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Clifton Merchant Magazine • Volume 11 • issue 4 • April 1, 2005


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In a traditional city like Clifton, Rev. Hank Dwyer was a colorful liberal who made many diverse friends, earned and gave respect and accomplished much. A celebration of the life and times of Rev. Dwyer— friend, husband, father, 12th rector of St. Peter’s Episcopal Church, counselor, advocate, common guy... the list goes on—was noted at his memorial service. His sudden death on March 24 at the age of 58 shook the rafters at St. Peter’s and reverberated well beyond the boundaries of our city. Hank, as he preferred to be called, put his signature on the Clifton Ave. house of worship from when he was first officially introduced there on December 13, 1998. He called it Clifton’s Welcoming Church and from then on, Hank opened the doors wide to bring many into its fold to worship and to support his beloved St. Peter’s Haven, Clifton’s homeless shelter and food pantry. I was just one of the many folks attracted to Hank’s good will, his unique message of Christianity and his purposeful walk upon our earth.

While his death leaves a void in our community, we must continue to keep Rev. Hank Dwyer’s memory eternal and his mission of good will alive and prosperous. One way to do so is to send donations or bring gifts of non-perishable food to St. Peter’s Haven, 380 Clifton Ave., Clifton, NJ 07011. Hank Dwyer is survived by his wife Marianne and their children Ellen Hemrick, sons Christopher and Kevin; also his parents Harold and Emma, a brother Richard, a sister Karen and a grandson, Sumner Hensley. by Tom Hawrylko 16,000 MAGAZINES are distributed to hundreds of Clifton Merchants the first Friday of Every Month. HOME DELIVERY $15/year in Clifton $25/year out of town CALL 973-253-4400 entire contents copyright 2005 © tomahawk promotions

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Clifton Merchant Magazine is published monthly at 1288 Main Ave., Downtown Clifton • 973-253-4400


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April 2005 • Clifton Merchant


Opinion

by Editor and Publisher Tom Hawrylko

Missed opportunity in Downtown Clifton. The old Herald News building on the Clifton-Passaic border will soon become a Passaic Public School. Ground will be broken for the three story structure within 90 days. About a year ago, the Clifton City Council had the opportunity to broker a deal on this vacant Main Ave. structure when the NJ Schools Construction Corporation announced it wanted to use it for a Passaic elementary school. Clifton officials quickly said no and offered no counter offer. I suggested it was a good time to sit with the NJSCC, Passaic County and Passaic city officials and discuss redeveloping the newspaper building along with the adjacent pool. That fell on deaf ears and we missed another opportunity. The $8,000 I told you so. A consultant being paid about $8,000 to evaluate the idea of the city purchasing the two-acre Bellin’s Pool next to the Herald News has advised the City Council it’s not a good idea. Did we really need a consultant to tell us a 72-year-old pool was a bad investment?

Welcome To Clifton?

Are the Kids Worth It?

S

chool Budget time is here again and the question on April 19 is clear: are Clifton kids worth your vote? I ask you to vote yes and once again show support for our kids, and the very bedrock of our community, the Clifton Public Schools. Over the past two years, residents have passed budgets which have decreased class size and introduced full day kindergarten. This past December, we endorsed a referendum to purchase and retrofit a Brighton Rd. property into a 500-student annex to relieve some of the overcrowding at CHS. Let’s keep that momentum going. Please vote yes to a budget which adds full day kindergarten in four more schools and keeps class sizes at acceptable levels. Strong Clifton Public Schools will keep property values high and keep our community positioned as a desirable, middle class city for the 21st century. Finally, turn to page 30 and note that our district spends nearly $2,000 less per pupil than the state average, delivering a responsible and costeffective education. Invest in our public schools to keep Clifton strong. In last month’s magazine we published this picture at left of the former Goodyear building on Main Ave. and questioned how long will it take for the city to get on the property owner to paint the graffiti and fix other problems on the land. The photo below is how the graffiti was corrected. Do you find this acceptable?

This old Goodyear Tire building across from Main Memorial Park is going to be knocked down soon, city officials report. A bank will be built in its place. So why make the owner clean it up to code, they ask? Here’s why: sections of the sidewalk around the property are missing and uneven, filled in with gravel. It’s dangerous. The graffiti was white-washed in a most unprofessional way. It looks bad. How do some property owners get away with stuff like this while others are held accountable to the letter of the law? Clifton Merchant • April 2005

5


Who Can Afford to Run for City

Council? Story by Tom Hawrylko

Frank Gaccione

James Anzaldi

$53,776

$36,425

I Donald Kowal

$27,220 6

April 2005 • Clifton Merchant

f there were awards for creativity in the 2002 City Council campaign, Frank Gaccione surely would have been the top winner. Managing the largest war chest of 12 candidates, Gaccione and his volunteer campaign committee so precisely fine-tuned a message, they even sent cards to the owners of Clifton hounds. “It was weird and ingenious,” Rosemawr resident and Basset Hound owner Susan Angello recalled of the mailing she received. “It either had a photo of he and his dog or a paw print on it. I just thought it was interesting how he went out to animal lovers.” Did the gimmick work? “I did vote for him,” Angello confirmed. “I wanted to see a new face on the Council.”


Stefan Tatarenko

Eddie Welsh

$24,184

$22,463

Numbers shown here and on next page are Total Expenditures for the 2002 City Council race as reported by each candidate to (ELEC) New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission.

Steve Hatala

Gloria Kolodziej

$21,909

$17,415

Gaccione, owner of a construction company, was successful in his first bid for the Clifton City Council. From a field of 12 in which seven were elected, he received 5,352 votes, placing seventh. He won the seat which was vacated by Peter Eagler, a Passaic County Freeholder who went on to serve as a NJ Assemblyman.

As a relative newcomer introducing himself to Clifton’s 40,000 registered voters, Gaccione raised and spent nearly $54,000. While that amount may seem excessive to some, politicians and challengers considering a 2006 run for Council said that in a non-partisan election, that figure may be high but not unrealistic.

Clifton Merchant • April 2005

7


Even Unsuccessful Candidates Spent a Lot of Money Alina Bladek

Beverly Cholewczynski

$17,045

$10,015

Douglas Burg

Bob Sidoti

$0

$13,668

Frank Fusco

$0

Candidates who use their own funds or spend under $3,000 must file a sworn statement and thus reported $0 expenses. Go to www.elec.state.nj.us/ for specific details.

“I don’t blame Gaccione for spending the money,” said Matt Ward who is considering a 2006 run for City Council. “At-large campaigns are expensive because you have to have build strength and recognition all over the city. How do you build it? Mailings, advertising. And when all is said and done, it’s a free speech issue.”

2002 City Council Election Results

*Incumbent

8

James Anzaldi * Gloria J. Kolodziej * Steven Hatala Jr. * Ed Welsh * Don Kowal * Stefan Tatarenko * Frank Gaccione

8,899 7,375 6,535 6,326 5,895 5,701 5,352

Bob Sidoti Alina Bladek Beverly J. Cholewczynski Frank C. Fusco Douglas H. Burg

4,352 4,050 3,768 2,914 1,727

April 2005 • Clifton Merchant

“Are you ready to open this can of worms? Start turing the can opener. It is a big can and these things are going to crawl all over the place.” –Councilman Frank Gaccione

Beyond the mailing to puppy owners (and an expense of $44.49 for biscuits which he handed out at a city-sponsored dog clinic), Gaccione illustrated how easy it is to go through campaign funds, especially for someone that does not have the name recognition and visibility an incumbent office holder has. “To mail to just half the registered voters—20,000 homes at about 40 cents each, that’s 8,000 bucks,” calculated Gaccione. “Three mailings equals $24,000. That’s before the hand outs, the newspaper ads, the signs. So you have to look realistically at what it cost to reach 40,000 registered voters.” Gaccione is not alone in the high cost of campaigning. In fact the average amount spent by a winning Council candidate was nearly $26,000. James Anzaldi, who became the first four-term Mayor in the city’s history in 2002, also was an ambitious fund raiser, spending over $36,000. “It doesn’t have to be so expensive,” he lamented. “But the law allows it.”


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Typical Campaign Expenditures • • • • • •

Advertisements Paper / printing / mailing labels Postage for mailings Food, drink, etc. for rallies Election night parties Tickets to various dinners (civic / school / business charitable / political) • Lawn Signs • Giveaways (pens, t-shirts, etc.) • Contributions to other candidates Councilwoman Gloria Kolodziej reported the lowest amount of the six successful incumbents: $17,415. However, with the next election on the near horizon—May 7, 2006—in which all seven of the Council members again face reelection, Kolodziej has introduced a proposal to put a limit on campaign spending. Under her proposal, the limit would be created by totalling the amount spent by all candidates in the 2002 election and dividing it by 12—the number of candidates. Using this formula, candidates in the 2006 campaign would have a spending lid of about $20,000. She also wants to see a stricter reporting process, one which makes public record of all contributors who give $100 or more to a candidate. Right now, only those individuals, companies or groups who donate $400 or more to any candidate are listed on reports filed with ELEC, the NJ Election Law Enforcement Commission. Another aspect of Kolodziej’s proposal deals with pay to play, limiting from whom politicians can accept donations. The proposals are being reviewed by the city’s law department and Kolodziej expects it will be presented to the Council this month. Her goal, said Kolodziej, is to provide a level field of competition for both incumbents and challengers. “It pains me to know that there are people out there who would make a darn good Council member or Board member but lack the will to run for office because of the formidable task of raising the finances that have become characteristic of these races,” said Kolodziej. “The amount of money spent on local elections has become obscene.” 10

April 2005 • Clifton Merchant

• Hall and/or campaign office rental for campaign activities. • Phone service (e.g., “get out the vote” calls)

“I wish I could be reelected without raising a dollar, without advertising. It is unfortunate but propaganda works.” –Councilman Stefan Tatarenko

What are the chances of Kolodziej’s proposal becoming law? “I expect this to receive a lukewarm reception and that’s being kind,” predicted the six term Councilwoman. When asked if he would favor limits on campaign spending, Councilman Frank Gaccione said he was unsure of the exact figure proposed by Kolodziej and remained uncommitted. “When she writes it (the ordinance), we’ll look at it and we’ll see if it is a number we can live with it,” he said, adding; “Until I run again, I don’t know what the right number is.” Without mentioning Kolodziej by name, he continued: “It becomes a little hypocritical when certain individuals who are requesting campaign finance limits are not accurate in their own campaign reporting.” Asked how a politician would not be accurate in the accounting of funds raised, Gaccione presented a scenario. He said a politician’s supporter could host a party at a home in which there is a donation requested from those who attend. The supporter pays for all the expenses and entertainment and contributions are collected by the politician while no report of those expenses is filed with ELEC. “Is that legal?” he asked.


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“Are you ready to open this can of worms?” Gaccione continued. “Start turning the can opener. It is a big can and these things are going to crawl all over the place. I am not going to pull any punches with this. When I do something I do it neat and clean but when you want to challenge that, you better be neat and clean yourself. I will say this: I think that if we follow the campaign spending laws spelled out by ELEC, they are fair, just and adequate.”

I

f an informal poll of City Council members is any indication, it is not likely that Kolodziej’s proposal will get the four votes it needs to become law. In separate interviews, Councilmen Steve Hatala, Stefan Tatarenko and Ed Welsh seemed to agree with Gaccione’s position: campaign spending limits are not needed and they would not support legislation for it.

–Mayor Jim Anzaldi

“I have something that a challenger does not—four years on tv and name recognition,” he said. “How do they compete with seven known factors? If someone wants to run, unfortunately, it does not come for free.” Said Ed Welsh: “I am opposed to it. If I were a 23 year incumbent, I’d propose a $900 per candidate, three lawn sign limit too. Donations are a way for people to show their support for you. I don’t think anyone on this governing body is for sale.” Stefan Tatarenko said while he is not happy with the large sums of money it takes to run a campaign, costly direct mail pieces and newspaper advertisements are the primary ways to reach a changing population. That’s why he would not support a spending limit. “There is a small segment of the community who are very involved and knowledgeable and than there is a larger segment who are not tuned in, who need information on the candidates and the issues,” Tatarenko said. “How do you reach them? I wish I could be reelected without raising a dollar, without advertising. It is unfortunate but propaganda works.”

☛ 1176

“For me as an incumbent, I say go ahead and put a $500 max on spending,” said Hatala, noting he is not actually in favor of a cap on spending. “But I’m on tv every two weeks, people call me up and say ‘hey I got a problem, can you help me out?’ I tell you, what this will do is close the door on a challenger trying to get their message out.” Hatala, who was elected to the Board of Education three times and to the City Council first in 1998 then again in 2002, said a challenger needs a larger war chest in order to be competitive.

“It doesn’t have to be so expensive. But the law allows it.”

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A

fter calculating various scenarios related to Kolodziej’s proposal, Mayor Jim Anzaldi finally confirmed he would support a spending limit of about $25,000. “If it’s $15,000 that’s reasonable too,” he said. But as far as listing every contributor of $100 or more? “I think we would be creating a bureaucracy,” predicted Anzaldi. “Perhaps $200 or $250. Let’s face it, these days, $400 is not a great deal of money.” He does have a concern with the pay to play proposal. “If it limits a city employee from coming to a cocktail party, I do not think that would be fair. It limits their rights,” said Anzaldi, first elected to the Council in 1978. “I have no problem in limiting contributions from vendors or those who provide professional services to the city. And I certainly think that public employee unions and PACs should be included.” Don Kowal, who ran and won his first race in 1990, said that other “then dickering as to what the amount should be,” he would support Kolodziej’s campaign spending limits proposal. But he shared a concern the others did: spending limits are unfair to newcomers. He understands first hand how tough it can be to win a seat as the challenger to a group of incumbents. “Back in 1990 as a virtual unknown I spent about $37,000,” said Kowal. He conducted three city-wide mailings and seven targeted mailings. “We did over 75,000 pieces of mail that year,” he recalled.

