January 2012 Archives

Be Part of the Citizen Police Brigade!

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Schoolhouse Rock Live! At Stars on Stage Starting February 8th

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Due to the release of the motion picture Beauty and The Beast we have decided to will present  School House Rock Live! for our Winter/Spring Stars On Stage  Program. This will give students more of an opportunity to shine instead of focusing on a musical driven by 2 characters.  

Begins February 6

Stars On Stage Musical Theatre Program
Kids work in a fun,up-beat and supportive atmosphere. Students are trained in everything from auditioning to performance!
You can still register by emailing peter@forumtheatrearts.org or come to the 1st class on February 6 and register then
Performances are May 11,12,13

You can also register by emailing peter@forumtheatrearts.org or call 732.548.5600 and leave a message.
Tuition is $475.00 for the 12 week program or...
If paid in full on or before February 6 Tuition is $450.00
No previous experience is necessary only the desire to learn all aspects of musical theatre.
The program also enables children to use their imagination, creativity and personalities to bring the characters to life. We also emphasize self esteem, camaraderie and working with other kids as an ensemble.

Campbell School Collecting Box Tops Until February 24th

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From Campbell School:

The Spring BoxTop Collection begins at Campbell on January 30th and runs until February 24th. If you don't have a Campbell student in your family, surely you have a neighbor child who would love to have yours. Each BoxTop is worth 10 cents, but they add up fast. Campbell School raised over $2,200 in the fall contest, and hopes to exceed that in the Spring.

World Wide Wrap Sponsored by Neve Shalom's Men's Club February 5

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Join Neve Shalom's Men's Club as we celebrate WORLD WIDE WRAP XII - FEBRUARY 5, 2012. Celebrate the mitzvah of Tefillin with us. Learn about the uniquely Jewish Ritual. If it has been a long time since you have layn Tefillin OR If you have ever wanted to learn about Tefillin - JOIN US. We will be available to teach you. If you need to borrow a set, call and we will arrange it. Our Hai and Daled classes will be showing off their homemade Tefillin. Program begins at 8:15am - Services start at 9:00am Bagel and Lox breakfast to follow.  Admission is Free...All are welcome. Please RSVP so we know how much food to buy. For information, contact Stu Mantel (sr.mantel@gmail.com)

American Teacher Screening at Forum January 28th

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From the Metuchen Arts Council:

The Raconteur, The Forum Theatre, and The Metuchen Arts Council will present an evening with Oscar winning filmmaker Vanessa Roth that includes a screening and discussion of her powerful new documentary American Teacher on Saturday, January 28th at 8:00 p.m. at the Forum Theatre in Metuchen.

American Teacher is a heartbreaking study of what it's like to teach in America today. The film reveals the frustrating realities of today's educators, the difficulty of attracting talented new teachers, and why so many of our best teachers feel forced to leave the profession altogether.

Co-produced by Dave Eggers and Ninive Calegari and narrated by Matt Damon, American Teacher is, according to the Washington Post, "a film about education that gets it exactly right," and raising what Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan calls, "important questions about American teachers," and sparking " a much needed conversation." The Los Angeles Times says the film "ought to be seen by anyone concerned about the fate of the public school system, and the nation as a

whole."The screening will be followed by an on stage discussion between the director Vanessa Roth and select New Jersey educators with opportunity for questions from the audience.

Metuchen Native Robert Hegyes Dies at 60 Today

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RobertHegyes_150.jpgMetuchen native Robert Hegyes, who played Juan Epstein on WELCOME BACK, KOTTER, died today at his home in town -- he was 60 years old. For further information, read the story on this link.

Edgar Math Team Places Well in Math Competition

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Edgar Middle School of Metuchen placed third in the sixth annual St. Joseph High School math competition which took place on Saturday, January 14th. Thirty-two public and private schools from the surrounding areas were represented. Members of the Edgar team included thirteen seventh and eighth grade students. The team is coached by teachers Laura McCadden and Sandy Vorensky.

Family Friends Playgroup Invites You to Open House at St. Luke's

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From Family Friends:

Feeling stuck inside this winter with a little one anxious to learn and play?  Want to get out yourself and meet other new parents?  Looking for a safe & inexpensive way to help your little one socialize before entering pre-school or Kindergarten?  Then check out Family Friends at our February Open House on Monday, February 6 and Wednesday, February 8 from (10 a.m. to 12 p.m. both days) at St. Luke's Fryer Hall, 17 Oak Avenue, Metuchen.  Watch your little ones play while you meet the other parents over coffee and a muffin.  We'll have membership information on hand and can answer any questions.

Family Friends is unique...

