Top Local News

New Jersey Intergenerational Orchestra Presents "The Evolution of Music" Webinar

May 30, 2020

The New Jersey Intergenerational Orchestra is proud to present a four-class series titled the Evolution of Music. Artistic Director Warren Cohen will begin by discussing the development of instruments and the progression of music notation starting from 1000 AD.

How precise is music notation? In what ways do style, culture, and the limitation of past instruments translate to ...

Downtown Westfield’s ‘Girls’ Night In’ Shines Light on Local Businesses

WESTFIELD, NJ — Girls’ Night Out in Downtown Westfield, a popular yearly event supporting downtown businesses, went virtual Thursday, becoming “Girls’ Night In” to meet the challenges of social distancing.

Along with special promotions from shops and restaurants, there was a live-streamed video “pre-party” Thursday afternoon that spotlighted some of ...

Westfield’s ‘Virtual Girls’ Night In’ to Put Social in Social Distancing

WESTFIELD, NJ — Quarantine hair is perhaps not the direst of issues on folks minds these days, but it’s certainly a common one.

That’s why Daniel Tschopp, or “Dan Tee,” of Dan DanTee Hair Architects in Westfield is one of many local businesses who will be presenting as part of the Downtown Westfield Corporation’s “Virtual Girls’ Night ...

Iconic Clark Business to Close, Bernie’s Westbrant Owner to Retire After Decades of Service

May 30, 2020

CLARK, NJ – After 67 years, Bernie’s Westbrant Auto Parts and Repairs will permanently close its doors on July 17, 2020.   The iconic Clark business has anchored the intersection of Westfield Avenue and Brant Ave since founder Bernie Gittleman started the business with his wife in 1952.

“Bernie’s has been my heart and soul throughout my entire life,” ...

Murphy: Childcare Centers, Summer Camps and Youth Sports Can Reopen; Targets June 12 for Return of Worship Services

TRENTON, NJ -- The reopening process for the State of New Jersey continues as Gov. Phil Murphy on Friday announced that he has lifted restrictions for daycare centers, summer camps, and non-contact youth sports. The reopening dates are:

Child care centers (June 15)
Non-contact organized sports activities (June 22)
Youth day camps, including municipal summer rec programs (July ...

House Passes Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act Co-Sponsored by Rep. Malinowski

WASHINGTON, DC -- The U.S. House of Representatives today passed the Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act, a bipartisan bill to provide needed flexibility for small business owners amid the COVID-19 health and economic crisis. Representative Tom Malinowski (D, NJ-7) co-sponsored the bill. 

The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) has helped over 130,000 small businesses in New Jersey ...

Positively SPF: Eagle Scout Malcolm Kahora

May 30, 2020

SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- Has this quarantine led you to re-discovering your local parks: In particular, the little known gem known as Brightwood Park? You may have noticed some improvements that were part of Malcolm Kahora’s Eagle Scout Project completed last fall.

Malcolm, son of Sheila Grimes-Kahora and Ken Kahora, started his scouting career at Holy Trinity School’s Cub Scouts, Pack ...

Fourth of July Fireworks at Union County Parks Canceled; Scotch Plains Decision Expected June 12

SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- Union County Parks and Recreation has announced that Independence Day fireworks scheduled to take place in county parks have been canceled this year due to COVID-19. 

The following displays are canceled:

Plainfield fireworks scheduled to take place in Cedar Brook Park on July 4.
Cranford fireworks scheduled to take place in Nomahegan Park on ...

Scotch Plains-Fanwood School District Hires New Head of Curriculum, Instruction, and Technology

May 31, 2020

SCOTCH PLAINS/FANWOOD, NJ -- The Scotch Plains-Fanwood school district has announced the hiring of former Holmdel Township Superintendent Dr. Robert McGarry as SPFK12's new Assistant Superintendent for Curriculum, Instruction and Technology.

SPFK12 Superintendent Dr. Joan Mast has essentially replaced herself with this hire; Dr. McGarry is taking over the job that Dr. Mast held before ...

