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Saturday, February 28, 2015

Photo of the Day 2/28/15


This photo was taken at Underhill Field in Maplewood.

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Friday, February 27, 2015

Photo of the Day 2/27/15


This photo was taken in South Orange during a recent snowfall.

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Thursday, February 26, 2015

Climb One Gateway Center to Raise Funds for American Lung Association


On Saturday, March 28, the American Lung Association of the Mid-Atlantic will present the Fight for Air Climb at One Gateway Center in Downtown Newark. The event will raise funds for the association's efforts to prevent lung disease and to improve lung health. Participants will climb 26 flights of stairs. The registration fee is $25 and the minimum fundraising amount is $100. Registration will begin at 7:00am, and the first wave will start at 8:30am. The climb will be followed by an after-party at the neighboring Hilton Newark Penn Station Hotel. According to the American Lung Association, waves will be assigned one week before the date of the event. Those who register will receive a free week of membership to a New York Sports Clubs location, and the first 100 participants to register will receive free garage parking for the climb. The event is sponsored by Advance Realty.

Click here to learn more.



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Photo of the Day 2/26/15


This photo shows a bridge in South Mountain Reservation, near Hemlock Falls, in Maplewood.

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Wednesday, February 25, 2015

SOLO(s) Project House to Host Sculpture Workshop


The SOLO(s) Project House in Newark will host 'InBetween | A Sculpture Social' on Saturday, February 28 from 3:00pm to 5:00pm. According to SOLO(s), "InBetween explores a series of quick, responsive, and fun exercises that explore the idea collaboration and being between here and there". Participants will create quick and small sculptures using non-toxic materials. Participants should bring materials such as fabric, foam, and paint. InBetween will introduce the residency of Lee Hunter and Crystal Gregory called 'HERE WHETHER THERE'. Admission is free, and refreshments will be served. Click here to register. SOLO(s) Project House is located at 972 Broad Street between Walnut and East Kinney Streets.

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Photos of the Day 2/25/15


These photos were taken near the top of Hemlock Falls in South Mountain Reservation.



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Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Photo of the Day 2/24/15


This building, which dates to 1904, is located at the bottom of the East Orange Water Commission's underground reservoir in Maplewood. EOWC serves East Orange and South Orange residents.

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Monday, February 23, 2015

Photo of the Day 2/23/15


This photo shows a frozen Hemlock Falls at South Mountain Reservation in Maplewood.

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Sunday, February 22, 2015

Photo of the Day 2/22/15


This photo shows an Essex County manhole cover on South Wyoming Avenue in South Orange.

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Saturday, February 21, 2015

Photo of the Day 2/21/15


This photo shows the view of Western Essex County and Parsippany, Morris County from Caldwell.

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Friday, February 20, 2015

Opening Reception in Newark Tonight for 'Activate: Market Street 5' and 'Pebble Drinkers'


An opening reception will take place tonight for 'Activate: Market Street 5', a program to put artwork in vacant storefronts in Downtown Newark, such as the former Bushberg Brothers Furniture Store. Artwork will be activated at nighttime, and will deliver "arresting, unexpected, and highly memorable experiences with contemporary art directly to the public". Artwork will include Sunil Garg's 'A Comfortable Illusion of Order' at 75 Market Street, Robert Lach's 'A Forest' at 77 Market Street, and Josama's 'Loss of Innocence' at 85 Market Street.

Gallery Aferro, 73 Market Street, will host the reception from 7:00pm to 10:00pm. In addition, 'Pebble Drinkers', a temporary exhibition in Gallery Aferro's main gallery, will debut tonight. The exhibit will be open for viewing until March 28. Participating artists include Jesse Harrod, Greg Stewart, Stephanie Williams, Piper Grosswendt, Becca Kallem, Rachelle Beaudoin, Brittany De Nigris, Corwin Levi and A.V. Ryan.

Activate: Market Street is presented by Gallery Aferro and RBH Group. The artwork will remain on Market Street until May 2.

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File Photo of Market Street on Dec. 26, 2014

Photo of the Day 2/20/15


This photo shows the Rutgers-Newark and Montclair State University campuses as seen from the former National State Bank building in Downtown Newark. 

