Princeton University’s Fund for Irish Studies presents a conversation with award winning novelist, dramatist, and screenwriter Roddy Doyle led by scholar and critic Frintan O’Toole, co-chair of the series, on Friday, September 17 at 4:30 p.m. via Zoom. Princeton’s Howard G.B. Clark University Professor of the Humanities Paul Muldoon, co-chair of the series, will provide a welcome and introduction. The event opens the 2021-22 series, which will be virtual for the fall. The event is free and open to the public.

Doyle has written 12 novels, including The Commitments; Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha, for which he won the Booker Prize in 1993; The Woman Who Walked Into Doors; and, most recently, Love. His latest book, a story collection called Life Without Children,will be published in the U.S. in spring 2022. Doyle has written eight books for children. He has also written for screen and stage. He is the co-founder of Fighting Words, which aims to help Irish children and young people to discover and harness the power of their own imaginations and creative writing skills. He lives in Dublin. more

Join Morven Museum & Garden on Sunday, October 17 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. for a special workshop presentation with duck decoy Master Carver Jode Hillman. “The Art of Deception: Techniques and Theory of Creating a Three-Dimensional Black Duck Silhouette Decoy” will be an on-site class, held outdoors, masked, and socially distanced. All supplies and materials will be provided. Lunch will also be included from Brick Farm Market (selections to be made the week before class). Attendees are asked to dress for the outdoors and weather. Class size is limited to eight students. more

Makes top lists for theater, race/class interaction, and radio station

Drew University has made The Princeton Review’s annual “The Best 387” nation’s top schools. Drew has made the list every year since its debut in 1992.

The list, which includes only about 14 percent of the schools in the country, praised Drew for its 60-plus majors and minors, seven NYC semesters, top-ranked theater program, impressive science departments, engaging and dedicated faculty, and myriad research opportunities. more

Outdoor labyrinth provides opportunity to focus on spiritual well-being

A new outdoor labyrinth is nestled behind the residential Witherspoon Apartments on Princeton Theological Seminary’s Charlotte Rachel Wilson Campus. Along with many helping hands, Student Life Resident Daniel Heath, MDiv ’20, dreamed of the idea and coordinated the design and recent completion of the labyrinth.

The previously unused space is now an ecofriendly gathering place for students and their families with a labyrinth at the center. At nearly 50 feet in diameter, it is one of the largest labyrinths in the Princeton area. more

State grants will increase student engagement and support academic progress.

Montclair State University will receive more than $1.4 million from the state of New Jersey to support programs that help to address the impacts of COVID-19 on postsecondary students.

Gov. Phil Murphy and Secretary of Higher Education Brian Bridges announced the grants on July 12, with Montclair State among 35 public and public-mission private institutions receiving $30 million in state aid to implement vetted best practices that increase college completion, address barriers to student success, and develop sustainable systemic reforms. more

There’s nothing like drawing in an even larger group of your community’s kids because of your community’s own generosity.

Trenton Music Makers was honored to learn that it would be part of the cohort of grantees supported by the Trenton Arts Endowment Fund of the Princeton Area Community Foundation. The Fund will support the live 2021-22 opening of the after-school orchestra’s “Open Strings” project, begun online during the earliest days of the pandemic lockdown. more

As of August 2021, Drew University in Madison, N.J., has announced the addition of new majors in cybersecurity and statistics, as well as a dual-degree cybersecurity program with New York University. These new majors join an already robust selection of concentrations from the liberal arts college.

The new major in cybersecurity will be available in fall 2021. The program will offer a liberal arts approach with flexibility through elective offerings for students to choose emphases in software, systems, or interdisciplinary contexts.

Undergraduate degrees in cybersecurity are a rarity in higher education and the program’s liberal arts emphasis will further separate it from the few contemporary programs offered in the U.S. more

Now through September 6, grab a prehistoric passport and join over 40 giant moving dinosaurs on a globetrotting expedition at Dino Safari, a completely drive-thru dino adventure for the whole family at Westfield Garden State Plaza in Paramus.

