital theatrical experience to disrupt stigma and spotlight a conversation about mental health.” McCarter is presenting the project in association with Princeton University Health Services; The 24 Hour Plays; and Innovations in Socially Distant Performance, a project of Princeton University’s Lewis Center for the Arts.

The monologues, and the panel discussions that complement them, concern “our moment,” says McCarter’s Resident Producer Debbie Bisno. Topics include the extent to which mental health is affected by social media, racial injustice, and COVID.

The Manic Monologues was created by Zack Burton and Elisa Hofmeister. It is a collection of true stories submitted by a range of people living with mental health challenges. The anthology of vignettes was inspired by Burton’s personal experience; in 2017 he was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. (At the time he was completing his Ph.D. in geology at Stanford). Burton says that the play was conceived “about a year after my diagnosis.”

Burton and Hofmeister, who were dating at the time, aimed to improve the conversation about mental health. “We were struggling with this lack of hopeful, uplifting stories,” Burton explains. “Every one of us knows someone touched in some way by a mental health condition … this is a core component of the human experience. It’s a spectrum, and it’s also equal opportunity, so everyone’s affected. So we wanted to capture that diversity.” more

Launched last October, McCarter Theatre Center’s Fireside Chats have been popular with patrons taking part in online programming during the pandemic. Hosted by Artistic Director Sarah Rasmussen, shown here with U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith in an episode to be aired next week, the discussions are filmed “fireside” on McCarter’s front lawn and air on the theater’s free YouTube channel. Past episodes, which are available to view, have included Princeton RISE fellow Valeria Torres-Olivares, actor Lew Gantwerk, Jammin’ Crepes co-owner Kathy Klockenbrink, former Mayor Liz Lempert, the Rev. Dr. Theresa S. Thames, and fashion designer Assata Andrews. Visit mccarter.org for more information. In addition to Smith, look for Princeton Record Exchange’s Jon Lambert, Tay Walker of the YWCA Princeton, and Trenton Central High School theater educator Felicia Brown in future episodes. Visit mccarter.org/firesidechats for information.

NOTABLE DEBUT: Pianist Michelle Cann is soloist, for the first time, with the Philadelphia Orchestra on February 18 and 25 as part of the current Digital Stage concert series. With conductor Yannick Nezet-Seguin on the podium, Cann plays a 1934 work by Black composer Florence Price. (Photo by Jeff Fusco)

Pianist Michelle Cann makes her Philadelphia Orchestra debut with the Orchestra’s first performance of Florence Price’s Piano Concerto in One Movement in digital performances on February 18 and 25. Also on the program, conducted by Yannick Nezet-Seguin, are works by Rossini and Schubert.

The Digital Stage is the orchestra’s online content platform. Performances have been reimagined and filmed, without audiences, at the Mann Center for the Performing Arts and Verizon Hall at the Kimmel Center. Concerts are available on demand for ticket-holders for one week following the premieres. The concerts with Cann were originally scheduled, pre-pandemic, for March 4-11, 2021. more

“SHAPELESS ENDEAVOUR”: Ryan Gander’s cararra marble carving of a dolos, a form usually used as a barrier to interrupt natural tide cycles with the intention of preventing coastal erosion, is one of the works featured in the virtual exhibition “Natural and Conventional Signs.”

In the virtual exhibition “Natural and Conventional Signs,” U.K. artist Ryan Gander presents a selection of new works directly guided by his research at Princeton University undertaken during his time as a Hodder Fellow (2019-2020) and made during a period of reflection while the world paused amid a global pandemic.

Gander invites an audience into his new gallery space within his studio, Solid Haus, in rural Suffolk, two hours east of London. He has assembled a show in which the works have duality in meaning and utility; subverting the signs, tropes, and markers seen in the everyday world to shine new light on how we position ourselves in relation to the values of time, money, opportunity, attention, and privilege.  more

COFFEY BREWING: Tyler Coffey, left, controls the puck in action this winter in his freshman season for the Colorado College men’s hockey team. Former Princeton Day School standout forward Coffey has an assist in 10 appearances for the Tigers so far in his debut campaign. (Photo provided courtesy of Colorado College Athletics Communications)

By Bill Alden

Tyler Coffey is living out a dream this winter as he starts his career for the Colorado College men’s hockey team. The former Princeton Day School star decided years ago that he would like to play college hockey someday.

