Audience members (opposite) explore the 2018 Power in the Pines Open House and Air Show May 6, 2018 at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J. U.S. Air Force photo by Brad Camara.

The U.S. Air Force Reserve Turns 70

By Donald H. Sanborn III

History of the Joint Base

“The roots of the Joint Base go back to World War I, when Camp Dix was established,” says aviation historian Dr. Richard Porcelli, author of Floyd Bennett Field and Naval Air Station Atlantic City. “Starting in 1917, it was the major mobilization point for forces headed for the European war. After the war, Camp Dix became a training base, and in the 1920s a primitive airfield was created on the site.

“In the 1930s, using federal funds, airport infrastructure was added including concrete runways. The airport was named Rudd Field in honor of Guy K. Rudd, a fallen aviator from Newark. In 1939 it became Fort Dix Army Air Field. In 1940 it became the home base of the 119th Observation Squadron, antecedents of today’s New Jersey Air National Guard’s 119th Fighter Squadron.” more

Photos Courtesy of The Peddie School

Twenty-five years since Walter H. Annenberg bestowed his historic gift on Peddie School in Hightstown, N.J., the school is an example of how philanthropy can transform a school — and how a school can transform thousands of lives as a result.

On Father’s Day, 1993, Annenberg gave $100 million to Peddie — along with $265 million to the University of Pennsylvania, the University of Southern California and Harvard University — as an endowed fund designed to expand financial aid, institute innovative programs, and recruit exceptional faculty. It was the largest cash gift ever given to an independent school, and it brought instant fame to Peddie.  more

Activities Close to Home

By Laurie Pellichero

While some people may have vacations planned for the mountains, shore, big cities, islands, and more this summer, there are plenty of fun, entertaining, and family-friendly places to visit right around the area. Here are a few to check out:

NEWARK MUSEUM

Founded in 1909, the Newark Museum is New Jersey’s largest museum. It holds fine collections of American art, decorative arts, contemporary art, and works from Asia, Africa, the Americas, and the ancient world. Its varied collections of American art include works by Hiram Powers, Thomas Cole, John Singer Sargent, Albert Bierstadt, Frederick Church, Childe Hassam, Mary Cassatt, Edward Hopper, Georgia O’Keeffe, Joseph Stella, Tony Smith, and Frank Stella. more

Blair Academy marked its 170th commencement on May 24 as the members of class of 2018 received their diplomas before an enthusiastic and appreciative audience of Trustees, faculty, students and family members. Assembled on the sun-dappled lawn in front of Sharpe House, seniors celebrated their accomplishments and promising futures as they enjoyed their final class gathering before joining Blair’s alumni ranks. more

Photo Source: @montclairstateu

Send your recent graduate on the right path with these items guaranteed for success! 

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Brian Sullivan, NYBG’s vice president for landscape and glasshouses, teaches a horticulture class in the native plant garden. (Photo courtesy of New York Botanical Garden)

Classes online and on-site offer an array of horticultural help

By Wendy Greenberg

The air is warmer and daylight lingers longer. Lime green leaves are painting roadside landscapes.  So often spring awakens an urge to seek greener thumbs, or greener yards.  After all, it is the Garden State.

If you are so inspired, you are in luck. A bounty of classes and programs beckons to help would-be plant whisperers find their voices. Some of the area’s most respected and scenic public gardens are at your service with on-site and online courses, ranging from landscape design to wellness and therapy, to native flora, and some unusual offerings. 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

344 Nassau Street, known in the 19th Century as the “Robert Horner House”

TRACING THE UNDERGROUND RAILROAD IN NEW JERSEY

By Doug Wallack // Photographs Courtesy of The Historical Society of Princeton

The Underground Railroad has long captivated the American popular imagination; as a nation in turmoil struggled to reckon with its moral realities, this network of safe houses and volunteers conveying fugitive slaves to free states and Canada was a beacon of grassroots resistance, an instance of interracial cooperation, and the setting of countless tales of individual and collective courage. more

By Taylor Smith 

JCC University at Kaplen JCC on the Palisades in Tenafly, NJ offers the opportunity to rekindle previous passions, ignite new interests, meet new people and stay involved in the developments that shape today’s world. Top professors and experts present on topics including science, literature, film, economics, psychology, architecture and politics. more

By Taylor Smith

A selection team from Amazon met with New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy and Newark Mayor Ras Baraka on Tuesday to discuss the prospects of Newark as the HQ2 Amazon headquarters, making New Jersey, the new hub of Amazon commerce.

Other notable figures in attendance included former Newark Mayor and current U.S Senator Cory Booker and D-NJ and businessman Ray Chambers. more

By Taylor Smith 

LSC Science Camp is back for another amazing summer in Jersey City, NJ! This year, there are even more adventures to be had for elementary and middle school students at all grade levels.

