Celestine and Wallace Woods in their alter-egos as Santa and Mrs. Claus, above, and former pro footballer Jarvis Green, below. (Photos by Dan Natale. Click to enlarge)


Former pro defensive end Jarvis Green has been on a rampage of goodwill lately, and on Thursday sacked another location with Christmas cheer: Red Bank.

Jarvis, who put in eight seasons with the New England Patriots, is affiliated with a New Orleans-based shrimp consortium that this week joined with the Food Bank of Monmouth and Ocean Counties to help feed the hungry and spread joy.

On Thursday evening, following a visit to help feed victims of Hurricane Sandy in Ocean County, he stopped in at the Boys and Girls Club of Monmouth County and Lunch Break, just a couple of doors apart on Doctors James Parker Boulevard, with 100 pounds of shrimp.

“That’s a lot of shrimp,” said Green.

Jarvis flew in from his home in Louisiana to help out with Sandy relief, he said. He said he sympathizes with victims of the devastation.

“I lost six family members” in Hurricane Katrina, he said.  “To this day we are still doing work from Hurricane Katrina, and up here, the destruction is 20 times larger. Here people lost their complete homes. When Hurricane Katrina hit a lot of New Jersey construction people and the police force came out to help.”

“This is the magic that makes it happen year round,” said Carlos Rodriguez executive director at the Food Bank. Noting that Shop Rite also contributed food to the event, he said, “We have the Food Bank bringing partners together, whether it’s private industries or sports celebrities, and our community partners to provide a little bit of hope for families in our community.”

On Green’s arrival at Lunch Break, the Christmas spirit was palpable. Real-life couple Celestine and Wallace Woods were dressed as Santa and Mrs. Claus, making for great photo opportunities. They handed out Beanie babies to all of the young girls and boys. “

It’s so cute the way their faces light up,” said Lindsay Holeman, a teacher of English as a second language and a Lunch Break volunteer.

Celestine Woods said that she and her husband contribute regularly at Lunch Break. “Coming here and volunteering for one day will make you feel better than any paycheck,”she said.

Later on, Green made his way over to the Boys and Girls Club to sign autographs and hang out with the children who were excited to see him. “The kids have never met a celebrity before, so they’ll be really happy to go back to school and tell everyone about it,” said Holeman.

A boatload of shrimp aside, Green said that what’s in your heart that matters.

“Sometimes money is not always the answer,” said Green. “Any kind of services can help. Its about giving back.”