Category: Allentown

The National Weather Service Reports Wintry Tuesday for New Jersey

November 28, 2023

TRENTON – ROBBINSVILLE – ALLENTOWN, NJ — The National Weather Service forecast states a chance of snow showers between 2:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m. Partly sunny, with a high near 37F. Breezy, with a west wind of 15 to 20 mph, with gusts as high as 35 mph. The chance of precipitation is 30%. Little or no snow accumulation expected.

Tonight, will be mostly clear, with a low around 22F. West wind 10 to 15 mph, with gusts as high as 25 mph.

Snow falls in the Allentown – Robbinsville, New Jersey area the moring of November 28, 2023

Good morning! The cold air has arrived and some flakes of snow may soon follow! It will be a blustery day with highs mostly in the 30s but winds gusting 25 to 35 mph making it feel a good 10-15 degrees colder. Also, lake effect flurries and snow showers have been ongoing across portions of central and western PA and as we head into the day today, some of these are likely to make it into eastern PA beginning this morning. It’s even possible some of these could briefly be on the heavier side especially across portions of Chester County north through the Lehigh Valley into the southern Poconos. Be alert for rapidly changing visibility and slippery roads!

Allentown FFA Reports On Summer Activities

September 12, 2023

ALLENTOWN, NJ (MONMOUTH)–Allentown FFA reported the following activities over the summer:


We had our annual June chapter meeting and cookout on June 7 to finish out the school year.
We made the most of what we could amidst the smoke from the Canadian Wildfires. There were
lots of fun games like inside kickball and shop cornhole. We introduced the new leadership team
of the Allentown FFA. We were also incredibly grateful to our alumni for coming back and helping
make food for everyone. Overall, it was a fantastic way to kick off summer vacation.

The leadership team hit the ground running with POW (Performance Objective
Workshop)-WOW. The first of many leadership training courses for officers. There was lots of planning
for the year, as well as team-building activities to bring the leadership team together.


Monmouth County Fair Produce

The Monmouth County Fair was held July 26-29, 2023. Members and alumni from the chapter
worked with the other Monmouth County FFA chapters at the FFA Produce stand. This event
helps raise for all chapters funds to help support travel and other expenses throughout the year.
Safe Tractor Operator Career Development Event (CDE)

During the summer, the Allentown FFA sent two contestants to the Burlington County Farm Fair
to participate in the Safe Tractor Operation contest. During the contest, the members had to
safely back up a four-wheeled wagon and a two-wheel trailer. They also had to operate a skid
steer to carry a bucket of water and the contestants also had to operate a front-end loader.

Meat Evaluation & Technology Career Development Event

During the summer, the chapter sent a team of 4 individuals to participate in the Meat
Evaluation & Technology CDE held in Jacksonville NJ. Participants in the competition delve into
the science of meat. During this team event, students evaluate beef carcasses for quality and
yield grade; identify various meat cuts and place carcasses; and identify wholesale and/or retail
cuts. The team placed 2nd overall!!


Canoe Trip

The newly elected leadership team participated in a canoe trip down the Wading River to work
on getting to know each other, learn to work together, and have fun! There were lots of good
memories from having lunch along the river and the advisors splashing everybody!!

9th-Grade Orientation

On August 29, the leadership team gave presentations and set up displays to show incoming
freshmen what the FFA was all about. We wanted to spark interest and introduce them to our
Agriculture program with its many opportunities.
Allentown Officer Leadership Training

To finish up our summer of planning and preparing, the leadership team stayed over at the
Allentown Presbyterian Church after Freshman orientation. We spent the day working with our
Committees to plan the year’s events. In addition, there were various team-building activities to
improve our teamwork. We ended the night with our sponsor’s dinner to communicate with our
sponsors and discuss ways to improve the chapter and better connect with the community!!

Traffic Alert County Road 539 Closed Near Allentown

July 21, 2023

UPPER FREEHOLD TOWNSHIP, NJ (MONMOUTH)–Around 3:15 firefighters from Hope Fire Company/Upper Freehold Township and Captial Health EMS responded to County Road 539-Allentown Davis Station between High Street and Walnford Road. Upon arrival it was found a vehicle hit a pole and wires were down on the roadway. The roadway from County Road 539 by the Cream Ridge Golf Course to Main Street Allentown will be closed until repairs are made.

Seek alternate routes use Route 526 Bypass to County Road 526 to Sharon Station Road to County Road 539.

Currently Google Maps shows a 1/2-mile traffic delay in the area.

Upper Freehold Township Firefighters reported that units currently operating at a Motor Vehicle Accident involving powerlines across the roadway. High Street to 539 will be shut down until further notice. Please use caution in the area and find an alternate route of travel.

