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Open Letter to Parsippany Residents

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Dear Fellow Residents,

I attended a special Par-Troy Hills council meeting in December 2008. The week before Mayor Michael Luther’s last year as mayor. In attendance, five council members, Business Administrator, Township attorney and township clerk, Judy Silver.

I identify Judy Silver because to me the Par-Troy Hills council chamber was her “house” yet all documents that evening were prepared by Morris County Joint Insurance Fund (MJIF) Administrators and distributed by Betty Lou DeCroce the then Twp. Clerk of Roxbury and Chairwoman of MJIF. As I said that evening, this was a done deal before it even started. MJIF is a self-insurance fund comprising of mostly townships from Morris County.  When one thinks of self-insurance one immediately concludes there’s a cost-saving or why else would one join the group.  Well, taxpayers, if you recall the MJIF cost Parsippany $250,000 more per year for three years totaling $750,000. The lowest quote was from Travelers Insurance Company.

Two of the five council people that voted for this contract that evening were James Barberio and Ann Grossi, respectively current Mayor of Parsippany and Ann Grossi Morris County Freeholder and candidate for Morris County Clerk. Did they have the best financial interests for their constituents? That evening I pointed out that a member of a self-insurance group in New Jersey can not receive insurance premium rebates until after three years of participation in the group. This was confirmed by the funds C.E.O. at the meeting.

This past March 2013, I inquired as to what the town’s premium rebate was and the answer I received was Zero. Voting unanimously that evening was self-serving:

1)     Political donations from assigned attorneys

2)     What’s best for the party not for the residents

That $750,000 could have gone a long way:

a)     Pay raises for our Blue Collar workers, these men and women are underpaid compared to the surrounding townships

b)     Hiring more police officers, we are well below the Township ordinance staffing requirement

c)     Reduction in your real estate taxes

I am bringing this to your attention in order for you to draw your own conclusions.

Roy Messmer
Parsippany

Letters to the Editor: Do you have an opinion to express? Send letters to flcahill@parsippanyfocus.com. Disclaimer: To be considered for publication, letters to the editor must include the writer’s full name, address, and daytime phone number. Letters may be condensed, although care is taken to preserve the writer’s comments (maximum 200 words). Copyright in material submitted to Parsippany Focus and accepted for publication remains with the author, but Parsippany Focus may freely reproduce it in print, electronic or other forms. We are unable to acknowledge receipt of letters.

Carifi Demands Mayor to Stop Handing Out Merit Raises

Parsippany-Troy Hills Council President Paul Carifi, Jr.
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Councilman Paul Carifi, Jr.

Carifi: “This mayor is sneaking in merit raises while Parsippany Residents struggle to get by and keep their jobs.”

Parsippany-Troy Hills Councilman Paul Carifi, Jr. today called on Mayor Barberio to be a responsible steward of taxpayer funds and take out exorbitant merit raises to a chosen few employees in his budget proposal.

“The mayor has distorted the REAL budget story and fails to tell Parsippany residents the underhanded maneuvers he pulled to hand out exorbitant raises for a chosen few while Parsippany residents are struggling to make ends meet and retain their jobs,” Carifi said.

“Mayor Barberio tried to sneak in huge merit raises, in addition to annual pay raises, without discussing it with the township council members during prior budget meetings. This is a violation of the public trust.”

“We should not be handing out merit raises during these challenging economic times when Parsippany residents are under constant threat of pay freezes, pay cuts, furloughs and layoffs. Handing out $5,000 merit raises in addition to two-percent annual raises for employees making more than $90,000 a year is irresponsible,” added Carifi. “Additionally, the mayor is trying to hand out raises to part-time employees that far exceed what most full-time employees are getting as their annual raise. Again, it is another reckless and irresponsible backdoor maneuver crafted by this mayor.

“Instead of recklessly handing out these raises, funds should go to programs that directly benefit residents and taxpayers. I am committed to supporting programs for seniors, families and improving the quality-of-life in this township. However, the mayor is tacking on merit raises to the budget proposal that will cost taxpayers plenty while he distorts and I will not support his underhanded tactics and this is the reason I voted no. I am being honest and forthcoming with the taxpayer, unfortunately the mayor hides from and deceives them.”