Scenes from Union Catholic's Class of 2020 Graduation in Scotch Plains

SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- School spirit shined, Viking pride exuded, horns honked, and confetti flew when Union Catholic’s Class of 2020 passed through the parking lots during a very emotional and energetic drive-thru diploma pick-up ceremony that capped off a memorable Graduation Day at the school on Thursday.

Union Catholic’s 55th annual Commencement festivities, which were moving and ...

St. Bartholomew Academy in Scotch Plains Announces New Principal as Sister Elizabeth Calello Retires

SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- After serving as principal of St. Bartholomew Academy for the past 12 years, Sister Elizabeth Calello, MPF, has decided to retire. A letter announcing Sister Elizabeth's retirement was distributed to all parents of Saint Bartholomew Academy Thursday evening. It can be accessed on the school's website ( and social media ...

Slight Majority Support Voting by Mail for NJ's July Primary, Most Unaware of New Primary Date: Rutgers-Eagleton Poll 

May 20, 2020

Biden leads Trump by double digits in 2020 match-up in New Jersey

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ -- Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, 54% of registered voters in New Jersey agree that the state should replace its July primary election – usually an in-person endeavor – entirely with voting by mail, according to the latest Rutgers-Eagleton Poll. Forty-two percent, on the other hand, believe the ...

Union County Clerk Advises Residents on Vote-by-Mail for the July 7 Primary

UNION COUNTY, NJ -- Union County Clerk Joanne Rajoppi advises residents that Gov. Phil Murphy has ordered that the upcoming July 7 Primary Election will take place primarily by mail-in ballot, in order to help reduce the spread of the COVID-19 virus. Existing New Jersey state law permits all eligible voters to use a mail-in ballot, for any reason.

“My office has anticipated that ...

Downtown Westfield’s ‘Girls’ Night In’ Shines Light on Local Businesses

May 30, 2020

WESTFIELD, NJ — Girls’ Night Out in Downtown Westfield, a popular yearly event supporting downtown businesses, went virtual Thursday, becoming “Girls’ Night In” to meet the challenges of social distancing.

Along with special promotions from shops and restaurants, there was a live-streamed video “pre-party” Thursday afternoon that spotlighted some of ...

Scotch Plains Farmers Market Reopens with Social Distancing Rules in Place

SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- The Scotch Plains Farmers Market reopened on Saturday, May 23, with social distancing rules in place. Masks are required and people in line at vendors must stay six feet apart.

Many longtime JerseyFresh™ farmers -- including Ort Farms, Asprocolas Acres, and Corner-Copia -- returned, as did Stella's Empanadas, Pickelicious, the Hummus Broad and the ...

Scotch Plains Farmers Market Opens Saturday, May 23

SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- This Saturday, May 23, will be Opening Day at the Scotch Plains Farmers Market featuring the "Best of the Best" vendors.

"Three of our incredible, longtime, local, conventional JerseyFresh™ farmers -- including Ort Farms, Asprocolas Acres, and Corner-Copia -- will be here, and many of your other favorite vendors as well," said Jeffrey Stein ...

Scotch Plains, Fanwood Police Chiefs Issue Statement Condemning Killing of George Floyd 

May 31, 2020


SCOTCH PLAINS/FANWOOD, NJ -- Ted Conley, Chief of Scotch Plains Police Department, and Chief Richard Trigo of the Fanwood Police Department have issued a joint statement to condemn the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis last week. 

We are writing this statement to the residents of Scotch Plains and Fanwood to announce our official condemnation of the actions ...

New Jersey State PBA Issues Statement Condemning George Floyd Killing in Minneapolis

NEW JERSEY -- New Jersey State Policemen's Benevolent Association President Patrick Colligan on Saturday released the following statement on George Floyd, Derek Chauvin and the tragedy in Minneapolis.

“The horror that unfolded in Minneapolis is painful for us all. The actions that we saw on video are contrary to all our training and does harm to the good reputation of the ...

'Justice for George Floyd,' Police March Alongside Hundreds in Camden

CAMDEN, NJ — A police lieutenant shouted, “No justice!”

And hundreds responded, "No peace!"

Protests against police brutality have unfolded across the nation over the weekend following the death of George Floyd.