The Corzine Factor The largest donation of the 2002 Clifton City Council campaign came from an unlikely source: a political action committee or PAC headed by US Senator Jon Corzine. And his contribution of $2,200— the maximum under ELEC regulations—went to Councilwoman Gloria Kolodziej. She explained: “I had raised $7,000 on my own and was watching the runaway spending by my colleagues. I knew I had to raise $15,000 to remain competitive.” The question, Kolodziej recalled, was who to turn to for help. She said local self-interest groups headed by developers, lawyers and union groups were not an option. “I would not ask those type of people and they would not come to me,” claimed Kolodziej. That’s when she sent a letter to Corzine, whom she first met in 2000 when she endorsed him in the Senate primary. “He was bucking the system. We bonded,” recalled Kolodziej. After a follow-up phone call explaining the political predicament, she received the check on April 22, 2002, about three weeks before election day. “I never thought I would have to ask him for anything. I was surprised by the size of it but without his donation and one other, I would not have been able to do a city-wide mailing,” Kolodziej claimed.

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April 2005 • Clifton Merchant

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F

or some 32 years now, Anthony A. Accavallo, shown here, has been helping make the American Dream become a reality, right here in Clifton. As President of Federal Mortgage & Investment Corp. at 1111 Clifton Ave., Clifton, he and his firm have written millions of dollars worth of mortgages which have allowed people to purchase homes. And while that work has been fulfilling, Accavallo said he is getting his greatest satisfaction these days by helping senior citizens with reverse mortgages. A reverse mortgage is a special kind of mortgage loan for seniors. “It is a safe, easy way to turn your home equity into tax-free cash,” he continued.

“Unlike a home equity loan, you do not have to make monthly payments. Instead, a reverse mortgage pays you. More importantly, you do not have to repay the loan for as long as you live in the house. It’s a great way to keep your home and get money from it at the same time.” The name “reverse mortgage” describes exactly what the mortgage is — it is the exact opposite of a conventional mortgage. That is, with a conventional mortgage the borrower pays the lender but with a reverse mortgage, the lender pays the borrower. In the past, a senior citizen in need of money would have to take out a loan against their house and immediately start making monthly payments again or sell their home.

How do I qualify for a Reverse Mortgage? It’s simple. You and your co-borrower must be at least 62 years old. You must own your home free and clear or have just a small balance on your existing mortgage. Best of all, there are no income or credit requirements to satisfy. How can I receive my money? You can receive it in several ways: •Equal monthly payments as long as you live in your home •Equal monthly payments for a certain period of time •As a line of credit you can draw upon as needed, for whatever reasons •As a lump sum draw at closing •A combination of the above, to meet your requirements.

But a reverse mortgage allows seniors to borrow against the equity they already have in their home... and they never have to make a monthly payment. Each reverse mortgage candidate is required to attend a free counseling session with a local independent housing agency approved by FHA (Federal Housing Administration). Candidates are encouraged to bring other family members with them to help in the decision-making process. “This process ensures that the borrower understands the program fully and aides them in determining whether or not a reverse mortgage is for them,” said Accavallo.

When must I repay the loan? You must repay the loan if you no longer live in your home. In the event of your death, your heirs can choose to repay the loan and keep the house or sell the house and repay the loan, What are interest rate charges & fees? •An adjustable rate of interest is charged on reverse mortgages •Closing costs are typical for any mortgage closing and all may be financed •No out-of-pocket expenses at closing Are Reverse Mortgages safe? •Yes, FHA and FannieMae guarantee the payments you receive •FHA and FannieMae also guarantee you will never owe more than your house is worth — no debt left on estate

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1-800-788-1184 www.federalmtg.com Clifton Merchant • April 2005

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So what do newcomers expect it will cost to run a competitive campaign in 2006? “Truthfully it should cost no more than $30,000 to run but is that the reality? No,” claimed Matt Grabowski, a Van Houten Ave. resident looking at running. “Is it discouraging for an up and comer?” he continued, noting he does not support a cap on campaign spending. “Yes, but fundraising is not the biggest challenge. Apathy is. Too many people think the incumbents can’t be beat. It will be costly to unseat them but it can be done.” Tom Fieldhouse, another resident considering a 2006 campaign, favors a limit on spending. “Someone needs to explain to me how it is worth the money spent,” he said of the funds raised

Matt Grabowski

Matt Ward

16

April 2005 • Clifton Merchant

Candidate Rumorville Aside from those pictured and the seven incumbents, candidates for 2006 may include former Mayor and Assemblyman Jerry Zecker, former Passaic County Freeholder Mike Mecca, current Assemblyman and Passaic County Freeholder Peter Eagler, Board of Ed Commissioner John Traier, Zoning Board Chair Nick Velicky, as well as Fred Torres, Frank Fusco, Bob Wittmann, Joe Yeamans and Mike Urciuoli. and expended in comparison to the annual salary for the job. Council members are paid $4,000 a year while the Mayor receives an annual stipend of $4,500. “I don’t see the logic and frankly I can’t afford it but I want to run,” Fieldhouse said, adding that a limit will force politicians to talk issues. Councilman Gaccione said those considering a run for public office need to understand that it is a rigorous job and personal priorities need to be established. “If your family or your children’s education are more important, serve that,” he said. “This is a dedicated service. Once you decide to run, there is a lot of time and money which will be spent.” Matt Ward claimed putting a cap on campaign spending is neither practical nor legal. “I understand the fear of money in campaigns but a spending limit would require massive resources to enforce it,”

Tom Fieldhouse

said Ward, who ran for Council in 1986 and 1990. “The real deficiency in Clifton politics is the system. It is not representative of where we are in Clifton today.” He said campaign costs can be lowered with term limits and a change to electing neighborhood representatives. While the district or ward Council member would also have a voice in the city’s government, the neighborhood representative would only have to campaign in a specific district or ward. “You’d use shoe leather to cover a district,” suggested Ward. “Politicians would have to run on issues and they’d have to stop these beauty contests.” Under his plan, Council elections would be moved to November to coincide with the presidential election. Four year terms would be staggered with elections conducted every two years. Ward also wants voters to directly elect the Mayor. Right now, the seven winning Council members select the Mayor. His suggestion has been talked about in the past so why is no one championing this? “The politicians in power are happy with this current structure. It’s safe,” said Ward. “I am looking at creating a ticket for 2006 with this being the platform issue: the City Manager form of government has to be jettisoned.” And as far as term limits? “If our country could move beyond Washington and Jefferson,” said Ward, “we in Clifton can move beyond whoever is here now.”


Want to run for

City Council? Election Day is May 9, 2006

M

any complain about government and politicians but few take the time to be a candidate. If you are among those who are considering the leap into public service, and more specifically running for the City Council, here’s a primer to getting started. See the Clerk: While the applications are not yet ready, the first step is to get guidelines and petition forms from City Clerk Richard Moran at City Hall. Election day is May 9, 2006 but you need to get started months before to have a shot. Call him at 973-470-5829. Voter Petitions: Candidates need to get registered voters to sign petitions, a form which acknowledges the candidacy. At least one percent of the registered voters in the constituency is needed, estimated to be 400 people. However, since some names may become invalid, the City Clerk advises getting at least 600 signatures. A signature is invalid if the individual is not a registered voter, or if the individual signs more than seven petitions.

Get Official: Alphabetize the petitions and submit them 54 days before the election. There are other forms to submit, to indicate that you accept the candidacy and, if you so choose, to put a policy statement next to your name on the ballot. Your campaign manager must also submit records with the NJ ELEC commission. Fund Raising: It costs money to run any campaign and experienced campaigners say this one will cost from $30,000 to $50,000. Look to family and friends—your base—they advise, to contribute funds and host get-outthe-vote parties. Write letters to the editor and speak at the Council meetings to get your name known and positions heard. As the previous story here explains, successful candidates in the 2002 Councilmanic campaign spent between $17,415 and $53,776 to win the four year position. Can you handle that kind of pressure? Annual Compensation: $4,000 (or $4,500 if selected by your colleagues as Mayor) plus health care benefits.

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‘05 Clifton Board of Education Candidates ––––––––––– Story by Joseph R. Torelli –––––––––––

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our opportunity to weigh in on the Clifton Public Schools operating budget and to select three candidates is at hand: Election Day is April 19 and we do hope you will vote. To give you a sense of what the five candidates stand for, Joe Torelli conducted phone interviews and the questions he posed and the candidate’s responses are printed on the following pages. Read what they have to say and find out more about their positions over the coming weeks by directly contacting the individuals running for office or by reading interviews in other publications. Starting on page 51, we’ve also provided space to the Clifton Superintendent of Schools who explains more about the budget, as well as the challenges and the goals he and the Board of Education Commissioners face in an ever-evolving system with over 10,500 students.

Marie Hakim Marie Hakim has been a Clifton Board of Education commissioner for 15 years and is seeking a sixth consecutive term. She is a lifelong city resident and a graduate of Clifton public schools. She holds a Masters Degree in education and is a retired teacher with 34 years of elementary, middle school and high school teaching experience. When you ran in 2002 you told our readers that building a new school is not Clifton’s only option to alleviate overcrowding and that you favor restructuring our present grades as a solution. Do you still believe this? Yes, but not to the same extent. The 9th grade should be pulled from the high school and the 8th grade from the middle schools. This would have students attending four different schools (elementary, middle, 8-9, and HS) which parents with more than one child in school would not favor. But we lack the site space in most of our elementary schools to add additions to accommodate the sixth grade and return to a junior high school format.

“I do not favor Athenia Steel, nor do I favor a large school on Latteri Park because I favor smaller learning communities.” –Commissioner Marie Hakim

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April 2005 • Clifton Merchant

Assuming that a new school needs to be built, where is the best site? I feel the Globe Products site on Bloomfield Ave. would be best. I do not favor Athenia Steel, nor do I favor a large school on Latteri Park because I favor smaller learning communities. The board decided not to build a 1,200 pupil school on Latteri Park in 1994 because it was felt the acreage was not sufficient. I favor a maximum 500 pupil school on that site. The grade structure of that school would depend on what else can be done, because if 500 students are accommodated on Brighton Road and 500 at Latteri Park, we would still have to place 500-700 8/9th graders elsewhere. I would not be opposed to construction on the city-owned portion of Main Memorial Park. Construction on the boardowned portion would merely create another 3,000 student complex and bring with it the same problems we have with the large high school complex.


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School Board Elections April 19th • Polls Open 1:30 PM - 9 PM Is Athenia Steel dead as a site? I cannot speak for other board members but I do not favor Athenia Steel because of the location and the heavy traffic that already exists in that area. I am not opposed to it because of the contamination that must be removed because contami-

nation would need remediation on Globe Products, as well. An egress probably would have to be built onto Paulison Ave, though, because of the already heavy traffic. What is your position on building an additional hallway to connect the four wings at CHS?

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I have favored building connecting ground walks as well as connecting skywalks between the wings for a long, long time. Connecting walkways were in the original plans when the newest wing was build but the idea was scratched to lower the cost of construction. What is your position on the budget? Do you support it? My major concern with the budget is that it will increase our base for next year because the building improvements are incorporated, as opposed to being in a separate question. Despite this concern, I will support the budget.

Mary Kowal Mary Kowal is a career educator who was a teacher, reading specialist, and technology coordinator in the Passaic school system until retiring recently. She earned a BA in Elementary Education from Catholic University and an MA in reading from Montclair State. She served on the Passaic County Community College Board of Trustees for 13 years. She is married to city Councilman Donald Kowal and has two grown sons. Why are you running for the Board this year? Both of my parents were educators who instilled in me a sense of civic duty. This is my way of giving something back to the community. What specifically will you do better than the incumbents you seek to replace? I will pursue unique ways to fund our schools through partnerships with universities. I did this successfully in Passaic with William Paterson University


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so I know it can be done. I will also explore new methods to eliminate illegal students like partnering with city government to make sure student addresses are legal dwellings. How frequently do you attend Board meetings? I watch nearly every Board meeting on TV. Do you think building a new school is the right solution to alleviate overcrowding? Yes. Even if we eliminate illegal students, our schools will still be overcrowded. It is vitally important that class sizes be kept to a minimum to maximize the educational experience. We have very few alternatives. Where should the school be built? Athenia Steel has 35 acres – 6 of which are dedicated to senior housing. The northern section has 11 acres that, I’ve been told, are deemed to be clean by residential standards. The school could be built there with the remaining acreage serving as a buffer zone between the two sections with parks and recreational facilities. Traffic will always be a problem but it should be reduced and redistributed somewhat when the Mayer building opens as a school. There has been talk of building a school at Latteri Park smaller than the 1,700 student facility that has been proposed by the Board. Do you favor this idea? I’m not in favor of building any school on Latteri Park, no matter what size. It’s the only park in the area and will negatively impact the neighborhood. What are your thoughts on pursuing other commercial/industrial properties near the Mayer building as the potential site for a school campus?

“I’m not in favor of building any school on Latteri Park, no matter what size.” –Challenger Mary Kowal

#2

I’d rather go with Main Memorial Park if Athenia Steel can’t be used. The Brighton Road buildings will take too long to acquire and will be too costly. What is your position on building an additional hallway to connect the four wings at CHS? It is not fiscally responsible because it won’t be tied to any educational goal, meaning that it would have to be funded entirely by taxpayers. Do you support passage of the proposed 2005-2006 school budget as it stands now? I support it because it still leaves Clifton with the lowest total K-12 cost per pupil in Passaic County and the third lowest in northern New Jersey. I would prefer to see capital expenses separated, though, so taxpayers know exactly what they’re paying for.

Jim Leeshock Jim Leeshock is a lifelong city resident and the father of two children who attend Clifton schools. He was elected to the Board in 2002, served as its VicePresident for and now chairs its Operations Committee. When you ran in 2002 you told our readers that ‘we need a more concerted effort’ to increase communications with our legislators to let them know that Clifton is not receiving appropriate state funding. What have you done to increase those communications? I’ve strengthened my relationships with Assemblyman Eagler and Senator Gill. I communicate with both on a regular basis, and I’m on Governor Cody’s email list for matters pertaining to education. Also, one of the reasons I voted to hire Dr. Rice was his outstanding record of interacting with legislators. He’s continued that since coming to Clifton and I know he speaks directly to the state education commissioner on many issues, as well. Assuming that a new school needs to be built, where is the best site?

