Not Everyone Favors 'No Sledding'
The best comments from around Morris County.
Our Pet Project: Collecting Your Snow Photos
As we often do, we put out the call to during the two recent snowstorms for readers' photos. And we found ... readers sure do love to see their pets frolicking in the snow.
But the most original animal image we got had to be from Ron Caruso of East Valley Brook Road in Long Valley, who e-mailed over a picture of his llama, Larry, enjoying the winter weather (we initially thought Larry was an alpaca—our mistake).
Other great animal shots came from:
- Isabelle Ramotowski of Montville, whose German Shephard loves the snow
- Andrew Gering, who sent along this picture of Phoebe the Labradoodle.
- The Petitt family of Basking Ridge, who sent us a shot of two dogs playing.
- Shari Gross of Parsippany, whose dog, Dylan, was in a cozy sweater—and Kelly Brock of Chatham, who had Bogey bundled up just as warm.
- Bonnie Doll of Chatham, whose dog, Colbie, got a facefull of snow.
- Andi Williams, director of public relations for the Somerset Hills YMCA in Basking Ridge, whose dog gave a very serious pose.
- Tracy Scarfi of Connecticut, who sent us an image of a Hopatcong puppy with beautiful orange fur crouching in the cold.
- Jessica Romeo of Chatham, who said the snow makes her 11-year-old black lab think he's only 2 years old.
- Tom Salvas of Chatham, who showed us Kippy getting used to his snow boots.
For more great reader-submitted shots from around the Morris, Somerset and Sussex County areas, see our galleries from the winter's second storm, and the third one. Got great shots of your own from out in the snow? We'll still post them. Just e-mail them to Louis@Patch.com.
If you've ever got something to share with the community, tell Patch by leaving a comment on one of our stories, "shouting" it on our front page (just look for the box that asks "What do you have to say?"), submitting an announcement, or asking or answering a question in our Q&A section.
Get an Interesting Idea, It's All Downhill From There ...
Sledding at Montville's Camp Dawson may seem like fun, but since 2009, it's been off-limits, Montville Patch reported.
Reader Ernie thinks there are better solutions that signs telling people to stay away:
I believe the Township can make it safer for sledding by utilizing a slow-down area by spreading the composition of salt and ashes at the end of the run to insure the ability to stop, along with hay bails as a fail safe barrier. To help police the area, why not ask for volunteers to spend time supervising the kids instead of arresting them. It is good to see kids getting out and playing instead of getting fat at home sitting by their video games or computers, at least they are not getting in trouble. Remember, no matter what age, kids will always be kids.
Some interesting ideas in there, Ernie (though no one's arresting the kids, as far as we know ... they're just being told to stay away from the area for sledding). Do you think he's on to something? Tell him in the comments.
Butt, Butt ...
Morristown resident Sheila Kolesaire said in a letter to Morristown Patch that she sees one big, constant and annoying consequence of Morristown Memorial Hosptial's decision to go smoke-free: there are cigarette butts all over the place. She wrote:
It is now two years (January 2009) since Morristown Memorial went completely smoke free. Instead of the gazebo being used for smokers as they had done previously where it was contained, the sidewalks along the whole stretch of the structure now have a host of employees and visitors smoking who fail to use the disposal bins. The one identifiable disposal unit is always overflowing to the brim.
And her message was heard. The hospital's owner, Atlantic Health, offered this response in a comment:
When we made the decision to make Morristown Memorial Hospital a smoke-free campus in 2009, we did so understanding it would be an ongoing effort. We’ve had some successes worth mentioning. Many of our employees have stopped smoking, thanks to our smoking cessation programs. We’ve encouraged a healthier lifestyle for our patients and visitors and have gotten positive feedback from visitors who say they feel empowered to kick the habit for good. The effort is not without challenges. For those who still choose to smoke, we realize that not everyone takes responsibility for policing themselves and properly disposing of smoking litter. We have asked that our facilities staff schedule extra trips to empty trash receptacles on Franklin Street. We have also communicated with our managers and other staff to remind them that when they are on the job, they are also Morristown community members and are responsible for being good neighbors.