From secret agent training, to zombie survival, to 3D printing lessons, to adventures in LSC’s brand new Jennifer Chalsty Planetarium and LSC Giant Dome Theater, this year’s Science Camp definitely can’t be missed!

Need some convincing? Here are 12 coolest things LSC Science Campers get to do this summer: 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

By Laurie Pellichero

Set on 54 acres in Far Hills, N.J., about an hour west of New York City, Far Hills Country Day School is a private, co-educational day school for students in pre-kindergarten through eighth grade.

The school was founded in 1929 on the principles of the Progressive Education Movement, and believes in a balanced approach to learning that includes solid academics paired with valuable life skills and character development. The school’s “whole child” philosophy includes an emphasis on classroom personalization and differentiation.  more

By Wendy Greenberg 

Princeton University freshman Jack Aiello credits a special New Jersey camp for giving him the confidence to climb the Himalayas with the challenges associated with type 1 diabetes.

Despite the unpredictable effect elevation can have on metabolism, his blood sugar numbers stayed under control. In a blog on the camp website he wrote, “Eight summers of living with peers and counselors who have diabetes have given me a tremendous amount of knowledge and confidence in managing diabetes…Camp gave me counselors who spent weeks camping in the wilderness, friends who cycled thousands of miles competitively, and dozens of role models and friends who always kept their diabetes under control—not the other way around.”  more

The Choirs of The Performing Arts School at bergenPAC

By Donald H. Sanborn III // Photography by Jeremy Lebled 

It was really amazing to meet Kristin Chenoweth, and perform with her,” says Jacqueline Lutz of Demarest. Lutz, 9, has been a member of the Chamber Chorus of The Performing Arts School at bergenPAC for two years, in addition to singing in the choir at Luther Lee Emerson School. more

By William Uhl // Photographs Courtesy of Thomas Edison National Historic Park

Walking through the halls of Thomas Edison’s laboratory in Thomas Edison National Historical Park in West Orange, it’s easy to think history’s been frozen in time. From the chemical storage to his personal lounge, everything in the laboratory has been meticulously preserved and restored to look how Edison himself would have seen it. The material storage room still has everything ranging from iron bars to elephant hide, and the production floor has era-appropriate hats and jackets hanging on workers’ hooks. more

By Ilene Dube

“A sap run is the sweet goodbye of winter. It is the fruit of the equal marriage of the sun and frost.” — John Burroughs

Maine and Vermont may lure visitors with excursions to sugar shacks, and their tourist centers delight children of all ages with boxes of maple leaf-shaped sugary treats, but the joys of maple sugaring can be had without leaving the Garden State.  more

By Taylor Smith

The boarding school experience is unique to each individual student and school. For some, the setting or architecture may be a defining feature — encouraging students, faculty, and alumni to dream big. For other institutions, traditions hold a special place in the heart of each graduate — a perpetuation of history, pride, and scholarly achievements. While some of the schools described here believe in the importance of a single-sex high school education, all of them hope to instill in their students a passion for collaboration. Perhaps one of these high schools is well-suited to your family. more

A $12 million investment will expand non-invasive cardiac care at JFK Medical Center

Hackensack Meridian Health, New Jersey’s most comprehensive and truly integrated health care network, is proud to announce that JFK Health in Edison, a leading hospital system that is nationally recognized for its pediatric and adult neuroscience and rehabilitation programs, is joining the network which will expand to 16 hospitals. With now more than 160 patient care locations, Hackensack Meridian Health is the largest health network in the state. more

Student entrepreneurs to vie for $80,000 in prize money

Entrepreneur AJ Khubani ’84 took a bright idea – direct response marketing – and built it into TeleBrands, which is known for its “As Seen on TV” products and its flagship BulbHead brand. Now, with a generous $500,000 gift, the TeleBrands CEO and founder hopes to continue to help Montclair State student entrepreneurs fast-track their innovative ideas and solutions to real-world problems for the next five years. more

Stevens Undergraduate Students in Design Spine Course

Schaefer School of Engineering Revamps its “Design Spine” to Help Students Gain Interdisciplinary, Real-World Experience

Written by Stevens Institute of Technology’s Office of Communications

The broad and lasting skills that emerge when a student is at the center of the learning process is nothing short of incredible.

Whether working individually or teams, students in Stevens Institute of Technology’s Charles v. Schaefer, Jr. School of Engineering and Science progress through a sequence of interdisciplinary design courses. In those courses, students not only learn engineering principles and how to apply them; they also learn soft skills like creative thinking, problem solving, project management, communication and ethics that are increasingly important in the working world. more

Children and their parents experience Brandywine Christmas. Photo by Carlos Alejandro. 

