Baristaville Open Houses: Sunday, Oct. 22

BY  |  Saturday, Oct 21, 2017 2:57pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

This week’s open house column is sponsored by Kate McDonough


A beautiful Sunday for viewing some of the 70 open houses in the greater Baristavile area.

586 Park St, Montclair

List Price: $1,590,000
Taxes: $59,306
Acreage: 0.29
BRM/BTH: 6/6.1

Custom tudor in private cul de sac featuring two master suites, one with a soaking tub; gourmet kitchen with center island; butler pantry and breakfast room; first floor bedroom with full bath; four fireplaces (bedroom, living room, family room, master sitting room); finished basement with game and media rooms plus wet bar; leaded glass windows; beamed ceilings and hardwood floors. Enjoy your secluded patio while viewing the park. Located close to NYC Mid-Town Direct trains and two bus lines. Open 2-4 p.m.


This week’s featured listing is sponsored by Melody Kettle.


51 Virginia Ave, Montclair


List Price: $519,000
Taxes: $7,490
Acreage: 0.08
BRM/BTH: 3/2

Updated Colonial with veranda; living room with wood-burning fireplace and hardwood floors; dining room; and stylish kitchen with granite counters, breakfast bar, and stainless steel appliances. The second floor features three bedrooms and a full bath. The fully finished basement offers a second full bath, making it the perfect guest space or kid-friendly recreation area. Private backyard, detached garage, and central air conditioning and updated systems round out this classic Montclair home. Open 1-4 p.m.


74 Christopher Street, Montclair

List Price: $999,000
Taxes: $27,316
Acreage: 0.29
BRM/BTH: 7/3.2

Colonial with beamed ceilings and inviting fireplace in the living room; sunroom; large dining room and chef’s kitchen with center island. Family room opens to patio and secluded yard. Second floor features en-suite master bedroom and three more bedrooms. Third floor has three bedrooms and a full bath. Home near Walnut Street’s restaurants, farmer’s market, great shopping and NYC train. Open 1-4 p.m.


46 Cleveland Terrace, Bloomfield

List Price: $494,000
Taxes: $13,050
Acreage: 0.14
BRM/BTH: 5/2.1

Renovated Colonial with a view of Watsessing Park and river features parquet wood floors throughout and original trim; living room; family room and beamed ceiling dining room with fireplace. New eat-in kitchen has stainless steel appliances, exhaust hood, granite counter tops, marble tiled backsplash and breakfast area. Step outside to an expansive yard with plenty of lawn, secluded gravel-topped patio and wooden shed. Second floor has four bedrooms and a new full bath. Master bedroom on third floor has walk-in closet, new full bath with double sink, granite-topped vanity and glass-enclosed shower. The basement is unfinished. Open 2-4 p.m.

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Montclair High Graduate Gets It Right With My College Transition Video

Saturday, Oct 21, 2017 9:46am  |  COMMENTS (0)

Emery Bergmann graduated from Montclair High School this past June and is a freshman at Cornell. Sounds great, right? Yes, but it’s still a tough transition. My College Transition, a video Bergmann made for her digital media class homework assignment, is a frank, funny look at the struggle so many freshmen face when making the transition from home to college.

The video was also noticed by TODAY Parents and already has over 50,000 views.

Bergmann, a 17-year-old Fine Arts major from Montclair, New Jersey, was given the challenge to depict a “transformation” for her class. “I knew I would only enjoy making the video if the subject I was showing was something I had strong feelings about,” Bergmann told TODAY Parents

We love Bergmann’s honesty, her mad video & dance skills and song choice at the end. Watch it through, then share with your college freshman and high school seniors.

Everything Is Ducky At Montclair Businesses Supporting MAU’s Annual Duck Derby

Saturday, Oct 21, 2017 9:28am  |  COMMENTS (0)

Montclair Shukokai Karate

Have you seen lots of ducks around town? It’s all to support Montclair Ambulance Unit (MAU). Today (Saturday, October 21), stop by Edgemont Park from 12pm-3:30pm for Fall Fest featuring live music by The Kootz, food trucks, a magic show by Joe Fischer, inflatables, hay rides by Applegate Farm and, of course, the Duck Derby which will launch at 3pm.

Your generous support will help Montclair Ambulance Unit (MAU) with the purchase of a new ambulance!

Check out some of the many businesses who have adopted ducks to support MAU: Continue Reading

Be There And Hear Montclair Orchestra Make History! Inaugural Concert Sunday, 10/22 (VIDEO)

BY  |  Friday, Oct 20, 2017 1:00pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

When you hear the opening notes of Verdi’s “La forza del destino” performed at the inaugural concert of the new Montclair Orchestra, you will be hearing history in the making.

