April 2015 Archives

Parking Authority Minutes and Meetings Info HERE

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The Parking Authority meeting agendas for March 17th and April 21, 2015 have posted.

Click here for March 17, 2015 agenda.

Click here for April 21, 2015 agenda.



The Parking Authority meeting minutes for January 20th, February 17th and March 17, 2015 have posted.

Click here for January 20, 2015 minutes.


Click here for February 17, 2015 minutes.


Click here for March 17, 2015 minutes



Metuchen native Quinn Shephard is shooting her original indy feature BLAME here in town this summer and is putting out a call about needed crew and cast members for the shoot. Here's her Facebook notice:

"Hi all! Any NJ/NY crew, volunteers, extras, etc interested in working on BLAME, please INBOX ME on this page! Additionally please inbox me the best way to contact you.

Our projected filming dates are 6/17/15 - 7/8/15, but that may be adjusted to fit actors schedules so please note your avail between 6/15/15 and 8/15/15...

Please indicate in your message how you would like to participate. (i.e. extra, featured extra with at least 8 day commitment, craft services, assistants for crew, hair and makeup, wardrobe, props, publicity, set decorating etc...)

If you know anyone that would be interested in volunteering for this project, please have them reach out in the same manner. I am open to new recruits!

If you are interested in extra work, PLEASE ONLY CONTACT Andrew Sherwood at Andrew.Sherwood200@gmail.com or through Facebook at the BLAME extras page on FB at the project. This is an ultra-low budget UNION shoot so there is no payment for PAs or extras.


For some information on Shephard, who won the Rising Star award at this year's Garden State Film Festival, click on this link. Her IMDB profile is here. 

Free Painting Class with Ed Wetzel May 2nd at LIbrary

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'Make Your Drawings POP with Perspective!' 
A FREE ART DEMO on one and two point perspective by Ed Wetzel. Participants will draw a landscape utilizing drawing aids (to be provided) Ages 14+. Families welcome! To pre-register: call 732-632-8526 email MetuchenLibrary@gmail.com

Where: Metuchen Public Library.
When: Saturday, May 2, 2015

Time: 2pm to 4pm

Colby_4_Photo_by_Pat_Rubin.jpgMichael Colby grew up in and around the Algonquin Hotel in New York City, where the Round Table writers and raconteurs conversed for decades and he was serenaded by Ella Fitzgerald herself. His book, THE ALGONQUIN KID, is about to launch and he will be reading at To BE Continued on April 29th. MM asked him a few questions about his life that are not discussed in this recent New York Times article. Check it out!

What prompted you to write the book NOW?

NOW turned out to be the ideal time, with the Internet making it so easy for me to research and consolidate information.  In addition, as my grandparents' generation has passed on, I felt it incumbent on me to gather family history while there were still relatives to delineate the facts.   Adding to the authenticity, I've been fortunate in having kept diaries since I was 18 years old, to evoke and verify family history.   Nonetheless, my family history included some turbulent times at my home in Long Island.   That and sadness over lost family members made me question whether I had the emotional wherewithal to objectively achieve my three goals:  (1) provide a chronicle of the Algonquin Hotel in years not previously covered (from 1946 on); (2) narrate a family history (since my family's past includes fascinating facts beyond just the Algonquin, including ties to the Gershwin family and the musical FIDDLER ON THE ROOF); (3) tell the story of how I, as a real-life counterpart to Eloise of the Plaza (my middle name is even Elihu), navigated my own way into the world of theatre and the Arts.

What was pivotal in the development of the book was a venue whereby I could "test the waters."   That venue was a series of articles via the online website www.theaterpizzazz, thanks to its editor, my wonderful friend Sandi Durell.   I knew, after a year of relating my experiences, I would be capable of finishing this history in book form.  BearManor Media made an offer to publish, and I gratefully completed my goal.


When did you realize that you were surrounded by some of the most iconic figures in the arts and entertainment field by living there?

I lived something of an insular life, where for years, I just assumed it was normal to be surrounded by famous people.  Where I was especially fortunate was observing the balance sheet of people in the Arts, both those on the rise and those on the downward spiral.  I realized the importance of humility, knowing brilliant but selfless icons like Maya Angelou and Thornton Wilder.  I also recognized the folly of vanity, observing former celebrities whose egos became their downfall.

