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“BROTHERS”  a Documentary Film by Jack Ballo  Premiering at Indie Film Festival Red Bank on July 30.   A REVIEW by Calvin Schwartz   July 22, 2017 “BROTHERS” a Documentary Film by Jack Ballo Premiering at Indie Film Festival Red Bank on July 30. A REVIEW by Calvin Schwartz July 22, 2017(0)

“BROTHERS”  a Documentary Film by Jack Ballo  Premiering at Indie Film Festival Red Bank on July 30.   A REVIEW by Calvin Schwartz   July 22, 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I especially like Friday afternoon’s synchronicity, usually arriving unannounced and unexpected. A long story but I was emailing (chatting) back and forth with a very accomplished film director in Edinburgh, Scotland today. One of our points of commonality was Charles Dickens and his haunting social consciousness and foresight. When Dickens wrote ‘A Christmas Carol’ in 1843, he told of a boy who represented ignorance and a girl, want. Beware of the boy. The problems of 1843 are still here today but magnified beyond comprehension. Nothing has changed.

Then, minutes after chatting with the director in Scotland, another director, much closer to my Jersey home, emailed me and asked if I’d watch his new documentary, “Brothers” which is entered in next week’s Indie Film Festival in Red Bank. Without hesitation, I responded to Jack Ballo from Ultravision Films that I’m thrilled to watch and review. The key for me is Jack Ballo’s past deep introspective work with social consciousness in our modern changing world. Jack’s earlier film, ‘Destiny’s Bridge’ a riveting documentary, dealt with his spending two years filming in Tent City, Lakewood, New Jersey, where up to 112 people lived in tents without heat, water, light, empathy for up to 10 years. They were homeless for all kinds of reasons and there was no place for them here in New Jersey.

 

I met Jack Ballo back in Tent City and learned about homelessness 22 miles from my comfortable suburban Monmouth County home. After seeing Jack’s film, “Destiny’s Bridge’ (which you all should see) and my personal experiences in Tent City, I was changed forever. Something happened with my soul. Jack Ballo is replete with soul, caring, pro activity and a rare, precious beautiful conscience for fellow humans. He doesn’t scream injustice and human suffering and need; he makes wondrous emotional films, innovative and provocative.

Now Jack is back with another documentary, “Brothers” which I just watched and I’ll watch again tomorrow afternoon and again because I have to. Tender is this film about two brothers, whom Jack grew up with in Sayreville, New Jersey and were now living in the woods in their home town.

Here is the must-see innovation of Jack’s journey. He visited them in the woods once a month for two years in their small encampment, a few pitched tents, clothes lines, rain water capturing sheet, solar cells for battery power and a parked bike for transportation to a local food market’s dumpster for discarded sandwiches. Yes, they were brothers who spent their inheritance on alcohol and had nowhere to go for four years. Jack filmed them only with this iPhone. The quality of the picture is outstanding as is his eye for detail and humanism.

 

 

It was fascinating special film-making to witness the quick, seamless change of seasons. Indeed quick, the film is 34 minutes, but almost endless, in its draining emotion. Jack captured essences of homeless life tenderly; a scene of a brother combing his hair looking into a piece of broken mirror on a tree; the life cycle of a tomato plant until a basket of freshly picked Jersey tomatoes; descriptions of being warm in a tent, under a quilt in two-degree temperature; a brother unveiling his Sayreville High School diploma from 1979, with a small colony of ants dancing on the parchment and a quick shot of a toilet commode. Stark realism. No punches pulled although there was a curious punching bag in several scenes.

Jack gently asked questions, the brothers Mark and Steve did most of the talking. At times, there was eerie silence in the woods. What I enjoy about his film making is stark symbolism and curious sights like a jet plane overhead flying south and a year later flying north or east or west.

There is a Christmas scene and a resolution to this heartfelt film. It’s 4:10 AM (Saturday) now as I finish writing. I’m grateful for synchronicity of the day and Jack Ballo passing my way yet one more time.

 

 

 

A New NJ Discover Series: “Happenstance” by Calvin Schwartz  July 15th 2017 A New NJ Discover Series: “Happenstance” by Calvin Schwartz July 15th 2017(0)

A New NJ Discover Series: “Happenstance” by Calvin Schwartz  July 15th 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Happenstance by definition is a chance happening or event. I just looked it up. It’s stuff you don’t plan. My life these past six years at NJ Discover continues to be a journey of discovery (obviously), exploration, revelation and arrival. As many of you know, I’ve had the free-wheeling opportunity to travel around New Jersey, meeting amazing, wondrous people, working, playing, growing and who also do the ‘living and dying’ right here in the Garden State. I got the “living and dying” idea from a soliloquy that George Bailey (James Stewart) gave in one of all our favorite movies, “It’s A Wonderful Life.

The other day I was travelling around Springfield, New Jersey, sort of my old stomping grounds, and it was through basic happenstance that I came to Marino’s Fine Foods, Seafood, Italian Deli and Catering at 905 Mountain Avenue, Springfield. Walking around inside, doing deep absorptive aromatic food inhalations, that I stumbled upon the idea to tell a brief story of where I was and call it ‘Happenstance.’ Nothing elaborate or introspective, but I knew there was a feel-good story here.