Car Seat Safety Check

The Rotary Club of Parsippany-Troy Hills and Par-Troy EMS will hold a car seat check on Saturday, June 8 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. at Parsippany Municipal Building, 1001 Parsippany Boulevard. In case of rain the location will be at District #6 firehouse, 60 Littleton Road. Proper car seat use can save lives and reduce injuries.

Motor vehicle crashes are the number one cause of death of children over the age of six months in the United States. The proper use of car seats is one of the simplest and most effective methods available for protecting the lives of our young children.  Presently, 25% of all child car seats are used incorrectly.

Certified Child Passenger Safety Technicians will be on hand to inspect your car seat for proper installation, fit and use.

For additional information please contact Dean Snook at (973) 263-7163 or email dsnook@parsippany.net.

Parsippany Town Council Agenda Meeting 05/07/2013

Reader Blasts Out Regarding Waterview

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lettersDear Editor:

Paul Carifi, Jr. needs to be elected because he opposes waterview.

Civilization is defined as steady “improvement” of a society. How can more and more of the same proved wrong scenarios like sprawl development be allowed and encouraged. Parsippany a once Arcadian type country landscape is already degraded from such past corporate impacts that have undermined community in America. Our last wooded lot on Route 46 is not only an important landscape because of its “aquifer recharge” and “remaining biodiversity” but because it demonstrates that our present Town Leaders are not up to stuff on the very times they are living in and seem to part of the me generation in politics; ignoring science and the future for short term financial gains that detract from quality of life issues.

State Master Plans for development are being tossed aside for some private interest. Rutgers University studies, New Jersey Highlands Regional Plans and sound science concerning Climate Change caused by fossil fuels and human life styles are likely being ignored. A Town-Councilman stated at a previous meeting addressing Waterview quote; ‘we have plenty of water’ when asked about the circumstance of facts that found Waterview was an aquifer recharge. He went on to say that, ‘we are asked to conserve water only because of times of future drought’. The fact is Parsippany needs to buy water from two other water companies that belong to corporations, private sources of what should be publicly owned water sources. Parsippany cannot meet their required needs without doing so.

One of the most important factors about living in Parsippany that we should take pride in is that we are part of the New Jersey Highlands; this seems to mean little to the present leaders. The Highlands of New Jersey make up 17% of the States landmass and supplies 65% of the water supply. The continued destruction of the Highlands landscapes is and does have an impact and accumulative effect of that water source and the health and well-being of the population that uses it. Impervious surface that already abounds in Parsippany’s many developed places deprives the aquifers health and available water recharge; 40% or less of the water taken for various uses returns to the aquifer. The more development the more storm-runoff is allowed to pollute our water sources.

Their contention is that because it is number 15 or 14 or 17 best places to live in the area, which is really conjecture and according to class and money of who’s who. Their other cry is taxes, which can change at any time due to many social factors. Middle class Americans on a whole pay an unfair share of taxes and receive less and less for their taxes. Whereas Corporations (like the developers) do not pay their fair share, undermine government itself to keep it that way. Quality of life cannot be measured unless a community sense exits. Community is people and landscapes. Has not Parsippany been over-developed? In actuality Parsippany a once “Arcadian” community has already been spoiled in many ways by not keeping a balance between community and smart development. If our present Town Administrators do not respect the State of NJ Master Plan for development and make statements that are not true about water sources and our potential positive role to play in the future of the Highlands Protections, they should not be in office and surely not re-elected to office. The land belongs to all of us and most of all the future, we must hand it over in good condition. We are only sojourners passing through. Shall we pass through as keepers of the garden with understanding and compassion to guide our senses and responsibility or pass through like plunders and pirates always taking from and never giving or learning anything greater than what is right for me and mine in my time?

The most important aspect of this coming Mayoral Election is not Democratic or Republican but what is right for all Americans; a people and land. Let this election bring a better moment to protect our land and community against forces that are apart from not a part of a greater theme of life. The developer RDR is not part of our Parsippany, when the Planning Board and the Mayor voted to advance the rezoning ordinance they separated themselves from any sense of community and crossed the line into self-interest. Their demonstration of lack of concern and knowledge of the environmental issues of our times surely disqualifies them. How can RDR developer supersede the overwhelming desire of the community to oppose an unneeded, unwanted threat not only to the quality of life but to the very planet itself? RDR land destruction at Waterview if allowed, will only further the climate change occurring by adding to the sum total of accumulative effects.

