January 27, 2023

Princeton Police have released a composite sketch by the New Jersey State Police of a suspect in a residential burglary which occurred on January 11 between the hours of 11 a.m. and 12 p.m. at a home on Mercer Street. The burglar allegedly entered through a rear door, which was forced open.

According to police, the residence was ransacked, and the suspect took possession of cash and jewelry. The suspect is described as a light-skinned Black male, approximately 5’11 to 6’0, weighing approximately 160 to 170 pounds, with a normal build. He was wearing a blue/black ski knit hat, a black waist-length “puffy” jacket, a black backpack, and black shoes.

Anyone who recognizes this individual or has information should contact Detective Allie at (609) 921-2100 ext. 2123, or email rallie@princetonnj.gov.

January 25, 2023

Work is progressing at the new Graduate Hotel at Nassau and Chambers streets, which is projected to open in May 2024. It is one of several construction projects underway in the area. (Photo by Charles R. Plohn)

By Anne Levin

A lawsuit seeking to reverse approval for the Bridge Point 8 project, a 5.5 million-square-foot warehouse and distribution center in West Windsor Township, was recently filed in Mercer County Superior Court by two Township residents. The suit against the Township, its Planning Board, the developer, and the owner of the 539-acre property has focused much attention on the massive project bordered by Quakerbridge Road, the Northeast Corridor train tracks, and Route 1.

But the Bridge Point 8 development is only one of several construction projects currently underway, or awaiting final approval, along the highway. From Princeton University’s 107-acre Lake Campus in West Windsor to the site of the demolished Sleepy Hollow Motel in Lawrence Township, there is activity up and down the heavily traveled thoroughfare. Hotels, convenience stores, retail stores, condominiums, and apartments are among the projects listed on West Windsor Township’s website and confirmed by the Township’s Land Use Manager Sam Surtees.

Plans for the Lake Campus, on a tract between Lake Carnegie and Route 1 north of Washington Road, the University’s first development in West Windsor, include housing for graduate and post-doctoral students, a racquet center with a fitness space, a softball stadium, rugby fields, a cross-country course, a central utility building, and a parking garage with more than 600 spaces. Construction is ongoing and a completion date has not been announced. more

By Anne Levin

Princeton Council passed two ordinances at its Monday night meeting. One lowers speed limits on Witherspoon Street and John Street to 20 miles per hour; the other approves creation of a new affordable housing overlay zone along portions of Witherspoon Street.

Before those actions were considered, several members of the Princeton Police Department were sworn in, in front of numerous family members and colleagues. Chief Jon Bucchere and Mayor Mark Freda presided, swearing in four new officers and promoting four others to new positions. Sergeant Tom Lagomarsino is now police lieutenant. Corporal Don Mathews is now police sergeant. Patrol Officer Darwin Kieffer and Detective Eric Dawson were named police corporals.

The ordinance related to the affordable housing overlay zone was approved following several comments, some in favor and some not, by members of the community. Housing overlay zones are added layers on top of existing zoning ordinances that provide incentives for developers to build housing, particularly affordable housing, within specific districts.

Maria Juega spoke in support of the action, but expressed concerns about a possible negative impact to residents of properties along Witherspoon Street who could be displaced. “It inevitably raises the specter of urban renewal projects which are well intentioned but result in displacement of low-income ethnic minority populations,” she said.

Her concerns were echoed by Veronica Olivares, of the town’s Human Services Commission. “The neighbors have no idea this is happening,” she said. “I’d like Council to consider a plan to have additional conversations with the developers, and also have talks with residents, with a Spanish interpreter.” Resident Michael Floyd said he was worried about the 45-foot height allowance, urging Council to cap it at 35 feet. more

RESTORATION GRANT: The State of New Jersey has awarded $552,000 to Princeton for ecological work at Community Park North. It is one of the state’s first Natural Climate Solutions grants.

