Princeton WannaBe Blog

I'm not a real historian.   I didn't grow up in Princeton.    I don't have an Ivy League education.   

I'm a total Princeton WannaBe. 

Still, I gush about loving the heart of Princeton as much as I can!



The 2014 Season is Off With A Bang!

Spring walking tours have begun!  We couldn't be more thrilled to be named the #1 Attraction in Princeton by the Huffington Post!  I KNOW!

Every Saturday in April and May  there is a public walking tour at 1:00pm!  Private bus tours, ghost tours, secret supper clubs, scavenger hunts and private group outings are available everyday year round!


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On Pi Day, You're Going to Want to Be Around Princeton!




On March 14, 2014 at 8:00pm

the entire town of Princeton will prove it by simulating the 1,000 Firefly


Did you know similar oscillators
(things that cycle automatically and repeatedly) can mutually synchronize without any single corrdinating force or leader?  Next time you're catching fireflies, you'll notice their lights start to synchronize before your eyes!


3.14 Reasons Why Princeton is Simulating the Famous Experiment on Pi Day:


1).  It’s Einstein’s Birthday and Albert loved to bike: 

Einstein never knew how to drive a car – he biked or walked wherever he went!  He resided in Princeton for over 20 years and March 14th was his birthday.  We’re kicking off Pi Day celebrations with a biking event that artfully celebrates math and science.   

2). Einstein loved math, science, art and social activism: 

At 8pm 159 Princeton residents will arrive at Princeton Recreational Center Track and attach unique LED lights for their bikes.  The lights are synchronized so as participants bike 3.14 miles on the track, the LED lights will create an artificial system of blinking lights that mutually synchronize to create a magical display.  Why 159 lights?  Because that's the next three digits of Pi, silly!

The visual performance will be astounding but organizers hope the display will also call attention to individual acts as a component of a larger dynamic system with its own unique patterns and qualities.   The practical outcome will be to provide general awareness/promotion of biking as well as essential safety equipment for Princeton’s residents who rely on bikes to commute to and from work. 


3).   It’s a chance to celebrate the Princeton scientists who influenced this theory:   

Norbert Wiener (who was recruited by Princeton’s Oswald Veblen to Aberdeen Proving Grounds) and Art Winfree, (who was a PU Graduate Student ’70 and author of Biological Clocks).  Both inspired the works of Yoshiki Kuramoto who first articulated a mathematical model that described how this phenomena occurs.  Other Princeton influences for Mr. Kuramoto include Princeton resident Colin Pittendrigh (1918-1996) “the father of biological clocks”:  PU 1947-69; Victor Bruce (1920-2009) - pioneer in research on circadian rhythms; Steven Strogatz (student of Winfree at Cornell): the book SYNC (2003); David Rueter (artist): Minneapolis 2012 (1,000 cyclists), Chicago ‘13 (250)


3.14)   It’s Another Example of Princeton Businesses, Academic Institutions, Residents and Local Government come together to make a one of a kind town!




(Photo'd here are two major figures are Mayor Liz Lempert and Steve Kruse, champions of a more bikeable Princeton!  Along with the members of the Princeton Pedestrian/Bicyclist Advisory Committee they dreamed up this fabulous idea!)

     Inclement weather date is July 22nd! 

Why?   Because 22/7 is the day/month format and the fraction 227 is a common approximation of π, silly!


We have an infinite number of clever events scheduled for Pi Day Princeton 2014.  The list is always growing but here's a sneak peek:


Need more info on the experiment?  Here you go:



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Find Your Inner George Washington When You Get Out in That Snow Today!


Today's beautiful but brutally cold snow storm is nearly identical to the conditions George and his troops would have had to face during the Battle of Princeton on January 3, 1777.

Today is the perfect day to close your eyes a couple of times and imagine yourself as a patriot in 1777:

You're in battle, wanting to go home for the winter tired but exuberent about your recent win in Trenton.  When you arrive to a farmer's property in Princeton at 7am with General Hugh Mercer, you see that you're out numbered 5:1 by the British.  Within 15 minutes of fighting, your General Hugh Mercer is stabbed and appears to be dying ....the second in command is shot in the face.  The British start advancing so you start to run up a small hill.  All appears to be lost but as you get to the top of the hill, General George Washington arrives on his horse!   He promises more troops are on their way and then he charges back into the fighting - leading from the front as he always did.  You follow and participate in a victory which historians now call the turning point of the Revolutionary War.

Today, find your inner George Washington and celebrate the anniversary in a way that really honors those patriots!




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Here's a snippet of my brief but thrilling interview with Santa!:

ME:   Can you tell me the favorite foods of Rudolph and the Team for Christmas Eve? 

SANTA:  Well, I know you like the inside scoop on everything so I'll tell you the truth.   Rudolph and the Team like more than just carrots.



(He mentioned lichen too but that's pretty tough to find.  Snce they are traveling throughout the world and experiencing every season, it's okay to add any of the above items!)

ME:  WOW!  Thank you Santa.  I'll let everyone in Princeton know on Christmas Eve!


(And that was the end of the interview.  What an experience!)

(Here's more info on the reindeer diet!)

(Here's a quick link to the NORAD Santa Tracker too!)



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Everyone knows about the famous Boston Tea Party, but did you know days later, on a cold night in January, 1774, Princeton College students had their own demonstration against the King?  TRUE!

The students broke into the College's storeroom, and then, as described by student Charles Beatty, "gathered all the steward's winter store of tea and having made a fire on the campus we there burned near a dozen pound, tolled the bell, and made many spirited resolves."

They also made an effigy of Massachusetts Governor Hutchinson, tied a tea canister around its neck, and burned it in front of Nassau Hall. Students subsequently continued their agitations, including paying nocturnal visits in groups of 40 to local townspeople rumored to be tea drinkers, seizing their stock of tea, and burning it!

(Did you know the pair of sycamore trees standing on the Maclean House lawn are called the "Stamp Act trees?  TRUE!  They were planted in celebration of the repeal of the Stamp Act and were vigorous saplings when Washington's troops scattered three British regiments at the Battle of Princeton!  TRUE!)


Philadelphia has done a better job of marketing her significance during the Revolutionary War but ask any real historian and they'll tell you, Princeton was the reason for the revolutionary season!


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