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Thursday, February 19, 2015

See Live Raptors in Maplewood This Weekend


The Durand-Hedden House and Garden in Maplewood will sponsor 'Close Encounters with Birds of Prey' this Sunday at Jefferson Elementary School at 1:30pm. Bill Streeter, the director of the Delaware Valley Raptor Center in Pike County, Pennsylvania, will teach attendees about the raptors of the Northeastern United States, and will bring six live raptors. Following the presentation, the Durand-Hedden House, which is located just across Ridgewood Road, will be open to visitors. Refreshments will be served, and the country store will be open. Plus, an exhibit on the history of the movie theater in Maplewood Village will be open for viewing. 

Jefferson Elementary School is located at 518 Ridgewood Road. The Virginia Road door to the school will open at 1:00pm. Admission is free.

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Newark Flea Market to Celebrate Black History Month


The Newark Flea Market will celebrate Black History Month with a neighborhood luncheon and more on Saturday, February 28. The events will begin at 12:30pm with a free lunch, sponsored by the Newark Flea Market's 30 vendors. Then, a panel moderated by Dr. JahJah Shakur will discuss the #SupportLocal movement, and how to create a thriving black business culture in the city. At 3:30pm, the first annual Newark Black Poets Review will begin. Poets will include Mia X, The Royal Hijack, Se'Lah The Author, Mary Jane, Tigga Rai, and Mystic. The Black Poets Review will be presented by The Brickerati Group. To RSVP, call (973) 223-8766 and ask for Sigh.

The market will be open throughout the afternoon.

Newark Flea Market is located at 230 North 11th Street between 6th and Park Avenues. New Jersey Transit bus transportation is available using the 41 bus and exiting at North 11th Street.

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Photo of the Day 2/19/15


This photo shows Joseph Vallone, a former plant manager for Annin Flags, speaking to West Caldwell Library patrons last week about the history of the former Annin plant in Verona. 

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Wednesday, February 18, 2015

UPDATED: CHS Teacher Nicole Dufault Indicted for Allegedly Sexually Assaulting Six Students


Original Post from 2/17: The Essex County Prosecutor's Office has announced that Columbia High School language arts teacher Nicole Dufault has been indicted on dozens of charges regarding alleged sexual assaults of six students. Dufault, a 35 year old Caldwell resident, was arrested in September on charges of sexually assaulting three students at the Maplewood school. Two days later, the Essex County Prosecutor's Office announced that two additional alleged victims had come forward. Today, Acting Prosecutor Carolyn A. Murray announced that a sixth alleged victim was identified.

According to a press release, "the indictment accuses Dufault of engaging in sexual activity with all six boys on multiple occasions between 2013 and 2014". 

The alleged victims were 14 and 15 years old at the time of the incidents.

Dufault was indicted on 40 counts of aggravated sexual assault and endangering the welfare of a child. The alleged sexual assaults took place on Columbia High School grounds and in Dufault's vehicle. Dufault's classroom, B238, was closed off in the days after her arrest, and several unmarked police cars were present at the school on the morning after her arrest. At the time of her arrest, Dufault had taught at Columbia for nine years.

A video allegedly shows Dufault having sex with a student in her car. Several Columbia High School students reportedly viewed the video in the days surrounding Dufault's arrest, causing one staff member to warn her class that sharing the video of the alleged incident could constitute sending child pornography.

Dufault was held in the Essex County Correctional Facility in Newark for over a month before posting $500,000 bail. She entered a plea of 'not guilty' in September, and is now scheduled to appear in Superior Court in Newark on March 6.

Dufault is considered innocent until proven guilty. She faces decades in state prison if convicted on all counts.

Update 2/18: In an email to Essex County Place, Dufault's attorney, Timothy Smith, said "I feel extremely confident in stating, and firmly believe, that there is only one victim, not six, as averred in the indictment, and that victim is Nicole Dufault". Officials with the South Orange Maplewood School District and the South Orange Maplewood Education Association union did not respond to requests for comment.

Above: There was a large police presence at Columbia High School following Dufault's arrest.

