Captain Kevin Flaherty named as new Secaucus police chief
After serving as the officer in charge of the Secaucus Police Department since December 2014, Captain Kevin Flaherty was officially named as the new police chief at the Town Council meeting on Tuesday, April 14.
The council interviewed four candidates for the position, according to Councilman Gary Jeffas, and came to a “unanimous consent” to offer the job to Flaherty.
“We felt that Kevin was the most qualified,” said Mayor Michael Gonnelli.
Flaherty took on the role of officer in charge of the department when the previous acting chief, John Cerny, abruptly resigned after filling the position for six months, claiming that he was being “punished and denied the chief of police title” for political reasons.
A formal swearing-in for Flaherty will take place at the next Town Council meeting. “We’re sure that Kevin is going to do a great job moving the department forward,” said Jeffas.
Library to hold dedication in memory of Edna Mondadori on April 19
Lifelong library supporter Edna Mondadori will be honored at a dedication in the library’s children’s department at noon on Sunday, April 19. As Library Director Jenifer May explained, “This weekend’s dedication is intended not only to recognize the overwhelming generosity of the family and friends who made donations in Mrs. Mondadori’s name after her passing last November, but also to celebrate the many ways she contributed to the success of our library and our community throughout her life. We felt that using donations made in her memory to add to our children’s book collection was a fitting tribute, as Mrs. Mondadori was an avid reader who believed in sharing her love of books and reading with all those around her, especially children. She understood that love of reading and learning is deeply entwined with academic achievement and personal happiness, and she worked to instill that love in the children of our community.”
Mondadori was instrumental in the founding of the library’s extended story hour program for pre-school children, which has been often referred to as “library school” and is still running after more than forty years. She was also one of the first to volunteer with the library’s long-running Literacy and ESL Tutoring program and the co-founder of the library’s afternoon book club. Her love of reading extended outside of the library, as she also volunteered at Clarendon School, reading to special education students.
All members of the community are invited to attend the dedication and the reception following the unveiling of the memorial plaque and new children’s book collection. For more information about the dedication ceremony or information on making a donation to the children’s fiction collection in memory of Edna Mondadori, contact May at (201) 330-2083 x4011 or email email@example.com.
Party to support the Animal Shelter on April 19
Come show your support for the Secaucus Animal Shelter on Sunday, April 19 from 1 to 4 p.m. in the Harmon Cove Clubhouse at RE/MAX Infinity’s first annual “Help Me Find My Fur-Ever Home” event. Refreshments will be served and a live DJ will be playing music. Numerous items will be raffled off to raise funds these animals need and deserve. Pups and kitties from the shelter will be showcased at the event.
If you’re interested in helping out with this event, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call (201) 240-8422.
Secaucus launches information hotline
The Town of Secaucus has launched an information hotline to answer general questions. Contact Christine Smith at (201) 330-2099 from Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. for assistance.
The Secaucus information hotline will provide information regarding municipal regulations, events, games, or other happenings, including licensing, permits, games, registrations, municipal locations and hours of operations, and more.
Learn on April 23 about Climate Change: Fact or Fiction?
Is climate change real? Does the Secaucus experience with Hurricane Sandy prove it’s a fact? Does the recent cold winter make you wonder?
People in Secaucus can get answers to their questions at a public meeting at the Episcopal Church of Our Saviour on Thursday, April 23 at 7 p.m. At the program, Secaucus Environmental Coordinator Amanda Nesheiwat will offer a visual presentation of the outlook of climate scientists. As a participant in major climate change conferences in Doha, Qatar, and Rio de Janeiro as a youth delegate, Nesheiwat has been on the front lines of the battle to control climate change.
Everyone experiences the weather daily where they live and work over a long period of time. What they don’t experience, and can’t experience, is climate hundreds of miles from them, even continents away. Climate scientists deal with climate on the grandest scale, involving the whole planet, going back hundreds of thousands of years, and projected far into the future. While local temperature change may be minimal, it can be much greater in some areas or some times, melting ice caps, changing weather patterns, causing catastrophic droughts and floods, and raising sea levels.