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April 2005 • Clifton Merchant

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–Commissioner Jim Leeschock

We’re beyond assuming. In a post-9/11, postColumbine era, reducing the size of our schools is a must. Smaller schools create a safer more intimate environment. I don’t think there is a perfect spot to build in Clifton. One thing is certain, though, building a new school must be part of a plan that will resolve overcrowding forever. It can’t be another patchwork solution. Is Athenia Steel dead as a site? We’ve been working with the City Council since they resolved not to support Latteri Park. We passed a resolution saying that if the Council delivered a statesanctioned plan for a clean Athenia Steel site by May 1, we would swap Latteri Park for it. Anything later than that won’t allow us to put a referendum before the voters by December, making Athenia Steel a dead issue. There has been talk of building a school at Latteri Park smaller than the 1,700 student facility that has been proposed by the Board. Do you favor this idea? If we build one small school on Latteri Park without it being part of a larger plan, it won’t solve the problem for the long term. I will not support another quick fix. Long term planning is a must, and the plan must include solutions for maintaining and stemming the deterioration of our current buildings. Should the Board pursue other commercial/industrial properties near the Mayer building as a potential site for a school complex? It’s just not practical. It can’t be done in a timely fashion and it would be too expensive. If we try to procure the property through eminent domain, it could take years and we’d also have to pay to relocate Mayer on top of paying for the property and its renovations. What is your position on building an additional hallway to connect the four wings at CHS? It’s a ridiculous idea. We’d be spending $2.5 million just so our kids could get to their overcrowded classrooms faster. It’s another patchwork solution. What is your position on the budget? Do you support it? I support it fully. The Administration did a great job incorporating capital improvement so we don’t have to get another referendum for building maintenance. That $1.3 million in capital costs won’t be carrying over from year to year as some people fear.

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Bill Sichel was born and raised in Clifton. The 1969 CHS graduate is a Business Process Manager for Revlon and holds a BA in Chemistry from Drew University and an MA in Economics from NYU. He previously ran for the Board in 2004. Why are you running for the Board this year? To build on the positive momentum created by Dr. Rice and the current Board. My background in process management and economics will augment their talents to resolve the complex issues of overcrowding, illegal students, and bringing tax relief to homeowners. What specifically will you do better than the incumbents you seek to replace?

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“It’s been five and a half years since the Community Advisory Board was created, and we still don’t have a new school. That’s disgraceful.” –Challenger Bill Sichel

It’s been five and a half years since the Community Advisory Board was created, and we still don’t have a new school. That’s disgraceful. We need to get away from Board vs. City Council politics. There have been many missteps like the Schultheis Farm and School 14 plans. We never should have wasted time and money on that stuff. How frequently do you attend Board meetings? I’ve attended almost every meeting this year. In years past, my wife and I addressed the Board on a number of issues. Do you think building a new school is the best solution to alleviate overcrowding? Yes. We’ve let it go for so long that our hands are now tied. If we had more time, perhaps other alternatives could be explored. But we’re now at D-Day and other options are less and less viable. Where should the school be built? I think the City Hall complex is very viable, as is Main Memorial Park. But we first must decide what type of school system we want. If we change the grading structure of neighborhood schools, we really need to understand the impact. There has been talk of building a school at Latteri Park smaller than the 1,700 student facility that has been proposed by the Board. Do you favor this idea? A smaller school is an option, though perhaps not the best one. I don’t object to trading the park for another

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School Board Elections April 19th • Polls Open 1:30 PM - 9 PM site, providing we’re not restricted by terms of the land grant. Again, we first need to determine the grade structure before saying “yes.” Is Athenia Steel dead as a site for the new school? A school should not be built on Athenia Steel. It’s the only land in the city with 26 contiguous acres. The citizens of Clifton would be better served if it were transformed into a park, similar to Brookdale Park in Bloomfield or Central Park in NYC. Do you support passage of the proposed 2005-2006 school budget as it stands now? I do. So much of it is constrained by mandates; yet, we must spend money to maintain our current properties. We’ve experienced a 13% budget increase the past two years. We need to understand if we can expect similar increases in the future. We should look at the revenue side also and work rigorously to reform the property tax funding system. We also can bring businesses into the fold by exploring innovative ways to gain their financial support.

John Traier John Traier is a lifelong city resident who owns an accounting firm on Clifton Ave. He was elected to the Board in 2002 and is seeking his second consecutive term. He is a former Acting Commissioner of the NJ State Department of Banking. When you ran in 2002 you told our readers that you’d ‘like to see financial education taught in our schools’ through the introduction of industry-developed financial modules? Has this been done? Yes it has. I secured one grant from Household Finance and another from The Trust Company to

implement a 5th grade pilot program. It has now been converted for all 5th grades in the District. I’m presently working on a program to create a financial life-skills curriculum in the High School. Assuming that a new school will be built, where is the best site? Based on size alone, I’d say Athenia Steel. But a remedial work plan to remove contamination must be approved by the DEP before May 1 so we can place a referendum on the ballot by December. Realistically, the best long-term solution is to build a 1,000 stu-

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dent annex on a portion of Main Memorial Park and use the recently-approved Mayer building for a third middle school. We could then purchase the second Mayer building and the adjoining Verizon building and convert them into an educational campus. This would substantially cut down on bussing and allow us to implement specialized education programs. If Athenia Steel becomes viable, has the Board considered the traffic impact a school would have there? Preliminary traffic information has already been gathered. We’ve been holding off on paying for a formal study until hearing from the DEP. There should definitely be three points of access and egress if we build a school there. Many Board members say they would consider using the vacant US Capitol Soap property on Colfax Ave. for parking. There has been talk of building a school at Latteri Park smaller than the 1,700 student facility that has been proposed by the Board. Do you favor this idea?

Board Meeting on April l3, 7 pm As we went to press, only one candidates’ night was scheduled and that was on March 31. Chances are, candidates will speak at the next Board of Education meeting which is on April 13 at 7 pm in the Administration Building, 745 Clifton Ave. For more info, call the Board offices at 973-470-2260.

“I would rather swap or sell Latteri Park to the city for a site more suitable to our longer term needs.” –Commissioner John Traier

If we built there it would have to be on the scale of Schools 14 and 16, and I don’t think that’s advisable. I would rather swap or sell Latteri Park to the city for a site more suitable to our longer term needs. What is your position on building an additional hallway to connect the four wings at CHS? It’s a $2.5 million project with no construction aid from the state. It is more critical to concentrate on a new school, and repairing our existing buildings. What is your position on the budget? Do you support it? As a Board, we felt routine capital projects shouldn’t be handled via voter referendum. So we included substantial funding to begin repairing our 75-100 year-old buildings. That makes sense because we shouldn’t be hitting voters with spending referendums every year. This budget supports our long-term planning process and it addresses disciplinary issues at the high school. It will allow us two create two part-time dean positions to assist the vice principals with disciplinary issues. Our perpupil costs for K-12 are still the lowest in Passaic County, and the third lowest in northern New Jersey.

RE-ELECT JOHN TRAIER Clifton Board of Education • Procured grants to establish financial education in our Clifton Public Schools • Implemented a program with Montclair State University which enables Clifton High School Seniors to take college courses for credit • Returned a professional atmosphere to the Board of Education • Supported Five Year Strategic Planning and A Curriculum Audit for the Clifton School System • Fought to keep the Board of Education as an elected board

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A Better Tomorrow for Clifton Children by Michael F. Rice, Ph.D. Superintendent, Clifton Public Schools

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ears ago, a board member asked a former superintendent of mine, “Mr. superintendent, it could take us 20 years to do what you’re suggesting. What do you have to say about that?” My former superintendent responded, “I wish we had started 20 years ago.” My former superintendent understood, as do Clifton citizens, that we can’t build a better past; we can only build a better future. It makes little sense to lament yesterday’s shortcomings. Instead, we need to work together to improve tomorrow, for our children and our community. That’s why, with support and involvement of parents, educators and other community members, our five-year community strategic plan for the schools calls for the implementation of full-day kindergarten throughout the district.

Michael F. Rice

Towns circled have full day kindergarten. Last year, Clifton voters approved piloting full-day kindergarten in one school, a program which will be expanded to Schools 1, 4, 9 and 16 if the Board of Education’s budget is approved on April 19.

The plan, presented to the Board of Education in December 2003, recommended that full-day kindergarten gradually be woven into the fabric of our district. Recognizing the many intellectual and social benefits of full-day kindergarten, the Board and voters approved last April a pilot full-day kindergarten at School 17, which began in September 2004. In the coming school year budget, the Board has approved an expansion of full-day kindergarten to Schools 1, 4, 9, and 16. Brain research shows that the sponge-like

quality of the mind is greatest in very young children. Anyone who has ever spent an afternoon with a young child understands immediately just how curious and alert a youngster is. Since most public schools don’t start until kindergarten, this is often the first and best opportunity to educate children. A full-day experience in school, rather than the 2-1/2 hour half-day session, gives students essential academic and social experiences that serve as an important educational foundation for their later years.

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Value of Full Day Kindergarten Student achievement research has also demonstrated the importance of full-day kindergarten. One of the largest districts in the United States, Montgomery County, Maryland, converted half-day to full-day kindergarten in 60 of its elementary schools a number of years ago. Students in schools with full-day kindergarten have generated substantially greater student achievement relative to their peers in schools with half-day kindergarten, and this greater achievement has persisted in the years following kindergarten. In other words, all else being equal, full-day kindergarten produces a lasting positive impact on student achievement, particularly for those students who receive little academic support prior to their entry into kindergarten. Parents have expressed tremendous support for fullday kindergarten, throughout the United States. Like school teachers, parents realize that in an era of increasing accountability, kindergarten is more than simply a social experience. Indeed, on the first day of kindergarten, the expectation of the state of New Jersey is that every kindergarten student knows his or her alphabet, numbers to ten, colors, and shapes, expectations much higher than when many of us were in school. Clearly, many of our youngsters begin school without these prerequisites, and our outstanding teachers

Full-day kindergarten produces a lasting positive impact on student achievement, particularly for those students who receive little academic support prior to their entry into kindergarten. work hard to get them up to speed as quickly as possible. Half-day kindergarten, however, proves to be an implicit impediment in this process. Twenty-one (21) of 26 school districts in towns around Clifton have full-day kindergarten, though we still have half-day kindergarten (see the accompanying map). Our children receive half the experience that their peers in neighboring districts receive. Clifton children need the same opportunities as their peers elsewhere if Clifton is to rise. Many people are so sold on full-day kindergarten that they have suggested that we implement it in one fell swoop. Given financial and space constraints, however, particularly under 1701, the new school budget law approved by the state legislature, we cannot possibly do so. The Board and I have a commitment to implement full-day kindergarten throughout the district as quickly as possible within the limits of these constraints.

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Buildings Average Age: 72 Years Old Besides full-day kindergarten, another goal of the district’s strategic plan is to provide appropriate learning environments for our students. With the exception of School 17, our buildings are more than 72 years old on average and therefore require a substantial amount of upkeep. This year’s financial plan includes the replacement of an old boiler at Woodrow Wilson Middle School, the windows on the west side of one of the original wings at the high school, the roof over School 11’s gymnasium, and the track and pits at the stadium. In addition, both the stadium weight room and concession area would be improved under this financial plan. In the last three years, we have raised test scores at all levels in the district and have increased other academic indicators as well. We have finished a five-year community strategic plan and a curriculum management audit for the schools, and improved communication with our parents, staff, and community. We have revised or written 151 curriculum guides and improved our professional development, our hiring processes, and our teaching. We have begun two new senior options programs for our high school seniors: credit-bearing Montclair State University courses and a career internship program. We have created additional mentoring for many of our new teachers, an aspiring administrators academy, a financial education pilot program for our fifth graders, and an additional opportunity for senior citizens to volunteer one-on-one in our schools. In addition, thanks to the support of voters in the last two elections, we have been able to: stabilize elementary school class sizes, reduce a number of the large class sizes at the high school, and reduce large class sizes at

A Comparison of Per Pupil Expenditures and Administrative Spending Per Pupil Administrative Cost Per Pupil

District

Cost Per Pupil

Passaic

$12,401

$1,009

Paterson

11,934

1,312

State Average

10,651

1,158

Hawthorne

10,120

1,080

Pompton Lakes

10,175

1,595

Wayne

9,948

1,079

West Milford

9,747

973

Clifton

8,673

952

Compiled from the NJ State Department of Education’s 2005 Comparative Spending Guide of New Jersey School Districts

Christopher Columbus Middle School to approximately those at Woodrow Wilson Middle School. Moreover, for the first time in the district’s history, the additions of small numbers of staff permitted us to finally have, at every elementary school, a full-time basic skills instructor, a full-time nurse, and some statemandated world language instruction. In addition, thanks to the support of voters, we were able to reduce elementary school overcrowding with the construction and opening of School 17.

Successful Schools & Property Values Clifton Public Schools spend less tax money per student than any other K-12 district in Passaic County (see chart). We’re not just low for Passaic County. We’re low for Northern New Jersey. Only four of the 90 K-12 school districts in seven Northern New Jersey counties (Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Morris,

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Passaic, Sussex, and Warren) have per pupil spending less than Clifton. Only two districts in Northern New Jersey have administrative per pupil spending less than Clifton. One of the consequences of the New Jersey method of school finance is that property taxes go up each year, regardless of whether voters approve a school district’s budget or not. Unfortunately, however, with a failed budget, taxes go up but services for children in the schools, often teachers, end up being cut. With a successful budget, taxes go up a bit more, but services for children in schools improve. The tax difference between a failed budget and a successful budget is relatively small for the average taxpayer, but the impact of a cut in services is substantial for our children. Invariably, in a district as tightly budgeted as ours, class sizes increase, which directly and negatively affects the quality of education that children receive. One of the major factors in a property’s value is the local public school system. Indeed, parents move to communities (and away from them) more often due to the public schools than any other factor. We all know this. We don’t have to be real estate agents or economists to figure it out. So can we do better? Absolutely. We can make Clifton rise. As a community, though, we still have considerable work to do before we serve Clifton children to the best of our ability. We all know that we are educating children for a more complicated world than that of 30 years ago, one in which our students will have to compete with people from across the world. On April 19, the day of the school budget vote, we voters get to decide how to best improve Clifton’s future.