Upper Freehold Township Professional Firefighters photo

Fight to save NJ’s Revolutionary War sites could gain strength from new grant program

July 14, 2023

By: Press Release, Assembly Republicans

TRENTON, N.J. – Assemblyman Alex Sauickie has introduced a measure that would create a grant program to save Revolutionary War sites under threat of development.

“New Jersey, which is known as the “Crossroads of the American Revolution,” played too pivotal a role in our nation’s fight for independence to put profits over preservation,” Sauickie (R-Ocean) said.

Because of New Jersey’s location between Philadelphia and New York, the state was the setting for more Revolutionary War battles and skirmishes than anywhere else.

“The fate of America was decided in several significant battles on New Jersey soil. Every effort must be made to preserve as much of that history as possible for future generations,” Sauickie continued. 

The site of a Revolutionary War skirmish in Allentown and Upper Freehold, which was critical in helping George Washington plan the Battle of Monmouth, could soon be home to two giant warehouses. Once an encampment of Redcoats, the 66 acres looks like it did in 1778, but developers who purchased it have plans to transform it into storage facilities with more than 100 loading docks for the hundreds of trucks that will come through.

As residents look for ways to save the site, Sauickie saw an opportunity to create a state grant program that would allow local governments and nonprofits to preserve Revolutionary War battlefields, encampments and skirmish sites in New Jersey. Under the proposal, the State Department would award grants to towns and organizations to save Revolutionary War sites that are endangered by development. 

“We are three short years away from celebrating our nation’s 250th birthday. To lose a part of our American Revolution history now to storage facilities that could be located elsewhere would be devastating,” Sauickie added. “Hoping that historical preservation prevails in this fight is not enough. We must support the people and towns that put in the work to save the sites and stories that make us Americans. This grant program is a way to bolster their tireless efforts.”

The bill (A5677) has been referred to the Assembly Tourism, Gaming and the Arts Committee.

“The fate of America was decided in several significant battles on New Jersey soil. Every effort must be made to preserve as much of that history as possible for future generations,” Assemblyman Alex Sauickie

The site of a Revolutionary War skirmish in Allentown and Upper Freehold, which was critical in helping George Washington plan the Battle of Monmouth, could soon be home to two giant warehouses. Once an encampment of Redcoats, the 66 acres looks like it did in 1778, but developers who purchased it have plans to transform it into storage facilities with more than 100 loading docks for the hundreds of trucks that will come through. file photos

2023 Allentown High School Senior Class Car Parade

June 16, 2023

ALLENTOWN, NJ (MONMOUTH)–Last evening June 15, the Allentown High School Class of 2023 held their Senior Class Car Parade though Allentown, Upper Freehold and Millstone Townships. The procession started in 2020 during the pandemic year when prom was canceled due to COVID-19. The tradition continues now in its fourth year. Members of the Hope Fire Company of Allentown/Upper Freehold Twp Firefighters and the Monmouth County Sherriff’s Office escorted the Senior Class Parade though the towns.

Photo gallery:

Allentown High School Alumni Hand Classmate Over to Authorities

Classes of the 1980s raise $10,000 in “bail money” for beloved alma mater.

June 15, 2023

By Lisa Neuman

ALLENTOWN, NJ (MONMOUTH)–On May 19, 2023, former Allentown High School student Scott Trethaway II turned himself in to Upper Freehold Township School District administration to serve one day of in-school suspension, district superintendent Mark Guterl reported.

Taken into custody by the Allentown Police Department and delivered to the school in the back of a patrol car, Trethaway looked contrite as high school principal Todd Pae recited the proclamation sealing his doom. The alleged suspect was then escorted into the school by retired English teacher Jane Samuelson, while current AHS students gathered at the front doors to boo him and record the arrest on their phones, presumably to make TikToks of the scene of public humiliation.

Trethaway, 52, had spent 35 years on the run from school administration. His crime? Mooning his fellow graduates and their families at his graduation ceremony–back on June 23, 1988.

Suspect’s past crimes come in handy for a cause

Catching Trethaway with his pants down, literally, was the late Douglas Van Dusen, then one of the assistant principals at AHS. Van Dusen, having barely tolerated four long years of Trethaway’s antics, sentenced the alleged suspect to serving one day of in-school suspension, affectionately known to students as “The Box.” But, because it was the last day of school, Trethaway went on the lam and never looked back until October 2022.

That’s when Trethaway’s high school football teammate, Thomas Falkowski, 52, was inducted into the AHS Hall of Fame. So many former classmates and teammates showed up to the homecoming game to see Falkowski, a member of the Class of 1989, receive his honor that they started brainstorming ideas for igniting a newfound sense of school spirit and pride. Trethaway and his leadership team got to work, building relationships with Guterl and Pae and planning a charity event that would be as fun as it was successful.