It should be mentioned in conclusion that our Highlands are even now being unduly and unjustly impacted by the large proliferation of pipeline projects of the large fossil fuel interest. These pipelines bring destruction of forest, public lands introduce dangerous chemicals into our environments and destroy communities in their path; so Waterview and its 26 plus acres become even more important to protect. Progress is no longer progress but destruction and it has passed its true value as to bring quality to all life except the developer. It is no longer a source of well-being.

Nick R Homyak
Lake Hiawatha

Adopt Me!

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Snyder, approximately a one year old Labrador Retriever Mix was at Petco, 1111 Route 46, Parsippany, on Saturday waiting for it’s Furever Home.  The dog is up for adoption through Eleventh Hour Rescue. Synder also has a brother, Scully that was there looking for his Forever Home. You can visit Scully’s website by clicking here.

Eleventh Hour Rescue is a volunteer based, non profit, 501(c)3 organization that literally saves dogs and cats from death row.  They rely on the generosity of their volunteers to provide loving foster homes for our dogs and cats pulled from death row in high-kill shelters.  They invite you to explore their website and humbly offer you the chance to let one of our exceptional animals touch your heart the same way they each touch ours. Without the public, they couldn’t do what they do, and that is to simply give them a chance.  Without the public, the animals don’t stand a chance. For more information on these dogs visit their website by clicking here. You can also call them at (973) 664-0865.

Over 450 Job Seekers Attend Parsippany Area Chamber of Commerce Job Fair

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Members of the U.S. Army, Congressman Rodney Frelinghuysen, Parsippany Area Chamber of Commerce President Robert J. Peluso, Councilman Paul Carifi, Jr., Louis Valori and Jim Vigilante (rear) were in attendance at PACC’s Job Fair.

The Parsippany Area Chamber of Commerce held another successful Job Fair at the Holiday Inn of Parsippany.  Part of the Chamber’s vision is to reenergize the local economy through job creation and fulfillment.  This year, the Chamber is heading in a positive direction by helping over 450 local job seekers meet 33 local area employer at this year’s Annual Job Fair.  The Chamber’s Employment Outreach Program also includes strategic partnerships which include the NJSBDC of Northwest Jersey, free job posting boards, newsletters, career counseling, internships, and seminars.

We’re going to create and fill jobs for our residents to assist in sparking economic growth throughout the Parsippany Area by encouraging investment in filling vacant spaces and hiring our unique workforce stated Chamber President and Job Fair Committee Co-Chairs, Robert J. Peluso and Mary Adelman. “Our volunteer committee did an outstanding job in making the event a success while embracing collaboration amongst businesses and residents.  It is our goal to show area businesses that our local residents are educated, skilled, and ready to work.  I could not be prouder,” stated Peluso.

Employers were engaged with the Chamber and welcomed by Chamber Members over breakfast prior to the event.   Many employers noted that they were introduced to a diversified group of quality candidates, therefore yielding positive results in attracting good candidates.    Attending employers included ADP, Axa Advisors, Care One, Coca Cola Refreshments, Prudential, Provident Bank, Quest Diagnostics, Rite Aid, T-Mobile, Tiffany & Company, Planned Companies, Zoomus and many more.

The Chamber also added to its shopping local campaign by providing each attendee with a free Greater Parsippany Rewards card that offered discounts at local area businesses.  Also in attendance was Congressman Rodney Frelinghuysen, Parsippany Councilman Paul Carifi Jr., the United States Navy, and United States Army.  Annually, the Employment Outreach Program assists over 2500 job seekers and 75 area employers. The program is provided free of charge to candidates and funding for the Job Fair and related Employment Outreach services are provided by the self-funded, volunteer based Parsippany Area Chamber of Commerce. For more information on the Parsippany Area Chamber of Commerce or Employment Outreach Program, please visit parsippanychamber.org.