  • Playgroups are held in the same common, neutral space twice a week, allowing children to focus on interactive play and socialization without the distraction of a new or over-stimulating environment.
  • We are a non-profit, 100% volunteer-run organization, which keeps membership fees low (only $80 per family each year!) and parents/caregivers involved.
  • We are non-sectarian and welcome a diverse range of members from all cultures, religions, denominations, ethnicities, and backgrounds; we reflect the society our children are entering.

Neve Shalom Open House Next Week

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CQE Sponsors StoryTime at Campbell School

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Storytime_1.13.12_046.jpgFrom Maria Pan:

On Friday, January 13, this year's first scheduled CQE Story Time took place at Campbell School.  CQE Story Time is a program that brings together members from our Metuchen community to read a favorite book to first and second graders at Campbell School.   In its 13th year, CQE Story Time is a long standing program sponsored by the Citizens for Quality Education (who also sponsor CQE/MHS Alumni College Day) and is loved by students and the volunteers who have had a chance to participate in it. 


Thirty readers came in to share their love of reading with our students on January 13.  Parents and grandparents were joined by Metuchen Superintendent of Schools Vincent Caputo, Metuchen Police Officer Kenneth Bauer, Preschool of Rock's Michael Napolitano, Board of Education member Jackie Gibson, Dr. Peter Freis, Dr. Judith Bland, Dr. Frank Heelan and other members of our community.  The children had a wonderful experience listening to the readers but as important was the opportunity CQE Story Time gave them to meet members of their community and see volunteering at work within their classroom.   There are 2 more CQE Story Times scheduled for the 2011 - 2012 school year:  February 10 and March 2.


You will find additional information about the CQE and its programs, including CQE Story Time, at  http://www.metuchencqe.org/.


Golden Globe Winner HUGO This Weekend at the Forum

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This Weekend On Our screen:
Golden Globe  Best Director - Motion Picture
Martin Scorsese 

Throughout his extraordinary career, Academy Award-wining director Martin Scorsese has brought his unique vision and dazzling gifts to life in a series of unforgettable films. Now the legendary storyteller invites you to join him on a thrilling journey to a magical world based on Brian Selznick's award-winning, imaginative New York Times best-seller, "The Invention of Hugo Cabret." Hugo is the astonishing adventure of a wily and resourceful boy whose quest to unlock a secret left to him by his father will transform Hugo and all those around him, including a famous film innovator whose best days were thought to be behind him.

MM says, "4 STARS! This movie is a complete and utter marvel -- and, if you love art and believe that life isn't worth living without it, you will REALLY enjoy this film! Scorsese's not-so-veiled attempt at making a movie about the importance of film preservation is built into a story that will stir your heart and soul. A beautiful achievement. A must see for all ages!"

Friday 7:30 Saturday 5 & 7:30 Sunday at 2 & 4:30pm
Running Time 2hr 6m Rated PG

Classes Start February 6
Registration will be on Monday January 23 and Monday January 30 from 5:30 to 7pm. If you can't make those dates you can always register by emailing Peter Loewy at peter@forumtheatrearts.org or call the theatre at 732.548.5600 and leave a message.

Kids On Stage Fall Program presents:

Disney's Beauty and The Beast Jr.
A Musical

Classes are for students from 8 to 14 years of age. No experience nessesary, only a desire to learn! Tuition is $475 for the 12 week program and $450 if paid in full by February 6. Payment plans are also available..
Performances are May 11,12,13 2012 On The Forum Stage!
For further info please visit our website at www.forumtheatrearts.org

Registration is limited so please let us know if you are interested in registering by sending us an email at peter@forumtheatrearts.org. Classes will either be on Mondays from 4:30 to 6:30. Rehearsals will be added after the first 6 weeks. Parents will know well in advance of all added rehearsals 

Introduce your children to the world of musical theater! The FTAC's Performing Arts School program, Stars on Stage, offers children a valuable experience in both theater arts and music. Children will develop singing, dancing and drama skills for a public performance held at the Forum Theatre at the end of each class series. (Please note: We offer a generous multiple class discount - sign up for more than one class OR sign up more than one child and save 15% on each additional class.)

Historical Society presents 22nd Local History Day Feb 12th

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From the Historical Society:

The Metuchen-Edison Historical Society presents it's 22nd annual Local History Day on Sunday February 12, 2012 from 1:30-4:00 pm in the community room of the Metuchen Library, 480 Middlesex Ave. in Metuchen.

Because the 12th is Lincoln's actual birthday, the theme of this year's event is "The Civil War", with related items among the many artifacts from the collections of the Society on display. In addition, old maps, photographs, post cards, and gravestone rubbings, will be on display, providing residents with the opportunity to research their homes and learn about their community's diverse and interesting history, which includes Revolutionary War battlefields, fascinating architecture, and famous people. The Society will also have books, maps and other paraphernalia for sale to those who have an interest in the history of our area.