“Our alumni mean the world to us, and Mr. Trethaway has helped us reconnect with this growing group of dedicated Redbirds,” Superintendent Guterl said. “High school is always a special time for students, and the memories that everyone has of AHS seem to have created a lasting impact on the lives of our alums—there are few better compliments than that. We look forward to continuing our expanding relationship with the entire alumni community.”

For their part, these alumni—realizing they probably didn’t fully appreciate the high school while they were students—now found themselves deeply impressed with the academic and athletic programs, fine and dramatic arts, clubs, and other extracurricular programs AHS offers. In an era of deep budget cuts and financial constraints, they wanted to do their part to ensure the longevity of those programs for generations of students to come.

With Guterl and Pae’s help, an elaborate plan was hatched to apprehend Trethaway and ensure that he served his sentence. Bail money would be raised to spring him from the tiny classroom that for decades has housed many notorious high school criminals.

These alumni saved the AHS football team

Meanwhile, between October 2022 and May 2023, the newly established AHS 1980s Alumni Group grew to more than 850 members on Facebook. As a decade’s worth of classmates reconnected, swapped stories, recalled fond memories, shared old photos, and posted 80s-themed memes, they also raised the funds they would need to spring Trethaway from The Box and benefit AHS in the process.

This group of alumni are no strangers to reviving and revving up school spirit, however. As determined teenagers in the spring of 1986, they banded together to fight UFRSD’s school board when it attempted to dissolve the football team. Citing rising costs and a perpetually losing record, the board had recommended that canceling the program was the only prudent thing to do.

The student body disagreed wholeheartedly.

Outraged, brains, athletes, basket cases, princesses, and criminals joined forces and took their fight straight to the school board—and won. The managing editor’s op-ed in the Fall 1986 issue of The Nutshell, AHS’s student newspaper, read in part: “Once it was saved, it was up to us to prove the decision to keep football was the right one.”

Because their passion and commitment were a driving force in saving the football program from an unfortunate demise, they were elated when the 2010 team won its first division title.

But they were fully vindicated in 2016 when AHS won its first championship, the Central Jersey Group IV state sectional title, in a lopsided 41-6 victory over Brick Township High School. When the Allentown Police Department and Hope Fire Company Station 82-1, sirens blaring and lights flashing, escorted busses full of victorious football players, cheerleaders, and marching band members back into town after the game, the near-miss of the 1980s was suddenly just a memory.

But having had such an impact on AHS nearly 40 years ago wasn’t enough. Now, these alumni wanted to see how they could give back, and they wanted to give back big. So, on May 19, they turned Trethaway in, while still raising his “bail money” in the background.

It paid off. With Trethaway’s sentence served and his name cleared, on May 31 representatives of the alumni group handed Principal Pae and Superintendent Guterl a check for $10,000 and a promise of more to come.

“I can’t thank Mr. Trethaway and the alumni group enough for their generous donation of $10,000 that will benefit Allentown High School.” Guterl said. “When Scott approached us about the idea, it was definitely a unique one, but we could hear his energy and love for AHS come through. His ability to connect with alumni, his energy to make this happen, and his love for his alma mater definitely made this hope become a reality.”

Trethaway is now president of the group, which has already launched plans to apply for 501(c)(3) charitable non-profit status. The board of officers includes vice president Donna Erbe Creager (Class of 1989), treasurer Danalynn Marsh Byrne (Class of 1988), secretary Aaron Heller (Class of 1988), and steering committee Joshua Crome (Class of 1988), Stacey Frankel (Class of 1988), Brian Penrose (Class of 1988), and Nathan Wurtzel (Class of 1989).

“My vision for our future is to establish a 501(c)(3) charitable organization in order to support AHS programs and offer scholarships to current students who have excelled in academics, athletics, and the trades,” Trethaway announced to those gathered at the event’s afterparty, held at the Millstone Elks, the night he was sprung from The Box for good. “Our mission is simple: To support AHS students and programs by organizing fundraising and hosting events.”

“We have an amazing and diverse group of people with decades of experience and expertise in a multitude of areas and chosen fields,” he continued. “My goal is to establish a fun organization that is inclusive, involved, and succeeds through teamwork, something we can all be proud to be involved in.”

Officers from the AHS 80s Alumni Group present the $10,000 check they raised as bail money. L to R: Aaron Heller, Thomas Falkowski, Danalynn Byrne, AHS Principal Todd Pae, UFRSD Superintendent Mark Guterl.

