By Taylor Smith

“I wait for my mother to haunt me as she promised she would; long to wake in the night with the familiar sight of her sitting at the end of my bed, to talk to her one more time, to feel that all the pieces have been put into place, the puzzle is solved, and I can rest.” – Sally Field

The public is invited to “An Afternoon with Sally Field” at Rider University in Lawrenceville on Sunday, October 27 at 1 p.m. The talk is presented by Penn Medicine Princeton Health as part of its Community Wellness programming. Early registration is $40 per person and includes a copy of Field’s memoir, In Pieces. Purchase tickets, here: https://bit.ly/35itbFA more

Charles Addams

By Taylor Smith

Westfield, New Jersey, transforms into all things Charles Addams this October for AddamsFest — a month-long series of events including movie screenings, art exhibits, a masquerade ball, paranormal investigations, a costume contest, and a Halloween House Decorating Contest. more

Mike Bloomberg 

By Taylor Smith 

“Philanthropy gives us a competitive advantage, we think, in recruiting and retaining talent. And I can tell you from personal experience, it is also good for the bottom line, as good a thing a company can do.” —Michael R. Bloomberg

Headquartered on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, Bloomberg Philanthropies was founded in 2006 with the purpose of directing funding and research to five major areas: the environment, public health, the arts, government innovation, and education. By “using data in new ways,” Bloomberg Philanthropies routinely shifts policies and advances progress, legislation, and public opinion. As an example, the organization has potentially saved countless lives by creating solutions proven to curb global tobacco use. According to bloomberg.org, “If left unchecked, tobacco use will kill one billion people this century.”  more

By Taylor Smith 

On Thursday, October 10 at 8 p.m., former U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry will deliver a talk at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC) in Newark. The event is presented by Fairleigh Dickinson University and is part of the New Jersey Speaker Series at NJPAC that has previously hosted former FBI Director James Comey, Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer Doris Kearns Goodwin, journalist and political activist Gloria Steinem, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, and Ian Bremmer, founder of the Eurasia Group. All events take place at NJPAC’s Prudential Hall.  more

By Taylor Smith 

Tickets for the 2019 New York City Wine & Food Festival (NYCWFF), to be held October 10-13, are on sale now at https://nycwff.org. 

Since its beginning, NYCWFF has raised over $12.5 million to help fight hunger. One hundred percent of the net proceeds from the event benefit Food Bank for New York City and the No Kid Hungry Campaign to end childhood hunger in America and the five boroughs of New York City. Every year, NYCWFF raises nearly $1 million for these charities, effectively aiding in the quest to end the hunger gap in our country.  more

By Taylor Smith 

Are you a jazz lover?

You won’t want to miss Chris Botti at Count Basie Center for the Arts in Red Bank on Friday, October 4 at 8 p.m. 

Botti is currently the best-selling American instrumental artist in the world, with four No. 1 jazz albums. His 2012 album, Impressions, joins an incredible series of releases, including his 2004 When I Fall In Love. Botti has performed and recorded with Lady Gaga, Yo-Yo Ma, Paul Simon, Joni Mitchell, Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler, Josh Groban, Michael Buble, Sting, Tony Bennett, Joshua Bell, John Mayer, Andrea Bocelli, and Barbara Streisand.  more

By Taylor Smith 

Governor Phil Murphy held a press conference at Newark Liberty International Airport on Monday, June 10 to reveal the 2019 inductees to the New Jersey Hall of Fame. Among this year’s class are Game of Thrones author and Bayonne native George R.R. Martin. Born in 1948, Martin’s father was a longshoreman. Now residing primarily in Santa Fe, N.M., Martin claims to still be a huge fan of the New York Jets, New York Giants, and New York Mets.  more

By Taylor Smith 

David Gray’s Gold in a Brass Age tour will come to Count Basie Center for the Arts in Red Bank on Wednesday, June 5 at 8 p.m.  more

By Taylor Smith 

Industry Salon, located at 20 Broad Street in Red Bank, NJ, is making a name for itself in the fashion and beauty worlds. 

