Submitted by Olympia School DistrictEileen Thomson will assume the position as President of the Olympia School District School Board.The Olympia School Board will have new leadership once the New Year begins. Outgoing Board President Mark Campeau has passed the gavel to Eileen Thomson, who will take over the duties of Board President at the next Board Meeting on January 14, 2013. Justin Montermini will take over as Vice President of the Board. Thomson has served on the Board since 2008 while Montermini is the newest member of the board having been elected in 2011.At the conclusion of the Board meeting last night the School Board sincerely thanked Mark Campeau for his guidance and leadership as President of the Board over the past year. Campeau provided thoughtful insight and a solid foundation for the board during very difficult budgetary times. He will remain a member of the Board. Facebook19Tweet0Pin0
Highlands– The Twin Lights Historical Society, the friends group associated with the lighthouse, is putting the finishing touches on two long-term projects: a video documentary entitled “You Heard It Here First: the Pledge of Allegiance at the Twin Lights,” and Seeing Stars, a new exhibit featuring historic flags and patriotic artifacts.The documentary is narrated by award-winning actor Ed Asner, an ardent supporter of the Twin Lights; the Seeing Stars exhibit will mark the unveiling of a re-imagined 1,000 square foot museum space. Both projects are expected to be completed sometime in July, according to Mark Stewart, a member of the Historical Society Board.“The Seeing Stars exhibit and museum renovation were significantly sidetracked by Hurricane Sandy,” said Stewart. “The state understandably yanked its funding after the storm, but we decided to push forward ourselves, with our money and the state’s blessing. Our museum consultant estimated a 30 to 40 percent rise in annual attendance and that translated into close to a million dollars a year pumped into the devastated local economies. So what began as a ‘history project’ ended up as a key component in the region’s future,” Stewart continued. Currently, there are more than 80,000 visitors a year to the historic site.According to Stewart, “You Heard It Here First” was a product of the additional research the Historical Society was able to do during the 18-month Sandy-related delay on the museum renovation. The Twin Lights won the Best Documentary award at the 2012 Garden State Film Festival for its first film, which chronicled the history of the lighthouse.The Twin Lights was the setting, in the spring of 1893, for the first public recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance as America’s national oath of loyalty. Several months earlier, the Pledge had been introduced in school systems across the country as a daily exercise for students.Through its production partner, Visionary Video Studios, the Historical Society approached Asner last year, requesting he narrate an introduction to the film. While serving as a judge at the 2012 Film Festival, Asner had offered his support to the lighthouse. When approached, he agreed to do the opening for “You Heard It Here First.”However, after Asner read the script, he indicated his desire to narrate the entire 30-minute film. A recording crew traveled to California and spent the day with the Emmy, SAG and Golden Globe winner in his home. A “teaser” recorded by Asner is currently running on the lighthouse web site.Stewart explained the documentary tells the complex story of how the Pledge of Allegiance came to be – and how it arrived at the Twin Lights – through an unlikely confluence of people and events, including a Boston publishing magnate, a Newark financier, a flag salesman, an unemployed minister and a pair of U.S. presidents.The Pledge of Allegiance was written in 1892 by Francis Bellamy, a leading member of the Christian socialist movement, who at the time was under the employ of The Youth’s Companion, America’s most widely circulated magazine. The Companion was selected by President Benjamin Harrison to create a school program to celebrate the 400th anniversary of Christopher Columbus’s discovery of America and the Pledge was to be recited by children during the raising of the flag.Stewart pointed out: “It is worth noting that most schoolhouses did not fly the American flag at the time. Conveniently, flags of all sizes could be purchased directly from the premium department of The Youth’s Companion.”Over the ensuing months, most school officials continued students’ recitation of the Pledge each day. After Grover Cleveland defeated Harrison in the 1892 presidential election, he supported the idea of making the Pledge of Allegiance America’s national oath of loyalty.The Twin Lights was selected as the ideal place for its “unveiling” – it was the first piece of America immigrants glimpsed over the horizon as they approached New York harbor, and it was home to an enormous 135-foot Liberty Pole flying the American flag. The Liberty Pole was the idea of Newark financier William McDowall, founder of the Sons of the American Revolution, who hoped to stir a resurgence of patriotism in the country. The event took place on April 25, 1893, and featured an international naval revue that passed in front of the lighthouse on its way into New York. The date was picked to coincide with the opening of the Chicago World’s Fair.“It is a very complex story,” Stewart explained. “We are telling it from an entirely new perspective, with a lot of new information and resources. And how lucky we are to have the generous participation of Mr. Asner in this project. Better yet, some of what we’ve discovered during the making of this film has already gotten us thinking about our next documentary, this one about the search for New Jersey’s most astounding historical artifact. It’s a story only a handful of people know.”The Pledge of Allegiance – and the Twin Lights’ rediscovered role in its evolution – will be a focal point of the upcoming Seeing Stars exhibit, which is scheduled to run through the fall of 2016. “You Heard It Here First” will be available for purchase online and in the Twin Lights Museum Store.To watch Asner’s teaser, for more information on the Seeing Stars exhibit, or for the lighthouse’s hours of operation, visit www.twinlightslighthouse.com.
