Urban Agenda Magazine - September 2017

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September 2017

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Integrity: Trust that lasts for generations. SEP T EM B ER 2 01 7 EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Lynn Adams Smith CREATIVE DIRECTOR Jorge Naranjo ART DIRECTOR Jeffrey Edward Tryon GRAPHIC DESIGNERS Matthew DiFalco Erica M. Cardenas CONTRIBUTING EDITORS Stuart Mitchner Laurie Pellichero Anne Levin Ilene Dube Wendy Plump Taylor Smith Doug Wallack William Uhl ADVERTISING DIRECTOR Robin Broomer

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Celebrating JFK’s 100th Birthday BY DOUG WALLACK


Q&A with Heads of School 12

“Play Bal l!” (Careful ly, and Not Al l the Time) BY WENDY PLUMP




The Lewis Center for the Arts: A Place to Create and Col laborate




Fal l Festivals BY LAUR I E PELLI CHER O



In the Spirit: Craft Distil leries are B ooming in New Jersey BY LAUR I E PELLI CHER O



Elements Truffles: Where Cacao Meets Yoga BY TAYLOR SMI TH


Engineering New York BY I LENE DUBE

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Urban B ooks: Rhyme and Rhythm, Words and Wonder: Princeton’s Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith BY ST UART MI TCHNER


Chic Geek 18

Academic Athlete 20

A Wel l-Designed Life 54

Destination: Chatham & Madison BY WI LLI AM UHL



On the Cover: The New NY Bridge. Photo courtesy of the New York State Thruway Authority.


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The Kennedy Family at Hyannis Port, September 4, 1931. L-R: Robert Kennedy, John F. Kennedy, Eunice Kennedy, Jean Kennedy (on lap of) Joseph P. Kennedy Sr., Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy (behind) Patricia Kennedy, Kathleen Kennedy, Joseph P. Kennedy Jr. (behind) Rosemary Kennedy. Dog in foreground is “Buddy”. Photograph by Richard Sears in the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum, Boston.


uoted in the December 1963 Life article in which she famously coined the “Camelot” epithet for her late husband’s presidency, Jacqueline Kennedy says, “Once, the more I read of history, the more bitter I got. For a while I thought history was something that bitter old men wrote. But then I realized history made Jack what he was.” She goes on to outline a vision of a young John F. Kennedy for whom history was a great repository of heroes and role models—a catalyst for his own idealism. In retrospect, it is tempting to flip her line and say that, in fact, history made Jack what he is. That is, despite his relatively modest accomplishments during his brief tenure as president, and despite the subsequent revelations of philander ing that threatened to tarnish his legacy, history has smiled on JFK. Viewing his presidency through the lens of the tumultuous years that followed, the American public continues to name Kennedy as one of the best U.S. presidents to have held the office. Now, as researchers and historians continue to nuance and complicate historical narratives, it is difficult to view the 35th president with same unqualified admiration he once garnered, but his charismatic leadership, his ambition, and the sense that he was guiding the country in a new direction have remained lasting inspiration for the public life of many individuals and institutions.

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In 2010, for the 50th anniversary of Kennedy’s election, Princeton University’s K Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library held an S exhibit of documents from both his political e career and from his very brief stint as a c Princeton undergrad. (Kennedy was a member P of Princeton’s Class of 1939 for less than a o ssemester, at which point he withdrew due to illness and transferred to Harvard.) Alongside a il Christmas card Kennedy and his roommates C circulated among their friends, and political c correspondences he maintained later in life, the c exhibition also housed his application essay to e tthe university. If Kennedy, who would later pen tthe Pulitzer Prize-winning volume of short biographies Profiles in Courage, showed any b hint of his future writerly prowess, it was in his h extreme terseness of his prose. Here is the text e of his essay in full: o

John F. Kennedy sits next to his typewriter and his book “Why England Slept” at Harvard in 1940.

President Kennedy signs the Maternal Child Health and Mental Retardation Planning Bill (H. R. 7544). White House, Cabinet Room, Washington, D.C. on October 24, 1963. Among the many onlookers is the President’s sister, Eunice Kennedy Shriver, far right. Photograph by Abbie Rowe.



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My desire to come to Princeton is prompted by a number of reasons. I feel that it can give me a better background and training than any other university, and can give me a true liberal education. Ever since I entered school, I have had the ambition to enter Princeton, and I sincerely hope I can reach my goal. Then too, I feel the environment of Princeton is second to none, and cannot but help having a good effect on me. To be a “Princeton Man” is indeed an enviable distinction.

Perhaps not incidentally, Kennedy’s application essay to Harvard was nearly identical. Princeton University administrators, though, evidently didn’t harbor many hard feelings about his transfer. Reunion Hall, the site of Kennedy’s freshman residence, was demolished in 1965, but the Class of 1939 Dormitory houses a bronze plaque framed by bricks rescued from his Reunion Hall room—a poignant commemoration of his time on campus.

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(LEFT) President Kennedy, John F. Kennedy Jr., Mrs. Kennedy, and Caroline Kennedy with Pushinka’s puppies Blackie and White Tips, and family dogs Shannon, Clipper, Wolfie, and Charlie. Hyannis Port, Squaw Island on August 14, 1963. Photograph by Cecil Stoughton. (RIGHT) President John F. Kennedy and First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy greet guests during the Reception Honoring the Centennial of the Emancipation Proclamation in the Cross Hall, White House, Washington, D.C. on February 12, 1963. Photo By Robert Knudsen.

CENTENNIAL CELEBRATIONS May 29 of this year marked the centennial of JFK’s birthday, and institutions across the nation are hosting events and installations to commemorate the occasion. Last summer, Congress passed an act establishing the John F. Kennedy Centennial Commision—a body intended to organize events related to the Kennedy centennial. Upon the legislation’s passage, Sen. John McCain remarked, “There are few leaders throughout history whose legacy of service and iconic leadership have inspired the country the way President John F. Kennedy has. I’m proud Congress has passed our legislation to create this commission, which will not only help Americans celebrate JFK’s remarkable life, but ensure his legacy lives on for generations to come.” Beyond congressional legislation, The John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum has taken the helm in organizing Kennedy-related events, coordinating a year-long nationwide series of events, activities, and exhibitions among organizations including the U.S. Navy, the Peace Corps, The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the United States Postal Service, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, White House Historical Association, the John Fitzgerald Kennedy National Historic Site, and John F. Kennedy Airport. Numerous organizations in Massachusetts, where the Kennedy family has deep roots, are also taking part in the celebrations. The Kennedy Library itself, located in Boston, is host to one of the series’s flagship installations: an exhibit entitled “JFK 100—Milestones & Mementos,” which will run, open to the public, through May 2018. A total of 100 objects, documents, and ephemera from throughout JFK’s life will be on display, including some of JFK’s sunglasses and ties; a flag from PT 109, the patrol torpedo boat he commanded during World War II; a

scrapbook he compiled as a high school student; and a suitcase he used on the campaign trail in 1960. Stacey Bredhoff, the curator of the exhibition, writes that the collection “[humanizes] an elusive historical figure, while bringing his timeless message of hope to a world that still yearns to hear it.” Bredhoff contends that his leadership in the wake of WWII galvanized a fragile American public, bringing out its most dearly held commitment to public service. “He gave voice to the nation’s noblest aspirations,” she writes. It’s a sentiment echoed by Dr. Louise Mirrer, president and CEO of the New York Historical Society, which, is hosting a photo exhibit entitled “American Visionary: John F. Kennedy’s Life and Times,” running through early January 2018. “Certainly the presidency of John F. Kennedy... continues to loom large in the American consciousness,” she says. “The issues Americans confronted at the time may seem remote to us today. Still, many of the questions raised—above all, equal rights and Americans’ obligations on foreign shores—are still pondered in our time.” The “American Visionary” collection contains a wealth of photos, some well-known, others previously unpublished, spanning both the high drama of Kennedy’s public life—and through that, the questions facing the American public to which Dr. Mirrer alludes—as well as the warmth of his family life. The collection features the work of some of the greatest photojournalists of the late 1940s through the early 1960s, including photos by Ed Clark, Lisl Steiner, and Ralph Crane. For now—and rightly so—in the hearts and minds of so many Americans, Camelot lives on.

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8/15/17 10:24:53 AM

photographs courtesy of the hun school

Q&A with Ryan Hews, Upper School Head of The Hun School of Princeton

Tell us about The Hun School’s history and current campus location. The Hun School was founded by Princeton University math professor John Gale Hun as a tutoring school over a century ago. Dr. Hun was renowned for his ability to inspire a passion for learning in each individual student, and that philosophy remains at the core of our mission today. We are the only boarding school located in downtown Princeton, New Jersey. Our campus sits on 45 idyllic acres overlooking Stony Brook. It is easily accessible from New York and Philadelphia as well as several major airports and train stations. Being The Hun School of Princeton is more than just a name to us. We aspire to be and to inspire our students to be responsible leaders and members of the Princeton community. What grades does The Hun School serve and how do the staff and faculty promote joyful learning? The Hun School serves boys and girls in grades six through 12 and post graduates. We’re proud that our faculty have helped us become a leader in student-centered education. Focusing on the skill development of each student, our faculty understand that students need to be more than just consumers of information. They lead by allowing students the opportunity to do rather than just listen, to achieve deeper levels of understanding because they are fully engaged and having fun. Students are also able to connect better with their teachers if they can laugh and explore together in a hands-on environment. Therefore, our faculty make joyful teaching and learning a priority in and out of the classroom. They do this through their own impassioned approach and by encouraging students to find a personal interest in every learning experience. Academic excellence and joy aren’t mutually exclusive, and our faculty have helped establish a community of learners that is both kind and vigorous and we hear from current, past, and prospective students that this environment is what sets us apart. Describe the boarding experience. Our boarding program is essential to life at The Hun School. It brings together a highly-diverse student population from 30 countries and 18 states. All of our students, boarding and day, Middle and Upper, benefit from the diversity of our collective experiences as well as the 24-hour learning environment. Programming, activities, faculty, and of course meals, are available on nights and weekends. We enjoy cultural celebrations, wellness programs, films, and guest speakers in a relaxed, familial environment. In addition, Princeton University, Central New Jersey, New York, and Philadelphia offer innumerable cultural and education opportunities that our students and faculty readily enjoy. We are uniquely a day and a boarding school and offer the benefits of both to our students and their families. Our



