The needler in the haystack.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Drake House offers program on Madam C.J. Walker Sunday

Learn about America's first self-made Black woman millionaire.

Plainfield's Drake House Museum will host a program on Madam C.J. Walker, civil rights activist and America's first self-made woman millionaire this Sunday afternoon at 2:00 PM as part of Women's History Month.

Born Sarah Breedlove in 1867 in Louisiana, she was one of six children. the only child of her parents born free.

Hard working and indomitable, she married at 14 to escape an abusive brother-in-law. Eventually, she arrived in Denver where she met and married C.J. Walker (hence the name of her company) and they developed her cosmetics and hair care business.

Throughout her business career, Madam Walker stressed civil rights, political engagement and philanthropy. And she encouraged the same in her army of sales agents.

Dr. Daisy Century will present a highly researched, dramatically intense portrayal of Madam Walker's life and contributions.

The program is in the Drake House's second-floor ballroom, which is NOT handicap-accessible. Seating is limited, so be sure to come early. Refreshments will be served.

The Drake House Museum at 602 West Front Street (at the foot of Plainfield Avenue) is open to the public Sunday afternoons from 2:00 - 4:00 PM, and at other times by appointment. For more information, call (908) 755-5831 or visit the website at

  -- Dan Damon [follow]

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Friday, March 27, 2015

Plainfield Symphony's 'Bernstein on Broadway' Saturday

The dashing and energetic Leonard Bernstein
composed for Broadway as well as the concert hall.

The Plainfield Symphony expects to pack them in for Saturday night's "Bernstein on Broadway" concert.

Under the baton of music director Charles Prince and with special guest Jamie Bernstein, the evening will feature symphonic dances and vocal selections from West Side Story, On The Town, Candide and Wonderful Town.

A large crowd from New York comes out for these Bernstein extravaganzas, so locals should plan on arriving in good time for the concert.

An added feature will be a post-concert gala reception at the home of John Stewart and Craig Bowman, 308 West 8th Street. The reception will feature catered hors d'oeuvres and an open bar. Proceeds will benefit the Plainfield Symphony.

The Plainfield Symphony performs at Crescent Avenue Presbyterian Church, Watchung Avenue at East 7th Street. Performances begin at 7:00 PM sharp. Tickets: $50/Reserved, $30/General admission, $20/Seniors/Students; under 12 free. Visit the PSO website:

The After-Party is a separate event, $50 per person. Payment can be made at the door.

  -- Dan Damon [follow]

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Thursday, March 26, 2015

Tums time for Jerry Green?

Bad night, bad day, bad season ... whatever!

For Plainfield Assemblyman Jerry Green spring is the season of flowers, fundraisers and fretting.

Well, for Jerry, maybe just fundraising and fretting. You can see a picture of Jerry and his best buddies on his blog (here) at a recent fundraiser. But all this political activity in the Spring gets Jerry's stomach upset. Time to reach for the Tums!

As for the fretting, a Plainfield Today reader reported receiving a phone "survey" last evening that sounds like one of Jerry's fretful push polls.

Conducted by a firm with the caller ID of Portab Insights with the number (908) 248-5371, the poll asked the respondent's opinions about Plainfield, Mayor Mapp, Asm Green and City Council candidates -- including incumbents Cory Storch (who is running) and Bridget Rivers (who is NOT running this year).

The reader noted the survey also covered the current investigative audit, portraying it in a negative light.

Were you lucky enough to get a call, too? Folks would be glad to hear of your experience.

A quick Google search turned up a Rhode Island marketing research with the name Portable Insights (see their website here), which does political polling and sounds like it could be the firm in question.

Rhode Island? Does Jerry even know where Rhode Island is?

  -- Dan Damon [follow]

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Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Online registration drives Recreation programs

Online registration is boosting Easter Egg Hunt participation
to levels never seen before.
Online registration is driving participation in Plainfield recreation programs to numbers never before seen.

Recreation Superintendent Veronica Taylor reports that as of Tuesday forty-five youngsters were registered to participate in Saturday's Easter Egg Hunt at Cedar Brook Park. According to Taylor, this far exceeds any previous year's registration as far as records show.

The reason for the uptick?

Families are taking advantage of the Division's new online registration system, Community Pass, which allows families to register participants in a variety of recreational activities and pay fees online, thus cutting out a trip to the Recreation office in City Hall Annex.

The program went live in January and will continue its rollout as seasonal activities advance. You can check out the program on the city's website here -- note the button on the lower left side of the home page.

  -- Dan Damon [follow]

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