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Clifton History

Yesteryear in Athenia –––––––––– Story by Joe Hawrylko –––––––––––

F

rom 1950 to 1968, products were Made in Clifton which were so unique and one-of-a-kind that they can still be found in the Smithsonian Institution. It was the heyday of innovation in Athenia, specifically at 19 Sebago St., where L.C. Eichner Instruments, which specialized in custom-engineered scientific instruments, was located.

“We received orders from all over the world. Our facilities were capable of creating things you simply could not find anywhere else,” recalled Henry Kedron, former plant manager and precise instrument maker, who first started work for the firm in 1944. Many of these instruments were so rare that they attracted customers from all parts of the business world, from astronomy to medicine. Among the more notable clients were NASA, the Smithsonian Institution, IBM, various museums and universities, including, Columbia and Princeton, as well as countless scientists and physicians. Founded in Bloomfield in 1944 by Laurits Christian Eichner, the company was originally a mass production parts plant. With a forced 1950 relocation to Clifton due to the newly constructed Garden State Parkway—and thanks to a few tough customers—L.C. Eichner left mass production and focused on custom engineering... and the business began to take off. “Mr. Eichner gained quite a reputation,” said Kedron. “He was known as the ‘Damn Dane’, a very social, double-fisted drinker with a hard head.” Perhaps a reputation such as Eichner’s would not go far in business today but his innovation and can-do attitude pushed the firm ahead. “As hard-headed as he was, Mr. Eichner would always do what he said he would do. He was a genius and everyone respected this,” added Kedron admiringly. “Mr. Eichner was actually a very kind man, even if he was quite demanding of his employees”

Made in Athenia! Henry Kedron stands in front of a replica of Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe’s armillary sphere, used to measure the longitude and latitude of stars. The sphere was later shipped to the U.S National Museum in the Smithsonian Institution. Clifton Merchant • April 2005

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From right, L. C. Eichner, his wife, Henry Kedron and staff.

His ever-changing staff never numbered more than a dozen, only one of which graduated with a degree. Work there was demanding and was largely an onthe-job learning experience. The staff was led by Kedron, also the principal assistant, who was known as the “right hand man” of Eichner. “I literally became known as the ‘right hand man’ of Mr. Eichner since he was a lefty,” said Kedron. “I apprenticed most of the new workers.” Through the brilliance of Eichner and the hard work of Kedron and his fellow staff members, L.C. Eichner Instruments developed some of the most unique and advanced products to ever come from Clifton. “We developed for NASA an unmanned balloon to carry special camera equipment to over 81,000 feet high for photos of the sun,” noted Kedron, “We were the first to achieve photos from this height, besting a

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“We received orders from all over the world. Our facilities were capable of creating things you simply could not find anywhere else.” –Plant Manager & Principal Assistant Henry Kedron

joint effort that the British and French had tried earlier in 1957.” The results gave researchers some of the first close up photos of the sun and literally shed new light on information previously unknown about the sun. “We also developed two circle Goniometers for NASA, which measured the moon rocks brought back from the moon,” added Kedron. In addition to NASA, the company worked with Beth Israel Hospital in Newark where they introduced a procedure for putting screws into broken bones. This whole development, from its inception to adaptation, took approximately three months, said Kedron. This procedure is still being used today by orthopedists. L.C. Eichner Instruments also had a long standing history with the Smithsonian Institution, a regular customer. “We made over 100 items, dealing with everything from astronomy to mechanical machines, which are on display at the Smithsonian Museum,” claimed Kedron, “The former Director at the Smithsonian Museum, Robert P. Multhauf, actually wrote a letter of recommendation for me, naming me Eichner’s brightest


pupil, after my career with L.C. Eichner Instruments ended.” Following Eichner’s death in 1968, his widow sold the company and Kedron subsequently left the business. Having done a stint in the Navy, he used the G.I. Bill to attend night courses at Kean University, graduating in 1975 with a Industrial Arts teaching degree. Kedron went on to enjoy a second career as an Industrial Arts teacher at Northern Highlands Regional High School where he taught until his retirement in 1987. While L.C. Eichner Instruments is long gone from Sebago St., Kedron remembered his time there with a great sense of pride and joy, having been part of a Clifton business that achieved so much. “It was a once in a lifetime opportunity to work in all fields imaginable,” said Kedron, a resident of Hasbrouck Heights “I am just very grateful for having the chance to achieve so much.”

Today in Athenia

T

hese days, Sebago St. is still an active hub of Clifton commerce. From window manufacturing to wood floor installers and refinshers, a diverse collection of businesses dot this busy little street keeping local people employed and attracting customers from all over. Athenia, known now as the Heart of Clifton, encompasses a 1.1 mile long strip of Van Houten Ave. and surrounding streets, from city hall to the Passaic border. Thanks to the volunteer efforts of the Athenia Business Association, there has been a steady revitalization in the district, with landscape improvements, colorful signage and various events. Last year the group successfully pushed for the addition of 17 parking parking spaces on a field at the intersection of Huron and Van Houten Aves. This year the ABA, led primarily by Matt Grabowski and Gina Yarrish, expects to continue to keep a spotlight on the district. On April 30 at 7 pm, the ABA hosts a reception at the Elks Lodge on Clifton Ave. The $28 tickets includes a buffet, catered by Athenia merchant De Feo’s Deli & Grill. There will also be a DJ and a raffle. The Annual Van Houten Ave. Street Fair is on Sept. 18 and features food, vendors, entertainment, petting zoo, rides for children and a classic car show. Vendors are welcome to join the festivities. The ABA yearly membership fee of $50 is open to all and the funds raised will go towards an organization that supports the needs and interests of both residents and merchants in and around Van Houten Ave. For information, call 973-473-0986 or 973-773-0802.

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Chess Masters Needed: The Boys & Girls Club is introducing a chess club for 3rd to 8th graders on Wednesday and Fridays, from 4 to 5:30 pm. The goal is to build cognitive skills, develop strategy, long and short term memory and build character, all in a relaxed atmosphere. Volunteer chess teachers are needed. If interested, call Paula Benjamin at 973-773-2697, ext. 47.

The St. Mary’s Hospital Foundation was created to secure funds to further the mission of the Passaic hospital. The Foundation’s Golf Classic is on July 18 at the Montclair Golf Club, West Orange. A gala dinner and dance is set for Dec. 10 at the Valley Regency. “I cannot think of a better way to start our 110th year by launching the Foundation—the seeds are being planted for another 110 years,” said Elaine Robertazzi, Vice President of the Foundation and proprietor of Liberty Lincoln/Mercury in Clifton. St. Mary’s Hospital was founded in 1895 by the Sisters of Charity of St. Elizabeth. Since that time it has grown into an acute care facility offering a full scope of services. For more info, go to www.smh-passaic.org.

Win a 2005 Lincoln Mercury: The major fundraiser for the Boys & Girls Club—the Go For The Gold raffle —provides the top winner a 2005 Lincoln Mercury LS, an American luxury vehicle valued at $38,735. With 800 tickets being sold at $100 each, its important for the directors of the Club to sell all tickets. Winners will be drawn during a wine and cheese reception on May 19 at 8 pm at the Upper Montclair Country Club. It is a fun evening, with consolation prizes awarded periodically. Each purchased ticket entitles two to attend. A $100 tax deductible ticket helps the Boys & Girls Club provide services to thousands of Clifton kids, year round. Tickets are now on sale. Call 973-773-0966 for info.

St. Mary’s Hospital hosts free English classes on May 10 to June 16 at 211 Pennington Ave., Passaic. The classes are beginner level ESL and are on Tuesday and Thursday evenings. Bring your social security card to sign up. Call Sister Peggy Nulty at 973-470-3535. Literacy Volunteers of America, (LVA) Essex/Passaic County, seeks volunteers to tutor adults in basic literacy and English for speakers of other languages. Tutors must have a high school diploma and complete a free 15 hour workshop held on April 5, 7,14, 19, and 21 from 6 to 9 pm at Clifton City Hall, 900 Clifton Ave., Health Dept.Conference Room, 2nd floor. For info, call LVA at 973-470-0039 or 973-779-0474.

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This column was originally started by our founder, the late Murray Blumenfeld. In his spirit, we continue its publication. We’re devoting this column to April’s birthstone, “Diamond.” The majority of diamonds we sell come with GIA certificates. The GIA is the highest authority on diamonds. When they appraise a diamond and put their seal on the report you know what you’re getting. Here is an explanation to help you understand GIA certificates. Color - The color chart starts with the letter D and goes all the way to Z. K thru Z are varying shades of yellow. D,E,& F are colorless and considered the best color grades and naturally the most expensive. G,H,I & J are near colorless and this area tends to be the most popular. Clarity - This pertains to the amount of flaws, called inclusions, in the diamond. Flawless is the best followed by Internally Flawless. Next comes VVS1 and VVS2. VVS stands for Very Very Slight inclusions. Then comes VS1 and VS2. VS stands for Very Slight inclusions. Next comes SI1 and SI2 which stand for Slightly Included. Imperfect stones are the last clarity grade where the inclusions are visible to the naked eye. Cut - This part of the description of a diamond is based on mathematical formulas that affect the way light is refracted inside the diamond and reflected back to your eye. It is described on the appraisal as Depth percentage and Table percentage. Girdle - This is the edge of the diamond. More of a descriptive device than anything else, anywhere from Thin to Thick is OK. When a diamond is described as Extremely Thin or Extremely Thick, those are stones we choose not to consider. Culet - This is the point at the bottom of the diamond. No culet or a small culet are the most common and with technology in cutting today there are not many described larger than that. Polish & Symmetry are self explanatory. The majority of stones are described with Good Polish and Good Symmetry. There are some stones that are described as Very Good and even some that are graded Excellent. Fluorescence - Under certain light a stone with fluorescence will emit light when exposed to long-wave ultraviolet light. In closing, March 8 marked one year since Morre’s passing. It’s been a tough adjustment, but we feel his presence surrounding us. This bring us comfort. He will forever remain in our hearts. Have an “Amazing April.” Talk to you again next month.

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Klezmerfest brings a bit of the sounds of the old Yiddish theater to the Clifton YM/YWHA on April 27.

Klezmerfest performs in a Passover concert on April 27 at 7 pm at the YM/YWHA of Clifton and Passaic, at 199 Scoles Ave, Clifton. Klezmer is a type of festive traditional Jewish music that celebrates the days of Yiddish theater. Freylachs, bulgars, doynas and chassidis make for an enjoyable and fun night of music that the whole family will enjoy. Tickets ordered in advance are $12 for adults and $10 for children and seniors. Tickets at the door are $15 for adults and $12 for children and seniors. For more info, call 973-779-2980. Artistic Expressions is an exhibit and sale of two and three-dimensional art celebrating diverse styles and creative expression by students of Clifton High School at the Clifton Arts Center. It runs from April 6 to May 6. The Clifton Arts Center is located on the grounds of the Municipal Complex near the intersection of Clifton and Van Houten Aves. Gallery hours are from Wednesday through Saturday, 1 to 4 pm, with a reception on April 7, from 7 to 9 pm. Call 973-472-5499. Rev. Ralph Boult, Pastor Emeritus of the First Presbyterian Church of Passaic, will demonstrate his award winning oil painting technique at the April 4 meeting of the Clifton Association of Artists at the Senior Citizens Building on the Clifton Municipal Complex. The meeting is open to the public, however, non-members are asked to donate $1. For more info on this and other CAA events, call Pat Johnson 973-742-2712.


people such as the striking silk mill workers who peacefully assembled at the Botto House in 1913 and worked together to bring about positive changes in their workplaces and daily lives. Selected posters will be on display at the museum from April 30 – June 30. Entries must be received by April 15; winners will be notified by April 26. The museum also offers opportunities for the completion of Eagle Scout and American Labor Merit Badge projects as well as Junior, Brownie, Cadette and Senior Girl Scout interest projects. For info, call 973-595-7953 or go to www.geocities.com/labormuseum.

The art of Michael Gabriele is on display at the Park Avenue corporate hub in Florham Park through April 18. For info, call 973-773-7745. New Jersey Music and Arts presents the 2nd One Heart International Festival of music, dance and drama on April 3 at 5 pm at the Woodrow Wilson Middle School, Van Houten Ave., Clifton. Tickets are $10 with discounts for seniors and students. This year’s theme is ‘Beauty in Diversity, a Celebration of the Cultures of the World.’ For info, call 973- 272-3255. Working Together in Peace is the theme of a poster contest open to students from grades 4 – 8 sponsor ed by the American Labor Museum/Botto House National Landmark in Haledon. Students are asked to create an original poster that shows children and/or adults working together in a peaceful environment. When designing their posters, students should consider

Matthew Schuller’s art is on display at the Clifton Arts Center through May 6.

The Passaic County Student Film and Video Festival, an exhibit of works created by students who live or attend school in Passaic County, will be at the Passaic County Community College Public Safety Complex, 300 Oldham Rd., Wayne, on April 16. Call 973-881-4427.

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The 16th Child Health & Safety Fair is May 14 at 10 am at School 16 on Grove St. The fair is held indoors and outdoors with groups providing free health and safety info, demonstrations and screenings to kids and parents. Those who would like to participate by providing a display or interactive activity should contact Deputy Clifton Fire Chief Thomas Lyons at 973-4711742 or at: FMBA21@aol.com. The Allwood Woman’s Club next meeting is on April 4 at 7:30 pm at the Allwood Community Church, Chelsea St. Meetings are held on the first Monday of every month. New members are always welcome. For info: 973-773-5150. The Clifton Veteran’s Memorial Library on Piaget Ave will host numerous events this month. On April 7, Passaic County Social Worker William Wurst will host

The Walk for the Health of It program began on March 24. Every Thursday at 5:30 pm, the group meets at City Hall, stretches and strides two miles together. The program is free and all are invited to join. Just show up or call 973-470-5958.