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day students may not sleep here, but they mix with and enjoy the community of our boarding program as if they lived here with us. Give some examples of The Hun School’s vibrant student life, including any school traditions. When students enter Hun, whether it be in sixth grade or ninth, they are assigned to a Raider House, and they remain a member of that House for life. Throughout the year, the Raider Houses compete across grade levels for points, which determine the winner of the Hun Cup. These spirited contests — athletic, artistic, and academic — allow mentoring across grade levels and have their roots in Hun School history. One of my favorite Hun moments is seeing senior House leaders hoist their sixth grade teammates in the air to celebrate a dodge ball victory. The peer leadership and character development of each student is reinforced through this important tradition. How does The Hun School prepare students for college and beyond? The Hun School is a pioneer in skills-based education. While many schools talk about the importance of this approach, very few systematically impart theses skills across grade levels and disciplines, offering students assessment of their skill development and meaningful opportunities to demonstrate mastery. By prioritizing the development of these skills over content, our graduates possess an agility that gives them an edge in college and in their careers. Hun alumni report being well prepared for college and life across traditional disciplines, but more importantly as collaborators, leaders, and innovators. What are The Hun School’s plans for the future? In a world of constant change, Hun will continue to lead the re-imagination of education for our students and the world they will help create. In recent years, we have focused much of this effort on developing student-centered classrooms, to facilitate hands-on and skills-based learning over lecture-style teaching. Moving forward, we plan to continue Dr. Hun’s philosophy of individual attention to students’ needs and give our faculty all of the tools they need to be exceptional mentors. Additionally, we will have some exciting news to share soon about a new experiential program that will allow all of our students to have real-world, inter-disciplinary experiences as part of their Hun School experience. On an administrative level, we will be working to bolster our endowment and philanthropic support, to ensure that our facilities grow to match our educational approach. As an example, this fall we are opening a newly renovated Middle School building, which boasts classrooms designed specifically to facilitate Harkness discussions and innovative learning projects.

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8/17/17 3:28:09 PM

photographs courtesy of Fairleigh Dickinson University

Q&A with Drew Ippolito, Director of Undergraduate Admissions and Marketing at Fairleigh Dickinson University’s Metropolitan Campus and Donna Tatarka, Director of Undergraduate Admissions at FDU’s Florham Campus

Describe Fairleigh Dickinson University’s current campus locations. The Florham campus is a picturesque liberal arts college setting just 35 miles from New York City in Madison, N.J. The campus is situated on the former country estate of early 20th-century socialites Florence Vanderbilt and Hamilton Twombly. With a high-energy atmosphere in a scenic riverside setting, Fairleigh Dickinson University’s Metropolitan Campus in Teaneck, N.J. provides the complete college experience. Situated on the banks of the Hackensack River, FDU Metro sits six miles from New York City, and offers a wide range of academic disciplines and countless cultural, social, and career opportunities. FDU also owns two international campuses in Wroxton, England and Vancouver, Canada. These global locations provide students with unequaled opportunities to study abroad What are the benefits offered to students by FDU’s close proximity to New York City? Nearby New York City is a “second neighborhood” for FDU students. Conveniently located at the center of the New Jersey business corridor and within easy reach of New York City, both campuses provide access to countless internship opportunities. New York City also offers entertainment and cultural enrichment opportunities for the FDU student body. How many different degrees and disciplines does Fairleigh Dickinson offer? With over 100 majors and concentrations, FDU offers opportunities for study across a wide range of academic disciplines. Students study with inspiring faculty, participate in challenging honors programs, engage in hands-on research, explore other cultures, and gain the professional knowledge and skills essential for future success. Students can earn both a bachelor’s and master’s degrees in just five years through FDU’s Combined Degree Advantage Program (with continued scholarship support in the fifth year of study). FDU also offers an accelerated B.S. and Doctor of Pharmacy Program where students can complete three years of undergraduate study at FDU and four years of study at FDU’s School of Pharmacy and Health Services. In addition, FDU provides both Pre-Med and Pre-Law programs that allow students to gain hands-on

experience and receive the guidance necessary for admission to medical and law school. Why is Fairleigh Dickinson consistently rated a “Top Value” college? Fairleigh Dickinson University provides an unparalleled living and learning experience. The wide range of academic options, career-focused internships, challenging honors programs, amazing study abroad programs, winning D-I and D-III athletic programs, and a vibrant campus life make FDU an exciting, value-added institution. And, through its generous scholarship programs, FDU is an affordable option. In fact, FDU was ranked fourth in Money magazine’s “Best Colleges for Your Money” in New Jersey. FDU has also been cited for its academic quality in many other publications including “Best Universities in the North Region” (U.S. News & World Report’s Best Colleges), “A Top Regional Independent University” (College Choice), “The Best 294 Business Schools” (Princeton Review), “A Top 15 Hospitality Program” (Princeton Review Gourman Report), and “A Best Undergraduate Business Program” and “Best Undergraduate Engineering Program” (U.S. News & World Report). Give examples of ways in which FDU alumni are influencing the world. In its 75-year history, FDU has prepared more than 125,000 alumni for successful careers and for leading roles on the global stage. From broadcasting and entertainment to engineering and management, graduates have made a profound impact in a wide variety of endeavors. Just a few examples include people like Reed Brody (international human rights lawyer), Marc Chalom (creator of A&E’s Biography series), Richard Codey (former governor of New Jersey), John Legere (chief executive officer and president of T-Mobile US), Peggy Noonan (presidential speechwriter and columnist), Greg Olsen (entrepreneur, engineer, and the third private citizen to orbit the Earth on the International Space Station), and Marta Tellado (president and CEO of Consumer Reports).

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8/17/17 1:16:23 PM

photographs courtesy of Far Brook School

Q&A with Amy Ziebarth, Head of School at Far Brook School

Describe Far Brook School’s location and campus. Nestled comfortably on nine wooded acres in Short Hills, red clapboard buildings house light-filled classrooms that open directly to the outdoors. By design, students experience the natural world in all seasons and weather. The campus lifts our spirits and inspires us even on a rainy or snowy day. The hall, gym, playing fields, playgrounds, sandbox, and courtyards provide community spaces. Our new Music and Arts Building and Kronthal Science and Environmental Center feature a greenhouse, the Fisher Woodshop, and customized learning spaces that open to the Schoolyard Wetlands Habitat. What are the bedrocks of a Far Brook School education? The 10-year journey from nursery through eighth grade is intentionally designed to empower children to be critical thinkers, problem-solvers, analytical readers, and writers with a global perspective. Our students are honored for their ideas and creativity, and given the support and freedom to take risks. In math, science, art, and woodshop, students are makers, inventors, and builders, embracing process. The progressive curriculum is interdisciplinary and infused with arts and music to encourage depth of study, understanding, and interactive classroom discussions. Every student participates in sports, drama, music, singing, and community service, experiences which help them become compassionate leaders and ethical citizens. It is our hope that we have created an inspired and unhurried atmosphere where children can grow and learn. Describe the ages and recent accomplishments of your student body. Our richly diverse student body of 230 children range from 3 and 15 years of age. The small, N-8 environment offers an extended childhood, where older students are given leadership opportunities and the gift of high expectations. They are role models for younger children. All students participate in community service. Over 60 percent of our students are eligible for the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth program each year. Our graduates are well-prepared for rigorous high school settings; poised, comfortable working in collaborative environments, engaging in conversation with their peers, sharing their ideas and perspectives, and advocating for their positions. Approximately 75 percent attend independent day schools, while 25 percent choose their local public high school or boarding school. What are some of your school’s longstanding traditions? Important traditions are milestones that provide our students a sense of place and security. Each day in morning meeting, singing together feeds our souls and builds our community. We listen, become aware of our surroundings, and share experiences.



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During our Thanksgiving processional, a joyful celebration of the harvest in which all students sing great choral works, we collect food for those in need. In our unique graduation tradition, each student speaks about their time at Far Brook, then performs in a Shakespeare play, their gift back to the School community. How is technology used to enhance student learning? Each experience with technology should expand our students’ view of and ability to interact with the world. A variety of tools provide faculty and students the freedom to explore and take risks. We show children the powerful possibilities of technology, emphasizing the ability to create, express themselves, and effect positive change. While learning about water conservation, our second graders communicated with a school in Palestine through Level Up Village, embracing a more global perspective on how saving water impacts people around the world. Problem-based learning is enhanced in our flipped classrooms, where students learn through teacher-created online videos at home, then use their new knowledge in class to work on group projects and real-life issues. How are the arts essential to a Far Brook School education? The concept of “learning through the arts” is based on deepening the learning experience for children and increasing the flexibility and creativity of the brain. Integrating arts into daily curriculum allows children to convey what they may not yet be able to express verbally and teaches that there is more than one solution to a problem. Through the arts, children learn cultural diversity and heritage, to make qualitative judgments, to work independently as well as in a group, to notice and appreciate subtleties, to be flexible, and to celebrate the many ways the world around them is experienced and interpreted. We believe that education deeply felt and experienced is lasting and enjoyable. What are Far Brook’s plans for the future? Our new state-of-the-art science and arts buildings have enabled us to expand creative and investigative learning. To prepare students for more global futures and careers that have yet to be invented, we continue our focus on nurturing children’s natural curiosity and providing them with a foundation of critical thinking and problem-solving skills and inspiring questioning through our expanding STEAM programs. This fall, we host our second Widening the Lens conference, expanding conversations on diversity and equity within New Jersey independent schools to generate actionable ideas to make our schools and communities more inclusive spaces.

