Page 1

December 2019

Readington Church with Branchburg Roots Celebrates Tricentennial In 1719, a group of Dutch and English colonists worshipped in a log cabin near the confluence of the North and South Branches of the Raritan River, in what is now Branchburg. On Sunday, Oct. 27, 2019, the public was invited to commemorate the 300th anniversary of this humble beginning for Readington Reformed Church, now located in Readington village. After a celebration of history and music, a reception followed in the nearby hall of the Readington Volunteer Fire Company, which serves both Readington and Branchburg Townships. “Today we celebrate many gifts God has bestowed on our congregation, including this beautiful sanctuary, dedicated in 1865,” explained Church Elder Karen Weber. “A church, however, is not a building.” Elder Ken Iselin, a 50-year member who manages the cemetery, buildings and grounds explained further, “Before that first log cabin church was built, a lay reader and chaplain named Guilliam Bertholf

Year of Commemoration Will Continue at Christmas Eve Service

State Champions– The Somerville High School Marching

Band and Color Guard won the USBands Group V A 2019 State Championship in Hillsborough on Oct. 30. Pictured are SHS Color Guard Captains Katie Updegrove (left) and Colin Sheeley (far right) and SHS Marching Band Drum Majors Kevin Lauducci and Amanda Hegadorn, (center), all Branchburg students at the Ville. With over 600 ensembles participating in fall events across 20 states, USBands has grown to become the largest independent scholastic music organization in the nation. The SHS Marching Band also won first place at the Yamaha Cup competition at MetLife Stadium Oct. 5. See photos and info at -- Photo above courtesy of @Somerville NJ High School PTO

visited faithful Dutch families. He worked as a cooper who bent wooden planks into barrels. But colonists convinced him to travel to Holland for theological training.” The church traces its roots to the Dutch Reformed Church, though its denomination became The Reformed Church in America. Among the civic leaders that spoke about local and church history were former US Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen and NJ Assemblyman Andrew Zwicker. Frelinghuysen’s ancestor, Theodorus Frelinghuysen, was the church’s first pastor. Zwicker spoke about the third pas-

tor, Jacob Rusten Hardenburgh, a friend of George Washington and founder of Rutgers University. He spread seeds of freedom and equality in his sermons and went on to ratify the Declaration of Independence and help compose the NJ State Constitution. While Dutch Reformed leaders wrote and signed our national dec-

larations and constitutions, here in Readington, black members were restricted to Civil War-era balconies and buried in the historic “Cherry Hill” segregated graveyard. Only in the last 50 years did women gain the right to serve as ordained leaders—including the last two pastors. Janet Cole, the continued on page 4

Three hundred years ago, a log church was built on the northwest corner of Old York Road and North Branch River Road in what is now Branchburg. It burned in 1737 and was rebuilt in Readington. This drawing of the log church appears in the Images of America book “Branchburg,” published by Arcadia Publishing in 1995, and authored by William A. Schleicher, Susan J. Winter and Robert Bouwman. The drawing is credited in the book to the Branchburg Historical Society.


• Pre Buy Heating Oil • Gasoline • Ceiling Cap Heating Oil • Diesel Fuel • One Million Gallon Storage • Emergency Service

Family Owned & Operated

413 U.S. Highway 22 Whitehouse, NJ 08888

908-534-2125 •

The Branchburg News • December 2019


Upcoming Events Editors & Publishers: Bill Haduch, Monita Casey Haduch Advertising Manager: Heather Sanchez Writer/Ad Sales: Karen C. Muller Design & Layout: Jacki Hasko Web Manager: Steve Skladany Mailing Services: Mike Sanchez Art:: Kevin Gora, Cathy Zehr, Megan Moore The Branchburg News is mailed monthly, free-of-charge to every mailing address in Branchburg Township. Free copies are also available for distribution in places of business, schools, and municipal offices. DEADLINES FOR NEXT ISSUE January 2020 December 10 For Ad Materials December15 For News Materials The Branchburg News is not liable for failure to publish an ad, for typographical errors, or errors in publication, unless, in our judgment, the error materially affects the content and advertising value of the ad. Compensation will not exceed the cost of the space in which an error occurs. The Branchburg News has the right to refuse any advertisement for any reason, and is not responsible for claims made by advertisers. We ask our readers to keep us informed of any misleading advertisements. Phone/Fax: 1-800-530-3046 Email: Mailing address: P.O. Box 5351 Branchburg, NJ 08876 Web:

A Creative Resources/ Town Media Newspaper ©2019 Creative Resources/ Town Media, All Rights Reserved


Pancakes with Santa, Dec. 7 From 8 to 11 am at the Bradley Gardens Community Church, Pancakes, sausage, hash browns, scrambled eggs, coffee, tea, and orange juice. Suggested donation is $8 -$10 per person. Bring your own devices (cameras/phones) and have your picture taken with Santa. Location is 124 Old York Road, Bridgewater  908-722-0878.

Winter Wonderland Dec. 13 From 6:30 to 8 pm at Kangaroo Kids Child Care and Learning Center. Free and open to the public. Appropriate for children under 10 years of age. Photos with Santa; photographer available for professional family photos. Sing-a-long, gingerbread house display, craftmaking, giving tree to help those in need. For details and more in, call 908-231-7800, email staff@kangaHoliday Cut-A-Thon or like Kan& Toy Drive, Dec. 7 garoo Kids Child Care Facebook At Somerset County Vo-Tech High page. Event location is 1047 Rte 28 School on Dec. 7 from 9 am to 1 in Branchburg. pm. Hosted by SCVTHS Cosmetology to promote childhood cancer awareness. Proceeds donated to Cure Search and toys to Memorial Sloan Kettering Pediatric Center. Great deals ont cutting, styling, Somerset County Prosecutor Mimini manicures, nail art, treatchael H. Robertson and Chief of ments, small area waxing and more. County Detectives John W. Fodor To make an appointment, call Mrs. announced an investigation into a Francis/Ms. G at 908-526-8900 motor vehicle theft that occurred in ext. 7260/7128. Email jfrancis@ Branchburg Nov. 5. or The prosecutor said during the Dutch Sint-Nicolaas Day Event early morning hours Nov. 5, a 2013 Dec. 8 Black Dodge Charger was stolen From 1 to 4 pm, the Readington in the area of Mathers Lane in the Museums will host Dutch Sint- township. This was the fourth stoNicolaas Day at the 1741 Bou- len vehicle that week in addition to man-Stickney Farmstead to honot several motor vehicle burglaries in the Dutch heritage of the historic the area. Neighboring townships property. Colonial musicians, 18th of Readington, Bridgewater and century cookie and candy making, Hillsborough have also had several Ornaments to craft and take home. stolen motor vehicle and a stolen This is a free family friendly event, motorcycle. although donations will be grateThe motor vehicles that were burfully accepted. In case of inclement glarized were unlocked, and all the weather, call the Museums to find vehicles stolen had the keys or key out the status of the program. For fob left inside the vehicle. The prosmore info, visit www.readingtont- ecutor warns citizens to not leave keys or key fobs in vehicles and to museum or call 908-236-2327. make sure to lock vehicles, even The farmstead is located at 114 when parked in the driveway. Dreahook Road in the Stanton secMeanwhile, in Readington on tion of Readington. For GPS use Nov. 7, a 15-year-old boy from NewLebanon, NJ 08833. ark was arrested after a police chase.


Dec. 2, 16. 30 For info call 732-469-3363 or visit www.

Readington police reported that while on routine patrol around 12:20 a.m., officers discovered three vehicles driving slowly along Dreahook Road. When an officer tried to stop them, “the three vehicles accelerated and attempted to flee,” police said. The chase ended in Clinton Township when one of the vehicles crashed, and the driver was taken into custody. The other suspects fled. A follow up investigation revealed that the suspects arrived in Readington in a vehicle that had been stolen in Newark. They then took two vehicles from a home on Dreahook Road, police said. One vehicle was stolen from the driveway and the second vehicle was taken from the resident’s garage, according to police. To get

into the garage, the suspects used a garage door opener from the unlocked car in the driveway. Anyone with information relating to the Branchburg car theft is asked to contact the Branchburg Police Department at 908-5263830 or via the STOPit app. The STOPit app allows citizens to provide anonymous reports including videos and photos. STOPit can be downloaded to your smart phone for free at the Google Play Store or Apple App Store, access code: SOMERSETNJ. Information can also be provided through the Somerset County Crime Stoppers’ Tip Line at 1-888-577-TIPS (8477). All anonymous STOPit reports and Crime Stopper tips will be kept confidential.

Friendly Family Dentistry

Email items to

Kyle Cook

We like your text as a simple email message, with your photo simply attached as a JPG. For more info, visit www.branchburgnews. com, click on “How to Send News & Photos.”

CALL AD MANAGER HEATHER SANCHEZ AT 908-963-2680 More info at, click on “How to Advertise.”

Christmas Eve Services, Dec. 24 At Bradley Gardens Community Church. At 7 pm, candlelighting, guitar music. At 11 pm, candlelighting, choir, solos, guitar. Location is 124 Old York Road, Bridgewater 908-722-0878.

This Month’s

Branchburg Police Seeking Witnesses in Motor Vehicle Theft


Coffee with the Mayor, Dec.14 From 9:30 am to 11 am at the Municipal Building. Listen, talk and learn about townhip happenings and issues in a casual setting.


