By Chris Rotolo |ATLANTIC HIGHLANDS – If a kid from Highlands who worked at the Quick Stop can make it, so can you.It’s a sentiment that local icon Kevin Smith has used to inspire a generation of independent filmmakers and one that holds weight, considering the Henry Hudson Regional High School alum was in fact an employee of the Leonardo convenience store while he wrote, directed and produced his breakthrough 1994 hit “Clerks.”A champion of independent film and the creative minds behind them, Smith has announced he’ll be coming home next month in support of the Atlantic Highlands-based FilmOneFest, where he’ll lead an intimate Q&A session on Sunday, May 6 at the vintage Atlantic Cinemas.“Whenever Kevin has hosted events like this, he’s always encouraging and supportive of the artists who are there to ask questions of him,” said Corinna Thuss, FilmOneFest managing director. “He’s genuine and speaks from the heart. He’s able to make a connection. That’s why his story continues to inspire. It’s his authenticity. You can’t fake that and it resonates.”Thuss is in her fourth year with the FilmOneFest – a showcase dedicated to two-minute-long films – and alongside festival founder Robert O’Connor and their staff of dedicated volunteers, the Atlantic Highlands native has worked to make the 10th anniversary of this celebration of the short film a special one.“I know 10 years is a special milestone for Robert and everyone involved and being able to have Kevin be part of the celebration speaks to how far this festival has come. We’re at a place now where we can properly host and promote a huge event featuring a filmmaker of his stature.”Smith is home recovering from life-saving surgery after he suffered a massive heart attack Feb. 25 while shooting a stand-up special in California. According to social media posts by Smith, he had a 100 percent blockage of his left anterior descending artery, also known as a widow-maker. His recovery is not expected to affect his attendance at the event.This is the second consecutive year Smith will be headlining a Q&A event in support of FilmOneFest and festival volunteer Janet Petersen is the one responsible for bringing the filmmaker on board.“Kevin has been a longtime friend of mine,” said Petersen, who met Smith in the eighth grade at Henry Hudson Regional School. “We connected from the very beginning. He was always someone that you just felt comfortable around. He genuinely cares about people and I think that’s why he and his work resonates so strongly with audiences.”Petersen, who attended college in California before settling with her family in the borough, became involved with FilmOneFest two years ago when she learned of the event through her volunteer work with the Atlantic Highlands Arts Council.“The Arts Council offers a free summer arts camp that my two boys take part in and I wanted to give back to the organization that has given my kids so much,” said Petersen, a wealth manager at Oppenheimer. “That’s when I gave Kevin a call and mentioned the festival to him. He was on board immediately and asked what we could do.”The “Intimate Q&A with Kevin Smith” is not part of the scheduled FilmOneFest events but rather a precursor to the festivities, as the festival itself is set to take place on July 21.Tickets for the event are limited and can be purchased at filmonefest.org. There are 22 rows of seating in the Atlantic Cinemas theater. Access to premium seating (Rows 2 through 5) is $60, while regular admission seating is $55.Event Prep – The Kevin Smith Tour of the Jersey ShoreKevin Smith is the mastermind behind such revered cult classics as “Clerks,” “Chasing Amy” and “Dogma,” a series of films that showcased the filmmaker’s adoration for his Bayshore roots by filming at least portions of the movies at various Jersey Shore locations.You can prepare for his forthcoming Q&A by taking this Kevin Smith Tour of the Jersey Shore:The Quick Stop: The tour starts where it all began for Smith, at the Quick Stop convenience store located at 58 Leonard Ave. in Leonardo. Smith filmed the majority of “Clerks” inside the shop, save for some street hockey antics on the roof and select scenes at the now defunct RST Video Rental. He also brought “Clerks II” to a heartwarming conclusion at the shop. Head inside to check out the Quick Stop’s “shrine” to Smith and search for the perfect dozen eggs.The Kings Arms Diner: When Ben Affleck delivered a royalty check to Jay and Silent Bob at this Belford eatery back in the 1997 film “Chasing Amy,” it was called the Marina Diner. Located at 553 Route 36, the diner has since been renamed the Kings Arms, but the layout is still the same. Walk inside, head to the left and pop a squat in the third booth on the right.Jay and Silent Bob’s Secret Stash: Stopping by The Secret Stash at 35 Broad St. in Red Bank is a must for any fan on the Kevin Smith Tour of the Jersey Shore. None of his movies were filmed at the location, but you can see memorabilia from the sets of “Clerks II” and “Dogma.”Jack’s Music Shoppe: After perusing the stash, head across the street to Jack’s Music Shoppe at 30 Broad St. where scenes from “Chasing Amy” were shot. You can also sit on the steps of the apartment to the left of the legendary record store, the upstairs abode that Affleck and Jason Lee called home in the 1997 film.Victory Park: Get away from the hustle and bustle of downtown Red Bank by heading down River Road to Victory Park in Rumson. It was on the swing set where