There are still seats available for The Metuchen Senior Center bus trip to Resorts in Atlantic City, Tuesday, April 28th leaving from Edgar School parking lot 9AM and returning at 6:30PM. The cost is $25 per person and includes a return of $25 in slot cash. Not limited to seniors but you must be over 21 years of age. Reservations with payment must be made in person at the Metuchen Senior Center, 15 Center St. Call 732-632-8524 for more info.

Neve Shalom Open House May 6

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Open Letter from Resident About Street Safety

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April 16, 2015

To Metuchen Matters:

Last night I attended the Traffic and Transportation Committee meeting where

the Street Smart NJ program was explained.  It was great to see such a dedicated group working on these issues of major importance to Metuchen.

I went to the meeting because of my frustration with how difficult it is to be a pedestrian in our small borough. I want to share some of the statistics presented at the meeting that seem shocking to me.

In Metuchen between 2011 and 2014, thirty-two crashes involving pedestrians resulted in pedestrian injury. There were two pedestrians killed.  SIXTY PERCENT OF THE CRASHES OCCURRED WHILE THE PEDESTRIAN WAS CROSSING IN A MARKED CROSSWALK.  Sixty-three percent of the crashes occurred during daylight hours. In New Jersey, the pedestrian fatality rate is nearly double the national average.

These statistics show that we have a major problem with pedestrian safety in Metuchen. Isn't it time for a change in how we view the importance of pedestrian safety in our community? If increased enforcement means hiring more police for the job, we as a community should demand that this be addressed. How much does a life cost? How many more people will be injured or killed simply trying to take a walk in our small town?


Maggie Glynn

Metuchen Rec Summer Classes List Is Out! RIght HERE!

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Metuchen Recreation Commission Summer Classes (9 pages of Information!)
earth day flyer.jpg

7th Annual Fuce 5K Run/Walk Registration form HERE

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From Peace Islands Institute:MIMI.jpg

Peace Islands Institute (PII) and JFK Medical Center's Pastoral Care Department are organizing the 6th Annual Value of Women in Our Community Program, this year entitled "Recognizing Prominent Service and Contributions of Small Business Owners."

Recognition awards will be presented to: Mimi Tenglei of Metuchen and Deniz Ozyildiz of North Brunswick. This event will be held at JFK Medical Center's Conference Center on Sunday, May 3, 2015 at 4 pm. There will be live Turkish music by Aslihan Erkisi, plus the Rainbow Children's choir and Turkish food as highlights of the event. This event is open to public, men and women, who are interested in local diversity programs. Please feel free to share this invitation with your friends.

About PII:

Peace Islands Institute (PII) aspires to facilitate a forum of mutual respect and collaboration, both welcoming and accepting varied viewpoints and voices with the intentions of developing original and alternative perspectives on vital issues that our society is facing, of generating solutions to these issues, and of supporting successful practices, thus promoting education, friendship and harmony and acting as an island of peace for all peoples in a society of different ethnic, cultural and religious backgrounds. 

Contact Peace Islands Institute | 777 Terrace Ave, Suite: 109 Hasbrouck Heights NJ 07604

Tel: (201) 426-0689    Peace Islands Institute is a peace building organization


Cuts for a Cause Returns

Get a Great Haircut and Contribute to the Fuccile Foundation

Need your Spring haircut? Come on down to Razorsharp Barbershop & Shave Parlor on April 26th between 9AM and 3PM! All proceeds benefit the Fuccile Foundation!
Razorsharp is located at 569 Middlesex Avenue in Metuchen.
A big thank you to our friends at Razorsharp for donating their time and talent!

The members of Woodwild Park Association invite all citizens to help out on their  Annual Spring Cleanup of Woodwild Park on Saturday morning, April 18, 2015.  "We will assemble at 9 AM at the back of the park on Chestnut near Oak.  The Park's main entrance is at the stone pillars on Middlesex Avenue between Oak Avenue and Grove AvenueIt's a great way to meet your neighbors and others who appreciate nature and wildlife," members have told Metuchen Matters.

If possible, please bring your garden gloves, rakes, cutters, paper bags for twigs, branches and clippings and plastic bags for garbage.

Woodwild Park is a 3.5-acre natural park and wildlife sanctuary in Metuchen.  Over 58 species of birds have been recorded.  Most recently a scarlet tanager was spotted on its annual migration! Support our natural beauty and help out this weekend!

The park is managed by Woodwild Park Association, a group of volunteers dedicated to maintaining and preserving it for future generations.  For more information, visit www.woodwildpark.org or call 917-207-4953

On April 21, members of the New Jersey Library Association (NJLA), library advocates and community leaders will honor Elizabeth Waldron at its annual honors and awards reception. The evening serves to celebrate the contributions of library staff and supporters across the state, and highlight library service across the state.