By Donald Gilpin

Princeton will be receiving $552,000, one of the state’s first Natural Climate Solutions (NCS) grants, to be used for the ecological restoration of 40 acres at Community Park North.

Wendy Mager, president of the Friends of Princeton Open Space (FOPOS), which collaborated with the Municipality of Princeton in applying for the grant, explained why the award is so important.  “It demonstrates that Princeton is recognizing and acting on the fact that open space, which happily we have a substantial amount of, doesn’t just take care of itself,” she said. “It has to be taken care of.”

She continued, “That’s particularly true because the impacts of invasive species and deer have made it difficult or impossible for forests and other open spaces to naturally regenerate, and this area in Community Park North is a dramatic illustration of that. There are big open areas where the forest canopy is gone because of natural events like wind storms.

What happens is that they are taken over by invasive species, and the young saplings that would otherwise regenerate are either crowded out, shaded out or choked by vines. This project is going to address that in a big way, so that we don’t lose a forest that we made an effort to preserve.” more

BIGGER IN SIZE, BROADER IN SCOPE: A rendering of the Princeton University Art Museum, which is the subject of a talk by director James Steward this week. The building designed by Adjaye Associates is currently under construction. (Design rendering by Adjaye Associates)

By Anne Levin

When the reconfigured Princeton University Art Museum opens at a date projected for late next year, the building, which has been under construction since December 2021, will have doubled in size. But the design by British-based architect David Adjaye is about more than increasing space.

Equally key to the project is the way the reimagined museum will present and interpret its collections, which range from antiquities to contemporary art. “The demands we as a society are making of our museums are changing,” said James Steward, the museum’s director since April 2009. Steward will deliver a talk on the topic at Frist Campus Center, Room 302, on Thursday, January 26 at 4:30 p.m.

“A number of other institutions are also responding to that change in ways that are perhaps different from us,” he continued. “I think our approach, in which we continue to pay serious attention to the past while focusing on issues of special importance today, is what is special and unique about this project. There are a lot of cultural institutions that are challenged to figure out how to do both of these things.”

In a conversation last weekend, Steward wasn’t revealing too much of “A New Museum for a New Age,” the title of his talk. “Now that we’re very deep into the process of curating the future galleries, I will offer some hints,” he said. “But I won’t give it all away.” more

By Donald Gilpin

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy’s proposal in his January 10 State of the State address that the state ease restrictions on liquor licenses was welcome news for many Princeton residents, members of the business community, and public officials, but whether that proposal will result in more accessible licenses for local restaurants remains to be seen.

“It’s good to say, ‘Hey, let’s start to talk about this. That’s a huge step forward,” said Princeton Mayor Mark Freda. “But the devil’s really going to be in the details here.”

With municipal licenses for public consumption limited to one for every 3,000 residents, according to the current law that dates back to 1948, the resale value for licenses in Princeton is over $1 million. 

“The system is so archaic,” said Councilwoman Michelle Pirone Lambros. “We’re probably the only state in the nation that is this archaic in terms of our liquor licenses.”

Freda went on to explain the difficulty of accommodating both current license holders and potential new applicants. “They have to come up with a process,” he said. “There’s value to that license for current license holders, and depending what town you’re in the value could vary widely. There has to be something to protect your investment. They’re going to have to find a way to balance it out, but it’s a good step that we’re at a point where we’re going to try to figure this out and find a way to move forward.” more

By Donald Gilpin

Earlier this month New Jersey became the first state in the country to require schools to teach information literacy and media literacy, in seeking to provide students with the skills to accurately assess information and to combat “fake news” and misinformation.

“Our democracy remains under sustained attack through the proliferation of disinformation that is eroding the role of truth in our political and civic discourse,” said New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy in signing the bipartisan legislation to establish the requirement that K-12 schools in the state teach information literacy. “It is our responsibility to ensure our nation’s future leaders are equipped with the tools necessary to identify fact from fiction. I am proud to sign legislation that is critical to the success of New Jersey’s students and essential to the preservation of democracy.”