The local Episcopal Church is hosting this meeting on climate change because the subject has been elevated to high level as a moral issue by their church’s presiding bishop, The Rt. Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori. She recently said climate change presents a moral imperative akin to that of the civil rights movement in terms of the impacts on the poorest and most vulnerable around the world.
Arbor Day celebration is April 24
The Secaucus Shade Tree Committee cordially invites all residents to attend the town’s Arbor Day celebration on Friday, April 24 from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. at the Huber Street School playground.
Hygiene Project to celebrate 10th anniversary on April 26
Wrap 4 A Smile Foundation Inc. (also known as The Hygiene Project) is celebrating its 10th anniversary at Fiesta in Wood Ridge on Sunday, April 26 from 5 to 8 p.m.
The program includes entertainment, a buffet, cash bar, silent auction, and an award presentation. The cost is $35 per person; $25 for children 12 years old or under. Come and join the effort to raise funds to continue the great work distributing personal hygiene kits to those in need. To date the Hygiene Project has distributed over 120,000 hygiene kits to aid emergency services, homeless community, international medical and dental missions, and soldiers serving overseas. Payments for dinner or donations can be made online at www.hygieneproject.org. For more information call (201) 522-1968 or (201) 320-8491.
Eat burgers and support the Fire Department on April 26
Secaucus Fire Department Tower Ladder 2 is holding its fifth annual pasta dinner on Sunday, April 26 from 1 to 5 p.m. The event takes place at Burger Stop, 333 Meadowlands Parkway. The cost for adults is $10; children 10 and under are $5.
Please come out and support your local fire company.
Drug-Free Community Coalition launches new website
The Secaucus Coalition for a Healthy and Drug-Free Community (SCHDFC) announced the launch of their new website, www.drugfreesecaucus.org.
The coalition invites all Secaucus residents to visit the site to read their latest press releases and news updates, learn about upcoming events, and much more. SCHDFC provides substance abuse prevention information, resources, and the most updated statistics for Secaucus.
The finalists of the Drug-Free Communities Logo Design Contest will be announced on the site soon. The website will continue to be developed over the coming weeks so check back for more updates and information.
NJSEA receives grant to fund Mill Creek Marsh trail enhancement
The New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority (NJSEA) has received a $3,870 joint grant from the Bergen County and National Audubon Societies to fund new plantings at Mill Creek Marsh in Secaucus. Native shrubs, grasses and perennials will be installed at the entrance to the marsh’s trail and along the nature path to create habitats for songbirds and butterflies.
“The plantings funded by this grant will benefit Mill Creek Marsh both environmentally and aesthetically by increasing wildlife habitat while heightening public enjoyment of the Meadowlands’ natural beauty,” said Wayne Hasenbalg, president and CEO of the NJSEA.
The plantings are part of the Mill Creek Marsh trail renovation project to repair damage incurred during several past storms, including Superstorm Sandy. The trail is currently closed and will reopen in the fall. Approximately 300 native herbaceous shrubs and perennials, including Red twig dogwood, Spicebush, Coneflower and Black-eyed Susans, will grow at the entrance to and along the trail. These plant species will help attract butterflies, which are not currently abundant in the area.
Hundreds of nature lovers each year traverse the Mill Creek Marsh trail and paddle in the marsh itself. The scenic, one-mile path provides breathtaking views of the wetlands and the New York City skyline that frames the 209-acre natural area. The dozens of Ancient White Cedar stumps that dot the marsh are the last remnants of a primeval forest that once covered a third of the Meadowlands for hundreds of years. The stumps serve as perches for egrets and shorebirds, making the marsh an especially popular destination for bird watchers.