 

The timing was perfect. It was off hours, late in the afternoon, awaiting a severe thunderstorm and I was also hanging around with NJ Bad Boy of Comedy Mike Marino (absolutely no relation to the owners of Marino’s Fine Foods, Michael and Linda Marino).

Linda and I sat down at a quiet little table in the corner. I told her that I was a journalist and was totally enamored with where I was.  In the distance, Michael was making home-made mozzarella cheese. Linda dispatched me over to watch. The cheese was bathing and being stretched out carefully. Then Michael gave me a warm piece to taste. It was heavenly. Of course, later, I had my own plate of fresh mozzarella and I continued my heavenly tasting journey.

 

 

 

 

Michael is a third generation in food. His grandfather came from Sicily and peddled fish originally in a horse and buggy in Brooklyn which means there were no cars yet. His grandfather did that fish gig until 1968. Linda and Michael have been at this location for 21 years.

They serve lunch every day and dinner on Wednesday and Friday nights and are closed on Mondays during the summer. I had to ask this burning question, after all, I was with consummate experts, and perhaps they could finally set me straight after decades of confusion and bad guidance, do you call it gravy or sauce? Suddenly a great veil of hypnotic confusion was lifted and I would see clearly now. Michael explained, “Sauce is with tomato, garlic, onion, basil and gravy is with meat.” I suddenly pictured Peter Clemenza telling Michael Corleone how to prepare sauce and gravy in that kitchen scene.

 

 

Linda told me that Michael also makes homemade cannoli cream with mascarpone cheese. Would I like to try it? I answered yes but no. I was still savoring the mozzarella and I thought it a conflict of interest.

They used to own the Hillside Seafood House on Liberty Avenue from 1961 to 1995. I lived in Newark way back and deep in memory banks, remember it. Michael called me back to show me trays of freshly prepared stuffed peppers before and after baking. I thought fleetingly that I could really get into being a food journalist.

Marino’s was a perfectly appointed quaint restaurant and place of exquisite real food. Hint, if you folks are floating around Springfield. Life is people, relationships and loyalty. When I said goodbye to Linda, we hugged and kissed. I’ve known her and Michael for decades within that precious hour. I like this happenstance stuff. To be continued.

 

Marino’s Fine Foods

Address: 905 Mountain Ave, Springfield Township, NJ 07081

Phone: (973) 258-9009

At The Vineyard Show Hawk Haven Winery – [VIDEO] At The Vineyard Show Hawk Haven Winery – [VIDEO](0)


At the Vineyard is a television series presented by the Garden State Wine Growers Association. In this edition, Tom Cosentino visits Hawk Haven Vineyard & Winery in Cape May where he sits down with owner and winemaker Todd Wuerker.
Thanks to Todd and Kenna Wuerker and their team at Hawk Haven Vineyards & Winery
The production team at NJ Discover
New Jersey Department of Agriculture
New Jersey Department of State, Division of Travel & Tourism
And, New Jersey wine enthusiasts!
www.newjerseywines.com
www.njdiscover.com

Monroeville Winery Salem County Vignette [Video] Monroeville Winery Salem County Vignette [Video](0)

Explore Salem County, NJ and visit Monroeville Vineyard & Winery and the Salem Historical Society Museum in the Garden State Wine Growers Association’s new Passport Series Tourism Vignette.

COMEDIAN MIKE MARINO: ‘Up Close and Personal’ Concert July 29th Paramount Asbury Park   by Calvin Schwartz COMEDIAN MIKE MARINO: ‘Up Close and Personal’ Concert July 29th Paramount Asbury Park by Calvin Schwartz(0)

COMEDIAN MIKE MARINO: ‘Up Close and Personal’ Concert July 29th Paramount Asbury Park by Calvin Schwartz

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mike Marino is coming back home to New Jersey and Asbury Park’s Paramount Theater on July 29th for ‘Up Close and Personal;’ a special backstage event with limited seating. But imagine being a few rows away from Mike and his incisive hysterical humor. The intimacy with Mike right there almost in your face like he’s in your den with a wet bar nearby, is priceless. Therefore, not to be missed. What could be better than the Jersey Shore, Asbury Park, Paramount, smell of ocean air, a myriad of food places to discover and the Bad Boy of Comedy; indeed, a mid-summer night’s dream. Thanks for coming home Mike.

 

 

 

I’ve been a huge fan of Mike Marino for the last four years since I first met him at the Asbury Park Comedy Festival.  Why not; I love to laugh for 90 minutes straight each and every time I see him; it’s this stressful world we live in. Mike has a unique handle, a release and grasp of our world.

The genius of Marino’s humor is to take our modern (expletive omitted) lives and shove it under a comedic microscope.  And when you see him in concert, you get a chance to see the ‘Marino’ face; how he loves to laugh with the audience at his own humor; that genuineness and warmth draws us in and embraces. Even more than that, my being a comedic snob, countless times looking at Mike on stage, I can’t help but see Jack Benny, who had one of the greatest comedic facial expressions as well as incredible timing. Benny was Johnny Carson’s all-time favorite; Mike Marino’s expressions and timing is right there with Jack Benny.  Remember his concerts are a comedic happening especially when he’s back home in front of a Jersey audience.

