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One dead in Lyndhurst shooting

The state Attorney General’s Shooting Response Team is investigating a fatal shooting of the driver of a stolen SUV at the Lyndhurst-Rutherford border early Tuesday, Sept. 16, according to a press release issued by the AG’s Office. The driver, identified […]

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‘Sober House’ rattles residents

By Ron Leir  Observer Correspondent  KEARNY – The corner house at Grand Place and Stewart Ave. doesn’t really stand out in any particular way, but it’s drawn a lot of attention from neighbors – and not in a good way. Many packed the assembly chambers at […]

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2nd hotel signals growth

By Ron Leir  Observer Correspondent  HARRISON –  The town of Harrison, with a current population of about 14,000 but growing thanks to several new residential projects rising in its waterfront redevelopment area, now has a second hotel. It is the Element Harrison, the brand’s second hotel in New […]

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A harvest of plenty in special garden

By Karen Zautyk  Observer Correspondent  HARRISON–  Somewhere in Harrison, there is a magical place. If we were telling this story as a fairy tale, it would begin: Once upon a time, there was a small plot of land on which a happy home had stood. […]

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Vino, verily, arriving soon

By Ron Leir  Observer Correspondent  KEARNY – Starting next month, the Kearny Farmers Market will be offering a new, sweet treat as part of the fresh, Jersey-grown produce for its patrons. We’re talking vino, folks. The town governing body voted last Tuesday night to permit the Four […]

 
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ShopRite of Lyndhurst hosts fall wellness events

ShopRite of Lyndhurst, an Inserra Supermarkets store, 540 New York Ave., hosts a wellness series throughout September to help mark National Cholesterol Education Month.

Julie Harrington, in-store registered dietician, will run the series.

All of the following programs are free and do not require advance registration, unless otherwise noted.

• Join a weekly Walking  Club for a one-mile trek throughout the store, starting at Dietitian’s Corner on Thursdays, Sept. 11, 18 and 25, at 8 a.m. Membership cards and prizes are awarded to all participants.

• Learn easy-to-incorporate heart-healthy cooking methods at a Heart-y Cooking Class on Monday, Sept. 15, at 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. Preregistration is required.

• Help combat heart disease and fight hunger with an Exercise Extravaganza class as a fundraiser for Partners in Caring. Two classes will be offered on Wednesday, Sept. 17: a strength class from 5 to 5:45 p.m. and a Zumba class from 6 to 6:45 p.m. Participants pay a $5 fee per class, which will be donated to Partners in Caring, plus purchase canned goods to use as weights which are then donated to a local food pantry. Raindate: Wednesday,  Sept. 24.

• Learn how to cook up a healthy dish with Chef Joe on Thursday, Sept. 18, at 1 p.m. Pre-registration is required.

• Stop by the Dietitian’s Corner for the latest high-fiber finds and “how to” tips for increasing fiber intake on Friday, Sept. 19, from noon to 2 p.m.

• Youngsters can learn to  prepare a simple, healthy snack at the LiveRight with ShopRite Kids’ Day Cooking Class (ages 6 and up) on Friday, Sept. 19, from 4 to 4:45 p.m. and 5:30 to 6:15 p.m. Pre-registration is required.

• Each week’s produce pick will be the “star” of a new dish prepared by the dietitian on Thursday, Sept. 25 and Tuesday, Sept. 30, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

• Learn how to prepare a  vegetarian meal at a Veggie Power Cooking Class on Tuesday, Sept. 30, at 3 p.m. and at 5:30 p.m. Pre-registration is required.

In addition to developing a full roster of store-based wellness programs, Shop- Rite’s retail dietitians can serve as guest speakers/instructors at wellness events hosted by local organizations.

For more information or to pre-register for a program, contact Harrington at 201-419-9154 or email Julie. harrington@wakefern.com.

Schuyler Savings Bank: big-time banking in an intimate setting

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By Ryan Sloan

Observer Correspondent 

KEARNY –

If you’re looking for big time banking, but in a smaller setting — where everyone gets to know your name and your needs (go ahead, break into song with the theme to “Cheers”) — you needn’t look further than right here in West Hudson at Schuyler Savings Bank.

That’s because for decades, they’ve been offering customers all the amenities large-scale banks offer and then some without the hassle of having to deal with a huge corporation and the red tape that often comes with it.

The main Kearny office at 24 Davis Ave. first opened in 1924 — and just a few years ago, Schuyler Savings opened a branch office at 203-205 Frank E. Rodgers Boulevard in Harrison. In all those years, the bank’s President and CEO George Halski says one thing has never changed: a commitment to offering personal service to every single customer.

