by Gary Kapner, Borough Councilman
Last night we had another outstanding fireworks display on South Street. We couldn’t have asked for better weather. Thank you to Investors Bank. It’s their financial support that makes our Independence Day celebration possible. Dan White, Investors Branch Manager, and his staff, were having a great time out on South Street giving out glow sticks and talking to everyone in the community.
There are many volunteers and borough employees that made last night’s celebration possible and I’d like to take a minute, to let you know who there are and thank them. In addition to Investors Bank, the New Providence Business and Professional provides financial support. Michelle Brugger, the President of the New Providence Business and Professional Association, along with her husband Master B, owners of Martial Arts for Life, organized the entertainment and personally handed out chalk to every one of our young street artists. Karin Souren and her DJ husband John of Club Souren handled the music and provide all of the sound equipment. I’d like to thank Don and Eliza Murphy of NP Fuel for their hospitality, the use of the Jets trunk and all the beach balls. They were a big hit with the kids. Don told me he blew up every ball. Peter Rovtar of the Lantern Agency handled our insurance needs and Garden State Fireworks put on quite a show. A very big thank you to our Independence Day Committee chairman Ted Kapuscinski and his wife, Karen Luongo, of Kapuscinski and Luongo Architects, who did another fantastic job of coordinating and organizing our Independence Day Celebration.
The New Providence amateur radio club was on hand providing communications for event organizers. The New Providence Police Department did a fantastic job controlling traffic and keeping everyone safe. Chief Buccelli was out working the crowd – - did you have a chance to say hello to him? Special thanks to the New Providence Department of Public Works and Public Works Superintendent Jim Johnston. And let’s not forget to thank all the volunteer members of the New Providence Fire Department and First Aid Squad.
I hope you all had a really great Independence Day weekend!
by Edward Hopkins, The Alternative Press
NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ – The New Providence Pioneers finally got their fireworks fix for 2014. After threat of severe rain pushed back the annual Independence Day festivities originally scheduled for Thursday, New Providence residents took over South Street on Saturday to celebrate the nation’s birthday.
DJ John Souren of Club Souren, an event sponsor, played music from the truck bed of the NP Fuel Jets Truck. leis, wristbands, inflatable microphones, beach balls, and other items were thrown to the crowd who were dancing and singing below as juggler Will Shaw entertained the his many tricks.
While many danced and partied in the streets, local children were using the pavement as canvas, thanks to Michelle Brugger and Martial Arts for Life. The karate firm supplied dozens of children with cups of chalk to create temporary artwork.
“We did it just to give back to the community,” Brugger said. “The kids have a great time. Everybody really enjoys it. There’s something about closing down a main street and being able to color all over the place.
As darkness took over the sky, Garden State Fireworks took center stage, performing a 15-minute multi-shape and colored production over the Academy of Our Lady of Peace.
“It’s an awesome community event,” Investors Bank Vice-President Daniel M. White said. “It shows the collective support the bank gives out. I’m proud to sponsor this for the fifth year.”
New Providence Business & Professional Association, NP Fuel, KJS Design & Technology, Martial Arts for Life and Kapuscinki Luongo Architects also sponsored this year’s rendition of the annual event, and Don and Eliza Murphy of NP Fuel supplied beach balls and their Jets truck to assist in all the fun.
NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ – Parents, teachers and community members came out in force to Salt Brook School Elementary in New Providence for its third annual Big Basket Raffle on Saturday.
Extra hours were added for Salt Brook families on Friday, March 21 from 6 to 8 p.m. Last year’s event raised about $15,000.
Each of the 32 classes at Salt Brook School donated a basket. There was an array of prizes that included gift certificates, sports baskets, gourmet offerings, beauty supplies, and items for children including American Girl dolls and LEGOs. With 75 baskets displayed, a refreshment area, and a 50/50, there was something for everyone. Basket raffle tickets started at $1 each with 25 tickets for $20.00.
DJ John Souren (Club Souren), an alumnus of Salt Brook School, provided music to entertain guests during the Big Basket Raffle.
