Rutgers Gardens celebrates nature at Fall Festival

Rutgers Gardens hosted its annual Fall Festival over the weekend to help raise funds for the 180-acre public garden. Bruce Crawford, director of Rutgers Gardens, said the festival is a fun day out intended to serve as a fundraiser and community awareness event. "As long as the gardens have been here, there are still a number of families who don’t know we exist," he said. "There’s nothing out front that screams ‘Rutgers Gardens.’"…The preserve, which opened in 1922, is tucked away off Ryders Lane between New Brunswick and East Brunswick.

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Rutgers Students Help Transform Part of Downtown New Brunswick in PARK(ing) Day 2014 Celebration

Video: Rutgers Students Help Transform Part of Downtown New Brunswick in PARK(ing) Day 2014 Celebration

On September 19, members of the Rutgers Student Chapter of the New Jersey American Society of Landscape Architects (NJASLA), working with its parent organization, helped in the design and installation of PARK(ing) Day 2014 in downtown New Brunswick. This annual event, which takes place on the third Friday in September, temporarily transforms metered parking spaces into “PARK(ing)” spaces, i.e. temporary public places to enjoy a variety of activities.

This year, officials with Middlesex County Planning and the City of New Brunswick, Rutgers students from the Department of Landscape Architecture and the Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, along with several citywide civic organizations and businesses worked together to transform four parking spaces between 40-55 Bayard Street into public parklets.

Holly Nelson, instructor in the Department of Landscape Architecture and a practicing landscape architect, guided the students in rendering a park design for the Bayard Street parking spaces. “Events like PARK(ing) Day not only offer our undergraduates a unique opportunity for civic engagement; they also provide a serious design opportunity that reinforces our curriculum focus on urban and public spaces.”

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Some foods really don’t belong in the refrigerator, experts say

Distinguished scholar, microbiologist and Rutgers University professor Dr. Don Schaffner would like to impart some personal wisdom upon the general public in an effort to educate those who might benefit from his insight: He eats his peanut butter at room temperature only. "I personally just don’t like cold peanut butter, so I keep it out of the refrigerator," Schaffner said. And he’s not just talking Skippy, or Jif. He means natural peanut butter, without any preservatives. While other food safety experts, in an abundance of caution, might say he’s living dangerously, you know what, says the renowned food scientist and unabashed peanut butter lover? It ain’t gonna kill ya.

Read the entire article at NorthJersey.com »

Bear Cub Mystery in NYC: Explaining Recent Black Bear News

This week, a young black bear was found dead in New York City’s Central Park. The six-month-old female had been likely killed by a car, though how she got into the heart of the biggest city in the United States is still a mystery, according to news reports…National Geographic spoke with Brooke Maslo, a wildlife specialist at Rutgers University with extensive knowledge of black bears, about the recent events and what to do if you encounter a bear.

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Bear attack in West Milford happened after warning from hikers, was ‘one in a million,’ experts say

The five hikers who were apparently attacked by a bear last month in West Milford, with one ending up dead, were warned along the trail by hikers who said they were being followed by the animal, authorities said today…"Bears are generally fearful of humans, and will avoid interactions with people whenever possible," added Brooke Maslo, an assistant professor at Rutgers University’s Department of Ecology, Evolution and Natural Resources.

Read the entire article at NJ.com »