“What sets us apart, as well, is that we have had generations of customers,” Halski said. “We have customers whose grandparent and parents were also customers — and now their own children are our customers. We’re able to bring that personal touch and service in ways bigger banks just cannot.”

So how does Schuyler Savings achieve that?

It’s pretty simple, Halski says.

“What you’ll find here, year after year, is that it’s the same people behind the window or at the counter who offer that personal touch,” Halski said. “We rarely have turnover here. So our customers take pride in coming in and seeing the same people week after week after week.

“Our employees take pride in developing relationships with the customers, and we know the customers appreciate that as well.”

Halski says it’s never more evident than when customers pop into the bank having no business to conduct.

“Occasionally, people will come in to share stories … how their vacation was … or they’ll want to know how one of our vacations went,” he said. “That rarely happens in larger-scale facilities.”

Halski also says referral business has kept Schuyler Savings competitive in a fierce banking market.

“We pride ourselves on that. Our customers love to refer new business to us,” Halski said. “There have been so many instances where our customers have told family friends to go see so and so — he’ll take good care of you. That’s unbeatable.”

Indeed it is.

And remember, just because Schuyler Savings is smaller in size, it doesn’t mean the perks of big-time banking aren’t there, either.

The bank offers all of the usual banking services — from mortgages, to auto loans, to checking and savings accounts with debit cards and more. And they do so with a modern flare. Electronic banking is available, as is phone banking. So if it’s 2 a.m. and you need to check your account balance, you can do so with ease with the company’s modern platforms.

“The younger people often prefer to do their banking at 11 p.m. in their pajamas in front of the computer screen,” Halski said. “And that’s just fine — we offer all the tools to do just that.”

Lastly, Halski says he takes pride that Schuyler Savings is consistently rated a five-star bank by Bauer Financial, a financial-services industryrating organization.

“Their rating lets our customers know we’re one of the strongest banks in the country,” Halski said. “We’ve been able to, over the years, keep that rating because we treat the money we have with respect. I personally would never do anything with anyone else’s money that I wouldn’t do with my own.

“That philosophy, along with our strong board of directors, has kept us successful, even in the years when the economy wasn’t strong.”

To contact Schuyler Savings Bank, call 201-991-0001 or visit www.schuylersavings.com to find out all of the services the bank offers beyond what’s already been mentioned.

The Harrison branch can be reached at 973-412-1266.

Hours of operation at both offices are:

Banking: Monday to Wednesday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.; Thursday and Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Loan-Department: Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Those who need the loan department after 6 p.m. may call 201-991-6078 to schedule an after-hours appointment.

Walk-up window: Monday to Saturday, 8 to 9 a.m.; and Monday to Wednesday, 3 to 6 p.m.

Drive-through: Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and Saturday, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Around Town

Belleville 

The township hosts its annual 9/11 memorial ceremony on Sept. 11 at 8 a.m. at Franklin Ave. and Chestnut St. For more information, call Tom Grolimond at 973-460-7891.

St. Peter’s Rosary Confraternity hosts its annual Communion Breakfast, Sunday, Oct. 5, after the 8:30 a.m. Mass, at the Chandelier Restaurant, 340 Franklin Ave. Tickets are $22 and will be available at the rectory.

Bloomfield 

Bloomfield Public Library, 90 Broad St., hosts these upcoming events:

  • A free screening of “9/11,” a documentary by Jules and Gedeon Naudet, will be offered on Thursday, Sept. 11, at 12:15 p.m. Warning: This film contains strong language and subject matter that may not be suitable for all audiences.
  • Financial Book Club resumes Sept. 18. The club meets Tuesdays at 6 p.m. Registration is required. To register, call the library at 973-566-6200.
  • Animal cartooning class, for ages 4 to 6, meets Sept.17, from 4 to 6 p.m. The library will provide materials or participants can bring their own. Children can draw animals from memory, learn about animals in mythology and art history and create their own animal/ creature.
  • Celebrate the genius of Robin Williams with screenings of the following films: “One Hour Photo” (R) on Sept. 15, “The Birdcage” (R) on Sept. 18, “Mrs. Doubtfire”(PG-13) on Sept. 22, “Dead Poet’s Society” (PG) on Sept. 25 and “Awakenings” (PG- 13) on Sept. 29. All films start at 12:15 p.m. Admission is free.

Harrison 

Harrison/East Newark Elks present a 9/11 Memorial ceremony at Public Library Park, 415 Harrison Ave., on Thursday, Sept. 11, at 6 p.m.

