One Big Error and Lots of Praise

Wednesday, Jun 30, 2004 11:22pm  |  COMMENTS (1)

It seems astounding to us, but the reason the Montclair Town Council couldn’t go forward tonight with its second reading and public hearing on the ordinance to declare the Marlboro Inn a historic landmark was because somebody forget to send notices to the homeowners within 200 feet of the inn. Turns out the whole thing was not strictly legal so they had to start from scratch.
That doesn’t seem to be the only snafu. Outgoing mayor Robert Russo said he showed up for a planning board meeting on Monday night only to find a sign saying that it had been cancelled.
The Barista passed up a chance to attend the Yankees-Boston game tonight in order to go hear all the ruckus on the Marlboro Inn. But was there ruckus? Noooooooo. The only people who spoke came to praise the outgoing members of the town council.
And the Yankees won, too.
The new council will be sworn in Thursday at noon, which is when the new Marlboro Inn ordinance will be read. The new public hearing will be July 13.
We caught up with incoming the incoming mayor, Ed Remsen, at the firehouse dedication earlier and asked about the little mistake. After all, it seems like there’s a race for time, as developer Steven Plofker has applied to demolish the inn. Now, it’s two more weeks before an ordinance could be passed. Not to worry, Remsen said. Apparently, Plofker has so many hoops to jump through before he gets his permit that the town has time to recover from its error. Of course it’s still up in the air how the new council will vote on the inn issue.
Interesting, though, that Plofker remembered to do his paperwork.

Everything But the Pole

Wednesday, Jun 30, 2004 3:18pm  |  COMMENTS (4)

Lt. Ken Mercadante took a break from polishing up the glass doors on the new Montclair fire headquarters to give the Barista a sneak preview of the building, which has its grand opening at a ceremony tonight at 6. The $5.2 million, 22,000 square foot facility took two years to build and replaces the old fire headquarters and the Walnut Street station.
In addition to the ribbon cutting, firefighters were cooking up a storm (we saw lots of sausage and peppers) and they’re going to give tours of the building. On display is a room full of memoribilia from the Montclair Fire Department, including photos, old hats, uniforms, relay equipment and firehouse bells.
The only thing the new firehouse doesn’t feature is a pole. (Darn!) All the dormitories are on the first floor.

This Just In

Wednesday, Jun 30, 2004 2:46pm  |  COMMENTS (3)

Thanks to our friend Raymmmondo of the Montclair Watercooler, we’ve learned that the public hearing on the Marlboro Inn, scheduled for tonight, has been cancelled. The following statement comes from Township Manager Joseph Hartnett:

Due to a procedural deficiency, the Council is going to have to withdraw the Marlboro Inn ordinance tonight.
As a result, the public hearing scheduled for tonight will be cancelled and the public will not have an opportunity to speak. The plan is to submit a new ordinance to Council tomorrow for first reading and have a second reading and new public hearing on or before July 16th.

Hartnett was not available to tell us what the procedural deficiency was that led to the 11th-hour cancellation. And it’s anybody’s speculation how the delay in timing will play out with Steve Plofker’s demolition permit already filed. But the Barista wouldn’t be surprised if the bulldozer beat the council.
Scarecrow: Keep us informed, ok?

Yankee Doodle Dandy

Wednesday, Jun 30, 2004 1:37pm

flags_in_bloomfield And speaking of fireworks, go here for a calendar of Independence Day events in Montclair, Glen Ridge and Bloomfield.

Fireworks Expected Early

Wednesday, Jun 30, 2004 12:01pm  |  COMMENTS (29)

As the scarecrow reminds you, tonight’s the public hearing on the Township of Montclair’s proposed ordinance declaring the Marlboro Inn historic. Developer Steve Plofker, meanwhile, has applied for a permit to demolish the inn. Fireworks are expected. The Barista will be there. 8 pm. Montclair Town Hall.

Early Warning System

Tuesday, Jun 29, 2004 8:51pm  |  COMMENTS (1)


We told you she’d let us know if anything was happening.

Park Beach Golf Course" href="" rel="bookmark">Brookdale Park Beach Golf Course

Tuesday, Jun 29, 2004 5:00pm

Brookdale Park seemed eerily quiet today, giving us the impression that everybody was either at camp or at a pool. Then we noticed someone using the park as his personal beach, and saw some golf lessons going on near the baseball diamonds.