Local History Day is free and open to the public with ample parking in the 
Library parking lot on Library Pl. and on the surrounding streets. For more information contact:  Steve Reuter at 732-452-1381 or Walter Stochel at 732-906-0529.

St. Francis Open House January 29th

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Check out this Open House for preschool - 8th grade education at 
St. Francis Cathedral School
528 Main Street, Metuchen, NJ
Sunday, January 29, 2012
1:00pm - 2:30pm
All are welcome!
For more information about our school,
 check our website at
or call 732-548-3107.

Goodbye Rac -- Hello, Bookstore Boutique?

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The Raconteur had its final farewell on Saturday night. Thanks, Rac, for all the fun these past six years! But now, according to Facebook posts over the past couple of weeks, it becomes clear to MM that Karen Winters of Metuchen is on her way to becoming the proprietor of a new bookstore/boutique on Main Street, exact destination unknown. Now she wants everyone to take a crack at naming the store!

Here is the Facebook post from the site of To Be Continued . . . Bookstore/Boutique:

If you had the opportunity to name a bookstore on Main St., what would you name it? 

"To Be Continued... Bookstore Boutique" is holding a contest, open to everyone, to share their opinion(s) for a unique and memorable name. 

Selected winning entry will receive a Grand Prize of 1 book a day for 1 year (plus the honor of having their name engraved for posterity on the façade of the store). Other prizes may be awarded to close runner-ups and EVERYONE who enters will receive a "To Be Continued... Bookstore Boutique" store credit Gift Card ranging from $5-$25 (depending on how many votes received.) 

Enter as many times as you want using our Facebook page or by emailing tobecontinued@metuchen.us with your opinion, name, age and parent's permission to participate if under 18 years of age. 

Winner will be announced in late March and then honored during our Grand Opening/Ribbon Cutting Ceremony in April.

Disclaimer: This is not a lottery or sweepstakes. The winner will be selected based on merit & originality (maybe popularity, too) by a 3-5 person judging panel of local residents, artists & officials.

So get naming, Metuchen. Here's the Facebook link if you need it . . . Good luck out there!

Satori Fit Center Grand Opening January 26th

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A Grand Opening and official Ribbon Cutting Ceremony will take place on Thursday, January 26, at Satori Academy's latest addition, The Satori Fit Center. The official Ribbon Cutting Ceremony will take place at 6:00 PM with interactive demo classes for both adults and children lasting until 8:00 pm. Representatives from the Metuchen Area Chamber of Commerce will be joined by Edison Mayor Antonia Ricigliano as we welcome the new expansion of the Satori Center to the Metuchen and Edison business community.

Located in the Tano Mall at 1199 Amboy Avenue in Edison, NJ, the Satori Fit Center is a new studio adjacent to Satori Academy. It will be used for adult fitness and martial arts programs including Kickboxing, Fitness, Strength and Personal Training.  Classes are conveniently scheduled to run opposite children's classes so parents can simultaneously get their workouts in. Satori Academy is located at 1199 Amboy Avenue in Edison, in the Tano Mall. Hours of Operation are: Monday: 10-9:00 pm, Tuesday: 12-9:00 pm, Wednesday: 10-8:00 pm, Thursday: 12-10:00 pm, Friday: 12-6:30 pm and Saturday: 9:00 - 3:30 pm For more information, please visit our website at www.satoriacademynj.com or call (732) 494-2195. 

On Friday, February 17 at 12:30 PM, Kaplan Test Prep will offer a free SAT/ACT Combo Practice Test at the Metuchen Public Library, 480 Middlesex Avenue. The 3.5 hour Practice Test helps students decide which test is right for them. Students will receive scores and feedback via email that compares their performance on each of the analogous test sections of the two exams---for example, SAT math section vs. ACT math section. This is a perfect opportunity to experience both tests, now that most colleges will accept either exam for admissions.

To sign up for the Friday, February 17 Combo test, please write Young Adult Librarian Kathy Liss at KLiss@Lmxac.org or call the Library on 732.632.8526. Space is limited. The free test has early registration open at this time for Metuchen residents in grades 9, 10 and 11, but registration will open to interested others on February 6.

Also on Friday, February 17 from 1 PM until 2:30 PM, Mrs. B" (professional cooking instructor Helen Bayer) will teach students to make their own pizza from scratch at the Metuchen Public Library, 480 Middlesex Avenue.  Participants will learn to mix and knead the dough and to top the pie with fresh ingredients. Everyone leaves the class with their own pizza to bake at home and with recipes. 