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video game programmer David Lubar will discuss his novel, Dunk, chosen as the Young Adult selection for One Book New Jersey 2005, on April 9 at 2 pm. On April 19 the book discussion group will focus on Daughter of Fortune by Isabel Allende. The group meets every third Tuesday at 7 pm. New members are encouraged to register. For info call 973-772-5500. The School 16 HASA hosts a Tricky Tray on April 21 at 6 pm at the Valley Regency, 1129 Valley Rd. Comedian Tony Darrow will perform. Tickets are $38, which includes dinner and show. No one under 18 will be admitted. Call Karen Harris 973-744-6855.

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From the Dnipro River? The Holy Ascension Ukrainian Orthodox Church at 635 Broad St. hosts a fish fry on April 22 at 5 pm. Catered by Argyle’s, tickets are $6 for children and $12 for adults. The church will also celebrate Orthodox Easter on May 1. All are welcome to join.

Charity, Justice, Brotherly Love and Fidelity are the hallmarks of Elk Lodge 1569. Members will mark the 75th anniversary with a dinner dance on May 21. The lodge was founded in 1930 with 65 men and now has 445 members who support a number of organizations in Clifton, including the Cerebral Palsy Center. Tickets for the dinner dance are $35. Call 973-471-5593. The Garden Club of Clifton will have an exhibit during April at the Veterans Memorial Library. Club members will also answer gardening questions on Saturdays from 10 to noon. Call 973-772-5500. St. Brendan School in Lakeview, which has Smartboard technology in every classroom, is accepting registration for grades Pre-K through eight. Call 973-772-1149.

Tom Hawrylko at the Ukrainian Parliament Chambers this past December. On April 20 at 6:30 pm at Mario’s at the regular monthly meeting of the Clifton Optimist Club, Hawrylko will give a presentation on his trip to Ukraine where he served as an International Observer for the 2004 Ukrainian Presidential Election.

Orange Recollections: On April 20 at 6:30 pm at Mario’s Restaurant, Clifton Merchant Magazine Editor & Publisher Tom Hawrylko will discuss his trip to Ukraine during the so-called Orange Revolution this past December. He was there as an International Election Monitor for the historic third and decisive poll between Vicktor Yushchenko and Vicktor Yanukovych, which came under international scrutiny due to Yushchenko’ poisoning. A $10 fee (to Clifton Optimist Club) includes pizza and soda. Info: 973-253-4400.

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The Clifton Community Policing Division of the Clifton Police seeks sponsors to defray the costs of ‘National Night Out Against Crime’ which will be held in the first week of August. Corporate sponsors can send donations to the Clifton Police Department National Night Out Fund, 900 Clifton Avenue, 07013. The Clifton Police will also host a meeting on April 26 to discuss various aspects of crime prevention in a meeting at the Clifton Veterans Memorial Library on Piaget Ave. Call 973-340-5151.

Clifton Stallions U10 Soccer Team is leaving for Rome on April 23 to train at a soccer center. To help defray the cost, parents are hosting a fundraising dinner on April 8 at LeNeve’s Restaurant in Haledon. Call Coach Jaimie Herrer at 973-943-7512.

The monthly Alzheimer’s support group led by social worker Diane Lesko meets at the Clifton Medicine Family Building, 716 Broad St., 2nd floor. The group offers companionship, information and resources to caregivers, as well as therapeutic and cathartic value, and meets the evening of the second Monday of every month. For more details, call 973-904-6119.

Members of St. Philip the Apostle Knights of Columbus Council 11671 will soon stand outside local business and seek donations to benefit programs for mentally challenged citizens in the Clifton area. Those who wish to mail in donations can send them to St. Philip Church, 797 Valley Road, Clifton, NJ 07013. (Checks payable to St. Philip Knights of Columbus.)

Walkers, runners and cancer survivors are needed to make the firstever American Cancer Society Relay For Life of Clifton on June 10 a reality. A meeting is on April 27 at 6:30 pm in City Hall to plan the ‘round the clock’ event designed to raise awareness and funds for the fight against cancer. Call Clifton’s Health Dept. Educator Alicia Gambino at 973-470-5773.

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45


Michael N. Corradino Service Above Self Awards&Gala Dinner Dance

Passaic-Clifton UNICO honored long time member Michael N. Corradino at the Service Above Self Awards and Gala Dinner Dance on March 18. Organizations and individuals were recognized for service to the community which best exemplify the UNICO motto Service Above Self. The Corradino family, below from left, are Mike’s sister Mildred Snyder, Mike and Anne Belle’s son Bart with his fiance Elaine Connell, Mike and Anne Belle, and their daughter Mary Ann with her husband Neal Green.

HOME EQUITY LINE OF CREDIT

*Open a home equity line of credit, have your payment deducted from your Greater Communtiy Bancorp Member Bank (GCB) checking account and your annual percentage rate (APR) will be the prime rate (a variable rate), as published in the Wall Street Journal, (currently 5.75%) MINUS 1%. Lines of credit without payment deducted from a GCB checking account will carry the prime rate, currently 5.75% APR. Maximum APR will not exceed 9 percentage points over the original offer. Lines of credit may not exceed $150,000. You may use the account as a line of credit for fifteen years from the open date. During this time, your minimum monthly payments will be 1/180 of the outstanding principal balance plus accrued interest. After the fifteen-year draw period, the loan will be amortized over an additional fifteen-year period. Evidence of property insurance required. $250 non-refundable application is required. Subject to credit approval. Contact Your local branch for details. 1222

46

April 2005 • Clifton Merchant


Above, presentors former Passaic Fire Chief Lou Imparato and Acting Passaic Fire Chief Timothy N. Zayatz flank recipient Passaic Firefighter Jason Ayala. At top right, Clifton Police Chief Bob Ferreri presents award to Clifton Police Officer Stephen Berge. The Passaic County 200 Club was also honored with President Rick Ricca, Passaic County Sheriff Jerry Speziale, Unican Frederick M. Testa and Clifton-Passaic UNICO Chapter President Ricky Bagolie. Also honored were Clifton Public Schools teachers Arlene Rodgers and Meredith Madden for their efforts with the Clifton Junior Olympics. See page 73 for a photo and related story. 1671

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The City’s Clean Communities Committee has declared April18 to 24 Clifton Earth Week with the goal to clean-up every section of the community. Residents, businesses, civic groups and schools are asked to clean April 18 to 24, their properties of litter and other debris. Currently there are over 50 organizations, and nearly 10,000 citizens which have in some way been involved in the Clean Communities Program.

2005

CLIFTON

EARTH WEEK

Many of these organizations will be performing their cleanups during this week. They will be collecting litter, planting flowers, shrubs and trees and doing various other maintenance around their properties, neighborhoods and parks. Those interested in being part of the spring cleanup during Clifton Earth Week, or those that need more info, should call Clean Communities Coordinator Al Du Bois at 973-470-2239. The Friends of Morris Canal Park and Nature Preserve will host the first Arbor Day ‘Clean and Grow Restoration Campaign’ on April 28 and 29, from 3 pm until dusk. The two day event starts up as a clean up project and on Arbor Day will plant new horticulture at the Broad St. green space, increasing the species identification plaques and historical signage. The event will

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be conducted by volunteers from various groups and businesses from around the city. More volunteers and donations are needed. Additionally, the Clifton Clean Communities Committee seeks groups and individuals to get involved and register to be part of the 25 yearround volunteers needed to maintain the park. Call Clifton Rec’s Debbie Oliver at 973-470-5958 for info. Driving Green: Once synonymous with gas guzzling, the SUV is being redefined by the new hybrid Ford Escape. A cross between gas and electric engines, the hybrid Escape is EPA rated at 36 mpg in the city and 31 mpg on the open road, all while greatly reducing emissions.

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“The hybrid starts at $26,970, about $3,000 more then the gas-only Escape,” noted John Fette of Fette Ford-Kia, located at the intersection of Rt. 3 and Rt. 46. “But the good news is buyers get a $1,500 tax credit.” The four cylinder motor, combined with the electric engine, makes for a perfect vehicle for the calm commuter. From a standing start, the electric engine drives the car to 25 mph, at which point the gas engine takes kicks in for acceleration. At stops, the gas engine is shut off as the electric motor runs, cutting emissions and saving fuel. There is no need to worry about replacing the battery as the electric engine continuously recharges itself from power captured from the normal braking and engine operations.


The Chopin Singing Society will celebrate its 95th anniversary with a concert featuring the Aria Chorus on May 15 at the Polish American Cultural Center, Monroe St., Passaic. Tickets are $17.50. The Society is an all male chorus which invites new members to attend rehearsals, held every Monday at 8 pm at the Cultural Center. Call Stanley Kobylarz at 973-478-8268. School 9 Beefsteak/Tricky Tray is April 15, 7 pm, at the Wayne Manor. The theme is Spotlight on Our Stars. Tickets $35; call 973-779-0670. The Holy Name Society of SS. Cyril & Methodius Church beefsteak is on April 8 at 7 pm in the church hall on Ackerman Ave. Tickets are $30; call 973-470-5732. St. Brendan School Grocery Tricky Tray is April 17 at 1 pm in the school hall, 154 East First St. Tickets are $10; call 973-772-1149. St. Peter’s Episcopal Church hosts an auction at 7 pm on April 21 at 380 Clifton Ave. Tickets are $5. Call 973-546-5020. St. Peter’s Haven hosts a Tricky Tray and Dinner on May 12 at 6:30 pm at The Brownstone in Paterson. Tickets are $35. Call 973-546-3406.

Some of the Clifton members of the Chopin Singing Society, rear from left: Richard Vetanovetz, Paul Kozdeba, Brent Iskra, Stephen Stys, Andrzej Andrelczyk, Zbigniew Niejadlik. Front from left: Stanley Kobylarz and Al Kozoeba. Missing from photo are Steven Klett and Richard Daszezyszak.

Cub Scout Pack 22’s Pasta Dinner is April 9, 4 to 7 pm, at the Allwood Community Church Hall. Advance tickets are $7 and $4; $1 more at the door. Call 973-779-3825. The North Jersey Regional Chamber of Commerce Fabulous Food Fest is April 4 at the Sheraton Hotel, East Rutherford. Attendees will sample signature dishes prepared by dozens of area restaurants. Advance tickets are $30 or $40 at the door. A portion of proceeds will

benefit the United Way of Passaic County. For ticket info call the Chamber at 973-470-9300. The Friends of the Clifton Animal Shelter beefsteak is on April 22, 7 pm at the Boys and Girls Club. Tickets are $40 and $16. For info: 732-921-4493. Save The Animals Rescue Team beefsteak is April 8 at 7 pm at the Boys & Girls Club. Proceeds support local animal rescue efforts. Tickets are $37; call 973-785-1245.

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A Local Street … A Band of ‘Brothers’... A Classic Vibe ––––––––––– Story by Pat Conroy –––––––––––

all it a rebirth, an American Renaissance…rock & roll style. Countless folks who came of age in the 1960s and ’70s, years after laying down their instruments and picking up the torches of raising families and earning a living, are rekindling their passion for music. They are strapping on their guitars, jamming with their buds—and loving it anew.

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April 2005 • Clifton Merchant

Such is the case with the musicians in Brookwood. Just over a year ago, four local guys all from Clifton—all, at one time, inhabitants of Brookwood Road—dusted off their musical chops and put together a classic rock band. These lifelong friends began their reunion as a favor to a friend, to play at a local fundraiser. It was to be a one-gig deal. But to their surprise and their fans’ delight, the band clicked. An inaugural gig at Joey’s rocked the house with upbeat, danceable classic rock tunes. Now, one year and numerous gigs later, they are returning to Joey’s, the place where it all began. Who is Brookwood? Chances are, you’ve probably seen them around Clifton at one time or another—at the bagel store, at the baseball diamond or on the soccer field. Mike Cetinich sings lead vocals and plays guitar; John Giardina, lead guitar and vocals; Dan Pugliese, drums and vocals; and Pete Cetinich, guitar and vocals. They’re all local boys from way back. Born in Hoboken, the Cetinich brothers moved to Clifton in the 1950s, settled on Brookwood Road and have lived in town ever since. From junior high and beyond, they always played music. Pete (CHS class of ’68) started as a drummer, switching to guitar in his


Mike Cetinich sings lead vocals and plays guitar; John Giardina, lead guitar and vocals; Dan Pugliese, drums and vocals; and Pete Cetinich, guitar and vocals. late teens and Mike (CHS class of ’69) played guitar. Music ran in the family: Their mom Marjorie sang in USO shows during WWII and their grandfather Pete Conroy performed with the minstrels in Hoboken. When the Beatles hit the airwaves in the early ’60s, the Cetinich brothers were hooked. They formed and disbanded numerous bands over the years, but they never stopped playing. Eventually they both married Clifton girls: Pete married Fran Colombo and Mike, Mary Jean Fariello, and began raising another generation of Clifton Cetinichs. Pete has two children: Kara, 27, and Peter, 25. Mike has three: Christina, 24, Justine, 21 and Michael, 16. How do they afford all these offspring? Pete works as a manager in the Guest Services department at the Meadowlands and Mike is the Eastern Sales Manager for Imperial International. John Giardina (CHS class of ‘69) currently lives in Orangeburg, N.Y. with Christine, his wife of 16

An early, hazy version of Brookwood, back in the day.

years. He started playing bass in his early teens and later moved to lead guitar. At the age of 14 he moved to Clifton and almost immediately crossed paths with Pete and Mike, who soon became friends and musical soul mates. John hung out often at the Cetinich house on Brookwood

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Road and for a time after high school, he actually lived there. While majoring in music at William Paterson college, he started performing with various musicians and bands: Triad, with John and Candy Kurgan, and later Long Train and The Perks, to name a few. John currently works for Citigroup as a senior analyst in the securities systems technology division. Mike, Pete and John grew up together, playing the music they loved: and now Brookwood not only lets them continue to explore these musical roots, but to discover and play more recent tunes as well. But there is no band without a backbeat. Drummer Dan Pugliese, who graduated from Paul VI Regional High School Clifton (1979), is married with one child, Victoria Rose, 12. Coming from a musical family, he started playing drums at the ripe old age of 10 and his Passaic-Clifton UNICO will host its 4th Annual Spring Concert on April 24 at 2 pm at Joey’s, 955 Allwood Rd. Hopeless, Rubber Souls, Brookwood and the Flying Mueller Brothers will perform. Proceeds will go to the CHS Project Graduation, CHS Mustang Marching Band, Passaic Marching Band and Passaic-Clifton UNICO Scholarship Fund. Advance tickets are $10, $15 at the door. For more info call 973-773-2110.