The importance of information literacy is not news to the Princeton Public Schools (PPS) and its students. On the issues of information literacy, teaching critical thinking skills, and preparing students to sort out fact from fiction amidst the blitz of information they confront every day in the contemporary multi-media world, PPS has a significant head start.

Princeton Middle School (PMS) Librarian Carolyn Bailey, who co-teaches with teachers in all subject areas on library/media curriculum-related lessons, has been aware of the conversation surrounding this information literacy bill over the past several years. “From my point of view our school district has been, and continues to be, ahead of the curve in media/information literacy education,” she wrote in an email. “Our K-12 library/media curriculum is up to date and cognizant of the issues this bill addresses. Our librarians and media specialists partner with teachers in all subject areas to ensure students are using the best resources for information and understand why credible sources are important.” more

By Stuart Mitchner

I try to become a singer. The guitar has always been abused with distortion units and funny sorts of effects, but when you don’t do that and just let the genuine sound come through, there’s a whole magic there.

—Jeff Beck (1944-2023), 2010 NPR interview

The only time I saw virtuoso guitarist Jeff Beck in person was at the Fillmore East, where he, Rod Stewart, and the Jeff Beck Group performed a memorable cover of Willie Dixon’s “I Ain’t Superstitious.” It was October 1968 and Halloween was in the air as Stewart keened “bad luck ain’t got me so far” while Beck stalked his trail like a demonic ventriloquist seemingly reanimating every black cat, hell hound, witch, or nightmare that ever bedeviled mortal man since the raven rapped at Edgar Allan Poe’s chamber door.

I’d first heard Jeff Beck two years earlier on the Yardbirds’ single “Shapes of Things,” which my wife and I played on numerous jukeboxes during a pre-nuptial hitchhiking trip through Italy. It was an astonishing creation, a feedback-driven march into a brave new world of psychedelia. I didn’t know who Beck was at the time, nor that he’d gone to school in South London with my old road companion Roger Yates and played in a skiffle band with several of Roger’s mates.

Later that year in Ann Arbor I saw Blow Up, Antonioni’s remake of “swinging London,” where a cosmically bored, glazed-eyed audience in a Soho club sat silent and unresponsive as the Yardbirds played a blues jam onstage. I still didn’t know that Roger’s schoolmate was the guitarist slamming his instrument into the amp in a futile quest for feedback or some sound or act outrageous enough to bring the dead crowd to life; nor did I know that another future guitar legend Jimmy Page was on the same small stage smiling over the scene as if in expectation of the moment Jeff Beck would throw his guitar on the floor, jump up and down on it, and hold the broken thing in the air, flourishing it before flinging it into a seething, screaming, come-wildly-to-life mob fighting over the remains. It all ended with the film’s photographer protagonist David Hemmings racing down a Soho alley with a piece of the mutilated guitar in his hand, before casting it aside, where the next passersby picked it up only to toss it in the gutter, leaving it there like roadkill.  more

HEALING THROUGH MUSIC: Jazz pianist Fred Hersch appears at Richardson Auditorium with “Breath by Breath: Responding to Illness Through Music,” on February 9. (Photo by Herman Blaustein)

Jazz pianist and 15-time Grammy nominee Fred Hersch makes his Princeton University Concerts (PUC) debut on Thursday, February 9 at 7:30 p.m. in Richardson Auditorium with “Breath by Breath: Responding to Illness Through Music,” a Healing with Music series event. Tickets are $10-$40.

Earlier that day, at 12:30 p.m., Hersch will perform as part of PUC’s Live Music Meditation series. Silent meditation begins at 12 p.m. Admission to that event is free.