We Sells Homes Faster & For More!!  Top Producing Local Agents Complimentary Home Valuation & Consultation! Call the agency that works for YOU!

Let your smile be a sign of happiness and good health.

New Patients Welcome!

Joseph R. Krulewicz, D.M.D. Family Dentistry 3461 Route 22 County Line Rd. Branchburg, New Jersey 08876 (908) 526-4747




Election Results

ng Cateri ble a Avail

Election Day 2019, From a Poll Worker’s Viewpoint

Pasta Night Monday-Tuesday

Football Special • Large Cheese Pizza • 12 Wings • 12 Garlic Knots

$20.99 + tax Cash Only Not to be combined with any other offers. Valid during Football Season.

Now Offering a Gluten Free Menu

Specializing in Braces & Invisalign

Complimentary New Patient Exam Robert L. Sanford, DMD 908.722.5233 1353 Prince Rodgers Ave., Bridgewater, NJ 08807

Brace yourself... for the smile of your life!

Celebrating 24 Years of Excellence in Early Learning!


A few days after the election, this punkin-headed Halloween doll proudly continued to wear her “I Voted” sticker.

By Rita E. Jordan How a little sticker can bring such pride and joy is simply amazing. On Nov. 5, Election Day, these delightful “I Voted” stickers were given out at the polls. Never before in Branchburg Township had this happened. There they were in the box to give out by the poll workers after someone voted. There were squeals of joy and delight, and they were immediately put on the voters’ jackets. How did this come about? For several elections now, there were people who asked for them, and we had to tell them we don’t give them out. “But they get them in other places, I’ve seen them. We should have them, too!” was the reply. It was almost a demand. After a bit of investigating, we were told that Maggie Schmitt, our Township Clerk, managed to get the job done. Maggie Schmitt, the poll workers of District 5 and District 10 salute you! We had such an enjoyable day. Did you know that these two districts (5 and 10) vie with one another to see which district has the best voter turnout percentagewise? Folks who vote at the Branchburg Rescue Squad are quite good voters. Whereas at the Primary Election of this year, only 8% turned out to vote, for this General Election both districts netted 25%. That was much better, but really not great. However, between the glee of receiving “I Voted” stickers and an increase in voters, the poll workers had a very pleasant day. It’s a long day beginning at 5:15 am to 8 pm, with a little break to eat and vote. The presidential election is coming and we hope you will make us really busy. The last presidential election netted 85%. I think Branchburg can do better than that!

Wishing you a Happy & Healthy Holiday Season! PENDING























Pat Deseno & Michelle Lee 302 US Hwy 202/206 Bedminster Direct : 908.872.9287 Email: Website: Zillow 5 Star Realtors


The Branchburg News • December 2019

There were no surprises in the Nov. 5 General Election. On Thursday, Jan. 2 at 7 pm, Branchburg Township will hold its annual reorganization meeting at the Municipal Building (when officials are sworn in). Following are the results from the Nov. 5 election: Branchburg Township Committee: Republicans Tom Young (2283) and Bob Petrelli (2256) outpolled Democrats Monica Lazer (1448) and Peter Nehad (1376). New Jersey Assemby, 16th Legislative District: Overall winners were Democrats Andrew Zwicker and Roy Freiman. In Branchburg, Repubicans Mark Caliguire ((2244) and Christine Madrid (2231) outpolled Zwicker (1151) and Freiman (1453). Somerset County Sheriff: Overall winner was Democrat Darrin Russo. In Branchburg, Bill Parenti (2451) outpolled Russo (1460). Board of Chosen Freeholders: Overall winner was Democrat Melonie Marano. In Branchburg, Pat Walsh (2286) outpolled Marano (1435). State Public Question about giving certain veterans’ benefts to residents of retirement communities: Overall, the question passed. In Branchburg, Yes (1942), No (1228). School Election: Winners were Olga Phelps (2179), Keerti Purohit (1734) and Jon Sarles (153 write-in votes) Editor’s note: there were three open seats on the BoE, but only two candidates submitted petitions to be on the ballot (Phelps and Purohit).


The Branchburg News • December 2019


Nutcracker, A Christmas Carol at RVCC


continued from page 1

church’s vice president, told how Fannie Hazen Drew was one of Cornell University’s first 11 women, though she complained her professors considered her invisible. Wife of Readington’s longest serving pastor, Rev. Benjamin Van Doren Wyckoff, Fannie helped him serve the congregation from 1884 to 1929. Wilma Cole, one of the first female elders in the church’s denomination added, “Fannie was very visible here at Readington. She began a Bible study for women. With 13 other women, Fannie began Readington’s Mission Society. It grew to 130 women members. Women like Fannie laid the groundwork for today’s women leaders.” “Like our congregation, this building has been renewed and rebuilt, many times over,” explained the church’s 23rd pastor, Rev. Liz Estes. When a terrible fire tore down their third building in 1864, they rebuilt the current and fourth sanctuary. In 1913, strong winds toppled the tower. They rebuilt it again. In 2007, the 22nd pastor, Rev. Cathy Gumpert oversaw a new sanctuary redesign. The tower was rebuilt once more in 2013. Readington Mayor Betty Ann Fort said the event’s theme: “Deeply Rooted in Faith – Grow-

Church Elders Karen Weber and Ken Iselin presented the early history of the church at the October celebration.

ing in God’s Love,” highlighted the church’s efforts to build a caring community. In the past 27 years, the congregation has provided meals and shelter for women and children through the Family Promise non-profit, the only shelter for homeless families in Hunterdon County. Six times a year, for one week at a time, volunteers cook dinners, read stories, play games, and stay overnight with families seeking permanent homes. An Old-World Christmas Eve Service, on Dec. 24 at 7 pm, continues the 300-year celebration of music and history. Readington Reformed Church is located at 124 Readington Rd, in Readington. -- submitted by Susan Sohl, with Branchburg info added

Celebrate the season at The Theatre at Raritan Valley Community College with two delightful holiday classics – The Great Russian Nutcracker and A Christmas Carol. The Great Russian Nutcracker, presented by Moscow Ballet, will be performed Sunday, Dec. 1, at 1 and 5 p.m. Tickets cost $50 and $60 each. One of the most highly anticipated events of The Theatre at RVCC’s season, The Great Russian Nutcracker features dazzling costumes, towering puppets, stunning sets, and the exquisite artistry of 40 world-class Russian dancers. An ethereal Dove, a messenger of peace, leads Masha and the Nutcracker to the peaceful kingdom. Beloved Russian fairytale characters, Father Christmas and his granddaughter the Snow Maiden, add to the whimsical and imaginative storytelling that sets this Nutcracker apart. As is the custom, the students of Gotta Dance will perform

along with the professional dancers of the world-renowned company. Caroline Hidalgo and Gillian Peterson coordinate the auditions and rehearsals for the approximately 100 young dancers from Gotta Dance. The production will be enhanced by a special Nutcracker Tea Party event, Dec. 1, from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m., in RVCC’s Event Center. Tickets to the Tea Party, which is held between performances of The Great Russian Nutcracker, cost $30 for adults, $25 for children. Guests will enjoy a sumptuous assortment of homebaked sweet treats, seasonal tea and homemade hot cocoa. And, as an extra-special treat, each child can have his or her picture taken with a Moscow Ballet ballerina. The photo is included in the Tea Party ticket price. The event

is recommended for children age four and older. To purchase tickets or for more information, call the Box Office at 908-725-3420, or order online. Nebraska Theatre Caravan’s production of A Christmas Carol will be presented Saturday, Dec. 14, at 2 p.m. Tickets cost $50 and $60 each. This celebrated adaptation of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol weaves the spellbinding fable of a man who is given the rarest of gifts: the chance to change. Alive with color and movement and rich with thrilling ensemble music—including moving renditions of favorite holiday carols— features a cast of 23 performers, live musicians and Broadwaystyle scenery and costumes. To purchase tickets or for more information about any Theatre at RVCC production, call the Box Office, 908-725-3420, or order online at Subscribers’ packages are available. Senior citizen, student and group discounts are also available for most performances.

Enrolling for the 2019-2020

Preschool and Kindergarten school year Call to reserve your spot 908-534-0026

A Bright Start To A Brilliant Future Begins Here! 908-534-0026 •


TONY SERRA Announcing the opening of the...

Conflict Resolution Center of NJ An enlightened approach to resolving family and business-related conflict outside the litigation process at a fraction of the cost. To learn more about our services, visit us at or call (908) 691-2707. Located at 3594 U.S. Highway 22 W. in Whitehouse Station, just east of the Ryland Inn (use Somerville for GPS purposes).