The program is FREE to all Metuchen residents in grades 6-12 and paid for by the Friends of the Metuchen Library. Registration is required and limited, due to space.  Please write the Young Adult Librarian Kathy Liss at KLiss@Lmxac.org or call the Library on 732.632.8526.

From Neve Shalom:

Neve Shalom, Saturday Evening, January 28, will conduct a Havdalah and Musical program starting at 6:00pm - Bet Class students will lead Havdalah - In memory of Debbie Friedman - all of the songs will be her compositions. Refreshments will be served. There is no charge for the "25th Hour" Program. For more information contact Hazzan Levin - 732-548-2238 - ext. 14

Neve Shalom, in conjunction with the Northern NJ Federation of Jewish Men's clubs - Family Games is offering a special discounted ticket purchase - New Jersey Devils vs. Tampa Bay Lightning on Sunday, February 26, 2012 - 1:00pm - Great afternoon game for the kids! Games are at the Prudential Center - Newark, NJ -  TICKETS - $61.00 ticket for only $40.00! Includes $10 food card! (a $71 total value) Save over 40% per ticket! Balcony seating. We are also raffling off an 8x10 autographed photo!  To Order Tickets - Mail by January 31, 2012 with payment to: Neve Shalom Men's Club, Attn: Louis Eisenberg, 250 Grove Ave., Metuchen, NJ 08840 - Checks payable to the Neve Shalom Men's Club. Please include No. of tickets, contact name, address, city, state, zip code, telephone and email. Questions? Call/Email Louis Eisenberg 732-672-9278 - eisenberg4@optonline.net OR Matthew Bonus 732-968-4489 - matlicia@optonline.net


MLK Essay Winners at Edgar School Celebrated

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From the Superintendent's Office:

2012 Edgar MLK winners and teachers

(Left to right)
Teachers:  Jennifer Muller, Melissa Kovacs, Andrea Elton 

Students:  Aviv Hogan Appell (Grade 5), Ashima Sharma (Grade 6), Siri Uppuluri (Grade 7)

On Monday, January 16th, the Metuchen Public Schools were thrilled to participate in the 5th Annual Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Breakfast at The Pines Manor.  This year's program, entitled, "The New Birth of Dreamers...Come Dream With Us," was sponsored by the Metuchen Area Chamber of Commerce, the YMCA of Metuchen, Edison, Woodbridge, and South Amboy, the New Hope Baptist Church, and the Second Baptist Church.  Helene Zahn did an excellent job in her role as moderator.  The audience was treated to the sounds of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Choir and an inspiring keynote address by Mildred "Millie" Scott, Middlesex County Sheriff.  In addition there were words of reflection from 6th district Congressman Frank Pallone, Jr., an invocation from Rev. Dr. Ronald L. Owens and a benediction from Reverend Mark B. McCreary.  Representing the Metuchen Public Schools were Superintendent Vincent Caputo, Edgar Principal Kathy Glutz, Edgar Assistant Principal Mike Knoth, teachers Jennifer Muller, Melissa Kovacs, Andrea Elton, and counselor Elaine Goldstein.  In addition to the winners from Edgar School, Aviv Hogan Appell (Grade 5), Ashima Sharma (Grade 6), Siri Uppuluri (Grade 7), eighth grade student David James White from the Metuchen Christian Academy was also honored.       

Indoor Roller Hockey Club Looking for Sponsors

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From the Central Jersey Fanatics Hockey Club:

We would like to extend an invitation to you and your company to become a sponsor for our 2011-2012 season. The Fanatics Hockey Club is a non profit hockey team based out of Metuchen, NJ. We are seeking sponsorship/donations from various businesses in our communities. We're committed to the long term growth and development of Roller hockey players . We provide playing opportunities to all skill sets of adult's regardless of gender and ability. The club aims to provide a warm welcome to everybody, includingsupporters, charities, and sponsors. We aim to be recognized as a charitable, social and family oriented hockey club. We are looking for sponsors who are willing to donate any dollar amount to assist in covering our major expenses such as rink time, officials, equipment, uniforms and administrative costs. In return for your contribution we will support your business with advertising. As a hockey club, we host charity hockey games to benefit various charitable organizations. During our charity events we will establish a game program which will be distributed to our patrons. Our sponsors are also provided exposure through our website www.aihlhockey.com.





RIP Rac #2 -- Celebrate the Rac This Weekend

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8 PM, Sat. Jan 21


Featuring Shayfer James, Honor Amongst Thieves, FenFell, and Laurence Mintz

Join us again in remembering, celebrating, and memorializing our almost bygone bookstore as Shay Jay tickles his tusks while logging saws sing; the H.A.T. sideshow eats fire, swallows swords, and escapes from a glass box filled with water; FenFell conducts its junkyard orchestra, and my man Mintz exhibits fifteen factory scapes, a dozen rail yards, and ten nekkid ladies, all done in the deep shadowy shades of Mr. Eddie Hopper.

