Community Bulletin Board: Criterion Sentinel (for April 21)


The Metuchen Arts Council is joining with the Metuchen Human Relations Commission to schedule virtual Community Conversations around the issues highlighted in 2021 Windows of Understanding Public Art Project.

The third in the series will take place at 7:30 p.m. April 21 on the topic of climate change. Artists Lauren Curtis, Maja Opacic and Mickey Waring were commissioned by the Metuchen Arts Council to create art that illuminates the mission of the Edison Greenways Group. Walter Stochel, vice president of the group, will participate in the discussion about their mission and their work to enhance the quality of life in our community.

View live on Facebook at

In addition to the Community Conversations, the Metuchen programming for the Windows of Understanding Project includes an exhibition in the Metuchen Public Library Gallery of art that was commissioned around the topics of food insecurity, youth engagement, public health, trauma and recovery, as well as climate change. The complete exhibition can be accessed virtually exhibit from the Metuchen Arts Council website at

For more information on Windows of Understanding, visit or on Instagram at @windowsofunderstanding, #weseethroughhate.


Woodbridge High School will present “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” at 7 p.m. April 22-24 and at 2 p.m. April 25 on the Mayor’s Stage at Woodbridge High, 1 Samuel Lupo Place, Woodbridge.

Suggested donation is $10.

Call 732-602-8600 for more information.



The Metuchen Piano Project is a unique canvas for artists.

Help roll out the downtown pianos in time for spring.

For more information and details, visit

Application deadline is April 23.



Chug Ivrit for intermediate to advanced Hebrew speakers will meet at 11 a.m. April 25, socially distanced, in Rachel Weintraub’s backyard, 120 Highland Ave., Edison.

Attendees will read a Hebrew article or story and chat in Hebrew.

To RSVP, contact Rachel at [email protected] or 732-819-9298.



The Middlesex County Regional COVID-19 Vaccine Mega-site, operated by RWJBarnabas Health, is seeking volunteers to assist in the efficiency of the registration and vaccination process and help visitors feel comfortable.


Volunteers of the mega-site, located at the New Jersey Convention & Expo Center, 97 Sunfield Ave., Edison, will greet patients and visitors; perform temperature screenings; direct patients through various steps of the vaccination process; provide education materials; and assist with maintaining the registration area and supplying vaccination stations.

Volunteers do not administer vaccines.

Those who apply to volunteer must be a minimum of 18 years old and will be subject to a background check and a drug screen, and will need to sign a confidentiality statement. 

College students requiring community service hours are also eligible to volunteer. RWJBarnabas Health will track hours and provide written verification for those who need it.

Volunteers must commit through June to at least two shifts per week from 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. or from 12:30 to 5:30 p.m.; or one full day from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. with an hour break for lunch. Shifts are available seven days a week.

Send your name, phone number, email address, desired start date and your availability to [email protected].






The Arts Institute of Middlesex County is presenting a multitude of arts and culture events throughout April, primarily centered around National Poetry Month.

Highlights include:


  • April 21 at 4 p.m. – Explore the real-life story of the Puerto Rican-American pediatrician and New Jersey-based poet William Carlos Williams as told through multimedia illustrations. Let the images and words inspire you to create your own poems and collages from a variety of your own found papers and other materials.
  • April 28 at 4 p.m. – Explore everyday family and community life in the Bahamas through paintings and poetry in a reading of “Under the Sunday Tree,” then create your own everyday scene or portrait in paint.

All programs will be held virtually.

Visit for full details on all the events.

To honor National Poetry Month, the Arts Institute will also present a series of videos and content on










The Metuchen Arts Council is joining with the Metuchen Human Relations Commission to schedule a virtual “Community Conversation” around the issues highlighted in 2021 Windows of Understanding Public Art Project. Those issues include food insecurity, youth engagement, trauma and recovery, public health and climate change.

All Community Conversations will start at 7:30 p.m. and can be accessed via Facebook live at 

The next event is scheduled for April 21. In observance of Earth Day, Edison Greenways Group and artists Laura Curtis and Mickey Waring will explore the issue of climate change.

