Image Courtesy of David Scott Kessler

By Doug Wallack 

On Saturday, October 21, at the newly renovated Hopewell Theater, filmmaker David Scott Kessler will be screening his experimental documentary The Pine Barrens with a score performed live by The Ruins of Friendship Orchestra. The film, not unlike John McPhee’s 1968 book of the same name, explores New Jersey’s Pinelands, delving deep into the culture, ecology, and lore of the region, which — despite occupying twenty percent of the state’s land area — is so often overlooked, even by Garden State residents. more

OLD MILL, NEW LOOK: A view of the interior of Isles’ Mill One facility, a historic mill in the final stages of renovation, that will serve as the home of the organization’s Social Profit Center. (Photo courtesy of Isles, Inc.)

By Doug Wallack

On Saturday, October 21, Trenton-based nonprofit Isles will hold its first ever Fall Fest fundraiser in the new Social Profit Center at Mill One in Hamilton. The event will feature food and drink from local restaurants and vendors, along with performances and works from area musicians and artists. The Fall Fest is meant to showcase the greater Trenton community and to celebrate the renovation of Mill One — the historic mill building on the Hamilton-Trenton border that Isles purchased in 2006.  more

REEL LIFE: After the film, John Stier, one of Nash’s sons, and Dr. Joseph Kohn spoke about their memories of the real John Nash. “You have ten years of fantastic work, and it sort of looks like in the movie that he spent most of his time cutting out newspapers,” said Kohn. “He did really remarkable work.”

By William Uhl

On October 4, Princeton Garden Theatre partnered with the Historical Society of Princeton to hold a screening of A Beautiful Mind, a 2001 film about Nobel Prize winner and Princeton Professor John Nash’s mathematical achievements and struggles with schizophrenia. more

OBAMA AND TRUMP: New York Times White House Correspondent Peter Baker, author of the recent book “Obama: The Call of History,” spoke to a full house Monday night at Princeton University’s Arthur Lewis Auditorium, Robertson Hall, on the subject of President Obama’s legacy in the current Trump era. 

By Donald Gilpin

Peter Baker is still trying to figure out who is Barack Obama, and what exactly will be the substance of his legacy?

Chief White House correspondent for the NYTimes since 2008, Baker told a full-house gathering of about 200 at Princeton University’s Arthur Lewis Auditorium, Robertson Hall on Monday that he wrote his new book, Obama: the Call of History (June 2017), to try and tackle those questions.  more

Photo Credit: Trek Bikes

Plan your next biking adventure!

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NEW MUSIC: Sandbox Percussion (pictured) will be among the twelve acts performing at this Sunday’s Unruly Sounds festival. Now in its third year, the event features composers and performances by local artists and Princeton University affiliates.

By Doug Wallack

On Sunday, October 1, Hinds Plaza, adjacent to the Princeton Public Library, will play host to the third annual Unruly Sounds festival — a showcase of composers and new music from local artists and from the Princeton University Department of Music. more

PCDI teacher Melissa Edwards and Ginny.

A spectrum of challenges and hopeful possibilities

By Donald Gilpin

Autism now affects one in 68 children and one in 42 boys in the United States. New Jersey, with one in 48 children and one in 28 boys, has the highest rate of autism in the country. More children will be diagnosed with autism this year than with AIDS, diabetes, and cancer combined, and the cost of supporting an individual with autism during his or her lifespan can be upwards of $2.4 million.

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Mercer County Italian American Festival

By Laurie Pellichero 

The leaves will soon be falling, the air is crisp…it’s time for fall festivals!

Mark your calendar for these upcoming events:

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Princeton Public Library presents the 2017 Princeton Children’s Book Festival at Hinds Plaza on Saturday, September 23 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., rain or shine.

This well attended event continues to grow yearly and promises something for everyone. Here, you may meet your favorite author or illustrator, listen to them discuss their work, have a book autographed, or just have the opportunity to talk to them about their inspirations. Approximately 85 children’s book authors and illustrators will be in attendance. For a complete list of participating authors, visit http://bit.ly/2xeGu9lmore

Actor Michael Shannon will make an appearance at McCarter Theatre’s screening of the film 99 Homes, which will be held at McCarter Theatre on Saturday, September 23 at 4 p.m. There will also be a Q&A with McCarter’s Bill Lockwood and Princeton Garden Theatre’s Chris Collier. General admission is $20 ($15 for McCarter subscribers or Garden Theatre members). more

Friday, September 15

 10 a.m.: Athleta Shopping Event at MarketFair Mall in Princeton. Mention the Junior League of Greater Princeton at checkout and receive 10% back on all purchases.

7 p.m.: Public Vigil for Princeton University Student Detained by Iran at East Pyne Courtyard at Princeton University. Speakers will include family, friends, fellow students and Princeton University professors.

7 to 9 p.m.: Code for Princeton Open House and Social at the Princeton Public Library’s Community Room. Free to attend. Refreshments will be served. 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

A Place to Create and Collaborate

By Anne Levin 

Photographs courtesy of Princeton University’s Lewis Center for the Art

Staging one of her dances for the Lyon Opera Ballet in France a few decades ago, choreographer Susan Marshall was thrilled to find herself in a newly remodeled, state-of-the-art theater with spacious rehearsal studios and plenty of room to test out her ideas. It was like a dream come true, “a sort of fantasy that was actually happening,” Marshall recalls.

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“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 Wendy Plump

No one is asking children to give up their sports. But it’s getting a little crazy out there.

In one generation, sports have gone from child’s play to a proving ground for elite athletes—many of whom haven’t even graduated eighth grade—who commit to strenuous schedules, trainers, travel teams, coaches, aggressive tactics, and year-round seasons that give a young body no quarter for rest and growth. Coaches book flights to cities far beyond their hometowns. Parents shell out thousands of dollars for participation fees. And college recruiters wait eagerly in the background until it’s time to dangle offers that are impossible to resist. 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

Photo Credit: Asbury Park Distilling Co.

Craft Distilleries are Booming in New Jersey 

By Laurie Pellichero

From Jersey City to Cape May, craft distilleries have been quickly popping up and producing local spirits throughout the state. While craft beers and breweries have grown quite ubiquitous in New Jersey, it’s been in just the past few years that these small batch distilleries, which now number 16 and counting, have been able to produce and promote their wares.

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Building Community through the Arts: Student-artist Victoria Wayland of Princeton, with the poster she designed for the Arts Council of Princeton’s 50th anniversary. (Photo courtesy of the Arts Council of Princeton)

By Doug Wallack 

On Saturday, September 16, the Arts Council of Princeton (ACP) will host a community-wide 50th birthday party, featuring food from local vendors, live music, games, a community birthday cake, and more. The event is intended to be a celebration of the organization’s mission: Building Community Through the Arts. more