February 2010 Archives

Possible Abduction on Durham Avenue Thwarted

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On Thursday at 2:45PM, a Branchburg woman escaped a possible abduction at a Durham Avenue office building (they weren't specific in the story but there aren't that many to choose from). Here's the story . . .

Second Annual Fuce 5K Family Fun Run/Walk

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From fuce5.com:

     After an enormously fun and successful inaugural event, the Fuce 5K is back for another year of activity in downtown Metuchen!
     We again look to provide an experience for Metuchen families and friends of Metuchen to exercise together and raise money for residents in need.  The race is dedicated to the memory of Mike Fuccile who epitomized being active as a father and member of the Metuchen community.
     The race will be held on Saturday, June 19th, 2010 beginning at 8:30AM in the Pearl Street parking lot in downtown Metuchen.  You can register the same day from 7:00 - 8:00AM. or by completing an online registration here.
Click here For more information on Mike and the Fuce 5K.


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Due to inclement weather conditions, all Metuchen schools & the Board of Education will be closed tomorrow, February 26th.


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Edgar Middle School  12:15 p.m.


Metuchen High School  1:00 p.m


Campbell School  12:40 p.m.


Moss AM Kindergarten 10:20 a.m.; Moss PM Kindergarten Cancelled


AM MIPP  10:20 a.m.; PM MIPP Cancelled


AM Resource Room Cancelled

Storm Warnings:

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Thumbnail image for attachOEM logo.jpgFrom the Metuchen Office of Emergency Management:

The Metuchen area is forecast to receive significant accumulations of snow, sleet and ice in this storm.

  • Please stay off the roads unless travel is necessary.
  • Keep cars in the driveways and off the street to allow plowing by DPW.
  • Do not put snow from your property into the public street.
  • Check on elderly and disabled neighbors.
  • Clear sidewalks and nearby hydrants as soon as possible.
  • Dress for conditions. Don't over do it.
  • Plan for power failures. Be careful with candles and space heaters.
  • To report an emergency Dial 911.

Tim Burton Film Fest at the Library Sunday Feb 28th

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MV5BMTk1ODI1ODMwOV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTYwMTE0NzY3__V1__CR79,0,316,316_SS80_.jpgThe Teen Advisory Board of the Metuchen Public Library presents a TIM BURTON film festival, featuring some of the finest work from the highly-creative and award-winning director beginning with the poignant EDWARD SCISSORHANDS starring the great Johnny Depp on Sunday, February 28 at 2 PM. http://www.metuchennj.org/tim_burton_film_festival.html

The blizzard certainly hit our town hard and more wintry weather is expected this week. The Mayor, on behalf of the DPW, made a pronouncement (actually, it was more like a plea) at the last Borough Council meeting asking for cars to be parked in driveways, parking lots and on lawns, if necessary, to keep them off the streets when the DPW has to do serious snow plowing. The maintenance of our streets as well as the convenience of all of our neighbors in having access to a clean street during bad weather are important factors to keep in mind when we're all trying to keep our lives going when Mother Nature gets on her high horse! If you have any questions about where you should park your vehicles, address them to the Mayor's office or Fred at the DPW.

Local Restaurants Offer Discounts for Haiti Relief Ticketholders

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Anna Walker of the Haiti Relief Committee sent us the names of the following Metuchen restaurants who will be honoring discounts for ticketholders of the British Invasion chairty event at the Forum Saturday night. Some of them have included gift certificates that will be raffled off at the event as well. The Committee thanks the business community for getting behind the event and helping to make it a big success! So grab a ticket and have a great night out at one of these great Metuchen dining spots:

Metuchen Inn- 15% off  

What's The Scoop- 10% off

Il Torino- 10% off

Cafe Paris- 10% off

Hailey's Harp & Pub- 10% off

Meiying's- 10% off

Trattoria- 10% off  (w/$40 minimum) 

Earthsongs Presents Lenten Meditation in Clay Workshop

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LentenFigure.jpgEarthsongs, led by Linda Vollerschmidt-LaStella, offers a special workshop, called Lenten Meditations in Clay. This workshop will give participans an opportunity to reflect on their experiences of the Lenten season through the medium of clay. The Way of the Cross and other traditional practices of the Christian journey will be referenced and connected to parables and rituals in other cultures and religions. The process will include Raku firing of the two concrete images of each participant's personal prayer experience created in the ditation and workshop.