Get up-close-and-personal with the most fascinating prehistoric creatures from the mighty T. Rex of North America to the giant amphibious Spinosaurus from Africa while you learn how dinosaurs evolved over time, where on earth they lived, and the discoveries paleontologists have made about how they ate, moved, and behaved. more

Discover the Stuart advantage at Stuart Country Day School of the Sacred Heart’s Virtual Discovery Day on Tuesday, August 17 at 6 p.m. This event will provide prospective families and students with the opportunity to engage with current teachers, administrators, and students. Register online at https://www.stuartschool.org/admissions/register-for-an-open-classroom. For questions regarding the admissions application process, email Director of Admissions Joe Petitto at jpetitto@stuartschool.org.

As the only all-girls school in Princeton, Stuart has been educating girls for lives of exceptional leadership and service since 1963. Situated on 55 acres in the Princeton Ridge, Stuart provides an environment where girls put academics first and are willing to explore and take risks. The challenging curriculum includes the STEM fields of science, technology, engineering, and math, as well as the arts, humanities, and athletics. Stuart enrolls girls in JK-12 and has a co-ed Early Childhood Program. more

Did you know that September is National Fungus Month?

Join Bowman’s Hill Wildflower Preserve of Bucks County virtually to celebrate these fascinating organisms by learning the basics of mushroom foraging and documenting fungi using a sketchbook. This multi-week course runs from Tuesday, September 7 at 6:30 p.m. through Tuesday, September 28 at 8:30 p.m. Develop your drawing skills by depicting mushrooms in graphite. Go on to create a pleasing composition and design a watercolor painting. These virtual lessons are suitable for all age levels. more

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology recently launched a free birding app, called Merlin Bird ID, which enables users to identify the birds they see or hear, anywhere, at any time. 

The Bird ID Wizard asks users to answer three simple questions about the bird they are trying to identify, and Merlin will reply with a list of possible matches. Merlin offers quick and accurate identification for all levels of bird watchers to help them learn about birds across the Americas, Asia, Europe, Africa, and Oceania. Sample questions may include, “What size was the bird?” “What were the main colors?” and “What was the bird doing?”  more

On August 16, from 7 to 8 p.m., Princeton Public Library presents a virtual Poets at the Library featuring readers Catherine Doty and John David Muth. Each reader will share their work for 20 minutes followed by an open mic session. Poets who sign-up in advance may share one poem during open mic. To sign-up via crowdcast to attend this virtual event, or to reserve a spot during open mic, visit https://princetonlibrary.libnet.info/event/5414024.

Doty is a poet, cartoonist, and educator from Paterson. She is the author of Wonderama and Momentum, volumes of poems from CavanKerry Press and Just Kidding, a collection of cartoons from Avocet Press. She is the recipient of a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as an Academy of American Poets Prize and fellowships from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts and the New York Foundation for the Arts. more

Comte de Rochambeau from “Galerie des Batailles” in the Chateau de Versailles in France.

On Thursday, August 12 at 6 p.m., join Morven Museum for a virtual event exploring the history of Rochambeau’s French officers and soldiers in Princeton in August 1781. The talk will be led by historian and author Robert A. Selig, PhD, as he presents this unique talk just for Morven Museum’s audience.

Marshal Jean-Baptists Donatien de Vimeur, comte de Rochambeau, led the French expeditionary forces through Princeton in August 1781 to help the Continental Army capture Lord Cornwallis at Yorktown. Rochambeau’s army included 5,000 men stationed on the grounds of Morven between August 29-31. Leading his troops from Phillipsburg, N.Y. to central N.J. on separate routes, the allied forces united just north of Princeton, following the encampment of Rochambeau’s men at the site of Morven. 2021 marks the 240th anniversary of this march. There is also a little-known monument to Rochambeau’s encampment on the grounds of Trinity Church in Princeton. more

Rich D’Andrea ’01 (second from right) is inducted into the NJ Lacrosse Hall of Fame during a ceremony at the Fiddler’s Elbow Country Club in Bedminster on July 19. Pictured with D’Andrea is his father, Dan; mother, Darcy; and wife, Ericka Kapp ’98.

Rich D’Andrea ’01, already a Peddie Sports Hall of Fame member (2021), was inducted into the New Jersey Lacrosse Foundation Hall of Fame on July 19.

A three-year starter in goal at Peddie, D’Andrea helped the Falcons to a 44-5 record and two NJISAA Prep A Championships. He was a three-time First Team All-State Selection (’99, ’00, ’01), a two-time All-American (’00, ’01), and was twice the recipient of the Dietrich von Schwerdtner New Jersey Goalie of the Year Award (’00, ’01). In his senior campaign, the Falcons went undefeated (16-0) and earned a Top 15 national ranking. more

Join The Watershed Institute in Pennington on Saturday, August 7 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. for the 21st annual Watershed Butterfly Festival, an in-person celebration of the beauty and joy of nature. This family-friendly event is perfect for children and adults of all ages.

The day begins with tours of the Kate Gorrie Butterfly House and the Insect Zoo. Live music and entertainment will be provided by the Trenton Circus Squad and Eyes of the Wild (an exotic animal rescue show). Kids will delight in participating in the famous Butterfly and Bug Parade led by Lady Monarch, Ms. Allison. more

D&R Greenway welcomes two recent graduates of Princeton University into one-year Fellowships in partnership with Princeton’s AlumniCorps Project 55 program. The program’s motto is to “Launch a life of civic leadership.” They are (from left) Ayame Whitfield and Heather Callahan, shown here at the front door to the newly acquired Gardener’s House at Point Breeze.

Two recent graduates of Princeton University were welcomed into one-year Fellowhips by D&R Greenway, beginning this summer. These Fellowships are provided in partnership with Princeton’s AlumniCorps Project 55 program. This program offers opportunities for exceptional recent graduates to connect with and work with nonprofits. The AlumniCorps Project 55’s motto is “Launch a life of civic leadership.” more

Crosswicks Creek in Bordentown, NJ

Take a self-guided walking tour through the nooks and crannies of New Jersey’s local history! Authored by acclaimed local favorite Bordentown Walking Tours, Tour Takers hear from Mark Neurohr-Pierpaoli, owner and Tour Guide, via engaging videos at each Tour Stop. The app delivers the content and guides Tour Takers with walking directions along the route. more

First TSPS Operators in US, Morristown, NJ, 1969. Courtesy of AT&T Archives and History Center.

Did you or someone you know work for the Bell System in New Jersey?

In March 2022, Morven Museum & Garden will open an exhibition, “Ma Bell: The Mother of Invention in NJ,” that will explore the ways in which the company pioneered innovations that transformed all aspects of modern-day life. more

Are you looking for a fun and peaceful morning? Join guests and volunteers at Bowman’s Hill Wildflower Preserve on Saturday, July 24 from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. for the 2021 North American Butterfly Association (NABA) Butterfly Count. Admission is $3 per participant.  more

Every year, in honor of Independence Day, Morven hosts a free event to celebrate its American heritage at the home-turned-museum of Richard Stockton, a signer of the Declaration of Independence.

This year’s celebration will be different, but hopefully just as meaningful. Participants will not gather as they have in the past. While Morven’s historic gardens remain open for socially distanced events and the museum is typically open Wednesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., the museum will be closed on Sunday, July 4. more

A scenic view of Mt. Zion AME Church. (Photo by Catherine Fulmer Hogan)

Mount Zion African Methodist Episcopal Church, the home of the Stoutsburg Sourland African American Museum (SSAAM), at 189 Hollow Road in Skillman, Montgomery Township, Somerset County, was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on June 7, 2021.

The National Register of Historic Places is the official list of the Nation’s historic places worthy of preservation. Authorized by the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, the National Park Service’s National Register of Historic Places is part of a national program to coordinate and support public and private efforts to identify, evaluate, and protect America’s historic and archeological resources. more

Pictured from left are Jacob Bright ’21, Lauren Hanna ’21, Aqua Withers Carello ’21, Alexis Semidey-Martinez ’21, and Angelo Leon ’21. Not pictured: Kaliyah Myricks ’21.

Six seniors from the George School Class of 2021 have committed to college athletic programs. The student athletes — in four different sports — celebrated their commitment to pursue their passion at the college level next year. In a ceremony held in the Fitness and Athletics Center, each senior was recognized by their families, coaches, teammates, and friends on Friday, May 21, 2021.

The students included Jacob Bright ’21, Lauren Hanna ’21, Angelo Leon ’21, Kaliyah Myricks ’21, Alexis Semidey-Martinez ’21, and Aqua Withers Carello ’21. more

The Princeton Area Community Foundation has awarded $199,000 in COVID-19 Relief & Recovery Fund grants to nonprofits holding summer programs that will include instruction to help students overcome learning loss caused by the pandemic.

“Through these grants, we are helping 25 nonprofits engage 2,900 children in educational and social-emotional learning programs,” said Jeffrey M. Vega, president and CEO of the Community Foundation. “We know COVID-19 caused significant disruptions to education, especially for students living in under-resourced communities, and we hope these grants will help young people rebound from some of that learning loss and re-engage children in the many community-based programs that were forced to shut down last year. We also invite other donors to join us in working to help nonprofits recover from the pandemic.” more

Camp Rim Rock for Girls in Yellow Spring, West Virginia is consistently voted the best overnight all girls camp in the United States (https://camprimrock.com).

Governor Phil Murphy and Department of Health Commissioner Judy Persichilli recently announced the new guidelines for both sleepaway and day camps for the summer 2021 season. Both overnight and day camps will be fully operational this summer with some distinct COVID guidelines to keep campers and families safe. more

Waldorf School of Princeton (WSP), located at 1062 Cherry Hill Road, will hold an in-person Open House on Saturday, May 22 from 10 a.m. to noon. Waldorf serves children from early childhood through eighth grade. RSVP at https://www.princetonwaldorf.org/upcomingevents. 

The Waldorf School of Princeton is part of a rapidly growing global education movement that is dedicated to igniting each child’s unique potential and passions. The rich interdisciplinary curriculum is distinct in the way it integrates the academic, artistic and the practical in each lesson.  more

Nipun Majumdar and his team’s solar desalination prototype.

Nipun Majumdar, a senior mechanical engineering major at TCNJ, has won TerraCycle’s second annual Ernel Simpson Innovation Award for environmental innovation, complete with a $500 stipend to support continued work on this project. Nipun and his teammates, Sophia Vazquez and Vanni Roa, have developed a prototype to support sustainable desalination using solar power. As Nipun explains, “We are in the midst of a climate emergency, and among many other problems freshwater scarcity is looming in many countries around the world.” The desalination process, which converts seawater to drinking water, can be “environmentally disruptive,” due to its byproducts and  use of non-renewable energy sources, without designs like the one Nipun and his team have created. more

Gill St. Bernard’s School in Gladstone is currently accepting applications for the 2021-2022 school year. A private, coeducational day school for students ages 3 through grade 12, GSB provides a rigorous, meaningful, and eye-opening curriculum to all. The bucolic campus is the perfect setting for outdoors and environmental learning opportunities. more

Create cool art this summer at the Arts Council of Princeton, June 21 through September 3. The ACP is offering 11 weeks of camp for ages 5-16, led by talented teaching artists. Students can try their hand at painting, mixed media, fiber arts, clay, and more. Teens and tweens have the opportunity to dive more deeply into various mediums and immerse themselves in weeks of creativity and development. Information on available scholarships is available by emailing education@artscouncilofprinceton.orgmore

Noah Webster

It was on this day in 1828 that Noah Webster’s American Dictionary of the English Language was published. Webster put together the dictionary because he wanted Americans to have a national identity that wasn’t based on the language and ideas of England. And the problem wasn’t just that Americans were looking to England for their language; it was that they could barely communicate with each other because regional dialects were so vastly different. more

1920: The Year That Made the Decade Roar

One hundred years later, there is a continued fascination with “The Roaring Twenties,” the only decade in American history with a widely applied nickname. How did a surge of innovation and cultural milestones emerge out of the ashes of WWI? Eric Burns, author of 1920: The Year That Made the Decade Roar, will look back at that critical (and often misunderstood) time, highlighting events that set the tone for the century that followed.  more