september 2017

8/17/17 10:29:46 AM

photographs courtesy of solebury school

Q&A with Tom Wilschutz, Head of School at Solebury School

Describe Solebury School’s location and unique campus features. In the early 1920s, Solebury School’s four founders had a vision for a new and different kind of school, one that would translate the lessons they had learned while working at Camp Marienfeld, an all-boys summer camp in New Hampshire. Thus, in establishing Solebury in 1925, it was important that the setting be bucolic, beautiful, and emphasize the outdoors. They found such a place on a rolling, 90-acre farm just outside the city of New Hope, in historic Bucks County, Pa. Today, Solebury School is still nestled on this rolling landscape, surrounded by preserved lands and timber, with a campus that has a mixture of 18th-century buildings alongside many more modern structures. Bisected by a stream flowing into a pond, our students travel to their classes along walkways that take them outside between virtually every class. It’s a bit like attending a school situated in a national park, but one with easy access to exciting urban areas such as New York City and Philadelphia. How does Solebury’s size inform the student-faculty relationship? Solebury is an intentionally small school, with 235 students in grades seven-12. Our size remains critical to our educational philosophy. With an average class size of 11, our faculty can get to know each and every one of our students — who they are, what sparks their interest, how they learn best; our size enables us to provide an education tailored to each individual student. Complementing the academic experience, our boarding program further prepares our students for the critical transition to college and greater independence. For the 90-plus years of our existence, if you ask alumni what they remember and value most about their Solebury experience, 99 percent will echo the same sentiment: the excellence and accessibility of the teachers and their student-centered approach to education. The magic of a Solebury education has always been that connection between a teacher and their student. In what ways do Solebury’s Middle and Upper Schools honor the individual? If there is one characteristic that defines Solebury School, it is the respect and acceptance offered to everyone. At Solebury there is no “in crowd.” This richly diverse student body accepts and respects everyone for who they are and who they are becoming. Our Middle School nurtures our youngest students and offers an age-

appropriate “community within a community.” Many of these students become leaders in our Upper School. A number of our programs are tailored to individual learning styles and interests. We offer a Learning Skills Program for students who have languagebased learning differences, a Bridge Program for students who need some assistance with executive functioning skills, and a Math Enrichment and Support Program. We also offer over 30 Advanced Placement and Honors courses, and a rich array of courses in the arts, such as Rock Band, Master Singers, Swing Dance, and Theater. If you have an interest, we have a course! Give some examples of Solebury’s multi-disciplinary approach to education. In 11th grade, Solebury’s best students have the opportunity to take American Studies — affectionately termed “Amstud.” A combination of AP U.S. History and Honors English, this course is co-taught by members of the English and history departments. In their sophomore year, students may elect an honors-level ethics course, taught by three different instructors over the course of the trimester — each bringing their unique perspective. Weaving together English, history, film, and theater, Solebury offers classes in film analysis and script writing/ directing, taught by professionals with long careers in the industry. Annually Solebury School sponsors STEM Week, weaving together various threads of science and math, as well as offering an Arts Festival—a weeklong celebration of all the arts. What are Solebury’s plans for the future? Last year, the board of trustees adopted an ambitious strategic plan that will chart the path of Solebury School for the next 20 to 30 years. Planned enrollment growth, primarily in the boarding population, will have a ripple effect for both staffing and facilities over the coming decades. Our strong academic program continues to grow as we continue to enrich the curriculum — Robotics, Coding, Film Analysis, Engineering I and II, Architecture, and Teach2Serve (a social entrepreneurship course focused on social change), and on and on. Our plans are ambitious and our vision clear: to preserve the core qualities and characteristics that make us Solebury School, while continuing to offer a cutting-edge academic experience in the nurturing environment that distinguishes Solebury School.

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8/18/17 3:42:12 PM

photographs courtesy ofthe peddie school.

Peddie School Welcomes Students With Diverse Talents, Backgrounds

For more than 150 years, Peddie School has been built on great teaching and learning, as well as a focus on striving for excellence in citizenship. “We often say there is no typical Peddie student,” said Headmaster Peter Quinn. “But all Peddie students carry excitement, curiosity and character. These are the values we treasure most.” Quinn said the school, located on 280 beautiful acres in Highstown, N.J., welcomes students from a range of academic talents and interests—something that makes the community stronger. “Our community is strengthened by its diversity,” he said. Peddie is committed to the intellectual, social, and moral growth of each of its students. Founded in 1864 and taking its current name from philanthropist and politician Thomas B. Peddie, Peddie School is a coeducational independent high school just outside of Princeton and about 50 miles from both New York City and Philadelphia. With two world-class cities nearby, the school takes great advantage of its location. When the school staged an all-student production of Les Miserables last year, for example, both the musical director and a lead actress from the Broadway production were brought in to workshop with the student actors and pit musicians. In every aspect of school life (academic, athletic and extracurricular), students are challenged to reach beyond their expectations and define success by the progress they make. “We take students further than they can imagine,” Quinn said. “We expect students to try new things as well as find and pursue their area of passion.” In addition to completing the required curriculum, Peddie students also have



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(Carefully, and Not All the Time)


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8/15/17 10:32:07 AM


o one is asking children to give up their sports. But it’s getting a little crazy out there. In one generation, sports have gone from child’s play to a proving ground for elite athletes—many of whom haven’t even graduated eighth grade—who commit to strenuous schedules, trainers, travel teams, coaches, aggressive tactics, and year-round seasons that give a young body no quarter for rest and growth. Coaches book flights to cities far beyond their hometowns. Parents shell out thousands of dollars for participation fees. And college recruiters wait eagerly in the background until it’s time to dangle offers that are impossible to resist. Maybe we should pause for a moment to think about where all of this is going. “When did cheerleading become a sport where a 10-year-old girl is at risk for a serious brain injury?” asks Dr. Emil Matarese, director of the Concussion Program at Capital Health’s Capital Institute for Neurosciences in Pennington. He recalls a client who was referred to him after a cheer fall that left her so disoriented she couldn’t recite the date of her own birthday. “The girls at the base of the pyramid she was on were supposed to catch her. But because of their young age and inexperience, they flinched, and this girl landed on her head. This was the first time I’d seen a child that young with a concussion. “I’ve spent a large portion of my career doing this,” adds Dr. Matarese, “and I’ve come to realize that what was previously thought of as a minor insult, what we used to call ‘ringing one’s bell,’ is in fact a potentially life-altering and serious injury. We are now at a stage in our society where we are pushing younger and younger athletes to achieve skill sets that previously were reserved for those in college or on professional sports teams. We’re seeing more serious head injuries, more forceful blows, in younger athletes than we ever have.” Concussions are not always detected by routine examination, he cautions. The young cheerleader was taken to an emergency room where personnel told her that her brain looked normal. Yet her impairment was so obvious that, by the time she got to Dr. Matarese, she looked like “a deer in the headlights.” Every concussion is different. Some require a few weeks of rest. Others may need a year or more of monitoring. Social and academic skills can suffer. september 2017

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LIFELONG IMPACT The adolescent brain is not fully developed, so injuries that go untreated can have a lifelong impact. In addition, assumptions about the sports that cause such injuries are not complete. It isn’t always football and rugby that put athletes at risk. Two of the more serious head injuries Dr. Matarese treated occurred in a young golfer whose skull was cracked by a golf ball and a tennis player who fell on the court. A deeply compassionate neurologist who also serves as an advisor for the Brian Injury Alliance of New Jersey, Dr. Matarese acknowledges the benefits of sports. He spells them out without hesitation. But if we are going to push our competitors, he says, then parents, coaches, teachers, and athletes themselves must be vigilant on behalf of young people who are putting their health on the line. In most cases, a concussion is a temporary, recoverable neurological deficit. But when it goes untreated and the brain is exposed to a second injury, Second-Impact Syndrome can cause permanent impairment, or worse. Another young woman, a junior in high school, came to Dr. Matarese’s practice after she had received a full scholarship to Harvard University. But during a softball tournament, she was struck in the head with a ball. The young woman did not mention the injury. Three days later, she was struck in the head again. The back-to-back blows caused such neurological damage that the young woman barely finished high school and needed enrollment in a special program to complete a community college education.



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“She was never able to achieve her full potential in life. I could cry,” says Dr. Matarese. “Over time, as long as there is no permanent damage, most concussions should fully resolve. If it’s an isolated incident, the patient will get better. But if they keep playing and don’t give the brain time to rest and heal, you will keep seeing these devastating events in otherwise healthy, talented young athletes.”

BONES, JOINTS, AND SOFT TISSUE Dr. John Lawrence of the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) doesn’t need statistics to demonstrate the pronounced increase in pediatric and adolescent sports injuries. He sees it in his office every day. An attending orthopedic surgeon at CHOP with expertise in anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) reconstruction, Dr. Lawrence says the rising number of injuries is evidence of two trends: an increase in the number of young female athletes, who are more than twice as

susceptible to ACL injuries as young men; and dramatic rates of overuse. “If you’re a kid playing soccer now, it’s not enough to just play intramural soccer,” says Dr. Lawrence. “The mentality of most of the patients coming to my office is, ‘We have to start playing and specializing in a sport at an exceptionally early age, and we’ve got to play year-round.’ There’s your spring play, then your summer league, then your fall, indoor league, and your winter league. There’s always a push for these kids to get to the next-best development teams and the state cups and the national competitions. “Now,” he adds, “there are travel soccer teams for 6-year-olds.” Knee injuries are far and away the most common ailment he treats. While ankle injuries are the No. 1 epidemiological sports injury category, there usually is not a significant loss of game time for most of those patients. Knee injuries, however, can take up to a year or more for full recovery. A 12-year-old, nationally-ranked skier in Dr. Lawrence’s practice crashed during a race and sustained a fracture of her tibia and also broke the attachment point for her ACL. “She’s a wonderful, articulate girl. And we ultimately put her back together again so that she is able to do her normal training as a skier,” says Dr. Lawrence. “But she definitely typifies that explosion of organized sports, in that she’s been ski racing ever since she was knee-high to a toadstool.” Dr. Lawrence underscores the importance of neuromuscular development programs, here and across the country, that equip young athletes with knowledge about the foundational fitness that staves off injury. Participants learn how to warm up and how to fall; they learn safer positions for loading their joints; and, in general, how the body moves optimally and along specific “tracks” that cut the risk of injury. Other resources indicate, for instance, how many pitches Johnny can throw before he needs to rest his arm. And state and federal guidelines now dictate criteria for the handling of concussions and other athletic injuries. “If these young athletes can’t get their coaches and clubs to institute these neuromuscular control programs, then they can do it on their own,” says Dr. Lawrence. “The bottom line is, don’t play with pain. Don’t play through pain. It’s a hard message for kids to get because they’re getting the push from multiple directions, from coaches and parents and teammates. But they should know: If they have any sort of pain, stop.”

