All posts for the month April, 2013

Westfield’s Hedgehog and Feather Theatre Presents “The Secret Garden”

Published April 30, 2013 by Maryanne

Secret GardenLeft-right, Tom Schaefer, Sara Hedgepeth and Ty Jacobs (photo by Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta)

Two Fridays ago I had the honor to interview artistic producer, Sara Hedgepeth, her husband Tom Schaefer, who works on set, and actor/choreographer Ty Jacobs.

Here is my article about the “The Secret Garden” production:

Montclair Museum Event Celebrates Paterson’s ‘Past and Future’

Published April 29, 2013 by Maryanne

SAM_0731Paterson national park superintendent Darren Boch (left)

with Leonard Zax, president of the Hamilton Partnership

Yesterday I had the pleasure of covering this amazing event at Montclair Museum:

So cool that my former hometown, Montclair, had a featured event on the town I was born in, Paterson!

SAM_0725One of the Paterson inspired pieces by Oscar Bluemner

I honestly wish I had better pictures to post. The event was at a weird time from 12 to 1:30, so I was very hungry for lunch and couldn’t wait to get to Veggie Heaven. Luckily Montclair Museum had healthy Terra chips to hold me over!

All in all, it was a great, gorgeous day! Spring has sprung in New Jersey.

Happy Birthday Tommy James!

Published April 29, 2013 by Maryanne

tommy-james-and-mary-anneTommy James, Maryanne, 2011

Happy Birthday to one of my favorite artists, Tommy James!

In honor of his birthday, I am directing you to a blog I wrote last year on my other blog page, “Maryanne’s Jukebox” which describes my first experience going to see Tommy James perform back in 2010, and at the end includes an article I wrote about him that was published in several Patches online.

I truly feel that seeing Tommy James perform “Crystal Blue Persuasion” live planted a seed in me becoming a Christian. One day I was sitting in my car and heard “Crystal Blue Persuasion” started breaking down in tears and at that moment rededicated my life to Jesus Christ. Then just a few years later, I found my home church.

(Interesting side note, today I found a Christian magazine that needs writers — such a coincidence on Tommy James birthday! I’ll let you know what happens!)

Please enjoy my Jukebox page about Tommy:

Essex Special Skaters 2013

Published April 28, 2013 by Maryanne


Last night my husband Dennis and I had the pleasure of going to see Robby Stutts, son of our dear friends Bob and Marie Stutts, ice skate in the Special Skaters Spring Spectacular, along with other special needs skaters.

It was quite a show! Robbie was fantastic. In fact, he even won medals for his talents! (Here’s a recent article about him and some adorable pictures:

And here is a video of Robby skating from 2012: Robby Stutts

Robby is such a sweet kid and an inspiration! Go Robby!

SAM_0702Robby Stutts and Maryanne

Note: The delicious looking cupcake was made by Robby’s dad, Bob Stutts aka Mr. Fun, Funtime Cakes

You can like Funtime Cakes on Face Book:

SAM_0701Maryanne and Bob Stutts (Robby’s dad)

SAM_0704Robby (far right) and his friends

After the show there was a little party for the skaters with coffee and Bob’s Funtime Cakes. It was so nice to see Bob, Maria and Robby again. All the kids were so adorable and having such a great time. Very inspiring!

Afro-Cuban Festival in Paterson School 24

Published April 27, 2013 by Maryanne

SAM_0690Photo by Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta

Yesterday I had a very rewarding assignment, interviewing the students who participated in this amazing performance. (It was so cute, the younger ones that I interviewed were calling me “Miss Reporter.” I loved it!)

Here’s the full article, plus a video that someone else took. Enjoy!

Site Stats Through the Roof!

Published April 24, 2013 by Maryanne

site stats

Monday and Tuesday of this week my site stats were higher than ever — practically through the roof!

I almost cringed thinking the reason was for my vent on the ever-so-unprofessional-bad-customer-service-supermarket, Whole Foods. Maybe someone higher up was reading my blog and something would be done — finally?

Uh, no.

Truth be told … all of a sudden several hundred people started reading a blog I wrote last January on Angelyne, the 1980s Billboard Queen:

I was like, Whoa! Why the sudden interest in Angelyne? Did she die?! I hope not!

No, Angelyne is alive and well. But the latest news is that the beauty queen took a tumble:

Amazing that a little old lady falling brought so much attention to my blog! I’m glad she’s okay. I think she’s great. Anyone who spends so much time and effort on their looks in order to keep their persona going after all these years is A-OK in my book. I’ve always admired those walking work of art types, especially since I’m just the opposite, more of a blow and go kinda gal  (well, not so much “blow” anymore, as I haven’t used a blow dryer since Hurricane Sandy!)

Love you Angelyne!


Paterson Teacher Writes Environmental Children’s Book

Published April 24, 2013 by Maryanne

SAM_0640Author/Teacher Paulette Szalay

Monday I had the honor and pleasure of meeting/interviewing Paulette Szalay, author of “Baggy Maggy and Friends Save Stinkville.”

Paulette was such a doll and even autographed a book for my 11-year-old nephew, Matthew.

I was late getting there due to heavy traffic because of an accident, but some kids were allowed to be pulled from their classes so I could talk to them for the article.

Here’s the full article including a link to the website if any one wants to purchase a book: