Seuss, shamrocks, and snakes in WLB Library fun

West Long Branch — The West Long Branch Library, 95 Poplar Avenue, has announced its children’s programs for March.

 

Weekly Programs

• Wiggle and Giggle Storytime, for ages 10-24 months (with parent/caregiver) is held Wednesdays, 10-10:30 a.m. Siblings welcome.

The storytime features songs, rhymes, and stories.

• Morning Together Storytime, for ages 2 1/2 to 5 (with parent/caregiver) is Wednesdays, 10:45-11:05 a.m. Families have lots of fun participating together in stories, songs, and craft activities!

 

Special Activities

The following special events require registration, which can be done in person, by phone at 732-222-5993, or online at bit.ly/WLBKids.

• Signing with Seuss!, for ages 4 and up, will be on Wed.,March 4, 4 p.m.

Celebrate Read Across America with Sign Language Interpreter, Katie Stoppiello, as she translates Dr. Seuss classics into American Sign Language.

• Bagpipe Tunes in the Afternoon, for all ages, will be on Wed., March 11, 4 p.m.Wear something green and celebrate all things Irish! They’ll have crafts and live bagpipers playing Celtic music.

• Monmouth County Parks Presents…SNAKES!!, a program for all ages, on Wed., March 18, 3:45 p.m. Learn cool facts about snakes when a Monmouth County Parks naturalist brings live snakes to visit.

• Kids Read to Therapy Dogs!, for grades kindergarten and up, Wednesday, March 25 at 4 p.m. Improve your reading skills and make a new friend by reading aloud to a therapy dog. Bring your favorite book or choose one from the library’s shelves.

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The West Long Branch Library is a branch of the Monmouth County Library System. For more information, visit www.monmouthcountylib.org.

 

‘Not a political stunt’ – O’port bringing back OEM staff

By Neil Schulman

Oceanport — The borough’s staff of the Office of Emergency Management, which quit at the end of 2019, has been asked to return.

At the Feb. 20 Borough Council meeting, Councilman Bryan Keeshan, chair of the Public Safety Committee, said that they have asked Mauro “Buzz” Baldanza to come back as the Director of OEM, along his staff, which included Chris Baggot, 1st Assistant Director; Wes Sherman, 2nd Assistant Director; and Police Chief Michael Kelly, 3rd Assistant Director.

“We probably have the most qualified OEM staff,” Keeshan said.

In October, Baldanza, his subordinates and 20 volunteers announced they were leaving at the end of the year. They said that the governing body at the time had not purchased them needed equipment and not met with them to discuss issues in more than a year, and they had lost confidence in the Oceanport council at the time.

Three of the six council members are new this year though.

Mayor Jay Coffey said that he could have reappointed Baldanza earlier, and would have been happy to, but felt a procedure should be followed. Instead, having now received the recommendation he’ll make the appointment official

“It’s my appointment, but I wasn’t going to sit here and dictate,” Coffey said. “I depend on the committee to go out there and investigate, and I think they came back with what we already knew. Buzz and his crew are the best thing out there.”

When Baldanza announced he’d step down in October, some people dismissed it as a political gambit to support Coffey, and said that Baldanza was sore because he hadn’t been given a new truck.

Coffey said that it wasn’t a gambit, and it wasn’t about a vehicle.

“That was not a political stunt,” the mayor said. “Twenty people stepped down with him.”

The problem, Coffey believes, was that volunteers weren’t being treated properly by the former governing body.

“For a long time there, that group and other groups weren’t appreciated,” he said.

Oceanport can’t guarantee that the OEM and similar departments will get everything they request. “This isn’t going to be an Oprah thing,” he said, referring to the episode of her show where Oprah Winfrey gave out free cars to everyone in the audience.

But they do need to be treated respectfully, he said.

“I don’t want to hear anyone say this was a political stunt and it was over a car,” Coffey said. “These are the people operating behind the scenes, running into places where we would be running away.”

 

Monmouth Beach School gets sustainability grant

Monmouth Beach — Sustainable Jersey for Schools and the New Jersey Education Association (NJEA) has announced that the Monmouth Beach Elementary School has been awarded a Sustainable Jersey for Schools capacity-building grant.

Monmouth Beach Elementary School representatives with Sustainable Jersey and NJEA staff at the NJEA Grant Awards Brunch.

The $2,000 grant is intended to assist the school green team as they lead and coordinate sustainability activities.

