RED BANK, NJ – May will bring an abundance of beautiful music to the Red Bank Public Library.   The month begins with “Women of Song,” a delightful choral group of ten women performing Broadway tunes and other favorites at the library on Saturday, May 1, 2010, from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m.  Directed by Randy Minkin, the group features a rich choral sound with multi-part harmonies, graced with solos and piano accompaniment. This free concert is perfect for an early Mother’s Day treat and all are ages are welcome.  Registration is not required.

On Thursday, May 13, 2010, from 7:30 to 9:00 p.m., The al wright Unit jazz trio returns to the library for a springtime concert featuring Red Bank’s own Al Wright on drums and Ruth Wright with vocals, along with Greg Murphy on piano.  They will be joined in one of the library’s most popular programs by dancer Carol Penn, a former member of the Alvin Ailey Dance Company.  Inspirational speaker and humorist, Bob Farley, will also be on hand to entertain the audience. The performance is free and no reservations are required.

Al Wright taught himself to play drums at the age of twelve and has been performing jazz ever since, adding the viola and tap.  Ruth Wright is a jazz vocalist with rare abilities.  Together the couple traveled with the famed Sun Ra Arkestra for several years.  Greg Murphy has played with big bands in Chicago, studied with Ellis Marsalis, Ron Carter, and Jaki Byard, and played with many fine musicians including drummer Rashied Ali.  A composer, he has recorded his own CDs and appears on several others.  The multi- talented dancer Carol Penn is also a medical doctor with an advanced certificate in Soma Yoga, the director of the Core of Fire Interfaith Dance Ministry, and co-founder of the Leadership Team of the Anjali Women’s Health Collective.

The Red Bank Public Library’s Acoustic Saturdays series continues on May 22 from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. in the Eisner New Jersey Room.  The Acoustic Saturdays programs at the library are produced and hosted by guitarist Anton Daub, the emcee of the weekly acoustic open microphone on Wednesday nights at Espresso Joe’s coffeehouse in Keyport and a frequent performer at many of the area’s acoustic music venues.  These free performances are supported in part by funds from the New Jersey State Library.

Gardeners from beginners to experienced will enjoy the program “Rain Gardens: Why and How” at the Red Bank Public Library on Saturday, May 8, at 11:00 a.m.  In the summer of 2009, Kenton Seydell of Siciliano Landscaping designed a water conserving “rain garden” for the front yard of the library. Members of the Navesink Garden Club with volunteers from the community planted and maintained the garden, now beginning its first full summer.   Mr. Seydell will discuss the purpose and construction of a rain garden, members of the Navesink Garden Club will suggest plants appropriate for a rain garden, and participants will have the opportunity to tour the garden and ask questions of the experts following the presentation.  The program is free and registration is not required.

Health education programs continue this month when Douglas L. Haviland of Meridian Life Support Training will return to the library to conduct a free Family and Friends CPR training class at the Red Bank Public Library on Monday, May 10, 2010, from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m.  An emergency training professional, Doug will demonstrate the life saving CPR skills needed for helping infants, children, and adults.  Registration is required for this popular program.  Please call Meridian Health at 732-776-4470 to register.  Please note that this class is not designed for those who require a CPR certification card for the workplace.

The free workshop “Head in the Right Direction” will provide information about living successfully with diabetes.  It will be presented by Merck & Co., Inc., at the Red Bank Public Library on Wednesday, May 19, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.  Participants will find out how to manage their diabetes and plan meals better, have their questions answered by a diabetes expert, and learn the importance of checking blood sugar and what the results mean.  Registration is requested. Please call 1-877-532-4545.

Artists seeking inspiration, motivation, and a special time to devote to their work are invited to attend an informal gathering once a month at the Red Bank Public Library. The “Artists’ Workshop” takes place the first Thursday of each month from 7:00 to 8:30 p.m. in the library Community Room.  The next meeting will be Thursday, May 6.   The workshops are free and no registration is required. Participants should bring their own drawing and painting materials, although oils are not permitted because of ventilation concerns.

Free computer instruction is available at the Red Bank Public Library by appointment.  Please visit or call the library at 732-842-0690 to register for a one hour, one-on-one session with our knowledgeable and patient volunteers.  Learn computer basics or get help with more advanced topics.

Free English as a Second Language classes for adults 18 and over are offered on a regular basis at the Red Bank Public Library in partnership with the Literacy Volunteers of Monmouth County.  Please contact the Literacy Volunteers of Monmouth County at 732-571-0209 or visit their website at for additional information on ESL classes, volunteer tutor training classes, and English conversation classes available in Monmouth County.

The Red Bank Senior Center in cooperation with the Red Bank Public Library hosts a book discussion group on the last Monday of each month at the Senior Center at 1:00 p.m.  Red Bank Borough residents age 60 and over are welcome to join the Center and participate in this or any of its other great programs. Call the Center at 732-747-5204 for more information.

The library hosts an adult book discussion group, “Reading on the River,” on the last Wednesday of each month from 7:00 to 8:00 p.m. For more information and to register, contact the library at 732-842-0690.

The Red Bank Photography Club meets the first Monday of each month at the library from 7:00 to 8:45 p.m.  Participants meet for tips, discussion, and sharing their photographs. An exhibit of photographs by club members will be on display at the library during the months of November and December.  For more information, call John Tyler at 732-768-6432, or e-mail him at [email protected].

The Friends of the Red Bank Public Library meet monthly in the Eisner New Jersey Room. Please call the library at 732-842-0690 for the next meeting date and more information about this vibrant group and its activities that support the library.

Additional information on these and other free programs in the Adult and Children’s Departments of the Red Bank Public Library will be available at the library, on the library’s website, or by calling the library at 732-842-0690.   Library hours are Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 10:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. and Tuesday, Friday, and Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.  The library is located at 84 West Front Street in Red Bank.

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Allan Dean

Allan Dean is editor, publisher, and founder of the Atlantic Highlands Herald. Published since 1999 and selected in 2000 by the Borough of Atlantic Highlands as one of their official newspapers, making...