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…AND EVERYTHING ELSE Dr. Maria Halluska-Handy, a board-certified emergency physician now specializing in non-operative orthopedic care with Bucks County Orthopedic Specialists in Doylestown, Pa., says some of the biggest factors in increased risk for sports injuries are the very fatigue and repetitive use that stem from “four seasons of soccer.” Tendinitis. Hairline fractures. Concussions from collisions. Athletes put themselves at a higher risk for injury when they are doing too much, too soon, and without the requisite rest and recovery time. “Football, ice hockey, lacrosse, rugby. Overall, those are the highest-risk sports,” says Dr. Halluska-Handy. “But the highest overall numbers of people who get concussions are actually playing girls soccer, and that’s because you have the highest number of participants. Most catastrophic is cheerleading. You’re throwing people up in the air without any kind of head protection. The physics of that couldn’t be more devastating.” Dr. Halluska-Handy explains that a child or adolescent is not simply a little adult, but another entity altogether. Their brains are different in that they are still growing and developing, their joints are more flexible, and their bones are more “plastic.” They more often have “greenstick fractures,” in which the bone doesn’t break all the way through, the way a young tree branch can be bent and snapped but not broken. The options for treatment and manage-

ment are therefore also different for adolescents. One patient recently seen by Dr. HalluskaHandy had a wrist injury from skateboarding, with pronounced swelling and a deformity of the wrist. Dr. Halluska-Handy ended up doing a hematoma block, in which the anesthetic is injected directly into the fracture site to provide the

local pain management during manipulation of the fracture. “He handled it like a champ,” she adds. “I am frequently amazed by how well kids can tolerate procedures that will make adults cringe.” In terms of symptoms that should precipitate an urgent doctor or emergency room visit, Dr. Halluska- Handy looks for simple things: “Is there

obvious deformity (bent at a weird angle)? Can you move the part of the extremity below the level of the injury (usually fingers or toes)? Can you feel them? Are they numb or tingly? Is the color and temperature normal? Or is there just extreme pain? In terms of head injury, is there dizziness, nausea, or lightheadedness? Is the pain so severe that it’s disrupting sleep? If so, then, we need to take a look,” she says. “Just in general, be aware of overuse syndrome. Making sure kids get adequate rest physically and mentally is half the battle to avoid injuries in the first place. Make sure they’re appropriately hydrated. Manage chronic medical conditions — have asthma inhalers up-to-date, for instance. And have an overall idea of when to seek more urgent medical attention. “And this is going to be a really bad year for ticks that carry Lyme disease,” Dr. Halluska-Handy adds. “So don’t forget to keep checking for them well into the fall season.”

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Photographs courtesy of Princeton University’s Lewis Center for the Arts Photo by Bentley Drezner.



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september 2017

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by anne levin

A Place to Create and Collaborate Staging one of her dances for the Lyon Opera Ballet in France a few decades ago, choreographer Susan Marshall was thrilled to find herself in a newly remodeled, state-of-the-art theater with spacious rehearsal studios and plenty of room to test out her ideas. It was like a dream come true, “a sort of fantasy that was actually happening,” Marshall recalls.


or Marshall, since 2009 the director of dance at Princeton class of 1955, donated $101 million to get the project started in 2006. Lewis, University’s Lewis Center for the Arts, an even bigger fantasy who was president of Progressive Insurance Company, died in 2013. has materialized. The Lewis Center’s $300-million-plus, multiThe plan for the 22-acre Arts and Transit Neighborhood called for building arts complex along Alexander Street and University the relocation of the Dinky train station some 460 feet south. There was Place is everything the Opera Nouvel in considerable opposition, legal and otherwise, from Lyon offered her, and more. some members of the community. But the University The new complex designed by Steven prevailed, and the old station and its neighboring Holl Architects doubles the studio space of the building have been turned into the popular eateries University’s dance department. Two of the four Cargot Brasserie and The Dinky Bar & Kitchen. large studios also function as theaters. “They are Some Princeton residents also expressed spacious, they have light, and they feel inviting,” concerns that the Arts and Transit complex would says Marshall. “And each one has its own character. serve the University community, but leave the public It’s just thrilling.” out. Not so, according to those involved. Dance is just one of the arts being given a “I sometimes refer to the new Arts Neighborhood monumental boost by the opening of the Lewis as Berlind Alexanderplatz,” says Michael Cadden, Center. The complex will house the University’s chair of the Lewis Center and a well-known programs in dance, theater, musical theater, and professor of theater. “Little did we realize when the multi-disciplinary Princeton Atelier, as well as the University collaborated with the McCarter the music department’s expansion to supplement Theatre in the construction of the Roger S. Berlind what is already located in the Woolworth Center of Theater in 2003 that it would be the prelude to Musical Studies. the construction of an entire neighborhood. The The new arts center opens officially with a Berlind has added immeasurably to the community campus-wide arts festival October 5-8 (see sidebar). arts scene and I expect the Lewis Arts complex to It is as much about encouraging collaborative do no less. It will give our students proper venues thinking as it is about adding space and gleaming to share what they produce in collaboration with new facilities. Princeton follows a liberal arts model in our teachers and guest artists. It will also give the which the arts relate to each other and to academic greater Princeton community an opportunity to areas of study. “It’s a partnership of scholarship and participate in their creative processes and to assess practice,” says Marion Young, the Lewis Center’s their final products.” administrative director. “These new buildings are “Just the location itself will be an exciting place, dedicated in many ways to practice, performance, even if you’re just moving through it,” says Ms. and collaboration. It’s about the making of art and Choreographer Susan Marshall, photographed by Tom Grimes. Young. “Yes, there will be students there. But it is the study of art.” definitely open to the public.” It was over a decade ago that former University president Shirley The architects faced multiple challenges. “We wanted to radically Tilghman envisioned a multi-disciplinary arts initiative that would elevate transform the southwest edge of campus and create a completely new the quality of Princeton’s cultural offerings. Peter B. Lewis, a member of the arrival experience, while connecting it to the community,” says Noah Yaffe,

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8/23/17 1:20:22 PM

Photographs courtesy of Princeton University Aerial taken as construction neared completion by Aerial Photos of NJ, courtesy of Princeton University Office of Design and Construction.

Exterior photograph of the complex by Christopher Lillja, courtesy of Princeton University Office of Design and Construction.



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september 2017

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Photographs courtesy of Princeton University’s Lewis Center for the Arts

Princeton University Orchestra

Into The Woods, photo by Larry Levanti.

PLOrk—Princeton Laptop Orchestra

a partner with the Holl firm. “And a very specific goal was to elevate the programs in the arts, particularly theater and dance. We had to knit those goals together and maximize the collaboration and exchange between the arts.” A three-sided courtyard that relates to existing campus traditions, a large reflecting pool, and a forum are all key components of the design. It is the forum, which is located underneath the reflecting pool, that most excites Cadden. “That’s where colleagues and students from both Lewis Center programs and the Department of Music will pour into before and after classes and events,” he says. “We’ve done lots of wonderful work with the Music Department over the years, but now we’ll be living cheek by jowl. Good fences may make good neighbors, as Frost suggested, but I’m happy that this space is all about the gates in the fence. It should prove to be a wonderful place for serendipitous encounters and for off-center collaborations of all kinds. It’s also a place where audiences might gather after a show to chat with friends about what they’ve just seen. I’m also looking forward to the visual atmosphere of the forum, as it will be partially lit by skylights in the floor of the pool in the outdoor plaza above.” The three-story Music Building has practice rooms and teaching studios that are suspended from the roof to assure sound isolation. “This one of the most interesting things for us,” says Yaffe. “We wanted to take the idea of acoustic isolation and give it architectural expression. They are like individual boxes.” Members of the Princeton University Orchestra, the Princeton Laptop Orchestra, the chamber orchestra Sinfonia, and various jazz ensembles will be able to rehearse in a room with 30-foot ceilings and adjustable acoustics. All of the practice rooms have new Steinway pianos. A separate, 800-squarefoot jazz studies studio is one of several specialized teaching facilities in the

building. Operating for several years out of a former elementary school at 185 Nassau Street, the University’s dance department was desperate for more space. “We have been up against a wall in terms of how many courses we can offer and at what times,” says Marshall. “We have been kind of frozen in terms of what we can offer. With the new building, we can involve more students.” The new home for dance provides more space, under one roof. “We have had the Hagan Dance Studio at 185 Nassau and another large studio at New South, which is on the opposite side of the campus,” Marshall says. “That left students and faculty dashing across campus to get to meetings and classes. With all the faculty and studio courses now in the same building, I think drop-in conversations among students and faculty will be so much easier and healthier and productive for everyone.” “I don’t think there is another department on campus that is experiencing such a sea change in the facility,” Yaffe says of the dance building. “There were so many things we weren’t interested in replicating from 185 Nassau, but the spirit of collaboration is something we wanted to build on. There is kind of a wonderful energy at 185, and our concern was to maintain and augment that in this new building. The connectivity between the pieces and the programs are part of that. There is also lounge space and stair circulation spaces that allow for impromptu collaborations. And that is key to how Princeton views the programs for the arts.” Marshall expects that the arts complex will become a destination, “a natural hangout,” she says. “With its proximity to the new restaurants and McCarter Theatre, people will naturally come through our buildings. All of the spaces will make these three arts—dance, music, and theater—feel more tangible and available.” The buildings are made of a variety of materials, including translucent