By Chris Rotolo |MIDDLETOWN – Residents of the Middletown adult community Shady Oaks say it is not unusual to encounter the flashing lights and blaring sirens of an ambulance along West Front Street, on its rush to Riverview Medical Center in Red Bank.A concept plan to attract people to newly created soccer fields at nearby Stevenson Park should consider the traffic impact on the busy road, said Shady Oaks resident John Tocco at a township meeting Oct. 15.“Regardless of what you may believe about the area, you’re not living there and you’re not driving the road every day,” said Tocco. “I am. And the traffic is already unbearable and it’s a direct route to the Riverview hospital. There’s no question that when that park is crowded with visitors it will prevent an ambulance from getting to that hospital.”Middletown Township is seeking to create youth sports fields at 130-acre Stevenson Park, located on West Front Street, to help alleviate pressure on its other sports fields. The undeveloped park has the capacity to accommodate up to nine fields and 350 parking spaces, according to a $1.5 million proposal recently presented by township administrator Anthony P. Mercantante for consideration. For now, the township is seeking only to build just two fields, and is applying for a $250,000 Open Space matching grant from the county for the funding.Mercantante acknowledged the group’s desire for a traffic study, but conducting one in that area would be “sort of pointless,” he said.“We have parks all over town, some of which have many more facilities and attract many more people than would happen at Stevenson Park,” Mercantante said, referencing multisport complexes like Bodman Park off the highly trafficked Navesink River Road, Fairview Fields on Oak Hill Road, which is crossed by two rail lines, and McMahon Park, a North Middletown location in a residential area.When the concept plans for this project emerged in September, both Mercantante and Mayor Kevin M. Settembrino agreed that the township had great need for additional fields and that Stevenson Park is one of the last places in Middletown to place a meaningful cluster of playing fields.Deputy Mayor Anthony P. Fiore, a coach with the Middletown Soccer Club, said parks are most frequented on weekends, rather than during the week when roadways are congested with commuter traffic. He also remarked that the four soccer fields at West Front Street Park – a patch of green space at the intersection with Crawfords Corner Road – “don’t get anywhere close to 100 cars” at peak use, adding that “despite what anyone may think, there is a need (for these fields).”To reduce disturbances for neighbors, the plans do not include LED lighting towers and speaker systems.Linda Alonso has lived at Shady Oaks for five years and said the disturbance of the tranquil Stevenson Park setting with serene open space and lakeside views would be the most detrimental byproduct of this project, which proposes the potential development of nine fields in three phases of construction.“It’s not just residents of Shady Oaks who are concerned, it’s all of Lincroft. This would be the destruction of a piece of heaven. It breaks my heart to think about,” Alonso said.Fiore moved to suppress residents perceptions that nine fields were guaranteed for the site, emphasizing that though the concept plan did show nine fields could be designed to fit in the parcel, a project of that magnitude is not in the budget.“Ultimately, we don’t have the money for nine soccer fields, we just don’t. We have the money for two. That’s what the grant application is for,” said Fiore, referencing the $250,000 Monmouth County Open Space match grant Middletown would use to fund the construction of two fields. “This is the frustrating part about misinformation.”Resident Margaret Gordon questioned whether such a development would have environmental impacts, with potential fertilizer chemicals or pesticides used for routine field maintenance seeping into the nearby wetlands and Shadow Lake.Gordon’s comments prompted committeeman Tony S. Perry to discuss alternate sites for the two proposed fields, including Bayview Elementary School on Leonardville Road, where Middletown’s recreational flag football league currently plays.Perry described two lightly used baseball fields toward the back end of the school property that are “completely overgrown. The backstops and benches are completely rusted. And I think it would be a prime location for two multisport fields,” he said, stating that turf fields could be used not only for soccer, but flag football, lacrosse, field hockey and more.A development project at Bayview would require a shared service agreement between the Township Committee and the Middletown Board of Education.Perry also said he and Mercantante are spearheading a separate potential shared service agreement between the Township and Brookdale Community College for the use of their various fields.“If Brookdale is not utilizing certain fields (because they are out of season), we might be able to have our young athletes go play and practice at Brookdale. We’re still working out those details but I hope to bring that to a close fairly soon.”Denise Thompson, a volunteer manager with the Middletown Soccer Club and Monmouth United, applauded the efforts to find alternative locations for this development project, noting that without the installation of LED lighting – which is not included in the concept plan – the Stevenson Park proposal does not help local soccer players in the fall season.“I’m in a unique position here, because I live right next to (Stevenson Park), but I have two soccer players, 10 and 13 years old. These fields are not usable to us in the fall without lights because most coaches work during the day. This proposal doesn’t help us in the fall when we are most crunched for space,” Thompson said.Further discussion is expected on the matter at future meetings.This article was first published in the Oct. 18-24, 2018 print edition of The Two River Times.
