Letters to the Editor

Robotics and Turkey Sandwiches

Stanley Church members and friends were joined by robotics teams Fear the Gear and Columbia High School for a Bridges Outreach run to Irvington. Credits: Lucy Malatesta
Earth Day themed lunch bag decorated by Washington Avenue School first grader. Credits: Lucy Malatesta
High school age robotics team members including Yuwen Zhang and Ryan Sherman invite 6-year-old Irvington resident, Samir, to try out the robots. Credits: Lucy Malatesta
Columbia High School robotics team members share their bots with young friend in Irvington Credits: Lucy Malatesta
Bridges Outreach volunteers gather in Summit to hear Tobias Fox explain Bridges mission and the nuts and bolts of a successful Bridges run. Credits: Lucy Malatesta

April 22, 2018

Below is the thank you letter written to all of the groups involved in a wonderful service project today in support of Bridges Outreach, a Summit based organization that has been aiding local homeless friends for 30 years.

Dear Central Presbyterian Kindergartners, Stanley Family and friends, Fear the Gear, Columbia High School robotics and Washington Avenue School artists:

Sign Up for E-News

Thank you for helping make today's Bridges run/Robotics demonstration to Irvington a success!

Central Presbyterian's kindergartners made 75 beautifully decorated lunches under the direction of their teacher and Stanley member Sharon Dougherty. Washington Avenue School K-3 artists decorated the remainder of the bags, some with Earth Day themes, very appropriate for today! The other lunches were made by robotics teams Fear the Gear and We Byte.

Twelve volunteers met up at Bridges headquarters in Summit this morning where we listened to Tobias Fox explain how a run worked and why it is so important to go out and help our homeless friends. We drove behind the yellow Bridges truck and started setting up tables, some for donated food and clothing and one table for the three robots the teams brought.

There were sixty or seventy homeless friends lined up, waiting for our arrival. As always we started with our "beverage service," hot chicken noodle soup and lemonade. This is a great time to greet our friends and establish a connection. 6-year-old Samir and his grandmother headed straight for the robots. He was fascinated. He played catch and flew paper airplanes with Columbia High School's robots and later drove and picked up cups with Fear the Gear's bot. I got permission to photograph him and you can see his face light up when he gets the robot to move!

Our adult friends also showed interest in the robots and had a lot of questions, "do you compete with the robots?' The answer to which is "yes." The follow up question, "Did you win," was answered, "sometimes." The teams that came today compete in New Jersey First Tech Challenge. During their season they are friendly rivals but this is now the third year that Fear the Gear and Columbia High School have come together to share their passion with our homeless friends in Irvington. 

Many of our friends talked to me, admiring the effort that must have gone into building and programming the robots. They really appreciated the demonstration, another expression that Bridges Outreach's goal is not only to help the homeless with material needs, but also to bring people together and erase the sense of other. It was a beautiful day in Irvington!


Lucy Malatesta

The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of or anyone who works for is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer. Click here to submit a Letter to the Editor.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News


Upcoming Events

Sun, May 20, 2:00 PM

Chatham Township Municipal Building, Chatham

A Tour of Chatham Township and Green Village

Arts & Entertainment

Sun, June 10, 1:00 PM

Hartley Farms Polo Field, Morristown

Great Swamp Great Music Festival

Arts & Entertainment

Mike Czech – One of Chatham’s Hidden Gems….

On a warm sunny day, back in 2008, at Southern Boulevard Elementary School stood a very tall man (6.5” to be exact!), soft-spoken, warm and friendly as he was surrounded by a whole group of children running around him (at his knees).

His name was Mike Czech and he was teaching the kids how to play a game on the open court.   I introduced myself to help assist him as a fellow ...

'Thank You' to the Chatham Borough Department of Public Works and Volunteers

May 7, 2018

To the Editor:

My sincere thanks to Chatham Borough Department of Public Works, and everyone who came out and planted at Shepard Kollock trail this past Saturday! It was amazing to have so many volunteers on hand to plant trees and shrubs. Whether you could only stay for a short time, or if you stayed with us until the very end – everyone’s hard work truly made a difference.

One ...

SURVIVING A STROKE: Quick Medical Response Gives Mom Her Life Back

Carotid artery dissection. It’s one of the most common causes of stroke in younger adults.

And while you might not associate the word “stroke” with younger patients, the condition – if not treated immediately – could lead to paralysis and even death.

Lindsey Singh can attest to the importance of immediacy. The 31-year-old mother of two from Flanders experienced ...


AtlantiCast: Episode 15

On this week’s AtlantiCast, learn some important tips for controlling and avoiding diabetes from an Atlantic Health System expert, see how Atlantic Health is advancing cutting-edge research, hear what’s being done to keep health care environmentally friendly and much more!


St. Patrick Students Present STEM Projects at Science Symposium

May 19, 2018

Selected student representatives from St. Patrick School grades 5-8 presented their STEM projects at a Science Symposium sponsored by the Catholic Schools Office of the Diocese of Paterson, with 12 other STEM schools, on May 15th at Caldwell College.  St. Patrick School students in grades Pre-K through 8th have been participating in year-long STEM projects as a ...