VAM Art Inc. Ribbon Cutting TONIGHT

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From Chamber of Commerce:
The work of fifteen artists from five nations representing four continents will be showcased at "Resurgence-2012." A Grand Opening and official Ribbon Cutting Ceremony will take place on Wednesday, January 18, 2012, at VAM Art Inc. The official Ribbon Cutting Ceremony will take place at 6:00 PM. Representatives from the Metuchen Area Chamber of Commerce will be joined by Metuchen Mayor Thomas Vahalla as we welcome gallery directors, Mamta and Vinay Nair, to the Metuchen business community.


"Resurgence-2012," the second International Contemporary Fine Art Exhibition organized by the New Jersey based VAM Art Inc. will begin on January 18, 2012 at the VAM Art Gallery, 15 Station Place, Metuchen, NJ 08840.

They include internationally acclaimed artists like Hikaru Yumura, Jiro Inagaki, Ad Arma, Murali Cheeroth and N.N. Rimzon who will be presenting their latest work along with the work of highly recognized artists  like Martin Reyna, Pradeep Puthoor, Ashok Kumar Gopalan, Rita Kaplan, T.M. Aziz, Mathai Tom, Mukesh Sharma, Pratul Dash, Birenda Pani and Rani Rekha.

Superintendent Caputo Reads to Students at Campbell School

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Superintendent_V__Caputo.jpgMetuchen Superintendent Vincent Caputo is well on his way to getting to know his constituency first hand. The other day he read "Mr. Tannen's Ties" to Dee Sneddon's second graders at Campbell Elemetary School as part of a school-wide literacy initiative.  According to Principal Florence Carter, a language arts specialist who previously helped revamp Edgar School's reading program,  "There is nothing more important than our youngest students having the best possible reading instruction."  Mr. Caputo followed this book with Barack Obama's "Of Thee I Sing," a tribute to great American heroes in all fields, written as a heartfelt letter to his daughters. The visit was greatly enjoyed by students and staff alike.

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Local Cub Scout Den 5 Visits Metuchen Matters

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In order to complete their GO SEE IT for Communcations, Den 5 Central New Jersey Council of Boy Scouts, Pack 69 came to Metuchen Matters to check out how hyperlocal news is made. The boys visited our headquarters and learned how we put together stories and get them up on the internet to share with the community. 

Of course, MM had to ask the boys to give a rundown of all the wonderful things that they do that makes Scouting such a fun activity (and, since they have 105 Cub Scouts in this pack, the largest in New Jersey, they must be doing something right). Here's what I learned: The scouts love camping and can accrue badges and belt loops through different sports and academic activities. They practice all types of practical skills and one of the Scouts exclaimed that the most fun was doing something over and over again until they learned to do it really well. 

I have to admit a little jealousy at the amount of cool things the boys get to enjoy together: visiting the Rutgers Geology Museum, participating in the famous Pinewood Derby next month, performing "Manamana" at the Blue and Gold dinner on January 27th and planning both a Winter Overnight at Franklin Institute and a trip to see the Harlem Globetrotters. Seriously, could they be having more fun?

Thanks to Cub Master Steve Santangelo for suggesting the den come to MM to see how what we do affects our community. And thanks to David Boris, Julian Dutemple, Thomas Flint, Connor Larson, Matthew Raab, Xavier Santangelo, Connor Spinelli, Matthias Topping, David Vanegas and Den Chief Max Santangelo for stopping by and allowing MM to learn so much about scouting. These "cub" reporters should be filing new stories soon so keep checking back for more exciting stuff from these energetic young scouts!


Happy Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, everyone! In light of the work of Dr. King, here is a story about one member of our community who used a difficult experience and turned it into community service:

Tyreen Reuter is a mother of two young children and a stealthy supporter of Downtown Metuchen and its businesses. After almost being run down by an unsafe driver around the holidays, she reached out to MM and we printed a letter about it (http://www.metuchenmatters.com/2011/12/dangerous_drivers_causes_concern_for_citizens_and_downtown_businesses.html). This letter brought a call from the Mayor, who asked her to join the Transportation and Traffic Commission. She accepted the invitation and attended her first meeting last week. Here's what she had to say about it:

"I went to my first meeting last night - it was very eye-opening!  There are certainly a lot of issues they have been investigating and advising on.  Daniel Lebar . . . is the Chair and can probably fill you on a lot that has been going on.  Some of the issues have to do with the conditions of the train underpass at Main Street, street lamps that are out, complaints of speed and cut-throughs, etc.