Atlantic went on to ask for patience, and pledged to work on the problem. We're glad we could help get the message to the right people. Got a message you're looking to get out? E-mail a letter to Patch at Nathana@Patch.com.
A Slice of Their Minds
You know what people have strong opinions about? Pizza.
We'd say this debate is far from settled. If you spend time in and around Jefferson, head over to the question to chime in.
And if you've got anything you'd like to ask your neighbors, see the Q&A link at the top of this page, and ask away.
A Snow Job
Most people would be happy that their DPWs had things in hand during the recent snow. But not Hopatcong Patch reader Josh Dubnick. He read our report "DPW Super: 'We Had the Whole Fleet Out,'" and seemed a little annoyed ... well, he seemed that way until we got to the smiley face:
I thought I'd have a day off from work but when the plow went by (3 times) at 3:30 AM, I knew I had no excuse. Thanks a lot! :) Really, Hopatcong DPW does a great job. The town roads are often better than Route 80!
I've used this space to criticize local government in the past, but in this case I would like to take the opportunity to offer my sincere thanks and appreciation for the incredible job done by our town leaders, emergency services, police and fire departments and especially our public works department for consistently providing the very best response to snow storms and other emergency events. The streets are plowed early and often, salt is put down even on the small secondary roads and without fail Chatham is ahead of our neighbors when the bad weather hits.
Many thanks for a job well done.
How do you feel the local DPW did in the snow? Tell us in the comments on this story.
Don't Have to Go Far For Wine
In our weekly column, "Day Tripper" (which looks at New Jersey destinations that are out of town, but in each), we highlighted some of New Jersey's wineries in Hunterdon County. And while we offered up some more local alternatives as well, reader Judy Mullins noted one optoin much closer to home than anything we thought of:
Check out the Toto's operation right HERE in Madison.....wine-making in your 'backyard'....
We should have thought of that! After all, we've featured Villa Rose Wine School, which Carmine Toto III runs out of the back of the pool house on his father's property. If you've never checked it out, give our earlier story a read and see if it might get you in the mood for a glass.
High School Students Say Board Has Something to Learn
Sandra Korn and Katherine Simeon are regular contributors to Basking Ridge Patch; and until last year, they were also students of Ridge High School. So when they spoke about school cuts in this submitted piece, One Period Too Few: The Harm of Budget Cuts, they had some up-close perspective. They spoke about the loss of teachers, of class periods, and of opportunities for AP classes.
Some, like SZ, thought the district had made wise compromises, for instance, in dropping from nine periods to eight: "There are top schools in the state that have an 8 period day - ie Millburn. Their SAT scores/rankings are higher than Ridge."
And still others, like Clarke thought the cuts needed a major review: "If you take a look at the course catalog for Ridge you will see that there are plenty of places that could be cut without hurting academics one once. Can we really afford orchestra for example?"
How do you feel? Are the schools on the right track? Head over to the article and join the discussion.
A Cat By Any Other Name
When Parsippany Patch ran its story "Hair Ball: Cats Strut Their Stuff at Parsippany Hilton," it told readers about the qualities of a prized "hairless Egyptian Sphynx cat, one of 40 breeds at the convention."
Well, that didn't sit quite right with Allison Reynolds, who let us know Sphynx cats originated in Canada—and have nothing to do with Egypt.
Carrie Stetler stuck by the name ... at first ... acknowledging she's no cat expert. Turns out Allison is, and she takes her expertise seriously:
As the writer of the Sphynx Cat Blog http://www.sphynxcatblog.com and a book on the breed I can assure you that the name of the breed is not Egyptian Sphynx . Check out Wikipedia if you do not believe me http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sphynx_(cat). Sorry about being pedantic, but there is so much misinformation on the breed on the internet spread by well-meaning people.
We bow to your superior wisdom and knowledge on this one, Allison. Now we'll just quietly slink away ...