Principal Todd Pae reads the proclamation announcing Trethaway’s capture and sentencing.

Retired English teacher Jane Samuelson poses with the suspect after turning him in to Superintendent Guterl and Principal Pae.

AHS football players in 1988, now in the 80s Alumni Group. Back row, L to R: Thomas Falkowski, Scott Trethaway, Brian Penrose. Front row, L to R: Brian Wangerien, Aaron Heller.

Allentown, NJ, Woman Charged in Fraudulent Mortgage Scheme

Secured $840k home with bogus documents

June 8, 2023

BORDENTOWN CITY, NJ (BURLINGTON)–Burlington County Prosecutor LaChia L. Bradshaw and Bordentown City Police Chief Shaun Lafferty announced that an Allentown, New Jersey woman has been charged with providing fraudulent documents to obtain a mortgage, and attempting to use a fraudulent $76,000 check to cover the closing costs of the real estate transaction.

Sydne Phillips, 32, was charged with two counts of Theft by Deception (Second Degree), Identity Crime – Impersonation (Second Degree) and two counts of Forgery (Third Degree).

She was taken into custody June 1 and lodged in the Atlantic County Justice Facility in Mays Landing pending a detention hearing in Superior Court. The case will be prepared for presentation to a grand jury for possible indictment.

The investigation began in January after a representative of a Bordentown City title company approached police with a fraudulent check in the amount of $76,652.79 that had been provided at closing by Phillips.

The investigation, which is continuing, revealed that the check was part of a scheme that allowed Phillips to secure a mortgage on an $840,000 house on Cannonball Court in Allentown, (UPPER FREEHOLD TOWNSHIP) New Jersey. She is also accused of forging multiple documents, using the identity of a relative, providing fraudulent tax income forms for that relative, and providing fraudulent bank account statements. She was taken into custody at the residence she is accused of illegally obtaining.

The investigation was conducted by the Prosecutor’s Office and the Bordentown City Police Department, with assistance from the United States Department of Veterans Affairs Office of Inspector General and the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office. The lead investigators are BCPD Detective Justin Lewandowski and BCPO Detective Michele Ragone.

Phillips is being prosecuted by Assistant Prosecutor Assistant Prosecutor Andrew R. McDonnell, supervisor of the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office Financial Crimes Unit.

All persons are considered innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.

Note: The Allentown mailing address provides service in parts of Upper Freehold Township.

Burlington Prosecutor’s Office Press Release

Sydne Phillips, 32, was charged with two counts of Theft by Deception (Second Degree), Identity Crime – Impersonation (Second Degree) and two counts of Forgery (Third Degree).

Allentown’s Underground Railroad Station

Robbins Sisters – 30 South Main Street, Allentown, NJ

June 8, 2023

By Thomas K. Robbins

ALLENTOWN, NJ (MONMOUTH)–The Allentown Messenger article published on March 3rd 1904 described a “certain house on Main Street, not now in existence, was once a “station” of the “underground railroad” whose purpose was to house men, women, and children on their journey north to freedom in Canada. Those helping would bring the escapees to the house during the night and conceal them the following day until nightfall, when they moved to the next station. When they reached a village near Perth Amboy, they would board a steamboat to New York.

The article also recounts a story by a witness to these events when she was a child and states: “She had been spending the day at the house referred to, and about dark had the occasion to go to the cellar while rendering assistance to one of the ladies. Passing through a through a door in a partition, there was found a partly furnished room, and at a table were six negroes eating their supper. She little knew at the time that the people before her were fugitive slaves, and it was not till years afterward that she learned that what had then been seen was one of the methods of operating the so called ‘underground railroad’ in the days of African slavery.”

A Messenger Press article published in 1918 told of the family residing in this house.  Under the headline “Some Interesting Local History”, the article described the old house as occupied by a “a Quaker family by the name Robbins. Included in the household were several daughters, the last survivor Aunt Sallie, a “maiden lady.”  The sisters knitted clothes for the refugees, since they were wearing rags when they arrived.

We can pinpoint the house using the description of houses from an Allentown Messenger article published on February 4th, 1904 that details who lived along Main Street in the 1830s.  The article states: “The old frame gristmill stood a little to the north of the present mill, and Henry Ford’s brick dwelling was occupied by Louis Steward, one of the heirs of the mill property. Where now is Dr. Johnson’s home was an old red house where lived the family of Mrs. Letitia Steward. Next to that was a general store conducted by Stout and Flak, and then came the residences of Misses Robbins, on the site of the Worden building. William Imlay was occupying the old homestead, and his neighbor, Joseph Robbins, was in the tailor business in the old building next door.” The building currently located at 30 Main Street is the Worden building, also known as the Dr. Framer Annex, which was completed in 1872.  The Robbins Sisters’ house was demolished sometime prior to the Worden building being constructed.