Persons of all faith traditions are welcome. The basis for the workshop is, however, the Christian season of Lent. A donation of $20 is suggested to cover the cost of materials and firing.

The workshop will take place at Earthsongs Studio at 242 Amboy Avenue, Metuchen, in two sessions, March 10 & March 17, 7-9:30PM.

Have you ever wondered what it's like to be a police officer?

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If you are interested in learning about law enforcement, the Metuchen Police Department provides an opportunity to become familiar with day-to-day police operations.
The CITIZEN POLICE ACADEMY, a 13-week program for Borough residents will begin on March 1st at 6:30pm at Borough Hall. Classes will be held every Monday night.
This interactive program is designed to educate about department procedures, guidelines, and responsibilities, as well as the demands of personnel that guide decision-making. Some of the topics that will be covered include: An overview of the Department's organization and structure, recruitment and training, and the roles and responsibilities of the various divisions and sections. In addition, participants will be given an opportunity to ride-along with a patrol officer and experience a firearms training simulation.

tonerybswimjpg-69b403e0b4fa2a9a_large.jpgCongratulations to Shane Tonery, St. Joseph's/Metuchen, Junior, IM/breaststroke, 5-8, 160


Tonery became the sixth St. Joseph swimmer in the last 10 years to earn two individual titles and led his team to its 32nd straight team title at the Greater Middlesex Conference Championships last week at North Brunswick. Tonery split 25.15 for the butterfly leg of the first-place 200-yard medley relay (1:43.09), won the 200 individual medley in 2:01.91 and the 100 breaststroke in 1:02.82, and split 50.84 anchoring the first-place 400 freestyle relay (3:25.45).

Rabies in Metuchen - Please be Aware

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attachOEM logo.jpgFrom the Office of Emergency Management:

The Home News Tribune is reporting in today's paper that a rabid raccoon was captured near Central Ave.and Aylin St. on February 12. Metuchen residents should report unusual animal behavior to the police at 732-632-8500.  Avoid contact with wild or stray animals. All cats and dogs must have up to date vaccinations. Seek medical attention and report all animal bites. 

James Graziano, Borough of Metuchen, Office of Emergency Management 


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From Moss School:


Children who will have reached the age of 5 by October 1, 2010 are eligible to enter kindergarten at Moss School.Kindergarten registration will take place in the gym at Moss School, 16 Simpson Place, on the following dates


Families with last names beginning with:


A, B, C:         Monday, February 22,  9:00-11:00AM

D, E, F:         Monday, February 22,  12:30-   2:30PM

G, H, I, J:       Tuesday, February 23,  9:00-11:00AM

K, L, M:         Tuesday, February 23,  12:30-   2:30PM  

N, O, P:        Wednesday, February 24, 9:00-11:00AM

Q, R, S:        Wednesday, February 24, 12:30- 2:30PM   

T, U, V:         Thursday, February 25, 9:00-11:00AM

W, X, Y, Z:    Thursday, February 25, 12:30- 2:30PM


If you cannot make the assigned registration time, please call the office at 732-321-8700, ext. 1000 to reschedule.

Our Facebook Friends Suggest . . . A Raised Court in Olmezer Park?


On our Facebook page, we got the following suggestion:

Katy Smith Hreha I think we need a racquetball or paddleball court in Metuchen--maybe at Olmeizer park. What do you think? Wouldn't that be nice? Nobody has a raised court in the area--I think we'd really stand out.

What do you think? A raised court is something that the town could use. What would it cost? Who would use it? How would usage be administered? If you're a builder, a town councilperson, or a "playground consultant," we want to hear from you ! How does an idea become a reality around here?

Interested in a Farm Share? Check out this CSA

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This information was forwarded to us by a reader. If you are interested, please follow the instructions below:

Thank you for your interest in the Metuchen CSA, registration for our 2010 season is about to begin!  Attached to this letter is our information (on the next page)  and application (  csa-member-application.doc).  If you have any trouble opening the attachments or have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us: 732-321-0365, traceygelber@optonline.net. Some of the main points of information:

There IS School Tomorrow

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Just a reminder:  Due to the snow days of last week, there WILL be school tomorrow in all district schools, February 16th, which had originally been on the calendar as a day off. 