WARREN‘S VENEDA ON TRACK FOR ADORATIONIs being outside of Beholder in Saturday’s Adoration Stakes an advantage for Warren’s Veneda?That question will be answered when the two square off in the Grade III, $100,000 race for fillies and mares, 3 and up, at 1 1/16 miles. Warren’s Veneda drew post position five to Beholder’s four in the field reduced to six with the scratch of Cast in Silver.“That’s the same question Ben Warren asked me,” trainer Craig Lewis said of the owner/breeder of Warren’s Veneda, who is named for Ben’s late wife, Veneda. Warren’s Veneda disappointed as the odds-on favorite in the Grade I Vanity Stakes on May 9, when she was in quest of her fourth straight stakes win.“You guys must think alike,” Lewis said. “I’ll give you the same answer. It doesn’t matter where we are. It doesn’t matter where Beholder is. The only plausible explanation for Warren’s Veneda’s third-place finish in the Vanity is, the pace was a little funky, she was giving away five pounds to the winner (My Sweet Addiction) and she only got beat a length. It wasn’t like she got annihilated.“But the bottom line is, she got beat, just like all of them do on occasion. All I can say is, I’m happy to have her and she’s put together quite a few good races for us, but we can’t expect any horse to run out of its mind every time it comes over.“That’s the bottom line. That being said, maybe she’s tailing off. We don’t know.”The field for the Adoration: My Monet, Gonzalo Nicolas, 15-1; Grandiose Tactics, Drayden Van Dyke, 20-1; Beholder, Gary Stevens, 2-5; Warren’s Veneda, Tyler Baze, 5-2; Wild in the Saddle, Rafael Bejarano, 8-1; and Oscar Party, Santiago Gonzalez, 20-1. John Brocklebank1544127%$181,540 Kristin Mulhall2045020%$117,300 Rafael Bejarano13733282124%$1,417,868 Flavien Prat11521231118%$1,267,360 Philip D’Amato49147629%$754,770 Jerry Hollendorfer56714713%$519,204 Mario Gutierrez4273817%$334,748 TrainerSts1st2nd3rdWin%Money Won FINISH LINES: Trainer Simon Callaghan still hopes to make the Los Alamitos Derby on July 4 with Firing Line, despite the fact that the Kentucky Derby runner-up missed a scheduled workout Saturday due to a sore right foot. “It took four days to get right, but he’ll be back on schedule,” Callaghan said. “We’re still looking at the Los Al Derby. It’s going to be little tighter now but I think we still should be able to make it.” . . . Bolo, ticketed for the grassy Belmont Derby on July 4, worked four furlongs on Santa Anita’s main track Friday in 48.80 for Carla Gaines . . . On Thursday, Wild Dude (five furlongs in 1:01.20) and Sahara Sky (six furlongs in 1:14.20) each worked for Jerry Hollendorfer, who plans to run them in the Grade I, $300,000 Triple Bend Stakes at seven furlongs on June 27 . . . Frank Mirahmadi, track announcer at Oaklawn Park and Monmouth Park currently filling in for vacationing Trevor Denman at Santa Anita, will be Tom Quigley‘s guest handicapper Saturday in the East Paddock Gardens at 11:20 a.m. Sunday’s guest will be Santa Anita morning line oddsmaker Jon White . . . Attention Triple Crown hero American Pharoah: Of the 19 horses with the top Beyers on the main track at a mile or over, you are not listed. However, three horses you dusted on the track, Materiality, Upstart and Dortmund, are. FIRST 5,000 FANS TO RECEIVE TRIPLE CROWN PRINT SATURDAYSanta Anita will provide the first 5,000 attendees Saturday a beautiful American Pharoah Triple Crown Champion collectable print, free of charge with paid General Admission. Each item will be accompanied by a protective plastic roll-up sleeve.The print showcases the Bob Baffert-conditioned Triple Crown Champ and jockey Victor Espinoza in three must-see shots–winning the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes–and thereby becoming racing’s first Triple Crown winner in 37 years this past Saturday. (All photos were shot by acclaimed equine photographer Skip Dickstein).First post time Saturday at Santa Anita is 12:30 p.m. Admission gates open at 10:30 a.m. (Please note, the American Pharoah Triple Crown Champion poster will not be available in Santa Anita’s Infield Area). Richard Mandella36108428%$726,540 Joseph Talamo1172192418%$825,498 John Sadler5359109%$292,974 Mark Glatt4657711%$264,134 Bruce Headley1341231%$117,490 