“Our Go Green Committee has been working hard to achieve district certification through the Sustainable Jersey Schools Program. The group applied for and was recently awarded a $2,000 grant that will be used to upgrade and expand our recycling efforts in the All-purpose room,” said Michael Ettore, Principal/Superintendent.

With this contribution NJEA has provided $1.25 million to support a sustainable future for children across the state through the Sustainable Jersey for Schools program.

“It is our responsibility to care for our planet, protecting it, making sure that the ways in which we interact with it are sustainable,” said NJEA Vice President Sean M. Spiller. “As educators, we bear a heavier mantle of responsibility because not only do we need to care for our own footprint but educate our students and communities to do the same — to become engaged citizens, global leaders in saving and protecting our planet. NJEA is honored to continue our work with Sustainable Jersey as we direct resources into our schools that will support these innovative programs.”

In addition to grant funding, NJEA supports Sustainable Jersey for Schools as a program underwriter.

“These grants encourage our schools and districts to foster innovative sustainability initiatives that make their schools better stewards in their communities,” said Sustainable Jersey Executive Director Randall Solomon. “Sustainable Jersey for Schools grants catalyze school-centered sustainability programs and support the creative superintendents, principals, teachers, students and parents who are leading them.”

Proposals were judged by an independent Blue-Ribbon Selection Committee. The Sustainable Jersey for Schools grants are intended to help school districts and schools make progress toward a sustainable future in general, and specifically toward Sustainable Jersey for Schools certification.

 

 

 

Ocean Township HS Hall of Fame Class of 2020

Sixteen athletes, one coach, and four distinguished alumni were inducted into the Athletic and Alumni Hall of Fame in ceremonies held on February 7, 2020, at the Ocean Township High School. Athletes were inducted by their coaches. The Hall of Fame, which was organized in 1982, has inducted a total of 139 athletes, coaches, and winning teams with graduating classes beginning in 1967, up to and including 2009. Plaques with a photograph and biography of each inductee will be displayed on the “Wall of Fame” in the hallway outside of the school gym. The new inductees were introduced at halftime of the Ocean/Wall basketball game. Those inductees were:

Holly Biro Edling, Class of 2007 – 4-year varsity letter winner in swimming; current school record holder in 3 events; 3-time First-Team All-Shore record holder at LaSalle University.

Nora Bosmans, Class of 2007 -10 varsity letter winner; 3-time All-Shore in Field Hockey; 4-time All-Shore in softball at Monmouth University; named Softball Coach of the Year in 2014 at Holmdel High School.
Danielle Caruso, Class of 2009, 4-year varsity letter winner in swimming; current school record holder in 4 events; led the team to 1st B Central Sectional Championship; Monmouth County and Shore Conference Champ; Scholarship to Lehigh University.

Chris Cerven, Class of 2008 – 4-year varsity letter winner in golf; Champ Wall Invitational;1st Team All-State Group III; 3rd in NJSIAA Tournament of Champions; Clemson University Golf Team; now a PGA Class “A” Professional.

Kaitlin English, Class of 2007 – 4-year varsity swimming; current school record holder in 4 events; All-State Swimmer in 2006; Scholarship to University of Massachusetts.

Joseph Falco, Class of 2007 – All-County in football; 3-time District wrestling champ and 3-time Region Finalist; College football and wrestling

Douglas Friedman, Class of 2003 – All-Shore in Tennis; All-State, 2nd Team; Member of Division, Shore Conference and Central Jersey Championship Teams; career record of 95-8.

Kyle Kiss, Class of 2007 – 4-year varsity letter winner in Wrestling; 3-time District and Region Champ; 4-time State Place Winner; Ranked Top 5 in the country; 3-time ACC Place Winner; Wrestling Scholarship to North Carolina Chapel Hill; currently a coach at Rutgers University.

Michael Lampa, Class of 2009 – NJSIAA State Champion in Tennis; 2-time Monmouth County Champ; 4-time All-Shore; Ranked # 1 in Boys 18 & Under USTA Eastern Section; career record 109-7 at 1st singles; 2-time All-Big East; Tennis Scholarship to St. John’s University.

Carly Lyster, Class of 2007 – 11 varsity letters in soccer, basketball, and lacrosse; All-Shore in soccer & lacrosse; ranked Nationally in lacrosse at Wagner College.

Georgina Nembhard, Class of 2007 – 8 varsity letters in indoor & outdoor track; current school record in 11 events; County & Group III Champ; 1st Team All-Shore & All-State; Track Scholarship to the University of Georgia where she qualified for NCAA Championship.