Happy President's Day

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Presidents day.jpeg'Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.


Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that that nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this.


But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate -- we can not consecrate -- we can not hallow -- this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced.


It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us -- that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion -- that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.'  

                                                               - Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address

St. Luke's and Forum HELP! Haiti with Relief Concert


british invasion poster.jpgSt. Luke's Church is sponsoring an amazing benefit concert at the Forum by The British Invasion Tribute to benefit Haiti on Saturday, Feb.27th.   Several Metuchen restaurants will be offering pre-concert discounts on dinner to ticket holders. Read on for information about the band and its members.

The outreach for Haiti will be ongoing at St. Luke's, and a series of benefits are being planned. Already a group of local artists have responded to a call to donate work for an "Arts for Haiti" event.  The details of that will be advertised in a few months.  Any other artists who would be interested in getting involved in that can contact CLAYSONGS@aol.com.

The Forum Presents Oscar Nominee THE HURT LOCKER This Weekend

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The Forum Theatre presents one of the most highly acclaimed films of the year. Nominated for 9 Academy Awards including Best Picture, Best Actor (Jeremy Renner) and Best Director (Katherine Bigelow), THE HURT LOCKER plays this weekend.

Showtimes will be Friday and Saturday at 5:30 and 8PM and Sunday at 4:30 and 7PM.
All seats $8 -- this film is rated R with a running time of 2hr and 7min. Catch up on this Oscar nominee before the big show! Click on the ad to the left for more information!

Metuchen High Students Meet Working Artists For Career Talk

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Metuchen's own Cartoon Goddess Lauren Rabinowitz gave us the scoop on the recent Careers in the Arts events at the Metuchen High School. This is what she said:


The event (to the best of my knowledge) was organized by Joyce 
Browning, Mary Lou Roma, Linda Graf and Judi Cheung.

There were 5 presenters :

David Glasofer  - Photographer, Image Up Studio 
Ed Wetzel - Fine Artist

Patrick Woodruff - senior at SVA
Christine Priola - muralist and painter

We were each stationed in different locations (library, auditorium, 
art room). Five groups of art students came to see each presenter 
speak for about 15 minutes about life as an artist/creative.

District Closes All Metuchen Schools Thursday February 11

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All Metuchen schools will be closed tomorrow, Thursday, Feburary 11th, due to this second winter storm that is hitting our area. Be careful out there, people! Happy President's Day holiday!

Calling All Artists! Share Your Creativity With Junebug--Sign Up Now!

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IMG_2662.jpgThe Third Annual Junebug Arts Festival is looking for artists, of any kind, to participate in programs for this year's event, which runs Fridays during the month of June. Writers, painters, actors, singers, dancers, musicians, fine artists and performing artists of all kinds, sign up now!

Plans for Old McDonough Dodge Site to be Discussed


The upcoming Zoning Board hearing (Thursday, 2/11 @8pm) is scheduled to hear the from Suburban Square, LLC regarding variance requests for development of the old McDonough Dodge site


The applicant is seeking major site plan, use variance and bulk variance approval for retail, restaurant and 33 one-bedroom apartments.


Any interested parties should plan to attend.  


Central Avenue Block 82/Lots 1.01, 2.01, 8, 16.01 Zone B-4;  Block 83/Lots 1-8, 9.01, 9.02, 28, 29


Resume Writing for Teens Offered at the Library

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On February 21, at 2PM, the library will offer teens an opportunity to work on creating a resume that aptly represents their work and life experience to prospective employers. "A Snapshot of You" will also examine the various ways students can go about getting more work experience throughout their high school years, as well as what the important components of a valid, workable resume are. The participants will work in small groups to create their own personal resume. (Space is limited to 16 participants. Parents are welcome to attend with the students) Call Kathy Liss at 732-632-8526 or emailing her at KLiss@Lmxac.org.

2010 Director of the Gallery @ The Rotunda Named

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Mike Bransfield, Metuchen artist and resident, begins the 2010 season as director of The Gallery at The Rotunda, Metuchen Borough Hall.  He takes over the position from the pioneering director, ceramicist and June Bug Arts maven, Linda LaStella.  The Cultural Arts Commission is proud to present the second season of visual arts exhibits at the Rotunda Gallery.