Perhaps nowhere as uniquely as in Camden, where officers and the police chief on Saturday stood hand in hand ...

Positively SPF: Elite Performing Arts Center Food Drive

May 30, 2020

SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- Elite Performing Arts Center Dancers (South Ave. in Scotch Plains) hosted a food drive on Saturday, May 30, from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Members of the community helped by donating over 70 bags of non-perishable items that they brought to churches for those in need during this difficult time.

"I am proud to say the kids were able to provide 74 bags ...

Scotch Plains Sanitation Workers Help Woman Rescue Engagement Ring from Garbage Incinerator

WESTFIELD, NJ — Sherry Cronin knew finding her engagement ring and an accompanying earring that found their way in the garbage would be a challenge, but she tried anyway — and her trip to the incinerator paid off.

Cronin, who has been married to her husband, John, for 25 years determined that the ring had gone out with the garbage Friday morning and so over the weekend called ...

Jersey Shore Musicians Festival Features Fanwood's Glenn Stuart of B Street Band

FANWOOD, NJ -- Fanwood's Glenn Stuart of B Street Band will be among the performers of the NJ Shore Musicians Online Music Festival that takes place Memorial Day Weekend (May 23-25) on Facebook Live. 

The event has assembled a lineup of the best local Jersey Shore musicians, each of whom will perform their favorite songs for a 30- to 45-minute set curated to lift ...

Pandemic-Related Decline in Childhood Vaccines Prompts State's Plea to Parents

May 28, 2020

Special to TAPintoSPF. This story was written and produced by NJ Spotlight. It is being republished under a special NJ News Commons content-sharing agreement related to COVID-19 coverage. To read more, visit

Dept. of Health urges pediatricians to devise new office protocols to keep patients and parents safe from coronavirus, reduce fear ...

NJ Medicaid Takes Action to Ensure Nursing Home Residents Receive Federal Stimulus Checks

NJ Human Services Issues Guidance Making Clear Long-Term Care Facility Residents Are Entitled to Their Checks

TRENTON, NJ –  Department of Human Services Commissioner Carole Johnson today released guidance making clear that individuals with Medicaid coverage who reside in long-term care facilities are entitled to receive their federal stimulus payments and the payments cannot ...

New Jersey Making Slow, Steady Progress to Universal COVID-19 Testing

Special to TAPintoSPF. This story was written and produced by NJ Spotlight. It is being republished under a special NJ News Commons content-sharing agreement related to COVID-19 coverage. To read more, visit

New Jersey officials said universal COVID-19 testing has now been completed at a handful of state-run facilities that house vulnerable populations — ...

Fanwood-Scotch Plains Rotary and Holy Trinity Catholic Church Fill Urgent Requests from Hospital Nurses

May 22, 2020

Fanwood-Scotch Plains Rotary Club Plays Key Role in Supplying Needed Items

WESTFIELD, NJ  -- Holy Trinity Roman Catholic Church in Westfield has taken a leadership role during this Covid-19 crisis to supply hundreds of needed items to area hospitals, according to Lori Arena, RN, Holy Trinity Parish Nurse. These items include dozens of patient care packages, antiseptic bottles, prayer ...

Archdiocese of Newark Will Close 10 Catholic Schools

Difficult Decision Will Strengthen Schools, Safeguard Future of Catholic Education; At-Home Learning Continues Through End of School Year 

The Archdiocese of Newark has announced the consolidation of its school community and the closure of nine archdiocesan-operated elementary schools at the end of this school year, the result of archdiocesan strategic planning efforts to ...

Sister Irma Gazzillo, SSJ, Beloved Member of the Union Catholic Community, Has Died

Scotch Plains, NJ -- Sister Irma Gazzillo, SSJ, a beloved member of the Union Catholic community who was inducted into Union Catholic's Hall of Fame this past fall, passed away on Friday, May 1.

Erminia Gazzillo grew up in the Germantown section of Philadelphia and attended Little Flower High School for Girls. Upon graduation in 1951, she entered the Sisters of Saint Joseph, entering the ...

