Category Archives: Local Life

A look, in photos, of latest area events, local everyday people and places.

Going Retro with a Rumson Police Chief Snapshot

 Rumson Police Chief Scott Paterson at the Aj.J. Bruder Memorial Rumson Run.  Photo/Elaine Van Develde
Rumson Police Chief Scott Paterson at the Aj.J. Bruder Memorial Rumson Run.
Photo/Elaine Van Develde

 

In our Retro Pic of the Day today, we’re giving equal time to Rumson Police Chief Scott Paterson.

We looked back at Rumson and Fair Haven mayors John Ekdahl and Ben Lucarelli to take a break from the tragedy in the area with a flashback of a good time at the A.J. Bruder Memorial Rumson Run.

Bruder, as most know, was a well-liked RFH graduate who died very after a long battle with cancer.

The annual run in his memory always sparks up a great time in celebration of Bruder’s life. It’s sunny twist on tragedy. It’s a day when people in the area run, relish life, remember and smile, as A.J. did in his lifetime.

So, here’s to Chief Paterson’s participation on that day!

Getting Festive with Rumson, Fair Haven Tree Lightings

By Elaine Van Develde

It’s time to haul out the community holiday spirit and get set for the Rumson-Fair Haven area kick-offs to the season of Santa and all the festivities that come to town with him.

First, on Friday evening, at 5:30 p.m., Jolly Ol’ Saint Nick will arrive via fire truck at Fair Haven’s Memorial Park on the corner of Fair Haven and River roads. After the initial greetings, Santa will pose for photos with children, according to a release from the Fair Haven Business Association.

The tree will be lit at 6 p.m. and there will be music, food and activities for the kids, the release added.

Throughout the lighting and Santa’s arrival, from 5 to 7 p.m., the release said, there will be a stroll through the River Road East business district during which businesses will be open and featuring a collaborative open house, a newer tradition in Fair Haven.

The business district will be open on Saturday and Sunday for shopping.

Then, in Rumson on Sunday the borough will hold it’s annual traditional tree lighting and festivities in Victory Park.

The event begins at 5 p.m. and will feature, as usual, the Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School Tower Singers, Deane-Porter’s third grade chorus and Tim McLoone & the Shirleys with members of Holiday Express.

A Retro Look at RFH Football

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Back in the day, in the 1970s, Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School’s big football rivalry game, always against Red Bank Catholic, started just about everyone’s Thanksgiving Day.

People went to the traditional game, then home for Thanksgiving dinner. The homecoming dance was the night before, when all the recent graduates would reunite. And the announcement of the new homecoming king and queen came on the football field at the game’s half-time.

Take a look back with us in the Retro Pic of the Day photos above. Do you recognize anyone on the team? Some are still in the area. Who were the football stars of the day?

A Rewind to Oktoberfest

It's become a new tradition to get costumed to the hilt for Oktoberfest in Fair Haven, as these festive festival goers demonstrated in October. Photo/Elaine Van Develde
It’s become a new tradition to get costumed to the hilt for Oktoberfest in Fair Haven, as these festive festival goers demonstrated in October. Photo/Elaine Van Develde

Do you remember this year’s Oktoberfest?

If not, here’s a refresher. This group of costumed Oktoberfest celebrants seems to have gotten bigger by the year.

There’s a lot of authentic lederhosen in the group.

For a full look back, check out the original gallery by clicking here.

Looking Back: Another Fair Gentleman

Dave Ballatori, RFH Class of 2006, helps out at the Fair Haven Firemen's Fair. Photo/Elaine Van Develde
Dave Ballatori, RFH Class of 2006, helps out at the Fair Haven Firemen’s Fair. Photo/Elaine Van Develde

It’s time for some more warm summer thoughts mixed with a little peek into a popular scene and its people.

We’re also sort of answering a challenge.

When we ran our Retro Pic of the Day not long ago that featured Fair Haven Firemen’s Fair regular at the Big Six tent, lifetime Fair Havenite Tom Kirman, it ended up getting more hits than any story or post in the, albeit brief, history of Rumson-Fair Haven Retrospect — more than 1,000 and counting.

We also posted a little blurb announcing that fun fact. Dave Ballatori, RFH grad and co-worker of Kirman’s at the tent, gave his own, let’s say, five cents worth on the post and Kirman’s apparent popularity.

If you’ve frequented Fairwinds Deli over the years, as many have, you probably know Dave.