Calvin Schwartz  6-20-17  4:44PM

 

A PORTION OF THE PROCEEDS BENEFIT HOMETOWN HEROES   

 

Mike Marino’s Official BIO:

 

Mike Marino – affectionately known to thousands of his fans as New Jersey’s Bad Boy – is one of the most unique comics of our time. He has performed in every major comedy club from New York to Los Angeles including: The MGM Grand, Catch a Rising Star, The Comic Strip, Stand Up NY, The Improv, Rascals and The Icehouse. Mike, who has worked with some of the biggest names in the business, can be seen nightly as a top headliner at both the world famous Laugh Factory and The Comedy Store in Hollywood.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mike was born in Jersey City, New Jersey. He entered the world of theatre at an early age, and is a graduate of the prestigious American Academy of Dramatic Arts. Mike has appeared in over 200 national television commercials, and has received a Best Actor Clio Award Nomination. He has acted in many Prime Time soaps and television shows including: As the World Turns, One Life to Live, Becker, Nikki, Frasier and Party of Five. His film credits include Crooks, Pizza with Bullets, Hangin’ in Hedo and Steven King’s Lucky Quarter.

 

 

MIKE’S CONTACT INFO

Website:    http://www.mikemarino.net

http://www.myspace.com/getthebat                                                                                                                                                                                  

http://www.twitter.com/mikedmarino

http://www.youtube.com/mikedmarino

Email:    mikedmarino@facebook.com

 

 

 

 

ROCK STAR CLOTHING INC.COM

 

 

 

 

 

 

  RAY CATENA.COM

 

 

 

 

SURVEILLANCE 24       SURVEILLANCE 24

 

Carmine’s Pizza Factory

366 8th Street (Brunswick St. & 8th St.)

CARMINESPIZZAFACTORYJC.COM

 

COMPUTECHSUPPORT.NET

 

 

 

PUNZONE.COM    

 

 

 

 

 

ALSO MIKE MARINO CONTINUES HIS JERSEY SHORE APPEARANCES on AUG 7 at 8:30  PM 

 

 

201 Engleside Avenue

Beach Haven, NJ 08008

609-492-9477        https://www.surflight.org/

 

 

 

SPECIAL COMING ATTRACTION: FAMILY FUN NIGHT at Academy of Music & Dance in Spotswood, NJ June 25  by Calvin Schwartz SPECIAL COMING ATTRACTION: FAMILY FUN NIGHT at Academy of Music & Dance in Spotswood, NJ June 25 by Calvin Schwartz(0)

SPECIAL COMING ATTRACTION: FAMILY FUN NIGHT at Academy of Music & Dance in Spotswood, NJ June 25  by Calvin Schwartz

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

INTRODUCING YOUR HOSTS:  multi-media artist Mia (Maria) Savarese:   

MiaArtOnline.com

https://www.facebook.com/mariasavarese.miaart

Maria Savarese is a perfect spotlight personality. In our early days of friendship, strictly digital and fortified by our posts on Facebook walls, I began to notice her unique aura and zest for life. Her art intrigued. Exact chronology escapes me but after months of absorbing her art, suddenly one morning, we were talking on the phone; a logical inevitable extension of the phenomenon of Facebook friending.

And more logical extensions; one morning Maria, Tara-Jean  (my co-host at NJ Discover) and I were sitting at a diner in East Brunswick, coffee still steaming and eggs cooling, as our conversation took us deeply into Maria’s world of art and being a breast cancer survivor and how we could share her story; a perfect depiction of Jersey Strong.

Several times during our interview, she said, “a child is living inside me.” I understood that it was energy, spirit and exuberance (and a hint of innocence) reflected in her art which surrounded me. I reminded her about a Facebook picture of herself standing on a fallen tree perhaps 40 feet above a ravine and asked if she was scared. “Not at all; it was fun. It’s life.” Then she said, “to beat cancer is a gift. And I live my life now with that gift.”

Now she is directing her unlimited energies to helping co-ordinate Family Fun Night at Spotswood Academy of Music and Dance, with offerings of her art and jewelry creations, music, Christine Barath, psychic and medium, face painting, art and clay, mani/pedis, singing, food, games; an all-around fun night to kick off the summer season.  The night, in part is brought to you by The Academy of Music and Dance, Mozarts and Einsteins, a Preschool of Integrated Arts and Academics, LA Perfection Nails in Spotswood, Country Roads Day Camp, Top Ballers Athletics and Parties by Dylan & Company specializing in entertaining young children with music and Kumon Math and Reading Center of Spotswood.

At FUN NIGHT, Rock and Roll over to the Mia Art Activity Room to explore Mixed Media Art. Artists of all ages and skill levels, get ready to think outside the box to create one of a kind music themed pieces! (Some items will require pickup the next day, as we will be using glues, paints and clay).