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Congressman Rodney Frelinghuysen congratulates President and CEO of Zoomus.com during PACC’s Job Fair. Zoomus had a display offering jobs to the over 45o attendees

 

Central Middle School Variety Show 2013

Watch the kids of Central Middle School show off their many, many talents.

Parsippany Doctor Indicted for Alleged Practice of Medicine After License was Suspended

fadibejjaniActing Morris County Prosecutor Fredric M. Knapp and Parsippany-Troy Hills Police Chief Paul Philipps announce that Doctor Fadi Bejjani, 56, of Roseland was indicted today after an investigation revealed that he was allegedly practicing medicine while his license was suspended. His practice was listed as Advanced Minimally Invasive Surgery, located at 2932 Route 10, Morris Plains.

The New Jersey Attorney General’s Office, the Division of Consumer Affairs, filed a complaint against the defendant on June 5, 2012, charging numerous alleged violations concerning his practice of medicine including, but not limited to, the performance of surgeries that he was unqualified to perform; gross negligence committed in the performance of cosmetic and spinal procedures on at least nine patients; the failure to notify the Board of Medical Examiners of a prior charge of Driving a Motor Vehicle Under the Influence; pending disciplinary actions instituted in the State of New York with regard to his medical practice; a guilty plea in federal court for filing false federal tax returns; and other violations of Board of Medical Examiners regulations.

Subsequent to the filing of the complaint by the Board of Medical Examiners, defendant entered into a Consent Order on June 13, 2012, suspending his license to practice medicine in the State of New Jersey. An undercover investigator from the Division of Consumer Affairs visited Dr. Bejjani’s office in Parsippany-Troy Hills on July 26, 2012, for a consultation for cosmetic surgery. Allegedly, a consultation fee was provided to the defendant, the undercover investigator was examined as a patient, the surgery and surgical fees were discussed and the undercover investigator was provided with consent forms and instructions pertaining to the operation.

Defendant was indicted on two counts of Third Degree Unlicensed Practice of Medicine.

The defendant’s license to practice remains suspended and he is currently in custody in the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn, New York, on charges of filing false federal tax returns. His expected earliest date of release is September 27, 2013.

The State is represented by Assistant Prosecutor/SDAG Julie Serfess with regard to these charges.

Acting Prosecutor Knapp thanks the New Jersey Attorney General’s Office, Division of Consumer Affairs, the Parsippany-Troy Hills Police Department and the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crimes Unit, whose efforts contributed to this result.

As far as the allegations of insurance fraud, Bejjani was found to have been falsifying tax returns since 2005, withholding thousands of dollars of income. In his plea agreement, Bejjani admitted he failed to include $139,381 as income on his personal federal tax return in the tax year of 2005; $127,532 in 2006, $161,135 in 2007, and $110,062 in 2008.

A press release issued by the national Department of Justice in May, 2012 said that Bejjani will be sentenced in on Tuesday, September 1 in Syracuse, New York.  Bejjani was a resident of Utica at the time he filed his 2005-2008 taxes.

His maximum term of imprisonment could be three years, with a fine of $250,000. In addition, he will be required to pay back a total of $164, 409 for the tax years 2005-2008.

The charges and allegations contained in the indictment are merely accusations and the defendant is considered innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Any inquiries can be directed to First Assistant Morris County Prosecutor/SDAG Thomas Zelante at (973) 285-6252 or tzelante@co.morris.nj.us.

Easy Cooking With Ev

It’s spring time! In this weeks episode we will be featuring pan seared salmon with balsamic sauce – fennel & onions, organic kale salad, oven roasted sweet potato fries,and citrus infused strawberries for dessert. We will also feature a “kids corner” power smoothie for.

Rockaway Meadow Circus

The children at Rockaway Meadow wow and awe us with a spectacular circus performance.

Campaign Signs Are Starting To Appear

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Campaign signs are starting to appear throughout neighborhoods in Parsippany

The campaign sign above appears on a wooden fence on South Beverwyck Road are starting to appear all over town. The primary election will be held on Tuesday, June 4.

“Parsippany’s Future” on the campaign trail

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Paul Carfii, Jr., Robert Peluso and Louis Valori on the campaign trail.