Ms. Waldron was highlighted for her strong leadership skills and commitment to the Metuchen Public Library. This award recognizes those trustees who use their terms to make significant contributions to the function of their public library, and serve as its active advocates. During Liz's term as the President of the Metuchen Library of the Trustees, she worked endlessly to turn around a stagnant and deteriorating library into a vibrant community center with a gallery for exhibits, and a makerspace for people to come together to work on innovative ideas. She inspired all the other trustees to work together, set up new policies to improve the financial situation, resolved challenging personnel issues, supported intellectual freedom, and also improved the accessibility to seniors and people with disabilities with the installations of automatic doors, ADA compliant service desk and shelving.

"Liz's warm, cheerful, and 'can do' attitude creates a harmonized atmosphere between all the trustees and as a result moves the library forward in a great speed."  - Susanna Chan, Director of Metuchen Public Library

"I was charged with the mission of breathing new life into our library and with the support of a great board and a passionate Metuchen we exposed the full potential of this gem of our community.  We are very fortunate and proud to have a proactive Director overseeing our library operations, and with the support of the community and the guidance of an engaged board the future is extremely bright." - Elizabeth Waldron, Metuchen Public Library Board of Trustees

Catch up on Meeting Minutes from Local Committees - HERE!

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Meeting Minutes


The Borough Council March 16, 2015 meeting minutes have been posted.




The Development Commission January 7, 2015 meeting minutes have been posted.




The Development Commission February 11, 2015 meeting minutes have been posted.




The Development Commission March 2, 2015 meeting minutes have been posted.




The Accessibility Committee February 25, 2015 meeting minutes have been posted.




The Pool Commission February 9, 2015 meeting minutes have been posted.




The Shade Tree Commission January 14, 2015 meeting minutes have been posted.




The Shade Tree Commission February 11, 2015 meeting minutes have been posted.




The Historic Preservation Committee February 10, 2015 meeting minutes have
been posted.




The Environmental Commission February 18, 2015 meeting minutes have been posted.






New Concessions Vendor Needed for Metuchen Pool

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The Metuchen Pool Commission is accepting bids for a new concesssions vendor. Check it out here.

Pool Memberships are discounted through April 15th -- registration here.

Main Street New Jersey Program Helps Progress Downtown Growth

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msnj20logo.jpgThanks to the dogged determination of Borough Councilwoman Allison Inserro and Chris Crane, owner of The Criterion, Metuchen will become a part of the Main Street New Jersey program, sure to benefit present and nascent business owners and our Main Street in the coming months.
Check out details here.More info on Main Street New Jersey can be found here: http://www.nj.gov/dca/divisions/dhcr/offices/msnj.html

Painter Ed Wetzel Opens New Studio on Main Street

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This Summer 2015: Ed and his wife Ginny will offer a Yoga and Art Summer Camp for kids during June 22nd to 26th and June 29th to July 3rd. Individuals interested in private, group or Plein-Air lessons are always free to stop by the gallery, or visit www.EdWetzelStudios.com for more information on available classes and services.

An iconic and original player for Rovers International Soccer, Ed Wetzel has been deeply involved in the Metuchen town soccer program since the early 80's. His love of both art and soccer has never wavered and through the years he has carved out the perfect career balance between the two. In his studio, Ed teaches the fundamentals of art in a fun-loving manner that only someone who has coached youth soccer for over 30 years could. He is a beloved founder of many local drawing groups for seniors and adults alike.  Classically trained in portraiture, he studied under many of the greats in the field, including; internationally celebrated portrait artist, Paul W. McCormack, renowned portrait artist and muralist, Brian Townsend and WWII combat artist and CBS courtroom artist-correspondent, Howard Brodie.

Ed's work is prominently and permanently featured in The Metuchen Savings Bank, Metuchen Borough Hall, Metuchen Library, Metuchen YMCA, Sakula Yoga Studio, and at Swain's Gallery. These works include commissioned paintings of the Metuchen Post Office, the Metuchen Borough Hall, the Metuchen Fire House, St. Luke's Church, and the Metuchen Library. He has also been commissioned to paint private residence portraits for several local residents. To commission a residential or commercial property painting, contact him direct at his studio or via email. Ed studied at the following institutions over the years:

• The duCret School of Art in Plainfield, NJ.