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8/15/17 10:42:27 AM

To celebrate its opening after four years of construction and a decade of planning, Princeton University’s Lewis Center for the Arts is hosting a three-day party that is open to the public and mostly free. From October 5-8, from one end of the campus to the other, the University will offer dance, music, concerts, plays, readings, art shows, multi-discplinary presentations, community workshops, and site-specific events. It opens with the biennial Princeton Poetry Festival, which will showcase poets from Canada, China, Cuba, Iceland, Macedonia, Northern Ireland, the Netherlands, Serbia, the U.K, and U.S. in a series of readings and panel discussions organized by Pulitzer Prize-winning poet and Princeton faculty member Paul Muldoon. The Poetry Festival continues on October 6. The following day, a specially commissioned “electronic fanfare” will have original music on specially made instruments performed by the Princeton Laptop Orchestra, Tilt Brass, and Sō Percussion, combined with kinetic lighting, bodies in space, wave robotics, and rigging. The idea is to interact with the new architecture. The event will be repeated throughout the Festival. Additional events throughout the weekend include a new adaptation of Euripides’ The Bacchae, an evening-length work by choreographers Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker and Salva Sanchis set to music by John Coltrane, an opera for electric guitar called Orpheus Unsung, and a series of “performance walks” by Aaron Landsman and Alison Isenberg titled “Walking Histories: Race and Protest at Princeton and in Trenton.” There is much more, including a carillon concert, a jazz jam session open to members of the community, sing-alongs with the Princeton University Orchestra and Glee Club for musicians of all ages conducted by Michael Pratt, and other theater, music, dance, and visual art events. For a full schedule, visit lcaopening.princeton.edu.


glass. “It’s highly energy efficient and it allows for wonderful qualities of daylight,” says Yaffe. “At night, the building lights up and glows like a lantern.” It has taken four years to turn what was formerly a parking lot, for the most part, into a new complex of buildings and landscaping that create a new gateway to Princeton. “We’re just thrilled with how it turned out,” says Yaffe, who has been working on the project for a decade. “We’ve loved walking directors and faculty and trustees and donors through, and it has really been a treat to see their reactions. I think the public will feel the same.”


Dance photo by Bentley Drezner.



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Rhyme and Rhythm, Words and Wonder: Princeton’s Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith by Stuart Mitchner Princeton’s new poet laureate, Tracy K. Smith. Princeton University, Office of Communications, photography by Denise Applewhite.


you don’t count nursery rhymes, songs, and “The Night Before Christmas,” the first time poetry happened to me was at the end of the Classic Comic of Moby Dick. Each issue closed with “Highlights in the Life” of the author. Herman Melville’s ended with four couplets from a poem “published during the Civil War” that “best expresses our bewilderment of today.” I had no idea what was meant by “bewilderment.” I was 6. The Second World War was still going on. A red, white, and blue banner at the bottom of the page contained a Buy United States War Savings Bonds stamp. The lines that struck and stayed with me were these: “Can no final good be wrought?/ Over and over, again and again,/Must the fight for the Right be fought?” I had only a vague sense of the meaning beyond its being patriotic; what resonated, and still does, was the infectious play of rhyme and rhythm, especially the way it rocks the last line. The same instinct, the same receptive reflex, is still working in poetry that moves and startles and stays with me today. On first reading “Don’t You Wonder, Sometimes?” by America and Princeton’s new poet laureate Tracy K. Smith, what drew me in was the casual almost offhand wording of the title, the sense of random inquiry, like a nudge from a stranger standing beside you in the same city doorway during a thunderstorm. Right away you feel like you’re sharing a special moment rather than reading a poem. Then, three lines in, comes “Some thin-hipped glittering Bowie-being.” It’s rhyme and rhythm again and an instant rush of associations with the Starman. Just last week I was playing Blackstar for the first time since his death in January 2016 and feeling everything I felt and more when he sings “Something happened on the day he died/Spirit rose a metre and stepped aside.” And here he is “aching to make us see” in a poem written when he was alive and walking the streets of New York, and Smith already seems



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to be hearing the “aching” in the song, writing “Bowie will never die. Nothing will come for him in his sleep.” Reviewing Smith’s prize-winning volume Life On Mars (Graywolf 2011), which shares the title of one of Bowie’s most stirring word-movies, Dana Jennings in The New York Times says “The book’s strange and beautiful first section pulses with America’s adolescent crush on the impossible, on what waits beyond the edge of the universe. . . . But what’s most satisfying ... is that after the grand space opera of Part 1, with its giddy name checks of 2001 and David Bowie, Ms. Smith shows us that she can play the minor keys, too. Her Martian metaphor firmly in place, she reveals unknowable terrains: birth and death and love.” For me, the “wonder” in “Don’t You Wonder, Sometimes” is best expressed in the fourth stanza’s closing reference to “the life/ In which I’m forever a child looking out my window at the night sky/Thinking one day I’ll touch the world with bare hands/Even if it burns.”

POETRY IN PRINCETON The Princeton poetry connection dates back to Philip Freneau (Class of 1771) and 1943-44 Poet Laureate Allen Tate, first head of the Creative Writing Program now headed by Poet Laureate Smith. Another Princeton Poet Laureate is twotime Pulitzer Prize-winner W.S. Merwin, who decided to be “a poet and nothing but a poet” when studying at Princeton under John Berryman and Creative Writing Program founder R.P. Blackmur. Princeton and poetry will be in the spotlight again in October as poets from there and around the world arrive for the biannual Princeton Poetry Festival, one of the events featured in a multi-day Festival of the Arts to celebrate the opening of the new Lewis Center of the Arts complex.


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Books published this year by Princeton poets include the late C.K. Williams’s Falling Ill (Farrar Straus and Giroux), of which the Philadelphia Inquirer said “Many poets have gone out writing poems, but few have been such a poet.” Williams’s 20-year tenure at Princeton is celebrated by the C.K. Williams Reading Series in which senior thesis students at the Lewis Center read from their work, with established writers as special guests. According to The Washington Post, Paul Muldoon’s Selected Poems 19682014 (Farrar, Strauss and Giroux) “demonstrates why he has long been regarded as one of the most significant poets of the past fifty years.” In Creative Writing faculty member Susan Stewart’s latest collection Cinder: New and Selected Poems (Graywolf), she writes, in the words of The American Poetry Review, “the kind of poem, virtuosic and illuminating, that goes on giving warmth and light long after the proverbial switch has been flipped off.”

NEW FACES Two members of the Creative Writing faculty with new books out are Monica Youn and Ericka L. Sanchez. According to critic Stanley Fish, Princeton graduate Youn’s Blackacre (Graywolf Press $16) is a “remarkable series of poems,” in which “words and objects are alike subjected to a probing intelligence that is at once philosophical and psychological.” Erika L. Sánchez has been greeted as “a vital new voice in American poetry” by Eduardo C. Corral, who praises the “penetrating intelligence and lyrical precision” of her debut volume, Lessons on Expulsion (Graywolf $16), in which she “makes visible the violence striking down Mexican women living on the border and interrogates the historical and the familial origins of misogyny.”

THE BEWILDERMENT OF TODAY The institutional weight of the title U.S. Poet Laureate can seem at odds with the spirit of a poet whose most productive flights have little or nothing to do with ceremonial duties on the grand national scale. That line in the wartime comic of Moby Dick about a poem that “best expresses our bewilderment of today” sounds painfully relevant in 2017. It’s clear from Life On Mars and poems like “They May Love All That He Has Chosen and Hate All That He Has Rejected” that Tracy K. Smith is the right person to speak for poetry and poets, especially given the present state of the nation. Asked what she’s working on now, she writes that she has “a new book of poems coming out in April that takes up history as a gauge for grappling with race, violence and intolerance in our time. To my mind, the book is also yearning toward some sense of the ever after, contemplating our small fragment of the history of Eternity.”


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8/18/17 10:16:48 AM

URBAN AGENDA PHOTO CONTEST URBAN AGENDA MAGAZINE’S “SUMMER MOMENTS” PHOTO CONTEST WINNER Congratulations to our photo contest winner, Richard Sherman. Sherman is a full-time professional photographer who creates peaceful and tranquil environments through extraordinary nature images, primarily for the healthcare and hospitality markets. As a formal Navy officer, Sherman is proud to operate as a certified Veteran Owned Small Business (VOSB). Sherman has always loved water and boats, and ia drawn to the calm beauty of classic sailboats, swaying docks, and protected harbors. Sherman loves to shoot in Maine, where the cozy harbors are bordered by quaint villages, where the light is warm and the fog is dense, and where there is always a friendly lobsterman, visitor, or local stopping by to say hello. RichardShermanPhotography.com To all who submitted photos, thank you for sharing your summer memories and supporting Urban Agenda Magazine. Check our website www. urbanagendamagazine.com for details on our next photo contest!

Richard Sherman, Whisper. A sailboat moored on a foggy August day in Maine.

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8/24/17 11:25:00 AM

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morrisanimalinn.com SEPTEMBER 2017

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8/24/17 12:49:30 PM

FALL FESTIVALS St. Demetrios Greek Festival

Chatham Fine Arts & Crafts Festival


The leaves will soon be falling, the air is crisp…it’s time for fall festivals! Mark your calendar for these upcoming New Jersey events:



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Harvest Celebration, Downtown Chester

SEPTEMBER 7-10 St. Demetrios 40th Annual Greek Festival 721 Rahway Avenue, Union; Thursday 6-11PM, Friday 5-12PM, Saturday Noon-Midnight, Sunday Noon-8PM www.stdemetriosunion.org Be Greek for a weekend! Enjoy authentic Greek food prepared on premises including souvlaki, gyro, and pastries. Also beer, wine, and ouzo. Live music, DJ entertainment, folk dancing, vendors, rides and games, and free parking. SEPTEMBER 10 Chatham Fine Arts & Crafts Festival 30 Fairmount Avenue, Chatham; 10AM-5PM Now in its fifth year, this festival features more than 125 fine artisans from the tri-state area and beyond selling their creations, artist demonstrations, a free jazz concert, specialty foods, gourmet food vendors, and a hands-on craft area for children. SEPTEMBER 16 All About Downtown Street Fair Newark Avenue between Grove and Coles Streets, Jersey City; Noon-8PM www.jcdowntown.org This festival features more than 100 vendors selling all sorts of products ranging from handmade jewelry to one-of-a-kind artwork, crafts, top food trucks from the tri-state area, and lots of fun for the family. Live entertainment and music. SEPTEMBER 16-17 Bergen Street Fest Teaneck National Guard Armory, 1799 Teaneck Road, Teaneck; 11AM-11PM www.bergenstreetfest.com A two-day festival featuring gourmet food selections provided by food trucks; children’s activities including bouncy houses, face painting and more; live entertainment including cover bands and a local artist showcase; and arts and crafts vendors.