Owner and master colorist Giana Martino grew up in Monmouth County’s Marlboro, NJ and dreamed of entering into the family business of one day owning her own salon. Specializing in bridal looks, Martino’s work has been featured in Vogue Magazine, London Sunday Times, looks by Yves St Laurent, and the talent and modeling agency, Wilhelmina Models.  more

By Taylor Smith 

On view through February 10, “Mickey: The True Original Exhibition” is at 60 10th Avenue in New York City. The 16,000-square-foot space in Chelsea, very close to The High Line, features both nostalgic and modern works from international artists, all of whom are inspired by classic images of the graphic, black-and-white mouse.  more

By Taylor Smith 

The mecca for all objects by designer John Derian is located across three distinct shopfront spaces at 6 East Second Street between 2nd Avenue and the Bowery in New York City. Derian’s signature découpage glassware is accompanied by hand-selected French and American antiques, home decor, linens, fine art, and accent pieces from around the world. A must-register destination for those who crave charming whimsy combined with craftsmen-like artisanship, customers can direct all inquiries to 212.677.1003.  more

Celebrating the release of his latest album, Raise Vibration, the GRAMMY® Museum Experience™ Prudential Center in association with NJPAC, will welcome four-time GRAMMY winner Lenny Kravitz to NJPAC’s Victoria Theater on Tuesday, September 18, 2018 8:00 PM.

Moderated by five-time GRAMMY winner Questlove, a musical force all his own, Kravitz will discuss the creation of, and inspiration behind his latest work. Regarded as one of the preeminent rock musicians of our time, Kravitz has transcended genre, style, race and class over the course of a 20-year musical career. Reveling in the soul, rock and funk influences of the ‘60s and ‘70s, the writer, producer and multi-instrumentalist has won four consecutive GRAMMY Awards, as well as set a record for the most wins in the Best Male Rock Vocal Performance category. more

By Taylor Smith 

Photography by Tom Grimes

The youngest son of Massachusetts Senator Ted Kennedy and Virginia Joan Kennedy, Patrick Kennedy has put down roots in Brigantine, New Jersey with his wife, Amy, and four children, Harper, Owen, Nora, and Nell. Amy is expecting their fifth child in May. A New Jersey native, Amy has more than 15 years’ experience working in New Jersey public schools and is the education director of The Kennedy Forum. Patrick lovingly refers to Amy as his “Jersey girl,” who grew up in a neighboring shore town. Located on the bayside of the Jersey Shore, a stone’s throw from Atlantic City, the Kennedy’s waterfront home is centered around family and the beauty of the natural setting. On the day of Urban Agenda Magazine’s visit, seagulls were dive-bombing around Patrick’s boat and fine grains of sand blew across the roadway. more

The Leonard Bernstein and Jerome Robbins Centennials

By Donald H. Sanborn III

Legendary American composer, conductor, pianist, educator, and humanitarian Leonard Bernstein (1918-1990) once said, “I can’t live one day without hearing music, playing it, studying it, or thinking about it.” Audiences and museum visitors are having multiple opportunities this year to hear Bernstein’s music and think about it. In March, Princeton University’s Richardson Chamber Players presented “Bernstein and Friends: A Centennial Celebration.” Institutions such as Symphony Space and the National Museum of American Jewish History also will celebrate the maestro’s centennial. Aficionados of the work of choreographer Jerome Robbins (1918-1998) will have similar opportunities. more

Taylor Smith

A rare joint appearance by two old friends at the 92nd Street Y in New York on Monday, April 23 at 8 p.m. at the Kaufmann Concert Hall. Julian Barnes’s new novel, a poignant tale of first love and long memory, is The Only Story. “He reveals crystalline truths that have taken a lifetime to harden,” wrote The New York Times.  more

Biden was the guest of the Thomas H. Kean Visiting Lectureship at Drew University in Madison, NJ.