CALVIN SCHWARTZ for NJ DISCOVER

FUN NIGHT SPONSORS   NOTE EACH SPONSOR WILL BE DONATING A RAFFLE PRIZE!!

Academy of Music and Dance is celebrating 25 years serving the communities of Spotswood, East Brunswick, Monroe and surrounding areas.  Specializing in all instruments (piano, guitar, violin, etc.) voice, musical theater, early childhood piano classes, rock bands and dance classes, they welcome students of all levels of ability and talent; from beginners to advanced.   Lessons and classes are offered weekday afternoons and evenings, and Saturday mornings and afternoons. Parents love saving time in their busy week coordinating lessons on multiple instruments and dance classes for all family members at the same time.  Located at 404 Main Street, Suite C in Spotswood.  (732) 251-3050 http://musicanddancenj.com/

The Academy is hosting the event and activities such as Dance! Dance! Dance!  and Name That Tune Escape Room.

 

 

 

Mozarts and Einsteins, a Preschool of Integrated Arts and Academics:  Dance,  Sing.  Play.  Laugh.  Learn.   Enrolling Infants/Toddlers, Ages 2 – 6, Full Day Kindergarten and Aftercare of the Arts (Grades 1st – 5th).  Now Enrolling for the 2017/18 School Year. http://www.mande-jamesburg.com/ 175 Gatzmer Avenue in Jamesburg, NJ.  (732) 521-2400

 

 

 

 

 

 

At LA Perfection Nails, you can get manicures, pedicures and waxing.  Walk-ins always welcome.  They offer a relaxing and rejuvenating experience that you will want again and again.  http://www.laperfectionnailsspotswood.com/  404 Main St, Ste B Spotswood, NJ 08884- (732) 251 – 8484 or (732) 251 – 8585

LA Perfection Nails in Spotswood will be open for additional hours just for Family Fun Night!  Come in for a mani/pedis!  There will be Face Painting available for the kids!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Parties by Dylan & Company specializes in entertaining young children with music!  Great for baby’s first birthday, toddler parties, holiday entertainment, preschool events and more.  They come to you for an hour of interactive and engaging activities.  Their Biggest Fans are Under Five!  www.PartiesByDylan.com (732) 536-0404

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Christine Barath     http://christinebarath.com/

Psychic/ Evidential Medium / tarot / Trance

A psychic reading I will use the cards. A mediumship read we will connect you with your loved ones in spirit …. I can also go into trance, after your medium read , your loved one, I will go into trance they will guide me to make you a gift of pottery

 

 

 

 

 

 

Country Roads, situated on a beautifully shaded, 26-acre campus is a quality premiere camp that has also stayed affordable for our generations of campers. This is a personal commitment we make to our camp families…to provide the best summer vacation a child can experience at the best possible price.

New campers are just friends we haven’t met yet!!  Call us today and start your Country Roads experience…become a Country Roader!

Country Roads Day Camp    139 Pinebrook Road   Manalapan, NJ 07726   732-446-4100 countryroadsdaycamp.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Heritage Winery – At The Vineyard Show Episode 2 Heritage Winery – At The Vineyard Show Episode 2(0)

Heritage Winery – At The Vineyard Show Episode 2

JUNE 12th NJ DISCOVER LIVE TV SHOW:   JACKIE ATKINS, NJ Boxing Hall of Fame, CRYSTAL WOODS, American Natural Bodybuilding Federation; “World Class Women Athletes Where You Least Expect Them BUT Life Journeys MORE Amazing” with co-hosts Tara-Jean and Calvin.   TUNE IN!! JUNE 12th NJ DISCOVER LIVE TV SHOW: JACKIE ATKINS, NJ Boxing Hall of Fame, CRYSTAL WOODS, American Natural Bodybuilding Federation; “World Class Women Athletes Where You Least Expect Them BUT Life Journeys MORE Amazing” with co-hosts Tara-Jean and Calvin. TUNE IN!!(0)

JUNE 12 th NJ DISCOVER LIVE TV SHOW: JACKIE ATKINS, NJ Boxing Hall of Fame, CRYSTAL WOODS, American Natural Bodybuilding Federation; “World Class Women Athletes Where You Least Expect Them BUT  Life Journeys MORE Amazing” with co-hosts Tara-Jean and Calvin. TUNE IN!!

 

 

 

TUNE IN MONDAY JUNE 12th   8 pm at    njdiscover.com        ALSO SEEN REBROADCAST  on YOU TUBE TV, LONG BRANCH COMMUNITY ACCESS TV                                                       CHANNEL 20, RUTGERS UNIVERSITY TV, MONMOUTH COUNTY CABLEVISION CHANNEL 77, MONMOUTH COUNTY FIOS CHANNEL 44, OLD BRIDGE TV CHANNEL 15, FIOS CHANNEL 22

HOW THE SHOW EVOLVED:

 

We’ve been doing our NJ Discover TV Show for three years. Each show has an origin, etiology, evolution but I never took the time to discuss in the promo article (which this is) how each show began and came together. But I must do it now; as I squint in the silvery light of the moon, stars and a passing asteroid in a perfect celestial benign alignment. Indeed, this show was meant to be with its provocative title, content and most importantly, special guests.

