Montclair Family Displaced By Fire In Need of a Home For Christmas

BY  |  Friday, Dec 19, 2014 1:30pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

The Quince Children

The Quince Children

Despite the great efforts of the Montclair Fire Department to contain and relinquish the fire at the multi-family home at 146 Forest Avenue on Tuesday, December 16 — all with no injuries to residents or firefighters — Melissa Quince and her seven children (ages 6 – 16) are now in need of a home.

Neighbor Alan Smith, lead singer of The Porchistas, immediately started helping the Quince family by collecting clothing and donations for the displaced family. The outpouring of generosity had been amazing, but the biggest need is for Quince to find an apartment for her family, and with a family of eight, it is a difficult task.

“We’re having a really hard time finding an apartment in Montclair that would take all of us in and I’m trying so hard to make sure we have somewhere to live before Christmas,” Quince told Baristanet. “I’m hoping for a true Christmas miracle.”

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Baristanet Profile: Ken Dowell

BY  |  Friday, Dec 19, 2014 12:00pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

Ken Dowel

The latest installment of our Baristanet Profile series, where we get to know the people in our neighborhood:

Name: Ken Dowell

Where do you live? Montclair

When did you move there? In 2006 from Jersey City

Where did you grow up? Born in Paterson and grew up in Totowa

How do you make a living? Retired last year from a news release distribution company where I had worked for 35+ years most recently developing new products and building Web and social media audiences.

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Atelier $27 Fashion Show Friday

BY  |  Thursday, Dec 18, 2014 10:30am  |  COMMENTS (0)


Atelier is hosting a special $27 Fashion Show tomorrow night, Friday, December 19 from 7 – 8 pm. That’s right, all items in the show are only $27! Atelier wants you to see just how FABULOUS $27 can look.

There will be sample sale pieces, accessories and end of the season items. Fashion show begins promptly at 7 pm.

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The Weekend: Films, Parties, Music, and More

BY  |  Thursday, Dec 18, 2014 9:00am  |  COMMENTS (1)


Many great events to enjoy this weekend. We told you about:

And there’s more! Here are your weekend highlights:

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Baristanet Guide to Gifting Local: Week Five

BY  |  Wednesday, Dec 17, 2014 12:30pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

Baristanet Guide to Gifting Local

Continuing on with more local items on locals’ holiday wish lists, here is our Baristanet Guide to Gifting Local: Week Five.

We hope these gift ideas inspire you!

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Bloomfield Council Meeting: Honors Football Team, Six Points intersection, And More (Updated)

BY  |  Wednesday, Dec 17, 2014 10:30am  |  COMMENTS (1)


The Bloomfield Mayor and Council issued a proclamation honoring the members and coaches of the Bloomfield 7th Grade Junior Bengals B Squad at Monday’s council meeting.

The team and coaches were recognized for their achievement in advancing to the Super Bowl of the New Jersey Suburban Youth Football League after beating Chatham 19-18 in a playoff game.

The Mayor and Council also recognized the United Way of Bloomfield for over 55 years of service and urged community support for the organization.

The Council met in back-to-back meetings on Monday night. A conference meeting was held at 6 p.m. in the 2nd floor conference room in the Law Enforcement Building, followed by the regular meeting held in Council Chambers at 7:30.

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A Feast of Fish For Christmas Eve

BY  |  Tuesday, Dec 16, 2014 12:00pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

feast of the seven fishes

For Southern Italians and Italian-Americans, Christmas Eve is celebrated with a feast — Feast of the Seven Fishes. The special meal typically consists of seven (for the seven sacraments) different seafood dishes and is believed to have originated in Southern Italy, where it is known as The Vigil (La Vigilia). The tradition of eating seafood on Christmas Eve dates from the Roman Catholic tradition of abstaining from eating meat or milk products on Fridays, and on the day before Holy days like Christmas.

The number of fish seems to be more of an Italian-American thing according to Montclair resident Sara Villa, who grew up in Genoa, but has a mother from Naples in the south:

“For us it’s not really the seven fishes but we do have a dinner with just fish; fish salad (octopus, crab meat, shrimps and calamari, pasta with clams or mussels and maybe some baked Branzino.”

Tessa Aniello Vining of Montclair, whose family hails from Sicily and other parts of southern Italy, says there is no set number of dishes, but the meal is “a mix of a lot of different things like eel, shrimp, cod, calamari, anchovies, etc.”

Cathy Turiano Patullo of Montclair has in-laws from Boiano, near Naples, a mom from the Marche region, and a dad from Calabria — so you can be sure they feast on fishes on Christmas Eve! Patullo says you can have seven fish for the seven sacraments, 13 fish for the apostles and Jesus, or three for the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. “My in-laws just make lots of fish!”

For others, seven is the tradition. Ashley DiGeronimo of Montclair spends Christmas Eve with her husband’s family who hail from Calabria in the south. Their feast has seven fishes.

For Italian-American Justin Mannato of Montclair, seven is the number and keeping the tradition is important. He wrote about the significance here on his blog years ago.

No matter how many fishes you eat on Christmas Eve, you can enjoy a Feast of the Seven Fishes at these local restaurants or enjoy it at home with the help of these markets:


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Montclair Public Library to Launch Open Book / Open Mind: Conversations with Prominent Authors and Public Figures

BY  |  Tuesday, Dec 16, 2014 9:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)

Open Book / Open Mind

In January 2015, the Montclair Public Library and its Foundation will launch Open Book / Open Mind, a new series of conversations with prominent authors and public figures.

Each event will be a conversation among authors, experts and the audience rather than simply a reading or lecture. Audience members will participate through Q&A and no admission will be charged. Watchung Booksellers will sell signed copies of speakers’ books at these events, and copies will be available in the store so people can read in advance.

“In this digital age, libraries provide real, physical space where people can come together and share ideas. Libraries offer learning to everyone,” says David Hinkley, Director of the Montclair Public Library.

“That’s why these events are free and open-to-the public. I want to thank the authors who have made it possible for us to keep these programs accessible to all. And special thanks go to Margot Sage-El, owner of Watchung Booksellers, who is helping the library and its foundation curate the series,” adds Hinkley.

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Ring in 2015 at One of These Local New Year’s Eve Parties (Updated)

BY  |  Monday, Dec 15, 2014 12:00pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

New Year's Eve

Want to enjoy fine dining, drinks, dancing and festivity on New Year’s Eve?

Here are some ways to ring in 2015:

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Showing Love to the Montclair Public Library: My First Chapter

BY  |  Monday, Dec 15, 2014 10:30am  |  COMMENTS (0)

Don KatzThis essay is part of the Montclair Public Library Foundation’s third annual “My First Chapter” series. These essays are in support of the Montclair Public Library. This installment, which first appeared in the Montclair Times and is reprinted here with permission, is from Don Katz, a former Montclair Public Library board member, author and the founder & CEO of

Like others of my generation, I maintain warm, if sepia-tinged, memories of Saturdays at the public library of my 1950s and 1960s middle-class youth. I learned the vagaries of the Dewey Decimal System back then, just as I learned basic Spanish. Some years later, I was lucky enough to read and write, surrounded by piles of books and elevated by the power of intellectual history, in vaulted, cathedral-like public reading rooms in the British Museum and the Main Branch of the New York Public Library.

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Featured Comment

I will really miss their store. It was always so easy and fun to find a fun gift there. Walking into their store made me feel like I was transported into a faraway happy place!

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