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City Footbridge Will Be Replaced

  By DON STINE The historic wooden footbridge over Sunset Lake in Asbury Park, once a trolley bridge, is scheduled to be totally replaced next year after it was seriously damaged during Superstorm Sandy. Christine Ballard, with the city engineering firm of T&M Associates, told city officials recently that the estimated $900,000 project will probably receive a 90 percent cost reimbursement under the Federal Emergency Management Agency program. She said she expects the reimbursement will be received if the bridge is done with “full replacement in-kind,” which means the historic bridge will be replaced just as it is except for…

2 Neptune GOP Write-In Candidates Decline to Run

  By DON STINE Former Neptune Mayor Thomas Catley and Ocena Grove attorney Donald Beekman on June 8 announced that they will not accept their recent write-in nominations to be placed on the ballot for two seats on the Neptune Township Committee. The two men, who are the vice-chairman and chairman of the local Republican Party respectively, said they will, instead, support the “Coalition For Change in Neptune” ticket, which includes both a Republican and Democratic candidate. Residents Dianna Harris, president of the Midtown Urban Renaissance Corporation (MURC) and a Democrat, and Kevin Sheehan, a former Republican candidate, have formed…

Want Special Backstage Seating? See a Concert at the Paramount

  By DON STINE If you ever wanted to be onstage or backstage during a concert by your favorite performer, then you might want to check out the unique concert series beginning at the Paramount Theatre in Asbury Park. The “Where The Audience And The Music Share The Stage” series begins Sat., June 13 with a peformance by Williams Honor on June 13. The series is followed by Graham Parker on June 27; Marshall Crenshaw on July 25; and Loudon Wainwright III on Aug. 22. Concert promoter Sammy Boyd of Allenhurst said that the 200 limited-seating audience will actually be…

Dredging of River Channel is Expected

  By DON STINE A contract to dredge about 106,000 cubic yards of sediment from the environmentally-beleaguered Shark River is expected to be awarded later this summer, according to area legislators. “This project is closer to reality than ever before. This is a result of years of work coordinating with the many agencies that have authority over this project. This project focuses on what we can do- dredge the state navigation channels of the river,” said Monmouth County Freeholder Thomas A. Arnone, a former Neptune City Mayor. “A project like this has to have full cooperation from the federal, state,…

St. Augustine’s Episcopal Church Celebrating 125 Years

  By DON STINE For 125 years, St. Augustine’s Episcopal Church, on the West Side of Asbury Park, has been serving the Lord and its community and plans to continue doing the same into the future. Church vestry member Carolann Nicholas said the church, now with a congregation of about 150, remains an important part of Asbury Park to this day. “It still has a place in the community and is still vital today just as it has been in the past. And if it disappeared, we would be missed. We are a part of the community and people recognize…

Community Urged to Participate in $3.4 Million Literacy Program

  By DON STINE Parents and community members are being urged to participate in a $3.4 million comprehensive literacy improvement program being implemented in Asbury Park’s school district. “We need a specific intervention to take place because three out of four of our students do not read at grade level,” said Sancha Gray, the school district’s director of curriculum and instruction. Residents, especially parents, were invited to the first annual Parent Literacy Conference held at the Middle School Sat., May 30. The event is a kick off the district’s new $3.4 million initiative to improve literacy and reading skills in…

Landmark Venues Open for Season

  By DON STINE Asbury Park’s iconic Convention Hall and Paramount Theatre on the city’s boardwalk will remain open this season as work on installing fire sprinklers continues in the historic complex. And while the landmark building, owned by boardwalk redeveloper Madison Marquette, is 85-years-old, it still needs to be up to state fire safety codes, officials said. Fire Chief Kevin Keddy said the complex had to have sprinklers installed because of its public use under state fire prevention codes and it was agreed that the project would be done in phases. “They are right on schedule and meeting their…

No Parking Zone Considered in City

  By DON STINE A one-block area in front of the Boys and Girls Club of Monmouth County in Asbury Park is being considered as a possible no parking zone under a plan presented by city police earlier this week. Acting Police Chief Anthony Salerno said the no parking designation would help traffic flow in the busy area, including alleviating crowded conditions for buses on the narrow street. “It is a very difficult roadway to navigate,” he said. The one-block no parking zone would extend along the north side of Monroe Avenue, from Ridge to Prospect Avenues. The area contains…

Stolen Copper Panels Case Closed

  By DON STINE Two separate investigations into the theft of about six tons of copper panels from Asbury Park’s historic Convention Hall have officially been closed, which now allows boardwalk redeveloper Madison Marquette to be paid its claim for the loss. Acting Police Chief Anthony Salerno said earlier this week that both the city’s police department and the state’s Division of Criminal Justice have officially closed their cases. “[Madison Marquette] can and should report their claim to the appropriate insurance company,” he said. The city’s Historical Society had recently looked into the matter and discovered, with the help of…

Karaoke Contest at Sudsy Mug

  By DON STINE If you like karaoke, whether singing it or just being entertained by it, then you might head over to the Sudsy Mug in Neptune in the near future. The tavern, at 1105 Sixth Ave., is hosting a karaoke contest on Sat., May 23 and May 30, with a grand finale competition on Sat., June 6. “It’s the big weekend Memorial Day bash this weekend so what better way to celebrate it than with karaoke. And anybody can enter the contest,” Sudsy Mug owner Lynn Kieran said. And while karaoke has been a weekly event at the…

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