Affleck and Joey Lauren Adams fell in love in “Chasing Amy.”Silver Ball Museum: One thing you may not have known about God – or Alanis Morissette, who played the supreme being in Smith’s 1999 production “Dogma” – is that the omniscient being is a big fan of ski ball, or at least that’s what Smith led us to believe in his star-studded spiritual satire. God can be seen strolling on the Asbury Park Boardwalk after a ski ball binge at the 1000 Ocean Ave. locale.The Berkeley Oceanfront Hotel: In “Chasing Amy” Affleck and Lee play a pair of successful comic book artists who we first see at a local comic convention. The convention was shot in the ballroom at the storied Berkeley Oceanfront Hotel at 1401 Ocean Ave. in Asbury Park.Ocean Ice Palace: After a long day of touring, the last stop on this trek brings you to the historic Ocean Ice Palace. Cool off with a skate or take in a game from the balcony seating above the ice where Affleck and Adams appeared in the climactic scene of “Chasing Amy.”This article was first published in the April 12-19, 2018 print edition of The Two River Times.
“We talk about parents and guardians practicing responsible gun ownership, but the same needs to extend to those who are selling guns in this state,” Houghtaling said. “Again, it comes down to taking responsibility. When you’re in that business, you have a responsibility to inform your customers. And we certainly need to take responsibility in creating information that can be consumed.” The first of two bills (A-3696) requires the safe storage of a firearm and establishes penalties for improper firearm storage. Under the measure, a legal owner of a firearm that is not in use at a premise under the owner’s control is required to store the firearm in a securely locked box or container in a location, which a reasonable person would believe to be secure. Users may also secure the firearm with a trigger lock. By creating a law that calls for stricter storage requirements for firearms owners, Assemblywoman Joann Downey believes unnecessary tragedies can be avoided and the threat of gun violence in schools stemmed. Both bills are due to gobefore Assembly SpeakerCraig Coughlin (D-19) forfur ther consideration. “There are no protections against an all too familiar story we’ve seen in the news, like a young person who is suffering from anxiety or depression and then locates their parent’s gun. They take their own life and leave their family to mourn a senseless tragedy,” Downey said. Those who fail to adhere to the mandate will be found guilty of a disorderly persons offense, which carries the potential for a six-month prison sentence and a maximum $1,000 fine. According to testimony about the bill provided by Downey to the Assembly Judiciary Committee, though there are requirements and penalties meant to protect children from accessing loaded firearms that are not in use, there is no general requirement for the storage of unloaded firearms. Another staggering figure is that 80 percent of guns used in youth suicide attempts were reportedly stored in the victim’s home or accessed in the home of a friend or relative. The lack of regulation allows gun owners to leave weaponry in accessible locations like a kitchen table or a bedroom nightstand, even with ammunition situated nearby. Additionally, 75 percent of first and second graders know where their parents store their weapons and approximately 36 percent admitted to handling the family firearm without parental permission. An Assembly panel recently advanced seven measures to address gun safety concerns, including legislation sponsored by Downey (D-11) and fellow Democrat Eric Houghtaling (D-11), which specifically targets safe storage of unloaded firearms in the home, as well as mandatory education of firearm dealers about suicide prevention. According to Houghtaling, the informational materials would advise store customers and firing range patrons about different ways to prevent a friend or family member in crisis from accessing their weapon. “This is about responsibility,” Houghtaling said. “If you’re going to own a gun it’s not too much to ask that you store it properly. I’m not here to be anti-gun person. I’m not preaching about limiting a gun owner’s rights. But we have to be better about keeping guns out of the hands of those who are inexperienced, like young children.” It was a particularly disturbing sentiment for Houghtaling, who recognized a mental health concern among youth across the nation and citied several instances of youth suicide in his district during a June 17 interview with The Two River Times. The Center of Injury Research and Prevention at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia published statistics stating that 1.7 million children live with unlocked, loaded guns in their homes. The second piece of legislation (A-3896) requires the State Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal to cooperate with the Shareef M. Elnahal, the commissioner of health, to develop suicide prevention course curriculum and informational materials for retail firearm dealers who sell guns or operate a firing range to display and distribute to patrons. “No other reasonable nation allows for firearms to be left unsecured where any child or thief can easily obtain them. If every firearm in New Jersey were safely secured in a locked container tomorrow, we would see the rate of suicides, unintentional tragedies and school shootings rapidly plummet,” Downey said.