• Colorado Institute of Art in Denver, CO.

• The Academy of Arts in San Francisco, CA.

• The Art Students League of New York, NY.

• The Newark School of Fine and Industrial Arts in Newark, NJ.

Ed can be found working on portraits or residential commissions at his studio gallery The Drawing Room, which is located on Main Street in Metuchen's historic district. This year he opened his studio to offer drawing and painting lessons in charcoal, pen and ink, pastel, watercolor, acrylic, oil and mixed media. Children to senior citizens can now learn to draw and paint alongside of the artist, in his studio.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS, METUCHEN! Happy Spring Break, Kids!

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Call for Artists for Junebug! Deadline TODAY

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8th Annual Metuchen Junebug ArtFest Seeks Participants


Registration Deadline: April 3rd  


February 6, 2015: It may be hard to believe with the cold weather outside . . . but the annual Metuchen Junebug Artfest is just around the corner! Visual and performing artists working in all media are invited to take part in this one-of-a-kind festival, which will be held from 6:00 - 10:00 pm every Friday evening in June (June 5th, 12th, 19th and 26th) throughout the streets of downtown Metuchen. Created by artists, for artists, this event draws several hundred visitors to downtown Metuchen NJ every Friday night in June and transforms our community into a month-long celebration of the arts. 


Now in its 8th year, the Junebug ArtFest is itself a work of art: it features 150+ visual and performing artists who participate in open air exhibits, window galleries, live music, interactive art events and open-mic sessions. In its prior seven years, the ArtFest has grown exponentially, both in the numbers of attendees as well as participating artists, who have evolved from primarily local performers and artists to visual artists and musicians from neighboring states.


Artists must register before April 3rd to be considered for participation in June Bug 2015, and online registration is preferred for this event. Simply go to www.junebugartfest.com to register.  If online access is not available, please

contact the chamber office at 732-548-2964 to request a paper application.



The "Brainy Boro" - Metuchen NJ - has been a mecca for artists of every discipline for more than a century. Sponsored by the Metuchen Area Chamber of Commerce and the Metuchen Cultural Arts Commission, the Junebug ArtFest reflects the Borough's commitment to nurturing all forms of creativity.


For more information:


For more information on registration or the event itself, please contact Nicole Chinchar at the Metuchen Area Chamber of Commerce at (732) 548-2964 ormetuchenchamber@optimum.net


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Treasure Hunt Registration IS NOW OPEN for 2015.

First 50 are free.

WE WILL fill up, so please register ASAP.

Last year not everyone got in.


June 13, 2015. 9:30am.  All new CLUES EVERY YEAR.






To get some idea what the Treasure Hunt is like;





Should be a GREAT ONE this year.


          "LIKE"  METUCHEN TREASURE HUNT on facebook.

WE WILL post some Clues there.


Happy Hunting,

Cristian A. Ossa

Mr. Chris Cosenza (Metuchen Zoning Official),


As the weather gets better, we are once again seeing a flurry of street peddlers and unauthorized solicitation of residents and visitors to Main Street (sometimes while sitting at outdoor tables or even being grabbed as they park their vehicles) by aggressive nomadic salespeople.


Many of these peddlers will also walk into retail stores & cafes/restaurants and start annoying customers by offering 'free' samples (which of course only are available if you purchase $20 of their products for example) other times they claim to be taking donations for breast cancer research, etc.


If we as merchants of downtown practiced this method of 'snatching' people on the street (or from other stores) to sell our wares, we'd probably be told to stop (or more probably fined), therefore the question is:


How can we prevent and/or enforce not permitting these folks from being dropped off by their unscrupulous bosses at the train station and told to hover or walk up & down the sidewalks grabbing unsuspecting people in our downtown business district?


Thanks in advance for any help or advice.


To Be Continued... 
Bookstore Boutique & Café


420 Main St - Metuchen - NJ - 08840


Chamber Presents Annual Townwide Garage Sale April 25

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The Metuchen Area Chamber of Commerce presents the 17th Annual Spring Townwide Garage Sale, Saturday, April 25th, 9am-4pm. Rain date, Sunday, April 26th. This year there will NO Fall garage sale, so make sure to get your items out this spring! Last year over 200 homes registered in this unique, annual event!


Metuchen residents can register online visiting www.metuchenchamberexchange.com or pick up a registration form at  the Metuchen Train Station, Metuchen Savings Bank or the Chamber Office at 323 Main Street (Across from the Forum Theater.) Registration deadline to be included in the directory is Friday, April 17th. For more information call (732) 548-2964.  