Above: This lot on Parker Avenue was reportedly Dufault's assigned parking lot during the 2013-14 school year.

Above: This is Dufault's condominium in Caldwell. Authorities searched the condominium following Dufault's arrest.

This story will be updated.

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Top photo credit County of Essex. All other photos credit PlaceNJ.com.

Several Events Coming Soon to the Greater Newark Conservancy


This Saturday, February 21, the Greater Newark Conservancy (GNC) will hold the fourth annual Beds and Breakfast program, a community garden and urban farming seminar. Those who sign up to participate will take part in hands-on demonstration and learn more about gardening and farming. Plus, attendees will learn about how to make a neighborhood community garden. The event will take place between 9:00am and 2:00pm. The fee is $30 and preregistration is required. 

On Saturday, February 28, GNC will sponsor a trip to the first day of the 2015 Philadelphia Flower Show at the Pennsylvania Convention Center. The Flower Show is produced by the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, and is one of the largest annual flower shows in the United States. The theme for this year's show is "Lights, Camera, BLOOM!". Vans will leave from the GNC offices at 9:00am and will return from Philadelphia at 5:00pm. Tickets will cost $35 for adults, $25 for students, and $20 for children. The ticket price includes van transportation and show admission.

To register for both events, call the Greater Newark Conservancy at (973) 642-4646. The GNC is located in the former Oheb Shalom Congregation at 32 Prince Street in Newark between Springfield and South Orange Avenues.

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Essex Fells Garden Club to Hold Lecture


The Garden Club of Essex Fells will hold a presentation for borough residents called 'Caring for our Trees' on Saturday, February 28 at 11:00am. The event will take place in the Essex Fells School Auditorium. According to the borough, speaker Stacie Phelps, a ISA Certified Arborist with Mountainside based SavATree, will discuss the criteria to look for when selecting a professional tree or lawn care service, seasonal care of trees and shrubs, and issues with common landscape plants. A question and answer session in the gymnasium will follow the lecture. Refreshments will be served.

The Essex Fells School is located at 102 Hawthorne Road

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Photo of the Day 2/18/15


This photo shows a snow covered Underhill Field in Maplewood.

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Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Upcoming Events: Take a Bird Walk (or Four) in Montclair


The Van Vleck House and Gardens in Montclair will host a series of guided birding hikes on Saturdays in the next few months.

On February 21, participants will search for birds that spend winter in New Jersey, and will learn how they survive through the cold months. On March 21, the topic will shift to migrating birds, including birds that use the Montclair area as a resting place while flying North. Mating among birds will be discussed on April 11, and nesting will be the topic on May 30.

Van Vleck is located at 21 Van Vleck Street between North Mountain and Upper Mountain Avenues. Each tour will cost $5 for Friends and $7 for the general public. Those interested in attending all four tours can pay a discounted rate of $20, or $15 for Friends. To register, call (973) 744-4752 or email education@vanvleck.com.

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Upcoming Event: GCBMA to Sponsor Presidential Beer Tasting

File:Cleveland Birthplace in Caldwell Borough.JPG

The Grover Cleveland Birthplace Memorial Association will sponsor a presidential beer tasting on Saturday, February 21 from 6:00pm to 9:00pm in honor of Presidents' Day. The beer tasting will take place at Cricket Hill Brewery, located at 24 Kulick Road in Fairfield. Attendees can test their knowledge of presidential trivia and taste several of Cricket Hill's beers while raising funds for the association.

Advanced registration is required in order to guarantee a spot. To sign up, call (973) 226-8438 or send an email to gcbmainc@gmail.com. Click here for a registration form. The cost of the event is $35 for the general public and $25 for members.

The GCBMA is the Friends group of the Caldwell house where President Grover Cleveland lived until he was four years old. The house is open Wednesday through Sunday for self guided tours.

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Photo of the Day 2/17/15


This photo shows businesses on South Orange Avenue in South Orange with the First Watchung Mountain in the background.