The original “Montclair Orchestra” was established in 1922, but the ensemble later merged with other groups in the region, eventually moving to Newark and becoming what is today the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra. Since then, a permanent orchestra has never been re-established — until now.

The Montclair Orchestra launches its inaugural season with “Operatic Connections,” this Sunday, October 22 at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church in Montclair.

Montclair Orchestra musical director David Chan

The program, inspired by opera and song and featuring Verdi, Mozart and Mahler, is a nod to Montclair Orchestra’s Musical Director David Chan, who is also concertmaster of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra. Internationally acclaimed soprano Ying Fang will join the orchestra for the finale to Mahler’s pastoral Symphony #4.

Ying Fang

Chan, who is is in his 17th season as leader of the MET Orchestra, is also a brilliant violinist who enjoys a diverse career as soloist, conductor, chamber musician, and teacher. His concerts have taken him to leading stages in North America, Europe, and Asia, appearing as soloist with such conductors as James Levine and Fabio Luisi.

Chan conducts Montclair Orchestra at first rehearsal at Montclair State.

Last weekend, the Montclair Orchestra, under Chan’s direction, had its first rehearsal at MSU’s John J. Cali School of Music (listen to them hit those very first notes in the video below). The efforts of Montclair Orchestra president Andre Weker, some 18 months in the making, and with community support and collaboration with some of the best orchestral training schools and the best orchestras in the country, culminates with this opening performance on Sunday, at 7pm.

With members of the NJSO, MET, NY Philharmonic, and students from MSU, Rutgers, Juilliard, Mannes, and Manhattan School of Music all performing together, this performance is one of a kind and expected to sell out. Don’t take a chance waiting on line for tickets at the door; buy yours here. You don’t want to miss this moment.

Weekend Family Fun: Little Read, Duck Derby, Gardens Aglow, Halloween Spooktacular on the Green

BY  |  Friday, Oct 20, 2017 9:30am  |  COMMENTS (0)

The weekend is here! Not sure what to do? You’ll have an abundance of choices this weekend — there are so many terrific happenings for families to enjoy this weekend! Make your schedule and don’t miss out!

Montclair’s The Little Read 2017 will be held this weekend. It kicks off Friday evening in the Main Library Auditorium (South Fullerton Avenue, Montclair) at 7:00 PM with Bedtime Stories from the Mayor. Additional events will be held around town beginning at 11:00 AM. For a full schedule of events, visit the Library’s website.

Presby Memorial Iris Gardens (474 Upper Mountain Avenue, Upper Montclair) will host Gardens Aglow on Friday from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM. View the gardens at dusk as they come to life with artfully carved jack-o-lanterns supplied by local high school art departments. Activities, entertainment, and refreshments will be ongoing throughout the evening. This event is free and open to the public. Continue Reading

Montclair First Ward Community Meeting Features Traffic & Pedestrian Talk and Special Guests

BY  |  Friday, Oct 20, 2017 8:06am  |  COMMENTS (4)

Montclair First Ward Councilor William Hurlock had numerous guests to join him at his October 19 community meeting at the Bellevue Avenue Library branch, but despite the array of topics covered, constituents’ concerns still came down to two central issue: traffic and pedestrian safety.

Officer Travis Davis of the Montclair Police Department’s community policing unit was on hand to address the many concerns about traffic.  He said the traffic bureau has made more of an effort to enforce ordinances pertaining to motor vehicles and will soon add another officer to its ranks, but he conceded that budget restrictions and a lack of available personnel made enforcement difficult.  “Our traffic unit is only going to get bigger and bigger as our resources allow for that to happen,” he said.  Office Davis also said radar was being used to monitor areas of concern in the township, and he noted that police officers are helping with enforcement through overtime, between 4 P.M. and 8 P.M., paid though grants the township has received. Continue Reading

Essex County Strut Your Mutt! Canine Halloween Costume Parade and Contest, 10/21

BY  |  Thursday, Oct 19, 2017 3:15pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

On Saturday, October 21st, Essex County dog owners can display their creativity and participate in Strut Your Mutt, Essex County’s Annual Canine Halloween Costume Parade and Contest. This year, two parades have been scheduled. Participation is free. Prizes will be awarded for first, second and third places in a variety of categories. For more information, please call 973-268-3500.