Laura Pembleton Garofalo, Class of 2007 – All-Shore & All-State Group III in Softball; 3-time All-Shore in Swimming; Shore Conference Champion for 3 years; Current record holder at OTHS in 4 events; Scholarship to St. Joseph’s College.

Dana Sherman, Class of 2007 – 4-year Division Champion Gymnastics Team; State Champ in Balance Beam; All-Shore & All-State Gymnastics Team in 2003.

Jeff Siciliano, Class of 2007 – 3-time District Champion and 2-time Region Champion in Wrestling; State Finalist; Member 4-time CJIII Wrestling Champs; County Wrestler of the Year.

Andrew Van Dyk, Class of 2008 – Member of 3 straight Group III Championship Wrestling Teams; 3-time District Champ; 2-time Region Champ; 4-time State Place Winner; final record 137-28.

Keith Weinkofsky, Class of 2007 – 1st Team All-State, All-Shore & All-County Baseball; State Baseball Player of the Year 2006; Current Shore Conference Homerun Record Holder; All-American at Brookdale Community College, NJCAA National Player of the Year 2009.

Ken Hoff, Coach – Head Wrestling Coach for 10 years; 5 Sectional, Shore Conference Division & District 22 Championships; Coached 35 District Champs; 12 Region Champs; 21 State Place Winners and 2 State Champions.

The following were inducted into the Alumni Hall of Fame:
Guy Thomas Cosentino, Class of 1977 – Brigadier General (retired) US Army; Served 30 years in US Army; Commandant, National War College; Deputy Commanding General, NATO Training Mission- Afghanistan Bronze Star; Legion of Merit; Officer Candidate School Hall of Fame.

Joseph A. Palaia (Deceased), Neptune High School – Wanamassa School Principal for 30 years; Mayor Ocean Township; County Freeholder; NJ Assemblyman; NJ Senate 1989-2008.

Carol Samaha Steadman (Deceased), Class of 1970 – Teacher and Innovator at Ocean Township Elementary School.

Marc Swersky, Class of 1978 – 2-time Grammy Award Winning Songwriter; Over 50 million records sold; vocalist mentor, song writer, musician, and producer.

The Hall of Fame Committee plans to induct the next class consisting of graduates from 2010-2012.

Additional photos can be viewed on our sport page on Facebook; The Link Sports

Ocean Township HS Hall of Fame Class of 2020

7th Annual Vacation Expo a big success

On Saturday, February 22, from 10 a.m.– 2 p.m. Dearborn Market’s indoor garden center was transformed into a festive travel destination for the public to enjoy browsing for their next vacation destination.

The award winning, time-tested Excel Travel – celebrating 26 years of success – featured more than 35 of their favorite vacation vendors, operators and owners of top-notch travel destinations.

These experts provided first-hand information about a wide variety of travel destinations.

The possibilities were limitless including everything from an exotic safari, a fun-filled, family cruise, a romantic getaway or simply a resort within a day’s drive, it was all on display at the Vacation Expo.

As shoppers entered the warm garden center they heard the sounds of Tropical Island Music performed by local artist Mario DaCunha.

No matter what your idea of a dream vacation is, it was easy planning at the Vacation Expo. There was an endless variety of journeys available with the lowest prices possible (even compared to Expedia, Travelocity, etc.)

With 26 years in the business and a staff of travel counselors whose average experience is 24 years, Excel Travel owner Friedli kicked off by stating his four reasons (with comments), on why you should use a travel agency for booking your next vacation.

1. Best Price. “I can get better pricing online,” Friedli said when asked about online deal sites, “Have you ever seen any proof that you can better prices online? I’ve never been able to find a survey that confirms that you can get lower prices on Expedia, Travelocity or Travel Zoom compared from what you get from a travel agency. Never.”

2. Expert Advice. Friedli talked about the inside knowledge his travel counselors have, one even having gone to Disneyland 39 times. “Yes, you can do it online. When we do it for you, you get free expert advice. You pay for the services of a travel agency whether you use a travel agency or not. We’ve had a customer come in with their Expedia print-out for a cruise. We pointed out that this is a great cruise with a great cabin. We can get you the same price, but for $50 more, you can get a cabin that’s not above the nightclub so you can actually sleep at night.”

3. 24/7 Emergency Service. In discussing airline cancellations or delays, “If there is a problem with your flight, we can help bail you out. We know what airlines can and cannot do.” If warranted, Excel Travel can get you compensated.