Kearny 

The Class of 1964 of St. Cecilia High School is holding a 50th reunion dinner Saturday, Oct. 4, 6:30 to 10:30 p.m., at Mama Vittoria Restaurant, 160 Franklin Ave., Nutley. Those interested in attending are asked to contact Kathy McCourt Jackes at kathyjackes@yahoo. com or 908- 303-9993; Kathy Walsh Vecchio at katvec46gmail.com or 973-865-0402 or Nancy Branin Waller at nancy.waller2@verizon.net or 201-889- 6229 by Sept. 25.

St. Cecilia Church, 114 Chestnut St., sponsors a flea market on Saturday, Sept. 20, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Vendors are welcome. For more information, call 201-991-1116. All proceeds benefit the parish.

Kearny High School’s classes of 1954 and January 1955 host a 60th reunion luncheon on Sept. 19 at the Spring Lake Manor, Spring Lake, at noon. For information and reservations, contact Phyllis Glass McCartin at 732-458-5162 or phylpmaeaol.com. Guests are welcome.

New Jersey Blood Services will conduct a blood drive at Comunidade Evangelica Vida Abundante Sede (CEVA), also known as the Abundant Life Evangelical Community Church, 151 Midland Ave., on Sept. 15, from 4:30 to 9 p.m.

Kearny UNICO hosts these events:

  • Bus trip to Caesars in Atlantic City departs Sunday, Sept. 14, from the parking lot of Kearny Federal Savings, 614 Kearny Ave., at 8:30 a.m. Cost is $30, with $25 in slot credit back from the casino. For tickets or additional information, contact Lou Pandolfi at 201-368-2409 or 201-693-8504.
  • “Wheels for Vic,” a fundraiser to purchase a power wheelchair for Kearny resident Victor Muniz, will be held Sunday, Oct. 5, at 1 p.m., in the former Boystown gym, 499 Belgrove Drive. Tickets are $30, which includes a raffle, lunch and live music. Muniz was paralyzed after a tree branch fell on him during a 2008 summer storm. For tickets or more information, contact Pandolfi, or Joseph Sgalia at 201- 998- 6879, Rossana McLaughlin at 201-407-7262, or Judy Hyde at 201-991-5812. The committee also welcomes both monetary and/or gift donations for this event.

Trinity Church, 575 Kearny Ave., hosts these programs:

  • A flea market will be held Sept. 13, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tables are available for vendors at a cost of one for $15 and two for $25. Call the church at 201-991- 5894 to schedule a table or call Annamarie at 201-998-2368 after 5:30 p.m.
  • A fish, chicken and chips dinner is slated for Friday, Oct. 3, 6 to 8 p.m. Tickets are $20 and two for $30. Take-out will also be available. Tricky Tray will follow from 8 to 9 p.m. For tickets, call Annamarie.

The Kearny Public Library, 318 Kearny Ave., offers a free screening of “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” (PG-13 / 136 minutes) Friday, Sept. 19, at 3:30 p.m.

Pathways to Independence sponsors its 13th annual Walka- Thon Saturday, Oct. 4, 10 a.m. to noon, at West Hudson Park, Schuyler Ave. entrance. All are welcome. Proceeds benefit adults with disabilities who attend Pathways programs. For more information, call Pathways Executive Director Alvin Cox at 201-997-9371, ext. 18.

 Lyndhurst 

The Masonic Club, 316 Riverside Ave., hosts all-you-can-eat crabs and cole slaw (chicken available for non-seafood eaters) Saturday, Sept. 20, at 6 p.m. Tickets are $15 and must be paid in advance by Sept. 14. Admission is $20 at the door. For reservations, call the club at 201-933-1330.

The Woman’s Club of Lyndhurst sponsors these events:

  • An indoor garage sale is slated for Saturday, Sept. 20, at the Senior Building, 250 Cleveland Ave., from 9 a.m to 3 p.m.
  • A children’s Tricky Tray is set for Oct. 18, at the Senior Building, at noon. Tickets are $5. For tickets, call Janet at 201- 935-1208.

Lyndhurst Public Library, 355 Valley Brook Ave., hosts an Apple Craft open to pre-K to grade 3, Wednesday, Sept. 17, 3:30 to 4:15 p.m. Registration is required.

The library also hosts “The Importance of Exercise as We Age,” presented by Kessler Rehabilitation Center Physical Therapist Ellen Ross, Thursday, Sept. 25, at 11:30 a.m. She will discuss the benefits of exercise for adults and demonstrate a general stretching/strengthening program. Space is limited and registration is necessary. To register, call the library at 201-804-2478, ext. 7, or email romeo@lyndhurst.bccls.org.

The Lyndhurst Health Department announces the following programs. To register, call the department at 201-804-2500.

