Calling All Aspiring Authors – Come “Write” In At Montclair Public Library

BY  |  Monday, Oct 23, 2017 3:15pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

Montclair Public Library, for the fifth year, will participate in National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), a project aimed at encouraging would-be novelists to finish their first drafts. This year, in partnership with The Write Group, the library will host a series of inspiring events.

Below is the schedule of events: Continue Reading

Montclair High Graduate Gets It Right With My College Transition Video

Saturday, Oct 21, 2017 9:46am  |  COMMENTS (1)

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

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

BY  |  Friday, Oct 20, 2017 8:06am  |  COMMENTS (5)

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

Montclair SCAC Brings Urban Planning Expert Alan Mallach To Discuss Senior/Retiree Housing Challenges & Opportunities

BY  |  Wednesday, Oct 18, 2017 9:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)

On Thursday, November 9, the Montclair Senior Citizen Advisory Committee (SCAC) is holding its 2017 Seniorama Conference “Senior & Retiree Housing – Realities in Montclair: Challenges & Opportunities.” This year, SCAC is presenting a full-day conference on senior/retiree housing, a critical subject for the Montclair community.

Keynote speaker, Alan Mallach, recognized writer, scholar, urban planner and Senior Fellow at the Center for Community Progress, will introduce creative ideas for rethinking housing. He will then moderate a panel of real estate developers who will share key factors which shape housing development decisions, programs and services.

Panelists are: Cindy Jacques, United Methodist Communities; Edward Martaglio, RPM Development Group; Steven Plofker, Willow Street Partners LLC; and Richard Polton, Value Research Group.

Afternoon workshop sessions will follow and focus on: Continue Reading

Montclair Crime: Large Fight On Pine Street, DWIs, Arrest Made in Aggravated Assault Case

BY  |  Tuesday, Oct 17, 2017 2:15pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

The week in crime from D/Lt. David O’Dowd, Montclair Police Department:


10-09-2017 (Bloomfield Avenue, Johari) Ms. Esther Calderon, 43yao from West Orange, was arrested and charged with theft of clothing items from the store.

10-09-2017 (Grove Street) Mr. Stephen Lim, 23yoa from Bloomfield, was arrested and charged with DWI.

10-12-2017 (Crescent Parking Deck) Mr. Christopher McKenzie, 47yoa from West Orange was arrested and charged with DWI after striking the automated parking gate in the deck.

10-18-2017 (Grove Street) Ms. Tamika Robinson, 22yoa from East Orange, was arrested on open warrants out of Roseland, Irvington, And Scotch Plains, totaling $1800.

10-15-2017 (Bloomfield Avenue) Mr. Henry Alvarado, 36yoa from West Orange, was arrested and charged with DWI.

10-13-2017 (Pine Street) Mr. Justin Davis, 21yoa from Montclair, was arrested and charged with Aggravated Assault and Conspiracy after being part of a group that assaulted a 47yoa Montclair man. The victim was transported to Mountainside Hospital with a head injury.

Burglary/Theft Continue Reading

Montclair Planning Board: Plofker Plan For Diva Lounge Finalized; Watchung Parking Lot Discussed

BY  |  Tuesday, Oct 17, 2017 6:30am  |  COMMENTS (7)

The Montclair Planning Board

With the Seymour Street arts district largely behind it and an application for the Lackawanna Plaza redevelopment project yet to be formally submitted, the Montclair Planning Board took it easy at its October 16 meeting, going over and passing two resolutions for previously approved projects.  Both applications were represented by attorney Alan Trembulak.

The first resolution memorializes the approval for a new apartment unit wing that developer Steven Plofker is adding to the back of the old Ford dealership on Bloomfield Avenue that until recently was the Diva Lounge.  The resolution bars any future effort to add stories to the original Bloomfield Avenue structure itself, but board member Anthony Ianuale was unclear as to how such a clause would be enforced.   Board attorney Arthur Neiss said that the specific ban as stated in the resolution would make that clear, and Trembulak elaborated that, with the resolution on file, any future developer or building owner who wanted to redo the structure would have to go over the resolution in the municipal records and would see the restriction as worded.  The band emphasizes the need to preserve the historic aspect of the original building, which Planning Director Janice Talley specified.