In addition to the Community Conversations, the Metuchen programming for the Windows of Understanding Project will include an exhibition in the Metuchen Public Library Gallery of all the art discussed in the Community Discussion.

A virtual exhibit will also be mounted and available for viewing from the Metuchen Arts Council website at

For more information on Windows of Understanding, including a complete list of featured organizations, participating storefronts, and a full calendar of free events, visit or on Instagram at @windowsofunderstanding, #weseethroughhate.





The YMCA of MEWSA (Metuchen, Edison, Woodbridge & South Amboy) will hold a virtual wine tasting fundraising event at 7 p.m. April 23 via Zoom.
Participants will receive four bottles of wine, a list of suggested food pairings and a goody bag.
The cost is $125 per household, which includes four bottles of wine and a surprise gift.
Visit for more information and pricing.
All proceeds will go to the YMCA of MEWSA’s Annual Support Campaign.




Edison Township will hold a Tulip Walk from noon to 7 p.m. April 24 and 25.

There will be 10 blocks filled with 120 beds and 50 flower pots of tulips and hyacinths along Amboy Avenue, between Barton Street and Pleasant Avenue in the Clara Barton section of town.

There will also be food trucks, craft beer and wine, and live music.

For more information, visit the Edison Chamber of Commerce website at



The Metuchen YMCA will host a blood drive from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. April 25 at the Y, 65 High St., Metuchen.

To schedule an appointment, visit using sponsor code 15750. Then click “schedule” for the April 25 date at the bottom of the page.

For more information, email [email protected]


Together Edison, in cooperation with the Greater New Brunswick Area League of Women Voters, will host a virtual Democratic Mayoral Primary Forum on April 25 at 7 p.m.

Questions will be curated prior to the forum by the sponsors to avoid duplication and ensure clarity.

For information on how to view the forum live or rebroadcast, and any last minute changes, visit or


Middlesex County will hold a residential paper shred program for all Middlesex County residents from 9 a.m. to noon April 24, or until the truck is filled, whichever occurs first, at Babbage Park, Laurel Place, North Brunswick.

Limit of five file boxes or 100 pounds per car.

Paper must be in a manageable container. No plastic bags will be accepted.

No need to remove paper clips, staples or paperboard binder covers.

Do not bring newspapers, magazines, hardcover books, junk mail, photos, x-rays, CDs, shredded paper or garbage.

Residents must wear face coverings, keep their vehicle windows closed and remain inside their vehicles.

Materials should be in the truck, cargo area or truck bed, easily accessible for staff to retrieve.


Middlesex County’s Parks and Recreation Department will accept reservations for picnic groves at nine county parks via a new online reservation system, with the first reservations available on April 24.

 The parks included in this new reservation system include Alvin Williams Park in Woodbridge; Donaldson Park in Highland Park; Fords Park in Woodbridge; Johnson Park in Piscataway; Joseph Medwick Park in Carteret; Merrill Park in Woodbridge; Roosevelt Park in Edison; Thompson Park in Monroe; Warren Park in Woodbridge.

These picnic groves offer visitors a socially distanced way to host picnics and small gatherings in an outdoor setting. 

Fees vary for each location and are contingent on the Executive Order in place at the time of event.

To reserve a picnic grove online and view a list of accommodations provided at each grove such as electrical outlets, charcoal grills, shelter, etc., visit 

A list of rules and regulations for the use of picnic areas will be listed on that page.



The community is invited to join a “find your voice” conversation with Dr. Ibram X. Kendi, professor and “New York Times” bestselling author of “How To Be An Antiracist”; and moderator/host Amanda Ripley, investigative journalist and “New York Times” bestselling author, at 7 p.m. April 28 via Zoom in an event hosted by the First Presbyterian Church of Metuchen.

The discussion is made possible by a Greystone Fund Grant, Presbytery of Elizabeth, as well as sponsorships from many area houses of worship including, St. Luke’s Episcopal Church of Metuchen; New Hope Baptist Church of Metuchen; Church of the Nazarene of Edison; Neve Shaloam of Metuchen; Temple Emanu-El of Edison; New Dover Methodist Church of Edison; First Reformed Church of New Brunswick; Raritan Valley Baptist Church; Oak Tree Presbyterian Church of Edison; Reformed Church of Metuchen; Centenary Methodist Church of Metuchen; and First Presbyterian Church of Metuchen.