This year’s committee co-chairs were Kerry Fitzgerald and Paulette Beck. The committee also included Allison Smith, Kathy Verbaro, Jeanne Cook, and Deana Cumiskey. All of the women are mothers of Salt Brook students. To generate interest from the community, there was a lot of advance press, signs were posted locally and social media was used.
Fitzgerald said, “The community’s response has been excellent with donations and outstanding volunteer efforts. We appreciate everyone coming out for the event on their busy weekend.”
“It’s a great social event,” Verbaro said. “So many families came out today. It is especially nice that parents who are new to the school get a chance to meet members of the Salt Brook community.”
Cooke said, “It’s wonderful that the community came together to make terrific donations. The Salt Brook families have been so excited about the event.”
Paulette Beck commented, “The PTA makes very important contributions to the school. We have an Authors Day when a book author comes to the school to speak, and also sponsors a musical for the school.”
Kate and John Goldsmith of New Providence attended the Basket Raffle with their three children. One of their children attends Salt Brook Elementary School. John told TheAlternativePress.com, “This is our first time here. We’ve heard a lot of great things about it. We also like the opportunity to see our neighbors and friends.”
The Economic Development Committee hereby requests Council authorization to utilize Borough Professionals to study the feasibility of the ideas, concepts, and projects presented herein.
Our Downtown Business District objectives are to foster new ideas, facilitate communication and promote cooperation. The borough has resources and professional expertise available. We would like to partner with the business community and work as a team to accomplish mutually beneficial projects. Our goals are simple and attainable: ease of access for shoppers, open access parking, create additional parking, traffic management, consolidation of services, connectivity to the recreation area (tennis/pool/HS), and creation of green space. Having a well-organized, attractive downtown shopping district is an asset to everyone.
NEW PROVIDENCE – Martial Arts for life held Black Belt testing at the New Providence Recreation Center on Nov. 23. Nine students earned their first degree Black Belt and three students earned their second degree Black Belt. The graduates ranged in age from 11 to 14 years old.
The Black Belt exam consisted of physical fitness requirements which included a timed two mile run, performance of fifty sit-ups and fifty push-ups and multiple rounds of sparring or “free fighting” while wearing protective equipment. Students were also required to perform their entire martial arts curriculum from beginner to advanced level without mistakes. Children high school age or younger were required to have a “B” average in school as part of their academic requirements.
“This was a really special test. We had students who have been training since they were as young as 4 ½ years old in this group. To see them embracing the martial arts lifestyle and demonstrating such exceptional perseverance makes us very proud.” said Rich Brugger, who co-owns Martial Arts For Life with his wife Michelle. Co-owner Michelle Brugger added, “It really is a joy to watch these kids continue to grow and mature. We are very proud of them.”
Martial Arts For Life is located in the Village Shopping Center, 1260 Springfield Ave., in New Providence. For more information about Martial Arts For Life visit www.BeginKarate.com or call (908) 464–2836.
NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ – New Providence Business sponsored the annual 2013 Christmas Walk, held on Friday.
The event, sponsored by New Providence Business, ushered in the holiday season on a clear, cool November night.
Aida and John Swon of New Providence came downtown with their young children. The Swons felt that the Christmas walk was a very family-friendly event. Aida said that it was “exciting for the kids” and John said that it was “good community bonding.”
The festivities started at 4:30 p.m. with local shopkeepers welcoming everyone with treats, activities, and refreshments. The McGrath Family of McGrath’s Paint and Hardware provided popcorn for everyone just outside their store.
M& M Liquors provided bagpipe entertainment by Ian Rankine, who is also one of the pastors at the New Providence Presbyterian Church. Rankine enjoyed being a part of the evening and bringing his children, as well.
Bob Autenrieth, manager of Braunschweiger Jewelers, said, “The Christmas Walk is definitely a good idea. It gets people out in the neighborhood.” He also said that he loves to see the customers.
Chris Vergura of New Providence attended the event with her daughters, who enjoyed the crafts at the New Providence Presbyterian Church. “The children are having a great time,” Vergura said.