4. Shift the Risk. “People make mistakes when they book their own vacation. You’d be surprised how many people book flights to Naples, Florida instead of Naples, Italy.”

“It’s not about cheaper. You can always get cheaper. It’s about getting value,” said Friedli.

Friedli also mentioned that in many countries, passports must be valid for three or six months past the return date of their trip.

Excel Travel knows the tricks of the trade in saving money. “If you’re traveling for a long weekend getaway, book between Saturday and Tuesday. If you’re planning a roundtrip, always price two, one-way tickets. It’s not always less expensive, but always worth a try, especially for international flights. If you have a family of five, you’ll get the lowest online price for all five tickets. If you price one ticket at time, savings could be significantly more.”

Ted Friedli also sees travel as a way to give back to the community. In 2010, he founded Kick Cancer Overboard (www.kickcanceroverboard.org), a nonprofit organization that has given away almost 300 free cruises to people whose lives have been affected by cancer.

For more information, you can call Excel Travel, at 732-571-1960 or visit: www.exceltravel.com.

 

Jordana

Avery Grant receives Chamber’s 2020 Humanitarian Award

Long Branch — The Greater Long Branch Chamber of Commerce has announced it will award its 2020 Humanitarian Award to

Avery W. Grant, P.E.

Grant will be honored at the 86th Annual Business Awards Dinner will be held on Friday, March 20, at the Ocean Place Resort & Spa, 1 Ocean Blvd. along with others who will be recognized for their contributions of Long Branch.

Grant is a retired U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel, and he built his home in Long Branch, preparing to go to the Vietnam War in 1967.

He is a member of St. Luke’s United Methodist Church in Long Branch, where he has served as Lay Leader, Sunday School Teacher, Men’s Club President, and Lay Member to the State Conference. For 27 years, he has coordinated the Free Community Easter Sunday and Thanksgiving Day Dinners, serving 200 meals and delivering 150 meals to homes and Senior public housing residences

As a Long Branch School Board member for 20 years, he assisted in getting the state to build the five new schools, and to renovate the Historic High School. For the Air Force ROTC Ca-dets, Grant acquired two Electronic Flight Simulators for their training, and assisted one cadet in getting a flying license. He brings in prominent persons, some whom are graduates to interact with the students.

He is the Chairman of the New Jersey School Board Association Task Force for Student Achievement.

Avery, as Executive Director of the Long Branch Concerned Citizens Coalition (Volunteers) and working with the New Jersey Department of Environment Protection, is having the 18-acre contaminated Long Branch Avenue Site remediated. The Coalition caused the contaminated Seaview Manor and Grant Court Public Housing demolished and rebuilt, and in Health law-suits, 292 citizens received from $20,000 to $200,000.

As the Chairman of the Monmouth County Advisory Council on Aging, endorsed the start of the Senior Citizens Area Transportation System and Meals on Wheels. He also coordinated the Swine Flu inoculations of Long Branch Senior Citizens, and started the County Senior Citizens Picnic. And, now, is a County Fair Housing Board Member.

He was the 1975-1977 Chairman of the Monmouth County Cotillion, conducted in the Asbury Park Convention Hall, awarding scholarships to high school seniors.

As a State-Certified Volunteer In Probation, Grant counseled and helped Long Branch youths who had committed minor infractions, and thus avoided confinement.

Appointed by Mayor Cioffi, Avery, as the Long Branch VFW Post Commander, with Jack Kiely, coordinated a very successful month-long honoring and fundraising for four Long Branch Vietnam War amputees.

For three years, Grant, with Thomas Armour, produced and published the free, bi-weekly, Community Newspaper, an African American publications of 5,000 circulation.

* * *

Receiving the prestigious Libutti Award this year are Esther Cohen, managing partner of Cedars & Beeches Inn, Long Branch and Tonya Garcia, Director of the Long Branch Free Public Library.

Other awards being presented that night: The President’s Award to Mr. & Mrs. Feliciano of FEM Real Estate for the accessible beach access; Invest in Long Branch award to The Kushner Company for The Wave Resort, and the Business Improvement Awards to Long Branch Distillery, The Butcher’s Block, Grubman 57-61 Brighton Avenue, and Beach Bee Meadery.

Dinner tickets are available at $115 per person. Please contact the Chamber at info@longbranchchamber.org or 732-222-0400. Tickets can also be purchased through Eventbrite: chamberawardsdinner.eventbrite.­com.