Written by Drew University’s Office of Communications

On the presidency: ‘I’m not sure I’m ready to go, (if) my family is ready to go.’

Former Vice President Joe Biden, speaking at Drew University, described a breakdown in the American political system that has given rise to what he described as “naked nationalism” and “senseless populism.”

The former frames the world as us versus them while the latter places majority rule above liberty, individual rights and due process, according to Biden. The remedy, he said, is nothing short of active participation in democracy—be it voting, protesting, running for office or demanding accountability from political leaders. In short, stand up for the “moral fabric” of America. more

The “Gilded Cage” at the 60th Street and 5th Avenue entrance to Central Park is one of the major installations in Ai Weiwei’s “Good Fences Make Good Neighbors.” (Photo by Phil Roeder, via Flickr)

By Doug Wallack

Acclaimed artist and Chinese dissident Ai Weiwei unveiled a multi-site, multi-media project entitled “Good Fences Make Good Neighbors” this fall, in conjunction with the Public Art Fund. The work — which consists of 300 site-specific pieces scattered throughout the five boroughs of New York City — explores the issues of resurgent nationalism and populism that have been the subjects of so much public debate this year, playing on the central visual motif of the border fence. more

Ring in the Holidays at Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank

The iconic guitarist, songwriter, vocalist and three-time Grammy-Award winner Brian Setzer and his 19-piece orchestra whip up a huge dose of retro holiday cheer with their Christmas Rocks! Tour presented by SiriusXM at Count Basie Theatre in Red Bank on Tuesday, November 21 at 7:30 p.m.  more

Off-Broadway debuting star Doreen Taylor (Photo by Michael Pearson)

By Doug Wallack

On Friday, October 27, recording artist and off-Broadway debuting star Doreen Taylor launches her “docu-musical” show An Enchanted Evening with Oscar Hammerstein II at Highland Farm in Doylestown, Pa. The show, the proceeds from which will go to the Hammerstein Center, is part of a larger effort to save the former home of Oscar Hammerstein II at Highland Farm, and to repurpose it as a museum and theater education center.

 more

Saturday, October 28 at 2 and 7:30 p.m. at NJPAC in Newark

This unforgettable concert will feature the full-length film Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets™, projected in high-definition on a giant screen, with composer John Williams’ thrilling score performed live by the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra. Performances will take place at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, October 28 at NJPAC in Newark. more

By Doug Wallack

Quoted in the December 1963 Life article in which she famously coined the “Camelot” epithet for her late husband’s presidency, Jacqueline Kennedy says, “Once, the more I read of history, the more bitter I got. For a while I thought history was something that bitter old men wrote. But then I realized history made Jack what he was.” She goes on to outline a vision of a young John F. Kennedy for whom history was a great repository of heroes and role models—a catalyst for his own idealism. more

Princeton’s new poet laureate, Tracy K. Smith. Princeton University, Office of Communications, photography by Denise Applewhite.

By Stuart Mitchner 

If you don’t count nursery rhymes, songs, and “The Night Before Christmas,” the first time poetry happened to me was at the end of the Classic Comic of Moby Dick. Each issue closed with “Highlights in the Life” of the author. Herman Melville’s ended with four couplets from a poem “published during the Civil War” that “best expresses our bewilderment of today.” I had no idea what was meant by “bewilderment.” I was 6. The Second World War was still going on. A red, white, and blue banner at the bottom of the page contained a Buy United States War Savings Bonds stamp. The lines that struck and stayed with me were these: “Can no final good be wrought?/ Over and over, again and again,/Must the fight for the Right be fought?” I had only a vague sense of the meaning beyond its being patriotic; what resonated, and still does, was the infectious play of rhyme and rhythm, especially the way it rocks the last line. more

“The best, most effective medicine my soul has yet partaken”