Borough Council Meeting Time Changed

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The time for the Borough Council meeting scheduled for April 7, 2015 has been changed to a meeting time of 6:30 pm.

Metuchen residents make no secret of the fact that they don't care for the vacant storefronts on Main Street.  As they grapple with big changes like the Pearl Street Development project and the arrival of Whole Foods, their ideas about filling these vacant spaces are decidedly small.  They want to preserve the small town feel and keep family owned businesses alive.


As town officials contemplate a new ordinance allowing temporary "pop up shops" to fill those spaces, current business owners Sergio Gonzalez and Karen Winters are being proactive in their effort not to become another unwanted vacancy. Their bookstore boutique, To Be Continued..., has quietly evolved into a hybrid of all the things residents say they want downtown.  Metuchen has an oasis of Main Street USA mentality already in place as they provide a consignment space for many vendors at a reasonable rate, an affordable, flexible venue for area groups, musicians, authors and private citizens to use as well as the coffee, books, candy and gift items it has always had.  So...what's the catch?

It all gets back to that "quiet evolution."  Awareness must be raised and sales must increase in order for Winters and Gonzalez to make the decision to renew their lease this year.  August 1 is the deadline for them to make the decision to stay or to go.  To that end, they have taken an unprecedented step in sharing that deadline with the community and appealing to them directly for patronage to capitalize $100,000 by August 1. They won't take donations though.  Instead, they are offering $100 Special Limited Edition Patron Gift certificates for each $100 commitment from contributors. 

To kick off what has been dubbed by loyal customer and event organizer Melissa Peterson as the "Boutique Buy-In" campaign there will be a free, all-day open house on March 21, 2015.   It is the first of a series of promotional events ranging from free concerts to photo contests that she will coordinate. The community is invited to come and enjoy musical performances throughout the day as coordinated by the house band leader (yes they have a house band) Lee Caplan.  Caplan has lined up an impressive mix of professionals and students from various Rutgers music programs as well as local Metuchen acts residents already know and love.

Caplan's crew will provide free, live entertainment ranging from classical piano, violin and jazz to folk music and more from 12 noon through 10pm. Attendees can also take a self or guided tour of the store and meet authors and artists set to be featured in future shows. It will also be a forum to hear about the plans for the future from Peterson and have questions answered by the owners directly.

Basically the "Buy-In" is a presale; a commitment from contributors who believe in the store's vision to spend in the near future in exchange for a promise that the store will be there and continue to bring them a great variety of products and services when shoppers need them...at least until January 2019 to be exact. The gift certificates are valid for any merchandise or service offered in the store and the security of the renewed lease will allow To Be Continued...to avoid becoming another vacant storefront and to concentrate on showcasing its diverse selections with a variety of local vendors benefitting.

If Metuchen is serious about keeping Main Street storefronts full and big business at bay, the decision to visit To Be Continued...for the open house and to and learn more about "buying-in" to the presale should be an easy one. For more information contact Buy-In coordinator Ms. Peterson directly at Melissa@Metuchen.us or at 732-439-4423. Visit To Be Continued... on the web at Metuchen.us and on Facebook/MetuchenBookstore. They can also be found on  Instagram and Twitter @ToBeContinuedNJ

Rutgers Cooperative Extension will be presenting information on mulching grass
clippings on site and composting, April 11, 2015
On Saturday, April 11, the Metuchen Shade Tree and Environmental Commissions will be giving away 200 free tree seedlings to town residents for home plantings. Come to the Senior Center from 9AM through 1PM and collect them in person. The seedlings are bare root, one to four feet tall and will include instructions on planting and caring for them.

The trees are being given away as part of NJ's Tree Recovery Program to help replace trees lost in Superstorm Sandy.

April Events at Temple Emanu-El

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April 4  Second Seder Night for Community  Need a
place to share and celebrate the second Passover Seder?  Join the Temple Emanu-El family for a fantastic Passover dinner, complete with holiday song and story.  Open to everyone. Contact the Temple office at 732-549-4442 for prices and to RSVP, which is required.

April 10   Shabbat Alive! A joyous and participatory
musical Shabbat service. Come share the pleasure, along with the rocking music.  7:00 p.m. 

April 17  Tot Shabbat   An age-appropriate fun and
learning program for children up to six years old which also includes a Jewish-themed art and craft session. The program starts at 6:00 pm. 

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