A look back at John Giardina on lead guitar.

brother bought him his first kit while in high school. Dan played in a few high school bands and, afterward, played in an all-original band called L4. He currently works as the District Manager for Kohler Distributing Company, in Hawthorne. When asked if he was enjoying himself rocking once again, Dan replied: The drummer always has fun! But not nearly as much fun as the packed houses that have rocked out to the Brookwood sound.

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10 Clifton Fire Fighters will be recognized at the 2005 Valor Awards Banquet on April 16 in Edison. The Valor Award recipients for Group Medical Effort are Lieutenant

Nicholas Marchisello, Travis McCauley, Ronald Laube, William McMahon and Andrew Zaborniak. The group responded to a call of a drowned child at a backyard pool.

Members of Engine Company 2, from left, Lt. Nick Marchisello, with Firefighters William McMahon and Andrew Zaborniak, along with the boy and his mother.

Upon arrival, the child was unconscious and the men administered medical treatment but could not get a pulse. Through the work of the group, the child regained a pulse on the way to the St. Joseph’s Hospital and made a full recovery. Also to be recognized with the Group Medical Effort Award are Captain Norman Tahan, Kevin Danielson, David McCann, Kenneth Prior and Charles Bolcar. The group responded to a report of an unconscious person. Upon arrival, the patient was found face down in bathroom with a serious laceration to the bridge of his nose from fall onto a vanity and had no pulse and was not breathing. The group immediately administered medical attention and the patient regained a pulse. After stabilizing the patient, he was transported to a local hospital where he successfully recovered.

We will be open May 28 to Labor Day, 10 am to 8 pm daily

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April 2005 • Clifton Merchant

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ome find out about our affordable & convenient oasis in downtown Clifton. Activities include swim lessons, basketball, parties, sand beach, picnicking, volleyball, handball, ping pong and some old-fashioned poolside lounging. Spend your summer with friends and neighbors, just as your parents did.


Clifton’s Plumbing Subcode Official Seymour Goldstern was named the 2005 by the NJ Plumbing Inspectors Association. Goldstern began as an union apprentice in 1952 and in 1969 became a NJ Licensed Master Plumber. He opened Sy Goldstern Inc. in 1975, which he operated until 1997.

Seymour Goldstern

He has worked as Clifton’s Plumbing Inspector for the last 30 years. Goldstern resides in Clifton with his wife of 44 years, Maxime. The two have a son and a daughter and four grandsons. He will be honored on May 5 during the Building Safety Conference of NJ at Bally’s Park Palace in Atlantic City.

Roll Down to IHOP…

Clifton Savings Vice President Dennis Hahofer has retired after serving the institution for over 45 years. While he left his Clifton Ave. office, Hahofer said he has not yet exited the community. He continues on as a member of the Clifton Optimist Club, a membership he has held since 1970. He is now busy selling tickets for the Friend of Youth Beefsteak on May 22. Call Hahofer at 973-835-2474 for tickets.

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Andersen Windows & Doors We Buy Them By The Truckload! We’re a small company that thinks big. Price: At K&S, we buy Andersen windows and doors by the truckload. That means you get great prices from a locally owned supplier. But unlike the big chains, we’ll give you more… Service: At K&S, we make our living on service. So when you deal with us, you’ll talk to the same knowledgeable sales person day after day.

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April 2005 • Clifton Merchant


CHS Boys

Tennis

A

fter an impressive campaign last year that saw the Mustangs go 18-4 with a visit to the states, CHS tennis enters a rebuilding year. However, even with only one letterman returning, Coach Andrea Bobby sees potential. “This is mostly an inexperienced group, but after seeing this team practice, I can say we are certainly starting to gel. Their level of dedication is incredible,” said Bobby “Our guys take it upon themselves to put in time anywhere they can.” The team is lead by senior Paresh Sojitra, the sole returning Varsity member. Bobby expects his experience will help the team grow.

Sophomore standout Zach Ontell will come in at the number two spot with high expectations. “I'm excited about Zach. He has played all winter and really improved his game,” said Bobby. “Those two give us a considerable top two for our singles team.” Senior Sun Wook Kim has been strong during the preseason and Bobby expects him to contribute big this year. Fellow Senior Snahel Patel will also get some time. Keep an eye on Junior John Salierno, who was a standout his freshman year. Although he missed last year with health issues, he is in top shape this year after coming off

Apr 1 Apr 6 Apr 8 Apr 11 Apr 20 Apr 22 May 2 May 4 May 6 May 9 May 11 May 13 May 16

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the basketball season. “John missed school one day and I called to check up on him and he was already out on the tennis court,” laughed Bobby. “That’s how dedicated this team is.”

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F

resh back from Florida where against national ranked competition they compiled a 4-3 record, the Lady Mustangs are ready. They aim to go the distance and after a 27-4 season in 2004 and lots of returning firepower, fourth year coach Juliann Magliarditi predicted there will be another trip to the state finals. “With our talent we absolutely can make it,” she said. “We just have to play to our potential.” The team will once again look to star pitcher Brianne Moore, a junior, who collected first team all county,

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Softball Apr 1

at Bloomfield

4:00 pm

Apr 6

at Barringer

4:00 pm

Apr 8

at Kennedy

4:00 pm

Apr 9

at Passaic Valley

4:00 pm

Apr 13

Montclair

4:00 pm

Apr 15

at Passaic

4:00 pm

Apr 18

Eastside Paterson

4:00 pm

Apr 20

at Holy Angels

4:00 pm

Apr 22

Teaneck

4:00 pm

Apr 23

Clifton Classic

Apr 27

at Nutley

5:00 & 7:00 pm 4:00 pm

Apr 29

at Ridgewood

4:00 pm

May 2

Kennedy

4:00 pm

May 4

at Belleville

4:00 pm

May 6

at IHA

4:00 pm

May 9

Barringer

4:00 pm

May 11

at Montclair

4:00 pm

May 13

Passaic

4:00 pm

May 16

at Eastside Paterson

4:00 pm

May 18

Paramus Catholic

4:00 pm

May 20

Hackensack

4:00 pm

May 23

Paramus

4:00 pm

backed up by seniors Amanda Echevarria, Allison Murray as well as juniors Jenna Pizzimenti and Ashley Terhune. “The chemistry of this team is incredible,” said Magliarditi. “It will take us far.” hair nails color

1385

CHS Girls

league and area awards as well as a third team all state award. Moore went 3-1 in Florida, including two no-hitters. “Brianne is a dominating force and will have another good year.” predicted Magliarditi. Senior co-captains Danielle Lorenzo and Nicole Lavender will also provide excellent leadership. Lorenzo, behind the plate, is a dominating hitter who batted over 300 the last two seasons. Lavender—a vacuum in the outfield, said Magliarditi—is also an accomplished hitter. Around the diamond, senior Dominque Russo, solid last year at DH, will split time at first with sophomore Jill Leonard. Junior Jenny Sichel will be at second. Senior Toni Melillo, who despite an injury last year, is ready to get back in short stop. At third will be senior Jenna Ricciardi. In the outfield, Lavender will be

Call Sheryl at 973.365.0220 to make an appointment. 88 Market Street, Clifton

We Salute All the CHS Athletes!

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HS Baseball coach Rich BelBruno has his eyes set on the division crown. With a nucleus of last year’s team returning, the Mustangs look to vastly improve. “We’ve got decent pitching,” said BelBruno. “The boys have been swinging the bats hard. We look good but the weather has kept us inside way too long.” The eighth year coach preached the importance of pitching and defense, a philosophy echoed by this year’s Mustangs. With many returning Varsity players, this veteran squad is comprised mostly of seniors who know the BelBruno strategy. On the mound, senior John Kondel has been penciled in as the ace and he’ll be supported by fellow senior returnees Doug Ciallella and Mike Hanczaryk. Other hurlers include seniors Adam Satkowski and Eric Zakrzewski and juniors John Tejada and Kevin Weiss.

Senior Adam Bania will return behind the plate once again. Around the diamond, senior standout Adam Satkowski is at first base, John James will mind second and junior Mike Vinciguerra will be the short stop. The versatile Doug Chiallella will play third and be worked in the pitching rotation. Juniors Pat Errico, who can handle any infield position, will see time as will Matt Berret, Jemuel Hernandez and Sergio Irizarry. The outfield is anchored by returning senior Dave Smith, who will shag down fly balls in center. He will be joined in the wings by seniors Bryan Barker and Tom Jacobus and juniors Aldrich Perez, Kevin Weiss and John Tejada. With this veteran Mustang line up, BelBruno’s boys aim to take the division crown and shake things up in the counties this year. 1040

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Kindergarten Registration April 4-8

CHS Boys

Baseball Apr 1 Apr 2 Apr 5 Apr 6 Apr 8 Apr 11 Apr 13 Apr 15 Apr 18 Apr 20 Apr 22 Apr 23 Apr 27 Apr 29 May 2 May 3 May 4 May 6 May 9 May 11 May 13 May 16 May 18 May 20 May 23

Bloomfield at Kenilworth at West Milford Barringer Kennedy at Bergen Catholic at Montclair Passaic at Eastside Paterson Don Bosco Prep at Teaneck at Passaic Cty Tech Nutley Ridgewood at Kennedy Passaic Valley Belleville St. Jospeh at Barringer Montclair at Passaic Eastside Paterson at Paramus Catholic at Hackensack at Paramus

4:00 pm 11:00 am 4:00 pm 4:00 pm 4:00 pm 4:00 pm 4:00 pm 4:00 pm 4:00pm 4:00 pm 4:00 pm 10:00 am 4:00 pm 4:00 pm 4:00 pm 4:00 pm 4:00 pm 4:00 pm 4:00 pm 4:00 pm 4:00 pm 4:00 pm 4:00 pm 4:00 pm 4:00 pm

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egistration for children entering kindergarten in September in the Clifton Schools will be held at each elementary school during April 4 to 8. To be eligible to attend kindergarten next fall, a child must reside in Clifton and be five years of age on or before Oct. 1, 2005. Parents should contact their neighborhood school for registration times. Call 973-470-2260 for phone numbers of the schools or go to www.clifton.k12.nj.us. To register, bring three proofs of residence from among the following documents: house deed, lease, or landlord notarized statement of residency; utility bill; driver’s license or car registration; credit card bill or voter registration card. Also bring the child’s original birth certificate, proof and a copy of a recent physical examination and an immunization record, which must be printed in English.

A list of the child’s special needs, physical requirements and hospitalizations is also requested. Individuals registering a child, other than the student’s natural parents, must also provide a legal proof of custody.

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CHS

Track

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he 2005 Boys Track team has 50 members and is led by Joe Hathaway, a top discus and shotputter in northern New Jersey. He is backed up by Franco D’Argenio and Mike Fego. The top sprinter is junior Ken Biason who is also Clifton’s best long jumper. In the hurdles, seniors Alvin Foster and Honam Ng lead the group; both also compete in the pole vault. The distance group is led by senior Andrew Garcia, juniors Steven Klett and Carlo Santelli, as well as outstanding sophomores Alex Anolik, Chris Bienkiewicz, Mike Tanayan, Sunny Kasabwala and Brian Dunphy. Among the promising members of the team are sprinters Arash Akavi, Adit Desai and David Chin. Coach John Pontes is in his 20th year as head coach and his assistants include Tim St. Claire (throwers), Andrew Piotrowski (pole vault, hurdles, and high jump) and Victor Wu (long and triple jumpers). Pontes said it is due to the help of those coaches, who also assist him with the Indoor Track team, that earned Pontes selection as The Record’s Girls Indoor Track Coach of 2005 for North Jersey.

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ith five athletes taking home honors from Indoor Track, Coach Florence Calise knows she has the experience to field a competitive Girls Track squad this spring. The only thing that worries her? “Injuries,” said Calise. “We have already been hit by injuries and the key to our success is to remain healthy.” Led by captain Marta Leja, this team has a core of talented seniors which includes distance runners Christina Gagliardi, Ashley Gordon and Jerrica Kahwaty. Soccer All-American Nicole Krzysik exhibits her talents in the

long and triple jump as well as the 800. Elizabeth Post heads up the shot put after an impressive winter where she was named to second team all-county. “Our strength lies in pole vault,” said Calise. “We have excellent leadership from Laura Myers (senior captain and second team all-county) and plenty of depth behind her.” The Mustangs will also count on support from sophomore Jessica Torres who recently took home first team all-county, all-around awards. Health withstanding, look for the Mustangs to be in contention come May.

