RED BANK: EFFU DRIVING TOWARD NEW GOAL

rb effu 080914 3rb effu 080914 2Red Bank’s Eastside Flag Football Union (EFFU), the defending state champions in fundraising for the annual Snow Bowl tournament to benefit the New Jersey Special Olympics, is in the final stretch of its 2015 campaign. As of Thursday morning, EFFU had raised $16,000 toward its goal of $25,000, with three days left. Last year’s tourney-topping net was $19,765. Want to help put the team over the goal line? Take it here(Photo by Tom Labetti. Click photo to enlarge)

RHODE BANK: STUFFIES FOR THE SUPER BOWL

chowdahousePieHole checks in with Rhode Island’s embassy in Red Bank, the Chowda House, to speak with chef Glenn Kovacs about stuffies. (Photo by Jim Willis. Click to enlarge)

By JIM WILLIS

morsels smallDespite being the smallest of the six states that make up New England, the breadth of unique, hyperlocal culinary contributions from Rhode Island make it a great place to look for inspiration for Super Bowl Sunday’s menu items.

The foods that are sure to make a Rhode Islanders’ mouth water that you’ve probably never heard of include hot wieners, the spinach pie and pizza strips, all polished off with a coffee milk.

But with a nod to the Patriots’ presence in the big game, the one Rhode Island food we’ve got our eyes on for this Super Bowl is the stuffed quahog, aka stuffie.

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MIDDLETOWN: WINGING IT OVER TO CLAUDIE’S

011715 claudies lowensteinKathy Lowenstein in the kitchen of Claudie’s, a gas-station convenience store/chicken joint. (Photos by Susan Ericson. Click to enlarge)

By SUSAN ERICSON

011715 claudies1Really good fried chicken in a gas station quick-stop? Working off of a tip from a friend, PieHole made its way over the Cooper Bridge from Red Bank to Middletown, where we found Claudie’s hidden behind the pumps of a former Sunoco station, now selling fuel branded “76.”

Further concealed in the back of the convenience store, Claudie’s is owned by Craig Ford and Kathy Lowenstein and named for Ford’s mother, Claudette. Ford, who also owns the multi-location Sea Breeze Cleaners, partnered with his employee Lowenstein to create this venture about a year ago.

“Craig is the financial background here, and the chicken is mine,” Lowenstein said.

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RED BANK: EFFU BASKS IN GIANT SPOTLIGHT

rb effu 080914 1rb effu 080914 3Red Bank’s Eastside Flag Football Union (EFFU) made a return trip to the Meadowlands on Saturday to reap its reward as the top fundraising team – out of 135  in the Snow Bowl tournament to benefit the New Jersey Special Olympics back in March. The squad spent the day tailgating, watching the Giants and Steelers warm up for a preseason game, and got to see their team name in lights for raising $19,765. More pix here(Photos by Tom Labetti. Click photo to enlarge)

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RED BANK: EFFU TOP FUNDRAISER AT TOURNEY

effu 032214Red Bank’s Eastside Flag Football Union (EFFU) was the top fundraising team of 135 that participated in the Snow Bowl tournament to benefit the New Jersey Special Olympics at the Meadowlands over the weekend.

The squad raised $19,765 and picked up free passes to a Giants preseason game this summer, when it will be honored with others at halftime.

As for the field action, the EFFUers made it to the to semifinals in the over-35 division, squeezing in some family and tailgating time in between the second and third games of three on Sunday.

Yep, you’re allowed to cheer, folks: “EFFU! EFFU! EFFU!”  (Click photo to enlarge)

RED BANK: EFFU EYES SNOW BOWL RETURN

SNOW BOWL 2013For the second year in a row, Red Bank’s Eastside Flag Football Union (EFFU) is heading to the Meadowlands Sunday for the Snow Bowl tournament to benefit the New Jersey Special Olympics.

The squad raised $13,000 last year; so far this year, its 15 members who’ll be outfitted with jerseys courtesy of the Dublin House – have bagged more than $18,000 en route to a target of $20,000. Interested in putting them across the goal line? Donate here. The video above is from the 2013 effort. (Click photo to enlarge)

RED BANK: EFFU EYES MEADOWLANDS TOURNEY

effu 020214 5effu 020214 3Stephen Dunne hauls in a touchdown pass, above, and a runner heads upfield, below, during the season-ending game for Red Bank’s Eastside Flag Football Union, played at Count Basie Field on Sunday, hours before the Super Bowl kicked off at the Meadowlands.