  • Registered dietician Elizabeth Nossier offers healthy diet tips at a breakfast forum hosted by Clara Maass Medical Center, at the Health Department, Friday, Sept. 12 at 10 a.m.
  • A bi-annual chiropractic screening, conducted by Lyndhurst chiropractor Marco Ferrucci, is also set for Sept. 12 at 8:45 a.m. The screening includes a digital postural analysis.
  • A bi-annual women’s health clinic, arranged through a partnership with Clara Maass Medical Center, is scheduled for Wednesday, Oct. 1, at 9 a.m. It includes education on breast self-examination and a PAP test and is open to township residents ages 18 and over.
  • A free meditation course will be offered Sept. 17, from 6 to 7 p.m. at the department’s new location, 319 New York Ave. For more information, call the Health Department.

The New Jersey Meadowlands Commission invites all ages to “Get to Know N.J. Black Bears,” presented by the Manalapan-based Bear Education and Resource program, on Sunday, Sept. 14, from 2 to 3:30 p.m., at 2 DeKorte Park Plaza. Live bears will not be part of the program. Admission is $5; $4 for MEC members. Registration is recommended and appreciated. To register, go to www. njmeadowlands.gov/ec.

For more information, call 201-460-8300.

Other NJMC events include the following:

  • The Third-Tuesday-of-the- Month Bird Walk starts with a bird-banding demonstration on Tuesday, Sept. 16, 10 a.m. to noon, at the Harrier Meadow on Disposal Road near Schuyler Avenue, North Arlington. Check meadowblog.net for last-minute updates. Guests are asked to sign a standard liability release that is good for NJMC/ BCAS events throughout the year. To R.S.V.P., contact Don Torino of the BCAS or call 201- 230-4983.
  • The Bergen County Audubon Society presents a free talk and reception at the Meadowlands Environment Center, DeKorte Park, on Wednesday, Sept. 17, 8 to 9:30 p.m., to launch “Bald Eagles in the Meadowlands and Beyond,” sponsored by the N.J. Meadowlands Commission and Conserve Wildlife Foundation. The free ebook features images by 19 mostly local nature photographers, as well as chapters on the Bald Eagle’s amazing recovery in the region, the state and nationwide.

To R.S.V.P., contact Don Torino of the BCAS or call 201- 230-4983.

Veterans of Foreign Wars’ Post 3549, 527 Valley Brook Ave., hosts a karaoke party on Friday, Sept. 19, at 8 p.m. The VFW hall is also available for all occasions. For more information, call the Post at 201- 939-3080.

North Arlington 

North Arlington Public Library, 210 Ridge Road, offers the following programs for adults and children:

  • Museum of the City of New York passes are available at the library. Each pass admits two adults and four children. A $50 cash deposit and an adult library card in good standing are required to borrow. Passes are available through July 31, 2015.
  • Knitting Group meets on Thursdays – Sept. 18, Oct. 9, Nov. 13 and Dec. 11 – from 7 to 8:30 p.m.
  • Friends of the Library meet on Fridays – Sept. 19, Oct. 17 and Nov. 14 – at 10 a.m.
  • Tween Book Club for grades 4 to 7 meets Thursday, Sept. 18, at 3:30 p.m.
  • Origami, also for grades 4 to 7, meets Friday, Sept. 19, at 3:30 p.m. The following is a list of dates and times for Back-to-School Nights at North Arlington Public Schools:
  • Wednesday, Sept. 17: North Arlington High School, 222 Ridge Rd., at 7 p.m.
  • Wed. Sept. 24: Middle School, 45 Beech St., at 6:45 p.m.
  • Thurs. Sept. 25: Roosevelt School, 50 Webster St., at 6:45 p.m.
  • Tues. Sept. 30: Washington School, 175 Albert St., at 7 p.m.
  • Wed. Oct. 1: Jefferson School, 100 Prospect Ave., at 6:45 p.m.

Nutley

Registration is open for the fall session of the Recreation Department’s Mad Science Program for Nutley youngsters in grades 2 to 5. Handson activities cover such topics as rocketry, magnets, polymers and even the science of toys.

The 5-week program will be held Tuesdays, from 6 to 7 p.m., starting Sept. 16.

The fee is $50 per child. Register online at www.nutleynj.org or at the Rec Department, 44 Park Ave. Space is limited, and applications will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. For further information, call 973- 284-4966.

The Department of Parks & Recreation is accepting Recreation Basketball registration for the 2014-2015 season. This program is open to Nutley youngsters in grades 3 through 8. Teams compete in a recreational league format and are grouped in divisions by grade. Boys and girls will play in separate leagues. The aim of this program is to provide ample playing time for all participants, teach the fundamentals of individual and team play and encourage sportsmanship.

The deadline to register is Oct. 17. The fee is $40 per player. For more information, visit www.nutleynj.org or call 973- 284-4966 between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.