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he Boy’s Volleyball team has its sights set on a sixth consecutive league title, fourth straight county title and first state trophy. Ten veterans from last year’s squad returns as do a few players from the ‘04 JV team. These include seniors Kevin Rodgers and Dejan Pandza, both 1st team allcounty selections last year. Also returning are Owen Shanahan, Elvis Cabrera, Andrew Seitz, Gian Padilla, Narin Ratana, Matt Paluch, Brian Batres, Jeffrey Rocha and Daniel Bjelcevic. Moving up from JV are Michael Hwang, Brian Bychek and Paul Boyko. This lineup and the depth on the bench will make the Mustangs one of the top teams in the state again this year. Defending league and county champions for the past three years, Coach Michael Doktor expects much more out of the ‘05 edition. “Their main goal is to win a state championship,” Doktor stated. “The players realize that there are

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April 2005 • Clifton Merchant

many games and tournaments between now and June 10 (the state final), but we view each day we step onto the court as time to improve to help us reach our goal.” The Mustangs have worked to make that goal a reality. Many players joined the North Jersey Volleyball Club and attend practices

CHS Boys

Volleyball Apr Apr Apr Apr Apr Apr Apr Apr Apr Apr Apr Apr Apr Apr Apr

1 2 5 7 8 9 12 14 15 19 20 21 22 23 27

at Don Bosco Prep 4:00 pm Memorial/JP Stevens 10:00 am Barringer 4:00 pm at Bloomfield 4:00 pm Teaneck 4:00 pm Clifton Varsity Tour. 9:00 am Fairlawn 4:00 pm at Passaic 4:00 pm Wayne Valley 4:00 pm at Eastside Paterson 5:30 pm Vernon/Southern 4:00 pm at East Orange 4:00 pm Garfield 4:00 pm at East Brunswick Tour. 9:00 am Don Bosco Prep 4:00 pm

and tournaments with their club teams. In addition, team members have maintained a strict off-season conditioning program to prepare them for the grueling schedule which awaits them. “They play a lot of games throughout the season and their bodies have to hold up through June,” said Doktor. Apr 28 Apr 30 May 3 May 5 May 6 May 10 May 11 May 12 May 13 May 14 May 16 May 17 May 18 May 19 May 24 May 26 Jun 1 Jun 3 Jun 8 Jun 10

at Hackensack Liv./Eastern/St. Pet./E.Br at Barringer Bloomfield at Teaneck Eastside Newawk PCCA Tour. Passaic Hackensack at PCCA Finals Bergan Tech at West Essex at Wayne Hills Passaic Valley at Lakeland at NJSIAA Tour. NJSIAA 2nd Round NJSIAA Quarter-finals NJSIAA Semi-Finals NJSIAA Finals

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• Total of approximately 400 work stations; student to computer ratio of less than 4:1. • New weight training/conditioning field house, track, and stadium

• Small class size (average of about 25); no class more than 30

• 27 instructional rooms added in recent years, including newly opened wing • 105 courses including 11 AP and 27 Honors level • Class of 2004 earned over $16,000,000 in scholarships/grants

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his season is one of change for Mustang duffers as the team saw long time coach Bill Mandara exit. He is replaced by Chad Cole, who previously coached the team from 1996 through 1998 and is also currently the CHS Girls Tennis coach. Cole said he is taking over a powerful and well prepared team, thanks to the guidance of Mandara. Due to the weather, Cole said the team has not had much practice as of yet but he predicted they will be ready for the opening match against perennial power Bergen Catholic. The team is led by returning seniors Geoff Goodell, Kyle Blacksmith and Jamie Osmak. All three are quality golfers that should lead the team to a successful season. Goodell, an all-county selection the past two years, will anchor the team. Support will come from juniors Brian Bartok, Joe DeSomma and Vincent Federico who have gained a years experience and look to contribute much more this season. Sophomores John Butas, Mike DeFabrizio, Anthony Wrobel and freshmen Rob Meyer and Andrew Hlavaty will challenge each other as they compete for time.

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ew coach Brian Armstrong is starting from the bottom up in redefining the Mustang Lacrosse program and his message to his Varsity players is clear: don’t consider this a rebuilding year. Senior Dustin Scarpa will be at attack with juniors Sean Yip and Tony Nunno. Midfield duties will be handled by seniors Sam Vitellaro, Josh Morales, Adam Ahmad, Luis Miranda and Scott Davies. Armstrong noted that the team relies on its versatility and will aim to mismatch opponents by switching up players. Longsticks will be led by seniors Matt Phillips and Christian O’Campo. Juniors Pat Ferry, Matt Meade, Adam Murray and Brian Fierro will compete for time. Sophomore Dustin Malaszuk will also see action. Armstrong is already impressed with the progress. “This team is learning every day and never makes the same mistake two days in a row,” he said, adding: “People are going to be surprised by Clifton.” A 1998 CHS grad who played and coached at Montclair State University, Armstrong and his staff look to instill a sense of team unity through year round training programs, high energy practices and team dinners while also building for the future by getting involved in rec development leagues.

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Gen Retires – Again ––––––––––– Story by Joe Hawrylko ––––––––––– this time she means it. Genevieve Generalli is really going to retire. Generalli was a Clifton elementary school teacher for 28 years before first retiring in 1998. Soon after, she was named the curator of the Hamilton House Museum on Valley Rd., a job which essentially evolved into a full time avocation. And during those years, she also mentored young teachers coming into the Clifton School system. Reflecting on her June retirement from the Hamilton House, when she intends to move to a new home in Lakewood, it seems Generalli isn’t ready to call it quits just yet. “I’m like the Energizer Bunny,” predicted the 78 year old Grove St. resident. “And now I’m just getting new batteries.” Generalli brought a whirlwind of activity to the Hamilton House, being a catalyst in the revival and use of the historic abode on Valley Rd., near Montclair State University.

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“My emphasis throughout the programs here reflects change,” noted Generalli. “Clifton started with its Dutch heritage 200 years ago and evolved into a community of at least 65 different backgrounds that were richly woven together and produced a colorful tapestry that encompasses the best customs, traditions and lore of many cultures.” “Prejudice is learned, not inborn,” she continued. “Hopefully, some of what I tried to do here leaves a little imprint of some kind.” While she continued programs which reflected the Americana theme of the Hamilton House, Generalli also brought in contemporary poets and hosted art exhibits. The Hamilton House has long been known for its Annual Easter Egg Hunts and visits from St. Nicholas. She also took care of the Old Country Store in the house, which was stocked with old fashioned items from the Craft Circle she organized.

“I’m like the Energizer Bunny... And now I’m just getting new batteries.” –Gen Generalli

For her final act, Generalli has obtained an outhouse to give the house an authentic touch, commonplace here in what was then called Acquackanonk 200 years ago. Funds donated by the Clifton Rotary Club will help pay for this project. During her career in the classroom, she has always been an innovator. A teacher at School 14 on St. Andrews Blvd. for 25 years, Generalli influenced countless children, many of which still keep in touch today. Her years of service were recognized by many, earning her awards including the Clifton Teachers Association Educator of the Year award, the Passaic County Teacher of the Year award, and a nomination from a former student for the national Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers.

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During her professional life, she also found time to raise a family with her late husband Ernest Sr. The two had six children, Roseanne, Janet, Julie, Ernest Jr., Vicky and Robert. “It was always our dream to have a large family,” said Generalli, who had eight grandchildren, one of whom had died. “Even when I was home, I was a teacher. It was a great challenge.” However, the time has come for Generalli to close the books on this chapter in her life and begin anew, this time to a Lakewood retirement

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community. She said she’s leaving the Hamilton House (above) in good shape, in the hands of capable friends. “I'm sure the Craft Circle will continue to take beautiful care of the house,” said Generalli. “However, we could always use more volunteers, especially retired teachers who love history and young children.” At age 78. one would think that Generalli would be slowing down by now but that’s hardly the case. “I’m sure I’ll be causing mischief over there,” Generalli said of her move to Lakewood. “They’ll have to find a way to keep me busy.” 1215

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Living the Dream ––––––––––– Story by Joseph R. Torelli ––––––––––– or Pete Vasil, it’s all about playing ball in March, when going to ‘The Big Dance’ is all that matters. Vasil, a special ed teacher at Woodrow Wilson Middle School, got a twirl of ‘March Madness’ last month when the Bloomfield College team he helps coach advanced to the second round of the NCAA Division II basketball tournament in Waltham, Mass. For Vasil, reaching this year’s Division II regional tournament was made even sweeter by the fact that it was a homecoming of sorts. He was raised in nearby Worcester and played college ball at North Adams State in the Mass. State College Athletic Conference. “Even though we didn’t win it all, bringing a team from New Jersey to compete at an NCAA tournament in front of people I grew up with was an added thrill for me,” he said. The journey to the Division II regional championships was a long one for the forty-something coach. It included a stop in Albania where he played on that country’s national basketball team for five years. He was also head coach in Clifton for seven years. Basketball was always a big part of his life, as a player, coach and fan. “My dad coached a high school team in a neighboring town,” recalled Vasil, “and he had been a small college Hall of Fame player himself. I was always on a basketball court as a kid, either in a local playground or at my dad’s high school gym.” Vasil was also head coach of the CHS boys’ team from 1997 to 2003. During his tenure, the Mustangs had a 65-83 record—it was 41-36 over

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the last three years, he pointed out. They won some big tournaments, making it to the quarterfinals of the state Group 4 playoffs in 2003—the first time a Clifton team had done that since the mid-70s. He gave up the Mustang job after that season, saying he felt ‘burned out.’ A year later Vasil became an assistant to Bloomfield’s head coach George Holmes. “Pete has a tremendous passion for this game,” Holmes

said. “His knowledge and enthusiasm just rubs off on the players.” The same can be said at home. Vasil’s son, Peter, a seventh-grader, played ball this year on the WWMS team. “He’s into the game as much as any kid can be,” said the obviously proud Vasil. And who knows? The younger Vasil just may make it to an NCAA championship tournament himself one day—just like his dad.

Pete Vasil with Houston Rockets guard Mitch Wiggins when they competed in a Masters National Championship game in Florida this past summer. Vasil, also a guard, averaged 17 points and was named All Tournament.

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TIGS & an Angel’s Wish ––––––––––– Story by Joe Hawrylko ––––––––––– haina Lewis is bursting with energy. A fourth year Social Studies teacher at CHS, Lewis’ activities go well beyond the classroom. She coaches the Eastern Division 5th and 6th grade softball teams. She also advises the Animae club, a Japanese cartoon interest group, as well as the TIGS (Teen Institute of the Garden State) organization at CHS. However, her latest endeavor will test her physically and mentally. This June, Lewis will compete in the Angelwish Triathlon. Angelwish is a non-profit organization that raises money for AIDS/HIV research. The program also grants wishes to children who are living with the virus. On June 25, Angelwish will host a triathlon in Belmar to raise funds. Lewis, who learned about the pro-

S

gram from a friend, has decided to challenge her body and participate in the Angelwish Triathlon. “I’ve been training for the last few months,” said the 25 year old

Lewis. The triathlon consists of a 500 meter swim in the Atlantic, a 12.5 mile bike race and finishes with a 3.2 mile run. “I’m just afraid of the ocean swim,” joked Lewis.

Some TIGS members from left, Vanniah Cunningham, Amanda Echavaria—their advisor, CHS teacher Shaina Lewis—Michele Benanti and Danielle Doerflein.

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April 2005 • Clifton Merchant


In addition to swimming 25 laps three times a week in an olympic sized pool, Lewis runs, bikes and competes in softball and volleyball leagues. Along with Lewis, there are 13 other competitors who expect to raise a total of $140,000. “I am close friends with most of the competitors,” noted Lewis. “My friend and I are just out to beat her husband.” To raise the $10,000 she pledged, Lewis enlisted the help of TIGS. In the past, the CHS group has raised funds for the Boys & Girls Club, the Recreation Department, Cerebral Palsy center and cancer research. TIGS will be hosting numerous events to raise the money for the triathlon, including car washes as well as a spring formal. Lewis said donations would be greatly appreciated. Those interested in donating to Shaina Lewis’ Angelwish fund can visit www.angelwish.org/shaina or see a Clifton High School TIGS member.

Unican Nick Genchi, Board of Ed members Lizz Gagnon, Norm Tahan, John Traier and Jim Leeshock with Clifton teachers Arlene Rodgers and Meredith Madden.

Clifton teachers Arlene Rodgers of School 16 and Meredith Madden of School 5 were honored by Clifton-Passaic UNICO for organizing the first Clifton Junior Olympics. UNICO president Ricky Bagolie explained why the teachers were selected: “When funding for the multi-school Olympics for the learning and language impaired dried up, they refused to let the program simply go away. Instead they decided to organize their own event for Clifton’s children.” And they are doing it again on June 4 (rain date June 5) at Christopher Columbus Middle School. Sponsors and volunteers are needed. To help out, or for more info, write to arleney072@aol.com.

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Clifton Merchant • April 2005

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Community Theatre community theatre is an invaluable resource. Theatres can educate, introduce culture or simply create a fun atmosphere. Performances sometimes show an abstract way of life, a different take on a historical event or anything in between. With theatre, the possibilities are only limited by the imagination of the director. Clifton is fortunate to have three performance centers: the YM-YWHA Performing Arts Center, the Action Theatre Company and the New Jersey Music and Arts. Here is a round up of each organization.

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Y-Performing Arts Center After a curtain call for a recent performance of the Diary of Anne Frank at the Y’s Performing Arts Center, Dr. Barry Raphael, a Clifton orthodontist, who played the part of Mr. VanDaam, reflected: “It occurred to me that what once started out as a hobby had actually become a mission for me,” said Raphael. “This particular piece goes far beyond just putting on a play. It has an important story to tell a new generation of children who don’t know the story about an important world event.” Anne Frank was a young Jewish girl who kept a journal while in hiding with her family in Holland during World War II. Her life ended in a concentration camp in March, 1945, just before her 16th birthday. There are several performances about the Holocaust and other Jewish issues that many people know little about. Raphael and others associated with the Y-PAC hopes that the theater will become a forum for this genre, for at least one show a season. The second part of the Y’s mission is to create a quality theater program for general audiences and for lovers

of theater arts. The JCC hired Bernie Malaky, who has Broadway production experience and is now a theater major at Montclair State University, to head the newly formed Y-PAC. His goal is to create a center for performance and education in the arts that will draw attention from the region and create a profit center for the JCC.

Christopher Robertson in rehearsal for ‘Journey’, the Action Theatre Company’s original musical written by Clifton resident Kathleen Kellaigh and Michael Huseman. Journey will premiere on April 15, at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church.