Register at, or the FPC website at

A Zoom link will be provided upon registration.



Clara Barton’s annual yard sale will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. April 24 throughout the Clara Barton section of Edison.

Be mindful of COVID safety guidelines.

All residents are welcome to participate. No permits needed.

To sign up, email [email protected]




The Edison Arts Society will showcase the contemporary and abstract paintings of Nitu Pilania in the Edison Arts Society Gallery on the third floor of the municipal building, 100 Municipal Blvd., Edison.

The exhibit is open through April 29 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. during the business week.

Pilania is a self-taught Indian artist based in New Jersey. Her oil and acrylic artwork are primarily centered around contemporary and abstract styles. Her paintings revolve around nature and animals with bold and vibrant colors. She also enjoys using graphite charcoal pencils as well.


Hiding in Plain Sight: Working Together to Prevent Youth Suicide will be presented by the New Jersey Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, the New Jersey Department of Health, New Jersey Poison Information and Education System, Monmouth University SRF Suicide Prevention Research and Training Project and the School of Nursing and Health Studies, New Jersey Office of the Chief State Medical Examiner, New Jersey Department of Children and Families, the New Jersey Traumatic Loss Coalition, and the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office.

The free virtual conference will be held from 8:30 a.m. to noon on April 29.

Register at 

For more information, contact Sharleen van Vlijmen at [email protected]



Saint Peter’s University Hospital in New Brunswick has launched the Substance Abuse and Addiction Loss Support Group for families who are coping with loss due to addiction.

The free and confidential support group meets virtually on the second Thursday of every month from 7-8:30 p.m.

Inspired by Saint Peter’s Opioid Task Force, the Substance Abuse and Addiction Loss Support Group is for families and close loved ones of people who have passed away from addiction.

The support group is open to everyone in New Jersey and serves as a safe space for families to discuss their grief.

To join the Substance Abuse and Addiction Loss Support Group, call Jeanne Delacruz, a social worker at Saint Peter’s who facilitates the support group, at 732-745-8522 or email [email protected]

Saint Peter’s also plans a “Successful Recovery from Addiction”
virtual presentation from 6:30-7:30 p.m. April 21 via Zoom, presented by Donald Rogers, Community Outreach director at The Recovery Village Cherry Hill at Cooper.

In this presentation, Rogers will share his story of active addiction, treatment episodes, and interactions with law enforcement. He will also explain the disease concept of addiction, family systems and how addiction can impact loved ones, and the experience of treatment leading to the recovery process.

To register for “Successful Recovery from Addiction,” visit



MCFOODS (Middlesex County Food Organization and Outreach Distribution Services) is holding a virtual walk to end hunger through April 30.

Choose when, where and how far to walk.

Go to to sign up. There is a $5 registration fee. Ask others to sponsor per mile or per journey.

Tag photos, videos or screenshots of a walking app with #FMCVirtualWalkForHunger and @feedingMC1. And, visit the Facebook event page at

In addition, several food drives to benefit the food insecure in Middlesex County are planned over the next few months:

  • 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. April 17 at the Park and Ride on Applegarth Road, Monroe
  • 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. May 15 at East Jersey Old Town Village, Johnson Park, 1050 River Road, Piscataway
  • East Brunswick High School’s second annual Battle of the Classes Food Drive: 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. May 2, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. May 8, and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. May 16 at Brunswick Square Mall, 755 Route 18, East Brunswick

In addition, Dine Below the Line will be held at 6 p.m. June 6 via YouTube. Tune in live to watch local chefs showcase recipes prepared on a budget with items typically found in a food pantry. Chefs will be judged on creativity, budget and nutrition. There will be a “People’s Choice” vote as well by those watching.

Furthermore donations can be dropped off at the MCFOODS facility at 28 Kennedy Blvd., East Brunswick, around the back of the building under the tent. Staff members are there weekdays from 6 a.m. to 1 p.m. to receive donations.