On Wednesday, February 8 at 7:30 p.m., the Princeton Garden Theatre will introduce audiences to the pianist’s story through a documentary screening of The Ballad of Fred Hersch, including a live post-screening discussion with Hersch, moderated by his student, PUC artist and local composer/pianist Gregg Kallor. The theater is at 160 Nassau Street. Admission is $9-$14. more

AIRBORNE: Dancers from the Philadelphia Ballet rehearse a program of three new works, on stage at the Perelman Theater at the Kimmel Center, 300 South Broad Street in Philadelphia, February 3-11. “Forward Motion” features ballets by Hope Boykin, Andonis Foniadakis, and Juliano Nunes. (Photo by Arian Molina Soca)

“Forward Motion,” a program of new works by choreographers Hope Boykin, Juliano Nunes, and Andonis Foniadakis will be presented February 3-11 by the Philadelphia Ballet at the Perelman Theater of the Kimmel Center, 300 South Broads Street in Philadelphia.

“It is such a thrill to present new works that push the boundaries of ballet and move the artform forward,” said Artistic Director Angel Corella. “We are honored to have three talented and sought-after choreographers crafting new and unique ballets for our audiences here in Philadelphia this February.”

Now in its fourth iteration, Philadelphia Ballet’s New Works series offers audiences performance experiences in the intimate setting of the Perelman Theater. “Forward Motion” advances the company’s commitment to presenting dynamic and innovative dance. more

BACK AT RICHARDSON: Violinist Alexi Kenney returns to Princeton with “Shifting Ground,” presented by Princeton University Concerts at Richardson Auditorium on February 16.

Young violinist Alexi Kenney has appeared at Princeton University Concerts’ (PUC) Performances Up Close, Healing with Music, and Live Music Meditation series over the past two years. The 28-year-old returns to Richardson Auditorium on Thursday, February 16 at 7:30 p.m.

On the program, titled “Shifting Ground,” are works by J.S. Bach alongside pieces for solo violin and violin/electronics by composers of our time, including pieces by Samuel Adams, Du Yun, and Paul Wiancko, and new commissions by Salina Fisher and Angélica Negrón. Jane Cox, Tony Award-nominated lighting designer, director of the Program in Theater at Princeton University’s Lewis Center for the Arts, will design the lighting for this program.

“My hope is that through the course of the program each piece enlivens those around it, framing Bach in a new light and placing contemporary violin works in context — and showing that art need not be defined by era to express our shared humanity,” said Kenney. more

JURIED ART EXHIBITION: Kenoka Wagner, an artist from Revere, Pa., will serve as juror of the “10th Annual Youth Art Exhibition.” The exhibition opens at Phillips’ Mill in New Hope, Pa., on January 29 and will be open to the public on weekends from 12 to 4 p.m. through February 19.

The “10th Annual Youth Art Exhibition” debuts at Phillips’ Mill on January 29 and will be open to the public weekends from 12 to 4 p.m. through February 19. After transitioning to online exhibitions during the height of the pandemic, “Youth Art” now returns to in-person shows at the historic Mill on River Road in New Hope, Pa., in addition to offering the event online.

Launched with a handful of schools in 2014, the Youth Art Committee continues to work in harmony with area public and private school art departments with 22 schools participating this year. Art teachers curate the show, selecting students’ work in the disciplines of painting, works on paper, 3D works, photography, and a new category this year, non-photography digital art. A juror chosen by the Mill awards cash prizes in each category, as well as a Best in Show award.  more

“TRASHED ART CONTEST”: Winning artwork from the 2018 TrashedArt Contest is shown in the Lawrence Headquarters Branch of the Mercer County Library System. Submissions for this year’s TrashedArt Contest must be received by March 8.

In March and April, art will be displayed for the 14th Annual TrashedArt Contest at the Lawrence Headquarters Branch. Patrons will have a chance to view photographs of the artwork and vote for the People’s Choice awards in person at each of the nine branches and virtually on the MCLS’ website. Winners will be announced at the TrashedArt Contest Reception at the Lawrence Headquarters Branch on Tuesday, April 18 at 6:30 p.m. The contest celebrates Earth Day by encouraging patrons to turn ordinary trash into extraordinary art.