Garage Doors and Openers We Have Moved! Visit Our New Showroom & Parts Counter 952 Route 202 South, Branchburg, NJ (Next to Rescue Squad)

908-722-5785 •

BEF’s 5K Made Room for Lots of Turkey On Sunday, Nov. 17, 11 days until Thanksgiving, the Branchburg Education Foundation (BEF) held its inaugural 5K at White Oak Park – the “Make Room for Turkey” run. Results on Compuscore showed a total roster of 128 runners. Following is a list of 43 runners who listed their addresses as Branchburg or Neshanic Station: Maria Acero, Lauren Bockus, Erin Bontempo, Lauren Bouziotis, Dawn Capozzi, K Carmody, Z Carmody, Thomas Carter, Calum Dingwall, Y Eldegwy, Dean Flanagan, Elodie Flanagan, Lorrie-Ann Flanagan, E Gelino, Z Gelino, Kristin Herman, Eleni Iannella, L Iannella, Aimee Mallory, C Mallory, J Mangiaracina, Miichelle Mangiaracina, Jennifer Neumann, Jompo Olabisi, Shannon Oliver, Dhruvi Pai, Malind Pai, Manisha Patel, Karen Perlman, J Przybylski, Kameron Przbylski, Steven Quintavalla, Mary Jane Rogers, Katie Singh, Kelley Sokolowski, Charles Szrom, Christopher Talish, Carson Torchio, E Tkacs, Kristine Tkacs, A Wizemann, Michelle Wright, J Zuklie. Complete results are posted at

Runners jumped off to a fast start through the park’s playing fields and paths. The BEF posted the following at BranchburgEducationFoundation/ : “Thanks to a strong first year turnout, the event was very successful, and will help us continue to fund awesome programs

for our students. If you were there, we hope you had a great experience. Next year will be bigger and better! ”Big thanks go to: Our great team of volunteers; Our sponsors, Nine Dotz Consulting and Access Medical Associates, for providing water and snacks for the runners;

Compuscore, for flawlessly handling the race timing and tracking; Initial Impact, for a great job and fast turnaround on our t-shirts and banners; The Branchburg Rescue Squad for being on hand in case of emergency; and of course, all of the participants that made the event a success.”

The Interfaith Hospitality Network of Somerset County (IHNSC), with Williams-Sonoma, is sponsoring a Holiday Cookie Bake-Off and Sale to raise funds to help homeless families in Somerset County gain independence. Youth and adults are invited to submit their favorite cookie in the contest. First prize in each age category is a cooking class for 10 people at Williams-Sonoma. Final judging will take place on Saturday, Dec. 7 at 10 am at Williams-Sonoma, Bridgewater Commons. Rules and the entry form are available at www.ihnsc. org/bakeoff. Home-baked cookies will also be for sale during the event to benefit IHNSC. For over 25 years, IHNSC has provided emergency shelter, case management and support services to homeless families in Somerset County. For more information, call IHNSC at 908-704-1920.


The Branchburg News • December 2019

IHN Cookie Bake-Off and Sale is Dec. 7

The Branchburg News • December 2019


New Bridge on River Road Could be Open by June Draft drawings of a new River Road bridge that could replace the deteriorated span demolished in October have been received by Branchburg Township from the New Jersey Department of Transportation. (NJDOT). The drawings were produced by the NJDOT. Township Administrator Greg Bonin told The Branchburg News “Based on the current DOT design, the bridge will have An NJDOT draft drawing of a possible bridge design as seen from the side. two 10-ft. cartways and two fiveft. shoulders for a total width of 30 feet. The bridge orientation/ placement is very similar to the old wooden bridge. “The NJDOT and NJ Transit are mandating high fencing as this bridge goes over the rail tracks and meets their current standards.” In an email, Bonin wrote “DOT is telling us the project will be put out to bid in December, contract awarded in early 2020 and they hope to see an open bridge by June 2020.” An NJDOT draft drawing of a possible bridge design as seen from the roadway,

White House Bride Opens at Shoppes at the Farm

– The new White House Bride luxury bridal boutique celebrated its grand opening on Nov. 10 at The Shoppes at the Farm in Whitehouse Station. Seen above, cutting the sparkly ribbon are, from left, Mark Hartman and Melinda McPhail, owners, Shoppes at the Farm; Betty Ann Fort, Readington Township Mayor; Stacie Hiras, owner, White House Bride, and her husband Mike Hiras. The grand opening event included boutique tours, a ribbon cutting, champagne toast, chamber music performed live by a string ensemble, and a wedding vendor fair at The Shoppes at the Farm, 667 US 22 East. The bridal shop (formerly Sara’s Boutique 22 on Route 22 East in Branchburg) opened front and center in the cluster of white buildings facing Route 22 at the Shoppes complex. The boutique offers a unique selection of dresses to suit every bride and member of the bridal party, in a luxurious but approachable space. Contact Stacie at 908526-3134,, and @White_House_Bride.

heading toward Station Rd. and Route 22.


McAdam Chiropractic 794 Route 202/206N, Bridgewater, NJ


Radial Shockwave Therapy

(EPAT, Radial Pulse Therapy) Insurance Accepted - Same Day Appointments A non-invasive, effective treatment for soft tissue injury Treatment has been scientifically proven to help relieve chronic pain: Plantar

Fasciitis Hip Bursitis Achilles Tendonitis Shoulder Tendonitis Heel Pain Tendonitis Ankle Pain Tennis Elbow Piriformis Syndrome


Certified in A.R.T. Active Release Technique Soft Tissue Treatment


South Branch Reformed Church Preschool

(908) 369-7885

870 River Road Hillsborough, NJ 08844 Email:

Preschool Programs 2 Day, 3 Day, 5 Day, & Extended Day Programs 9:00am-12:00am & 9:002:30 (4 & 5 year olds only) Also Lunch Bunch (12-1)



HUNTERDON FAMILY MEDICINE AT BRIDGEWATER 250 Route 28, Suite 100, Bridgewater, NJ 08807 Phone: 908-237-4135 1251 US HWY 22 West, Bridgewater, NJ 08807 Phone: 908-237-4005 WALK-INS WELCOME

Hunterdon Healthcare Your full circle of care.


Troop 90 attends Jersey Jam Scout Jamboree

RVCC Instant Decision Day is Dec. 12 A streamlined way to apply to Raritan Valley Community College will take place on Dec. 12. Instant Decision Day is an ideal opportunity for college students considering transferring to RVCC in January for the spring semester, recent high school graduates who are ready to start college, and adults who are thinking about returning to the classroom to prepare for a new career. The event takes place from 10 am to 7 pm at the Event Center on the Branchburg campus. Register in advance at For additional information, contact the Admissions Office at 908-526-1200, ext. 7009 or

The Neshanic Volunteer Fire Co. will, again this year, bring Santa around town in our service area, handing out candy canes on Dec. 15 (Rain date is Dec. 22.) Additionally, the Neshanic Fire Co. and Santa will be available to deliver a Christmas gift to your child on Dec. 21, late afternoon and early evening. If you wish to participate in this gift-giving gesture for a donation of $25 or more, please bring the wrapped gift you want delivered to your child to the firehouse at 333 Maple Ave, Neshanic Station on any one of these three dates – Dec. In the photo above, front row: Andrew D’Alessio, Ryan Bellek, Richard Belt, fireworks display. 17, 18, 19, between the hours of 6 The scouts took great pride in Nicola D’Amico. 2nd row (kneeling):  Philip Kazantsev, Evan Osworth, Tommy and 8 pm. completing a team extreme ob- Capozzi, Aidan Haddad, Dylan Nyakanga,  Kristofer Litwinko, Jackson Parisi, stacle course and enjoyed the scout Joseph Keck, Brendan Kempe, Lukas Litwinko, Brian Linck. Back row (left of spirit and camaraderie of the event. Troop 90 meets on Thursday flag):  Vic Haddad, Stephanie Keck, Dan Osworth, Josh McDonald, Scott Belt, evenings from 7:30 - 9pm at the Andy D’Amico, Bill Lawson. Back row (right of flag): Brian Armstrong, Will Lawson, Walter Nyakanga, Chris McArthur, Brad Hieber, Mark Litwinko, Alex Midland School, Branchburg. -- submitted by Bill Lawson, assistant scoutmaster.

Niewaidomski (with trophy), Scoutmaster Dan McDonald.



41 Mountain Avenue • Somerville • NJ • 08876 908-725-6516 • Daniel Carey, Sales Associate Vanessa Carey, Sales Associate “Carey Real Estate Team”

Sunday, January 26, 2020: 10am - 12pm Tuesday, January 28, 2020: 9am - 11am

Serving Branchburg Families Since 1996

Rooted in Catholic values, Immaculate Conception School integrates academic excellence with the spiritual and moral formation of each of its students. Staffed by dedicated teachers, we at ICS welcome you and your children to learn more about our school.


Cleanings, Whitening, and Fillings, to Full Mouth Rehabilitations Thank you for voting us Top Dentists in NJ Monthly Magazine

Dr. Darren Brenner


Direct: 908-528-3242 (Vanessa) Direct: 908-612-7216 (Daniel) Office: 908-782-0100

Gentle Dental of Branchburg

Dr. Christopher Fears

Neshanic Fire to Help Santa Again This Year

In network with MetLife PPO, Delta Premier, Cigna PPO, Guardian PPO, Aetna PPO, Dentimax PPO, & Others

3461 Route 22, Branchburg, New Jersey 08876  (908) 203-1998

COME SEE THE ICS DIFFERENCE Pre-Kindergarten through Grade 8 Half Day & Full Day Pre-Kindergarten Full Day Kindergarten Aftercare until 6:00pm

Please call to schedule a personal tour of our campus and see for yourself what happens when faith meets academic excellence.