New Alumni Association at HCST
The new Hudson County Schools of Technology Alumni Association will promote communications and connect alumni not only with other alumni, but with current students to help them properly prepare for life after graduation. HCST class of 2005 member Vanessa Cirillo is heading up the formation of the association. “I am thrilled by the opportunity to spearhead the Alumni Association for a school district that gave me so much – I am honored to be able to give back,” said Cirillo.
The Hudson County Schools of Technology Alumni Association is seeking resumes from graduates who wish to join and serve in an executive board capacity. Those who are interested can send a copy of their resume to Silverio A. Vega or Hilda Rodriguez at email@example.com. Tel: (201) 662-6766. Fax: (201) 854-8006.
Seven Secaucus police officers to take part in 2015 Tour de Force 9/11 Memorial Ride
Seven Secaucus police officers will participate in the 2015 Tour de Force’s 9/11 Memorial Ride that will depart Sept. 10 from New York City. The riders will cycle through the lower Hudson Valley, past the lush countryside of Connecticut, and over the rolling hills of Massachusetts where an additional 150 cyclists from the Boston area will join them for the last leg as the tour rolls into Boston Harbor for a modern day tea party. The four-day, 270 mile bicycle ride is a dual purpose event. The ride honors those killed during the 9/11 attacks and raises funds for the families of police officers across the country killed in the line of duty.
This year’s Secaucus Police riders are Lieutenant Carlos Goyenechea, Sergeant Francis Cotter, and Police Officers Marc Schoch, Chris Rinaldi, Kiril Petrov, Christina Prospero, and William Smith.
Each rider must raise a minimum of $1,250 in order to participate in this event. Raffle tickets for the event with the proceeds going to support the seven riders can be purchased from any police officer and will also be sold during the Summer Concerts held Thursday evenings in Buchmuller Park during July and August. “I urge residents to support this cause by purchasing the $10 raffle tickets,” said Kickey. Three prizes will be awarded at the drawing held August 27 at 9 p.m. in Buchmuller Park.
For more information about the 2015 Tour de Force 9/11 Memorial Ride and how it got its start, or to make an online donation in the name of a particular officer, visit www.tourdeforceny.com.
Pontoon boat cruise and canoe tour season to begin in June
The New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority’s (NJSEA) 2015 guided pontoon boat and canoe tours of the Hackensack River are set to launch in June, giving visitors a unique opportunity to experience the amazing natural beauty and wildlife of the Meadowlands up-close while learning about the remarkable history of the river and the region.
For those who have glimpsed the Meadowlands only from the surrounding highways or the window of a commuter train, the NJSEA’s leisurely, two-hour boat tours and three-hour canoe trips reveal a whole new environment including acres of preserved wetlands and a thriving ecosystem, all framed by a spectacular view of the Manhattan skyline.
Expert NJSEA staff narrate the tours. While talking about the Hackensack River estuary’s storied history they point out wildlife along the way. The Hackensack River is a great place from which to see many of the more than 280 bird species that have been documented in the Meadowlands, including 34 on New Jersey’s threatened, endangered and species of special concern lists.
Pontoon boat trips for ages 10 and up launch from River Barge Park in Carlstadt. Canoe tours launch from various locations in Secaucus and Carlstadt. Canoes hold up to three people, and at least one person should have canoeing experience. Reservations are recommended. Canoe tours are $15 per person and the suggested donation for pontoon boat rides is also $15 per person. For more information, call (201) 460-4677 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
For a full schedule or to download a registration form, visit www.njmeadowlands.gov. Registration sheets are also available at the NJSEA offices and the Meadowlands Environment Center, both located in DeKorte Park in Lyndhurst.
Silent auction at Community Ball to honor Library’s 80th Anniversary
Secaucus’ fourth Annual Community Ball will be held on Saturday, May 2 at LaQuinta Inn, 350 Lighting Way. This year’s event will focus on recognizing the 80th anniversary of the Secaucus Public Library, which was March 18, 2015.