All About Downtown Street Fair, Jersey City


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Caldwell Street Fair

Madison Downtown Development Commission

Bergen Street Fest

Great Pumpkin Festival

Photography by Lisa Quiñones

Bottle Hill Day

Leonia Oktoberfest

Morristown Festival of Books

September 16-17 Fine Art and Crafts Show Anderson Park, 274 Bellevue Avenue, Upper Montclair; 10am-5pm www.rosesquared.com This show has been selected as one of Sunshine Artists’ Magazine’s top 200 shows in the country. With about 150 exhibitors, you can watch demonstrations, meet talented artists and learn what inspires them, sample specialty food treats, enjoy a variety of ethnic foods, and much more.

October 1 Caldwell Street Fair Bloomfield Avenue, Caldwell; Noon-5pm www.caldwellstreetfair.com Sponsored by the Rotary/Kiwanis and located in a six-block area on Bloomfield Avenue in the center of town, this festival features great rides, a beer garden, live band, entertainment, arts and crafts, and ethnic and regional food.

September 16 - November 5 Great Pumpkin Festival Heaven Hill Farm, 451 Route 94, Vernon www.heavenhillfarm.com One of the largest fall festivals in Northern New Jersey. Admission includes more than 30 activities including an old-fashioned hayride, corn maze, farm animals, farm market, and wine tastings. Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, Noon-5pm; Saturday and Sundays and Columbus Day, 10am – 6pm.

October 7 Bottle Hill Day Downtown Madison; 10am-5pm www.rosenet.org This festival in downtown Madison spans nearly eight blocks and features street vendors, merchant sidewalk sales, live entertainment on four stages, a beer garden, car show, amusement areas, craftspeople, and food establishments.

September 23 Franklin Day Festival Colonial Park, 156 Metters Road, Franklin Township; Noon-5pm www.franklintwpnj.org This family-friendly festival features live music, artists and craftspeople, dance performances, food trucks, children’s activities, a classic car show, art walk, putting green, and more. September 23 Leonia Oktoberfest American Legion Hall, 399 Broad Avenue, Leonia; 2-9pm www.leoniaoktoberfest.com The 18th annual Oktoberfest sponsored by the Rotary Club of The Palisades to support the Weekend Snack Pack Program at local schools. This is a family-friendly event with food and drink, kids activities, music, and German competitions.

October 13-14 Morristown Festival of Books Several historic venues, Morristown www.morristownbooks.org The Morristown Festival of Books brings together acclaimed authors with readers and book lovers. Authors will speak and answer questions for one hour at one of several Morristown locations. Book sales and signings, following author presentations, will occur at a tent on the grounds of the historic Vail Mansion. October 14 34th Annual Harvest Celebration Downtown Chester www.ilovechester.com This festival in in historic downtown Chester features apple press and woodcarving demonstrations, Chester food fest, antique cars, pumpkin painting, Colonial musketeers, and lots more.

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8/15/17 10:46:16 AM

image courtesy of Asbury Park Distilling Co.

Asbury Park Distilling Co.



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IN THE SPIRIT Craft Distilleries are Booming in New Jersey by Laurie Pellichero

From Jersey City to Cape May, craft distilleries have been quickly popping up and producing local spirits throughout the state. While craft beers and breweries have grown quite ubiquitous in New Jersey, it’s been in just the past few years that these small batch distilleries, which now number 16 and counting, have been able to produce and promote their wares.


ew Jersey has a long history of distilling going back to Colonial times, but strict alcoholic beverage control laws in place during and after Prohibition prevented the industry from growing. It wasn’t until 2013 that the New Jersey Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control instituted its first distillery license since Prohibition—to Jersey Artisan Distilling in Fairfield. This was due to the efforts of its owner and distiller Brant Braue. Braue, an electrical engineer, wanted to follow his dream of making spirits in the classic style. “Nobody wanted to change the law until it applied to them,” he said. New Jersey craft distilleries can now produce 20,000 gallons a year, which translates to about 100,000 bottles.

A Great Change Jersey Artisan Distilling, which opened in November of 2013, specializes in rums, including its Busted Barrel Silver and Busted Barrel Dark 80 proof rums, which have already won silver medals at the New York Wine and Spirits Competition. They also produce Morena Rum and 86 proof James F.C. Hyde Sorgho Whiskey, which has been on the market for just a year. They also make Hard Ice alcoholinfused sorbet, made with small batch rum and real fruit puree. “This has been a great change for me,” said Braue. “You have to have passion and love for what you do every day.” Braue said he puts in very long hours perfecting his spirits, but it’s worth it. “If I don’t like it, I won’t sell it,” he said. Braue sells his spirits on site and throughout the state, and is working with distributors to sell in other states as well. He said that rum can be un-aged, but the barrel-aged minimum is two years. Some go to five years. What he is selling now was over two years in the barrel. He offers tastings and tours on Saturdays and Sundays, along with movie nights on Thursdays where they serve treats like kettle corn made with whiskey.

feature labels by New Jersey artist Brett Strothers. “We have a craft distilling license, and aren’t afraid to use it,” joked Granata about their varied offerings. Jersey Spirits uses natural products, like real fruit, instead of chemical flavorings. Granata is excited about five different single-malt whiskeys that will be released soon, including Cherry Wood Smoked, Apple Smoked, Chocolate, Caramel, and a Straight Up Barley Malt. Both Granata and Lord agree that it is a good thing to have three distilleries all in one area. “Everyone has a different dynamic,” said Lord. “We encourage our customers to check everyone out. We all do our own thing with our own recipes. It’s all good and builds the business for everyone.” Jersey Spirits offers a special barrel share program where participants can come to the facility on the day that a new spirit is being distilled, and then come back for tastes as it is aging to see how it evolves over time. “They get a lot out of it,” said Granata. “They can appreciate it at a different level, and see it nurtured along the way. It gets people in touch with all aspects of the process, to be able to understand what is happening and when it is happening.” Granata added that the participants also have a say in when they think it is has come of age, and can take some home when it’s ready. Jersey Spirits also offers tours, tastings, craft cocktails, and bottle sales in its tasting room. There are also lots of classes, including an apprentice distiller workshop that gives participants a comprehensive experience of what it takes to make a spirit.

Local, Fresh, Handcrafted

Sourland Mountain Spirits in Hopewell was established in 2015 by Ray Disch, one of the founders of New Jersey’s original brewpub, Triumph Brewing in Princeton. After that success, Disch decided he was ready for a new challenge. So when craft distilling became legal again in New Jersey, he created a local distillery right in his hometown. New Jersey’s first farm distillery since Capital of Distilling prohibition, Sourland Mountain Spirits now makes local, fresh, handcrafted, small batch spirits using the area’s many sustainable options from herbs to fruit Fairfield has turned out to be the current capital of distilling in New Jersey, to grain, supplied by local farmers. Already the producers of award-winning gin with two other distilleries joining Jersey Artisan. Taking advantage of the area’s and vodka, Disch said that he is now aging four distillations of rum in 53-gallon zoning laws, Claremont Distilled Spirits opened in May 2014, and specializes in American white oak barrels. “It should be ready in late November, right around vodka made from New Jersey potatoes, along with whiskey and NJD Moonshine. Thanksgiving,” said Disch. Jersey Spirits Distilling Co. opened in August of 2015, and features spirits named Jersey Artisan Distilling They are also working on a barrel-aged gin, and put up their first bourbon after New Jersey places and experiences that are close to the hearts of its coin August, which is made from ingredients from a local organic farmer. It will be owners. aged for two years, with the first tasting after one year. In late October or early November Owned by Fairfield locals John Granata, Susan Lord, and Elizabeth MacDonald, Jersey they will be putting up a barrel-aged apple brandy to be ready in early 2018, just in time for Spirits creates its small batches with local and regional raw materials. Their 2,400-squarethe chilly months. foot facility includes a 1,600-square-foot distillery and 800-square-foot tasting room. Their Sourland Mountain Spirits uses state-of-the art distillery equipment in a newly renovated extensive product line has already won multiple awards and includes Main Street Vodka, barn behind the Brick Farm Tavern restaurant. Unique in New Jersey, it is the only place that Barnegat White Whiskey, Boardwalk Rum, Jersey Apple Hooch, Patriot’s Trail Bourbon, has a distillery, a restaurant, and brewery (Troon Brewing Company) on one site, all on the Jersey Pumpkin Hooch, and Hopmanics. Their Crossroads Bourbon was the first aged Double Brook Farm. bourbon whiskey produced in New Jersey since prohibition. Their distinctive bottles all

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images courtesy of Jersey Spirits Distilling Co.

Jersey Spirits Distilling Co. Disch said that Sourland Mountain Spirits are now available in 75 stores and restaurants across the state, from Morristown to Atlantic City. Tours are offered on Saturdays and Sundays, and Disch looks forward to participating in this fall’s Central Jersey Beer Fest in Mercer County Park.