Teams arrive Friday for the banquet with official opening ceremonies set to go Saturday prior to the Trail/White Rock contest.Trail, with two players from Nelson on the roster — Reece Tambellini and Quin Hall — plays Hastings Sunday at 10 a.m. and Dunbar, Forest Hills and Beacon Hill Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, respectively, at 5 p.m.The rest of the team is from Trail and Fruitvale.Kiran Johnston, Nolan Piche and Dawson denBeisne are the Fruitvalites on the squad while Trail’s contingent consists of Bradley Ross, Colton Miracle, Ross St. Jean, Derek Green and Jon Ballarin.Thursday is a rain out day.Friday the top four teams meet in semi final round before the two winners advance to Saturday’s Championship game at noon.The winner represents the province of BC at the Canadian Championships, August 4-11 in Edmonton, Alta.Trail has won the Canadian title five times, the last coming in 1990.For more information go to: http://www.traillittleleague.ca/Home_Page.html Baseball.The sport of the dog days of summer.Fans looking to watch some of the best youth baseball in the province should take flight to Andy Bilesky Park in Trail for the B.C. Little League Championships.The six-team tournament begins Saturday with the host Trail Allstars up against District 3 rep White Rock at 1:30 p.m.The other teams in the tournament are Hastings and Dunbar of Vancouver, Beacon Hill of Victoria and Forest Hills from the Sunshine Coast/Whistler area.The Trail All Stars enter ithe tournament with a 16-2 record of exhibition and tournament play.The squad has a pair of tournament wins, last weekend at the Pullman Summer Classic and in Kelso, Washington.
ARCADIA, Calif. (April 29, 2015)–Defending champ Fury Kapcori and Argentine-bred Catch a Flight head a competitive field of nine 3-year-olds and up in the Grade III, $100,000 Precisionist Stakes to be contested at 1 1/16 miles on Saturday, Kentucky Derby Day, at Santa Anita. The Precisionist will be run as the 10th race on an 11-race card, which gets underway at 11:30 a.m.Trained and owned in-part by Jerry Hollendorfer, Fury Kapcori was a scintillating 5 ¾ length gate to wire winner of last year’s Precisionist, but he has been winless in three subsequent starts, including a disappointing last place effort at even money in a six furlong classified allowance at Golden Gate Fields on March 29–his first start in nine months.With Rafael Bejarano, who guided him to four consecutive wins last year away to ride Saturday in Kentucky, the 5-year-old horse by Tiznow will be ridden for the first time by Drayden Van Dyke. Owned by Hollendorfer, Rick Awtrey and George Todaro, Fury Kapcori figures to be sent from the gate as he tries to recapture his form of a year ago. With two wins and two seconds at a mile and a sixteenth, he’s 17-6-5-1 overall with earnings of $520,790.Hollendorfer will also be represented by Mr. and Mrs. Larry D. Williams’ homebred Rousing Sermon who comes off a fifth place run at 5-1 in the Santana Mile Stakes March 29. A California-bred earner of $818,072, he has six wins from 33 starts and will likely employ come from behind tactics on Saturday.Trained by Richard Mandella, Catch a Flight attended the pace in the Grade I Santa Anita Handicap on March 7, but never posed a threat while running third to Shared Belief, who defeated the Argentine-bred by 4 ¼ lengths. A neck winner of a mile and one eighth allowance at Santa Anita two starts back on Feb. 13, Catch a Flight, who has always been highly regarded in the Mandella camp, will make his fourth