An 1850 United States census record documents the occupants as William V. Robbins, Ruth Robbins, Sara Robbins, Beulah Robbins, and Lydia Ford.  Their neighbors toward the north were the Imlays and next to the Imlays were Joseph and Elizabeth Robbins.  Their neighbors toward the south were Mary Page who married to Timothy Page a descendant of Aaron Robins, son of Daniel Robins, Sr., the first settler by that name to the area.  Aaron had owned the plantation immediately north of Allentown in 1706 and his granddaughter, Margert, married Joseph Page, Timothy’s father. 

William, Ruth and Sarah were the children of Vanroom Robbins and Tabitha Ford.  Vanroom, a descendant of Benjamin Robbins, brother to Aaron, had eleven children including William, Ruth, Lydia, Sarah, Patience, Hannah, Mary, Elizabeth, Ann, Benjamin, and Vanroom, Jr. 

Hannah married John Dickson; Patience married Nathaniel Cafferty; and Mary married William Rogers. The maiden sisters were Ruth, and Sarah, plus Lydia, Elizabeth, and Ann who passed away prior to 1850.  Lydia died in 1849; Elizabeth in 1848 and Ann in 1839.  They are interred in the Crosswicks Methodist Cemetery at Crosswicks. Whether they were all involved with the station remains a mystery but the Aunt Sallie mentioned in the article could have been Sarah since Sallie is a nickname for Sarah.

Many articles had mentioned the sisters but only the 1918 article identifies one of the sisters.  The witness to this fact is unknown, but future research may someday identify her.

Photos and images provided:

Smoke From Quebec, Canada Creates Hazy, Smoky Skies In New Jersey

June 6, 2023

MOUNT HOLLY, NJ — The National Weather Service Philadelphia Mount Holly reported hazy, smoky skies across the Northeast today that are having impacts on air quality. But where did all of this thick, heavy smoke come from? Raging wildfires in Quebec, Canada are generating large smoke plumes to the north and ALL of the smoke is being funneled right into the Northeast thanks to steering currents from a stationary low off the coast of Maine and a strong high over the Great Lakes and Ontario. Additional smoke and haze is expected to arrive around sunset tonight and continue into the day tomorrow, bringing air quality concerns along with it.

McGuire Airforce Base – KWRI METAR (Meteorological Aerodrome Reports) data indicated 3 miles visibility CLR with haze late this afternoon. Since that report the visibility has increased to 5 miles with haze and broken clouds tonight. Haze could be seen throughout the area and with a smell of smoke. Trenton Mercer Airport KTTN reports 3 miles visibility and overcast skies tonight.

Photos from the Allentown – Upper Freehold Township areas showing hazy smoky skies.

Here is a look at the current surface visibility restrictions due to the Canadian wildfire smoke across the area. The smoke and haze should slowly improve overnight, however an additional plume of smoke is expected to arrive Wednesday afternoon and evening

Haze and smoke will continue tonight through Wednesday. Temps will be near normal. Some isolated showers and thunderstorms are possible to the north Wed afternoon, but most areas will remain dry.

For air quality in your area, check

NJ Fallen Firefighters Memorial Service Held

June 3, 2023

ALLENTOWN – UPPER FREEHOLD TWP., NJ (MONMOUTH)–The New Jersey Fallen Firefighters Memorial and Fire Equipment Museum held the 2023 annual Memorial Service this afternoon at 1:00 p.m. This is a special tribute to Our Fallen Firefighters. “Those brave and courageous heroes who un-selflessly dedicated their lives, fighting to protect the lives and property of people, some of them they knew and many of them they would never meet. Their memory lives in our hearts and with the families left behind.”

Those who have died in the Line-of-Duty in New Jersey in 2022:

Harrison Fire Department – Vincent Doffont

Keyport Fire Department – Timothy Pfleger

Saddle Brook Fire Department – Basil Pizzuto

Upper Saddle River Fire Department – Alex Moss

Westwood Fire Department – Kevin May

According to The U.S. Fire Administration statistics there have been 30 firefighter fatalities in the United States in 2023 as of June 3, 2023.

Subscribe to the new Mid-Jersey.New YouTube Channel (still double posted on the old channel but needed its own account)

Photos: Anthony Greco

Memorial Day Parade And Memorial Service Held In Allentown

May 29, 2023

ALLENTOWN, NJ (MONMOUTH)–The Allentown Lions Club, Memorial Day Parade and Memorial Service was held today. The parade started at 10:30 a.m. at the corner of Allen Drive and Main Street in the Borough, turned left up High Street, and ended at the lower Newell Elementary School Parking lot near the War Memorial. The Memorial Service was held immediately following the parade at the War Memorial located at the upper parking lot of Newell Elementary. 

