Here are the top New Jersey news stories for Friday:

⬛ NJ university president grilled by Congress after student protest

Jonathan Holloway
Rutgers University President Jonathan Holloway testifies during a hearing of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce regarding pro-Palestinian protests on college campuses on Capitol Hill, Thursday, May 23, 2024, in Washington. (AP Photo/Mariam Zuhaib)

WASHINGTON — The presidents of Northwestern and Rutgers universities defended their decisions to end pro-Palestinian encampments through negotiations rather than police force, telling a House committee on Thursday that they defused the danger without ceding ground to protesters.

The committee’s inquiry expanded to large, public universities, UCLA and Rutgers, after earlier hearings largely focused on private, Ivy League colleges.

“We made a choice — that choice was to engage our students through dialogue as a first option instead of police action,” Holloway said. “We had seen what transpired at other universities and sought a different way.”

⬛ NJ beach badge prices for 2024: How to get the best deals

Barnegat Light beach badges
Photo uploaded by Reddit user aqua_vit

In towns along the Jersey Shore, lifeguards hit the beaches starting on Memorial Day Weekend. The holiday weekend is also when towns begin charging folks to step on their sand.

Municipalities along the Jersey Shore have published their pricing for badges to access their beaches in 2024.

And if you plan to visit the same beach several times this summer, you can save some money by purchasing a seasonal badge.

⬛ Yes, tents and canopies are still allowed on these NJ beaches

Canva/Townsquare Media illustration
Canva/Townsquare Media illustration

A growing number of New Jersey shore towns have banned tents and canopies on the beach.

North Wildwood and Toms River were among the first towns to enact a ban. In many cases, the bans are due to beach shrinkage.

Severe beach erosion has cut down the length of the beach, and towns still want to be able to accommodate as many sun worshippers as possible.

⬛ New Jersey hit by another earthquake

Canva/USGS/Townsquare Media illustration
Canva/USGS/Townsquare Media illustration

The USGS Is reporting a magnitude 2.9 earthquake WSW of Gladstone around 3:50 a.m. Friday.

Reports show it was felt around Hunterdon, Somerset and Morris counties but also as far south as Middlesex and north into Sussex.

It does not appear to be an aftershock from the April earthquake in the same area.

⬛ Fallen signal wire to blame for NJ Transit suspension, Murphy mad

Screen at Penn Station New York showing delays 5/23/24
Screen at Penn Station New York showing delays 5/23/24 (Listener submitted)

NJ Transit riders had a better commute Thursday morning after a complete suspension of service on the Northeast Corridor and the North Jersey Coast Line on Wednesday but it was not good enough for Gov. Phil Murphy who blasted Amtrak on his social media.

Amtrak, which maintains the Northeast Corridor, said it restored power on one track between New York and Newark late Wednesday night allowing for “minimal travel” following repair to a fallen overhead wire in Kearny.

UPDATED: Memorial Day Parades in New Jersey 2024 (alphabetical)

New Jersey remembers those who made the ultimate sacrifice on Memorial Day with parades, solemn services, reenactments and fairs. Most events take place Monday, May 27 unless otherwise noted and are subject to change without notice here.

Add your community's parade to our list with an email to

Gallery Credit: Dan Alexander

Why you shouldn't visit the Jersey Shore this summer

10 reasons why you might want to rethink that visit...

Gallery Credit: Mike Brant - Townsquare Media

Why Jersey Shore locals must embrace the Benny's and Shoobie's of New Jersey

Five reasons why the Jersey Shore wouldn't be the same without them.

Gallery Credit: Mike Brant


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