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May   9

Memorial Service Tonight For Lisa Strobert

A memorial service honoring Mt. Hebron teacher Lisa Strobert will take place  tonight. From the Montclair Times:

On Tuesday, May 9, 2006 at 7:00 p.m., a memorial service will take place at Mt.Hebron Middle School to honor the life of Lisa Strobert. The memorial will give members of the school and township community the opportunity to share thoughts and memories of Lisa. At the memorial, information about the "Love and Grace Scholarship Fund" will be provided. The fund is in memory of both Lisa Strobert and Gaetane Trevant-Collins, a Mt. Hebron teacher who passed away in March. For information, please contact Mt. Hebron teacher, Margaret Saraco at msaraco@montclair.k12.nj.us.

May 9, 2006 in Goodbyes | Permalink | Comments (0)

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March  13

Bloomfield Educator Dead

The Bloomfield schools community is mourning the sudden death Friday night of high school administrator Richard Frissell, who died of a heart attack. A short death notice appears in the Star Ledger. Funeral arrangements are being handled by Levandoski Funeral Home.

March 13, 2006 in Goodbyes | Permalink | Comments (2)

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March  12

Netflix Killed the Video Store

Everyone's been writing in to tell us that West Coast Video, the video store in Watchung Plaza, is going out of business. According to the latest tip-mail, people were waiting in line for up to an hour yesterday to buy out some of the store's stock of 10,000 videos, DVD's and games being offered in a liquidation sale.

West Coast is just the latest in a series of fallen video stores, including Palmer and Montclair Home Video in Montclair and Curry in Bloomfield.

March 12, 2006 in Goodbyes | Permalink | Comments (17)

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February  24

Sudden Death of Mount Hebron Teacher

We were all shocked and deeply saddened yesterday to hear of the unexpected death of Lisa Strobert, a Language Arts teacher at Mount Hebron School since 1994.  Confirmation of the devastating news came in a letter from Mark A. Jennings, principal at Mount Hebron, who also said:  "During her tenure, she distinguished herself as an excellent teacher who cared about her students. As additional information is learned, we will inform you."  Baristanet extends our deepest sympathy to Ms. Strobert's family.

February 24, 2006 in Goodbyes | Permalink | Comments (5)

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February  16

There's Something About Mary

Img_7622Flannery's Corner art supply store, at Watchung Plaza,  sadly closed its venerable doors yesterday. Artist/owner Mary Flannery decided to retire after 31 years of owning a shop that has been a fixture in the community, and where she supplied artistic guidance and materials for two generations. “My twenty-something  customers, who have been coming since they were little, are coming into the store and crying.  My younger clients, whom I have helped with their art projects, are upset at me,” she told Baristanet. “ I am just going through the motions, it’s like a dream,” she told customers yesterday who came in to say goodbye.

Art_3Mary claims to be the youngest person to ever open a business in Montclair. She was 21 when she opened her shop in 1975 with only $5,000.  She remembered back then, the shops were a lot different. “There was a butcher, a bakery, and the S&H Green Stamp Redemption Store across the street.”  A single mom, she is proud of her accomplishments, like raising her kids Dante and Paulina.  And the massive doll house she built, familiar to so many kids and which occupied a center spot in her store, was raffled off and won by one lucky 9-year-old girl.  “I wanted it to stay in Montclair.”

Mary, born and raised in Montclair, and the fourth of twelve kids, leaves today for St. Petersburg, Florida, and is happy about starting a new chapter of her life, with plans to marry – her girlfriend - after 20 years on her own. About closing her art supply store, she told Barista, “I had a buyer at one point to take over my store, but at the last minute, the person got cold feet. All I know now is that the new store will be home décor."  Mary will be back in town on February 25 to clean out the store – maybe your last chance to bid a fond farewell.  Bon Voyage, Mary, from Baristaville.

February 16, 2006 in Goodbyes | Permalink | Comments (14)

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February   7

Kay Kato, Suburban Cartoonist, Dead


Kay Kato, a Glen Ridge resident whose drawings told the story of suburban life in Essex County, died this weekend at Mountainside Hospital. A colorful local character, who refused to pay a dime in library fines, Kato drew for the Star Ledger for 31 years, from 1964 to 1995.

Kato (shown, right, in 1972) kept her age a well-guarded secret, but acquaintances think she was in her 90's. She lived on Chapman Place.

Her 1999 book "Park Art" featured sweetly comical drawings of familiar scenes: picnickers at the symphony at Brookdale Park, kids fishing for goldfish at a Watsessing School carnival, lawn bowlers in Watsessing Park, visitors at the Turtle Back Zoo. She donated all the proceeds and royalties from "Park Art" to the county park system. There are 48 copies of "Park Art" available for borrowing through the BCCLS library consortium.


February 7, 2006 in Goodbyes | Permalink | Comments (9)

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January  18

Boutique Owner Dead

Judy_felber_2 Judith Felber, owner of Barbara Eclectic clothing boutique in Upper Montclair through 2005, died Monday at her home at the age ot 68.

A mass for her will take place at 10 am Friday in St. Cassian Church, Upper Montclair.

(Photo of the boutique's store-window memorial courtesy Roberta Baldwin.)

January 18, 2006 in Goodbyes | Permalink | Comments (2)

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December  15

Nice Gesture for Late Classmate

Many people in Baristaville, and particularly 1995 graduates of Glen Ridge Ridge High School, were saddened to hear about the untimely death last month of Dara Alison Caggiano of Montclair. Caggiano, 28, died of a complication from severe asthma.   Last night, the Adam Niewood Trio played in his former classmate's memory at Trumpets, raising money for asthma research, PAWS Animal Shelter and St. Jude's Children's Hospital.

December 15, 2005 in Goodbyes | Permalink | Comments (5)

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November  17

Who's Going to Write the Bloomfield Board of Ed Minutes Now?

Yes, in Baristaville, people and come and go all the time. Earlier this year, the Glen Ridge dynamo Jane He left town, looking for lower property taxes. Now, it's Alison Meyer, formerly of Bloomfield, and in many ways the heart-and-soul of the parents-with-young-kids set. Alison took it on herself to attend meetings and debates and take copious notes, which she posted online, either on her own site or on NJ.com's message board. Luckily, she's still blogging here, and she's discovered good sushi and Chinese food outside Baristaville (in Tom's River, we think.) Alison, you'll surely be missed.

November 17, 2005 in Goodbyes | Permalink | Comments (9)

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November   3

Have You Driven a Ford ... Lately?

Ford_dealership OK, let's see a show of hands. How many of you drive an Explorer? An Expedition? A Taurus?

Well, maybe that's why Montclair Bloomfield Ford, the dealership on Bloomfield Ave. near the Montclair/Glen Ridge border, is going out of business.

The 50-year-old dealership closes its doors on November 15, amid rumors that developers are eyeing the property, which is across the street from Bubble Bath car wash.

Sales by Detroit automakers have plummeted lately as the price of gas has surged. In October, sales of Ford's Explorer dropped 59 percent, and Expedition sales fell 51 percent.

Customers of Montclair Bloomfield Ford will soon receive a letter telling them of the dealership's impending demise. An employee told us there are eight Ford dealerships within five miles, however, for service customers to choose from.

November 3, 2005 in Goodbyes | Permalink | Comments (28)

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