At 5 p.m., the Presbyterian Church was also the scene for many who enjoyed seeing live animals, including goats and sheep. A live Nativity scene took place at the church at 6:30 p.m.
At Ferdinand Jewelers, youngsters received green and red helium balloons while hot cider and donuts were served. Santa Claus made his annual stop at Ferdinand’s for children and their families to visit.
There was plenty of excitement as Santa Claus arrived in town at 6 p.m. on the rooftop of Provident Bank on South Street. The crowd cheered as Santa waved to everyone while the Pioneer Band of New Providence High School played “Santa Claus is Coming to Town.” The high school band also led a parade with the New Providence Fire Department to thrill the crowd.
As the holiday season continues, area residents can take advantage of the many shopping and dining opportunities that are available in downtown New Providence.
New Providence Business is a group of merchants and business professionals who work together to make the town a premier place for families and shopping. Their theme, “Small Community, Big Choices,” was realized at the Christmas Walk with a large turnout from the public.
Join us for this year’s Annual Christmas Walk in downtown New Providence!
Please come out and join us on Friday, November 29th, in kicking off the holiday season! Come watch Santa arrive in town with a parade led by the Pioneer Band and the NPFD.
The kids can also enjoy Christmas Carolers, a stilt walker, sand art and more!
- Treats, activities & refreshments at 4:30 p.m.
New Providence shop keepers will be welcoming everyone beginning at 4:30pm with treats, activities and refreshments.
- Live animals starting at 5 p.m. at the Presbyterian Church
- Santa arrives at 6:00 p.m. at Provident Bank on South Street
- Live Nativity at 6:30 p.m. at the Presbyterian Church
NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ – Hundreds of children flocked to downtown New Providence on Halloween for the annual trick or treat event hosted by the New Providence Business community.
Many New Providence businesses opened their doors for the ghosts, ghouls and goblins, and business owners provided treats to all. Even the threat of rain could not deter the children from their sugar-filled mission.
Jimmy Vardas, President of the New Providence Downtown Improvement District, said, “It was a pleasure seeing kids with smiling faces and adorable costumes go trick or treating downtown. i am sure all those who visited as well as the merchants who were handing out Halloween candy non-stop had a wonderful time.”
This year, participating stores in town displayed an orange pumpkin in their windows to let children and parents know that the business was participating in this year’s festivities.
Six-year old Shayne, who was dressed as SpongeBob Squarepants, told TheAlternativePress.com, “The businesses gave out so many delicious treats. The kids had fun. Thank you!”
Popular costumes this year included ninjas, princesses, Steve (Mindcraft), and Woody (Toy Story).
Michelle Brugger, President of the New Providence Business & Professional Association, told TheAlternativePress.com, “I would first and foremost like to thank the New Providence Business Community and the New Providence Police Department for creating a fun and safe place for the kids of New Providence to come out and Trick or Treat. Without either of those organizations, great events like these would never happen!”
She continued, “The New Providence Police Department did a great job of crossing the kids and the families and keeping everyone safe. All merchants in the Business Community handed out great candy! I heard lots of kids talking about what they got! It was so nice to see all the kids dressed up in their awesome costumes.”
“We missed two Halloweens in a row so it was a nice feeling to be able to host again and see everyone out having fun, getting great candy, and enjoying downtown New Providence. We are looking forward to 2014!” she concluded.
You are invited
to wear your costumes to
in Downtown New Providence
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 31st
3:00 to 5:00 PM
~ Rain or Shine ~
Look for the Stores with a ORANGE PUMPKIN
in the Window or on the Door
Did You Know…?
The NPBPA is also responsible for the summer concert series “Family Fun Night” at Centennial Park thanks to the sponsorship of Braunschweiger Jewelers, Creative Wall Coverings, Elefante Music, Lassus Wherley, Prestige Diner, Prudential, Dr Robert Robinson, The New Providence Downtown Improvement District, The Lions Club and Zita’s Ice Cream.