Board member Martin Schwartz, meanwhile, reminded Neiss that Plofker had agreed to attempt to match the architectural detail of the additions to the building with the surrounding architecture.  The resolution as written noted that the walls on the north and east elevations lack such detail and should blend in with the elements of the original building, but Schwartz suggested that the resolution should also specify that the architecture of the new additions also reflect other buildings in the immediate vicinity.  He said that Plofker had in fact agreed to do that.  Plofker is also required to meet with the board’s revisions committee to finalize the architectural detailing.

Board member Carmel Loughman asked if the board gets a final design when they go through anything that may have changes.  Talley said that if developers have to be changed before they get their building permits, they have to file final plans.  “We always do a resolution compliance review of those plans that are submitted,” she told Loughman, “to make sure that they comply with the conditions of the resolution.”  Schwartz added that the board’s more meticulous overview of the Seymour Street project was necessary because so much detail had been left open and not fully detailed and rendered in that case, while the Plofker project involved a much smaller area.  Ianuale questioned the wisdom of requiring the architectural detail to resemble the adjacent buildings, but Schwartz explained that the Plofker design should not have to look like the other buildings, only to harmonize with them.  The board passed the resolution 8-0 (board member Carole Willis and Chairman John Wynn, whose place was taken by Vice Chair Keith Brodock, were absent).

The board then turned approving a sign for the small strip storefront complex at 122 Watchung Avenue.  Planning Board members, including Deputy Mayor / Second Ward Councilor Robin Schlager, whose ward includes the property, said that the storefronts needed to be spruced up before they would consider the sign application.  The application, which was heard in September, is for a monument sign at the foot of the parking lot along the sidewalk.

Attorney Alan Trembulak testifies at a Montclair Planning Board meeting on a sign application for the property at 122 Watchung Avenue.

Trembulak, speaking for the applicants, testified that the owners of the property had met the demands of the board.  The numerous eyesores – a pay phone, most of the freestanding signs relating to parking rules, poles close to the sidewalk, and hanging wires, have all been removed, and there are plans to resurface the parking lot and to restripe it with new handicapped-parking spaces, as well as add Belgian-block curbing to the edges.  The applicants had also agreed to landscape two interior areas of the parking lot – the area where the sign would be and on the opposite side of the center island.  The landscaping would include grass and low-growth shrubs, with native plantings.  Trembulak said he could submit a landscaping plan to the board. Continue Reading

Hundreds Sign Petition To Keep Montclair Avenue Safe On Halloween By Stopping Traffic

BY  |  Monday, Oct 16, 2017 9:00am  |  COMMENTS (0)

Montclair Avenue has long been a favorite haunt on Halloween in Montclair, attracting trick or treaters in the thousands according to some homeowners on the avenue. Now there is a move to have Montclair Avenue, which runs from Beverly to Label Street, closed to traffic on Halloween night. The petition reads as follows: Continue Reading

First Ward Councilor William Hurlock to Hold Community Meeting, Oct. 19

BY  |  Monday, Oct 16, 2017 7:45am  |  COMMENTS (0)

First Ward Councilor William Hurlock will host a community meeting Thursday, October 19, from 7:30 to 9:00 p.m. in the Bellevue Avenue Branch of the Montclair Public Library, 185 Bellevue Avenue, Montclair.

The meeting is open to everyone and will focus on current issues and concerns of the Montclair community. For more information, please contact Councilor Hurlock at

S.O.F.I.A. Annual Domestic Violence Awareness Vigil, 10/23

BY  |  Sunday, Oct 15, 2017 3:34pm  |  COMMENTS (0)

Start Out Fresh Intervention Advocates (S.O.F.I.A.) will hold its annual Domestic Violence Awareness Vigil on Monday, October 23rd, 2017 at 6:30 PM in Montclair’s Crane Park. The annual vigil occurs during National Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and is focused on remembering loved ones lost to domestic violence, supporting survivors, and promoting unity and awareness throughout the community.

You are invited to join in lighting candles to let those affected by domestic violence know they are not alone and that we support their journey to healing. S.O.F.I.A. also lights candles to raise awareness and to promote advocacy to work to eradicate domestic violence. Participants can bring their own candles or flashlights, but S.O.F.I.A. will also provide candles to attendees.

Crane Park in Montclair is located just north of Bloomfield Avenue, at the intersection of Glenridge Avenue and Lackawanna Plaza. The vigil will begin at 6:30 PM and adjourn at approximately 7:30 PM.

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.

Tip, Follow, Friend, Subscribe

Links & Information

Baristanet on Flickr