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In Neptune City: $360,000 School Referendum Question on Nov. 4 Ballot

  By JOSEPH SAPIA and DON STINE Neptune City voters are being asked to approve a $360,000 referendum in the Nov. 4 general election to restore some teaching positions and extra-curricular activities at the Woodrow Wilson Elementary School- an amount that will add about $175 to the average school tax bill. About 50 people turned out for an informational meeting held by the Board of Education at the school Tuesday night, of which about 20 were local educational association members showing their support for the referendum. School Board President Christine Oppegaard said the Wilson School is in a “crisis situation”…

Fund-Raising Campaign Begins for Bradley Food Pantry

  Pictured above: Volunteers at the Bradley Beach Food Pantry. Photo courtesy of bradleybeachfoodpantry.org. By JOSEPH SAPIA No one should go to sleep at night without someone having his or her back. That is what is guiding George Moffett in his project to improve the Bradley Food Pantry, specifically leading an effort to raise $16,000 for refrigerator and freezer units. The money would fully support replacing a refrigerator-freezer in the pantry and to install a walk-in freezer in the basement, replacing three chest freezers. The current units are in some way inefficient, according to the pantry. “I don’t think there’s…

Professionals by Day, Derby Skaters at Night

  By JOSEPH SAPIA Kim Predham does not think of herself as an athlete. When she was growing up in Neptune City, she was the last one picked when teams were chosen. She considered herself “very bookish.” “(But) I always liked roller-skating as a kid,” Predham said. “I would skate for hours in my basement.” Those hours of roller-skating were put to good use. Now, at 32, the Asbury Park resident is a local version of a roller derby queen, as is her teammate, Jessica O’Hanlon, 37, of Avon. O’Hanlon, skating under the name Anna Stesia because she is a…

Bradley Beach Food Pantry Founder Turning 100

  By JOSEPH SAPIA If you can spare a hundred, the Bradley Food Pantry is ready to take it off your hands. The 100, in honor of founder Eleanor Pierson turning 100-years-old Friday, Sept. 19, can be in various forms, such as $100, 100 dimes, 100 cans of food, 100 minutes or hours of volunteerism and so on. Or more or less than 100. “There’s no cutoff,” said pantry director Linda Curtiss. “It’s really celebrating the legacy of what she created.” The Bradley Food Pantry, which sits on the grounds of St. James Episcopal Church, at the corner of 4th…

14-Year-Old Girl Charged with Driving Without License

  By JOSEPH SAPIA Allenhurst Police, while working on a driving while intoxicated-enforcement detail, stopped a vehicle for going erratically — and found a 14-year-old driving. The Neptune girl had taken her mother’s vehicle without her permission, police said. A 17-year-old also was riding in the car, police said. The 14-year-old was charged with driving while unlicensed, taking a vehicle without the owner’s consent, failure to keep right, failure to signal a turn and having improper maintenance of lights, police said. The vehicle’s owner responded and took custody of both juveniles, police said. Patrolman First Class Michael DiBona and Patrolman…

Asbury Park Police Get Involved with Youth

  By JOSEPH SAPIA In response to Asbury Park Police Officer Tyron McAllister’s belted-out instructions, a group of kids lined up and, then, sat down for lunch in the Salvation Army gym. This was a normal day at the city’s Summer Youth Boot Camp, run by an active, but perhaps generally unknown, Police Department unit, the Community Relations Unit. “We promote a positive image for the police department,” said Patrolman Michael Casey, 42, who has been in the unit for six of his 10 years on the department. “We are not only about making arrests. We’re here to improve the…

Thousands Attend Lobster Fest in Bradley Beach

  By JOSEPH SAPIA Bradley Beach’s sixth annual Lobster Fest, held Saturday and Sunday, July 12 and 13, drew its biggest crowd ever, about 40,000 people. That was about 10,000 more than in 2013, said Brenda Connolly, president of the Bradley Beach Chamber of Commerce, which sponsors the food and entertainment gathering along the beachfront. “The weather was spectacular on Saturday,” Connolly said. “It got a little iffy on Sunday, but it wasn’t bad.” The chamber was still figuring out how much money was brought in, Connolly said. She said the festival is used as a fund-raising event for the…

Fox, Heron and Deer; Welcome to Shark River Hills

  By JOSEPH SAPIA When Mike Reid was moving to the Shark River Hills section of Neptune earlier this year, he was struck by the wildlife. “The amount of footprints I saw in my driveway,” Reid said. “I saw a red fox go by a house about 5:30 (in the morning),” said Reid, 49. “I see a lot of groundhogs and possums.” And he’s not the only one. Shea Eastwick, 35, who grew up in the Hills, knows there’s plenty of wildlife in the area. “Chipmunks, squirrels, birds, the rabbits, raccoons,” Eastwick said. “Recently, a fox has been stopping by.…

Summer at the Shore: Ready, Set, Go

  By JOSEPH SAPIA On Tuesday, Joanne Letson was planting canna flowers and palms at the “Bradley Beach sign” on the oceanfront. Earlier, she had planted marigolds and begonias in the area. Soon, the B-R-A-D-L-E-Y B-E-A-C-H lettering sitting in the flower bed would be getting a coat of white paint. “I go to the beach frequently,” said Letson, 54, who works for the Bradley Beach public works department. “Probably everyday in season.” In-season is upon us: Memorial Day Weekend. “Start of summer, Opening Day,” said Rick Wlazlowski, 19, a Wall resident who was surfing earlier this week at Avon. “Everything…

These Knights Ride to Raise Money for Charities

  By JOSEPH SAPIA When one thinks of the Roman Catholic men’s group, the Knights of Columbus, one may think of members collecting money for charity on roadsides or dressed in ceremonial costumes of cape, hat with ostrich feathers and sword. But riding motorcycles? In New Jersey, the state Knights of Columbus Motorcycle Ministry has existed since 2008, said Mark “Bozz” Bozzo of Bradley Beach. Since June, the 61-year-old business owner — he owns New Jersey Retractable Awnings in Wall — has been president of the approximately 180-member state ministry. This ministry is just an extension of Knights of Columbus…

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