The contest is limited to one entry per artist. Classes or groups may participate only if they register ahead of time. See mcl.org/events/trashedart for details. The library will accept artwork no earlier than Wednesday, March 1 and no later than Wednesday, March 8. Selected artwork will be on display at the Lawrence Headquarters Branch throughout the months of March and April. Adult patrons (ages 14 and up) who live, work, or go to school in Mercer County are eligible to participate. more

“ETCHING”: This work by Scarlett Cai is featured in “Princeton High School Emerging Artists Showcase 2023,” on view February 1 through February 26 at the Gourgaud Gallery in Cranbury.

The Cranbury Arts Council and the Gourgaud Gallery are hosting the “Princeton High School Emerging Artists Showcase 2023” exhibition February 1 through February 26.

This exhibition features recent artwork from the upper-level studio courses from Princeton High School: 2D II, 2D III, 3D II, 3D III, Art of Craft, and Studio IV. These emerging artists are beginning to explore advanced conceptual notions of design, identity, place, and more using a variety of media, including printmaking, painting, drawing, ceramics, and sculpture.   

A closing reception is on February 26 from 1-3 p.m. 

The Gourgaud Gallery is located in Town Hall, 23-A North Main Street, in Cranbury, and is free and open to the public Monday  through Friday from  p.m. to 3 p.m.

For more information, visit cranburyartscouncil.org.

“CONTEXT IS KING”: Works by Phillip McConnell are on view in the Main Gallery at Artworks Trenton through February 25. An opening reception is on February 3 from 6 to 8 p.m.

Artworks Trenton celebrates the beginning of their 35th season with the opening of a groundbreaking new exhibition featuring the work of Phillip McConnell and Dionne Jackson. The exhibitions presented in 2023 will capture the organization’s commitment to creativity, community, and connection. From now through February 25, McConnell’s show, “Context is King,” will be presented in the Main Gallery alongside Jackson’s show, “Just As I Am,” in the Community Gallery with a 2023 Season Opening Reception on February 3 from 6 to 8 p.m.

McConnell is an emerging artist from Trenton. His focus surrounds the creation of abstract, surrealist digital artwork. “I specialize in an art form called glitch art,” said McConnell. “Glitch art is the anesthetization of digital or analog errors, such as artifacts and other ‘bugs,’ by corrupting digital code. In my work I discuss my experience as a Black creative with the intention to inspire and connect others.”    

With his exhibition, McConnell seeks to explore the relationship between language and meaning, and between context and content. The work in this exhibition will be an amalgamation of two different art forms — poetry, and visual art. Each piece of artwork will be accompanied by a poem, and this exhibition will explore the relationship between art and poetry. “The themes of poetry within this project all explore a journey of self, and inspire an honest discussion on what the world looks like when you are an outlier to your own culture.” said McConnell.  more

FAMILY PRIDE:  “I am very proud of our company’s longevity — now 76 years! Continuing our family tradition is especially fulfilling, and I feel I am the custodian for the next generation. And now my son, Paul Jr., is in the business, and we look forward to continuing to enjoy our work and provide an important service for our clients. We are a family business in every way.” Paul Pennacchi (left), president of A. Pennacchi & Sons Masonry Restoration & Waterproofing Company, is shown with his son Paul Jr., who is vice president.

By Jean Stratton

Paul Pennacchi Sr. loves what he does. He enjoys the interaction with his co-workers, clients, his many and varied projects, and he is proud of the longtime family business, which he now heads.

A. Pennacchi & Sons Masonry Restoration & Waterproofing Company is a thriving organization that has benefited from the hard work and dedication of each generation that contributed to its success.

Now headquartered in Hamilton, it was established in 1947 in Trenton by brothers Anthony and John Pennacchi. Its storied history actually began earlier when Gaetano Pennacchi arrived from Italy in 1918, and settled in Trenton.