The Branchburg News • December 2019

Thirty-six scouts and 10 adult leaders from Branchburg Troop 90 recently attended the Jersey Jam, a weekend Scouting jamboree and campout hosted by Patriots’ Path Council, Oct. 4-6. Over 2,500 participants from the area arrived Friday night to set up camp, making this the largest gathering of scouts in the Northeast in 2019.  The jamboree activities were sited at The Fields of Waterloo, Mount Allamuchy Scout Reservation and historic Waterloo Village, and included attractions such as a wood and rope bridge, helicopter landings and tours, ATV riding, shooting sports, mountain biking, and much more. Special tent activities were provided by vendors and the Jersey Jam staff and included Indian lore displays, knife making, glass blowing, STEM demonstrations.  The New Jersey State Police, New Jersey Division of Forestry, and Picatinny Arsenal staff exhibited the latest military, police, fire and emergency management vehicles, demonstrating new technologies for the scouts.  The evening entertainment included scout contests, a concert, and ended with a fabulous

Santa Claus Agrees to Come Back This Year for the Rotary Club’s Super Fun Fly-in The Rotary Club of Branchburg is hosting another Santa Fly-In at Central Jersey Regional Airport in Hillsborough this year on Sunday, Dec.8. Santa will be arriving at noon in his personal plane and will spend time at the airport’s large, heated hangar, distributing gifts to children attending the event. As in the past, parents will be permitted to take photos of their children with Santa as they receive their gift. There will be hotdogs, cookies and hot chocolate available while the children wait. To register for the event, parents must bring a gift-wrapped present for their child to TriState Aviation Flight School at the Airport located at 1034 Millstone River Road in Hillsborough. It’s best to enter via the Pizza n Pasta parking lot to access the school. Presents will be distributed in the order they are received and the club will stop accepting presents on Friday, Dec. 6. Parents are encouraged to provide some information about their child when they bring their child’s gift as Santa delivers a hand-written letter for every child attending the event. It’s a great opportunity for parents to recognize good behavior or even help some of the younger kids through a difficult time. Cost per child is $20 which must be paid when their gift is brought to the flight school. If more information is needed, please call 908-576-4333 and ask for Jodi.

This was the scene in the hangar for a previous fly-in. As the scene suggests, it’s a blast.



3322 Route 22 West Branchburg

Christian Based Programs Little Lambs

IntroductIon to Preschool Ages 2 1/2 - 3 1/2 yrs old • Adult stays with child classes available thursdays from 9:00-10 :00am & 10:30-11:30am

2,3 & 5 Day Programs offered for children ages 2 1/2 to 6 yrs old

Call today for details!

908-725-2326 • • 203 Route 28, Bridgewater, NJ 08807 3.5” x 2.5” | Maximum Font Size: 30 pt

OFFICE & MEDICAL SPACE FOR LEASE • Turn-key medical & professional office suites available • Small offices available that are perfect for start-ups! • Private entrance, bathroom, kitchenette & separate utilities for each suite


14’ 5” CONSULT 9’ 9”




What's important to you? Let's talk. Richard J Albanese

• Abundant parking (552 spaces) • On-site storage bins available • On-site Day Care


Financial Advisor

1154, 1381, 1927 up to 2495 sf (+/-)


1018 U S Highway 202 S Suite 1 Branchburg, NJ 08876 908-255-4646

23’ 9”



The Branchburg News • December 2019



Building 10 Suite 1001:


8’ 6”


14’ 1”

14’ 2” 10’

15’ 2”

*Suite is unfurnished • 908.874.8686 IMMEDIATE OCCUPANCY | BROKERS PROTECTED Member SIPC


2495 sf (+/-)


9’ 6” LOUNGE

Raider Realty is a licensed real estate broker. No warranty or representation, express or implied, is made to the accuracy of the information contained herein & same is submitted subject to errors, omissions, change of price, rental or other conditions, withdrawal without notice & to any special listing conditions, imposed by our principals & clients.



Municipal Building News | in print and online at From the Township Clerk’s Office: ‘Our Work is Your Play’ We are excited to offer residents new recreational opportunities and bring back everyone’s favorites. For details & information go to: click on “Township Recreation”, to sign up for programs click on the “Register Now” button.

Our Let’s Volunteer Group was busy last month making sandwiches for S.H.I.P. The group made 85 bag lunches which were delivered to S.H.I.P. the following day. Thank you kids, job well done! ~ December Events ~

TICKETS are SOLD OUT! Buses will leave the White Oak Park parking lot, adjacent to BCMS, promptly at 1:00pm on Mon., December 10th, for a 5pm show. The buses leave NYC immediately following the show. Tickets will be distributed once on the buses.

Phone Calls from SANTA Jolly ol’ Saint Nicholas has contacted Recreation to let us know he will be calling good little boys and girls in Branchburg on Monday, December 16th. Forms are available on the Township website/Recreation or from the Rec Department.

Join us for Thurs. Dec 12th, 6:30pm @ White Oak Park. SHS Chamber Choir will lead us in song! Refreshments served. This is a FREE event. WINTER PROGRAM Registration begins 12/16/2019. Wishing you and yours a joyful holiday season! Follow Branchburg Recreation on Facebook at:

Township Committee The 2019 General Election for the Township Committee resulted in the re-election of Committeeman Thomas Young and Committeeman Bob Petrelli for three year terms each, effective January 1, 2020. Community Garden Plot Registration The Township offers approximately 125 community garden plots at the John Sanford Farmland Preserve (River Lea Farm) located at 2088 South Branch Road. Registration will begin in January and is offered to current gardeners first and then to new gardeners, on a first come basis. Plots are 10 x 10 for $30.00 and 10 x 24 for $50.00; a $10.00 discount is offered for seniors age 62 and older. You can designate your gardening method as organic or non-organic. Applications are available in the Township Clerk’s office after January 1, 2020. Park and Ride Commuter Lot and Registration A commuter parking lot is available on Route 202 North passed River Road for bus service on the Trans-Bridge Line. Parking is by permit only, on weekdays Monday through Friday, and available to the general public free of charge on Saturday, Sundays and legal holidays; parking between the hours of 12:00 a.m. and 4:30 a.m. is prohibited.

BRANCHBURG TOWNSHIP LEAF PICK-UP SCHEDULE IS SUBJECT TO CHANGE DUE TO INCLEMENT WEATHER  Pickup will begin approximately October 14th until December 6th  Minimum two (2) PICKUPS in your area

Rake leaves to the curb area

DO NOT rake them into the road, drainage ditch or within 10’ of a catch basin.

Leaves can be taken to the Dumpster Facility by residents on normal days of operation: Every Friday – 12 to 3:00pm st

1 Saturday of the month - 9a - 3:00pm As an alternative solution to disposing of your yard waste please consider composting or mulching.

Parking permits are sold on a daily or annual basis. Annual permits are available in the Township Clerk’s office at $175.00 for Branchburg residents and $250.00 for nonresidents. Daily permits are available for $5.00 in the Township Clerk’s office during regular business hours or for $7.00 at the Bagel Garden on Route 202. Bus tickets can be purchased at the Bagel Garden. For additional information, please contact the Township Clerk’s office. The Zoning Office is reminding residents of the Revised General Ordinance 14-4.1 Removal of Snow or Ice: Required Time. The subsection reads, in part: Please remember to shovel all ice and snow from your sidewalks within 12 hours of daylight, unless the Mayor states otherwise. Property owners face a legal obligation to keep the sidewalk clean, safe and ice free. Failure to do so could result in a fine from the Zoning Office as well as a potential lawsuit from any persons injured on your property. Subsection 14.4-4 Casting of Snow or Ice reads as follows: No person, firm or corporation, the owner, tenant or occupant of any premises abutting on any street, or any other persons shall throw, plow, place or deposit snow or ice into or upon the sidewalks or the pave portion of any street of the Township, it being the intent and purpose of this provision to prohibit all persons from throwing, casting, placing or depositing snow and ice which accumulates on private property upon the sidewalks or streets for the township. **Happy Shoveling**

The Branchburg Health Department will hold a Free Rabies Clinic on Saturday, January 18, 2020 from 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM at the Branchburg Annex Building, 34 Kenbury Road. Please leash all dogs and confine cats in a carrier. You do not need to live in Branchburg to attend. For more information, call the Branchburg Health Department at 908-526-1300 ext. 183.

The Branchburg News • December 2019


The Branchburg News • December 2019


Five Scouts Earn Eagle Awards Five Scouts from Boy Scout Troop 185 recently earned their Eagle Scout awards. Eagle Scout is the highest honor in Scouting, awarded to only a small fraction of members. One significant requirement for the Eagle Scout rank is to plan and complete a service project that benefits the community. Robby Kramer is a 2019 graduate of Somerset County Vo-Tech and is a freshman at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. For his Eagle project, Robby constructed a bee habitat on a farm that provides vocational opportunities to disabled adults.  Matt Richardson is a 2019 graduate of Somerville High School and is a freshman at the University of Delaware. His project involved improving a storage area at the North Branch Reformed Church and adding industrial shelving.  Nick Merola is a 2019 graduate of Somerville High School

and now owns his own business. Nick renovated and landscaped the courtyard at Somerville High School and constructed new tables for students to use. Luke Bouziotis is a freshman at Somerville High School. He built and developed a sensory activity center at Gigi’s Playhouse, which provides services to disabled youth. Brody Bouziotis is a freshman at Somerville High School. He built a community library in Roseland, NJ, to help bring the community closer together. Troop 185 congratulates these scouts on their achievements. For more information on Troop 185, contact Eileen Bufe at eabufe@ -- submitted by Jason Lauducci, Troop 185 Scribe

Nick Merola, Matt Richardson, Eagle Scouts

Robby Kramer, Eagle Scout

December Events at BSC

BRANCHBURG SPORTS COMPLEX 47 Readington Road, Branchburg, NJ 08876

Sports ★ Camps ★ Laser Tag ★ Parties ★ Arcade



Family Holiday Party

December 22nd 9:00am to 11:00am

❆ ❆

(Full or Half Day)

Our exclusive Confident Retirement® approach addresses the four key needs of financial planning, helping you feel confident about your long-term financial future, as well as your wants and needs of today. It’s what financial balance is all about.