“In the eighth grade, I knew it was something I wanted to pursue,” said Coffey, reflecting on his goal to play at the next level. “My parents were always big on me getting an education and being able to play hockey at the same time.”

In addition to thriving on the ice for the Panthers, Coffey appreciated the education he got at PDS.

“I felt PDS was the best option right there, I was there through my junior year,” said Coffey. “The three years I did have at PDS really prepared me for Colorado College.”

After starring for PDS over three seasons, Coffey moved on to juniors to help increase his chances of playing at the next level, playing for the New Jersey Hitmen of the United States Premier Hockey League (USPHL). He was named the USPHL Forward of the Year in 2017 after leading the league in goals (37) and points (60). A year later, Coffey tallied 46 points on 27 goals and 19 assists for the Hitmen.

Coffey then headed west to play for Tri-City Storm (Neb.) and Sioux Falls Stampede (S.D.) of the United States Hockey League (USHL). He was sidelined by injury with Tri-City and then scored 12 points on six goals and six assists in 18 games for  Sioux Falls during the 2019-20 campaign.

For Coffey, playing juniors proved to be a key stepping stone in his transition to Division I college hockey. more

MIGHTY CASEY: Princeton High girls’ basketball player Casey Serxner drives past a Hopewell Valley player last week. Freshman guard Serxner has helped spark PHS to a promising 3-1 start. In upcoming action, the Tigers are slated to play at Steinert on February 17 and at Trenton Central on February 23. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Coming off a disappointing 5-20 campaign in 2019-20, the Princeton High girls’ basketball team didn’t waste any time serving notice that things are going to be different this winter.

In its season opener against Hamilton West on January 29, PHS rolled to a 43-19 win over the Hornets. Six days later, the Tigers routed Nottingham 58-17.

“We are much better this year, it is just a totally different vibe,” said PHS head coach Dave Kosa.

“Actually it is a totally different philosophy; we are uptempo this year, we are pressing.”

Freshman point guard Casey Serxner has emerged as a catalyst for the squad, speeding things up on both ends of the court for the Tigers.

“Casey has been doing a great job as far as leading us on the break,” said Kosa of Serxner, who also stars at soccer for PHS.

“She also pressures the other team’s point guard so it really spearheads our offense and defense. She never tires, she is always on the go. That is the type of person she is, always working no matter what sport she is playing. She has a lot on her plate. We are asking her to run the offense, we are asking her be the half court girl at our press. She is looking to be the anticipator and get some steals which she has done.”

Last week, Serxner helped PHS pass a big early season test, tallying 11 points with three assists and two rebounds as the Tigers edged Hopewell Valley 40-37 on February 9.

“They were undefeated and they have one of the better point guards in the league in Franki Gomez,” said Kosa. more

HARD DRIVING: Princeton High boys’ basketball player Ethan Guy, right, drives to the hoop in recent action. Last Monday, senior forward Guy tallied 16 points in a losing cause as PHS fell 50-40 to Lawrence High. The Tigers, now 0-4, are slated to host Steinert on February 17 and Trenton Central on February 23. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

As a three-year starter for the Princeton High boys’ basketball team, Ethan Guy is looking to give his teammates the benefit of his experience.

“It is being that leader to keep this program running and build up a lot of these juniors and sophomores,” said senior forward Guy. “I am trying to be a leader and let them experience the varsity level.”

Last Monday, Guy set a good example for the squad’s younger players, tallying 16 points in a losing cause as PHS fell 50-40 to Lawrence High, dropping to 0-4. While a late Tiger rally fell short, the squad did show some offensive cohesion, particularly in the second quarter when they outscored the Cardinals 13-9.

“I felt that we were comfortable, we had three practices this week,” said Guy. “We implemented some more and added on to that offense a little bit. It is nice to just get comfortable.” more

INSIDE PRESENCE: Princeton Day School boys’ basketball player Ethan Garita puts up a shot in the paint over a Pennington School defender last week. Senior center Garita scored 14 points in the February 9 contest to help PDS prevail 50-49. The Panthers, who fell 62-51 at the Hun School last Thursday to move to 2-1, are slated to host Hun in a rematch on February 18 before playing at Pennington on February 23. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Ethan Garita struggled in the first half as the Princeton Day School boys’ basketball team hosted the Pennington School last week.