“He was a mason,” explains Paul Pennacchi,” and he started helping his neighbors with repair work on their houses. It was a side trade for him since he also worked full-time for General Motors, but it grew into a real business.” more

PIERCE COMPETITOR: Princeton University men’s basketball player Caden Pierce, right, looks to get around Dartmouth’s Dusan Nescovic last Saturday afternoon at Jadwin Gym. Freshman forward Pierce posted a double-double with 17 points and 13 rebounds in the contest to help Princeton rally for a 93-90 overtime win against the Big Green. The Tigers, now 14-5 overall and 5-1 Ivy League, moved into first place in the league standings with the victory and will look to stay ahead of the pack as they play at Yale on January 28. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Hosting Dartmouth last Saturday afternoon, the Princeton University men’s basketball team found itself in a desperate situation, trailing the Big Green 76-72 with 1:10 left in regulation.

But with Jadwin Gym in an uproar, Princeton freshman forward Caden Pierce’s thoughts turned to a message hammered home by Tiger head coach Mitch Henderson.

“Coach always says, no matter what the score is, we are always winning the game so I felt like that is what we needed to do,” said Pierce.

Taking those words to heart, Pierce made a steal, flung the ball to Tosan Evbuomwan who set up a three-pointer by Matt Allocco.

“I needed to step up and make a play down the stretch to help the team win,” said Pierce.

Pierce’s clutch play set the tone as Princeton knotted the game at 76-76 to force overtime and then pulled out a 93-90 win as it improved to 14-5 overall and 5-1 Ivy League. more

RAU TALENT: Princeton University men’s swimmer Raunak Khosla displays his breaststroke form. Senior star Khosla has produced a historic career at Princeton as a two-time Ivy League Championships High Point Swimmer of the Meet (2020, 2022); an Honorable Mention All-American in the 200 butterfly, 200 individual medley, and 400 IM in 2022, holding the school record in those three events; and the seventh-place finisher in the 200 IM at the Phillips 66 National Championships last summer. In upcoming action, Khosla and the Tigers will be wrapping up regular season action by facing Harvard and Yale on January 27-28 at Blodgett Pool in Cambridge, Mass. (Photo provided by Princeton Athletics)

By Bill Alden

For Raunak Khosla, getting injured as a grade schooler resulted in him taking the plunge into swimming.

“I ended up breaking my arm when I was in third grade and the only sport I could do was swimming,” said Khosla, a native of Roswell, Ga., noting that he was fitted with a waterproof cast which allowed him to swim with the injury. “I got into that for a while and eventually I chose to swim year-round, and the rest is history.”

Coming north to attend Princeton University in 2018 and joining its men’s swimming and diving team, Khosla has made a lot of history for the Tigers.

Among his many achievements, Khosla is a two-time Ivy League Championships High Point Swimmer of the Meet (2020, 2022); an Honorable Mention All-American in the 200 butterfly, 200 individual medley, and 400 IM in 2022, holding the school record in those three events; and the seventh-place finisher in the 200 IM at the Phillips 66 National Championships last summer.

While Khosla had other athletic interests, the idea that being dedicated to swimming would yield success drew him to the sport. 

“I wouldn’t say I was as successful in swimming as I was in different sports,” said Khosla, who also played football and lacrosse. “I really liked the aspect that you get what you put into it in terms of as hard as you work, you are going to see some results. Especially at a young age, it was easy to see that if I worked really hard I would get good results, and that was something that got me into it.” more

ON THE RIGHT TRACK: Princeton University men’s hockey player Pito Walton heads up the ice in recent action. Last Saturday, senior star defenseman and captain Walton scored a goal in a losing cause as Princeton fell 3-2 at No. 16 Cornell. The Tigers, now 10-11 overall and 6-9 ECAC Hockey, host LIU on January 28 in their last non-conference game of the regular season. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

It was a roller coaster week for the Princeton University men’s hockey team as it faced a trio of formidable foes.

Starting the week on a high note, Princeton edged No. 12 Providence 3-2 in overtime on January 17. Three days later, the Tigers stumbled in a 5-0 loss at Colgate. Displaying resilience, Princeton showed some fire a night later at No. 16 Cornell, battling back from 1-0 and 2-1 deficits before falling 3-2.