NJSIAA Statement on Resumption of High School Sports in New Jersey

May 31, 2020

NJSIAA STATEMENT on Executive Order #149 - Return to Sports

The governor’s executive order (EO #149) regarding organized sports is a positive step.

Specifically related to high school athletics, this executive order makes it clear that interscholastic sports may resume in accordance with reopening protocols issued by the NJSIAA – which, in turn, will be based on ...

Scotch Plains-Fanwood HS Athletic Director Ryan Miller Named to NJSIAA's COVID-19 Sports Task Force

SCOTCH PLAINS/FANWOOD, NJ – Scotch Plains-Fanwood High School athletic director Ryan Miller has been appointed to the NJSIAA's new COVID-19 Sports Advisory Task Force, a group of athletic directors from across the state who will consider a wide range of sports-specific proposals and recommendations with a focus on implementing, executing and enforcing potential modifications. The ...

When Will Pools Reopen in NJ? Competitive Swimmers Push for Reopening

TRENTON, NJ -- While parents and students of New Jersey high schools rejoiced in finally getting guidance on graduations at Gov. Phil Murphy's press conference on Tuesday, questions regarding whether area pools will open this summer remain unanswered.

"I will just comment that outdoor pools are still on the list of, they're a little bit more complicated," Murphy said.

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Wardlaw+Hartridge Lower School Embraces Virtual Community Field Day

EDISON, NJ -- The first-ever virtual Field Day turned into an enormous success, with Lower School students and parents participating in a community oriented challenge event that incorporated many interesting aspects.

Students in from PreK-Grade 5 were divided into teams of Green and Gold during the daylong event, which triggered thousands of posts on SeeSaw. Students and their families ...

Wardlaw+Hartridge Eighth Graders Deliver Capstone Presentations

EDISON, NJ -- Eighth grade students at The Wardlaw+Hartridge School in Edison addressed a variety of interesting topics during a series of well-executed virtual Capstone presentations last week. Nine students participated in this year’s program:

Gbemi Olarewaju of Piscataway – Water Shortages in sub-Saharan Africa; Tiger Huang of Edison – Impact of Artificial ...

Wardlaw+Hartridge Thespians Win Theatre Night Awards

EDISON, NJ -- Mayah Nissim of Scotch Plains and Sahil Mulji of Edison, seniors at The Wardlaw+Hartridge School in Edison, won the equivalent of an Oscar in their categories of distinction at the Montclair State University's Theatre Night Foxy Awards, which was held virtually on May 19. Mayah won for Outstanding Performance by a Supporting Actress in a Work of Innovation & ...

Wardlaw+Hartridge Students Inducted Into World Language Honor Societies

EDISON, NJ -- The Wardlaw+Hartridge School in Edison held its annual World Language Honor Societies induction ceremony on May 28. This year’s event was a virtual presentation. 

Esther Faus, World Language Department Chair, delivered the welcome, which was followed by the Introduction to the Honor Societies, Candle Ceremony and Honor Society Oaths. Twenty-three Upper School ...

Wardlaw+Hartridge Middle School Students Share Talents in Show

EDISON, NJ -- Middle School students at The Wardlaw+Hartridge School in Edison provided a wonderful hour of entertainment in last week’s Rising Stars Talent and Variety Show. The event, which was live-streamed on Vimeo and Facebook Live, included vocal, instrumental and dance performances.

Among the show’s many highlights were a piano vocal by Julia Machado (pictured) of ...

Wardlaw+Hartridge Band Members Perform in Virtual Concert

EDISON, NJ -- Fourth and fifth grade musicians at The Wardlaw+Hartridge School in Edison shared their talents in a virtual format in an entertaining Lower School Instrumental Concert. Under the direction of instructor Mr. Matt Bergman, students performed a variety of short pieces at home on flute, trumpet, clarinet, trombone, saxophone euphonium and ...

Union County Residents Can “Recycle Right” without Plastic Bags

The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders would like to remind residents that plastic bags and other unacceptable items should not be placed in curbside recycling bins.

“Union County residents have a good recycling rate, but we want to improve on this record and set a high bar,” said Freeholder Chairman Al Mirabella. “Every household can pitch in by following some simple ...