stateside start in the Precisionist.Owned by Haras Santa Maria de Araras, Inc., Catch a Flight is a 5-year-old horse by Giant’s Causeway who won sprinting on turf in Brazil and at a flat mile on dirt. The Precisionist will be his first try at 1 1/16 miles. With earnings of $213,239, his overall mark stands at 13-7-0-3.Trainer Darrell Vienna’s Mystery Train lends depth to the fray, as he returns to Santa Anita following a close second in the Grade III, 1 1/16 miles Mineshaft Handicap at Fairgrounds in New Orleans Feb. 21. A 5-year-old Argentine-bred ridgling, Mystery Train tried gate to wire tactics in the Mineshaft and could pose problems for Fury Kapcori on the front end Saturday.Owned by Red Baron’s Barn, LLC and Rancho Temescal, Mystery Train was a Group I winner at 1 ¼ miles in Argentina, but is winless in four stateside tries. He’s 23-8-5-3, with earnings of $451,007.Trainer Bob Hess’s Blue Tone comes off an authoritative 2 ¾ length win in the Santana Mile Stakes March 29, and would relish a stalking trip on Saturday with Bay Area-based Abel Cedillo in to ride. Owned by Engelberg, Schroeder Farms, LLC and Jan Steeper, Blue Tone is 5-2-2-1 at 1 1/16 miles. A 6-year-old Kentucky-bred gelding by Birdstone, he’s 14-5-3-2 overall with earnings of $338,150.Overmatched at 11-1 in the Grade II, 1 1/8 miles Oaklawn Handicap April 11, trainer Doug O’Neill’s Sammy Mandeville was a lights-out 6 ½ length allowance winner coming from far off the pace in a 1 1/16 miles allowance at Santa Anita March 6 and would benefit greatly from a fast pace. A 4-year-old Kentucky-bred colt by Rock Hard Ten, he’s owned by W.C. Racing and is 12-2-2-1 with earnings of $146,912.Claimed two starts back for $40,000 on March 8, trainer Ted West Jr.’s Motown Men seeks his first stakes win and sports a solid last-out Beyer Speed figure of 103, the result of dazzling 7 ½ length second condition allowance win at a flat mile on April 10. A 6-year-old California-bred gelding by Decarchy, he’s owned by Gulliver Racing, LLC and is 27-5-6-4 with earnings of $282,459. He’ll be ridden back by a red-hot Tyler Baze.Dorine and John R. Lanza’s homebred Magic Mark has been idle since running a close third in a one mile allowance Feb. 20 and could help fuel a hot pace as his two wins from four starts at the distance have come when on or near the lead. Conditioned by high percentage Ron Ellis, Magic Mark, a 5-year-old California-bred gelding by Benchmark, has four wins from 11 starts and seeks his first stakes win. He has earnings of $190,604.Admission gates open at 7:15 a.m. on Saturday for simulcast wagering on races from Churchill Downs and around the country. The Grade III Precisionist will be run as the 10th race on an 11-race program, which gets underway with first live race post time at 11:30 a.m. The complete Precisionist field with jockeys and weights, in post position order is as follows: Sammy Mandeville, Alex Solis, 119; Fury Kapcori, Drayden Van Dyke, 121; Rousing Sermon, Corey Nakatani, 119; Appealing Tale, Edwin Maldonado, 119; Catch a Flight, Flavien Prat, 119; Mystery Train, Santiago Gonzalez, 121; Blue Tone, Abel Cedillo, 119; Magic Mark, Fernando Perez, 119, and Motown Men, Tyler Baze, 119. COMPETITIVE FIELD OF NINE 3-YEAR-OLDS AND UP HEADLINE 11-RACE CARD THAT STARTS AT 11:30 A.M. ON KENTUCKY DERBY DAY