The Manga/Anime Teen Club, open to grades 7 to 12, meets on Friday, Sept. 19, at 3 p.m., at the Nutley Public Library, 93 Booth Drive.

Middle School opens

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KEARNY – 

Most of Kearny’s public school seventh- and eighthgraders showed up for the first day (actually, it was a half day) of classes at the newly designated Lincoln Middle School last Thursday.

And four brand new classrooms – created this summer following the Board of Education’s administrative staff moving to their new quarters on Midland Ave. – opened at the Franklin Elementary School campus, housing two pre-Ks (morning and afternoon sessions), a bilingual first grade and a sixth-grade science/math.

Franklin Principal Yvonne Cali said the town Building Department granted a temporary certificate of occupancy, pending adjustment of the height of toilets for the younger children.

Lincoln Middle School’s administrators, Principal Robert Zika and Vice Principal Patrick Ragnoni, said their first day went fairly smoothly, made a bit easier, they noted, by the fact that about 550 of the school’s 850 students had arrived the day before to pick up classroom schedules.

They said that most of their peers got their schedules on Thursday and if any problems popped up, school guidance counselors jumped in to remedy any confusion within minutes.

They estimated overall attendance on Thursday at “about 90%” but anticipated that figure would be adjusted upwards within the next few days as parents and/or guardians took care of any last-minute residency issues while other families returned from extended Labor Day vacations.

Teachers and non-instructional staff assigned to the middle school showed up as expected, they said.

Acting Superintendent of Schools Patricia Blood, making the rounds of schools in the district, stopped at Lincoln to extend greetings. At a well-attended public forum in mid-June, Blood had assured parents that Lincoln would be ready to receive students by the opening of the fall term.

Still, one nagging question raised by several parents couldn’t be satisfactorily answered, at least from some parents’ perspective – busing of kids to and from school – a practice the Kearny Board of Education has not adopted a school district is only obliged to provide school transportation if the distance between any elementary school and residence exceeds two miles, and that’s simply not the case, Blood said.

But, inspired by Elva Tineo and Oscar Riva, whose two daughters attend Lincoln, 15 parents of children who had to transfer from Washington Elementary School near the Harrison border to Lincoln have petitioned the Kearny BOE and superintendent to reconsider.

The petition reads: “We parents are worried about the distance between our houses to Lincoln School. The students used to go to Washington School which was in the neighborhood but with the new restructuring, Lincoln School is too far from our homes.

“The distance from our houses to Lincoln School is 1.8 miles and it will take 42 minutes in a good weather condition just to walk to the school. We do not have a budget for a $56 monthly bus fare for each kid just to get to school.

“Please consider the dangers and safety of our kids walking for almost an hour to school. How is a parent supposed to feel safe and comfortable, when our kids can encounter anything or anyone, i.e., sex offenders, heat exhaustion, irresponsible drivers … and so much more.”

Tineo said the parents would be happy with a shuttle bus that ran along Kearny Ave., the main north-south artery in town, to transport the children.

Asked if the town could take on such an enterprise, Mayor Alberto Santos told The Observer, “Transportation of school children is a school function. We can’t assume that responsibility unless there’s a compelling need.”

But even assuming deployment of a Kearny Ave. shuttle, Santos said, “you’re going to need multiple buses and drivers and that’s a significant cost.” And, Santos said, it could open a Pandora’s box because, “Once you do it for one group of children, you’ve got to do it for all.”

Asked if the Police Department would be adding or reconfiguring existing school crossing guards to adjust to the redistricting, Santos said: “We asked the district to supply us with information on that but we never got the data from them on whether student commuting patterns would change. However, the police are monitoring the situation.”

– Ron Leir 

Kearny girls poised for county, state title runs

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By Jim Hague

Observer Sports Writer 

Make no bones about it. The Kearny High School girls’ soccer team will be one of the finest contingents in New Jersey this fall.

The Kardinals have it all. They have experience, they have offensive scoring power, they have ball handlers and a rock solid defense.

“We have a nice, fast moving, exciting team,” said veteran head coach Vin Almeida. “We have to get the ball moving forward and the let them guide the offense.”

The Kardinals, winners of an incredible five straight Hudson County tournament championships, have all the ingredients of making a long run in the NJSIAA Group IV state tournament come November.

Leading the way is senior forward Barbara Paiva, who scored more than 20 goals a year ago.

“She’s a fantastic player with great ability,” Almeida said. “There are not too many girls who can strike the ball with both feet the way Barbara does. She’s one of the better ones. She’s so creative with the ball.”

Senior midfielder Kathleen Dos Reis returns. She was injured for most of last season with ankle problems, but she’s back and better than ever.

