Friday, September 30, 2011

Remembering Roger Kennedy

1926 – 2011

Our friend and colleague, Roger G. Kennedy, died earlier today at the age of 85. Roger is best known for his work as director of the National Park Service, serving under President Clinton from 1993 to 1997. But we knew him before that, while he was director of the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History. Jon was Roger's publisher at Houghton MIfflin and we worked as editors on Roger's books Rediscovering America, which accompanied his television series, Roger Kennedy's Rediscovering America, and Burr, Hamilton, and Jefferson, about the character of the founding fathers.

Roger was an amazing person to work with. During his career he was an editor, historian, journalist, banker, attorney, advocate and public servant who wrote books on a range of subjects, including American history, architectural history, prehistoric North America, public affairs, churches, missions, and hidden cities. Nothing seemed to escape his interest and he was one of the best storytellers we have ever known. Jon last saw Roger early one morning on the streets of downtown Boston, where Roger explained to him the history of School Street. They went their separate ways, but Jon knows his day was enriched by that chance encounter—just as both our lives were enriched by knowing and working with Roger.

— Karen Stray Nolting and Jonathan P. Latimer

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

L'Shanah Tovah Tikatevu

Wishing our Princeton Landing neighbors
and all of our readers celebrating Rosh Hashanah
good health, happiness, peace, prosperity
and a sweet year ahead

Monday, September 26, 2011

Broadway's West Side Story 54 Years Old

On September 26, 1957, the original Broadway production of West Side Story opened at the Winter Garden Theatre. West Side Story had a book by Arthur Laurents, music by Leonard Bernstein and lyrics by Stephen Sondheim, marking his Broadway debut. It was conceived, directed and choreographed by Jerome Robbins and produced by Robert E. Griffith and Harold Prince. The musical is about star-crossed lovers from rival gangs, the Sharks and the Jets, on New York City's Upper West Side and is an adaptation of William Shakespeare's play Romeo and Juliet. The original Broadway show starred Carol Lawrence as Maria, Larry Kert as Tony, Chita Rivera as Anita, Art Smith as Doc, Mickey Calin as Riff and Ken LeRoy as Bernardo.

Here's a clip of Carol Lawrence and Larry Kert performing the song "Tonight" on The Ed Sullivan Show on November 2, 1958.

The video below captures a touching December 2007 rehearsal for a Broadway Cares/Equity Fights Aids' fund-raising event. For their opening number, a tribute to 50 years of West Side Story, BC/EFA brought together 22 of the original cast members, including Carol Lawrence, Chita Rivera, Mickey Calin, Ken LeRoy and the original Jets.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Parcel 6 Evening Sky — 6:57 pm

Friday, September 23, 2011

Fall Is Here

Photos taken at Terhune Orchards

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

National Public Lands Day at Mapleton Preserve

Photo by Charlie Dieterich

This Saturday, September 24, from 2 to 4 pm, Friends of Princeton Nursery Lands will hold its 3rd annual National Public Lands Day event at the Mapleton Preserve. The public is invited to play a part and contribute to the restoration of this significant historical site in Central New Jersey.

FPNL President Karen Linder says, "Last year twenty-two volunteers helped us plant trees, mulch, water, clear vines and brush, weed the butterfly garden, and collect litter." Spend an hour or two and help with volunteer efforts, then take a self-guided walk in the preserve, or bring a picnic and enjoy it at this beautiful site. Refreshments (water, apples and cookies) will be provided.

The entrance to the Mapleton Preserve is at 145 Mapleton Road in Kingston. (If approaching the preserve from Princeton Landing, the entrance is on the right, marked by a sign for the D&R Canal State Park Headquarters.) For more information, visit the FPNL website or call 609-683-0483.

Monday, September 19, 2011

PSO Festival of Music and Art

Princeton Symphony Orchestra is teaming up with the Princeton University Art Museum to present the first-ever Festival of Music and Art. The festival, titled American Adventures, will be held on Saturday, October 1, from noon to 5 pm on the Princeton University Campus. It is part of PSO Bravo! education programs and is perfect for children ages 4 through 12. The whole family can experience two of Princeton's cultural treasures—the Princeton Symphony Orchestra and the Princeton University Art Museum.

The festival will showcase the PSO's first-ever family concert at Richardson Auditorium from 2:30 to 3:30 pm. PSO Music Director Rossen Milanov will introduce live orchestral music that is both kid-friendly and enjoyable for adults through American-themed works of Copland, Dvořák, Sousa and others.

Throughout the afternoon, across the campus at the Princeton University Art Museum, kids can explore the American art collections in a scavenger hunt and create their own art. The family art activites will take place both before and after the concert, from noon to 2 pm and from 4 to 5 pm. Refreshments will be served.