Tuesday, Jun 29, 2004 6:42am  |  COMMENTS (6)

The Barista has to admire someone who starts an anti-leaf-blower campaign in the summer. But then Sierra Club activist Pat Kenschaft had a bad run-in with a leaf blower the other day. She wrote about it on the Montclair Watercooler.

My husband and I were walking down our block toward the park when he burst into uncontollable sneezing. He gasped, “Wasn’t there just a leaf blower here?” Yes, about ten minutes ago. We got through the cloud of residual dust, and he was fine, despite his allergies, in the park. Are the people blowing up public dust doing so JUST to harm people like my husband by blowing allergens into the air or is there some other motive?

She’s holding a meeting tonight to get the darned things banned, but you have to contact her to find out where and get the secret password. After all, you wouldn’t want to be holding a leaf-blower banning meeting and have some horticultural SWAT team armed with Toro Blower-VaCs showing up in your living room. It could wreak havoc on the drapes.
Meanwhile, read Pat’s wonderful diatribe on leaf blowers here, which includes, in the Barista’s opinion, the best sentence ever written in the English language.

It will be difficult, perhaps impossible, to numerically evaluate how much mental illness is caused by leafblowers or how many tottering marriages fell into divorce because the spouses were irritated by leaf blower noise.

Rev. Stinson’s $50 Pie

Tuesday, Jun 29, 2004 12:34am  |  COMMENTS (3)


Rev. David Stinson of the Glen Ridge Congregational Church sent this in. We found it so charming, we’re running it just as he wrote it:
We were having financial difficulties at the church a few years ago. I’d just had my recipe for a rhubarb pie published in Cook & Tell, a cooking newsletter. Bragging on myself in print, I couldn’t seem to stop myself from offering to make one for anyone who would contribute $50 to the church. Fortunately I added the caveat, up to 10 pies. I had no idea crazy NJ people would pay $50 for a pie…I ended up making 11 of them and scrounged all over the south end of Glen Ridge for rhubarb. Actually Carol Harpster likes it so much that Joe keeps asking me to make more. Last one I made for her birthday he gave $75 to the church…I know it’s not worth that, but it is good with coffee, for breakfast…
This is a 2 crust pie for 9 inch dish.
3 1/2 cups chopped rhubarb
1/2 cup pureed strawberries
2 T. kirschwasser
1 1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour
3 T. melted butter
2 eggs beaten.
Make a custard by mixing the bottom 5 ingredients. Then stir in the fruit. Pour into the bottom crust. If the top crust is not laticed, cut ample vents in the top. Sprinkle sugar on the top crust. Put in a 400 degree oven for 10 minutes. Then reduce to 350 for about 35 mins or until the top is brown and the fruit bubbles.
Rhubarb is in season in Glen Ridge right now…. D.

‘Watson, Come Here. I Want You.’

Monday, Jun 28, 2004 9:47pm  |  COMMENTS (3)

bush_and_chips In a scene that was somewhat reminscent of the first days of the telephone, 56 local and not-so-local liberals showed up at Luna Stage tonight to hear filmmaker Michael Moore via internet transmission at a “Turn Up the Heat” party. The event was one of 3,000 being held nationwide and at least three held in Montclair, and was organized by the anti-Bush group,
The technology was impressive, except when it wasn’t. On the plus side, there was a map that showed great big white dots representing “Turn Up the Heat” parties and listing the numbers of participants.And the set-up allowed people to send text questions to Moore. On the minus side, a slide show prepared for the event wouldn’t play. And the lib-erati had to content itself with looking at the interactive map, rather the gargantuan Moore himself, during his talk.
The technological glitches didn’t dampen the enthusiasm of the crowd, which included people from Pompton Lakes, Westwood, Roseland, Roselle — and even a visitor from Hong Kong. The room roared with delight when Moore told them that his movie, “Fahrenheit 9/11,” was not just the #1 movie this past weekend, but the #1 movie in all the red states. Take that, Mel Gibson… I mean, George Bush.
crowdAfter Moore’s talk, recruited people to run telephone parties on July 11th to sign up unregistered voters. The party was hosted by local actor Michael Aquino, who rented the room from Luna Stage.

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I'm struck by how much attention is being paid to the details of a parking lot, as opposed to the attention paid to the future impact of the monstrous projects being planned.

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