Last November I attended a comedy show at the Headliner Night Club produced by Matt Swartz. In between sets, he introduced me to his friend, Jackie Atkins and mentioned that she was in the New Jersey Boxing Hall of Fame. Being a consummate groupie, Jackie and I did a photo op. Her place in New Jersey history resonated with me for months, sensing she was ‘someone’ that would find a place at NJ Discover, after all, our mantra is to elevate and promulgate people and places of New Jersey. The notion of Jackie Atkins then resided in one of my cerebral storage units.

A month ago I received a Facebook message from Crystal Woods mentioning to me that she got my name from Tim Lucas, artist, also known as Dr. Sketchy. Crystal was looking for media coverage for an important American Natural Bodybuilding Federation event in September in Springfield.  She had asked Tim if he knew any good central Jersey journalists. The names of Tara-Jean and Calvin Schwartz surfaced. Before responding to Crystal, I did some googling and Facebook research and to my amazement, I discovered how accomplished she is in bodybuilding. A few days later, we spoke and the bright bulb went off and I retrieved memory bits about Jackie and asked Crystal if she was interested in being a guest on NJ Discover LIVE.  It happened right there on the spot. The alignment began.

Crystal was excited and aboard; so was Jackie a few days later. But it wasn’t until Tara-Jean and I went to visit Jackie at her Gleason’s gym, in Long Branch, that her incredible life’s journey crystallized. Tara-Jean and I looked at each other and we realized even more important than Jackie’s athletic prowess was her life’s meaning and accomplishment; certainly the ingredient of great television content. More celestial alignment followed when we went to see Crystal at Gold Medal Gym in Garwood. Almost Déjà vu  for us, as Crystal shared her life; a brave, dedicated and difficult journey. Their stories will make for hugely unique television; far from the mundane and easily the stuff they make bio-movies about. You’ll just have to tune in on Monday June 12th, and test my credibility and veracity. These are two amazing women.    CALVIN SCHWARTZ   May 27, 2017   11:11 PM

TUNE IN MONDAY JUNE 12th   8 pm at    njdiscover.com        ALSO SEEN REBROADCAST  on YOU TUBE TV, LONG BRANCH COMMUNITY ACCESS TV                                                       CHANNEL 20, RUTGERS UNIVERSITY TV, MONMOUTH COUNTY CABLEVISION CHANNEL 77, MONMOUTH COUNTY FIOS CHANNEL 44, OLD BRIDGE TV CHANNEL 15, FIOS CHANNEL 22

MEET OUR GUESTS: BIO TIME

JACKLYN MICHELLE ATKINS (JACKIE ATKINS)     

SPECIAL LINK FOR JACKIE:

NJ Give a Kid a Dream site

www.njgakad.com

 

Jacklyn Michelle Atkins, also known as “Coach Jackie” is a native “Jersey Girl”, born in Monmouth Medical, Long Branch, NJ and residing now in Neptune, NJ. Jacklyn Atkins graduated from Red Bank Catholic High School. It was here that she began to excel as an accomplished athlete, competing in gymnastics, track and field and martial arts. Her accomplishments in track and field earned her notoriety, scholarships and an induction into the NJ Track & Field Hall of Fame. Jackie set records in the 440 yard dash in both regional and national competitions. She also anchored the championship RBC mile relay team at the Penn Relays.

In addition to her loving parents, Grace & Joseph Atkins, her track coach, Jack Rafter played an important role in her developmental years. Rafter taught the fundamentals of elite training, hard work, dedication and removing all obstacles as his training ethic and rules for living. Jackie’s coaching style is modeled after Rafter’s teaching and she recites many of his mottos during training sessions with the youth attending her gym.

 

 

Jackie attended North Carolina State University& CUNY and pursued her Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science. In 1982 she began her career in Software Development.  During her professional career, Jackie always found time to volunteer teaching young athletes fitness, boxing and martial arts. In June 2012, Jackie retired after 28+ years of service from AT&T Bell Labs/Avaya as Executive Director of Research & Development. In her executive role, Jackie led global teams developing computer telephony software. Her team developed the first CTI application deployed in thousands of call center operations.

Jacklyn then stepped out on faith and pursued her passion – elevating & educating youth in boxing and in life.  Jackie revived the Long Branch PAL Boxing program and introduced life skills and youth martial arts to the curriculum. Jackie partnered with Bruce Silverglade of Gleason’s Gym Brooklyn, to birth Gleason’s Gym Jersey Shore in Long Branch, NJ and Gleason’s boxing at the Mercedes Club in Manhattan. Atkins continues to house the PAL program in support of the community of Long Branch and has partnered with Long Branch Police department and Youth Services to serve at-risk youth. She recently birthed the New Jersey Give a Kid a Dream Program (NJGAKAD).  The GAKAD program (www.njgakad.com) leverages the focus and discipline of boxing to engage at risk youth while supporting them with the challenges they face in today’s society. Jackie’s goal is for the youth to become CHAMPIONS of life… living a healthy, productive lifestyle inside and outside of the ring. As she has been given the opportunity to live life abundantly and achieve her goals, she truly believes every youth deserves the same chance…. Jackie fell in love with the sweet science during her teenage years while training at the Red Bank Police Athletic League.  Her accomplishments in boxing and martial arts earned her the Women’s 152 lb. National Golden Gloves title, Ringside World Champion at 141 and 152 weight classes and Women’s 2004 NJ Kickboxing Amateur champion. Atkins retired from kickboxing competition undefeated after earning her black belt in Shodokan, training and elevating with Grandmaster Bill “Superfoot” Wallace.