The Grand Marshal was Kevin O’Neill a Veteran of the U.S. Navy (Corpsman), a 25-year Lion, a 37-year member of the Knights of Columbus, a 38-year member of American Legion Post #31, a 10-year veteran of the Hope Fire Co. a former Allentown Troop 180 Scout Master, Cub Pack 180 Leader, and member of the troop’s Executive Committee, a local youth baseball & soccer coach and a professional drug and alcohol counselor (LCSW) and more. You can read more about Grand Marshal Kevin O’Neill here:

Main Street Reopened In Allentown After Crash

May 25, 2023

ALLENTOWN, NJ (MONMOUTH)–Around 10:10 p.m. Hope Fire Company of Allentown was dispatched to a vehicle crash into a utility pole near 73 South Main Street (near the Mill Pond) with reported wires down. Upon arrival firefighters confirmed damage to the utility pole but the vehicle left the scene. Firefighters have Main Street closed between High Street and Lakeview Drive. The Monmouth County Highway Department was notified to bring barricades to close the roadway for an extended period. PSE&G was notified for the damaged utility pole and repairs need. No further details are available at this time. It is unclear at this time how long the roadway will be closed.

Allentown Lions Roar With Pride: Lion Kevin O’Neill Named Parade Grand Marshal

May 10,2023

ALLENTOWN, NJ (MONMOUTH)–When the 2023 Allentown Lions Club Memorial Day Parade steps off at the corner of Allen Drive and Main Street on Monday, May 29th at 10:30 a.m. sharp, it will be led by one of the Historic Borough’s most dedicated citizens: Lion Kevin O’Neill of the Borough.

O’Neill, though no stranger to leadership positions, said he was both surprised and humbled by the citation. “To be named Parade Grand Marshal is, of course, a special honor and the Lions Club is a very special organization to me because it offers the opportunity to give back directly to the community. We serve wherever and whenever there is a need. That is what it’s all about.”

Every spring, the Lions Club seeks to honor one person who has served the community in a significant way over a period of years–even decades, said Parade Chair Rob Schmitt. “It’s never an easy choice,” Schmitt said. “The Committee considers many candidates over the course of a few months. We look, first and foremost, for a combination of military service and community service. That might include service organizations like the Lions, but it might also be someone who volunteers with the Ambulance Squad, or the Fire Company–or both, or who has coached kids for many years, or run one or several of our scouting organizations over the years, or done other work that betters our town and sets an example of selfless service for others.”

As a Veteran of the U.S. Navy (Corpsman), a 25-year Lion, a 37-year member of the Knights of Columbus, a 38-year member of American Legion Post #31, a 10-year veteran of the Hope Fire Co. a former Allentown Troop 180 Scout Master, Cub Pack 180 Leader, and member of the troop’s Executive Committee, a local youth baseball & soccer coach and a professional drug and alcohol counselor (LCSW), and as a noted friend and active citizen of Allentown Borough, Schmitt noted “so, all things considered, Kevin kind of fits the bill, right?” He added that list of what O’Neill actually accomplished for the community–and especially for the youth–within those organizations and “opportunities to give back” would undoubtedly fill volumes.

O’Neill, 63, of Greenfield Drive, has been married to his wife Eileen for 40 years and together they raised 3 children: Riley, 35; Molly, 29; and Casey, 25. (Both Riley & Casey are Allentown Eagle Scouts). “Eilleen and I moved to Allentown from Twin Rivers back in 1985. We had a condo there and had been looking in the area for a house and when we saw Allentown and then this house with this great backyard–we knew right away that this was the perfect place to raise our family.” O’Neill said.

The Grand Marshal said that he is particularly proud of reintroducing the outdoor adventure component to Allentown Scouting during his tenure with the troop. “The cultivation of the outdoor activities and high adventure program, for me, was so important in many ways: as a former Boy Scout–a kid growing up in Elizabeth, NJ–as a parent; and, of course later, as a Scoutmaster.” O’Neill independently took the rigorous BSA Assistant Scoutmaster training courses and put it to good use for Cub Pack 180 and Boy Scout Troop 180a. “I was passionate about getting the troop hiking and camping again, but Bill Hoover (also an Allentown Lion involved with scouting) introduced kayaking, and brought back canoeing, and water safety. In my time as Scoutmaster, we doubled the size of the troop.” Staying on the topic of Scouting and its importance in a community, O’Neil commented, “As a boy, I was surrounded by strong men of integrity who gave back. I credit them with showing me the example of what I would do later. I have tried to live my life by the Boy Scout Oath and Law and hope that the young people I have worked with grow up to be leaders who do the same.”