Parsippany’s Future members were out campaigning in the nice Spring weather.  The trio, running under the slogan “Parsippany’s Future” were seen on Pennsylvania Lane visiting the residents and discussing their platform for the upcoming Primary Election to be held on Tuesday, June 4. Robert Peluso and Louis Valori are seeking seats on the Parsippany-Troy Hills Council and Paul Carifi, Jr., is seeking the Mayor’s seat.

Help for Today, Hope For Tomorrow

drugawarenessThe Township of Parsippany-Troy Hills hosted a community forum on Monday, April 22 at the Parsippany PAL Youth Center.

Guest speakers included Steve Liga, Dr. Frank Mattiace, Devin Fox, Christine Michaels, Elizabeth Thompson, Paul Ressler, Donovan Allieri and Sam Archambault.

NCADD-NJ Advocacy Leaders and partners organized and promoted this event to create an open dialogue between parents, youth, the public, elected officials and decision makes on issues affecting our community like underage drinking and prescription drug use.

How to can help… As a call to action regarding “Help for Today Hope for Tomorrow” community forum, NCADD-NJ encourages you to share the issues that you care about with your elected officials and community leaders and build a dialog with them.

Each state Senate and Assembly member, as well as Parsippany-Troy Hills Mayor James Barberio have offices you can schedule an appointment to share the issues you care about.  For a list of your elected officials click here.

Pictured above was one of the many exhibits on display during the event.  At left, Parsippany Area Chamber of Commerce, President Robert J. Peluso.robertatdrugawareness

Parsippany RedHawks Softball Team Fundraiser

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Parsippany High School Red Hawks Softball girls were out raising funds at the Dunkin’ Donuts on Smith Road.

“Jump In The Lake” Fundraiser raises over $10,000

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Councilman Paul Carifi, Jr. (center) was one of the many “Jumpers” at “Jump In The Lake” fundraiser by Citizens for Health, Safety & Welfare. The group is raising funds to help pay some of the bills incurred fighting the Waterview Project in Parsippany.

Community action has never been so much fun. Lakers joined in to take part in the first “Jump in the Lake!” event on Sunday, April 28 at Island Beach, Mountain Lakes.

The brisk event is a benefit to help preserve the quality of life in our community organized by the Citizens for Health, Safety & Welfare (formerly Don’t Rezone Waterview) in partnership with the New Jersey Highlands Coalition. Proceeds will go towards funding research and hiring professional experts to address the community’s concerns regarding the proposed development at Waterview.

Before or after the splash, the guests enjoyed music, food, vendors and entertainment for the entire family. Prizes were awarded to the craziest outfits; largest sports, business or neighborhood teams; and biggest fundraisers. The Grand Prize for the top fundraiser is a hot air balloon ride for two donated by A Beautiful Balloon.

Citizens for Health, Safety & Welfare (C4HSW), formerly known as “Don’t Rezone Waterview,” has been extremely active in the past couple of months and has established a very well-oiled, highly sophisticated organization to respond to the Waterview development plan. I am sending you this note to keep you up to date about our activities.

C4HSW is a New Jersey non-profit organization with three trustees, a 9-person board of directors (president, vice presidents, secretary, treasurer), with no official “membership.”  Our organization is comprised of hundreds of supporters.  The Waterview Rezoning Proposal had its first hearing before the Parsippany Planning Board in October, 2012.  Almost no one attended since it was not well-understood or publicized.  At the next meeting in December, enough residents showed up (roughly 180) to shut down the meeting since the venue was filled over its capacity.  The word started to get out about Waterview in time for the next meeting that was rescheduled at the Parsippany High School.  Roughly 600 angry residents showed up for that meeting.  By late December, 2012, a small, loosely knit group of concerned citizens had banded together to create “Don’t Rezone Waterview” (ultimately renamed C4HSW).  In, February 2013, the Planning Board made its recommendation to the Parsippany Council in favor of rezoning Waterview.  The Waterview property is currently zoned POD for office buildings only.  The Planning Board followed the developer’s recommendation that the property be rezoned to include zoning for mixed residential and commercial.    By February, 2013, C4HSW had organized sufficiently to hire an attorney and one expert to represent the interests of the hundreds of residents who had shown up to these meetings and were denied to opportunity to present any evidence in opposition to the developer’s case.  The recommendation to rezone Waterview was then sent to the Council, where it currently awaits a decision.  At the last Council meeting, on March 19, 2013, the Parsippany Planner presented his version of the Ordinance to Rezone Waterview.  Strangely, this version included an entrance onto Intervale Road, owned by Mountain Lakes, which had been voluntarily removed in the Planning Board stage by the developer.