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Monday, February 16, 2015

Upcoming Event: Learn More About Washington Heights at Rutgers-Newark


The John Cotton Dana Library at Rutgers-Newark will host a program on Wednesday, February 18 at 5:00pm called 'New York's Bittersweet Recovery from the Urban Crisis' with Rutgers-Newark American Studies Director Robert W. Snyder and Joseph C. Cornwall Center for Metropolitan Studies Director Roland V. Anglin. 

Anglin and Snyder will discuss how New York City has emerged from an era of crime and urban decay. Specifically, Snyder's book, Crossing Broadway, will be discussed. The book explores the revival of Upper Manhattan's Washington Heights neighborhood, and how the Dominican population has skyrocketed there.

The Dana Library is located at 185 University Avenue near Bleeker Street. The program will take place in Room 404 of the fourth floor, and will be presented by the Joseph C. Cornwall Center for Metropolitan Studies. Refreshments will be served. Click here to register for this free event.

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Gateway Project to Hold Open House on Wednesday


The Gateway Project Studios and Gallery in Newark's Gateway Center will hold a free open house on Wednesday, February 18 from 4pm to 6pm. 

Visitors to the open house can take a tour of the art studios and attend an information session. The studios are each 250 to 500 square feet and will be ready for occupancy by artists in March. 

The gallery at the Gateway Project is already being used for regular pop-up exhibitions. A exhibit called 'PROLOGUE - EPILOGUE' was open the the public in October and November, 2014. In addition, the surrounding concourse was used from July, 2014 until January for an exhibit called 'Emerald City'. 

The Gateway Project is located inside of 2 Gateway Center. It can be accessed using the indoor pedestrian walkway, which connects all Gateway Center buildings with Newark Penn Station. There is an additional entrance to the building at the intersection of McCarter Highway (Route 21) and Market Street. Parking is available in surrounding garages. 

Click here to register.


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Photo of the Day 2/16/15



This photo shows the former Maplewood Bank and Trust Company headquarters on Maplewood Avenue, which was established in 1921. The building is now a Bank of America branch.

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Sunday, February 15, 2015

Photo of the Day 2/15/15


This photo was taken on South Orange Avenue in South Orange.

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Saturday, February 14, 2015

Photo of the Day 2/14/15


This photo was taken at Grove Park in South Orange.

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Friday, February 13, 2015

Photo of the Day 2/13/15


This photo shows the NASH 94.7 FM Broadcast Center and Ridge Road in West Orange as seen from South Orange.

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Thursday, February 12, 2015

Photo of the Day 2/12/15


This photo shows the Marshall Elementary School in South Orange.

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Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Family Support Organization to Hold PARCC Presentation in East Orange


Next month, public school students in grades 3 through 11 across New Jersey will take an exam from the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, or PARCC. In order for parents to learn more about the exam, the Family Support Organization of Essex County will host a special presentation tomorrow, Thursday, February 12, from 6:30pm to 8:00pm. The presentation will take place at the Family Support Organization office, located at Suite 410 of 60 Evergreen Place in East Orange. To learn more, contact Nancy Cole by calling 973-395-1441 or by sending an email to colen@fsoec.org.

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Photos of the Day 2/11/15: Signs in Maplewood


These photos show signs that greet visitors to Maplewood at the corner of Valley Street and Millburn Avenue. Vintage signs provide directions to two of Maplewood's business districts.



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Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Photo of the Day 2/10/15


This photo shows the Maplewood Municipal Building as seen from Crest Drive in South Mountain Reservation.

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Monday, February 9, 2015

Photo of the Day 2/9/15


This photo shows Ridgewood Row in Maplewood.

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Sunday, February 8, 2015

Photo of the Day 2/8/15


This photo was taken at Washington Park in Newark.

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Saturday, February 7, 2015

Photo of the Day 2/7/15


This photo shows the steeple of the Old First Church in Newark.

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Friday, February 6, 2015

TJ's Shoes Moves, Reopens as Seton Village Boutique


A South Orange business has moved from Downtown to Irvington Avenue. Seton Village Boutique opened last week at 301 Irvington Avenue, between Fairview Avenue and Ward Place. The store was formerly located next to Spiotta Park on Village Plaza, and was known as TJ's Shoes.