An Exciting Time

“A Clean, Smooth Drink” Skunktown Distillery in Hunterdon County prides itself on offering well-priced, chemicalfree spirits made with local ingredients. It was founded by Caine Fowler and Paul Hyatt, who wanted to introduce unique craft liquors to the area “in the beauty and secrecy of Hunterdon County,” said Fowler. “We wanted to capture the essence of Hunterdon County in a distillery.” Fowler, who has lived in the Sergeantsville area his whole life, said that their main focus is a “clean, smooth drink,” with products that include rum, vodka, and whiskey. “No. 1 is using basic and natural ingredients, and naturally-occurring enzymes and yeasts — all done oldschool style. Everything we do is eco-conscious. Our liquor tastes really good straight.” Fowler explained that they distill by process of cutting gallon by gallon to extract impurities for a totally different result than mass producers. The process takes about a month from start to finish, with everything done by hand. Skunktown now has three stills, one for rum and whiskey, one for vodka, and one for “research and development — the process is trial and error, it’s a step up from moonshining,” joked Fowler. Fowler said his background in the pharmaceutical industry helps him in his new endeavor, and “I laugh a lot more these days,” he said. “I love my job.” He also said that craft distilling could revitalize the farm industry in New Jersey, with the demand for local ingredients for their unique products. “You get from the craft world what you can’t get from anyone else.” He noted that the New Jersey craft distillers all work together to promote the industry, and have even formed a guild to share ideas and address legislative concerns. New Jersey distilleries to discover include: Asbury Park Distilling Co. 527 Lake Avenue, Asbury Park apdistilling.com Cape May Distillery 371 NJ-47, Cape May Courthouse capemay-distillery.com



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Skunktown spirits are available locally at bars, restaurants, and liquor stores, and the distillery is open on Fridays and Saturdays for tours and tastings. A portion of all proceeds goes to the Wounded Warriors Project.

One of the newest distilleries in the state is Asbury Park Distilling Co., which opened on Memorial Day weekend. Asbury Park’s first distillery since prohibition, it is also the first in the state to be located in a commercial downtown area. It was founded by a group of six owners, including Zack Ohebshalom of Fort Lee, Rob Wile of Rumson, and Andrew Karas of Ridgewood. Asbury Park Distilling Co. features a sleek, modern tasting room with views right into the distillery with a custom-made copper still from Germany. Patrons can purchase spirits by the bottle or enjoy them in an artisanal cocktail. “It took three years to get going, but we have been given a warm reception,” said Ohebshalom. “This community is all about arts, music, and culture, and we are happy to be part of it.” “It’s beautiful to see people come here and share it with their friends,” continued Ohebshalom. “We offer full tours, and our master distiller Bill Tambussi is very passionate about distilling. He traveled to Scotland to earn his master’s degree from Henriot Watt University, which offers one of the most well-respected distilling programs in the world.” Ohebshalom said they currently feature gin and vodka, and will be releasing a bourbon in the fall, as well as a barrel-aged gin. He is not concerned about the seasonality of being located in a shore town, “It will be a destination spot in the winter, along with all the other great businesses that Asbury Park has to offer.” “It’s an exciting time in the state,” he said. “We hope to grow in the same trajectory as the other distilleries.”

Claremont Distillery 25 Commerce Road, Unit K, Fairfield claremontdistillery.com

Jersey Artisan Distilling 32C Pier Lane West, Fairfield jerseyartisandistilling.com

Cooper River Distillers 34 Fourth Street, Camden cooperriverdistillers.com

Jersey Cider Works 360 County Road 579, Asbury (Tasting Room under construction) jerseyciderworks.com

Corgi Spirits 1 Distillery Drive, Jersey City corgispirits.com

Jersey Shine Moonshine 20 Peterson Avenue, Millville drinkjerseyshine.com

Jersey Spirits Distilling Co. 1275 Bloomfield Avenue, Building 7, 40B, Fairfield jerseyspirits.com

Skunktown Distillery 12 Minneakoning Road, Suite 110B, Flemington skunktowndistillery.com

Lazy Eye Distillery 1328 Harding Highway, Richand 135 East Spicer Avenue, Wildwood www.lazyeyedistilling.com

Sourland Mountain Spirits 130 Hopewell-Rocky Hill Road, Hopewell sourlandspirits.com

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images courtesy of Asbury Park Distilling Co.

image courtesy of Sourland Mountain Spirits

Sourland Mountain Spirits

images courtesy of Skunktown Distillery

Asbury Park Distilling Co.

Skunktown Distillery

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De st in ati on:

Chatham & Madison BY Downtown Madison



ince the founding of the American colonies, Chatham and Madison have been key historic locations from the Revolutionary War. Chatham was even named after a member of British Parliament who advocated for colonist rights, while the later-formed Madison was named after founding father, Constitution writer, and fourth president James Madison. Since then, Madison and Chatham have stayed connected to their roots both in the arts and soul.

Museum of Early Trades & Crafts

HISTORIC ARTS AND CRAFTS Madison’s historic spirit shines in places like the Redtail Gallery, which features traditional, handmade Native American art from an array of tribes. Display cabinets are filled with Navajo turquoise jewelry, Hopi katsina dolls, and all manner of traditional masks and figurines. Each item is handpicked and carries a wealth of symbolism. For a look into Colonial America, Madison’s Museum of Early Trades & Crafts holds several sets of tools from the 1800s. Permanent exhibits display the tools of trades like distillers and coopers, while past exhibits delve into trades like burial, terra cotta industries, and the tools of the Lenni Lenape, the Native American tribe who inhabited Chatham and Madison for thousands of years. Even the building itself is worth seeing, built in 1899 to house the Madison Public Library.

With a focus on fresh food and a friendly atmosphere, Charley’s Aunt bar and grill captures the down-to-earth honesty of Chatham. Quaint and cozy, the doors open right before noon and close well after midnight, giving visitors plenty of time to enjoy a night out on the town before settling in. Charley’s Aunt has been around for decades, and they’ll likely be just as ready to serve a beer and a burger in decades to come. For a hearty assortment of Chatham-born drinks, the Twin Elephant Brewing Company is unparalleled. Handcrafted ales and lagers with names like Derby and the Moustache, Fuzzy Duckling, and Chuck’s Garage hint at the relaxed, homey atmosphere inside. Tours are free, counters are hardwood, and the beers are fresh.


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As evening rolls into in Madison and the streetlamps flicker to life, crowds funnel into The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey to see the latest performance of The Merchant of Venice or Molière’s The Bungler. If the air is warm, the cheers and cries from A Midsummer Night’s Dream might echo from their grass-and-stone amphitheater. Modeled after the Theatre of Dionysus in Athens, it is one of the only stages of its kind hosting a professional theatre company. On a good night, lowbacked beach chairs and picnickers circle the stage as lovers and fairies begin their performance. For anyone in Chatham looking to flex their muscles even after sundown, the Gravity Vault’s rock climbing center opens at noon and stays open well into the night at 10PM on weekdays. Housing over 13,500 square feet of climbable surface and a variety of wall types and difficulties, it can provide an interesting challenge to heat up a cool evening. Anyone in Madison looking to test their wits should investigate the two local escape rooms from Escape Room NJ—The Lost Cabin: Books of Souls, and King Arthur’s Castle: The Holy Grail. Players have an hour to work together, think creatively, and solve the slew of puzzles to make their way out before the timer runs out. Chatham and Madison aren’t the bubbling, high-traffic tourist traps some may find in other places. They’re handmade and thoughtful, where others are mass produced and breakneck. They’re honest, hearty boroughs, in touch with their history and a home for anyone.



Gravity Vault SEPTEMBER 2017

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Through NOVEMBER 18th

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Visit artcenternj.org or call 908.273.9121 to register today! 68 Elm Street | Summit NJ | 07901

Preschool - Grade Eight

Fall Fest & Open House UPCOMING EVENTS September 9 - Sustainability Fair

September 16 - CCB Flute Ensemble

September 23 - Apple Tasting

September 30 - Pet Adoption

October 7 - Chatham Brass Ensemble

October 14 - CCB Flute Ensemble

October 21 - Dance Innovations

October 28 - Halloween at the Market

November 11 - America Recycles Day

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8/22/17 2:52:56 PM

Elements Truffles Where Cacao Meets Yoga


Elements Truffles was born out of the idea that food can heal.



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Photography courtesy of Elements Truffles


ounder Alak Vasa was working on Wall Street, putting in long hours and filling her days sitting in a desk chair when she stumbled across a French patisserie close to her office. Going to the patisserie soon became a daily ritual. The beautiful desserts coupled with the elegant atmosphere made Vasa feel like she could “munch away her worries.” She began to wonder whether a career change and culinary school could be in her future. She decided to ask the chef at the French patisserie for his opinion on the matter. To Vasa’s surprise, the chef suggested that instead of paying for culinary school, she could work for him on Saturday mornings from 6 am to noon to experience what a real commercial kitchen is like. Vasa was delighted by the suggestion, so then every Saturday morning she worked in the kitchen where she learned the physically-tasking efforts that are involved in producing elaborate desserts. Motivated by her newfound passion for sweets, Vasa began working on Monday evenings as well. In October 2015, Vasa decided to launch her own project – Elements Truffles. Combining her knowledge of Ayurveda with chocolate, Elements Truffles uses the purest ingredients to create a line of handcrafted chocolates that are as healthful as they are delicious. The idea was to use locally-sourced honey as the only sweetener, which is difficult to do because honey is such a wet ingredient. Vasa figured out a way and began working with a honey farm in Central New Jersey to create her product. The kitchen,

located in Kearney Point, sources fair trade cacao from Peru, the purest essential oils, and Himalayan sea salt as its only ingredients. This means that each chocolate bar is GMO free, preservative free, dairy free, gluten free, and absent of all refined sugars. What’s left over is a sweet treat that parents can feel good about giving themselves and their children. Vasa points out that because the chocolate is sweetened only with local honey, there are no sugar crashes or mood swings that are typically associated with refined sweeteners. When asked to explain her familiarity with the science of Ayurveda, Vasa said, “It was something that I grew up with. It was part of the household. So, I was familiar with those concepts; specifically, the science of balancing the different elements in the body. This relates also to food – what you eat and what you put into your body.” Ayurveda provides guiding principles to help individuals find balance within themselves in terms of medicine, food, science, sleep, and self-awareness. Vasa applies this mind-body approach to the preparation of all of Elements Truffles’ products. She cites her meditation practice as being a major influence on her creative process, explaining, “I work in the kitchen every day, but before making anything, I meditate. I also play chanting music in the background, infusing the chocolates with positivity.” Some of the company’s flavors include orange pistachio bars and truffles with turmeric infusion; peppermint bars and truffles with lavender infusion; raspberry bars and truffles with beetroot

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infusion; rose bars and truffles with cardamom infusion; and a sea salt bar with turmeric infusion. Vasa is currently at work on a white chocolate line of bars. She also likes to create special flavors to correspond to certain holidays, such as her lemon coriander bar for Mother’s Day and a dark chocolate bar with cacao nibs and turmeric for Father’s Day. Although the company is still very young, it’s clear that this is a passion project for Vasa. Her products are currently sold on Amazon, her website at www.elementstruffles.com, and in over 100 stores nationwide, including many locations throughout New Jersey and New York City. The bars are the perfect addition to any back-to-school lunchbox since they are made, according to Vasa, with “ingredients your Grandma would recognize.” Also, 25 percent of all profits are donated to CareforChildren.org, which provides funds and services for children living in rural areas. In the near-term, Vasa hopes to add a line of hot chocolate powders and turmeric oils to Elements Truffles’ offerings. Whatever she chooses to work on in her kitchen, she promises to “stick to the flavor profiles inspired by my memories of growing up.” It is this approach to mindfulness and the creation of desserts that sets Elements Truffles apart.


