Hello Frenchtown,

Congratulations to us! Frenchtown has been awarded a $160,000 grant from the Department of Transportation to improve the first stretch of Ridge Road (we’ll be seeking a grant for the second section next year). Add to that the reconstruction of Horseshoebend Road and repair of storm damage done to Creek Road, there’ll be a lot of roadwork going on during the summer and into the fall.

Here are some of upcoming events this week you should know about.

On Saturday, May 17, 1-3 p.m. the Frenchtown Free Public Library is holding an Open House. Come see all the free things the library offers. There will be a raffle (the items are top secret!), face painting and a craft for children, as well as light refreshments. Hope to see you there!

On Monday, May 19, the Frenchtown Green Team meets at Borough Hall at 7 p.m. On the agenda are discussions of the Mayor’s Wellness Campaign (Fit Frenchtown events scheduled for June and beyond), a town-wide yard sale, cancellation of this year’s Green Fair, and what’s next for the Green Team. The meeting is open to all, and especially prospective members. Last year the state’s Sustainable Jersey program awarded us “Bronze Certification” for achieving community sustainability actions. This year the group is eyeing “Silver,” Sustainable Jersey’s highest designation. Come be part of that achievement.

Speaking of volunteering, Frenchtown’s Environmental Commission needs new members. The EC is hard at work in the Frenchtown Preserve, creating deer exclosures (to protect young trees from the marauding appetite of those gentle critters), controlling invasive species, restoring native plants, and assessing the preserve as a destination for birders. The EC is also assembling an Environmental Resources Inventory of Frenchtown, mapping species, habitat, soils and other eco-features of our community. If you would like to help shape our environmental future — the EC meets once a month — please give me a call (908-229-4822). I’ll hook you up.

Tuesday, May 20 at 6 p.m. is the next Dana dinner. Jointly hosted at Lovin’ Oven (69 Trenton Ave.) by restaurant owners Mike and Julie, by Frenchtown Acupuncture’s Matt Branham, and by the Cross River Meditation Center Sangha, the dinner is a town-wide potluck intended to bring together the entire community. “Dana” is an ancient Pali word meaning generosity. The dinner is an opportunity to share Frenchtown’s great generosity of spirit. If you can, bring a dish and a practical gift. If you cannot, show your generosity by simply being present. After the meal, those who have need for the gifts can take them home.

Looking a few weeks ahead: on Saturday, June 7, we will collect debris, tires and trash along the riverbank west of the bike path. The cleanup is sponsored by the Frenchtown Green Team and Environmental Commission, hosted by the Delaware River Basin Commission, and led by AmeriCorps NJ Watershed Ambassador Lindsay Blanton. This is a daunting endeavor, and we’ll need all hands on deck to make a difference, but if you walk or bike the path you know how bad things have gotten. Please clear your calendar and plan to help. Sign up online at https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10C0F4AAFAD2CA2F85-drcanal. We all know how important the river is to our community. Here’s our chance to show we care about its well being.

Hope to see you around town soon.