Felipe Valdez9381489%$356,540 Carla Gaines2144119%$202,830 Mike Smith3578420%$613,296 WILD IN THE SADDLE STEPS UP IN ADORATIONWinless in five starts on grass including the Fran’s Valentine on May 23, Wild in the Saddle returns to the main track Saturday in the Grade III Adoration Stakes against the likes of Beholder and Warren’s Veneda.Wild in the Saddle finished sixth in the Fran’s Valentine after attending the pace in the one-mile grass race. In her two prior races, both at one mile on Santa Anita’s main track, she won the Dream of Summer for California-breds by 6 ¼ lengths on March 22 and an overnight race by a length-and-a-half on Feb. 20.Richard Baltas trains Wild in the Saddle. Through 28 racing days, Baltas was tied with Doug O’Neill for the training lead at 17 victories each. Baltas is winning at a sparkling 33 percent (17 for 51) and is the leader in purse earnings ($842,520).Baltas acknowledges that tackling two-time Eclipse Award winner Beholder and Grade I winner Warren’s Veneda is asking a lot of Wild in the Saddle, a Cal-bred daughter of Silic.“It’s a very tough spot to bring her back in,” Baltas said, “but she had two strong wins on dirt before that so she’s good to go, she’s ready to run. Obviously, Beholder and Warren’s Veneda are pretty tough horses, but we’ll see what happens.”Baltas still has to look twice when he sees his name atop the trainers’ standings.“I never thought I’d be in this position,” Baltas said. “I guess it’s just one day at a time, really. Sometimes things fall into place. That’s all it is. One day at a time. I don’t really think about it. I mean, it’s kind of fun to see my name up there, but who would have ever thought it?” Eddie Truman1671244%$260,300 Ricky Agarie1941321%$124,220 Vann Belvoir444669%$159,700 Edwin Maldonado758131311%$368,246 Gonzalo Nicolas8766137%$226,298 Martin Garcia2873425%$221,410 Mike Puype53712713%$462,590 ‘NEWCOMER’ AGARIE TACKLES ADORATION HEAVYWEIGHTSRicky Agarie is a new face among Santa Anita trainers but an old hand when it comes to horsemanship.The 45-year-old native of Lima, Peru has been in the game for 28 years but has been on his own only since last November. He learned the ropes in tours of six years each with Carla Gaines, Kathy Walsh and Jack Van Berg.Agarie (pronounced Ah-GAR-ee) currently has 26 horses in his care, four of which have won at the Spring Meet from just 19 starts (21 percent).“I grew up here in Whittier and I’ve been around the race track since 1988,” said Agarie, who sends out longshot My Monet (15-1) in the Adoration Stakes. “We’re getting some good horses to claim and I’ve got horses from new owners. The stable’s getting bigger and bigger.“The good thing is, as long as horses are sound, they’re going to run for you. I think we’re going to be the speed of the Adoration. This filly is doing better in her last three races, so I expect her to go to the front and they’ll have to come and catch us.”MIDNIGHT STORM SEEKS FOURTH STRAIGHT IN SHOEMAKERStreaking Midnight Storm seeks Grade I status when he runs in Saturday’s $400,000 Shoemaker Mile on turf, a “Win and You’re In” Challenge Race which gives the nominated winner an automatic entry into the 2015 Breeders’ Cup Mile at Keeneland on Oct. 31.Sired by the stallion of Triple Crown winner American Pharoah, Pioneerof the Nile, Midnight Storm has won three straight races, including the Grade II Del Mar Derby last Aug. 31 before returning in an overnight race at one mile on turf at Santa Anita April 16, scoring by nearly eight lengths in typical front-running fashion.“I think with his natural speed, he should be right up there,” said Phil D’Amato, who trains Midnight Storm for Venneri Racing or Dye or Little Red Feather Racing. “Tyler (Baze) knows him very well and breezes him every time, so I’ll leave that in Tyler’s hands. But I see him right up there.”Addressing the 4-year-old colt’s absence from the races for more than seven months, D’Amato said, “It was nothing of note. He had a nice long campaign (seven races last year, from March 22 through Aug. 31) and came back a better 4-year-old.”D’Amato put his chances of winning the Spring Meet training title on the back burner, even though he was just three off the lead with 14 wins through Thursday.“I’m a few wins from the top and don’t have as much ammo as the big guys,” he said, “but we’re having a really good meet.”Under the enhancements of the Challenge series, Breeders’ Cup Limited will pay the $40,000 entry fee of the Shoemaker Mile winner to start in the Mile if that horse is nominated to the Breeders’ Cup program by Oct. 19, the Pre-Entry deadline. Breeders’ Cup is providing all North American connections of horses based outside of Kentucky a $10,000 travel allowance to start in the Championships. The Shoemaker Mile is the third Breeders’ Cup Challenge qualifier in the Mile division this year. On Jan. 10, Futura became the first to earn a Mile bid by taking the L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate (Group 1) at Kenilworth Race Course in South Africa. The New Zealand-bred Keramadec qualified at Royal Randwick in Australia April 6 by winning the Star Doncaster Mile (Group 1). The field for the Shoemaker Winning Prize, Martin Garcia, 8-1; Talco, Rafael Bejarano, 5-1; Midnight Storm, Tyler Baze, 6-5; Seek Again, Jose Lezcano, 4-1; and Bal a Bali, Flavien Prat, 9-5. Martin Pedroza87613147%$329,824 Peter Miller651417522%$582,580 Richard Baltas51176433%$842,520 Fernando Perez10618171117%$726,980 JockeyMts1st2nd3rdWin%Money Won Michael Machowsky2154224%$133,820 SANTA ANITA STATISTICS Victor Espinoza3166619%$489,320 Bob Baffert2462525%$287,970 Doug O’Neill8717161020%$735,788 Tyler Baze16625242515%$1,446,180 Drayden Van Dyke9413111014%$576,160 Alex Solis3373421%$271,834 WARREN‘S VENEDA OUT TO MAKE AMENDS IN ADORATIONBALTAS IN ‘WILD’ RACE FOR SANTA ANITA TRAINING TITLETRAINER RICKY AGARIE IS NO ‘OVERNIGHT SENSATION’MIDNIGHT STORM ONE TO CATCH IN GRADE I SHOEMAKERFIRST 5,000 FANS SATURDAY RECEIVE TRIPLE CROWN PRINT (Current Through Thursday, June 11) Tiago Pereira591010617%$413,710 Santiago Gonzalez7561568%$310,126 Robertino Diodoro2563324%$220,230
Episode 14 of the Play Your Part TV series features the Nosipho Community Foundation, the New Jerusalem Home for Children and the El Theos organisation. Tune in this evening, find out what they’re about and how you can play a part in their initiatives.The Nosipho Community Foundation, New Jerusalem Home for Children and the El Theos organisation, featured in episode 14 of the PYP TV Series, all welcome your involvement.There are numerous opportunities to get involved in improving the lives of those around you, be it through funding or offering your time and expertise helping organisations make a difference.On Episode 14 of the Play Your Part TV series, airing on Saturday 13 January 2018 at 6pm on SABC 2, we take a look at three organisations who have helped improve the lives of people living with difficult circumstances.Here’s more on two of the organisations featured, with ideas on how you can play your part:Nosipho Community FoundationEstablished in 2014 by Nosipho Ngcobo, the Nosipho Community Foundation serves as a sanctuary to homeless and destitute living in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal.The foundation works with volunteers from across the country to help take care of the needs of vulnerable people in and around the city.Ngcobo and the rest of her team welcome anybody looking to make a difference and call on you to get involved.Those interested can have a look at the organisation’s website to get in touch or have a look at their Facebook page.New Jerusalem Home for ChildrenNot far from Tembisa, Gauteng, is the New Jerusalem Home for Children, a faith-based non-profit organisation that has been home to more than 1 000 children since September 2000.The home not only offers shelter and nourishment, it also aims to develop the children into well-rounded adults through education, social and emotional support.Find out more about the organisation on its website or via its Facebook page.Join usPlay Your Part is broadcast at 6pm on Saturdays on SABC2.To get involved in playing your part in South Africa:Check out the conversation on Twitter: #GetInvolved; orFind out about initiatives on Play Your Part here.Tell us how you Play Your Part through our social media channels:Follow us on Twitter: @PlayYourPartSA;Follow Brand South Africa on Twitter: @Brand_SA;Like us on Facebook: Official Brand South Africa.