PDS senior center Garita managed just two points in the first half as the Panthers found themselves trailing archrival Pennington 24-23 at halftime in the February 9 contest.

“In the first half I was kind of getting frustrated, I wasn’t getting the calls from the refs,” said Garita. “You have to just keep fighting it out and keep working and it will come to you.”

At the break, PDS head coach Eugene Burroughs urged the Panthers to fight harder in the second half.

“He told us to keep working; we just wanted to be more aggressive, grab rebounds, and talk on the floor,” recalled Garita. “We had a lot of times where we were kind of selfish and we weren’t passing the ball and running our plays.” more

February 10, 2021

All was quiet by the bridge on Mercer Road crossing the Stony Brook, with just a few geese in sight, after last Sunday’s snowfall. More snow is in the forecast for later this week. (Photo by Charles R. Plohn)

By Anne Levin

At the end of a marathon, five-and-a-half-hour meeting Monday evening that ended after 1 a.m. on Tuesday, Princeton’s Zoning Board of Adjustment voted in favor of a plan to turn an office building at 20 Nassau Street into a 180-room hotel.

Chicago-based Graduate Hotels, which has properties in university towns in the United States and the United Kingdom, will repurpose the building at Nassau and Chambers streets while demolishing a three-story building on Chambers Street and replacing it with a five-story addition to the hotel. The entrance will be on Chambers Street.

While some residents and business owners have been in favor of the plan, several who live on neighboring Bank Street have expressed major concerns about blocked light, traffic, noise, and the project’s size and scale. Representatives of Graduate Hotels met with residents several times over the past few months to hear their concerns. But there were still worries voiced at the meeting Monday night.

During public comment, homeowner Chip Crider said that while original projections for the hotel might have been made at a time when the economy was different, “there’s no reason we should take a hit because their assumptions are wrong. It’s a nice application,” he said, “but it’s oversized and oversold.”

Another neighbor objected to a solid brick wall to be built behind the Chambers Street section, saying it would block light and make his utility bills go up. Melina Bilic of Bank Street said she didn’t understand why she couldn’t get permission to put a skylight in, while “someone can get a waiver for 178 rooms. I don’t think that’s fair.”

Bank Street resident and professional planner Tony Nelessen commented that while Princeton needs another hotel, the proposed plan is too big. He noted that the Graduate Hotel in New Haven, Connecticut, has only 72 rooms. “Why do we need 178 rooms in Princeton?” he asked. “Is it to make the model work, or is it about some level of financial greed?” Nelessen was critical of the plan for the back of the building on Chambers Street that will face Bank Street properties, saying it looks like a penal colony or warehouse. The plan “is a slap in the face to the entire historic neighborhood,” he said. “The hotel will have a lasting impact on the Bank Street neighborhood.” more

By Donald Gilpin

Over the weekend New Jersey passed the 1 million mark in COVID-19 vaccine doses administered, with 1,085,595 reported by Tuesday morning, February 9, including 842,971 first doses and 242,362 second doses.

The demand for vaccines continues to exceed the supply, however, and residents throughout the state continue to face frustration and delays in scheduling appointments to get the shot. On Monday, February 8, New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy pointed out that the vaccine picture in the state is improving, with New Jersey expecting nearly 250,000 doses from the federal government next week, up from about 130,000 doses per week delivered in recent weeks.

He emphasized the accelerating trend in vaccinations in New Jersey, with the first 250,000 in 29 days in late December and early January, then just 10 days beyond that to pass 500,000, then just 16 days for the next 500,000. So far, 55 percent of doses in the state have been the Moderna vaccine and 45 percent from Pfizer, according to the New Jersey Department of Health (NJDOH).

The state has announced that during the current vaccine shortage it will no longer supply vaccines to the Princeton Health Department and other municipally-run clinics. Clinics run by the Princeton Health Department have administered a total of 816 COVID vaccine doses, but will remain on a temporary hold until supply increases to meet demand.

Princeton Mayor Mark Freda and Princeton Council wrote in their February 8 COVID-19 Update that when additional doses become available, “we are prepared to schedule further local clinics to help serve those residents who face challenges in receiving care at the larger regional sites.”  more