Princeton head coach Ron Fogarty, whose team is now 10-11 overall and 6-9 ECAC Hockey, is proud of the progress his team had made after struggling into early stages of the campaign.

“We started 2-6 and we are just a game below .500 now,” said Fogarty. “Our goal is to have a winning season and that is attainable. Now we have faced every team on our schedule once and we know what to expect. We just have to play at our standard.”

The Tigers have raised their standard through daily diligence. “It is just the individual development, there is a lot of repetition at practice with our drills,” said Fogarty, reflecting on his team’s improvement. “Staying with the same core of drills at practice, you see that skillset and they are bringing it to the game.” more

CRUNCH TIME: Princeton High girls’ basketball player Anna Winters, center, battles two Princeton Day School players for the ball in a game earlier this season. Last week, freshman star Winters scored 19 points to help PHS defeat Hopewell Valley 60-38 as Tiger head coach Dave Kosa earned his 300th career victory. PHS, who fell 37-26 to Robbinsville last Friday to move to 7-7, hosts WW/P-South on January 27 and Allentown on January 31. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Anna Winters and her teammates on the Princeton High girls’ basketball team had some extra inspiration to come through with a win as they hosted Hopewell Valley last week.

“We were really aggressive today,” said PHS freshman forward Winters. “I think we all had the mentality that we wanted coach (Dave Kosa) to get his 300th win.”

Displaying that aggressive mindset, the Tigers jumped out to a 31-21 halftime lead over the Bulldogs in the January 17 contest.

“We worked as a team and we played really good today,” said Winters. “We knew they were going to be tall and we don’t have a lot of height on our team. It was fun to play them.”

The Tigers had a lot of fun in the second half, pulling away to a 60-38 triumph, giving Kosa his 300th win and triggering a touching postgame celebration with cake, balloons, and posing for team pictures with their beaming coach.

“Coach is one of my favorite coaches that I have had,” said Winters. “I know it meant a lot to him to get the 300th win.”

The win meant a lot to the players as they are trying to improve their postseason seeding.

“We all felt like we have got to win this; we have got to get the power points,” said Winters.

In the win over HoVal, Winters was a powerful force, scoring 19 points, repeatedly driving to the hoop.

“I was feeling good today, I took it to the rim a lot,” said Winters, who also had six rebounds and three assists against the Bulldogs. “This was definitely one of my good games. I didn’t take as many outside shots, a lot of my points were from layups.”

That relentless play has been a staple of Winters’s game for years. more

OFF AND RUNNING: Princeton High boys’ track star Ben Gitai, center, takes off in the Mercer County Championships last Sunday at The Bubble in Toms River. Gitai took fourth in the race, helping the PHS boys place seventh in the team standings at the meet. (Photo by Nick Niforatos, provided courtesy of Ben Samara)

By Justin Feil

Izzy Ospina Posada always considered discus her best throwing event, but significant improvement in the shot put this winter had her dreaming big.

The Princeton High junior threw a personal record 33’10½ to win the girls’ shot put by just over three inches at the Mercer County Indoor Championships at The Bubble in Toms River on Sunday.

“It just doesn’t feel real,” said Ospina Posada. “I thought I got second place. Finding out I got first place was amazing. It’s an amazing feeling to win. I’m really proud of myself. It’s amazing.”

Ospina Posada was 10th in the same event at last year’s county meet and never threw over 30 feet in that season. This year, she’s thrown at least 31’7½ in each of four meets and twice thrown over 33 feet now, something she credits to throws coach Brandon Williams.

“Coach Williams became in charge of the winter throws this year and it just completely turned me around because he taught me how to put on good form,” said Ospina Posada. “I was always told, ‘great form,’ but coach Williams corrected it and that’s what got me throwing higher numbers. And we always are in the gym dead lifting and working out really hard. He posts workouts that have shown a lot of progression for all of my teammates.”