2152 US Highway 206, Belle Mead NJ 08502 (908) 874-8383 48


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5. 1. Castle Valley Mill: Assorted stone ground flours and meals, popcorn, whole grains, and germ-in pasta. Made from grains grown by local farmers, meticulously cleaned and milled on restored 1800s machinery. Always natural and non-GMO. 215.340-3609; castlevalleymill.com 2. Pickle Licious: A local, family-owned business in Teaneck known for its kosher dill pickles, half sour pickles, sweet pickle chips, olives, tapenades, relishes, and much more. 201.833.0100; picklelicious.com

3. Romeo’s: An authentic Italian-style marinara sauce, sold exclusively at Wegmans. 908.947.8884; romeosfinefoods.com 4. Ironbound Hard Cider: Made from 100 percent fresh-pressed American apples, not from concentrate, with no added sugar or preservatives. Naturally gluten free. 908.940.4115; jerseyciderworks.com


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8/23/17 10:04:50 AM

Each 419-foot main span tower is connected to 24 stay cables.

ngineering ENew York by ilene dube

The Brooklyn Bridge, an engineering marvel of its era, is considered a work of art, one that has inspired other artists from Georgia O’Keeffe to Red Grooms. As the replacement for New York’s Tappan Zee Bridge nears completion, observers can see that it, too, is soaring with beauty and grace. 50


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he look of the bridge was important,” Project Director The bridge is the first crossing to be built in the New York area on such Jamey Barbas said to her alma mater, Columbia a colossal scale since the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge linked Brooklyn to University’s School of Engineering Staten Island in 1964, and is the largest bridge project in New York and Applied Sciences. “We knew we state history. In addition to its hefty price tag, the bridge made wanted to have a signature structure.” news a year ago when one of its cranes collapsed. In what was As a native New Yorker, Barbas had termed a miracle, no lives were lost. Sadly such miracles were a personal interest in creating an not available during construction of the Brooklyn, Verrazanoinstantly recognizable icon. Narrows, and original Tappan Zee bridges, when 20, three, and Costing $3.98 billion, the Gov. Mario M. Cuomo Bridge one person, respectively, perished. is named for the three-term 52nd governor of New York, The first span is scheduled to open in late summer/early fall, who happens to be the father of Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo. and the new bridge is on schedule to fully open to traffic in It was Andrew who set the project in motion, saying at 2018, says New NY Bridge Project Director of Communications the time that, after 10 years of delays, it was a sign that Khurram Saeed. Still to come: A one-and-a-half-inch coating government can still get things done. The elder Cuomo of state-of-the-art asphalt, LED lighting poles, digital died in 2015, knowing the project was well underway. message signs, and stainless steel fencing to deter jumpers. The bridge is expected to be completed in 2018. Saeed points out that 220 million pounds of American steel The first time Andrew Cuomo, a native of Queens, is being used to build the new bridge. N.Y., heard his father use expletives, he recalled to The The Tappan Zee is the longest and most complex New York Times, was on a bridge, although not the crossing in the New York State Thruway system, serving Tappan Zee but the frequently congested Kosciuszko, as a vital artery for residents, commuters, travelers, and itself undergoing replacement. commercial traffic. The name Tappan Zee combines a “The [Gov. Mario M. Cuomo Bridge] will replace a reference to the Tappan tribe of indigenous Americans, critical piece of our crumbling infrastructure, create and the Dutch word for sea. Opened in 1955, it was thousands of jobs for New Yorkers, and help continue designed to support 100,000 vehicles a day, but current Project Director Jamey Barbas an economic resurgence across Westchester, Rockland, traffic exceeds 140,000 a day. and the Hudson Valley region,” the governor said when construction In addition, narrow lanes and the lack of emergency shoulders create began in 2013. unsafe driving conditions and, as a result, the bridge has twice the average

The eastbound main span will soon connect to the Westchester approach.

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8/24/17 10:40:32 AM



A mobile batch plant provides concrete directly on the main span.

The project team unites to kick off Safety Week on May 1, 2017.

accident rate per mile as the rest of the 570-mile New York Thruway system, according to the website of the New York State Thruway Authority, which owns the bridge. Hundreds of millions of dollars have been spent to maintain the structure, and it is estimated that the cost of maintaining the Tappan Zee rivaled the cost of a new bridge, while offering no improvements to current traffic conditions. Plans for a new bridge to replace the Tappan Zee were first discussed in 1999, and over the following decade, $88 million taxpayer dollars were spent, 430 meetings were held, and 150 concepts were considered—yet still, the project did not move forward. Under Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s leadership and with the support of President Obama and the U.S. A Peregrine falcon— Department of Transportation, the project the fastest member of moved from dysfunction to construction. the animal kingdom. “This community has been waiting for a new bridge to replace the Tappan Zee for more than 20 years,” said Chief Operating Engineer Christopher Horton, who was born, raised, and continues to live in the Peekskill/Mt. Kisco area. “Governor Cuomo and President Obama were able to accomplish more in three-and-a-half years than anyone else in the last two decades, breaking through the gridlock to give a renewed sense of pride to the community.” He calls it more than building a bridge, but a monument to the state’s innovation and the

nation’s determination. The new bridge is designed to last 100 years before requiring major structural maintenance. To satisfy Cuomo’s requirement that the bridge be aesthetically pleasing, artist Jeff Koons and architect Richard Meier, among others, served on the design panel. Not only is the bridge a work of beauty, but the views from it are among the most magnificent in the world. Its environmental impact is intended to be minimized; the new bridge incorporates a bubble curtain to absorb sound-pressure waves that might otherwise kill Atlantic sturgeon and other fish. In consideration of the rich and diverse wildlife that make the region its home, the bridge team has used equipment requiring less dredging, smaller pilings, use of clean fuel technology, and also sought to minimize construction noise. Tappan Zee Constructors has installed environmental monitoring stations at various locations to continuously measure noise, air quality, and vibration levels. Peregrine falcons—the fastest members of the animal kingdom—nest in a human-made box atop the Tappan Zee. The high vantage point allows the endangered birds the ability to scour and dive for prey. Monitored by the New York State Thruway Authority, the nest box will be moved to the towers of the new bridge. Falcons generally establish a nest in February


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Work continues on the eastbound main span.


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The project team tests the westbound bridge's aesthetic lighting system.

"Painters Point" - The third of six belvederes, across the pedestrian and bike path. Its design accentuates arts and culture in the Hudson Valley.

“River Crossing” - The fourth of six belvederes, across the pedestrian and bike path. Its design highlights transportation and communication.

to raise their young before migrating south in the fall. A webcam allows viewers to observe the migratory falcons incubating eggs, feeding their young, and defending their nest (NewNYBridge.com/falcon-camera). Although a single bridge, there are two parallel crossings, taking vehicles in each direction between Westchester and Rockland counties. With one span now operational, another crossing 87 feet wide will open next year, with four lanes in each direction as well as a separate bicycle and pedestrian path. There will be transparent noise panels at either end of the path. The cable-stayed bridge will ultimately offer eight 12-foot vehicular lanes and have six belvederes for pedestrians and cyclists, each with specially-designed seating, shade structures, and interpretive panels on Hudson River history. A cable-stayed bridge is one in which the cables “stay” the bridge in place, by connecting from the edge of the deck to the angled towers to better distribute the structural load. The Gov. Mario M. Cuomo Bridge is the widest cable-stayed structure of its kind in the world, and will include state-of-the-art traffic monitoring systems as well as enhanced express bus service. Mass-transit ready, the new crossing will be able to accommodate bus rapid transit, light rail, or commuter rail. Building such an enormous structure would not be possible without the I Lift NY crane. The floating crane has a lifting arm that is taller than a 30-story building and is capable of lifting the equivalent of 12 Statues of Liberty at once. It enables pre-fabrication of huge sections of the bridge off site, saving both time and money as well as enhancing project safety and quality. The super crane previously worked on the San FranciscoOakland Bay Bridge project.

What will become of the old Tappan Zee? It will not transform into another elevated park, like the High Line or the Walkway Over the Hudson, further up, converted from an old railroad bridge, but will be carefully dismantled using the I Lift NY super crane. It is in the way of the second span, and once traffic has shifted to the first of the twin spans, the Tappan Zee will come down. But the structure’s elements will live on, according to Saeed. The steel and concrete deck panels will be repurposed or recycled. Its 133 deck panel units and moveable barriers will be transferred to state and local municipalities. “The transfer of these materials will save local municipalities millions of dollars which will help important infrastructure projects move forward with a much lower cost to local counties and towns,” says NYSTA Acting Executive Director Bill Finch. Eight municipalities and the New York State Department of Transportation have requested the transfer of deck panels, which can facilitate future infrastructure projects. Including removal and delivery, the deck panel units have an estimated value of almost $3 million. The toll for the Gov. Mario M. Cuomo Bridge will remain at $5 cash, or $4.75 E-ZPass through 2020, according to Saeed. After a season that was termed “Summer of Hell” because of stalled infrastructure improvements at Penn Station, the Gov. Mario M. Cuomo Bridge is a bright spot.

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8/15/17 10:53:34 AM

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