If an organization would like to conduct a food drive, arrangements can be made for staff to deliver containers and pick up donations.

Or, direct monetary donations can be made at or checks payable to Feeding Middlesex County can be mailed to P.O. Box 781, Edison 08818.





Woodbridge Township will hold an Earth Day & Arbor Day Celebration from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. May 1 at Town Hall, 1 Main St., Woodbridge.

There will be a toy exchange. Bring used toys to exchange for new ones.

Fitness classes include yoga from 11-11:30 a.m., a kids sport class from 11:30 a.m. to noon, and Zumba from noon to 12:30 p.m.

A tour of the Blue Acres ecological preserve will be offered.

Mother’s Day photos will be taken on the Trex Bench, which is made of recycled materials.

There will be vendors and giveaways.

Masks are required for all activities.

Parking will be available at the NJ Transit lot and the Berkeley College lot.



RU Ready to Farm, a new beginner farmer training program from the Rutgers New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station (NJAES) Cooperative Extension, will hold its first online information session on May 1 at 10 a.m.

This program is directed by Middlesex County Agricultural Agent Bill Hlubik and will provide a combination of online and in-person hands-on training to new and beginner farmers from around the state.

This information session will:

  • Highlight the need for a next generation of farmers.
  • Provide an overview of the RU Ready to Farm training program.
  • Explain how to sign-up for the program.
  • Outline the level of commitment expected from program participants.
  • Feature farmers sharing the story of their horse-powered diversified farm in coastal Maine.

Registration for the information session can be found at

For more information about RU Ready to Farm, visit, or email [email protected]. Follow on Facebook and Instagram @RUReadytoFarm.




The Metuchen Area Chamber of Commerce announced Cruise Night Season for 2021.

The scheduled dates are May 5, June 2, July 7, Aug. 4, Sept. 1 and Oct. 6 from 6-8:30 p.m.

Rain dates will be the following Wednesday.

There will be prizes for first, second and third place at each event.

Sponsorships are available.

For more information, call 732-548-2964 or email [email protected]


Saint Peter’s University Hospital, a member of Saint Peter’s Healthcare System, is hosting a free virtual lecture on Trauma, Adverse Childhood Experiences and Self Care Strategies, presented by Laurie Herrick, BS, and Heather Ward, MSW, LSW, CPS, Wellspring Center for Prevention, 6:30-7:30 p.m. May 5. Register at

Another lecture, the HPV Vaccine’s Role in Cancer Prevention for Your Adolescent, will be presented by Daniela Correa, MD, pediatrician, The Children’s Hospital at Saint Peter’s University Hospital, and Paulina Rojas, MD, pediatrician, Saint Peter’s University Hospital’s Family Health Center, from 6:30-7:30 p.m. June 2. Register at

For more information, contact Robert J. LaForgia, coordinator, Healthier Middlesex, at [email protected] or 732-745-8600, ext. 5831. Allow up to 48 hours for a response.


The Jewish Community Center of Middlesex County in Edison will hold a virtual canasta tournament on May 12.

Play three games on The opening ceremony via Zoom is at 10 a.m., followed by play from 10:30 a.m. to 1:15 p.m.

Winners will be announced on Zoom at 1:45 p.m. 

The cost is $18 per person to play, and $5 per raffle ticket.

Must register by May 6.

Call the JCC Front Desk at 732-494-3232 to register by phone.

For more details, contact Diane Mael at [email protected] 



A cleanup day will be held in the Clara Barton section of Edison starting at 8 a.m. May 8.

Meet in front of the Clara Barton First Aid Squad at 1079 Amboy Ave.

Volunteers are needed to collect trash and clean up the neighborhood.

Wear comfortable clothing that can get dirty.

Supplies will be provided.





The Terra Nova Garden Club of Edison is offering a $400 scholarship to an Edison resident and high school senior who is planning to attend college in the fall and has a significant interest in agriculture, horticulture or environmental sciences.

Applications along with criteria can be obtained at all Guidance Offices in all Edison high schools.