So, let’s see just how popular he is. Will his photo get more clicks or come close to Kirman’s click count?

A Play on RFH’s Past Shows

This was a rehearsal for Neil Simon's 'Plaza Suite' at Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School circa 1977. Photo/screen shot of RFH yearbook.
This was a rehearsal for Neil Simon’s ‘Plaza Suite’ at Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School circa 1977. Photo/screen shot of RFH yearbook.

As Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School (RFH) actors readied for their production of Neil Simon’s Plaza Suite in 1977, more of the same is happening at the high school now.

The Tower Players are gearing up for their production of Miracle on 34th Street on Dec. 12, 13 and 14.

There’s always been a fall and spring production at the high school.

In the interest of full disclosure, yes, this editor is pictured here rehearsing for Plaza Suite. Regrettably, one of the actors is now deceased — Billy Weithas. RIP, Billy. Lisa Golder and Danny Olshansky are still with us; and both were at the RFH Class of ’78 reunion. Danny even apologized for dropping five pages worth of lines on me, saying he was never an actor and had no idea why he was cast.

I told him then, and will again, it was like a terror train, but you are soooo forgiven! This editor just had to roll a serving cart around the stage for about 15 minutes and just ramble. Good thing I never run out of anything to say! Poor guy.

OK, now the not-so-secret secret is out. Tell us your tale of being in an RFH production.

Email me at evd@rfhretro.com.

A Look Back on a Sunny Donovan’s Kind of Day

An empty tiki bar sits on the spot where Donovan's was bustling before Hurricane Sandy. Photo/Elaine Van Develde
An empty tiki bar sits on the spot where Donovan’s was bustling before Hurricane Sandy. Photo/Elaine Van Develde

Rumson-Fair Haven area people, it’s cold outside!

So, here’s a peek back to the summer of 2014 on Sea Bright beach to warm you up a little.

The volleyball nets were up, beach bums were sunning, swimming and surfing and a reminder of what’s to come with the rebirth of Donovan’s Reef sat barren on the beach.

The mainstay locals’ beach bar, obliterated by Hurricane Sandy, was slated for a small preview-like comeback over the summer. A tiki bar was set up on the beach but never quite made it to full-swing operational mode.

Word is that the iconic bar will be back in much different form for the summer of 2015.

A Revival: Holy Cross Church

By Elaine Van Develde

When it comes to Holy Cross Church in Rumson, you could say it’s a case of that old Peter Allen song, Everything Old is New Again — and, maybe, vice versa.

The long-anticipated, beleaguered church restoration/expansion project broke ground in the spring of 2013.

When portions at the rear of the 1885 white-shingled house of worship were demolished, leaving only its facade and room for the expansion, the sight of the hollowed, one-dimensional flat structure was a view of a different kind.

The foundation for the expansion was blessed on Nov. 3, 2013.

Since then, a lot of building, recreating the designs of Charles Keely, has been done. Slated for completion by the end of 2014, the compromise of what was originally to be an even bigger Holy Cross is looking nearly complete.

Take a look at our photo gallery above. Just click on any photo to enlarge and scroll through using the arrows to the left or right. 

Past Life of the Atlantic Hotel

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By Elaine Van Develde

It was called the Atlantic Hotel — the spot on Fair Haven Road in Fair Haven where the old Lock Stock & Barrel and Varsity Club sat. It’s now Navoo Grill Club.

As the Atlantic Hotel, the place had a history rich with visits from famous producers, Vaudevillian actors and millionaires who traveled via steamship to the banks of the Navesink River for respite or to entertain some more.

Last year, Fair Haven was given unearthed registers of the establishment dating back to the early 1900s.

On one page, in particular, the registration of Long Acre Quartette decorated a page, noting that it was the Fourth of July, 1908.

The troupe hailed from “N.Y. City” and its members listed their names followed by “and wife.”

Funny how the women were nameless back in the day. Take a look. Do you recognize any of these names?

A Look Back at Our Fair Ladies

Patty Overman and Ann Dupree at the Fair Haven Firemen's Fair. Photo/Elaine Van Develde
Patty Overman and Ann Dupree at the Fair Haven Firemen’s Fair. Photo/Elaine Van Develde

These two ladies have been a staple at the Fair Haven Firemen’s Fair for probably close to half a century — not that they look it.

They really don’t. In fact, Patty Overman and Ann Dupree pretty much look the exact same as the first day they set foot on the fairgrounds.

Who knows the name of the booth the two have manned for years?