In terms of the pedestrian safety issue, there are a number of things in the works already!  Officer Bauer . . . is really on top of this and can provide more detail and has some plans to alert motorists as they enter Metuchen that they need to be aware of and obey crosswalk laws.  Also, there are flyers to be handed out to pedestrians and motorists - he is procuring them.  Ideas were floated around about how to get the word out about the town taking its pedestrian safety seriously, and so there might be some publicity and perhaps the committee would have a presence at events like the Cruise Nights, Junebug, etc.  There are a couple of helpful "giveaways" (i.e., a high visibility tote bag with a pedestrian symbol and stop sign, reflective vest) that we might be able to make available to the public.

Several people have told me that they are interested in helping with any initiatives, and I am completing that list for the committee, but one thing that Mr. Lebar and Officer Bauer agreed would be extremely helpful right now is that anyone in Metuchen who experiences an incident should report it through the Borough website (see the link to the committee and form below).  This would help the police (and the committee) identify the "hotspots" that need to be addressed.  Too often attention isn't given to a crossing or situation until there is an accident, but if the public reports trouble in a particular area, then it can be evaluated."

If you have an issue to report, or want to volunteer on this safety mission, please click here. Thanks to Tyreen and the commission for making these serious issues a priority in town.

Rec Basketball Teaches Great Skills for Girls

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basketballmakena.jpgIn these days when Title IX is being reconsidered and threatened with distinction, girls are engaging in fun and educational basketball fitness programs in our area. Here, Makena Tramontin of Metuchen is flanked by Kerri Farrell on the right and Alison Carr on the left in the Edison Youth Basketball League run by Edison Rec. on January 7th. Does the green team (named after basketball behemoth UCONN) have a chance against the pink team (named after the Lady Vol at TENNESSEE)? 

No matter who turns out to be the victor, everyone wins! These are two of Metuchen's three teams (the other being the blue RUTGERS team). These teams from the Brainy Boro are sponsored by the Metuchen Recreation Commission. This great program is teaching the girls a lot! For additional information on how your B-Ball Girl can get involved, check out the Metuchen Recreation Commission site.

Junebug Looking for Volunteers -- Meeting Monday January 23rd

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From Linda LaStella and the Junebug committee:

JUNEBUG 2012 COMMITTEE is gearing up to plan the 5th Anniversary of the ArtFest.  The committee is in need of several key coordinators:, a WRITER, PR-PERSON to head up PUBLICITY to get the word out about the 'Bug, a GRAPHIC DESIGNER to develop this year's program, and  an organizer willing to head up SPONSORSHIP, in addition to others willing to join the team to assist with more general work. The Junebug ArtFest is the work of a completely volunteer group.  If in the past four years, you've been a Host, if you've just come to enjoy the event, we do ask you to consider joining the team in a more involved way.

FIRST MEETING:  MONDAY, JANUARY 23, 7:30pm, second floor meeting room in Borough Hall.  See you there!



Muniipal Alliance 2012 Needs Survey -- They'd Love Your Feedback

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From Borough Hall:

The Metuchen Municipal Alliance is currently working on a community needs assessment as required each Grant cycle by the Govenor's Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse (GCADA) the funding source for our Municipal Alliance grant. We would appreciate the community's support in completing the first in a series of community surveys which we will participate. 

Marafiki Fair Trade's American Artists Series Saturday 7-9 PM

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Marafiki Fair Trade invites you to join us here at 20 New Street, Metuchen on Saturday, January 14 from 7 to 9 p.m. for the next event in Marafiki's American Artists Series - a show featuring the fine art jazz prints and tribal sculpture of  artist Easton Davy.  Meet Easton, have some complimentary wine and cheese, and enjoy live jazz performed by Metuchen's own David Grossman!

Easton Davy's jazz artworks have been collected all over the world for the past 15 years. Easton Davy is also known for his 'live painting' improvisations during jazz performances.  In 2004 Davy was present at the North Sea Jazz Festival in Holland to do a live painting with the Greg Osby Quartet during their Blue Note Records jazz performance. Later he painted live acts during events like The Dutch NuMoon Festival and the Rotterdam Museum Night. He also creates jazz CD covers for Blue Note Records (some of which will be available for sale), and various European jazz labels.

Weekend of Great Events At Neve Shalom Jan 20-21

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Neve Shalom of Metuchen  Adult Education Committee and the Gilbert and Claudie Hayat Speaker Series presents Josh Margolin, Journalist and author Reporter for NY Post and formerly The Star Ledger "The Jersey Sting". The story of crooked politicians and money laundering rabbi's in NJ. Friday night, January 20, 2012 at the 8pm service. Discussion will continue with refreshments. For more information contact Hazzan Levin - 732-548-2238, ext. 14.