Covering essentials – Essentials are the necessities—the monthly expenses that keep your life running. Make the most of your income and build a reserve to cover those expenses.

Preparing for the unexpected – The unexpected are events that could derail your plans. Protect yourself from the certainty of uncertainty. Leaving a legacy – Legacy is about the impact you’ll make on the people, charities and causes that are important to you. Plan now to maximize your giving and make your wishes known.

STEPHEN R. WALKER JR, CFP®, ChFC®, CLU® Private Wealth Advisor

Safe Sitter December 30th


Balance: it’s all part of the plan.

Ensuring lifestyle – Lifestyle is about the things that you want to do and how you want to live, today and in the future. Build a savings and investment plan for what’s important.

Schools Out! Camp December 23rd, 26th, 27th & 30th

9:30am to 3:00pm

Luke Bouziotis, Brody Bouziotis, Eagle Scouts


For more information visit our website at or contact us at 908.203.1600

Walkers & Associates A private wealth advisory practice of Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc. The Mansions 24 Mine St, Ste 201 Flemington, NJ 08822-6500 908.782.7673 CA Insurance: #0D37851

The Compass is a trademark of Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc. Ameriprise Financial Services, Inc., Member FINRA and SIPC. © 2015 Ameriprise Financial, Inc. All rights reserved. (3/15)


Branchburg Newsmakers

Paula & John Paula Trinchera and John Steyh were married on Sept 27, 2019 at Normandy Farm in Blue Bell, PA. Paula is the daughter of Lynn Trinchera of Branchburg and David Trinchera of Lake Ariel, PA. John is the son of Adolf & Janet Steyh of Cranberry Lake, NJ. Paula graduated from Somerville High School in 2009 and attended Susquehanna University where she met John. She earned a Business/ Finance degree and works in NYC as a Property Underwriter with Chubb Insurance. John has a degree in Economics and is employed with PVH Corp. in Bridgewater, NJ as a Financial Manager. Paula & John reside in Jersey City.

Happy Holidays From Our Homes to Yours!

Lisa Middleton Kimberley Dabrowski Realtors, SFR, ABR, ASP 908-872-4027 (Lisa) 908-309-1849 (Kim)



37 Birchwood, Bedminster

9 Wellington, Clinton Township



902 Breckenridge, Branchburg

New Bridgewater Listing

The Branchburg News • December 2019

Nihdi Banker Nidhi Banker of Branchburg, a student at Somerset County Vocational & Technical High School, was named a Commended Student in the 2020 National Merit Scholarship Program.”Commended Students throughout the nation are being recognized for their exceptional academic promise,” commented a spokesperson for the National Merit Scholarship Corporation, which conducts the program.

Patrick & Megan Peter and Cathy Zehr of Branchburg announce the engagement of their daughter Megan Moore to Patrick Clewell, son of Tara Clewell and the late Richard Clewell of Plainsboro, NJ. Megan is a 2012 graduate of Somerville High School and a 2016 graduate of Rider University. She is employed by PeproTech, Inc. as a Marketing Associate. Megan is the granddaughter of Stan and Loraine Richmond of Branchburg. Patrick is a 2010 graduate of West Windsor-Plainsboro North High School and a 2014 graduate of Rutgers University. He is employed at Merrill Lynch as a New Accounts Supervisor. A fall 2020 wedding is planned.

Sophia Schlauch Student of the Month, Sophia Schlauch, a student at Branchburg Central Middle School, won the Rotary Club of Branchburg Essay Contest for October. The presenMina Batra tation reflected the student’s goals Student of the Month, Mina Bafor the future and the steps neces- tra, a student at Branchburg Censary to achieve their goals. Sophia tral Middle School, won the Rotary is planning on studying to become Club of Branchburg Essay Contest a photographer. She was awarded for November.  The presentation a Rotary certificate, a gift cer- reflected the student’s goals for the future and the steps necessary to tificate  and a special Rotary coin achieve their goals.  Mina is planthat reminds Rotarians to live their ning on studying to become a lawlives by the Rotary 4-Way Test: yer, a profession she will share with “Of the things we think, say and both her parents.She was awarded do:  Is it the truth?  Is it fair to all a Rotary certificate, a gift certificoncerned?  Will it build goodwill cate and a special Rotary coin that and better friendships? Will it be reminds Rotarians to live their lives by the Rotary 4-Way Test beneficial to all concerned?

Proudly serving all of Somerset and Hunterdon Counties as well as southern Morris County

• Coldwell Banker Top 50 Small Teams 2018 • NJ Realtors Circle of Excellence 2017-2018 (Lisa) • NJAR Multi-Million Dollar Sales Club 2007-2018 • Accredited Staging Professionals • Zillow 5 Star Agents



302 Route 202/206, PO Box 446, Bedminster, NJ 07921 908-658-9000

1406 Boxwood, Branchburg

3339 Lukes Pond, Branchburg


RVCC Chorale to Present Annual Holiday Concert The RVCC Chorale will perform its annual holiday concert on Saturday, Dec. 7 at 8 pm in the Welpe Theatre at Raritan Valley Community College’s Branchburg campus. The program will feature Johann Sebastian Bach’s cantata, Wachet Auf, also known as “Sleepers Awake,” as well as Christmas music from the Middle Ages and Renaissance. The program also will include an audience singalong of traditional carols. Directed by Dr. John Sichel, RVCC Assistant Professor of Music, the RVCC Chorale is

composed of students, former students and members of the community. The holiday concert’s performers include Kayla Rodriguez, soprano; Joy Auerbach, Ruth Dilley, Angelique Dunlap, Holly Ellerbush, Carissa Culino, Jennifer Kapoian and Jane Sausanavage, altos; and Brian Hewitt, Joe Maselli and Tyler McManus, men’s voices. Michael Nuzzo is the Chorale’s accompanist. For this concert, the Chorale will be assisted by a chorus of elementary and middle-school students from Clinton, Franklin Township and Union Township

public schools. Also assisting on the program are sopranos Alex Borden and Martha Desmond, bass Gregory Hartline, flutists Eugenia Cline and Clarissa Nolde, and the Littmann String Quartet. General admission tickets cost $12 per person, $8 for students and seniors. Tickets may be purchased at the door on the night of the concert or in advance from the Theatre Box Office, 908-725-3420. The Box Office is open Monday through Friday, from 11 am to 4 pm.

Learning About Volunteering -- On Oct. 18, Cub Scout Pack

315 held its monthly pack meeting at the former Old York School building. Members of the Branchburg Police Department, Neshanic Volunteer Fire Company and the Branchburg Rescue Squad came to talk about community service and volunteering. As part of the meeting the scouts were able to explore the emergency vehicles. -- submitted by Jennifer Aiello

COUNTRYSIDE FUNERAL HOME ~ Let the Zalewski Family of Branchburg serve you in your time of need ~

908-782-2121 • Serving all Faiths & Denominations • Pre-Planning & Pre-Funding • Cremation Services • Out of State & Worldwide Services • Honoring Pre-Arrangements made Elsewhere

724 Route 202 North PO Box 431 Three Bridges, NJ 08887 Serving: FLEMINGTON, BRANCHBURG, HILLSBOROUGH & READINGTON TOWNSHIP & Surrounding Areas

Atlantic NeuroSurgical Specialists and Altair Health, specialists in comprehensive spine care, are now seeing patients in Bridgewater.

John R. Zalewski, Owner/Manager

Sharon Ann Zalewski, Director

John R. Zalewski, Jr., Director

George Rocco Seminara. Jr., Director

NJ Lie.# 2820 NJ Lie.# 4703

NJ Lie. # 4003 NJ Lie.# 4927

photo by Carol H. Waechter

The Branchburg News • December 2019


How can we help you?

make hay Guiding Patients. Delivering Outcomes. Bridgewater | Morristown | Jefferson Neptune | Pompton Plains | Summit 833.4ALTAIR (833.425.8247)

Advertise Your Business in The Branchburg News And The Readington News


Whispering Shadows Tell their Secret life. The birth of light marked a new year, a time to plan and celebrate future success. I take comfort in celebrating the shortest day and birth of light with a campfire, lighting a cattail and roasting a piece of venison on the glowing coals. This day is my paleo New Year celebration, identifying more with primitive ancestors than ethnic DNA. January first is of no consequence. To hunt with a traditional bow and arrow and bring a deer to ground to share with the clan is the ultimate act of caring and community. It becomes a communion of spirit and flesh where the animal is assimilated, a sign of respect for its sacrifice. It also transcends time and allows me to share in the emotions felt by my ancestors who looked to the sky and listened to the whispering shadows for guid- A Different Perspective -- A female cardinal, upside down on a branch, perfectly reflects the new year of light ushered in by the winter solstice. It is a ance and survival. Welcome to winter and new chance to use the light to see your world from a different perspective and dislife. Sophisticated calculation cover all the treasures hidden by unconscious routine and preconception.  The of planetary movements indi- scene is a legacy of the ancient Roman winter celebration of Saturnalia where cates that this year winter will social order was turned upside down. Slaves would become masters, peasants arrive December twenty-first were in command of the city and merriment and wild celebration ruled the day. at 11:19 am. Like magic, the If nothing else, give a glance descent into darkness instantly gives way to the ascent into up at the stars on the twentyfirst. Know the wonder your Contact light. ancestors felt when they looked to the heavens in awe, See more photos and articles at their imagination encouraged by the stars and planets moving across the night sky.