Union County Freeholders Offer Free Mobile App to Connect Residents with Recycling Information

The Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders urges residents to download Recycle Coach to get reminded of their curbside recycling schedule, learn about upcoming county recycling events, get advised of any changes or interruptions to service and learn the best ways to recycle.  The free app is designed to help make recycling and solid waste information more accessible to County residents and ...

Restaurant Business Down, NJ Distributors Are Selling Straight to Consumers

May 31, 2020

Duck legs confit. Waygu burgers. Anduille sausage. These items from meat supplier D’Artagnan typically would be headed to restaurants, but due to COVID-19 much of it is on its way to homes, instead.

“We got into this because the restaurants disappeared,” said D’Artagnan President Andy Wertheim. “This is a question of finding another way to get the product into ...

New Jersey Date Night: Chicken Restaurants That Sizzle

New Jersey Date Night is a series on NJ Flavor by relationship writer Craig Rogers.

Before you know it, our date nights can actually happen at a table in a restaurant! As New Jersey begins to slowly emerge from stay-at-home rules, couples are itching to get our and experience something hot. How about something sizzling found in a basket, on a plate or inside a bucket?

When it comes to ...

NJ’s CSAs Stepping Up to Provide Local Food During Pandemic

As people avoid going into grocery stores during the coronavirus pandemic, many in New Jersey are turning to CSAs as an alternate source for fresh food.

CSAs, or community supported agriculture programs, connect local farmers with consumers. They typically provide locally grown fruits, vegetables and herbs. Some also offer other kinds of locally produced foods, such as eggs, cheese, ...

NJ Bars Still Closed, but Now You Can Get That Cocktail to Go

NEW JERSEY — Bars and restaurants with liquor licenses in the Garden State have been able to sell alcohol in its original containers during the COVID-19 crisis. Now, thanks to legislation signed by Gov. Phil Murphy before the weekend, they can sell mixed drinks for pick up and delivery, too.

Craft distilleries, which operate under a different kind of license, can also sell ...

Coronavirus Pandemic Adds to the Admiration as Hospital Honors Local EMS Members

Overlook Medical Center celebrated the work of the dedicated EMS first responders throughout the communities it serves with awards, gifts and other recognition as part of the national EMS Week, May 18–22.

“The first responders throughout our region have been our steadfast partners through the height of the pandemic, and their collaboration in caring for our patients during this ...

Atlantic Health System Leads Phase 1 Study on CPI-613® (Devimistat), First-in-Class Treatment for Pancreatic Cancer to be Presented at American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) 2020

Atlantic Health System Cancer Care’s Angela Alistar, MD, medical director of GI medical oncology at Morristown Medical Center and medical director of the Phase 1 Breakthrough Treatment Center, is lead author of a phase 1 study of CPI-613® (devimistat), a unique first-in-class treatment for locally advanced or metastatic pancreatic cancer, in combination with two chemotherapy drugs.

Community Conversations: Is It Safe To Have Surgery?

James C. Wittig, MD, chairman, Orthopedic Surgery, Morristown Medical Center, medical director of Orthopedic Surgery, Orthopedic Oncology and Sarcoma Surgery for Atlantic Health System, joined host Luke Margolis for the latest edition of our Facebook Live event series, Community Conversations. Dr. Wittig shared what our patients need to know before having an important surgery that’s been ...

Surprising Benefits of the Virtual Visit

When Atlantic Health System put telehealth into effect to help control the spread of COVID-19, I thought, I’m going to hate it. I felt strongly that there’s no substitute for in-person visits, and expected that trying to communicate using video apps would be cumbersome. So I was surprised to find that there are some real benefits to virtual medicine.

I noticed, for example, a ...

Protect Your Health: Do Not Put Off Important Medical Care

The safety of patients and team members is Atlantic Health System’s top priority. To make sure emergency departments across Atlantic Health’s hospitals remain safe for every patient who enters, reconfigured processes and facilities are in place to optimize safety and improve the patient experience.

All care is delivered with strict rules around social distancing, universal mask ...