Ocean Twp. and Shore Regional play for Ollie

By Walter J. O’Neill, Jr

Ocean Township — It was a breath of fresh air to attend the 1st Annual Mya Hoops Classic basketball games at Ocean Township High School on Fe. 1. The games were organized in remembrance of Mya Lin Terry, who passed away at the tender age of 10, after battling cancer for nearly six years.

Before the start of the 1st Annual Mya’s Hoops Classic basketball game players on the Ocean Township HS squad presented Ollie Daneshagar, who is fighting cancer, with a game ball. His mom, Bethany is a teacher at OTHS.

Mya would have been a member of the Ocean Township High School Class of 2020. For many years the Mya’s Cup has been an annual fundraising game organized by the girls’ soccer team at the high school. This year, the boys’ basketball team decided to host the 1st Annual Mya’s Hoops Classic. They invited Shore Regional High School to participate in a doubleheader.

“Welcome to the 1st ever Mya’s Hoop Classic. We are so happy that Shore Regional is able to share this special day and event with us. Their support means so much,” said Kelly Terry, Mya’s mom. Kelly is also a graduate of OTHS Class of 1985 and President of the Mya Lin Terry Foundation. “After battling cancer for five and half years, Mya gained her angel wings on April 10, 2013 at the age of 10. Mya continues to inspire us to make a difference and what better way to continue to honor Mya’s memory than to support other pediatric cancer warriors in our community.”

Pediatric cancer is not rare. In fact, Monmouth County has the third highest rate of cancer in the state. “We believe there is something going on here, whether it is caused by contaminated soil, air quality or water quality, for some reason our children have a higher rate of cancer than most other places,” said Kelly. She is also leading the Monmouth County “Go Gold” effort. It has been documented that our county’s proximity to water pollution from New York City, left over superfund sites at Fort Monmouth and the Deal Test Site might have a correlation to higher cancer rates.

Mya Linn Terry Foundation has helped 12 local children who have or were battling cancer. Kelly listed the cancer warriors helped by the foundation; Lily, class of 2034, Carter, class of 2032, Ollie, 2033, Xander, class of 2022, Augustus, class of 2022, Toril, class of 2022, Alyssal class of 2017, Alisonl, class of 2019 and Jake, class of 2020.

“Our angels were Mya class 2020, Logan 2025, and Matthew 2022,” added Kelly.

This year, the foundation will be helping Ollie Daneshagar. “We are showing our love and support for an Ocean Township resident and son of an OTHS teacher, Bethany,” Kelly said.

Before the start of the first game several of the Ocean Township players presented Ollie with a game ball. “This is what I hope to be the start of a fantastic tradition here at Ocean and I am proud to be a part of it, kids helping kids, and kicking cancer’s butt, one hoop, one game, at a time,” Kelly added.

 

 

 

Sea Bright names two redevelopers

By Neil Schulman

Sea Bright — The borough has designated redevelopers for two areas in the borough, along the riverfront and where the old school used to be.

These vacant lots on downtown River Street have been declared an area in need of redevelopment, and the borough council has chosen The Break at Sea Bright, which has proposed turning the former school lot into a boutique hotel.

At the Feb. 4 Borough Council meeting, council approved two resolutions announcing the redevelopers for these areas.

Brooks Real Estate Development was designated to redevelop a group of properties along the Shrewsbury River from Front Street to River Street; and The Break At Sea Bright for the lots by River Street off Ocean Avenue.

This is a process which has been going on for several years.

In 2016, the Borough Council asked the Unified Planning Board to examine if these two areas met the definition of places in need of redevelopment. Declaring an area in need of redevelopment allows the borough more control over what gets built, making it easier to change zoning regulations. It also can give municipalities the ability to use eminent domain to take private properties.

Hearings were held last year, where the majority of residents present said they were in favor of both proposed uses for redevelopment.

Council voted 5-1 in favor of both resolutions on Tuesday, with Councilman William “Jack” Keeler voting no.

The project off River Street, referred to as The Break At Sea Bright, calls for turning the former school property into a boutique hotel. The vacant lot on the corner of Highway 36 and River Street, currently used for parking, would be converted into a business on the first floor and housing above it.

The resolution approving it noted that there have been other proposals for the land.

The school lot is owned by River Street Realty, which came to the Planning Board with a proposal to divide that lot into eight subdivisions with housing on each. There had been complaints from council and residents that no progress was being made on the lot.