Local artists were invited to submit images of their work for consideration by the Committee, which includes Amy Brooks, Preeti Singh, and Kimberly Adlerman along with Bransfield and LaStella.  The Committee selected several of those artists to fill the gallery in four scheduled shows to take place throughout the year.

"The Rotunda Gallery provides a unique opportunity for local artists to show their work, and is another way that Metuchen is providing support to the arts.  I am very proud to be part of the continued growth of The Rotunda Gallery and happy to see the arts scene in Metuchen branch out to include more venues," said Bransfield. All are invited to attend opening receptions for each Rotunda show with dates and times to be announced.

Toys R Us Running 25% off Sale if You Recycle Old Baby Equipment

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Thanks to a faithful reader and recycler extraordinaire comes this information regarding a trade-in at Toys R Us running until the 20th of February. Trade in your old baby equipment and get new equipment for 25% off--the older items will be taken away and recycled by the store. Check out this link for more information.

Notice Regarding the Upcoming Storm Warning

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From the Office of Emergency Management

The National Weather Service has issued a winter storm warning for our region. The warning is in effect from 4 pm Tuesday until midnight Wednesday. A winter storm warning means that severe winter weather and significant snow accumulations are imminent. 
  • Please stay off the roads.
  • If at all possible, move your cars off the street so DPW can plow. 
  • Clear your sidewalks as soon as possible after the storm. Dress for conditions and do not over do it. 
  • Do NOT remove snow from your property to the public street. 
  • Please clear nearby fire hydrants.
  • Check on elderly and disabled neighbors. 
  • Prepare for power failures. Be extremely careful with candles and space heaters. 
  • To report an emergency call 911.  
Stay tuned to local media for storm updates. 
James Graziano
Borough of Metuchen 
Office of Emergency Management

(732) 632-8500 Police Dispatch

D.P.W., What's The Poop On Poop?


A recent inquiry from a reader reads as follows:

"Do you know what the town's ordinance on dog's waste? I always walk around town and I've noticed the dogs' waste on the sidewalks and streets. I've put out a sign at my child's bus stop since there are always a new pile everyday. It is a beautiful town but it's not a very clean one. I tried calling the town about this and I was told that unless they know who does it then nothing can be done.I hope you can find a way to solve this problem. "
Is there any way to ensure that every dog owner is doing their part to allay the problem? Why is ticketing not done for this offense, something done in other boroughs and cities? Any information a reader or town worker has to impart to us would be gratefully acknowledged.

Transatlantic Jam Cam at Raconteur Sunday

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From the Raconteur:

11 AM, Sun. February 7

Live Music

The shop's "jam session" runs concurrent with a very similar session occurring in Reading, England at a pub called The Retreat. Participants alternate, collaborate, and symphonize via a Google web cam. Web Cam Jam is more about the performers than the performance, but that doesn't you can't come in watch. Raconteur musicians drink coffee and play in the rear of the shop. Retreat musicians quaff pints (morning here, Happy Hour there) and are projected onto a movie screen behind local performers. All instruments welcome. NOTE: Last year Oscar winner Kate Winslet mentioned this very same pub and the pickling contest her mother had  won there.Last February the Web Cam Jam caught Kate's mom, Sally Winslet (now known as the Queen of Shallots), in the foreground eating bangers and in last April's Mr. Winslet sang the old broadside "Darlin' Old Stick."

Everything Cancelled Due to Snow

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The borough has cancelled all town activities for today, February 6, thanks to the continuing snow advisory we have been under since last night. Grab your sleds and head to Tommy's Pond instead and enjoy this really pretty wintry day.

Be a "Friend" to the Junebug Festival on Facebook

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n272359724196_3299.jpgThe Junebug Festival committee, with the help of Cartoon Goddess Lauren Rabinowitz, has created a Facebook page that you can join--it's a great way to keep on top of the plans. It's only five months away and fun and fantastic ideas are entering the planning stages so if you're interested in helping out, be a "friend" and click here. (Yes, you have to join Facebook in order to do this but, we promise, it won't hurt!)