ARCADIA, Calif. (May 25, 2016)–A runaway 16 ¼ length first-out maiden winner at 6 ½ furlongs on April 10, Nick Alexander’s homebred Enola Gray heads a field of six California-bred or sired 3-year-old fillies in Saturday’s $200,000 Melair Stakes at 1 1/16 miles.Originally run at Hollywood Park in 1996, the Melair was taken last year by trainer Phil D’Amato’s Sheer Pleasure and will be run for the third consecutive year at Santa Anita on Saturday. HACKTIVISM: Owned and bred by Reddam Racing, LLC, this Square Eddie filly clipped heels late and was placed fifth, beaten 3 ¼ lengths, in Golden Gate’s Campanile Stakes May 1. A maiden winner at a mile on turf here two starts back on March 10, Hacktivisim has run three good races on turf, but it remains to be seen if she can be effective on dirt, as she was well beaten going six furlongs on the main track in her debut here on Jan. 2. Hacktivism, who is out of the Irish-bred mare Prima Creatura, will make her fifth career start in the Melair.THE $200,000 MELAIR STAKES IN POST POSITION ORDER WITH JOCKEYS & WEIGHTS Race 4 (of 11) Approximate post time 3:30 p.m. PDT SHY CARMELITA: D’Amato’s second entrant, she is also owned and bred by Alexander and is by Grazen, from the Malek mare Malley Girl. A first-out maiden winner at six furlongs Jan. 30, she comes off 4 ¼ first condition allowance win here going six furlongs on May 7. Shy Carmelita, who has shown she can press the pace or come from behind in four sprints, will try two turns for the first time in the Melair. MELAIR IS ONE OF FIVE CALIFORNIA GOLD RUSH DAY STAKES FOR HORSES BRED OR SIRED IN CALIFORNIA ENOLA GRAY: Trained by Phil D’Amato, Enola Gray is by the Alexander-owned Grazen and is out of his More Than Ready mare, Unsung Heroine. Off at 4-1, she demolished eight rivals with a front-running blitz under Tyler Baze in her debut and will likely employ similar tactics as she stretches out in the Melair. First post time on Saturday is at 2 p.m. Admission gates will open at 11:30 a.m. For scratches, late changes and complete morning line information, please visit santaanita.com. ALLSQUARE: A chestnut filly by Square Eddie out of the Decarchy mare, Showtime Apollo, Allsquare, who was bred by D’Amato, is his third entrant in the race. A game maiden winner going a flat mile on turf here two starts back on March 31, she disappointed as the 5-2 favorite in the mile turf Campanile, finishing seventh, beaten four lengths by Cheekaboo. CHEEKABOO: Trained by Peter Eurton, this chestnut filly by Unusual Heat from the Souvenir Copy mare Sandy Cheeks comes off a come from behind win going one mile on turf in state-bred Campanile Stakes at Golden Gate Fields on May 1. Owned by Sharon Alesia, Mike Burns and Joseph Ciaglia Racing, LLC, Cheekaboo broke her maiden coming from off the pace on dirt here four starts back on Jan. 10. With Enola Gray in the lineup, there figures to be a solid early pace and if good enough, Cheekaboo will hope to be flying late. Her overall mark stands at 6-2-2-1, with earnings of $137,680. Enola Gray–Tyler Baze–120Allsquare–Joe Talamo–120Cheekaboo–Rafael Bejarano–124Hacktivism–Mario Gutierrez–120The Spiral Jetter–Santiago Gonzalez–120Shy Carmelita–Martin Garcia–122 THE SPIRAL JETTER: Originally fourth, beaten two lengths by Cheekaboo, this Andy Mathis-trained filly by Don’tsellmeshort, out of the Renteria mare Early Arriver, was placed third in the Campanile Stakes and will try natural dirt for the first time in the Melair. A 2 ½ length open maiden special weight winner going a flat mile on synthetic Tapeta at Golden Gate three starts back on Feb. 7, The Spiral Jetter, who is 5-1-2-1, has been ridden in all five Golden Gate starts by Julien Couton, but will be handled for the first time by Santiago Gonzalez on Saturday.