“She’s playing very well,” Almeida said. “We have to get her in the attack.”

Junior forward Amber Crispin is also back. She scored 16 goals last year.

“Amber is also one who can strike with both feet,” Almeida said. “She’s going to drop some balls into the net, because she can hit it hard.”

Almeida likes the offensive approach the Kards have.

“We’re coming back with a good amount of offensive firepower,” Almeida said. “We also have some young kids who can assist in that area. We have a nice rhythm offensively and we’re going to score a lot of goals.”

The lead goalkeeper will be junior Laura Vilar, who started in goal last year, but she will receive assistance in net by senior Amanda DeSousa.

“We should be solid with the experience we have coming back,” Almeida said.

The Kardinals return four starters along the defensive back line.

Senior Dana Green has tremendous size and skill to play a center back position. Senior Eliza Rodrigues is another solid experienced defender. Senior Salma Bouzidi has tremendous ball skills and speed for a defender. Sophomore Isabel Fernandez rounds out the contingent of strong defenders. All four earned accolades last season for their prowess in a 19-3 campaign.

“We have a lot of talent back there,” Almeida said. “Dana Green can be intimidating on the back line. Salma has great skill with the ball and we get her involved with the attack. It’s a good group.”

Dos Reis keys the midfielders, but the talent doesn’t stop there.

Senior Taylor Munro is a returning starter in the midfield. Senior Amanda Eustice returns strong after missing last season with a torn ACL in her knee.

The Kardinals would have had even more talent in the midfield if not for the injuries to Sydney Pace and Breanne Rodriguez. Both will not be able to play this season due to injuries.

“We have a nice competition going on for the last spot in the midfield,” Almeida said.

Junior Ryelle Seda and sophomore Merrin Keim are in the hunt, as well as freshman Natasha Magee.

Up front, the Kardinals have Paiva, Crispin and sophomore Lily Durning, who Almeida called “a good contributor.”

The Kardinals will also get assistance from sophomores Victoria Van Riper, Rachel Nieto and Sydney Viscuso on the back line, and seniors Cindy Guzman, Nicole Sanchez and twin juniors Ashley and Alexis Castaneda along the midfield.

“The challenge is to get them all some good playing time,” Almeida said.

The Kardinals have it all. “It should be a good one,” Almeida said. “We’ve looked good in the preseason. The girls just have to believe.” The Kearny girls’ soccer booster club is sponsoring the third annual beefsteak at the Scots-American Club at 40 Paterson St. in Kearny on Friday from 7 to 11 p.m. Tickets are $40.

But it should be an exciting season for the Kardinals.

“We’re due for a win on that side (penalty kicks in the state tournament),” Almeida said. “We’re hoping to finish it off in regular time. I think we can be a force to be reckoned with if we keep the right mind set.”

And as for a state championship? “There’s surely that possibility,” Almeida said.

Everyone in Kearny is hoping for that possibility to become a reality.

NA grid Vikings: Vow to improve in 2014

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By Jim Hague

Observer Sports Writer

The North Arlington High School football team posted a 2-8 record in 2013.

“We had a pretty tough schedule and played well at times, but we couldn’t finish,” said North Arlington head coach Anthony Marck, who enters his ninth season as the head coach at his alma mater.”We just didn’t have depth to compete. We’ve talked about finishing all during the offseason. It’s become the main point of our program, to finish everything. In the weight room, every repetition, make sure you finish what we start.”

The Vikings will eventually have a new home to start the 2014 season as improvements to Rip Collins Field continue toward the scheduled opening in two weeks.

So it’s a new start for the Vikings all around this season.

“You can sense it completely,” Marck said. “That’s the best part about this team. They’re all in. They genuinely like each other and get along incredibly well. They buy into what the other guy is doing. They enjoy each other’s company, on and off the field. I have no worries about who’s getting credit for doing what.” So Saturday afternoon, when the Vikings head to the new athletic facility in Riverside County Park to take on neighboring rival Queen of Peace at 1 p.m., they will be ready as a unit, ready to move forward, ready to forget what took place last year.

“We have a group of unselfish football players,” Marck said.

Leading the way is junior quarterback Mike Paolello (5-9, 165), who Marck cannot stop raving about.

“I’ve watched him since he was little,” Marck said of Paolello. “He was on a team in eighth grade that went undefeated and he was the quarterback throughout his whole life. His football knowledge is through the roof. His athleticism is almost freakish. I truly believe he’s a special player. He can throw it, he can run it. He’s the fastest player on the team and he can throw it on a dime.”

To feature Paolello’s skills, the Vikings will be more of a spread team offensively this year.

“We’ll be in the spread, running and throwing,” Marck said. “With him there and the ball in his hands, we can be so much more dangerous.”

