Local Beat: Money, Musical Theater, and Mommies


Local Beat is NJ News Commons’ weekly roundup of the best and most topical reporting from local news sites around New Jersey.

AirportMore than $3.6 million in federal grant money was awarded for imporovements to three of New Jersey’s airports, including the Essex County Airport, reports TAP into West Essex. The Essex County airport was awarded $200,000 in grant money, which will go toward the removal of obstructions on two of its runways. Newark-Liberty International Airport received the largest sum, with a total of $3.4 million in grant money that will be put toward the construction of a new apron to allow for additional aircraft parking.

In Roselle Park, Jensyn and David Modero’s local theater production company, Just Off Broadway Productions, is hosting their annual summer musical theater production, reports Saul Qersdyn of Roselle Park News. This year, they have chosen “CATS The Musical,” created by none other than Andrew Lloyd Weber. In keeping with the theme of the show, Roselle Park was also the first municipality in Union County to adopt a Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) policy, which helps residents to deal with feral or stray cats in a humane manner by allowing them to be spayed or neutured before they are returned to their colony. The Moderos have teamed up with Christine and Maria Samadjopolous, founders of Meeko & Ollie’s Mission (MOM) to educate people on both the benefits of TNR and the proper procedures for dealing with feral or stray animals in a humane way.

The Great AuditoriumRoselle Park isn’t the only NJ town that has theater fever. Paul Goldfinger of Blogfinger brings us back in time with his article on the Ocean Grove Opera House. The Great Auditorium, as it was known, was originally just called “The Auditorium,” although the colorful array of vintage admission tickets from 1908 display the name “Ocean Grove Auditorium.” It wasn’t until the 1970s that the name officially became “The Great Auditorium,” and the name took a while to take hold, according to the authors of The Great Auditorium–Ocean Grove’s Architectural Treasure.

Christopher GoodellIn Trenton, lawmakers recently signed a bill to commemorate the life and service of fallen Waldwick police officer, Christopher Goddell, reports Jerry Demarco of the Cliffview Pilot. The bill designates a portion of the highway along Route 17 in Waldwick as the Christopher Goodell Memorial Highway. Christopher Goodell was parked in an unmarked police cruiser on the side of Route 17 on July 17th. He was killed instantly when his cruiser was struck by a tractor-trailer. Goodell graduated from Waldwick High School in 2000 and served in the U.S. Marine Corps before joining the Waldwick Police Department.

In Sparta, the Board of Education is once again investigating the use of student uniforms in public schools, reports Jennifer Dericks of TAP into Sparta. The discussion began after Paula Bladek, a parent, and her husband Richard Bladek, a board member, asked the district to formally consider adopting a policy on school uniforms during a public comment session at one of Superintendent Dennis Tobin’s public forums. Tobin responded by surveying parents in the district to guage the level of support for such a measure. The adoption of a dress code as a school policy is permitted under state law, and several schools in North Jersey have already adopted similar policies.

BreastisesThe Collinswood Farmer’s Market hosted a breastfeeding event over the weekend, according to Matt Skoufalous of NJ Pen. The event, sometimes referred to as a “latch-on,” was one of roughly 12,600 nationwide events that were hosted in conjunction with the Big Latch-On, a global breastfeeding awareness initiative. The Famer’s Market drew some 15 mothers, all of whom participated in the coordinated public feeding in an attempt to break the taboos surrounding the practice of breastfeeding in public. Organizers and supporters of the event made a point to stress that the demonstration was not meant to push a “lactivist” agenda against the use of baby formulas. Rather, according to the latch-on’s organizer, Amanda Kimmel, the point of the event was to say to mothers, “If we choose to breastfeed, we shouldn’t have to hide.”


Our full roundup:

RPPD, RPFD, And UC HazMat Respond To Truck Spill Roselle Park News
Westfield Police Chief Urges ‘Lock Your Car Doors’ After 25 Thefts in July TAP into Westfield
GAME ON: Common Application for College Goes Live This Week TAP into Livingston
Children join in on ground breaking of new library TAP into South Plainfield
CATS The Musical In Caldwell August 7 – 9: The Summer Day & The Midnight Dance Roselle Park News
Montclair Resident Stephen Colbert Buys ‘The Sarah Palin Channel’ TAP into Livingston
Montclair State University to Make SAT & ACT Scores Optional TAP into Livingston
Orange/West Orange Unico Holds 17th Annual Bocce Tournament in Livingston TAP into Livingston
First Annual Joe Valentine Memorial Softball Tournament Held Saturday TAP into Livingston
First Annual Brendan Tevlin Lacrosse Festival to be Held in West Orange August 2 TAP into Livingston
Essex County Airport Recipient of $200,000 Grant TAP into West Essex
Caldwell University to Partner with Robert Wood Johnson TAP into West Essex
Bill to Allow Retired Athletic Instructors to Stay On as Coaches Signed By Governor TAP into South Plainfield
11U South Plainfield Dynamite Win the 2014 East Brunswick Slugfest Baseball Tournament TAP into South Plainfield
South Plainfield’s Summer Drama Rocks the Town TAP into Plainfield
NJ lawmakers introduce bill to create Christopher Goodell Memorial Highway Cliffview Pilot
Good News for Gloucester City Residents CNB News
Magical Summer Nights in Ocean Grove, New Jersey Blogfinger
The Ocean Grove Opera House, 1908 Blogfinger
Sparta Board of Education Investigates School Uniform Policy TAP into Sparta
TAP into West Orange provided details in the Brendan Tevlin murder after attending the Essex County Prosecutor’s Press Conference on August 4 TAP into West Orange
Ali Muhammed Brown, Eric Williams and Jeremy Villagran Charged in Murder of Brendan Tevlin TAP into Livingston
Details of Brendan Tevlin Murder Emerge During Essex County Prosecutor’s Press Conference TAP into Livingston
Good Vibes and Easy Living at the First Annual Brendan Tevlin Lacrosse Festival TAP into Livingston
Scammers Disrupt Cherry Hill Walgreens, CVS with Bomb Scares NJ Pen
‘Big Latch-On’ Makes a Big Statement for Breastfeeding NJ Pen
On the White Horse Pike, Local Landmark Disappears, Its Future Uncertain NJ Pen

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