By Stuart Mitchner 

Sorting out his first impressions of Walt Whitman in a letter from November 1856, Henry David Thoreau admits feeling “much interested and provoked“: “Though peculiar and rough in his exterior,…he is essentially a gentleman. I am still somewhat in a quandary about him…He told us that he loved to ride up and down Broadway all day on an omnibus, sitting beside the driver, listening to the roar of the carts, and sometimes gesticulating and declaiming Homer at the top of his voice.” more

By Sarah Emily Gilbert 

In the early 1800s, the southern banks of the Navesink River bustled with steamboats, sailboats, and commercial fishermen transporting shellfish and local crops to New York City. In 1908, the area was incorporated into the town of Red Bank, whose name is attributed to the clay found along its coast. Come 2017, you’ll still find sailors and fisherman along these red banks, but you’ll also find young professionals on their way to stand-up paddle yoga. Indeed, some of Red Bank’s 12,200 residents start their day floating on the Navesink River with Flow Paddle Yoga. Others grab a Rook Coffee before walking their dogs past the shops on Broad Street.  more

Tracy K. Smith, the Roger S. Berlind ’52 Princeton University Professor in the Humanities and a professor of creative writing in the Lewis Center for the Arts, has been named the 22nd Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry for 2017-18.

Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden announced the appointment today. Ms. Smith will take up her duties in the fall, opening the Library of Congress’s annual literary season with a reading of her work at the Coolidge Auditorium. more

Crocheted Wall Street bull, pic by Olek, NYC, 2010.

By Sarah Emily Gilbert 

Leather, move over.

Furs and leathers are surrounded by controversy for their use of animal skins. They represent the exotic, the risqué, and the fierce. Yarn, on the other hand, comes from goat farms and often suggests homespun domesticity and grandmothers. However, the typically unsexy material is undergoing a revival. Thanks to women who are using the medium in unconventional ways, yarn is becoming a means of personal expression. more

By Donald H. Sanborn III

For most Broadway musicals, the “composer” creates only the songs, usually providing vocal lines with piano accompaniment. Other musicians, including an orchestrator, prepare the score for performance. The orchestrator adjusts a composition “to fit…whatever orchestral combination has been selected,” Broadway orchestrator Don Walker writes in his autobiography. In the 1940s, Webster’s Dictionary came out with a second meaning for orchestrate: “to arrange or combine so as to achieve a maximum effect.” more

It all began in Hoboken

By Doug Wallack

In October of 1845—though historians will disagree on precisely when—the first game of baseball under the modern rules took place on the Elysian Fields in Hoboken, New Jersey. The New York Base Ball Club (later known as the Knickerbockers) faced off against the Brooklyn Club, and beat them handily. It was there that the 90-foot distance between bases was established—a rule that was to be practically as fundamental to the sport as gravity itself. Today, those particular bases are long gone, as are the Elysian Fields themselves—swallowed up by the urban landscape, with only a bronze plaque to mark where they once were. more

Photo Credit: @laurasykora in K-DEER leggings.

Friday, March 31

10:30 to 11 a.m.: Wee Ones Laptime at Westwood Library in Westwood, NJ. Perfect for babies – age 2. Free to attend.

11 a.m.: Yoga class at Holy Name Medical Center in Teaneck, NJ.

7 p.m.: Book signing with Andrew McCarthy at Books & Greetings in Northvale, NJ. McCarthy is an actor, director, and travel writer.  more

Photo Credit: @kendrascott

Oh the possibilities!

By Sarah Emily Gilbert 

Meet us at the bar – The Kendra Scott Color Bar™, that is. We’ve all spent hours looking for that piece of jewelry we “had in mind,” but with Color Bar, we can get it out of our heads and into our hands. At Kendra Scott, you can build your own necklaces, earrings, rings, or bracelets either online or in store. Play jewelry designer as you select the style, stone, and metal from an array of options. Among the 18 colorful stones are of-the-moment gems like rose quartz and gold and platinum drusy. more