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737 Broad St. Clifton 74

April 2005 • Clifton Merchant

Tel: 973.777.3111 Fax: 973.777.0509

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Currently there are three productions scheduled each year: A children’s production in the fall, a drama in the winter, and a community production where adults and children join together. In June, the Y-PAC will host the musical Children of Eden, which explores the relationships of parents and children through biblical allegory. Malaky has plans for educational resources at Y-PAC as well with classes in performance and production from children to adult to begin next year. The Y theater is also available for concerts and productions by other organizations. The theater seats 500. The stage is large with ample wing space, a light booth, and pit. A fund-raising campaign to upgrade the lighting and sound instruments will begin next year.

Action Theatre Company

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The Action Theatre Company presents Journey, an original musical by Kathleen Kellaigh and Michael Huseman. Journey will premiere on April 15, at St. Peter’s Episcopal Church. Journey provides a contemporary look at the power of love at work in everyday lives. As the characters’ personal paths intertwine and the story unfolds, the audience will see both the dark and light sides of life, as they deal with tragedies, controversial issues and

Cast members of Journey, from rear, Ashley Leeshock, Schuyler Schrickel, Karla Yeamans and Vanessa Laine. In middle, Christopher Robertson, Michael Press, Carrie Nagy, Jonathan Grant and at front Joel Robertson. Other Cliftonites in the cast but not pictured include, Kathleen Kellaigh, Director and Bookwriter/Lyricist; Deanna Lecava, Jeannie Kempa, cast and Rachael Oliver, Assistant to the Director.

daily challenges. Peppered with humor, this ‘Journey’ helps the audience discover a message of encouragement and hope within our tumultuous 21st century existence. The ATC logo bears the phrase ‘art with a heart’ and a portion of every performance in April and

May will be donated to St. Peter’s Haven, which provides shelter and food for people in need in the Clifton area, and also to Oasis, a justice ministry of The Episcopal Diocese of Newark. For tickets and info on Action Theatre Company, call 973-772-6998.

dr. barry raphael p.a.

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Visit us in Downtown Clifton: 1103 Main Ave • 973-473-4999

We Don’t Sell Parts… …We Sell Service Machine Shop On Location No Order Too Large Or Small FREE DELIVERY The ‘Diary of Anne Frank’ was recently presented by Y-PAC, which is housed within the YM/YWHA on Scoles Ave.

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136 Essex St • Rochelle Park Open Sundays

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Visit us in Athenia: 802 Van Houten Ave • 973-473-1997 76

April 2005 • Clifton Merchant

The New Jersey Music and Arts is a performing arts series of music, dance, drama and poetry reading based in Clifton. Founded in 1998 and supported by the Passaic County Culture and Heritage Council, the NJMA provides a family oriented entertainment for audiences of northern New Jersey at inexpensive ticket prices. The series gives training and performance opportunities to young people in professional productions in the area of music, drama and dance and also features professional artists along with the students. NJMA also annually hosts a fully staged opera production by the Garden State Opera. Under artistic director and music instructor Francesco Santelli, the NJMA hosts many events during the year. The NJMA features guest artists and a literature corner as well as performance groups such as


The New Hope Players, The Musical Angels and The One Heart Dancers. On April 3 the One Heart International Festival will be held at Woodrow Wilson Middle School, a diverse showcase of talent. Also, on April 30 there will be a drama workshop presented by Thelma Jones. For more on NJMA, go to http://njma.homestead.com or call Santelli at 973-272-3255.

Christopher Columbus Middle School presents the musical ‘Oz!’ at 7:30 pm on April 7 and 8. It is an adaptation that creatively showcases the middle school student’s talent. Some of the cast members are pictured above. Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for students and seniors. Purchase tickets at the door.

Chinese dancer Elisa Huang Servito, above left, will perform at the One Heart International Festival on April 3 at Woodrow Wilson Middle School, which is produced by NJMA. Past events have featured the Karachay Drummers, above right.

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Clifton Merchant • April 2005

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Dutch Hill Bard to Read lexander Hamilton—the poet —would be proud. His beloved city, Paterson, is being honored by poets. On April 2, The Poetry Center at Passaic Country Community College is marking its 25th anniversary with a poetry reading of the winners in its Celebrating Paterson in Poetry contest. Also being honored is the legacy of two legendary poets who called Paterson home—William Carlos Williams and Allen Ginsberg. Clifton’s own poet, James Gwyn, (dubbed The Bard of Dutch Hill in a past article) will be one of the participants. He will share his winning poem, It Happened Here, In Paterson, which is about a visit to the Paterson Museum with his young sons, Matthew and Gregory. It reminds us that history is our life. Each of us could be making history, to be remembered sometime in the future—like Larry Doby, or Last year in Colonial Williamsburg, Gregory, Matthew, and James Gwyn (left to John Holland, or the Curtiss-Wright right) clown around and convert Thomas Jefferson to a 1961 Yankees fan. machinists who made the engine to The Poetry Center, under the Literary Review. Admission to the Lindbergh’s plane, or even direction of Executive Director, April 2 event is free. Directions to Hamilton himself—by the words Maria Mazziotti Gillan, is interna- The Poetry Center and a list of other It Happened Here, In Paterson. tionally known for its annual Allen winners can be found by visiting the Gwyn’s poem will appear in Ginsberg Poetry Awards, The Poetry Center website which is at Paterson, The Poets’ City, an Paterson Poetry Prize, and, among http://www.pccc.cc.nj.us/poetry/ or anthology of the winning poems. other publications, The Paterson by calling 973-684-6555.

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April 2005 • Clifton Merchant

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utism speaks and it will have its say on April 21. That’s when Angela Montague will host an Autism Awareness Dinner. It’s a fundraiser which she hopes will allow Clifton residents to learn more about this developmental disease which statistics show a child is born with every 20 minutes. Autism generally appears between the ages of 15 and 20 months of age. In most cases, the child is progressing normally and then begins to regress, losing speech, social skills and physical abilities. Montague, who works as a Paraprofessional at School 14, helps to educate the growing number of Clifton children with autism. “Clifton recently added an autistic child program and we are constantly getting more children in the system,” added Montague. By working one-on-one with autistic children, Montague interacts with them and encourages their development. In addition, she also organizes fieldtrips and other activities so that the children feel more at ease in society. Beyond the classroom, Montague said she wanted to do more and by organizing this fundraiser, she found a way she could help. “I was watching a special on autistic children and learned about Autism Speaks, a group that raises funds and awareness for autism,” she recalled. “After I saw the show I decided that I had this idea.” Montague planned an Autism Awareness Fundraiser Dinner on April 21 at 7 pm at the Clifton Moose Lodge, on Main Ave. The $25 ticket price includes a pasta dinner, salad, roll, soda, coffee and dessert. “The food will be donated by local restaurants and the hall and everything else will be donated

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April is Autism Month

by the Moose Lodge,” added Montague. “The community has been very generous.” Now she’s hoping people will attend the dinner. Anyone who wishes to purchase tickets to the April 21 event or donate funds should make a check to Autism Speaks and mail it to

Angela Montague, 246 Harding Ave., Clifton 07011. For more info visit www.autismspeaks.org or call Angela Montague at 973-546-6512.

Doctor, why does my child’s

Ear Ache? • Otitis media means inflammation of the middle ear. Ear infections develop from blockage in the eustachian tube due to a cold or allergies. This creates bacteria which then leads to the accumulation of fluid behind the eardrum, which may rupture under the pressure. However, when the eardrum bursts, it may not fully drain due to the inflamed eustachian tube, which can lead to frequent recurrences. • Ear infections are generally easily treatable. Symptoms for infants include crying, fever, ear drainage, scratching at the ear or hearing problems. Children and adults may experience pain, hearing problems, loss of balance, nausea, ear drainage or fever. • If you suspect an ear infection, you should contact your doctor so he can properly diagnose the problem and remedy it.

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Clifton Merchant • April 2005

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Birthdays!

Hawrylko brother birthdays: Tom, Jr. turns 18 on 4/16 and Joe (at right) is 20 on 4/27. Their pup, Bob Marley turns 1 on 4/4.

Timothy Hayes ........................ 4/1 Hetal Patel .............................. 4/1

Best wishes to Matt Sagui whose 18th birthday is 4/3. Raymond DeDios.................... Carl DiGisi ................................ Eric Homsany .......................... Joey Scotto ............................ Bo Franko ................................ Wafa Othman ........................ Mark Peterson ........................ Bob Tanis .................................. Joe Franek .............................. Jessica Mondelli...................... Patricia Colman...................... Sheryll Franko .......................... Jackie Henderson ..................

4/3 4/3 4/3 4/4 4/5 4/5 4/5 4/5 4/6 4/6 4/8 4/8 4/8

Happy 50th birthday to Marylou Menconi on 4/9!

Emma Gretina ........................ 4/9 Gerta Antes .......................... 4/10 Corky Holm ............................ 4/11 Felipe Rivera .......................... 4/11 Erin Smith ................................ 4/11 Debbie Tucker........................ 4/11 Doreen Delancy-Williams .....4/12 Josh Ontell .............................. 4/13 Adam Pienciak ...................... 4/15 Robert Monzo ........................ 4/16 Linda Humphrey .................... 4/17

Happy 57th birthday and a Special Prayer to Mary Ann Menconi on 4/13. Peter Fierro ............................ Jason Dubnoff ...................... Bryan Rodriguez .................... Alicia Rose Aste ....................

A family affair — happy first b-day to Luke Kulesa on 4/7, and to his mom Lisa on 4/15. Lori Hart .................................. Dan Shumack ........................ Alyssa Tucker.......................... Lisa Sassine ............................ Danny Gorun ........................ John Pogorelec Jr. ................ Marc Scancarella ................ Katie Michelotti .................... Stephanie Magaster ............ Daniel Ricca .......................... Elise Termyna ........................ Michael Press ........................ Kristin Triolo ............................ April Graham ........................ Paul Colman .......................... Heather Halasz ...................... Christine Klein ........................

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Belated Birthdays: Mary Stelmaski celebrated her 101st birthday on 3/20. Also, Ted Grzybowski, 3/6 & Joe Rusnak, 3/7.

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April 2005 • Clifton Merchant

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Joe & Darlene Franek, 4/6 Brian & Tere Kirk, 4/8 Peter & Eileen Fierro, 4/18 John & Donna Hawrylko, 4/28 Charlie & Frances Stek, 4/28


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From Lakeview Ave • Enter on Mina Ave • Exit on Rosalie Ave Clifton Merchant • April 2005

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The Clifton Optimist Club will honor the Clifton Special Police with the Judge Joseph J. Salerno Respect for Law award, Tom Miller will receive the Stanley Zwier Community Service award and Tom Fieldhouse gets the 2005 Friend of Youth award at a Beefsteak on May 22, 4 pm at the Boys & Girls Club. Tickets are $35. For info, call Tom Hawrylko at 973-253-4400. A Civil War organization, Co. B, the 2nd Rhode Island Volunteer Infantry, will conduct a living history encampment at Morris Canal Park on April 2 and 3. Members of the group will live in the park for the two days much as soldiers did during the time of the blue and gray. Residents are invited to visit and see the goings-on. For pixs and info: www.freewebs.com/aaronsiegel. Some of the Clifton Special Police Officers top brass include, rear from left: Bob Bracken Sr., Lance DeMuno, and Vincent Colavitti Sr., Front from left: Steve Ruppert, Jim Derco and Larry Posey.

Dr. David R. Moore, Chiropractor

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April Patient of the month is Bobbi Tiebel. Bobbi is a breast cancer survivor who beat cancer with a healthy lifestyle that includes diet, exercise, and chiropractic care. Bobbi inspires her clients as a personal trainer at the Elmwood Park Athletic Club. Mon • Wed • Fri Chiropractic Health Center 241 Crooks Ave • Clifton • 973.253.7005

Sports Injuries • Car Accidents Family Practice 82

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Tue • Thu • Sat Elmwood Park Athletic Club 690 River Dr • Elmwood Park • 201.794.0155


Celebrating 100 Years of Serving our Community

East Ridgelawn Cemetery... ...invites you to visit our Mausoleum on Main Avenue to see the inspirational art adorning our new building. Within the Mausoleum, our artist has painted a serene and peaceful view, entitled ‘Eden’, pictured above, where visitors can pause to celebrate the lives of those who have passed.

At the Mausoleum... Visits are unlimited and unaffected by the weather. Crypts are located in the building and convenient for elderly and handicapped. Mausoleum entombment provides greater Peace of Mind & Security. • non-sectarian • niches

• mausoleum • garden graves

• monumental graves • no obligation pre-need counseling • financing available one-year at no interest on easy monthly plans

East Ridgelawn Cemetery 255 Main Avenue, Clifton, NJ 07014 for more information with no obligation call:

973.777.1920


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Clifton

$759,000

Clifton

$339,900

Clifton

$349,900

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$529,900

Clifton

$399,900

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$429,900

Beautiful Mother & Daughter One Family home in a great area. 3 large bdrms, Living Room, Dining Room, Eat-In-Kitchen, 2 and 1/2 baths, 2car garage.

Very well kept House 2 family home with one car garage, 6 rooms, 3 bdrms on 1st floor. And 3 rooms 1 bdrm on the 2nd floor. Ask for Sophia for more details.

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$359,900

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Condo / Gated Community Cambridge Heights off Main Ave. Barrister model, LR, DR, KIT, 2BRs, 2 bath + loft. C/A 2nd floor unit w/deck. Excellent condition. Call Dave Kelley.

One Family Home Offers enclosed sun porch, FDR, LR with natural woodwork, EIK, 3 bdrms, bath on 2nd floor, Fin room in attic. Driveway, garage.

Expanded Cape Super Sized Cape w/lrg rooms. Kit with dining area, 2 bdrms, office area, large family room. 2 bdrms on 2nd floor, fin bsmnt with summer kit, drive + garage.

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Profile for Clifton Merchant Magazine

Clifton Merchant Magazine - April 2005  

Clifton Merchant Magazine - April 2005