Tickets to the event are $50 per person and are now on sale at the Secaucus Public Library at 1379 Paterson Plank Road, the Town Hall at 1203 Paterson Plank Road, and the Recreation Center on Koelle Boulevard. Checks should be made out to “Friends of the Library.”
Dinner will be served with a cash bar available. Music from the 60s and 70s, as well as other classics, will be performed by the band Let’s Be Frank.
A silent auction will take place during the evening. “There are a number of very high end prizes that will be auctioned at the event including sports memorabilia, fantasy vacation travel packages, jewelry and designer products, to name a few,” said Library Director Jenifer May.
Mayor Michael Gonnelli noted that this year’s Community Ball recognizes the library’s anniversary because the library has been bringing people of all ages and backgrounds together with its services, programs and events for 80 years. “The library deserves to be recognized not only for its past service, but for its continuing commitment to Secaucus’s residents and its business community,” he said.
Retired library director Kathy Steffens, assisted by photographer Fred Grafeld, has compiled a 90-minute presentation featuring residents and other individuals who related their experiences of visiting the first Secaucus Public Library that was housed in the attic of the “old” Town Hall back in 1935, as well as the first permanent library building that was located at Plaza Centre Road. The current Secaucus Public Library and Business Resource Center opened in 2003. Steffens said that the taped program will be available for viewing at the event.
May added that a Program Journal will be compiled for that evening and any business or individual interested in purchasing ad space should contact her at the library at (201) 330-2083, Ext. 4011 or at email@example.com.
Senior Citizen Prom 2015 coming up on April 23
The fifth annual Senior Citizen Prom Spring Fling will take place on Thursday, April 23 from 5 to 8 p.m. at Secaucus High School. The event is being sponsored by S.A.I.L. (service, activities, involvement and leadership) and the town of Secaucus.
Come and enjoy music, dancing, food, and fun for the price of a $5 donation to S.A.I.L. Call (201) 865-4422 for reservations or stop by the Senior Center to purchase tickets.
Visit Sands Casino and support the Animal Shelter on April 26
Friends of the Secaucus Animal Shelter is sponsoring its second annual bus trip fundraiser to the Sands Casino in Bethlehem, Pa. on Sunday, April 26. Tickets are $35 and include the bus, $20 in slots, and a $5 meal voucher. All proceeds benefit the Secaucus Animal Shelter.
The bus will leave from the Secaucus Recreation Center, 1200 Koelle Blvd., at 9 a.m. sharp and return to Secaucus at 4:30 p.m. You must be 21 or older and bring a valid government issued photo ID. Make checks payable to “Friends of the Secaucus Animal Shelter.” For information and reservations call Sue Pirro at (201) 563-2161.
Attend a Birding for Beginners (Optics & Field Guides) class on April 19
This free two-hour Birding for Beginners class starts with a short session on field-guide basics and birding optics – from binoculars to spotting scopes – at the Meadowlands Environment Center in DeKorte Park in Lyndhurst, followed by a nature walk in the park. The event takes place on Sunday, April 19 from 1 to 3 p.m.. To register, call (201) 230-4983 or go to www.njmeadowlands.gov and click on “events.”
Enjoy a Third-Tuesday-of-the-Month Nature Walk
Celebrate spring with a free Harrier Meadow bird walk in North Arlington on Tuesday, April 21 from 10 a.m. to noon. Walk around the 70-acre natural area, which is normally closed to the public, and look for ospreys, early warblers and shorebirds, and a snipe or two. The walk starts at 10 a.m. and meets outside the Meadowlands Environment Center (carpools will take participants to the site). To register, call (201) 230-4983 or visit www.njmeadowlands.gov and click on “events.”
Earth Day Walk is on April 22
Celebrate Earth Day by joining in a free two-hour guided nature walk in DeKorte Park in Lyndhurst on April 22. Walk around parts of the park, looking for spring arrivals, bald eagles, and other birds. The walk starts at 10 a.m. outside the Meadowlands Environment Center. To register, call (201) 230-4983 or go to www.njmeadowlands.gov and click on “events.”