Owner Katrina Taylor told Essex County Place that she chose to call the store Seton Village Boutique to "honor the new neighborhood name". The Irvington Avenue Corridor Advisory Committee branded the business district as Seton Village in December. The area is two blocks away from the Seton Hall University campus.

Seton Village Boutique sells a variety of merchandise, including handbags, jewelry, clothing, and soaps.

The store replaces consignment store 2 Great Kids, which is moving to the former home of Sparkhouse Toys on Scotland Road. Sparkhouse is in the process of moving to the former location of TJ's Shoes.

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Photo of the Day 2/6/15


This photo shows Newark's City Hall and Broad Street as seen from the Hotel Indigo Skylab. The Union County Courthouse in Elizabeth can be seen in the distance.

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Thursday, February 5, 2015

Photo of the Day 2/5/15


This photo shows Village Hall in South Orange.

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Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Update: Lockdown Concluded at Columbia High School


Updated 5:15pm: The Maplewood Police Department has issued a press release regarding the code red lockdown at Columbia High School today. According to the release, the MPD received an automated message that the lockdown alarm was activated at CHS at approximately 10:35am. Upon arrival, officers were "advised by school staff that they had no knowledge as to why the alarm was activated". Subsequently, "officers conducted a search for an active threat, (however) no active threat was located". As was reported earlier, several classrooms in the 'A wing' of CHS were not checked by officers following the lockdown. In response, the release from the MPD notes that "the incident is presently under review".

-

Update 3:20pm: In an announcement to students, CHS Principal Elizabeth Aaron said that the lockdown was "related to an incident that involved technology". South Orange Maplewood School District Acting Superintendent James Memoli said in an email to parents that the lockdown was caused by "technical work being done on system lines", and that the Maplewood Police Department assured officials that "there was not a threat to student or staff safety at any time".

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Original Post: Columbia High School (CHS) in Maplewood was under code red lockdown this morning. An alarm was activated at approximately 10:37am during period 4. Students were released from the lockdown shortly before 12:00pm during period 5.

CHS Principal Elizabeth Aaron, Assistant Principals Cheryline Hewitt and Michael Healy, and Guidance Department Supervisor Jennifer Giordano made several announcements to students and staff members during the lockdown.

"There is no threat to anyone's safety", Healy announced. "We appreciate your patience", he added.

Aaron informed students that officers from the Maplewood Police Department would check every classroom before anyone was released. However, multiple classrooms in the 'A wing' of the school were not inspected by officers. There was a large police presence outside of the school during the lockdown.

In an email to parents during the lockdown, Acting Superintendant James Memoli said that "all students (were) safely sheltered".

The reason for the lockdown has not yet been released.

CHS was also under code red lockdown in November, after a student allegedly brought brass knuckles inside the building. In the 2013-14 school year, the code red alarm was accidentally set off by a maintenance contractor, causing the school to be under lockdown until 3:30pm. The alarms were installed in 2013.

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File Photo of CHS

Photo of the Day 2/4/15


This photo shows the Old Stone House in South Orange, part of which dates to 1680. It is the oldest building in Essex County.

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Newark Students to Take Trip to Europe


Five public school students in Newark were selected to take part in a trip to London, England during Spring Break next month. Trip organizer Madeline Boughton told Essex County Place that the students include Rutgers Future Scholars, honor roll students and student-athletes. The trip will come at no cost to the students, and will be partially paid by donors who participated in a online crowdfunding campaign.

Students will visit several attractions in the United Kingdom, including the Wroxton College of Teaneck-based Fairleigh Dickinson University, Parliament, William Shakespeare's Birthplace in Stratford-upon-Avon, and Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire.

According to Boughton, an essay contest was announced, and students with the best submissions were interviewed. Five of the interviewees were selected to participate. The students come from four different high schools in the city, and meet monthly to discuss logistics for the trip.

"I hope that this trip will inspire others to educate youth on the benefits and importance of traveling abroad", said Boughton. "Studying abroad at Wroxton was my best college experience. I want to share some of that experience with Newark youth as opposed to just talking about it", she added.

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Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Photo of the Day 2/3/15


This photo shows the view of Newark and the First Watchung Mountain from the Hotel Indigo Skylab.

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