The running back is junior Joe Morales (5-10, 185), who Marck likes for his toughness. “He’s a downhill runner,” Marck said of Morales. “He’s a strong, physical runner.

He just loves the game of football.”

The Vikings feature a bunch of talented performers at wide receiver and slot receiver. One of them is junior Edgar Carranza (5-11, 175), who has been a standout in basketball and now takes his talents to the gridiron.

“He has excellent hands,” Marck said of Carranza. “He has a knack for the football. We talked him into playing and he’s shown me a lot.”

Junior Kevin Sequeira (5-9, 160) is another basketball player who is playing football.

“He is an outstanding route runner,” Marck said. “He’s shown a lot of ability.”

The slot receiver is Alex Samaan (5-10, 180), who has been moved to slot from running back.

“He’s a good athlete and super fast,” Marck said.

The second slot is being shared by senior Giuseppe Gugliuzza (6-0, 200) and junior Tim Ford (5-8, 165), who Marck said is “a lot like Wes Welker.”

The offensive line features three returning starters in senior Danny Goffredo (5-10, 190), who is a four-year starter at guard, senior Brandon Pipher (5-9, 205) at guard and senior Dominic Reo (6-2, 210), who Marck said is “an athletic lineman,” at center.

Junior Brandon Dickson (5-11, 235) and senior Cesar Ramos (6-1, 185) are the bookend tackles.

“It’s a little easier having that experience upfront,” Marck said. “They are athletic and tough.”

The Vikings’ 4-4 defense features a lot of the same personnel.

Reo is a returning starter at defensive end, along with senior Colin Clifford (5-8, 165).

Pipher and Goffredo are returning starters at defensive tackle.

Morales is at outside linebacker along with senior Michael Cammett (5-8, 180). Gugliuzza is at inside backer with junior Devon Lopes (5-10, 180).

Carranza and Ford are the cornerbacks with Samaan at safety.

It’s only fitting that North Arlington kicks off the season against the Golden Griffins. It’s a natural rivalry that has been instituted thanks to the new North Jersey Interscholastic Conference.

“I’m excited about the season,” Marck said. “I’m excited about the speed that we have. We have a new team, a new field, a new field house. I think we have a chance to make some noise.”

Golden Griffins gridiron group move on without Momnohin

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By Jim Hague 

Observer Sports Writer

The Queen of Peace football team enjoyed a resurgent campaign in 2013, winning six games, including a first round NJSIAA Non-Public Group 1 state playoff game against St. Anthony.

“Without a doubt, it was a success,” said Bob Kearns, who returned to his coaching roots last year to take over the QP program once again. “Coming back for me with a team in turmoil and not knowing where we were going to go. We kept a lid on things and had a very successful season, going back to the state playoffs and winning a game.”

The Golden Griffins also had the state’s leading rusher in Kevin Momnohin, who rushed for more than 2,000 yards and scored 35 touchdowns last season.

“You never replace anything like that,” said Kearns, who guided the Golden Griffins to a 6-5 record last year. “He was a coach’s gift. The football gods were good to me, getting a kid like that. That’s for sure. But you can’t replace blue lightning. I can’t stop talking about him. I may never stop.”

Momnohin is now at Scottsdale Junior College in Arizona, hoping to hook on with an NCAA Division I program in the future.

In the meantime, the Golden Griffins have to move on without their franchise running back.

“I hope we can find another one like him,” Kearns said. “Maybe there’s another one. Who knows? He was just a coach’s dream, a special kid.”

Leading the Golden Griffins this season is sophomore quarterback Derick Suazo (6-1, 175), who Kearns said has the potential to be a good one.

“He’s a tough kid who has really picked up the offense quickly,” Kearns said. “He’s very composed at a very young age. He’s a leader. He’s very mature.”

Senior Brandon Cummings (5-9, 160) is one of the team’s running backs. He was Momnohin’s backup last year.

Senior Shaquan Chavis (5-7, 155) is a little scat back who adds speed. Muadh Abdus Salaam (5-7, 155) is another sophomore in the Griffin backfield.

Sophomore Javon Turner (6- 2, 175) is one of Suazo’s main targets at wide receiver.

“He has good hands and is a great route runner,” Kearns said. “He knows how to get open. He looks like he’s a winner on the field. He’s going to be a star. We have to get him the ball.”

Jasiah Provillon (6-0, 150) is another sophomore wide receiver.

“He has great hands and is a good possession receiver,” Kearns said. “When we need the tough yards, he’s the one we’re going to.”

The tight end duties are being shared by a pair of sophomores, namely Donte Small (5-11, 170) and Chad DiCastro (6-2, 170).