The Sisterhood Neve Shalom will lift their voices in prayer for Sisterhood Shabbat, Saturday, January 21, 2012 - 9:30am. Kiddush luncheon to follow services. Following a luncheon special a discussion on the #1 Wall Street Journal Bestseller,"STRENGTH FINDER 2.0"  by Tom Rath ,NY Times Bestselling Author of WELLBEING". For more information contact Nancy - nshloss@aol.com or Jennifer - rnjbullock@aol.com

American Red Cross Blood Drive at Metuchen Library Sunday

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The Metuchen Public Library, 480 Middlesex Avenue, will host an American Red Cross Blood Drive on Sunday, January 15, 2012 from 9 AM until 3 PM.  For your convenience, you can make an appointment by calling Sam Liss at 732.632.7459 or by writing sdliss@emory.edu. Or feel free to drop in at the Metuchen Library to donate blood on the day of the drive, even if you do not have an appointment.

The need for blood is ongoing.  The supply is not.  Every two seconds, over 43,000 times a day, someone in the U.S. needs blood.  Can you give the gift of life?  In order to donate blood, one must be at least 17 years old, weigh 110 pounds, and be in good health.

From Kat Drinane Davis at the Y:

Screenwriting 101 -- Sundays, 1-3pm   January 22-March 4

$95member/$115 program member

Youth grades 6-9

Discover how the magic of the movies is created by words on the page.  Elements of screenwriting, formatting, character development, plot development and three-act structures will be discussed and a short screenplay will be completed at the end of the session.

Taught by Metuchen Matters' own Jana Siciliano!

Spanish Language and Culture -- Wednesdays, 4:15-5:15pm  January 18- Feb. 29

$60 member/$75 program member

Children ages 4-6

Crafts and songs will be used to introduce Spanish language and culture in a fun way!  During free time -15 minutes at the end of class - the teacher will call the students one by one and read a story in Spanish.  Taught by Lorena Edenbaum, a notive Colombian, Metuchen mom and certified teacher!  This is a drop-off class.

Register now!

Congratulations, MHS Marching Band!

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mhsband2.jpgOur good friend Tina DiSano has sent a wide array of photos from the exciting Marching Band trip to Miami last week. The band and color guard and Mr. Messenger and everybody who had anything to do with this should be very proud at having represented Metuchen so well on the national front! Congratulations!

Now check out these photos here and at this link (http://ttpartypics.smugmug.com/Events/MHS-Junior-Orange-Bowl-Parade/20916462_dGqFxB#!i=1661341333&k=hC9NTqN) and this one (http://ttpartypics.smugmug.com/Events/Discover-Orange-Bowl-1412/20917091_RPfJz2#!i=1661400732&k=DPcbQRP) as well (I don't know why they won't hyperlink so cut and paste for the full experience). What you will see is a bunch of highly-motivated and energetic young people having an experience they will never forget. A big thanks to everyone who donated money and time to make this happen for them -- you should be very proud of having helped facilitate this once-in-a-lifetime event!

MHS Band Performs -- Catch It On Youtube (no thanks to ESPN)

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If you watched the Orange Bowl on ESPN last night, you might have gotten two things straight: that Discover is an attention hog (I mean, the whole BOWL is named after you -- did you really need 8000 commercials about yourself, too!) and ESPN is in serious trouble with Metuchen families! How dare they NOT show Metuchen High School's Marching Band on the air last night! COME ON! MM speaks for everybody in the community, we're sure, when we say we feel gypped by the lack of coverage of this stellar band's performance at half-time. But check out this link and get a load of some of Metuchen's finest helping out with the National Anthem show and the largest flag this side of . . .  well, just about anywhere. Congrats, kids, you did a great job! Hope you each had the time of your life (so far)! Sleep well tonight -- you deserve it!

Buono Delivers Strong Message about Priorities to Christie

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buono.jpgState Senator Barbara Buono has never been known to mince words and so, at the start of the new year, she is delivering a strong message about priorities to Governor Chris Christie in Trenton. Check out her open letter here.

Neve Shalom "Java Nagila" Discussion Sunday

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A "Java Nagila" for Hebrew School and Nursery Parents of Neve Shalom is being held for discussions, friendship, coffee, tea and bagels. The date is Sunday, January 8 at 9:00am.  For more information, please contact Hazzan Levin at 732-548-2238, ext. 14.

Our New Year's Resolutions

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calvin-and-hobbes.jpgMetuchen Matters has resolutions, just like anybody at the start of a new year! Our resolution is to continue to offer our community a place where you can find news and engage in conversations about the important stuff happening in our town day-to-day. We have always tried to stay on the side of non-partiality and will continue to do so. We are still having issues with our sign-up so you can always check us out on Facebook and comment or raise questions there if you have trouble leaving comments on the site.

