Wednesday, February 22, 2017


Maplewood Township is implementing tighter safety requirements for the rebuilding of the portion of the Avalon Bay project recently destroyed by fire, including "fire watchers" to be hired by the developer and a ban on propane heaters that were in place when the fire occurred.

Mayor Vic Deluca announced the new restrictions during Tuesday night's Township Committee meeting. 

While he said the Essex County Prosecutor's Office had not determined a cause for the six-alarm blaze that struck on Feb. 4 and destroyed the final portion of the 235-unit complex, Deluca said propane heaters were in use and would no longer be allowed. 

He also said the Township will ask that developers of other similar projects in town also not use such heaters.

The mayor added that the reconstruction of the destroyed portion will begin in March, with the completed project likely finished by the end of 2017.

See his entire update below:


For the sixth year in a row, Maplewoodstock will provide alcohol sales through an enclosed beer garden after the Township Committee on Tuesday approved such sales.

The TC voted, 4-1, in favor of the request by event organizers Drew Dix and Gary Shippy. TC Member India Larrier, who had regularly opposed the sales in the past, was the lone vote against it.

See the presentation by the organizers below:

"While I do support Maplewoodstock," Larrier said. She later added, "I am still continuing to believe that alcohol does not belong in our parks."

TC Member Nancy Adams said she supports the sales, but did caution that there had been some past clean-up problems that she hoped would be improved.

Maplewoodstock, which is in its 14th year, is set for the weekend of July 8 and 9.


10:15 am – 11:15 am  
Hilton Branch – It’s not just for your kids! Here’s your chance to learn about programming in a   relaxed and non-intimidating setting.  See what all the buzz is about: find out how much fun hands-on coding can be.  Open to new and returning participants. Babes in arms ok.  Registration is required. Go to

Tuesday, February 21, 2017


Tonight's Township Committee meeting has a pretty busy agenda.

Along with a promised update on the Avalon Bay Update, the TC will consider the annual application for a beer garden at Maplewoodstock, as well as discuss possible changes to the leaf blower ban and increased parking and traffic ticket fines.

See the entire agenda HERE. The meeting is at 7:30 p.m. at Town Hall, 574 Valley St.

There is always public comment as well, where you can speak up, ask a question, give them a piece of your mind or just a pat on the back.

Remember, they work for you! 


A second candidate has thrown a hat into the Township Committee Democratic primary race, assuring there will be at least two challengers seeking the Democratic nomination for the seat being vacated by TC Member India Larrier, who has said she will not run for re-election.

Carla Caraballo, a seven-year Maplewood resident, is also the second gay candidate to publicly declare for the Democratic nomination for Township Committee. In a letter to the Maplewood Democratic Committee, Caraballo stated she is a U.S. Air Force Reserve flight nurse and currently working as a licensed practical nurse.

As a resident of Jacoby Street, she has also been involved in the Neighborhood Watch Program there since 2012.

See her candidacy letter HERE.

Caraballo is also in a same sex marriage with her long-time wife and the mother of two and grandmother of two.

She joins gay activist and consultant Dean Dafis, who tossed his hat into the primary race two weeks ago. 

Also running is Mayor Vic Deluca, who is seeking re-election to the seat he has held since 2009.

MDC Chairman Ian Grodman said the committee will continue to accept nominations for the primary endorsement through Feb. 27.

On the Republican side, former TC candidate Mike Summersgill has said he plans to seek the Republican nomination once again in 2017. He lost his bid in the 2016 general election against Democrat Frank McGehee.

Candidates seeking the Democratic or Republican primary nominations can submit their paperwork until April 3. The primary is set for June 6.


Maplewood has continued to promote the rights of all residents, from gays to immigrants to minorities of all types.

The most recent was the declaration of the Township as a "welcoming community," a clear defense against federal efforts to prosecute immigrants in our community. 

This past week, another strong supportive move was seen in Maplewood Village as the Township raised a banner not only supporting Black History Month, but declaring that "Black Lives Matter," clear support for the positive racial equality movement that some on the right have sought to demonize.



Maplewoodian and Columbia High School graduate Marques Brownlee was named one of the top black young innovators in the nation by NBC News this month.

The NBC News NBCBLK28, described as the top 28 black "innovators, vanguards, trendsetters and pioneers under 28" cited Brownlee for his success as a YouTuber and tech reviewer.

The award notice stated:

Marques Brownlee, 23, Maplewood, NJ
Tech Reviewer & YouTube Star
One can arguably say that there aren't many people in tech like Marques Brownlee. If you factor in that he's 23, Black and basically spends his days testing really cool technology and showcasing his findings on YouTube, that disparity is a little more self-evident.
Our NBCBLK28 recipient has an uncanny knack for shedding light on what he calls "dope tech." You can tell he knows his stuff, but he also breaks down the specifications of the products in a very conversational manner that's easy to digest.
Affable yet informative. Armed with more than 4 million YouTube subscribers and an alias fit for a Terminator villain, it's no wonder as to how menacing the digital grind is for the New Jersey native known online simply as MKBHD. He's not actually a Schwarzenegger adversary—MKB are the initials for his first, middle, and last name. The HD stands for high-definition

See more on Brownlee, who is the son of former Township Committee Member Marlon Brownlee, HERE.

And watch his YouTube videos HERE.


Baby Lit

10:30 am – 11:00 am

Main Library * Ages Birth – 2 ½ * Drop In
Tuesdays 2/7, 2/14, 2/21 @ 10:30-11 am

Hilton Drop-In Craft: Gee’s Bend Quilt

12:00 pm – 8:00 pm

Hilton Branch ● All Ages ● Drop In
Every Tuesday in February 2/7, 2/14, 2/21, 2/28 @ 12-8 pm
Drop in and make a paper quilt square for our Gee’s Bend quilt! The Quilts of Gee’s Bend are quilts created by a group of women who live or have lived in the isolated African-American hamlet of Gee’s Bend, Alabama. They are considered to be one of the most important African-American visual and cultural contributions to the history of art within the United States.

Hilton Computer Explorations

1:00 pm – 2:00 pm

Hilton Branch – Computer beginners and intermediate users can get help with:
  • Using a mouse
  • Creating basic documents
  • Managing an email account
  • Searching the Internet
  • Viewing photos online
The instructor will help with your specific needs. No registration needed.

Create Space – Maplewood Library’s Makerspace is Open!

5:00 pm – 8:00 pm

Hilton Branch – Every Tuesday 5:00-8:00 pm, Thursday 5:00-8:00 pm, and Saturday 10-1 pm. Patrons can use Rhino 3D software to build a model, print an object on our 3D printer or use our new color printer or laminator.  There are also Snap Circuits, Squishy Circuits, littleBits and SparkFun kits for the kids. Raspberry Pi single board computers are also available to learn more about computer science.  More information about the Create Space…

Digital Device Clinic

5:00 pm – 7:00 pm

Get free one-on-one support for using your e-reader, tablet, smartphone, or other electronic device.  The clinics will take place during the Create Space drop-in hours. Open to adults, teens and children. 

Pajama Sing-a-Long Storytime

7:00 pm – 7:30 pm

Hilton Branch All Ages Drop In
Come comfy-cozy in your PJ’s, hear stories, and sing songs! The best bedtime treat around!