PASTA, POULTRY & GOOD DEEDS ON THE SIDE

DSC_0128The most eagerly anticipated touch football event of the season takes place on November 26, when the annual Turkey Bowl raises funds for Jason’s Dream for Kids, at Thompson Middle School in Middletown.

donegoodlogoMaintaining the available blood supply here in the most densely populated state of the union is serious business — which is not to say that the dedicated staff at  Central Jersey Blood Center doesn’t get to have a little fun at certain times of the year.

Following a Halloween interval in which they helped Phoenix Productions preview the bloody operetta Sweeney Todd and solicited donations from the thousands who marched and shambled in Asbury Park’s NJ Zombie Walk, the CJBC van returns to Red Bank today, November 11, for a Veterans Day blood drive hosted at the Pearl Street location of Arrow Limousine.

Scheduled for 9am to 2pm, the blood drive offers an additional incentive to registered donors: a chance to win a “Dare to Dream” prize package that includes a chauffered Thanksgiving family excursion for up to six people, with tickets to see Disney On Ice at the IZOD Center in East Rutherford.

Donors can register or obtain additional information at 732-747-4844 — and we’re serving up five more full courses of Done Good right around the corner.

SATURDAY: Spaghetti Dinner at K of C Red Bank. Even as not-for-profit organizations continue to brainstorm ever more star-studded, sophisticated and creative vehicles for fundraising, there’s no denying that the good old Spaghetti Dinner (and its early-to-rise cousin, the Pancake Breakfast) remains a favorite for a good reason, and any number of Done Good causes.

This Saturday evening, November 12, the Knights of Columbus Red Bank Council 3187 twirls the fork for their annual dinner event, with the public invited to enjoy sketties and meatballs in a community dining experience at the Council’s hall (which happens to be in Fair Haven). A $16 per person ticket — discounted to $11 for seniors and children under 12 — also includes salad, dessert, coffee, wine and soda, served up between the hours of 5 to 8pm. Proceeds support the K of C’s charitable efforts in the greater Red Bank community throughout the holiday season and beyond.

Friday, November 18: Silver Chef Throw-Down at McLoone’s. The event’s title suggests a crossfire of airborne paring knives, pots and pans straight out of Hell’s Kitchen. But while the competition is no less intense, this entirely civilized fundraising event will see a trio of contestants face off toward a mutual goal: the Education Foundation of Little Silver and its efforts “to purchase very specific pieces of technology for use at the two public schools.”

In the 7pm event hosted at McLoone’s Rum Runner in Sea Bright — owned, of course, by Little Silver’s Tim and Beth McLoone — LS teachers Tim Russoniello and John McGrade will enter the friendly field of compote combat against Joe Racioppi, executive chef at McLoone’s Pier House in Long Branch. It goes without saying that the borough’s kids will be the winners, with ticketholders enjoying the best of the participating chefs’ kitchen kung fu. Email for tickets and additional info.

Saturday, November 26: 12th Annual Turkey Bowl in Middletown. After Turkey Time and all the attendant trimmings, it becomes necessary to work off the excess stuffing —  and nothing fits the bill like Monmouth County’s largest touch football tournament, fielding its 12th annual edition for the benefit of Jason’s Dreams For Kids Foundation, the Red Bank-based nonprofit that grants wishes to terminally and chronically ill kids.

Presented by the athletic charity event foundation Play 2 Win and hosted this year on the playing field at Thompson Middle School in Middletown, the Turkey Bowl is “a seven-on-seven, two hand touch, bracketed football tournament that has become a local tradition and can’t-miss event” for scores of “armchair quarterbacks, weekend warriors, and those looking to revisit their glory days.” It’s also an institution that’s evolved from a neighborhood game into a fundraising vehicle that’s collected more than $250,000 for seriously ill children since 1999.

Approximately 20 teams of 10 to 16 adult players are scheduled to take part in the rain-or-shine tourney beginning at 9am, with each team donation of $1,000 getting team shirts, knit caps, and food and beverages courtesy of the American Culinary Federation (ACF) Jersey Shore Chef’s Association. To register a team or for sponsorship opportunities contact Jeanne Moir at 848-456-3055, or email info@play2winfoundation.org.  For more information about the Turkey Bowl, take it right here.

Sunday, November 27: 11th Annual Navesink Challenge. Not to be outdone by the armchair quarterbacks and weekend warriors,  the Jersey Shore Running Club (JSRC) — another organization that’s not afraid to get out into the brisk late-autumn air for a worthy cause —  teams up once more with the Middletown Youth Athletic Association (MYAA) to host the eleventh annual Navesink Challenge.

Billed as one of New Jersey’s premier running events, the Challenge traces a scenic path along the Navesink River, with the tree-ringed precincts of Middletown’s Bodman Park a lovely start/finish point for an event that includes a 15K run (start time 10am) and a 5K run/walk that commences immediately after. There are several awards for participants, as well as an official Navesink Challenge long sleeve technical shirt for each contestant — and all participants and guests are welcome at “the most fun post race party in New Jersey,” hosted at Navesink Hook & Ladder, Monmouth Avenue in Middletown. Register online here, or in person at Road Runner Sports in Shrewsbury on Saturday, November 26 between the hours of 1 and 4pm.

Wednesday, November 30: Friends of Different Learners at RFH. The Lower Library inside Rumson-Fair Haven Regional High School will be the setting for a special discussion on the challenges of ADD/ADHD in adulthood, presented by the school’s Special Services Department in conjunction with the PTSA committee Friends of Different Learners. Presented free of charge and open to all area residents, the presentation “will work to dispel the myths surrounding ADD/ADHD, to help parents and families become aware of the challenges for their children who are or are becoming young adults with ADD/ADHD, and to discuss the strategies and supports available.”

Guest speaker for the 7pm event will be Eva O’Malley, Founder and Coordinator of Monmouth/ Ocean CHADD (Children and Adults with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder) and a Certified Parent to Parent Teacher whose workshop “will aim to help families address the changing needs their child experiences as they move beyond high school and into post-secondary learning environments and the workplace.” Contact PTSA Special Education Committee Chair Sarah Maris at 732-747-6922 for more information.