In June, the Planning Board said that River Street Realty had to present them with detailed plans for how the subdivision would work within six months. They also needed to demolish the school building, which had sat vacant for decades and was considered in poor conditions. The school came down last autumn, but the details of the subdivision never came.

“River Street Realty LLC has never perfected the subdivision,” the resolution designating The Break at Sea Bright redeveloper for the lot said. “Mayor and Council have now concluded it is appropriate to designate the Break at Sea Bright, LLC, as the redeveloper of the Downtown Properties.”

For Brooks Real Estate Development, which has proposed turning the riverfront into The Haven At Sea Bright — a series of houses and townhouses, as well as a new park, dog walk, public parking and boardwalk along the riverfront — eminent domain isn’t going to be needed. All the properties in the area are owned by a single company which wants to see this happen.

Trip Brooks, known locally for his development work in revitalizing Asbury Park, is involved with both projects.

 

 

 

Oft glossed over history of NJ slavery brought to light

By Coleen Burnett

Eatontown — Kicking off Black History Month, the Eatontown Historical Committee held a lecture on February 2 about the history of slavery in New Jersey at the Community Center. It’s part of the Borough’s 350th Anniversary celebration. It is a history that is fraught with confusion, misinformation — and more than a few surprises.

Historian Rick Geffken talks about the long history of slavery in New Jersey.

Guest lecturer Rick Geffken told The Link that teaching the history of slavery in the state has been an exercise in glossing facts over, mostly through sheer ignorance, that has been passed down through many generations.

New Jersey was, indeed, a slave state. Perhaps worse, New Jersey was the last northern state to ratify the Emancipation Proclamation — in 1866.

“It was always down south, not up here,” he said.

Geffken said he attended a Catholic grammar school in northern New Jersey. “It wasn’t on the curriculum. They were more interested in teaching other stuff. This was the 1950’s. It wasn’t considered important.”

That is changing. A few years ago, the state passed the Armistead Law, which mandates that black history has to be infused into each school’s curriculum.

Geffken said the entire subject is complicated. “It’s complicated {in terms of} the fact that not only don’t people know it, there’s a great degree of denial.”

He said challenging someone’s lifelong beliefs is a very hard process. “There are racists who don’t want to believe that this happened,” he continued. “If they admit that this happened, then they have to explain their position. They won’t do it,” he said.

“There are people who do not want to believe what is uncomfortable.”

But in the end, Geffken said, the tide is changing, especially in the black community. He encourages them to write — and publish — their individual stories to help fill in the blanks. In other words, to get the true experience, write it down and pass it on to others.

“I can be as empathetic as I want, but I can’t feel it. I know it and I see it, but I can’t have the same experience,” he said.

A slide from Rick Geffken’s presentation looking at slavery in Monmouth County, and the abolition movement.

 

 

City Hall receives piece of American history

Long Branch — On Friday, the City of Long Branch got a valuable delivery from America’s past: the personal china cabinet of the country’s 18th President, Ulysses S. Grant.

Standing next to the installed cabinet, left to right are: Janice Grace, Mayor John Pallone, Harold Josefowitz, Lisa Kelly, and Jim Foley.

A bold and innovative soldier, Grant led the U.S. Army to win the Civil War. From the start of his presidency in 1869 to his death in 1885, Grant spent his summers in Long Branch, which established the city’s reputation as the summer resort capital of the nation. Though the cottage he relaxed in no longer stands, some of his personal effects remain, including the black walnut cabinet now in City Hall.

“While the Seven Presidents Museum undergoes renovations, City Hall will display President Grant’s china cabinet to the public. We hope this major artifact from our past sparks interest in Long Branch’s rich history, and compliments the city’s Winslow Homer Display,” said James Foley, President of the Long Branch Historical Museum Association.

City Hall boasts a number of 19th century prints about President Grant’s stay in Long Branch, which the public can view in the building. There is a photo of Grant’s summer home on Ocean Avenue in Elberon as well as a photo with his family in front of the home.

Other prints on display include President Grant leading a dance at the Stetson house, also known as the West End Hotel. There is also a scene by Thomas Nast, a New Jersey illustrator, which pokes fun of Grant as the King on the bluff at his Elberon home, and includes the Democratic Party symbol of the donkey. Nast popularized the donkey and elephant as symbols of the national political parties.

“Long Branch has a promising future, an exciting present, and a fascinating past. We are eager to show off all three at City Hall,” said Mayor John Pallone.