Jackie paved the way for women to compete in boxing at the United States Military Academy at West Point. She coached the newly formed team for two years, winning the first USIBA National Collegiate Championships in April 2012. In her first year at West Point, the team won the team title in addition to winning 4 National Gold medals, 4 National Silver Medals and one bronze medal. In Atkins’ second year coaching the team, the West Point Women’s Boxing team repeated their prior year performance, winning the 2014 USIBA National Collegiate team championship and bringing home 4 Gold Medals, 3 Silver and 1 Bronze. Atkins traveled with the New Jersey State Championship team to the USA Nationals in 2011 and 2012 bringing home Gold, Silver and Bronze.

As head coach, Atkins’ led the Long Branch Boxing team to victory claiming the 2012 female 141 lb. Golden Glove Championship, three 2012 New Jersey State Championships, three 2012 NJ Diamond Glove Champions, two 2013 NJ State Champions & New Jersey Diamond Glove Champions titles and in 2014, winning the gold in the novice 123 lb. weight class NJ Diamond Glove & New Jersey State Championships.

Coach Jackie was recently elected to the position of President for the NJ Association of USA boxing, after serving two terms on the Executive Board.  In 2014, Coach Jackie was inducted into the New Jersey Boxing Hall of Fame as Coach of the year. She is a nationally certified personal trainer, AIBA Star 1 Internationally accredited boxing coach, USA Boxing level 3 official and NJ State Athletic Board Inspector. Jackie recently completed Krav Maga International Instructor training certification in Tel Aviv, Israel in July 2014.

Jackie serves as President of the Lay Organization at Allen Chapel AME Church. She is the proud mother of two lovely daughters, Tynaya and Sade. Both girls have been very supportive of their mother and the many youths she has embraced over the years.

 

TUNE IN MONDAY JUNE 12th   8 pm at    njdiscover.com        ALSO SEEN REBROADCAST  on YOU TUBE TV, LONG BRANCH COMMUNITY ACCESS TV                                                       CHANNEL 20, RUTGERS UNIVERSITY TV, MONMOUTH COUNTY CABLEVISION CHANNEL 77, MONMOUTH COUNTY FIOS CHANNEL 44, OLD BRIDGE TV CHANNEL 15, FIOS CHANNEL 22

CRYSTAL WOODS:      

 

 

 

I am a 42-year-old mother of two (ages 21 & 24) working full time as an RDA/CDA in private practice specializing in pediatrics and specials needs for the last 15 years and currently studying for my NSCA CPT.  When I’m not at work I spend my time helping others reach their fitness goals both for health and stage as a posing coach and co-owner of Team Synergy and Science.

If you had asked me 5 years ago if I could imagine myself happily engrossed in a fit lifestyle I would have laughed. I was very sedentary in my lifestyle, work, home, and the occasional event. I was very much a homebody just uncomfortable with myself and life. Now I can’t imagine life any other way, I have more confidence than I ever did not just with my outward appearance, but in my abilities. Touching other people’s lives, educating and helping them to live better fills my heart and lets me know I found my purpose in life.

In 2012 I decided to quit smoking, disgusted with what I was doing to my health and the way my hair, car, and clothes smelled I quit cold turkey. In an effort to stay focused and not relapse as well as gain more weight as a result of quitting I joined a gym. I had been active as a kid, playing sports and as a young adult chasing after two small children, but a gym was something new to me and I admit intimidating. I started out on the cardio equipment, but wanted something challenging and I was hungry to learn. I started asking the manager/ head trainer questions that he was very happy to answer and excited that a woman was interested in weight lifting. I began to train six days a week, getting stronger and more confident in my ability. At 5″2 and 127 pounds my trainer saw potential as a competitor and after much contemplation I decided to enter my first figure competition, but first I had to focus on training and nutrition.

In September of 2012 after 8 months of hard training, quality nutrition (macros, iifym) and almost 30 pounds I took the stage and won my first figure competition.

Over the last five years I have competed in 20 stage competitions earning my figure and bikini procards in multiple organizations, and when in the off season I like to compete in powerlifting in the 114 weight class (NJ State powerlifting record holder with the USAPL and WNPF) . As a way to give back to an amazing sport I sit on the board of the ANBF (American Natural Bodybuilding Federation) and frequently judge for multiple organizations.

Its more than just competing, it’s the camaraderie in the gym, the support backstage, the community of likeminded people pushing one another to their best.