The deadline for submission is May 12.

Contact Gloria Dittman at 732-548-9234 for more information.







The Middlesex County Regional Chamber of Commerce will hold the 75th annual Bernie Cohn Golf Classic from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. May 13.

Tee time is 9 a.m. at the Banks Course, Forsgate Country Club, 375 Forsgate Dr., Monroe.

Sign up at or




Middlesex College is developing apprenticeship opportunities in Advanced Manufacturing through Career Advance USA, a U.S. Department of Labor-funded grant.

Apprenticeships, developed and implemented in collaboration with employers, are earn-and-learn programs that combine formal classroom learning with on-the-job training.

Those interested in the program should register for a virtual information session at 10 a.m. May 13 by visiting

The college is also looking for employers interested in developing workers.

For more information about the grant and how to participate, visit or contact Yarelis Figueroa at [email protected] or John Miller at [email protected].





Eligible adult students and graduates with the potential to succeed in college can apply for the 2021 NJALL Scholarships.


NJALL will award two scholarships on June 18 to two adults who earned a high school diploma by attending a New Jersey adult education program to prepare for a High School Equivalency Test or Adult High School and have been accepted to/or are attending college.


The Scholarship NOW provides up to $1,000 per semester for full-time enrollment, (pro-rated for part-time) to a maximum of $8,000 for higher education.


To qualify, an applicant must be a resident of New Jersey. Scholarship applications are open to anyone regardless of gender, race, color, religion, age, sexual orientation or disabling condition.


The 2021 application with eligibility information is available at

All applications must be submitted, including all required documents, postmarked no later than May 10.


United Way of Central Jersey is continuing to provide VITA services to prepare taxes this season for individuals and families making $65,000 or less.

All taxes will be prepared remotely via video conferencing and/or phone.

To schedule an appointment, visit

For VITA Lockbox locations, visit

To prepare your own taxes for free, visit www.myfreetaxes


The Anshe Emeth Community Development Corp (AECDC) Central Jersey Diaper Bank is collecting baby clothing sizes newborn-2T, diapers and books.
Donations can be picked up if within Middlesex County. Volunteers from the Rutgers School of Nursing will arrive between 10 a.m. and noon on the day indicated.
At this time, no shoes, equipment, toys, etc. can be collected.



The Edison Police Department is seeking applicants to serve as auxiliary police officers.

Auxiliary police officers are unpaid volunteer positions open to U.S. citizen, age 18 or older, with a high school diploma or a G.E.D, and a valid N.J. driver’s license.

Applicants must be in good physical condition and able to pass a criminal background check and interview.

The applicants should be Edison residents, or live in towns near Edison that do not have auxiliary police officers of their own.

The auxiliary police officers augment the Edison Police Department by assisting with traffic control functions, crowd control and security, road closures, extra patrols in parks and public properties, and may be dispatched to emergency or disaster situations.

All applicants, if selected, will be required to attend the Middlesex County Auxiliary Police Academy which will tentatively start in May or June and extend for six weeks. The training will occur on most Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings and a few Saturdays during that period of time.

Applicants for auxiliary police officer should contact Lt. Robert J. Dudash Jr. at 732-248-6442 or [email protected].

Applications can be downloaded from or

Completed applications must be mailed or dropped off to the Edison Police Department, Patrol Bureau, 100 Municipal Blvd., Edison 08817, Attention: Lt. Robert J. Dudash Jr.

Applications must be submitted by no later than 4 p.m. to be considered for the 2021 appointment process.




North Brunswick PBA Local 160 announced the return of its annual Cops & Rodders Car Show for Sept. 19. Rain date will be Sept. 26.

More details will be announced.

For more information, email [email protected]




The YMCA of MEWSA (Metuchen, Edison, Woodbridge and South Amboy) will host its annual Richard Hale Memorial Golf Classic on Oct. 7 at the Metuchen Golf and Country Club in Edison.

This fundraiser supports the Y’s Send a Kid to Camp Scholarship Fund, which provides scholarships to children from underserved families in the community.