Being a positive forum is one thing we don't want to change this year and we hope that you will find us a welcome arena for engaged conversation and discussion as 2012 hits us with its best shots! Happy new year to everybody!

Marx Bros at the Raconteur This Weekend

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Raconteur Radio Presents

8:00 PM, Fri. Jan 6; 7:30 & 9:00 PM, Sat. Jan 7


Featuring acclaimed Groucho impersonator Ron MacCloskey (in full costume & makeup) and Welcome Back Kotter's Bobby Hegyes (Epstein) as Chico Marx!

Flywheel, Shyster, and Flywheel was the Marx Brothers radio debut. It first aired in 1932 and was written by the same writers who wrote some of their funniest film bits. Our production features short comedic skits broken up by several period songs sung live, including the notorious Groucho hit, "Lydia, the Tattooed Lady." Also with Michael Jarmus and Francesca Tedeschi. $10 (payable at the door). Theatrical lighting! Costumes! Sound effects! Raconteur Radio productions are staged performances of famous radio plays for live audiences. To find out how you can book Raconteur Radio at your library, school, or cultural venue, click HERE.

In the battle of the bands that accompanies the Orange Bowl performance tonight, The Metuchen High School Marching Band won first place! Proud mama Staci Gil sent in this photo from Tina DiSano. Congratulations to the band and break a leg tonight!

MHS and Booster Club Honors 1000-Point Scorers Tonight

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From the MHS Booster Club:

Tomorow evening, January 4th, MHS and the Booster Club will be honoring all of our 1,000-point scorers at a special ceremony to be held between the boys and girls varsity basketball games at 5.45 pm. The girls game will begin at 4.15 and the boys game will begin at 6.30. 

In addition to MHS's 1,000-point scorers, Dr.Bruce Rosenfeld (Class of '76) will attend the game and do a book signing for his recently published book 'Make Every Shot Count'. In his book, Dr. Rosenfeld discusses how the life lessons he learned on the MHS basketball court helped make him the successful surgeon he is today. 
Mayor Thomas Vahalla, Councilman Peter Cammarano and Councilman Jay Muldoon will take the Oath of Office for their new terms at the 2012 Reorganization Meeting of the Metuchen Borough Council on Tuesday, January 3, 2012 at 6:30 pm at Borough Hall. Reception to follow at the B.I.L.

MHS Marching Band to Perform at Orange Bowl Half=Time Tomorrow

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metuchenband.jpgCheck out this article from the Ledger about the Metuchen High School Marching Band and Color Guard. They will play with platinum-selling recording artists Train (Hey Soul Sistah) during the half-time show during tomorrow's big game. Go MHS!

St. Francis Open House Coming Up

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There will be an Open House for 2012 at St. Francis Cathedral School on Wednesday, January 11th, 9 - 10:30am, for Adults Only. The Open House for Pre-K and Kindergarten will be run only at 7pm

The Open House on Sunday, January 29th will run from 1 - 2:30pm and is open to interested families and their children.

For more information, contact:
St. Francis Cathedral School
528 Main Sreet
Metuchen, NJ  08840

Metuchen Public Library Offers American Red Cross Blood Drive

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From Katherine Liss, MPL:

The Metuchen Public Library, 480 Middlesex Avenue, will host an American Red Cross Blood Drive on Sunday, January 15, 2012 from 9 AM until 3 PM.  For your convenience, you can make an appointment by calling Sam Liss at 732.632.7459. Or feel free to drop in at the Metuchen Library to donate blood on the day of the drive, even if you do not have an appointment.

The need for blood is ongoing.  The supply is not.  Every two seconds, over 43,000 times a day, someone in the U.S. needs blood.  Can you give the gift of life?  In order to donate blood, one must be at least 17 years old, weigh 110 pounds, and be in good health.

From the Chamber of Commerce:
The weekend celebration will wrap up on Monday, January 16th, at the Fifth Annual Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Breakfast to be held at the Pines Manor, 2085 Route 27 in Edison. Musical entertainment will feature the uplifting and harmonious voices of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Choir. We are proud to announce that this year's keynote speaker is Mildred S. Scott, Sheriff of Middlesex County. She is the first female Sheriff for the county of Middlesex and the first African American Sheriff in the state of New Jersey. Guest speakers will include four middle school children that will read their winning essays that address the question:  "What would Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. say to all of us if he were alive today?" 

The Metuchen Area Chamber of Commerce, YMCA of Metuchen, Edison, Woodbridge, & South Amboy, New Hope Baptist Church, and Second Baptist Church have joined together to offer an opportunity for the community to unite in a "Weekend of Celebration" to honor Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  This year's theme continues to be "The New Birth of Dreamers....Come Dream With Us"

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