My nutrition is balanced for my goals as well as my mental health. I follow iifym (if it fits in your macros) adjusting choices depending whether I am in prep for a competition or off season trying to gain muscle.

I have no food allergies so there is no food group that I cut out of my diet and with a good metabolism even in my lowest deficit I am still able to enjoy most anything.

I always start my meals with a protein (chicken breast, ground turkey, lean steak, lean ground beef) and build my meals around that adding in carbs and fats. A typical day in prep looks like the following.

  1. 1 whole egg, 1 egg white on a flatbread
  2. Greek yogurt
  3. Salad with cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, ground turkey, fat free Italian dressing
  4. Cottage cheese and blackberries
  5. Roasted red pepper Quinoa and lean ground beef
  6. Banana
  7. Turkey pepperoni, low fat sharp cheddar
  8. English muffin with peanut butter
  9. Gallon of water daily

 

 

Tracking my macros and following iifym allows me variety, flexibility, and more importantly allows me to still be able to enjoy time with family and friends for special occasions or at an event. As the saying goes “give a man a fish you feed him for a day, teach him how to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.” After finding a fit lifestyle I now know how to eat for life not just for a moment.

When I am in my off-season the goal shifts from leaning out to giving the body a rest from being in a deficit and to gain muscle. This also provides a much needed mental break from the rigors of competition and constantly tracking to a laxer nutrition regimen. Preparing my food daily does not change and quality foods are still a must, however, what changes is the constant weighing of food gives way to eyeballing and if I fancy a small slice of cake at a party I allow myself the indulgence. The key is to find that ideal off-season weight, eating slightly above maintenance in conjunction with a good strength training program.

 

Three tips for newbies:

  1. Patience- there is a learning curve to meal prepping in the beginning, especially if you’re tracking macros, as with anything you will get better and quicker with practice.
  2. Variety- three benefits
  3. Vital nutrients you would otherwise miss
  4. Maintaining a good relationship with food.
  5. Allows better adherence for long term lifestyle goals.
  6. Preplan – The most time-consuming part of meal prep is protein. Have multiple protein sources pre-cooked for the week making each day quicker and easier.

Top 3 tips for losing weight:

  1. Constancy is the key to success, in your training and nutrition.
  2. Follow a good strength training program, building muscle increases metabolism.
  3. A caloric deficit is required to lose weight, as you reduce calories you may have a moment of weakness and indulge. Being human is ok, but don’t let that one indulgence derails your mindset. You can recover from a splurge by getting right back to it. Stay the course and you will succeed.

We don’t all start our journeys from the same place and our reasons for beginning are all different. Remember to always enjoy the process of learning and changing and never compare your journey to another person. This is an amazing life and living fit allows us to extend it to the fullest with quality.

TUNE IN MONDAY JUNE 12th   8 pm at    njdiscover.com        ALSO SEEN REBROADCAST  on YOU TUBE TV, LONG BRANCH COMMUNITY ACCESS TV                                                       CHANNEL 20, RUTGERS UNIVERSITY TV, MONMOUTH COUNTY CABLEVISION CHANNEL 77, MONMOUTH COUNTY FIOS CHANNEL 44, OLD BRIDGE TV CHANNEL 15, FIOS CHANNEL 22

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

NJ DISCOVER SPECIAL COMING ATTRACTION: Artist Mia Savarese is “Finding the Music: Mixed Media Art & Multi-Sensory Experience” June 3rd 7-9PM  by Calvin Schwartz NJ DISCOVER SPECIAL COMING ATTRACTION: Artist Mia Savarese is “Finding the Music: Mixed Media Art & Multi-Sensory Experience” June 3rd 7-9PM by Calvin Schwartz(0)

NJ DISCOVER SPECIAL COMING ATTRACTION: Artist Mia Savarese is “Finding the Music: Mixed Media Art & Multi-Sensory Experience” June 3rd 7-9PM  by Calvin Schwartz

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s not often these days of multitude event bombardment in central Jersey, that I take to basically urging folks to partake of a special event but here we go. We’ve got Mia (also known as Maria) Savarese, a single mother, passionate artist, jewelry creator and breast cancer survivor in an evening of her introspective earthy emotional art on display while simultaneously being infused with parallel universe music. And for added inducement, there’s a display of her imaginative jewelry (which is available to purchase). And this is a LOCAL show at nearby Academy of Music and Dance in  Spotswood, New Jersey.

And why my exuberance with this evening of art and Mia Savarese? Perhaps read excerpts from my NJ Discover interview with Mia (Maria) from January, 2014. I’m about to light your fire as mine was a few years ago.

Calvin Schwartz  May 23, 2017  11:11PM

 

 

JERSEY STRONG: MEET MARIA (MIA) SAVARESE:  MOTHER, ARTIST, AND CANCER SURVIVOR.    By Calvin Schwartz    January 5, 2014     

 

 

So where did I meet Maria Savarese?  At a local college art museum or bookstore on Route 18 or at a trendy Wi-Fi equipped coffee shop a few miles away from the bookstore? Actually we met on Facebook through the synchronicity and exigencies of social media; we probably had some of the same friends or perhaps Facebook nudged or poked one of us to friend the other. Well it happened; we friended and discovered; I like using the word ‘discover’ after all I write for NJ Discover.