Home for the Holidays




The Branchburg News • December 2019

The autumn light gradually dims, as it follows its well-worn path deeper into December. Like a long circular tunnel with a vanishing point, the swirling colors fade away until they disappear, engulfed by dark shadows on the threshold of winter. From this darkness, caused by the celestial despair of the planets, new light instantly begins to grow while shadows hidden on the far side of light begin to withdraw. The apparent low path of the sun across the sky in winter produces the longest shadows. Shadows, which when measured at the height of the day, over time reflect the ebb and flow of the seasons. It is as if the shadows whispered their secret to early sky gazers, bestowing upon them, the gift of predicting the future. When the position of stars and planets were noted in association with the occurrence of the longest and shortest shadows, a living calendar

was discovered. Sunrise and sunset defined a day, full moon a month and the longest shadow to the longest shadow was a year. The concept of time was now measurable and the occurrence of future events predictable; predictability being an innate need and prerequisite to human survival. As the primitive calendar became more refined, certain times were marked for celebration. Surely, the longest and shortest days were noted and given special attention. Humans will bridge gaps in knowledge with mythology and paleo societies revolved around myths used to explain natural phenomena. In the northern latitudes, winter was a critical time of survival. During midwinter the sun appeared to stand still. If you look at a perpetual calendar of sunrise and sunset, the change in day length is minimal during that period. Many were the rites and ceremonies during that period of darkness. Some gave rise to modern celebration when religious holidays overlaid pagan rituals. Druids burned a yule log to encourage the return of light. Holly, which was evergreen, was given as a sign of

The Branchburg News • December 2019


What Linus Knew about Christmas— “And there were

in the same country shepherds, abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them! And they were sore afraid... And the angel said unto them, ‘Fear not! For, behold, I bring you tidings of great joy, which shall be to all my people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ, the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you: Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.’ And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the Heavenly Host praising God, and saying ‘Glory to God in the Highest, and on Earth peace, and good will toward men.’ “That’s what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown.” --Based on Luke 2:814, and used in the television special “A Charlie Brown Christmas,” first aired in 1965. --Photo courtesy of Roger and Leigh Johnson

Boy Scouts Conduct Flag Ceremony -- On the night of Nov.10, scouts and adults from

Troops 185 and 90, as well as cub scouts, came together to recognize and respect currently serving military and veterans living and deceased, and to retire worn American flags. Scouts described what each part of the flag represented, as the stars and stripes of one flag were cut apart and placed onto a fire. Afterward, those who wanted to retire a used flag by placing it onto the fire could do so. Many scouts and adults, as well as two veterans, took turns retiring flags, while being respectful to the flag and its meaning. The ceremony was followed by a moment of silence to remember those who have given their lives. The night wrapped up as Scouts and adults were invited for refreshments, including cookies and hot cocoa. Seen above, veterans Don Keck and Kevin Dick retire a flag over the fire as young scouts look on. -- submitted by Jason Lauducci

May your style be merry and bright.

’Tis the season to show off your gorgeous side. Stop in for a manicure, pedicure, or wax today and be ready for the holidays ahead. Book online with the TRU salon + spa app! Shoppes@Branchburg 908 + 218 + 9TRU 1190 Route 28 Branchburg, NJ 08876

The Corner Village at Warren 908 + 753 + 9TRU 9 Mount Bethel Road Warren, NJ 07059

hair · makeup · spa treatments & packages · waxing · nails · boutique · men’s services



(908) 735-6126 NJ LIC# 7071

The Hunterdon Medical Center Auxiliary is hosting the annual Lights of Love Tree Lighting Ceremony on Wednesday, Dec. 4, from 4:15 to 5:15 p.m. at Hunterdon Medical Center, 2100 Westcott Dr., Flemington. The event gathers family and friends and brightens the holiday sky with lights, music and love. Returning this year to entertain is the Star Maker School and Crossroads. A holiday cookie sale will be held during the event to benefit Briteside Adult Day Center. The auxiliary will sell hand-painted ornaments, created by The Brushing Violets. For 32 years, in early December, Hunterdon Medical Center has been lighting the campus with thousands of shining white and blue lights. These lights represent gifts received from donors all over the country to honor or memorialize people who have touched

their lives in a special way. If you would like to dedicate your own light and have a “light of love” placed on the tree, call the Hunterdon Healthcare Foundation at 908-788-6141 or visit online at lightsoflovenj. org. Tree lights available are Individual lights - $20, Starlight $100, Candlelight $250, Shooting Star $500 and Circle of Love $1,000. The Lights of Love lead sponsor is Wright & Ford Family Funeral Home. For more information and to RSVP to attend the ceremony, contact the foundation office at 908-788-6141 or email

Eileen Bufe, Branchburg Scouting for Food Coordinator, sent the group photo and the following write-up in apprecation of the contributions to the 2019 Scouting for Food project. Wrote Eileen, “The Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts of the Branchburg/ Raritan area spent several hours on Nov. 2 collecting bags of food & winter items throughout Branchburg and part of Raritan. The collected items were then sorted, packed into boxes and loaded onto a Fed Ex truck for transport to the Food Bank Network of Somerset County. “A huge thank you goes to our residents who supported this project with their donations and the employees of Fed Ex of Branchburg who donated items as well. Your generosity helps the Food Bank Network of Somerset County provide for those in need. The Food Bank is always excited to see us arrive with a Fed Ex truck (donated by Fed Ex of Branchburg) loaded with donations which we then unload.

Seen in the photo above at the Food Bank Network building are Troop 185 collection participants: Debasis Ghosh, Brett Weinblatt, Jacob Cafferata, Jonathon Weinblatt, Jacob Weinblatt, Ernie Tistan, Dawn Weinblatt, Angela Cafferata, Tom Mitchell (Raritan Valley District Service Chair), Dana Lauducci, Marie Scannell (Food Bank Executive Director), Eric Dabulis, Amber Koskulitz, Jason Lauducci, Eileen Bufe.

“Please continue to support the throughout the year. They are loFood Bank Network of Somer- cated at 9E Easy Street, off Chimset County with your donations ney Rock Rd, Bridgewater.”

Offering quality year round programs for infants, toddlers, preschool, pre-kindergarten, kindergarten and afterschool enrichment. Outstanding curriculum Caring and accomplished teachers Family-friendly environment


Celebrate the season!

Join us for an evening of family fun! Friday, December 13th from 6:30 – 8pm • Make a craft and play some games • Take a Photo with Santa Claus • Visit Our Ginger Bread Display • Join our sing-a-long • Cookie Exchange Please let us know if you’ll be joining us.

Denise Favor Bayles, MA, CCC-SLP Speech-Language Pathologist ASHA Certified, NJ Licensed NJ Lic. # 41YS00282300

Articulation, Language, Oral Motor, Feeding, Swallowing Evaluations & Therapy


Co-Medical Director RWJ BarnabasSomerset Center for Wound Healing Chief of Podiatry RWJ Barnabas-Somerset


The Branchburg News • December 2019

Lights of Love Dec. 4 at Hunterdon Medical Center

Huge Thank You to Scouting for Food Contributors


Denise has been honored by New Jersey Family readers as a Favorite Kids’ Doc™ since 2010.