Concert tickets are $10 each. Admission to the art museum is free. For concert tickets, call the PSO at 609-497-0020 or download an order form here. Tickets may also be purchased online at and at the Richardson Auditoriam box office the day of the concert.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Apple Day Festival at Terhune Orchards

This weekend, September 17 and 18, Terhune Orchards will host the 35th annual Apple Day festival from 10 am to 5 pm. The fall harvest celebration will include wagon and pony rides, pumpkin and apple picking, pumpkin painting, scarecrow making and a cornstalk maze. On Saturday there will a book signing by Herman Parish, the children's book author of the Amelia Bedelia stories. Throughout the weekend there will be music performed by the Daisy Jug Band.

Food will be available at Pam's cafe, including an "Everything Apple" buffet of fresh apple pies, apple cider donuts, apple muffins and apple salad, as well as hot dogs, soup, chili, chicken and fresh pork sandwiches from the outdoor pig roast.

Terhune Orchards is located at 330 Cold Soil Road in Princeton. Free parking is available at the farm. Apple Day is held rain or shine. Admission is $5 per person. Children under 3 are admitted for free.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Sad News From Terhune Orchards

We received some sad news from Terhune Orchards this afternoon. After a long and joyful life on the farm, the Mount family lost their beloved yellow lab Basil this past week. Basil was loved by so many customers . . . she will be dearly missed.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Alabanza: In Praise of Local 100

for the 43 members of Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees Local 100, working at the Windows on the World restaurant, who lost their lives in the attack on the World Trade Center

Saturday, September 10, 2011

40 Souls of Flight 93 Honored

Today the 40 passengers and crew on United Airlines Flight 93 who fought back against their hijackers on September 11, 2001, were honored for their heroism at a ceremony in Shanksville, PA. The ceremony dedicated the first phase of a National Memorial at our nation's newest national park in Stoneycreek Township. The ceremony had special meaning for us because a friend lost her mother and aunt. Both were aboard Flight 93.

As lovers of poetry we were moved by former U.S. poet laureate Robert Pinsky, who was called to read a selection of poetry and the names of the 40 men and women on the flight, accompanied by the tolling of bells. The first poem Mr. Pinsky spoke of is an epigram by British poet Walter Savage Landor:

On love, on grief, on every human thing,
Time sprinkles Lethe's water with his wing.

The other two poems Mr. Pinsky read are "Souvenir of the Ancient World" by the Brazilian poet Carlos Drummond de Andrade, found here, and "Incantation" by the Polish poet Czeslaw Milosz, found here.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Nature Guide: Signs of Fall

Since Hurricane Irene passed through, it suddenly feels like autumn. The leaves of oaks and maples haven't yet begun to change color, but there are other signs that fall is coming. Our Nature Guide Jon Latimer points out a few of them.

"After competing for mates and raising a family in spring and summer, robins and blackbirds are beginning to gather into flocks. Some of these flocks will migrate south, but others will spend winter in the deep woods. Smaller birds such as chickadees, titmice, nuthatches, and Downy and Hairy Woodpeckers are also gathering into mixed feeding groups that will forage together throughout winter.

"It won't be long before we begin to see Slate-colored Juncos. They travel in flocks of up to 30 individuals. If you watch a flock for a while, you will notice they have a definite social hierarchy, or pecking order. Adult males occupy the top rung of the social ladder, followed by young males, adult females and, lastly, young females. When they arrive at a feeder, dominant individuals eat first; lower-ranking juncos must wait their turn.

"There are also subtler signs that fall is on the way. For example, you may find a large number of spider webs around your home. This is because many spiders mate in fall, and female spiders spin webs to attract a male. Also, you may notice an abundance of acorns dropping off mature oak trees. Acorns are one of the most important food sources for wildlife. In fact, our squirrels are acting even crazier than usual as they rush to collect and store acorns for winter.

"Finally, one of the surest signs of fall is the appearance of the Woolly Bear Caterpillar. These fuzzy black and brown caterpillars wander around searching for a place to rest through winter, such as beneath loose tree bark or inside a log. Some people believe that the size of the brown middle section on this caterpillar predicts how severe the coming winter will be. The narrower the brown section, the harsher the weather. However, Woolly Bears with different sized sections commonly appear in the same year, so this folktale seems unlikely to be true."
Woolly Bear Caterpillar photo by IronChris

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Hurricane Irene Postscript

You may remember that on August 29, shortly after Hurricane Irene, Princeton Landing residents received an email notice from the management office passing along a request from Plainsboro Township to limit water use. Customers were "urged not to use any appliances which drain water into system." The email went on to say that "United Water Princeton Meadows is experiencing severe flooding at their Waste Treatment plant due to power outages caused by Hurricane Irene." On September 1, the management office sent a second message advising "that all water use restrictions have been lifted. Water use can return to normal."

A senior township official and a representative of United Water have now confirmed that Princeton Landing is not served by the United Water Princeton Meadows treatment plant. Residents in our community should not have been sent the August 29 request to restrict water use. The follow-up email on September 1 was also erroneous since the restrictions it referred to never applied to Princeton Landing.