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My Week in an Ocean Grove Tent

  By JOANNE L. PAPAIANNI Last week due to my precarious living conditions, I had the good fortune of spending the week living in the tent community in Ocean Grove. I sold my house in Brick Township on July 20 and have been living out of a suitcase in my car while circling among my daughter’s condominium in Bayonne and friends in Bradley Beach, while waiting for the closing on my new house in Neptune. It’s been a rough summer, I’ve always had a place to lay my head down. The whole vagabond thing was getting kind of old when…

Avon Church Demolished; Another One Scheduled to Close

  By PETE WALTON The former Taylor Memorial Baptist Church on Sylvania Avenue in Avon has been demolished by the borough. Mayor John B. Magrini said at this week’s meeting of the Board of Commissioners that he hoped the property could be ready for sale in September or soon thereafter. Borough Administrator Timothy M. Gallagher said that with the completion of the demolition, subdivision of the property can take place. The church was built in 1886 and initially called the First Baptist Church. After dwindling attendance in recent years, the church tried to find a buyer before conveying the property…

Beach Revenues Up $381,000 Over 2015

  By JOANNE L. PAPAIANNI Beach revenues are way up in Asbury Park as new attractions, hotels, restaurants and worldwide publicity have drawn bigger crowds. Not only is the beachfront benefiting from the influx, but downtown as well, where several new restaurants and breweries have opened. On holiday weekends in the summer finding a parking space can be challenging if not downright impossible. According to beach utilities manager Gary Giberson Sr. the total so far collected in beach pass sales this year has surpassed the 2015 season by $381,498. Overall there has been a 20 percent increase in the number…

Out of This World Experience

  It will be an out-of-this-world experience at the InfoAge Center in Wall Sun., Aug. 28 – literally a unique presentation about two first-time journeys into deep space. Frank O’Brien, a volunteer historian for NASA, will give a presentation about NASA’s New Horizons space probe journey to Pluto and its Dawn mission to Ceres. “The New Horizon’s journey to Pluto and Dawn’s mission to Ceres explored those ancient worlds. They found unexpected vistas, from frozen oceans of nitrogen to mountains of salt. These discoveries help confirm that the early solar system was a chaotic place with planets shifting positions and…

Oakhurst Fire Department Receives $66,000 Grant

  By DON STINE Ocean Township’s Oakhurst fire department will see upgrades to important safety equipment under a grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The department’s Board of Fire Commissioners applied to the Assistance To Firefighters grant program, administered through FEMA. The department received $66,165 in FEMA funding, which it has to match with a 10 percent, or $6,616, contribution. “This grant money saves taxpayers money. It’s a considerable amount that taxpayers otherwise would have to pay,” Fire District Administrator J. David Hiers said. The grant money will be used to upgrade breathing tank air-refill systems at both Oakhurst…

All Ocean Students Will Have Their Own Computers

  By DON STINE Improving reading, technical skills, and facility improvements are high on the list as Ocean Township opens its schools next month. “There’s lots of good stuff going on at Ocean right now,” Superintendent of Schools James Stefankiewicz said. This year the school district is introducing a new kindergarten through fifth grade literacy program. “We want to dramatically change how we deliver reading and writing instruction. Literacy is where it all begins and when kids learn to read and write well it carries over to other subject areas. We feel it’s important for students to read at grade…

City School District Has New Special Services Director

  By JOANNE L. PAPAIANNI Asbury Park school district will have a new director of special services when school opens next month. “I’m anxious for the new school year and looking forward to see our planning come to fruition,” said School Superintendent Dr. Lamont Repollet Repollet said one new major change is the addition of a new Director of Special Services. Carolyn Morano is coming the the city from Vernon and replacing interim director Roxanne Johnson. Repollet said the main goal of the new director will be to place students in the least restrictive educational environment as well was expand…

Remembering Sen. Joe Palaia

  By DON STINE One of Ocean Township’s most recognized and revered leaders, Joseph Palaia, died on Sat., Aug. 20. He was 89 years old. He was a former state assemblyman and state senator. “We will always remember our good friend Joe,” former Mayor William F. Larkin said earlier this week. “Joe is a legacy to Ocean Township. He always wanted the Deal Test Site to remain open space but he had no idea we would name the park there after him.” The former 208-acre U.S. Army test site, renamed for Palaia in 1998, was acquired by the township after…

Asbury Park Chamber Names New Director

  The Asbury Park Chamber of Commerce has named Sylvia Sylvia-Cioffi of Ocean Township as the new executive director. Outgoing Director, Jackie Pappas, shared her “excitement in having found a wonderfully experienced, passionate and energetic longtime fan of Asbury Park to fill the roll.” Pappas noted that, “Sylvia’s experience working with municipal government, local non-profits and the Board of Education will serve her well as she continues the Chamber’s mission to connect businesses, tourism, our youth and the community.” Chamber President Roy Werts described Sylvia as a “great addition to a strong team”. He thanked Director Pappas for all that…

Respect the Power of the Ocean

  By PETE WALTON and JOANNE L. PAPAIANNI Officials at the shore caution bathers never to underestimate the ocean following the rescue of four from the water in Asbury Park Sun., Aug. 14 and the apparent drowning of a man off Bradley Beach over the weekend. Bradley Beach Chief of Police Leonard Guida reminds those who want to swim at the borough’s beaches to respect the power of the ocean at all times. “It comes down to common sense,” Guida said. “Even if it appears calm, you always have to respect it. If you look at it that way, you…