By Ilene Dube

In all its starkness, winter was the favorite season of the painter Andrew Wyeth (1917–2009), one of the 20th century’s most popular American painters. Even today, exhibitions of his works draw large crowds to museums.

Wyeth described winter as a time when “you feel the bone structure in the landscape—the loneliness of it—the dead feeling…” Wyeth’s landscapes of that season are both placid in their silence and haunting in their feeling of desolation. He has the ability to capture the nuanced shades of white, even when working in watercolor. more

For Dr. Afzal-Khan’s documentary From The Melody Queen to the Muslim Madonna, she interviewed several Pakistani women, including vocalists, professors, and relatives of famous historic Pakistani singers.

By William Uhl 

A vocalist, professor, and activist, Dr. Fawzia Afzal-Khan has spent her life working to bridge gaps between people and erase misconceptions. Born in Pakistan and raised by two parents who fostered her thirst for knowledge, she has several published articles in both academic journals and newspapers, a well-reviewed memoir, and received the “Excellence in Public Life Award” by the American Muslim Alliance in 2008. Now a professor at Montclair State University, she has continued to unite the East and West through education, writing, and music. more

By Wendy Plump 

Photography Courtesy of Nomadic Expeditions

In a dramatic re-interpretation of the notion “If you build it, they will come,” New Jersey resident and contractor Jalsa Urubshurow built a base for his adventure expedition company in Mongolia. He chose the South Gobi Province on the edge of the Gobi Desert—where the Altai Mountains rim the horizon—and put up forty Ger, the traditional felt yurts of Mongolia’s indigenous nomadic tribes. He designed the main lodge in the style of an ancient temple. He quarried local stone and installed local staffers – herders, guides, cooks – because he wanted authenticity in a world greatly in need of it, and, if truth be told, because he demanded the most breathtaking gateway for those visiting his beloved Mongolia, the home of his Kalmyk ancestors. more

Lawrence Charles B. Samuel Stanhope Smith 1750–1819, Class of 1769, President 1795–1812.

By Doug Wallack

On Monday, November 6, the Princeton & Slavery Project—an initiative of Princeton University—launched its website as a means of publicizing its ongoing research into the University’s relationship with the institution of slavery. Visitors to the site can find over 80 articles that, for instance, tease out the links between the fortunes of the University’s early benefactors and slavery, or examine the slave holdings of University presidents, trustees, and other affiliates. Also included online are hundreds of primary documents, data visualizations and maps that track the proportional enrollment of southern students at Princeton, and video documentaries in which students and alumni reflect on their own families’ relationships to slavery.  more

FIFTY FINGERS: The 5 Browns, the acclaimed piano quintet of Julliard-trained siblings, comes to Drew University on November 18. (Photo by Giuseppe1925, CC BY-SA 3.0)

By Doug Wallack

On Saturday, November 18, The 5 Browns will take to the stage at the Dorothy Young Center for the Arts at Drew University. The piano quintet, composed of Julliard-trained siblings Ryan, Melody, Gregory, Deondra, and Desirae Brown, first came to prominence in 2002, and in the ensuing decade and a half they’ve enjoyed generous critical and popular acclaim. more

Amedeo Modigliani, Lunia Czechowska, 1919. Oil on canvas. Museu de Arte de São Paulo. Photograph by João Musa.

By Ellen Gilbert

“The exquisite-looking artist was often overshadowed by his Bohemian legend,” observed Jewish Museum Senior Curator Mason Klein at a recent press preview of the new Modigliani exhibit, “Modigliani Unmasked,” at the Jewish Museum in New York City through February 4, 2018. Images of Amedeo Modigliani’s movie star quality looks and accounts of his tempestuous and brief (1884-1920) life have indeed tended to overshadow his accomplishments, though sales of his later paintings in recent years do not seem troubled by these considerations: his Nu Couché fetched a whopping $170.4 million (with fees) at a Christie’s auction in 2015. more

The NJ Audubon Montclair Hawk Watch 

By Laurie Pellichero 

It’s an incredible sight to see each fall, flocks of birds making their way down south for the winter. One of the best places to witness the yearly pilgrimage of a variety of hawks and other birds of prey is the NJ Audubon Montclair Hawk Watch Lookout, a crushed stone-filled platform that sits on a basalt ledge high on a ridge known as First Watchung Mountain in Montclair, New Jersey. more

By Anne Levin

With a mother and two paternal aunts who died of breast cancer, the two sisters knew it was important to get tested to see if they carried the BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene. Should the test come back positive, their risk of developing breast and/or ovarian cancer would be higher than average. And preventive measures—most likely mastectomy and/or hysterectomy—could be in order. 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.

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