Morning Parade
Date: Saturday, October 21, 2017
Rain Date: Sunday, October 22nd
Time: Registration: 9:15 a.m.
Parade: 10 a.m.
Place: Essex County Brookdale Dog Park
Grove Street

Afternoon Parade
Date: Saturday, October 21, 2017
Rain Date: Sunday, October 22nd
Time: Registration: 1:15 p.m.
Parade: 2 p.m.
Place: Essex County South Mountain Dog Park
Crest Drive
Maplewood/Millburn, NJ

MontClairVoyant: You’ll See What ELA Stands For When You Sit Down to Read This

BY  |  Thursday, Oct 19, 2017 1:30pm  |  COMMENTS (36)


ELA! What does it stand for?

Not Electric Light Orchestra

English Language Arts, and Extra-Large Atrocities built by developers in Montclair.


Can we first talk about the latest way-too-big project before discussing the new Extremely Lopped Authors (ELA) curriculum and other things that came up at Monday’s Board of Education meeting?

Held 15 Days Before Halloween

Sure! A developer wants to replace the car wash and car-rental place at Grove and Walnut with an oversized, mediocre-looking retail/office structure. He’s also known for demolishing the historic Marlboro Inn to build those huge Christopher Court houses, and for hosting Most Variances Palooza.


What a festival! For his Grove/Walnut project, that developer wants a variance to create only 50 parking spaces despite 82 being required. Plus that project would make an already busy area CRAZY busy with even more traffic — in a locale near train tracks. Would an approval again Exemplify Leadership Abdication (ELA)?

Parking Paucity

You betcha, with one silver lining: Grove Pharmacy would do a bang-up business selling tranquilizers to people driving north on Grove after they finally get past Walnut.


At Oct. 16’s BOE meeting, there was plenty of public criticism of the new English Language Arts (ELA) curriculum that calls for students to read fewer novels and more short things. I know you devoted a whole column to that last week, but do you have anything to add?

Test-Preppy Approach

Reading full novels is educational, pleasurable, helps teach empathy, and helps students develop more of an attention span in this digital age of short content. Speaking of that, my previous sentence can be summarized as “novels: good.”


If the BOE and the school district listened more to teachers (as various Oct. 16 attendees requested), we’d get Education-Lesson Awesomeness (ELA), right? Teachers are on “the front lines,” and know what’s best for students!

Peta Gogy

Far from “the front lines” is PARCC test pusher Pearson, a company known as England’s Least Asset (ELA).


Wasn’t a highlight of the meeting BOE member Eve Robinson responding to the interim superintendent’s annual PARCC report by eloquently slamming those exams for being bad, for wasting precious learning time, etc.?

Stan Dardized-Nonsense

Yes! Those detested tests are reportedly now given in just five states — down from 20-plus! — and hopefully a new governor will help get rid of them in Jersey, too. I won’t rest until the PARCCs are in minus-five states (Pearson math).


Shorter ELA readings in middle school, and now school-district enforcement of shorter maternity leaves. Any connection between those negative developments?

Non-Progressive Moves

Exhausted parents of newborns might mistake the title of James Michener’s “Tales of the South Pacific” for “Wails of Those Who Mouth Pacifiers.” Oops — that wordplay was pathetic, goshdarnit.


Hey! Watch your language!

On TV or Your Phone

Just keep your Ears Locked, Always (ELA).


Dave Astor, author, is the MontClairVoyant. His opinions about politics and local events are strictly his own and do not represent or reflect the views of Baristanet.





Wooden Spoon Southern Kitchen & Saloon: Country Comfort Food With Soul

BY  |  Thursday, Oct 19, 2017 11:45am  |  COMMENTS (0)

If you find yourself jonesing for comfort food now that the nights have turned chilly, then Bloomfield’s new Wooden Spoon Southern Kitchen and Saloon has got your fix. Here, you’ll find a large menu of Southern specialties plus authentic Southern BBQ, prepared by executive chef and owner Donald Erickson, whose dream has been to bring a touch of the South to New Jersey.

Open since late summer in the space formerly Senoritas, Wooden Spoon has a comfortable natural-wood accented dining room and bar, with a large dining room and a 10-screen sports bar tucked away upstairs.

We recently stopped and tried the chef’s signature dishes — Southern fried chicken and creole shrimp and grits.

The shrimp and grits plate is beautiful to look at: a big bowl brimming with andouille slices, large shrimp, vegetables in a richly seasoned wine, mild chile, herb sauce, layered with flavor. Underneath it all, a silky, creamy cushion of grits that envelops every bite. This dish is perfectly prepared with loads of nuanced flavors and contrasting textures. Not surprisingly, this is one of the most popular dishes on the menu. Continue Reading

Weekend Arts & Entertainment Calendar: October 19 – 22

BY  |  Thursday, Oct 19, 2017 9:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)


Lots of great local events to enjoy this weekend! From live music and concerts, to comedy and theater, to films and social events, this is your guide to what’s happening:

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Featured Comment

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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