 

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Councilman Paul Carifi, Jr., Citizens for Health, Safety & Welfare President Dave Kaplan, Parsippany Area Chamber of Commerce President Robert Peluso and Lou Valori at the “Jump in the Lake” fundraiser.
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Robert Peluso, Councilman Paul Carifi, Jr., and Lou Valori show off their new T-Shirts from “Jump in the Lake” fundraiser.

 

Par Hills Baseball Car Wash Fundraiser

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Kire Milevski, John Longo and Joe Hunt were on Parsippany Road promoting the car wash fundraiser for the Parsippany Hills High School Baseball team.

Gene and Ann Capozzi Celebrates 50th Wedding Anniversary

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Gene and Ann Capozzi was married on May 25, 1963.
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Gene and Ann Capozzi celebrated their 50th Anniversary on Sunday, April 21 at Mountain Lakes Club

Gene and Ann Capozzi originally of Parsippany; celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary at a surprise party that was held in their honor on Sunday, April 21 at the Mountain Lakes Club.

They were married on May 25, 1963 in Newark and moved to Parsippany in 1969 where they settled to raise their family.

Gene was a senior sanitation inspector for the town of Parsippany.  They owned a coffee shop and deli for many, many years where Ann worked.

When the happy couple retired in 2007 they moved to Brick.

They have three daughters; Sharon and Ray Hogrelius of Rockaway, Denine Sebesto and John Bydook of Parsippany and Eugina and George Smith also of Rockaway.

They are the proud grandparents of Raymond and Kevin Hogrelius, Michael and Alyssa Sebesto and Cassandra and Christopher Smith.

Par-Troy Little League East Opening Celebrations

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Councilman Jonathan Nelson throws opening ball during the Par-Troy Little League East Opening Ceremonies
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New Jersey Blue Collar Workers donated $3,400 for a new scoreboard to the Par-Troy Little League East
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Players of Par-Troy Little League during the Opening Celebration
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Morris County Clerk candidate Jim Vigilante, Councilman Paul Carifi, Jr., Parsippany Area Chamber of Commerce President Robert Peluso and Lou Valori during the Par-Troy East Little League opening ceremonies.

Acrylic Painting Classes at Parsippany PAL for kids, teens and adults

Acrylic Painting for Kids – 5 weeks, ages 6-11, tuition $150.00
Thursdays 6:00 to 8:00 p.m., May 30 through June 27

Acrylic Painting for Adults – 5 weeks, ages 15 and up, tuition $150.00
Mondays 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. June 3 through July 1.

School’s-Out Painting Workshops
Specially priced three hour class, larger canvas size, new materials and techniques plus airbrush instruction, tuition $40.00

Space Painting Workshop– Monday, June 24 – 12:00 to 3:00 p.m.
Paint a galaxy, starfield, spaceship or nebula using tape, cups, sponges, plates and an airbrush

Neon Painting Workshop– Thursday June 27 – 12:00 to 3:00 p.m.
Create an impressive, glowing design using airbrush florescents, a black light will be available during class

Discover your creative talent!  The Acrylic Painting Classes are two hour lessons including landscape, seascape, floral, animals and space; beginner students will learn the basics of mixing colors, composition, texture and various brush techniques, leaving each class with a finished painting.  Acrylics are non-toxic and can mimic oils or watercolors; all paints included, a $2.00 canvas fee applies to all classes and workshops.  Register online by clicking here.  Missed classes can be made up if you email instructor on or before day of absence, all classes taught by local Parsippany artist and instructor John Darvie, please call 973-335-7332 or email with any questions (apollo1jd@gmail.com).

Parsippany PAL, 33 Baldwin Road, Parsippany