The offensive line features promising freshman Deshawn Brickhouse (6-2, 190) at tackle. Senior Peter Haas is the other tackle, with solid player Chima Dunga (6-2, 230) at guard. Joshua Fedd-Jackson, a 6-foot- 2, 310-pound sophomore, is the other guard.

Defensively, the Griffins fea ture a 4-4 formation, with freshman Kenyon Bowman (6- 1, 175) showing a lot of promise at defensive end, where Dunga also plays. Brickhouse will also get time at defensive end.

Jackson and freshman Rajohn Jones (5-8, 280) are the defensive tackles, giving the Griffins a lot of bulk along the defensive line.

Sophomore Ali Beh (5-10, 165) is a player to watch at linebacker.

Cummings and Chavis are also linebackers. The cornerbacks are junior Mike Scaravilli and freshman Michael Fields (5-10, 160), with Turner at safety.

Yes, the Golden Griffins kick off the 2014 season Saturday afternoon at Riverside County Park against neighboring rival North Arlington in what should be a barnburner of a contest to start the year.

“I love this team,” Kearns said. “They’re young and energetic and have a ton of speed. They want to learn.”

And all that talk about QP either dropping football or the school closing? It’s all hogwash, in the eyes of Kearns. “

We’re here to stay,” Kearns said. “We had to do something to keep going.”

So there is a relationship between a local Pop Warner coach in Newark and the QP grid program. Several of those players are now at QP this fall.

“We had to do something to survive,” Kearns said. “We had nothing. The young kids are going to get a baptism by fire this year right away.” Kearns also likes Suazo and what he brings to his program. “He’s a pleasure to coach,” Kearns said of his quarterback. “He carries himself well. Once you see him, you’ll see he can handle it. We just have to try to keep other teams off him.” Needless to say, the Golden Griffins will be a grid team to watch this fall.

Collect pledges for Pathways

Get involved in a worthy charity cause and collect a free T-shirt. To encourage participation in next month’s Pathways to Independence Walk-A-Thon, Silva Construction is sponsoring a free event T-shirt for each participant who turns in $100 or more in pledges.

It’s easy to participate in the Oct. 4 Walk-AThon. Just register yourself or your team in advance by obtaining registration forms at Pathways to Independence, 60 Kingsland Ave. (at Bergen and Schuyler Aves.), Kearny, or call 201-997-6155 to have them mailed to you. You can also register before the walk at the Schuyler Ave. entrance of West Hudson Park, starting at 9 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 4.

The walk will start at 10 a.m. and takes only about an hour to complete, but it will make a big difference to Pathways. The event also includes food, drinks, tricky tray raffles, special item raffles, craft items for sale that were made by Pathways consumers and a goody-bag for each participant.

Pathways to Independence is a not-for-profit organization that has been providing life skills, job training and work for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities for the past 37 years and serves Hudson, Bergen and parts of Essex County.

For more information, contact Alvin Cox, executive director of Pathways to Independence, at 201-997-9371 ext. 18.

Are your supplements working?

Dr. Richard Ekstein hosts a bio-photonic event Monday, Sept. 22, from 6:30 to 8 p.m., at 312 Belleville Turnpike, Suite 3B, North Arlington, when guests will receive interesting information about the capability of the bio-photonic scanner.

Learn if your body is receiving enough anti-oxidants to support a healthy body. Learn why anti-oxidants are a necessary ingredient in obtaining optimal health benefits. Learn how to enhance and maximize the absorption rate of these necessary nutrients.

During this event, guests will discover their body’s anti-oxidant level and learn how to increase their personal levels. Admission is $20 for the event and a personal scan. The program is limited to 30 people. For more information or to register, email your name and phone # to antioxidantseminar@ gmail.com.

Then & Now

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Photo by Karen Zautyk

Photo by Karen Zautyk

 

What you are looking at ‘Then’ is a photo taken at the 1921 Kearny High School cornerstone laying ceremony, which, considering all the bunting and banners, was quite a do. Look also at the height of that grandstand, which is holding not only the stone itself (on the right behind the long poles) but lots of people, including a whole passel of top-hatted men. The gentleman in the center of the speakers’ stand we presume to be Kearny Mayor Robert E. Torrance, who presided at the program.’Now’ the school is only partially visible from the Devon St. viewpoint, abutted as it is by a bunch of trailers. These house temporary classrooms, necessitated by an ongoing construction/sound proofing project. The trailers have been there for awhile and will likely remain indefinitely, since there is no projected completion date for the work. (There have been difficulties.) We tried to find the cornerstone, but we didn’t know which side of the facade it was on, and we didn’t want to get arrested for trespassing in the trailer park.

– Karen Zautyk 

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