Ospina Posada was the lone girl champion for PHS as the squad placed sixth in the team standings at the meet. On the boys’ side, Charlie Howes won the 800 meters in 2:04.40. The senior ran more than two seconds faster than his closest competitor to uphold distance coach Jim Smirk’s prediction. more

SCOOP AND HOOP: Hun School girls’ basketball player Amira Pinkett heads past two defenders for a layup in a game earlier this season. Last Friday, sophomore star Pinkett had 15 points, 10 rebounds, and four blocked shots to help Hun defeat Lawrenceville 58-35. The Raiders, who improved to 8-8 with the win, host Blair Academy on January 25 and the Hill School (Pa.) on January 28 before playing at St. Benedict’s on January 30. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Amira Pinkett is making up for lost time this winter in her sophomore season for the Hun School girls’ basketball team.

“I dislocated my shoulder last year so I missed half the season; I missed the playoffs and everything,” said guard/forward Pinkett. “This year I wanted to come out and do what I couldn’t do last year. I improved over the summer.”

Last Thursday as Hun hosted Lawrenceville, Pinkett showed what she could do, scoring 15 points with 10 rebounds and four blocked shots, helping the Raiders rout the Big Red 58-35.

Employing a stifling pressure defense, Hun jumped out to a 15-2 lead by the end of the first quarter and led 32-8 at halftime on the way to a 58-35 win as it improved to 8-8.

“I think the biggest part of it was our energy coming into this game,” said Pinkett. “We played Peddie on Wednesday — that was a solid win (61-25), and now with Lawrenceville we had to focus. We knew we had to come out and bury the team in the beginning so we wanted to come out with intensity, hands up and contesting shots.”

Pinkett hit plenty of shots, scoring eight points in the last four minutes of the second quarter, hitting jumpers and going end to end with a steal and finishing with a left-handed scoop layup.

“I try to be a big guard because I am 6’1; I try to have ballhandling skills, shoot the basketball and also be able to do post moves,” said Pinkett. “I try to do a little bit of everything. I can be a guard when the team needs me to be but a center when they need me to be.” more

January 18, 2023

Friends of Princeton Open Space hosted volunteers at the Mountain Lakes Preserve on Monday for nature projects, including removing invasive species, in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Participants share why they chose the event as their MLK Day of Service project in this week’s Town Talk on page 6. (Photo by Weronika A. Plohn)


By Anne Levin

With new 64-gallon carts scheduled to be delivered to Princeton residents over the next few weeks in preparation for the town’s revamped trash collection program, homeowners have the choice of tossing their old containers or holding on to them for other uses. Sustainability advocates and municipal staff are hoping people opt for the latter.

Turning the old carts into composters, rain barrels, or containers to store leaves for compost are a few of the suggestions on offer. “We know this is not going to work for every person. But we want to extend the useful life of whatever bins or carts people have,” said Christine Symington, executive director of Sustainable Princeton. “Part of the waste reduction hierarchy is that you want to reuse things. Our team, in coordination with [municipal engineer] Deanna Stockton, has come up with a bunch of different ideas.”

The goal was to find creative options that are not overly complicated. “There are several things you can do,” said Symington. “And we’re planning on holding some workshops in the spring, and perhaps later in the year, where folks can bring their old containers in and we can help facilitate turning them into other uses.”

The new trash collection system is scheduled to begin February 1. Bulk waste will no longer be collected with regular trash after that date. Pickup of bulk items will be on Wednesdays, by reservation (email wasteinfo@princetonnj.gov). Collection of organics is still being explored.

The new carts, which save labor by the use of robotic arms, are being assembled on the campus of Princeton Theological Seminary, and will be delivered to residents by the hauler. Each cart is equipped with a chip linking it to a specific address. Residents who feel they need more than one cart can order one, which may require a fee. Those who want a smaller receptacle can request a 32-gallon model, and swaps will be done in March. more