Atlantic Health System Earns New Level of Recognition for Environmental Sustainability, its Overlook Campus Again Taking Top Honors

Atlantic Health System achieved a new level of recognition for its accomplishments in environmental sustainability, receiving the System for Change Award from Practice Greenhealth, the nation’s leading organization dedicated to environmental sustainability in health care. Its Overlook Medical Center once again earned Practice Greenhealth’s highest honor, the Top 25 Environmental ...

In Westfield, Displays of Solidarity Amid National Outrage Over George Floyd's Death (VIDEO)

May 31, 2020

WESTFIELD, NJ — Contrasting larger and often jarring protests across the state and nation, demonstrators in Mindowaskin Park Sunday spoke of cooperation between law enforcement and the local community as they condemned police violence elsewhere.

“Stop Police Brutality,” “Justice for George Floyd” and “Racism in not Welcome in Westfield” were ...

Shop Owner's Facebook Live Stream Shut Down by Bernardsville Police for Violating Executive Order

May 20, 2020

BERNARDSVILLE, NJ  — The owner of a gift shop in downtown Bernardsville had her live-streamed Facebook sales demonstration from inside her store interrupted early on Tuesday evening by a borough police officer.

Katherine Hermes, owner of Country Home in Olcott Square, was displaying her merchandise in her store to a live Facebook audience when she received a knock on her door ...

No One Can Make You Feel Guilty

We often think that others are responsible for making us feel guilty. This is not true. 

Others may try to manipulate us by saying certain things to make us feel guilty and at times they are very effective in causing us self-doubt. However, the reason that manipulators are able to make us feel guilty is that a part of us agree with their message and the doubt already exists in ...

Lockdown with Your Partner -- Togetherness and Separateness

While some couples prefer autonomy and independence in a relationship, others enjoy a strong emotional connection. One partner may want to talk things through and need to always feel connected, reassured while the other will be more distant and removed.  When the partner remains removed and distant, we then continue to pursue even more. As we pursue, the distancer retreats and ...

Anxiety Can Spread Just Like COVID-19

When a family becomes stressed, everyone feels anxious. The anxiety moves easily from person to person in the family. Anxiety that affects one, affects all. It can be contagious.

For the past several months, our country and our communities have gone through a very stressful time. In some states, restrictions are beginning to get lifted while others remain the same. We are tired of hearing ...

How Do We Celebrate Mother’s Day During COVID-19

For many of us, social distancing will make Mother’s Day challenging this year. Our traditional way of celebrating has changed. Due to the numerous stay-at-home orders in place this year, mothers may find themselves alternatively living with or without their children. Some moms may be isolated from their children and their grandchildren. Enjoying a family dinner out in one of our ...

Missing Jews

How many Jews are there in the world? 13 million? Perhaps 14 million, if you’re generous. How many Jews were there before World War II? Apparently the number was around the 19 million mark. So if we deduct the six million wiped out in the Holocaust, we are down to 13 million—which is exactly where we are today. So the colossal question is this: Where are all the missing Jews? Or, ...

New Jersey Prosecutors Issue Statement on George Floyd Death

May 31, 2020

Message from the County Prosecutors Association of New Jersey

The images of George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis are deeply disturbing.  Mr. Floyd’s death is being investigated not only by the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office, the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the FBI in Minneapolis, but by the U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights division, as it should be.

As ...

Be 'Street' Smart Now That Warm Weather Has Arrived

May 23, 2020

It’s hard being stuck inside, and not being able to visit family and friends makes it even more difficult. Now that warm temperatures are here, getting outside and being more active is a nice respite from the isolation and boredom of the last couple of months.

Lately, it’s very common to see adults and children walking, biking, and skateboarding throughout neighborhoods while ...

Iconic Clark Business to Close, Bernie’s Westbrant Owner to Retire After Decades of Service

May 30, 2020

CLARK, NJ – After 67 years, Bernie’s Westbrant Auto Parts and Repairs will permanently close its doors on July 17, 2020.   The iconic Clark business has anchored the intersection of Westfield Avenue and Brant Ave since founder Bernie Gittleman started the business with his wife in 1952.

“Bernie’s has been my heart and soul throughout my entire life,” ...