The proud Navy veteran, whose father served in the Merchant Marines during WWII, was born and raised in Elizabeth, NJ. O’Neill said, by the end of high school in 1973, he was eager to strike out on his own and joined the Navy where he served as a Corpsman from 1973-1977. He was keen to serve his country and volunteered for the FMF advanced training that would enable him to work on the front lines with the U.S. Marine Corps on the battlefields of Vietnam. This was not to be, however, as hostilities ended at the same time as his training. The young Corpsman was to spend his service as a Hospital Corpsman, first at the Naval Hospital in Orlando, Fl. (where he also became a licensed EMT), and later, at Naval Hospital in Philadelphia working in the area of Neuropsychology.

O’Neill, who earned his BA from Rutgers University in 1980, and a MSW at the University of Pennsylvania in 1982, has worked for NJ Transit for the past 17 years as the Senior Employee Assistance Professional. He earned a second M.A. in Administration from Rider University in 1989. He has been a Therapist at Main Street Counseling for the past 3 years.

Lions Club President Chuck Tkachuck of Millstone Twp. said O’Neill perfectly personifies the Lions mission to serve others wherever they are needed. “Lion Kevin is the example for the rest of us to follow. It’s that simple,” Tkachuck said. “We Lions put aside politics, religion, socioeconomic class, and all other barriers that keep us apart. Our mission is to serve others without expectation of reward or even acknowledgement. Kevin O’Neill has spent a lifetime exemplifying those high ideals of leadership, personal integrity, friendship, and service to others. But I must add that Kevin is a man known for his kindness and profound faith. We are beyond excited and proud to honor him as our 2023 Memorial Day Parade Grand Marshal.”

The Allentown Lions Club Memorial Day Parade is scheduled for Monday May 29, 2023, at 10:30am. It begins at the corner of Allen Drive & Main Street in the Borough, turns left up High Street, and ends at the lower Newell Elementary School Parking lot on High Street/ Rt. 539. Immediately following the parade is the Memorial Service for the Gallant Fallen at the War Memorial located at the upper parking lot of Newell Elementary. The Allentown Lions Club encourages all to attend this solemn and moving service.

For more information please contact Memorial Day Parade Chair Rob Schmitt at or by phone 609-364-0176

When the 2023 Allentown Lions Club Memorial Day Parade steps off at the corner of Allen Drive and Main Street on Monday, May 29th at 10:30 a.m. sharp, it will be led by one of the Historic Borough’s most dedicated citizens: Lion Kevin O’Neill of the Borough.

More Warehouses Proposed For Central New Jersey Next To Allentown

ED Note: This information was supplied directly from Allentown Borough’s Newsletter. For the latest information see the Allentown Borough website and check the Announcements page on the website.

May 5, 2023

ALLENTOWN, NJ (MONMOUTH)–Allentown Borough Officials, Allentown and Upper Freehold residents have come together to oppose two warehouses with applications to the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection for a flood hazard area Individual Permit and Freshwater Wetlands GP-6, GP-7, GP-11, and Transition Area Waiver – Averaging Plan. The site is proposed to construct two proposed warehouses and ancillary parking, sidewalks, driveways, loading docks, stormwater and utility improvements. The complete permit application package can be reviewed at the municipal clerks’ office or by appointment at the Department of Environmental Protection Trenton Office.

According to an email sent by Allentown Borough on May 2, 2023, The Borough has assembled a professional team that includes Borough Engineer Carmela Roberts, PE, CME; Land-Use Attorney Michele R. Donato; and  Environmental Consultant Attorney Stuart J. Lieberman.  These professionals are working with the Governing Body on a response statement and template letter that residents can use to oppose this development on our borders. It will be posted as soon as it is received.  

Take action by Thursday, May 11th to oppose the proposed Stein warehouse development on Old York Road

Below are all of the documents the Borough has received relating to the proposed development of the Stein property on Old York Road. This property is also known as Block 26, Lots 1 & 3 in Upper Freehold Township and Block 41.01, Lots 3 & 4 in Robbinsville Township. There is an application before the Monmouth County Planning Board and we expect that one will be before the Upper Freehold Township Planning Board. 

The Borough has assembled a professional team that includes Borough Engineer Carmela Roberts, PE, CME and Environmental Consultant Attorney Stuart J. Lieberman to represent the Borough as the applications move forward, but we still need your help to voice opposition to this development.

