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Booker’s Message: Never Forget Your Roots

  By JOSEPH SAPIA When Cory A. Booker won his seat in Washington, as one of New Jersey’s two U.S. Senators, he may have had a new title and made a name for himself. But, as he recalled, he was advised to remember his history. Booker’s parents, Carolyn and Cary, taught Booker and his elder brother, Cary II, the history of people of color in general and, specifically, family history. “Both my parents wanted us to know who we were,” Booker said in remarks before an estimated 400 at a Martin Luther King Jr. Day celebration Monday in Asbury Park.…

Police Investigating 30 Burglaries in Ocean Grove

  More than 30 break-ins and burglaries have been reported in Ocean Grove in the last three and a-half months and while police are actively looking for the perpetrators, they urge residents to use due diligence in protecting their properties. “Everybody is working on this. It is not something where we are just sitting back and taking reports on break-ins. We are on this,” said Neptune’s Chief Financial Officer Michael Bascom, who is also the township’s acting-police director. Bascom also said residents should be mindful not to provide criminals with opportunities to commit crimes. “These are crimes of opportunity with…

Neptune Seeks $80,000 Grant to Fight Marijuana Use by Teens

  By DON STINE Marijuana is the most common illegal drug being used by Neptune teenagers today and the township’s Municipal Alliance to Prevent Alcohol and Drug Abuse is seeking an $80,000 grant to help combat the problem. Alliance coordinator Dawn Thompson told the Township Committee Monday night that the alliance hopes to fight the problem and has applied for an $80,000 grant from the Governor’s Council On Alcoholism and Drug Abuse, which is funded through fines imposed when people are arrested for impaired driving. “We put together a pretty intense package that is pretty comprehensive, it outlines some of…

New City Manager Looks Forward to Taking Post February 1

  By DON STINE John “Jack” Kelly, the former Jersey City business administrator and soon to be the new Asbury Park City Manager, said he wants “to hit the ground running” when he takes over on Feb. 1. Kelly was unanimously appointed to the job at the City Council meeting two weeks ago and he will replace Acting-City Manager Tony Nuccio, who heads the human services department. Kelly, who was also worked in the Orange finance office for 21 years, replaces Terence Reidy who held the job for 10 years and left the post Oct. 31. “I want to try…

Upstage Club for Sale

  By DON STINE The legendary Upstage Club in downtown Asbury Park, where rock ‘n roll icons like Bruce Springsteen and Southside Johnny Lyon got their musical start as teenagers, is up for sale. Current owner, antique dealer Richard Yorkowitz, called his decision to sell the building “heartbreaking.” “There is no one specific person or town to blame- it’s overall personal circumstances that led to my decision,” he said. Yorkowitz said it his decision to put the building up for sale was made “with much deliberation” and that he hopes whoever buys it will continue with his vision to reopen…

Ocean Grove Wins Boardwalk Appeal

  By DON STINE Ocean Grove officials announced this week that the Federal Emergency Management Agency has overturned a previous ruling and has now determined that the historic district is eligible for federal funding to repair its boardwalk, which was damaged during Superstorm Sandy in 2012. “We are delighted and grateful to have just recently learned that FEMA has determined that the (Ocean Grove) Camp Meeting Association is eligible for assistance in funding of the boardwalk restoration. Although this eligibility determination does not guarantee us full funding from FEMA, it does allow us to proceed further in the process,” said…

Shark River Hills Family Returns Home After Sandy

  By RICHARD VIRGILIO Coastal Habitat for Humanity, along with local community leaders and partner organizations, came together recently to celebrate a Shark River Family’s return home after more than a year’s displacement due to Superstorm Sandy. “After Sandy, our home looked like someone took a dollhouse and shook it,” said Tracy Antman, Coastal Habitat’s partner homeowner. “We are just your average, middle class family that was used to doing for other people. But when it came time for us to ask for help to make our home livable again, we heard ‘declined’ from every place imaginable – until Coastal…

Deal Administrator Retires; Former Police Chief Named to Post

  By DON STINE Deal Borough Administrator James Rogers has retired from his position after serving the borough for 15 years. “I felt it was time to reduce my activities,” said Rogers, who is 74. He was formerly a vice president of sales and marketing for a paint company. “I always got a great deal of satisfaction out of my job as borough administrator and I did enjoy it,” he said. Retired borough police chief Stephen Carasia has been appointed to the position. Rogers said some of the major accomplishments under his tenure were renovating Borough Hall and building a…

D’Arcy’s Tavern Plans Dining Deck

  By JOSEPH SAPIA Work continues at D’Arcy’s Tavern on Bradley Beach’s Main Street, an old-style, Shore tavern closed for renovations since Jan. 2, and has a target of March 1 to re-open, according to an owner. Tom McGill said the renovations include turning the upstairs over the bar area into a banquet room with a bar. That upstairs area, which had been an apartment and was used for storage, would be available as an overflow area from the downstairs or a rental room, McGill said. Off the upstairs room, or what is now the roof of the first-floor dining…