In 2020, the Y provided more than $12,000 in camp scholarship funds which provided peace of mind for families facing economic challenges. With these scholarships, campers are less likely to experience summer learning loss and become inactive.

Camp provides access to STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, math) programming, swimming, sports, arts and crafts and more.

The fundraiser starts with lunch and a Bloody Mary bar, a shotgun start at 12:25 p.m., followed by an open bar and dinner, along with several events including a wine pull, raffles and a 50/50 raffle.

Sponsorship opportunities are available which are tax deductible and include recognition in all promotional materials, press releases and in the event program.

For more information, visit; or contact Catherine Haugh at 732-516-9200, ext. 2083 or [email protected].


The National Alliance on Mental Illness will hold its 2021 walk, NAMIWalks NJ Your Way: A United Day of Hope, virtually on Oct. 9

For more information, visit





Free mobile COVID-19 testing is offered at The Family Learning Center, 30 Hillside Ave., Metuchen, every Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Nasal PCR, saliva PCR and rapid antibody testing are available.

No appointment necessary. Walk ins accepted.

Bring ID and insurance card. No out-of-pocket costs for insured or uninsured people.



Gain stability from an in-demand occupation; apply for a Women’s Center career training grant from Jewish Family Services of Middlesex County.

Qualified persons who are active members of the JFS Women’s Center must submit an application and attend an interview. Grants are available for short-term training programs for in-demand jobs.

Eligible candidates must qualify as a “displaced homemaker,” a woman who is a single mother, divorced, separated, widowed, or living with a disabled spouse/partner.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, email [email protected]



Free mobile COVID-19 testing is offered at The Family Learning Center, 30 Hillside Ave., Metuchen, every Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Nasal PCR, saliva PCR and rapid antibody testing are available.

No appointment necessary. Walk ins accepted.

Bring ID and insurance card. No out-of-pocket costs for insured or uninsured people.




Gain stability from an in-demand occupation; apply for a Women’s Center career training grant from Jewish Family Services of Middlesex County.

Qualified persons who are active members of the JFS Women’s Center must submit an application and attend an interview. Grants are available for short-term training programs for in-demand jobs.

Eligible candidates must qualify as a “displaced homemaker,” a woman who is a single mother, divorced, separated, widowed, or living with a disabled spouse/partner.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, email [email protected]





Central Jersey SCORE, a non-profit resource partner of the Small Business Administration, is looking for volunteers to assist people looking to start a business or grow an existing small business.

The organization is recruiting business owners and executives, both current and retired, who want to share their experience and knowledge with today’s up-and-coming entrepreneurs.

The Central Jersey Chapter of SCORE serves Middlesex, Somerset and Hunterdon counties.

Central Jersey SCORE provides in-person mentoring and webinars, both offered virtually in line with current pandemic restrictions. In addition, the SCORE website offers tools and templates on a wide variety of topics and numerous online courses and webinars to assist small business owners through every aspect of business development and management. Services are offered free of charge.

Anyone interested in volunteering with SCORE or seeking additional information should email [email protected]



Dove Hospice Services of New Jersey seeks compassionate volunteers to provide support to local hospice patients and their families.

Hospice patient care volunteers visit with patients in their homes, which can also be nursing facilities or assisted living facilities, at least once a week. They read to the patient, reminisce about their lives, play cards, help with letter writing and provide respite for caregivers.

Visits can be virtual, and are either during the day or early evening.

Volunteers may also assist with administrative work within the hospice office.

Patient care volunteers complete an application and attend a virtual volunteer training program that covers the role of a hospice volunteer. Day and evening virtual training programs are offered.

To sign up for the next virtual training class, contact Volunteer Coordinator Deborah Adams at 732-405-3035 or email [email protected].


The United Way of Central Jersey’s COVID-19 Recovery Fund will assist individuals and families affected by the novel coronavirus with crucial basic expenses including rent, utilities, prescription medication/medical supplies, child care and food.
United Way will work with trusted community partners to identify individuals and families most in need of this temporary support.
Donations to the UWCJ COVID-19 Support Fund may be made online at Checks made payable to United Way may be mailed to United Way of Central Jersey, 32 Ford Ave., Milltown 08850.