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{ 2 }  SNJ Today  |  JUNE 16, 2021                                                                                                                                                                                                                               JUNE 16, 2021  |  SNJToday.com   { 3 }
             CONTENTS                                                                 EDITOR’S NOTE




       COMMUNITY UPDATE ....................5–7  ON THE AVE .......................................15  Dad’s Trees
       THE GREAT OUTDOORS ....................8  TASTE OF THE TOWN ...................... 16
       XSPERIENCE XSPERO ...................... 10
                                          BUSINESS & TECH ............................ 18                                       Deborah Boerner Ein
       COMMENTARY ...................................11
                                          FUN & GAMES ................................... 19  t’s never been easy for this tree person to
       CONGRATS TO GRADS ...............12–13                                    choose a favorite tree, but a memorable
       HISTORY  ............................................. 14  COMMUNITY CALENDAR  .................20  Ione is the tulip-tree that grew—and still
       FACES IN THE NEWS ........................ 14  BUSINESS DIRECTORY ....................23  grows—in my grandparents’ yard at the main
                                                                               farmhouse next door to my childhood home.
                                                                               I was fascinated by its tulip-shaped leaves, the
                                                                               first to turn color—a brilliant yellow—in fall.
                                                                               That was the only time of year I got to see the
                                                                               leaves up close, because the tree, typical of its
                                            Pick up your copy of SNJ Today     kind, had no branches close to the ground.
                                             at various locations including:     As much as I admired that tulip-tree, aka
                                             • ShopRite, 1255 Landis Ave.,     yellow-poplar or tulip-poplar, the farmyard’s
                                                       Vineland                silver maples got more of
                          STAFF               • ShopRite, 3600 E. Landis       my attention in those days.
                                                    Ave., Vineland
                                                                               There were “helicopter”
                                              • ShopRite, 2102 N. 2nd St.,     samaras to set sailing
       DEBORAH BOERNER EIN, Editor                     Millville               on the wind and wide                              oak was second base and
       CHRIS TOLER, Production Manager        • Main Street Market, 140 S.     branches within reach of                          the steps to our side door
       MICKEY BRANDT, Contributor Emeritus                                     a six-year-old, who would                         was third. For many years,
       KEN PUSTIZZI, SR., CEO                      Main St., Millville         occasionally hide among                           that first-base oak tree did
       KEN PUSTIZZI, JR., President          • ShopRite, 1000 N. Pearl St.,    the limbs to avoid being                          double-duty as its trunk
       GIANFRANCO CASALINUOVO, COO                    Bridgeton                                                                  held the basketball hoop
       Advertising Executives:               • Bridgeton Family Diner, 825     called for farm chores.                           and net against a home-
       MARIE HALPIN-GALLO, mgallo@snjtoday.com   N. Pearl St., Bridgeton         While a variety of trees
       PAMELA MORRIS, pmorris@snjtoday.com                                     had been planted about                            made plywood backboard.
                                             • Amish Market, 2 Cassidy Dr.,    the farmhouse, the trees                            The tree appeared in
         600 G St., Ste 1240, Millville, NJ 08332      Hopewell                around my own home                                many photographs of fam-
            856-327-8800 • SNJToday.com     • SNJ Today, 600 G St., Millville  were mostly native oaks                           ily events both mundane
            E-MAIL: info@SNJToday.com                                          left standing when my                             and momentous. Snowmen
                                                                               father built our house on the hill in the early   built and first cars gleaming in its shadow,
                                                                               1950s. He didn’t plant the trees but he careful-  outdoor barbeques and picnics that marked
                                                                               ly chose ones that would be left to grow and   summer birthdays, Easter family portraits and
                                                                               shelter his future family. The trees at the time   graduates flanked by proud parents.
                                                                               were not much more than saplings but would   A year and a half ago, not long after we lost
                                                                               grow along with our family and stand guard   my dad in his 98th year, we noticed that the
       Know of someone making                                                  as the house was completed, babies were born   oak was in decline. Daddy passed away in the
                                                                                                                   summer and branches came down in storms
                                                                               and brought home, toddlers grew into teenag-
       a positive difference in                                                ers and eventually left for college or careers.   over the next year. The leaves shed from the
                                                                                                                   oak the following autumn were the last to
                                                                                 The oaks were less interesting to me than
       the community?                                                          the trees next door, maybe because they were   grace its branches, which then stretched eerily
                                                                               a part of my everyday backdrop. The trees   to the sky. With the tree dangerously close
                                                                               were chosen based on their locations around   to the house, we knew that the towering oak
                                                                               the house—scattered in front yard, backyard,   would need to be felled before storms toppled
       Nominate them today!                                                    and along the driveway. Two oaks flanked the   it. Some would say its demise at that time was
                                                                                                                   coincidental but I’m not so sure.
                                                                               bottom of the drive, and one of these, with its
                                                                               double trunk, offered a perch where one of   I’d planned to be there for the felling of
       popfm999.com/a                      w  ard                              us sat as we all waited for the school bus each   the oak but circumstances kept me away that
       popfm999.com/award
                                                                                                                   day. On my next visit, I pulled up the hill
                                                                               morning. Other oaks, in the backyard, held
                                                                               swings of the wooden seat and tire varieties.   to a big sky overlooking the pleasant valley.
                                                                                 One white oak grew at the top of the hill   The tree had come down, branch by branch,
                                                                               on the kitchen side of the house, and Daddy   then the trunk with hardly a thud, I was told.
                                                                               looped the driveway around it. As it grew it   Mom chose not to witness it. We all knew it
                                                                               became an integral part of the vista overlook-  was time, just as we knew it was time to bid
                                                                               ing the valley across fields to the saltbox-style   goodbye for now to its caretaker. I have yet to
                                                                               farmhouse.                          count the rings on the stump that is left of the
                                                                                 Over the years, this particular oak was first   mighty oak, but I’d not be surprised if they
                                                                               base in kickball games with cousins, another   number 98 or so. n
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