191 Church Road • Bridgewater, NJ 08807 • 908-578-0825 •

Office: (908) 782-6850

The Branchburg News • December 2019


Girl Scouts Spend Night in a Lighthouse Girl Scouts of Service Unit 73 did a “Sleeper Keeper” at the Absecon At right and below, two views show the lighthouse keeper’s Lighthouse on Nov. 16. They learned house with the Absecon Lightthe history of the Absecon lighthouse house behind it, and a closer and also two others -- Barnegat and view of the scouts and leadCape May. Together, these three are ers on the steps. From top left are Mary Anne Bolink, Magknown as the “ABC Lighthouses.” gie Gabanyi, Dina StracuzziThe scouts also learned about the Farlow (Leaders). The six life of a lighthouse keeper and why this scouts are Amy Bolink, Regan lighthouse is no longer in use.(Hint: it Ost, Ashley Bolink, Anindita involves competition with bright lights Ghosh, Monica Gabanyi, Harlee Stracuzzi. on tall buildings on the shore, and because ship crews now use advanced technology to better pinpoint their positioning at sea.) After a lengthy lesson, the girls watched a short video on the lenses. They then climbed all 228 stairs to the top of the lighthouse, filling out a page with questions at each stop, then they faced the bitter cold and high winds to check out the awesome scenery around them. Next came the climb down, snacks, a ghost story and some shut-eye. They did an additional climb to check the scenery during the day. The girls not only earned a fun patch from the lighthouse, they also earned an official LightHouse badge another Council has a card stating they climbed the tallest lighthouse in New Jersey. --Submitted by Dina Stracuzzi-Farlow, Branchburg Service Unit Manager

Branchburg PTO Holiday Happiness is Collecting Gifts from Dec. 2 to 13 The PTO Holiday Happiness program provides new unwrapped gifts for the less fortunate members of the local community. The success of this program completely depends upon the generosity of the people of Branchburg, due to your past kindness, Holiday Happiness has been assisting the community for more than 40 years. As this amazing program has grown over the years, so has the number of families with small children. The PTO has changed the program to solely benefit the children of our community from Pre-K through 8th grade. The donated items being collected will need to be new, unwrapped gifts for both boys and girls. The children’s ages range from 4 to 14. Again this year we have great interest in small denomination gift cards donations (i.e. $25, $20 & $10 to Movies, i-tunes, Game Stop, Amazon, Claire’s). New for this year we have a wish list on Amazon. The link for gift ideas is https://www. J4MSQ2NK XBSY?ref_=wl_

share and they can be purchased and shipped directly to the sorting location. This list will be updated based on the needs and the wants of the children. Contact Heidi Davis at or Jill Jaecks at for specific items requested (sizes of clothing, coats, shoes, slippers, toys.) Donated gifts are being collected at all Branchburg schools and the Municipal Building Dec. 2 – 14. There will be a large box in the foyer or office at each location. Please do not leave gift cards at the drop-off locations; instead contact Heidi at 908-872-1533 and she will schedule a pick/drop off. We need your help to continue this program and thank you in advance for your continued support. --submitted by the Branchburg PTO

23 Blossom Hill Road Lebanon, NJ 08833 Call us at (908) 236-4120 or visit us at Oncology Returns to Crown Vet

Please join us in welcoming Gabrielle Angelo, DVM, DACVIM (Oncology) who will be providing Oncology Services at Crown Veterinary Specialists

We Offer Specialty Services, Including: Surgery • Emergency/Critical Care Anesthesia, Pain Management/Acupuncture Dermatology • Ophthalmology Cardiology • Oncology


The Raritan Valley Community College Planetarium in Branchburg will present a number of holiday laser concerts and star shows in December. The following shows will be offered: Perfect Little Planet, Saturday, December 7, 3 p.m. A family from another star system is seeking the perfect vacation spot. Fly over the surface of Pluto, our best known dwarf planet; sail through the rings of Saturn; feel Jupiter’s lightning storms; and walk on the surface of Mars. Which vacation destination will the family choose? (Recommended for ages 6-12) Kids Jam laser concert, Saturday, December 7, 4 p.m. Enjoy an eclectic mix of music to entertain kids and kids at heart while lasers dance on the Planetarium dome overhead. Songs include “Bright” by Echosmith, “YMCA” by The Village People, “Mia” by Bad Bunny, and “Waka Waka” by Shakira. (Recommended for ages 6-12) Astronomy Tonight, Saturday, December 7, 7 p.m. Using the Planetarium’s DigitalSky digital theater, experience a guided tour of the night sky. Learn about some of the popular constellations visible from sunset to sunrise, as well as the stories behind them. Hear about how and where in the sky to find the brightest planets. Weather permitting, the 3M Observatory will be open after the show. (Recommended for ages 8-adult)

Winter Wonder Lights, Saturdays, December 14 & 21, at 4 p.m. and 8 p.m. Enjoy a laser concert featuring such holiday hits as “Wizards in Winter,” “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree,” and “Dominic the Donkey.” (Recommended for ages 6-adult) Mystery at the North Pole, SatLaser Beatles, Saturday, De- urdays, December 14 & 21, 7 p.m. cember 7, 8 p.m. Listen to The Fab Four’s hits from Poor Santa is too ill to deliver the group’s long career, including presents this year. Who could “Twist and Shout,” “Revolution,” have done this? Who would want and “Get Back,” while lasers ani- to sabotage Christmas? Was it an mate the songs on the dome over- elf? A reindeer? The audience will need to look at the suspects head. and figure out who is guilty of The Alien Who Stole Christ- hurting Santa. (Recommended for mas, Saturdays, December 14 & ages 6-adult) 21, 3 p.m. Discover the stars visible in the Planetarium tickets cost $10 for winter sky. Then follow Santa on one show, $18 for two shows on a trip through the solar system as the same day. For reservations and he’s kidnapped by a friendly alien. information, call 908-231-8805. The kids on the other planets also For additional information, visit need presents! (Recommended for ages 6-10)

Interactive parent/child music classes for infants through preschoolers.

Classes in Branchburg & Bridgewater



Dean of Chess Academy

Suite 1501

Bateman Legislation Requiring Schools to Create Seizure Action Plans Progresses in Senate A bill sponsored by Senator Kip Bateman that would let a parent of a child with epilepsy request seizure disorder training for school personnel has passed the Senate Health Committee. The legislation, dubbed “Paul’s Law,” is dedicated to Paul St. Pierre, an eighth grader from New Jersey who was diagnosed with epilepsy in February. He is a passionate advocate  for the training of school professionals to promote seizure-safe schools. “Seizures can occur anytime, anywhere, and often without warning,” said Bateman (R-16). “If you’re the parent of a child with epilepsy, you want to be assured that their teachers, nurses, and school bus drivers are properly trained and can care for your child until advanced medical help arrives. Creating an individual seizure action plan for students with epilepsy will help schools across New Jersey become ‘seizure smart’ and save lives.” The legislation,  S-4141, sponsored by Bateman and Senator

James Beach, would ensure that a school nurse develops an “individualized health care plan” and an “emergency health care plan” for a student with a seizure disorder at a parent’s request. Under the bill, the school nurse would be responsible for establishing seizure disorder care at the school and ensuring that all teachers, faculty, and staff are trained to care for students with seizure disorders. The legislation also requires that the school bus driver of a child with epilepsy be trained in seizure disorder first aid and be provided with emergency contact information. “There are currently 12,000 students throughout the Garden State with a seizure disorder,” added Bateman. “Imagine if all of their teachers and school faculty were trained in seizure first aid. I commend Paul for his advocacy and will continue to work on a bipartisan basis with Senator Beach to ensure that this bill is signed into law.”

to my Clients that Became Friends, Neighbors, Future Clients, and Branchburg Residents, I wish you all a Happy Holiday Season and a Healthy Prosperous New Year. MARILYN RUTISHAUSER

Chess classes for all levels

Led by International

Master of Chess Dean Ippolito

USCF rated Tournaments

Chess League

Gr. K-12

(908) 595 0066

Branchburg Commons, NJ, 08876

Summer Camp

Broker/Sales Associate Sales Representative 908-930-6731 5 Star Zillow Agent Weichert President Club Weichert Ambassador Club NJ Circle of Excellence NJ Circle of Excellence Distinguished Sales Award

3290 Route 22 West, Branchburg 908-526-5444

The Branchburg News • December 2019

Planetarium to Present Holiday and Star Shows, Laser Concerts in December

The Branchburg News • December 2019


DanceWorks at RVCC to Feature Student, Faculty Performances Raritan Valley Community College’s (RVCC) Arts & Design department will present DanceWorks, an evening of student and faculty dance, Thursday and Friday, December 5 and 6, at 8 p.m. The event will be held in the Edward Nash Theatre at the College’s Branchburg campus. The concert is being produced by Loretta Fois, Director of RVCC’s dance program. Seven student pieces were chosen for the concert. In addition to the student works, guest artist Dr. Bill Bauer will present a quintet featuring RVCC dancers that premiered in summer 2019. The piece, Games People Play, is a study in Plastique animée. Plastique is a term used by musician Émile Jaques-Dalcroze to represent a visceral method of music analysis; in a sense it is the interpretation of music in a physical performance. Executive Director of the Dalcroze Society of America, Bauer teaches music at the College of Staten Island/CUNY, where he serves as Coordi-

nator of Musical Performance and the Dalcroze Atelier. Bauer received his Ph.D. in Composition and M. Phil. from the CUNY Graduate Center and his MA in Composition from Columbia University. He earned his Dalcroze License and Certificate in Dalcroze at Manhattan School of Music. Pieces included in DanceWorks also tour with the Raritan Valley Dance Ensemble (RVDE), under the direction of Loretta Fois. RVDE performs at local schools, senior centers and community groups each semester, as well as at campus events. For information about scheduling a lecture/performance for a school, senior center, or community group, contact Fois at General admission tickets to DanceWorks cost $12 each, $8 for students and seniors. For tickets, call 908-725-3420. For additional information, call 908-2188876.

The Raritan Valley Dance Ensemble rehearses Games People Play.

Register Now for BBC Spring Baseball and Softball Registration for the 2019 spring season of the Branchburg Baseball Club (BBC) is open until Feb. 14, 2020. Boys and girls in preschool through 12th grade are eligible to play baseball. Girls in preschool through 8th grade are eligible to play softball. Preschoolers are eligible to play if they will be entering

kindergarten in the fall of 2020. For more information and to register, visit Also, the BBC is looking for additional sponsors for this season. If interested, email Rich Muratore at -- submitted by Jason Miessler

Superior Handyman Services

No matter how far the drive. You don’t need an appointment for our fast, courteous service. Come by and visit, before it’s time to take that ride.

100% of all Home Repairs Free Estimates

Call 908-966-0662

N.J. Certified • Over 35 Years of Experience Grades 7-12 • Reasonable Rates 8 Arapaho Trail, Branchburg

Drive with Confidence...

Licensed, Insured


T/A Mike's Classico

$10.00 OFF

Signature Service® Oil Change AOT12

Thank You Advertisers! Your Support Makes This Community Newspaper Possible

Most vehicles. Redeemable at the Bridgewater or Franklin locations. Cannot be combined with any other offers. Expires 12/31/19.

BRIDGEWATER 1316 Route 22 East

(908) 231-9800 Located at Morgan Lane


1503 Route 27 South

(732) 828-6116

Between Cozzens Lane and Bennetts Lane

Family Owned & Operated For Over 25 Years Hours: Monday-Friday 8am - 7pm • Saturday 8am - 5pm; Sunday 9am - 3pm Jiffy Lube, the Jiffy Lube design mark and Jiffy Lube Signature Service® are registered trademarks of Jiffy Lube International, Inc. © 2016 Jiffy Lube International, Inc.

common interests, creating friendships, and further developing their talents and leadership skills. There are opportunities to participate and collaborate in activities that focus on important issues, such as supporting women’s health, aiding children and families, preserving natural resources, promoting literacy and equality, and encouraging volunteer service. It can be fun and rewarding to help others and make a positive difference, even in small ways. Call Barbra at 908)-866-1060, the BWC’s membership chair, to learn how simple it is to join the club. More information is available at https://www. or at The Branchburg Woman’s Club, a member of the New Jersey State Federation of Women’s Clubs and the General Federation of Women’s Clubs (GFWC), has been improving people’s lives since 1960.

The Branchburg News • December 2019

By Tricia Ihde for the BWC Every December, the Branchburg Woman’s Club likes to celebrate the festive season with a casual party. As in recent years, it will be held at special location, date, and time. The fun starts at 7 pm, Wednesday, Dec. 11 at the Branchburg Rescue Squad building, 113 River Road, just off Route 202 South. Women interested in the club are welcome to attend and enjoy the refreshments. The club wishes to thank the Branchburg Rescue Squad. Information about the squad and ways to support this important community service organization are available at http:// It is easy to become a member of the Branchburg Woman’s Club. Women who reside in or near Branchburg are welcome to join. Club members may take part in meaningful projects, special events, as well as casual social gatherings. Many enjoy discovering


Branchburg Woman’s Club Party is Dec. 11

Help Others At No Extra Cost

Year-round at no extra cost to themselves, Internet shoppers can support the BWC’s philanthropic mission by shopping at popular online retailers through the online portal and choosing the BWC’s Philanthropic Fund as their cause. iGive is password-protected, free to join and use, plus there’s no obligation. Retailers give the donation through iGive, not the shopper. Shopping the iGive way typically earns the shopper a tax-deductible donation to the shopper’s chosen cause. Visit or call the club at 908866-1824 for further information.

The BWC Craft Fair at Branchburg Central Middle School on Nov. 16 was the biggest and probably the

best in the 32-year history of the event. There were over 90 displays, with new additions like a children’s pottery painting pop-up booth, a slime seller, and a henna tattoo artist. And for lunch? The meatball sandwiches were top-notch.

Your Branchburg Real Estate Expert BRANCHBURG HOMES FOR SALE

908-247-0869 LD


109 Briar Way 4BR, 4 Full/2 Half baths $705,000



6 Munsee Trail 2BR, 2 1/2 baths $339,500




24 Hardenbergh (Somerset) 2 BR, 2 1/2 baths $475,000



32 Harlan School Rd 3 BR, 2 1/2Baths $412,000



5 Windy Willow Way 4 BR, 2 1/2 baths $429,000 LE



103 Lindabury Lane (Tewksbury) 3 BR, 2 1/2 Baths $475,000

CLASSIC GROUP 3322 Route 22 West, Suite 908 Branchburg, NJ 08876

Office: 908-895-1856 Direct: 908-247-0869 Representing Branchburg buyers and sellers with excellent service, professionalism and expertise. Have you thought about buying or selling? Contact Bobbie to schedule an appointment 908-247-0869

The Branchburg News • December 2019


Clinton Township - Now interviewing for 69th season. Interested Teachers, retirees, college students, high school seniors, rising seniors may apply. Positions: Arts & Crafts, nature, life guards (will train), group counselors, division leader, P/T maintenance. Applications online @


Residential Customer

TO PLACE A CLASSIFIED AD: Type your ad exactly as you want it to appear. Ads are limited to 30 words (phone numbers count as one word). Mail your ad along with a check for $20 made payable to “The Branchburg News� to The Branchburg News, PO Box 5351, Branchburg, NJ 08876 cludes utilities, cable/wifi). No smoking or pets. If interested call Denice 908-963-8102.

TEWKSBURY, Fully furnished 1 bedroom apartment RITTER BROTHERS PAINTfor rent. $1,300 per month (in- ING, Readington, NJ. Interior

Hind & Fore Inc. Celebrating Anniversary CelebratingOur our 50th 57th Anniversary

Quality Meats & Seafood


For the Holidays!

 Meats &

. Fresh Seafood    . All Kinds of Homemade Sausages . Homemade Pasta, Pierogies . Fresh Baked Pies and Cheesecakes

. U.S.D.A. Prime Beef . Penn. Dutch Seafood Pork & Poultry . American Lamb . Game Birds . No Water or Filler Added Smoked & Honey Baked Hams

Doesn’t Your Family Deserve the BEST? Call 908-722-6393 Orders Welcome

Our Telephone Get On st! Li Email ials y Spec l k e e W

452 Hwy. 28 West, Bridgewater

(1.5 miles west of the Somerville Circle)


New Brunswick, NJ Permit No. 1757


& Exterior. Lic#13VH10329300. studio or your home. All levels Business: 908-233-8904, Home: & ages - Retirees & Senior Discount!  Call Sig (experienced & 908-534-9390. degreed)   908-231-0492. CARPENTER - Branchburg Carpenter with 35 years experience HELP WANTED – Full or Part available for all jobs around the Time Laboratory Assistant/Techhome. Quality work at a reason- nician for Environmental Testing able rate. Call Ron 908-256-9128. Laboratory located in Hillsborough, NJ. Please send resume to HELP WANTED - Server needed ECM, P.O. Box 427, Neshanic at La Strada CafÊ. Call 908-369- Station, 08853, or email to ecm1370 or come in 419 Olive St., Ne- shanic Station. Annual Holiday Pottery Sale Dec. FD MASON CONTRACTOR - 7 & 8 – Hosted by Red Barn ArOver 30 years of experience. Brick, tisans @ 1125 Hwy #28 (a/k/a block, stone, concrete. No job too Easton Turnpike) from 10 a.m. to large or small. Fully insured & 4 p.m. Contact Terry @ 908-963licensed. Free estimates. 908- 7689 or 385-5701. Lic# 13VH05475900. MUSIC LESSONS:  Guitar, Bass, Ukulele, Harmonica and/or Keyboard at my Branchburg home

Open: Tuesday - Saturday Tues. & Wed. 9-6, Thurs. 9-7, Fri. 9-6, Sat. 9-5


What They Went For Recent property sales reported in Branchburg Township: 31 Arrowhead Dr. $590K 269 Bald Eagle Dr. $559,500 301 Branch Dr. $472,500 1015 Breckenridge Dr. $220K 15 Buffalo Hollow Rd. $390K 50 Dreahook Rd. $335K 9 Fieldpointe Dr. $760K 219 Glen Crest Dr. $504,900 1968 Holland Brook Rd. W. $485K 79 Lamington Rd. $525K 624 Old York Rd. $350K 854 Parsonage Hill Rd. $865K 142 River Rd. $309K 2308 South Branch Rd. $420K 267 Summer Rd. $425K 307 Swan Ct. $520K 14 Winthrop Dr. $441K

You know Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixen and the one with the shiny nose. But what about Olive? She’s in the song, too. Olive the other reindeer (used to laugh and call him names!) How many presents can Santa fit in his empty sack? Just one. After one, his sack isn’t empty anymore. Bedminster guy tells the jeweler he wants to buy his girlfriend something with diamonds, but he can only spend about $10. Jeweler tells him to buy her a deck of playing cards. If you lift your left foot off the ground just before midnight on Dec. 31, you’ll begin the new year on the right foot. What’s the problem with jogging on New Years Eve? The ice sloshes out of your drink! What is Santa’s nationality? North Polish. Why is it so cold this time of year? Because it’s Decembrrrrrr!

Absolutely Anything Removed Disposal of Household Junk and Construction Debris Fast Service • 7 Days A Week Dumpster Rentals Backhoe Rental With Operator Tree Stump Removal Wood Chipper Service

NJREMOVAL.COM 908-526-7009 Call or text Dave Foran

Profile for Town Media

Branchburg News, December 2019  

Monthly community newspaper of Branchburg, New Jersey, published online and in printed editions

Branchburg News, December 2019  

Monthly community newspaper of Branchburg, New Jersey, published online and in printed editions

Profile for townmedia