And there was Maria’s Facebook picture wall replete with her essence as a modern artist, young mother and breast cancer survivor.     Maria Savarese is a perfect spotlight personality. In our early days of friendship, strictly digital and fortified by our posts on Facebook walls, I began to notice her unique aura and zest for life. Her art intrigued. Exact chronology escapes me but after months of absorbing her art, suddenly one morning, we were talking on the phone; a logical inevitable extension of the phenomenon of Facebook friending.

And more logical extensions; one morning Maria, Tara-Jean  (my co-host at NJ Discover) and I were sitting at a diner in East Brunswick, coffee still steaming and eggs cooling, as our conversation took us deeply into Maria’s world of art and being a breast cancer survivor and how we could share her story; a perfect depiction of Jersey Strong.

 

 

Then a few months ago, I visited her studio just as an autumn chill was heralding Halloween. She mostly grew up in Old Bridge and lives in Spotswood now where her studio is located. Actually the studio is a converted detached garage. When she first saw the hundred-year-old property, weeds had overgrown everything but she sensed it was all perfect just as she heard a woman playing a guitar on the other side of bushes and vines; their young daughters would become friends.

Several times during our interview, she said, “a child is living inside me.” I understood that it was energy, spirit and exuberance (and a hint of innocence) reflected in her art which surrounded me. I reminded her about a Facebook picture of herself standing on a fallen tree perhaps 40 feet above a ravine and asked if she was scared. “Not at all; it was fun. It’s life.” Then she said, “to beat cancer is a gift. And I live my life now with that gift.”

 

 

 

She was originally from Flushing, Queens and took art lessons when she was eight and tried being a gymnast. “My hands always had to be busy so I made a lot of doll’s clothes. And I always see something inherent in things.”  Then I said, “I can easily see this energy inside you.” She added, “I made my prom dress in high school after I took sewing. It’s still hanging in my closet.”

Cut to adult times. Maria got a job working at the Flemington Craft Festival. “They helped me make jewelry, work with clay and ceramics. When I was at Brookdale College, I also learned pottery. And this summer I finally got my kiln.” Her smile is magic and effusive as she pointed, “my grandmother’s chest of draws is over there.” I commented on the vast array of materials and props in her studio.

“Everything has a purpose. We should stop throwing things away. I’m like an environmental artist. I use things from the environment in my art which means I love to work in collages and mixed media.” Art drives her. She loves to bring families together, help children and make the world a better place. That certain smile persisted throughout our interview. Maria talks about her daughter with more than pride; with amazement as her daughter reads and writes incessantly. “Emma is growing up.”

 

 

Again her smile warmed the studio. I asked about her environmentalism. “I don’t use pesticides in my garden and love the Native American way of life.” Her work has appeared in an art exhibition in New Brunswick and in other galleries and has sold fast. A deep breath followed; a smile changed to introspection. “The main thing going forward for me is I’m looking for my art partner and looking for something different. And people are now finding me and my art.”

I asked Maria what inspires; “Teaching, communicating, being in the moment when something triggers an idea. Working with senior citizens and young children,” “And what about your art goals?” “I would love my art to be understood and appreciated and for it to be in more current shows. It’s not about money but about being who you are and not afraid.”

It was a good time to ask who her life’s heroes are. “Ellen Degeneres; she represents strength, inspiration, life and change for so many people. Then she makes you smile and laugh as well.”  My thought process told me that’s exactly what Maria Savarese does to people in her world; provide strength and inspiration. Kind of like a complete circle and a good place to shut off my reporter’s microphone/recorder.

MIA CONTACT INFO:  Facebook Event Page:  https://www.facebook.com/events/228421484313059/

Maria Savarese (Mia) Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/mariasavarese.miaart

Mia Art Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MiaArtOnlineStore/?pnref=story.unseen-section

NJ DISCOVER  January 2014 article:  http://bit.ly/19NM4l5

NJ DISCOVER LIVE TV SHOW “A NIGHT IN THE ART GALLERY” featuring Mia Savarese  YOU TUBE LINK:  http://bit.ly/2qU1C3j

 

At The Vineyard Show, Four Sisters Winery – Tutorial At The Vineyard Show, Four Sisters Winery – Tutorial(0)

New Jersey wines are being recognized nationally for their excellence in renowned wine competitions and the industry has seen tremendous growth with over 50 licensed wineries now operating in the state. The Garden State Wine Growers Association’s (GSWGA) ongoing mission has been to increase the awareness, appreciation and quality of wines produced in New Jersey.  The At the Vineyards YouTube show puts the spotlight on vineyards throughout the state and allows consumers to see how each visit to a winery provides a unique experience.  Join us as we profile individual winemakers and owners at vineyards across New Jersey.  Join us and explore New Jersey Wine Country with the At the Vineyards Show.

The At the Vineyards series is funded through  a USDA Crop Grant and by the Garden State Wine Growers Association.

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