Skateboard Park/Space Discussed at Borough Council Meeting

An enthusiastic debate sprung up during the first part of the Borough Council meeting on Monday regarding setting off some of the downtown parking lots on the weekends for skateboarders.Mayor Tom Vahalla was very much opposed to that suggestion.  Councilman Christopher Morrisson and Councilman Justin Manley both opted in favor of the idea, stating that the increased insurance costs would be minimal. Borough Attorney David Frizell reiterated the litigious nature of creating and supporting such a space for the borough. Given that hundreds of kids use our streets and parking lots and driveways for impromptu skating and biking events, it might behoove the Boroug to give the idea a thorough examination. Councilman Pete Cammarano agreed that there are already lots of kids, including his own, who are making use of available space to practice skateboarding now and that the idea should be returned to at some other time when the actual legal implications of such a park are determined. In the meantime, the Mayor offered that Edison now has a separate skateboard facillity that Metuchen kids can enjoy, as long as they can get a ride there.
If you're looking for an alternative to the "big game"on Sunday, here's a stylish alternative--Fashion innovator Tom Ford brings his artistic touch to the tale of a man who loses his partner and moves through what may turn out to be the final day of his life in A SINGLE MAN. Colin Firth (PRIDE AND PREJUDICE, BRIDGET JONES) plays the provocative part with warmth and depth in this sad, funny, joyful and mournful tale of love and loss, courting Oscar along the way (Firth is nominated for a best actor statue). Watch the really posh trailer below and then check out the film this weekend at the Forum. (Next week catch the heavily-nominated THE HURT LOCKER, directed by Kathryn Bigelow, who has a shot at being the first woman to ever win an Oscar for directing!)

The Metuchen Area Chamber of Commerce is proud to announce the David E. Tutrone Memorial Scholarship (sponsored in part by the Franco Manufacturing Company) to be awarded to a student who is a Metuchen High School or St. Joseph High School senior pursuing higher education in the fall.  Although GPA will be taken into consideration, the emphasis of the scholarship is on community service and volunteerism.

Marqus Blakeley Received NJ Sportswriters Award Saturday

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bildemarqus.jpgUniversity of Vermont basketball superstar Marqus Blakeley came home to New Jersey to receive the New Jersey Sports Writers' Association for College Men's Basketball Player of the Year. The Metuchen native was ecstatic and a very grateful recipient of the prestigious award. Here are the details. Congratulations, Marqus!

From the Forum Theater Arts Center:

The Forum Theatre Arts Center announces spring line-up for Family and educational programming! It's a welcome sight to see children pouring off school buses and into Metuchen's historic Forum Theatre.  For many children, this will be their first live-theatre experience and certainly a memorable one.  After a two-year hiatus, A Kids Forum - the professional theatre for young audiences division of the theater, has re-opened, presenting  top-notch, professional theatre to young audiences and adults.

The Forum's newest legacy, Stars on Stage, kicked off this fall with a sell-out production of ANNIE.  Stars On Stage, continues this spring offering budding performers their chance in the spotlight.  The non-profit institution is offering classes in acting, dance, scene study, screen writing, film making, stand-up comedy, musical theatre and music. First-rate professionals and experienced educators will be teaching students as young as age three in a fun and positive environment. And EVERY STUDENT will get their time to shine on the Forum Theatre Stage in front of an audience.

YMCA Celebrates Early Childhood Care Anniversary

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From the Metuchen Edison Woodbridge YMCA:

It is with great excitement that the Metuchen Edison Woodbridge YMCA celebrates the 20th anniversary of early childhood care service to the community. Early childhood care is an important component in the mix of services provided by the Metuchen Edison Woodbridge YMCA. In many ways it serves as the foundation of the work provided to children and families in our community. The YMCA's first Early Childhood Center opened on January 2, 1990. Named the Edgar Child Care Center, this facility is run in association with the Reformed Church of Metuchen on Lake Avenue and is located across the street from the Metuchen Branch YMCA. This site was the first off-site child care center run by the YMCA and began with only four staff six children.


Over the last 20 years, this off-site model has been replicated throughout the YMCA's service area and today encompasses twelve programs operating in four towns serving over 500 children a day while employing over 125 staff members.

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