Use the template below to respond to the NJDEP in writing by Thursday, May 11th. If you are a resident of Indian Run, we also ask you to include any information about flooding on or around your property with supporting photographs or videos. Letters can be sent to the NJDEP directly. Copies of letters, photographs or videos sent can be dropped off at Borough Hall or sent to 

 Bohler’s Letter to the Borough- April 26, 2023
 Bohler’s Letter to the Borough- April 27, 2023
 Ecolsciences Freshwater Wetlands Environmental Report- April 28, 2023
 Mapping and photographs- March 24, 2023
 David Steinberg’s Letter to the NJDEP- January 24, 2023
 Template Letter Word
 Template Letter PDF

ED Note: This information was supplied directly from Allentown Borough’s Newsletter. For the latest information see the Allentown Borough website and check the Announcements page on the website.

Residents have started a petition that can be viewed here:

Overdevelopment is once again threatening our rural environment and quality of life. This time, the literal foundations of our towns are at stake.

Active Acquisitions Upper Freehold LLC has applied to build two large warehouses on Block 26, Lots 1, 2, & 3 in Upper Freehold Township (UFT). The builder would pave over 23 acres of UFT farmland on scenic Old York Road! This farmland has been in use for over 200 years!

The plan may require a separate wastewater mitigation system or sewer, potentially leading to MORE WAREHOUSE DEVELOPMENT, affordable housing developments, and HIGHER TAXES from increased school district enrollments. This is how chasing ratables actually ends up INCREASING taxes!

Tell the Upper Freehold Township Committee at to say NO to:

  • ANY new VARIANCES tied to this proposal
  • MORE TRUCK TRAFFIC from over 100 truck loading docks 
  • INCREASED COSTS for police, fire & first aid services resulting in HIGHER TAXES
  • Required amendments for the construction of new SEWERS
  • Higher CRIME without a local police force to promptly respond
  • FLOODING due to increases in stormwater 
  • DESTRUCTION of the UFT Township, Monmouth County and NJDOT approved Scenic Byway and loss of open space
  • INCREASED TRAFFIC, CONGESTION, AND EMISSIONS with more than 600 additional cars on our roads
  • IRREVESABLE HARM TO WILDLIFE that use this land as their only home
  • This MEGA WAREHOUSE will degrade the quality of life for residents of Upper Freehold Township, the historic village of Allentown Borough, and everyone in the region.

Your opinions matter! The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) wants your comments. 

Tell the NJDEP to deny the builder’s application for a wetland’s waiver and flood hazard permit. That will only happen if they hear from YOU.

Click HERE for a template a letter of opposition to the NJDEP. The deadline to submit letters is Thursday, May 11 


Documents below provided by Allentown Borough:

ED Note: This information was supplied directly from Allentown Borough’s Newsletter. For the latest information see the Allentown Borough website and check the Announcements page on the website.

Allentown High School 1980’s Alumni Group Hosts Fundraiser To Benefit Academic And Athletic Student Programs

April 24, 2023

ALLENTOWN, NJ (MONMOUTH)–Allentown High School Alumni [non-profit] group is hosting a fundraiser to benefit AHS student academic and athletic programs. On May 19, 2023, AHS alum and founder of the AHS 1980s Alumni group Scott Trethaway, will serve a day in In-House suspension to raise money for the students of the beloved alma mater. 35 years ago, Trethaway was “sentenced” to a day of suspension for a practical joke he pulled on the day of graduation. He never served his time. Trethaway will “turn himself in” to the Allentown High School Administration and the alumni group hopes the community will join them in raising his “bail” money. Superintendent of Schools Mr. Mark Guterl has noted this is first time in the high school’s history that an alumni group has supported the students in this way.  100% of the donations will support AHS student programs. 

The AHS 1980s non-profit group was formed in the fall of 2022 to support one of their own. Thomas Falkowski, class of ’89 was inducted into the AHS Sports Hall of Fame last October during 2022 Homecoming. This induction was especially significant because the Allentown football program was almost terminated in the late 1980s. Because of the tenacity, school spirit and passion of the student body, the football program was saved. Fast forward to 2016. Allentown High School won its first sectional football championship in the Central Jersey Group IV finals.  Today, the AHS football program is holding their own in the overall standing.

The AHS 1980s Alumni group has grown to well over 800 members with the focus of reconnecting and reminiscing. Many of the friendships stemmed from participating in academic and athletic programs.  With a mission to give back, this group is hoping to demonstrate to the current AHS students that their programs and the friendships that grow from them can last a lifetime.  “These programs matter and so do the students.” says Trethaway. “If we can encourage and support both that’s what we want to do.”

Donations can be made through Venmo, @Redbirds4EverAlumni or PayPal.ME/AHSalumni4ever