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New Jersey 2011 Jazz Society Jazzfest

Each year since 1976, the New Jersey Jazz Society has presented Jazzfest, one of the best mainstream jazz festivals in the entire metropolitan area.  This year is no exception as this popular jazz festival presents nine hours of great music in the air conditioned comfort of two concert halls plus outdoor entertainment, a food court and vendors selling everything from hard-to-find CDs to crafts and interesting merchandise. Jazzfest will take place on the campus of the College of Saint Elizabeth in Morristown, New Jersey on Saturday, June 11th from Noon to 9:00 p.m.

The afternoon lineup includes:

· The Winard Harper Sextet with special guest Phillip Harper and a rare reunion of the renowned Harper Brothers.

· The always entertaining Jay Leonhart joined by Harry Allen on saxophone and Joe Cohn on guitar.

· The swinging sounds of the Jazz Lobsters Big Band featuring Carrie Jackson on vocals and Larry McKenna on Tenor Sax.

· And the ever popular Ken Peplowski Quartet.

In the food court, the trad sounds of Emily Asher’s Garden Party will fill the air and the virtuoso trombonist will be joined by Dan Levinson on reeds, Bria Skonberg on Trumpet, Jared Engel on Banjo and John Phillip on Sousaphone.

The evening concert kicks off at 6:00 p.m. with the exciting vocals and guitar of Allan Harris and his Quartet followed by the critically acclaimed Ellington Legacy Band under the leadership of Edward Kennedy Ellington II. The Legacy Band also includes Norman Simmons on piano and Virginia Mayhew on Tenor Saxophone. Also at the evening concert, the New Jersey Jazz Society will honor Mayor Mary Anna Holden of Madison, and Jon Brauer and Anthony Ferrara of Toyota of Morristown.

Most of the music takes place in two venues, Dolan Hall in the Annunciation Center and the Octagon Theatre right next door. As an extra bonus, there will be a variety of vendors offering a wide selection of food, hard to find records, jazz CDs, art and crafts of all kinds. Admission to the craft and food court is free.

Jazzfest is made possible through the generous support of Toyota of Morristown, RXR Realty, the Star-Ledger, WBGO Jazz99FM, Hot House Magazine, Songbirds Agency, Hullarious Productions and the Madison Arts and Culture Alliance.


SPECIAL ROOM RATE FOR JAZZFEST ATTENDEES

The Best Western Morristown Inn is the official festival hotel and offers a special discount room rate for attendees of the festival. The Morristown Inn is located just two miles from the College. For reservations, call 973-540-1700.

ORDER TICKETS BY JUNE 9 FOR SAVINGS

The College of Saint Elizabeth is on Route 124 (36 Madison Avenue) just a couple miles east of Route 287 in Morris Township, New Jersey. Tickets for Jazzfest are only $55.00 in advance, and $70.00 at the gate. New Jersey Jazz Society members enjoy a special rate available through the website. Full time students with valid ID are only $10.00 at the gate. Parking is free and train travel is easy with a station right at the college gate.  The gates open at 11:30 a.m. and the music begins at noon. For more information on tickets and directions visit the New Jersey Jazz Society website (www.njjs.org) or call the NJJS Hotline at 800-303-NJJS (6557).

MEDICAL MARIJUANA CASE UP NEXT FOR COURT

NORML supports the right of adults to use marijuana responsibly, whether for medical or personal purposes - for the Grateful Web

The marijuana she smokes every two waking hours makes life bearable for Angel Raich.  It eases the pain from an inoperable brain tumor, scoliosis and several other permanent disabilities.  It's the only thing her doctors will prescribe, because she has severe allergies that cause violent reactions to traditional medicine.

 

In Oakland, Calif., where Raich lives, that's no problem.  A 1996 state law permits patients to grow and smoke marijuana on doctors' recommendations.

 

But on Monday, the U.S.  Supreme Court will hear arguments in a case that's likely to settle a conflict between that California law and a 1970 federal ban on illegal drugs.

 

The Justice Department says federal authority is supreme in this matter, and the Drug Enforcement Administration already has raided one California patient's house and destroyed her cannabis plants.  If the court favors the government's view, more raids would follow in the 11 mostly Western states that have legalized medical marijuana.

 

Anti-drug groups support the federal government, saying approving medical marijuana could boost support for the recreational use of drugs.

 

Raich and her supporters say medical marijuana is a matter for the states to decide, and for doctors to decide for their patients.

 

"Without cannabis, my life would be a death sentence," Raich, 39, says on a Web site about her struggle.  "Cannabis was responsible for getting me out of my wheelchair and restoring mobility on the whole right side of my body.  For years I felt as if I were suffering in hell.  I will not go back to hell for anyone or anything."

The case is one of the most watched on the Supreme Court's docket this term, one that involves the justices in a high-profile social issue and tests court conservatives' commitment to a line of decisions that restrain federal intrusion into state matters.

It began in California in 2002, when DEA officers raided the Oroville home of Diane Monson, who was growing marijuana in her garden to ease back pain.  The raid at Monson's home - and several others - was tied to a crackdown on medical marijuana inspired in part by the war on terrorism.  President Bush has said the illegal drug trade helps finance terrorists.

Under Chief Justice William H.  Rehnquist, the high court generally has favored state authority over federal influence, establishing a long line of cases that have reduced Congress' authority to regulate interstate commerce.

But the Supreme Court took a stab at curbing marijuana use in 2001 when it ruled against clubs that distributed medical marijuana, which the clubs had deemed a "medical necessity." The ruling forced Raich's supplier to close but left unsettled whether federal authorities could block states from permitting marijuana to be used for medical reasons.