As it did last year, EFFU plans to send a team to the New York Giants Snow Bowl, a flag football tournament held at MetLife Stadium to raise money for the New Jersey Special Olympics. The Red Bank squad raised $13,000 last year.  (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

LOCAL BARS, WHERE THE GAME TAKES WING

superbowlTommy’s Coal Fired Pizza in Red Bank’s Galleria has a few specials on tap for Sunday’s game. 

By JIM WILLIS

morsels mediumSunday’s big game – Super Bowl XLVIII, in case you’ve been seriously off the grid – will be watched by millions of viewers. But for a spectacle fueled by ads for beer, it’s kind of ironic that relatively few will be taking it in at a bar.

“It’s more of a family and kids event that people like to watch at home” says Tom Ganley, bartender at The Globe in Red Bank.  Unless, of course, the Giants are playing.

“When the Giants play in the Super Bowl, we’re packed,” says Ganley.

Still, if you’re headed out to a local bar on Sunday, besides having some decent elbow room, you can expect some specials. PieHole surveyed a few watering holes that we think are well-suited to football viewing.

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MIDDLETOWN: A GRAVE SUPER BOWL ISSUE

lombardiVince Lombardi’s headstone at Mount Olivet Cemetery in Middletown, as seen in 2011. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

With the Super Bowl scheduled to be played in New Jersey for the first time ever this weekend, the superintendent of the Middletown cemetery where Vince Lombardi is buried wants the game trophy that’s named for the legendary football coach to pay a graveside visit.

“Bring the trophy here” to Mount Olivet Cemetery, Ed Cardoza told the New York Daily News. “It’s so close now. As far as I know, it’s never been here to his grave. On the hundredth anniversary of his birth last June, there was supposed to be a big memorial that sort of fizzled out. This would be perfect.”

Cardoza plans to be in Manhattan to plead his case Wednesday when the Vince Lombardi Trophy arrives at NFL headquarters by FedEx, the News reports.

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RED BANK: FLYING THEIR COLORS IN THE PEWS

Congregants wore their team colors at Sunday’s ‘Jerseys for Jesus’ celebration at Pilgrim Baptist Church in Red Bank.  (Photos by Peter Lindner. Click to enlarge)

By DAN NATALE

“You can have fun and worship Jesus at the same time,” says Reverend Terrence Porter, of Red Bank’s Pilgrim Baptist Church. And for the third year running, Porter and his flock demonstrated that belief once again Sunday with their annual ‘Jerseys for Jesus’ pre-Super Bowl celebration of faith and football.

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JERSEYS FOR JESUS

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altarSunday was ‘Jerseys for Jesus’ day at Pilgrim Baptist Church in Red Bank, where congregants were encouraged to sport their team colors. (Photos by Peter Lindner. Click to enlarge)

SAY CHEESE! LOMBARDI GRAVE A SUPER DRAW

lombardiFamed football coach Vince Lombardi’s headstone at Mount Olivet Cemetery in Middletown. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

Step into the main office of Middletown’s Mount Olivet Cemetery wielding a camera, and it doesn’t take more than a ‘hello’ for secretary JoAnn Christopher to figure out why you’ve come.

“Here for Lombardi?” she asks.

With a Super Bowl matchup Sunday between the Pittsburgh Steelers and legendary coach Vince Lombardi‘s former team, the Green Bay Packers, Lombardi, who’s buried at Mount Olivet, is more of an attraction than usual.

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SUPER BOWL-BOUND RBC GRAD GIVES BACK

donald-brown-rbcRBC shows its pride with a banner hung outside the school’s Broad Street entrance.

brown-donaldRookie Indianapolis Colts running back Donald Brown is headed to Super Bowl XLIV this weekend.

Sportswriter Steve Edelson of the Asbury Park Press had a piece over the weekend about the Red Bank Catholic graduate.

It touches on a leadership conference that the Atlantic Highlands resident was organizing for Shore Conference football players even as he was about to be drafted into the NFL last year.

It also zeroes in on Brown’s desire to donate $2,000 to Red Bank’s Lunch Break soup kitchen in the days leading up to the AFC Championship game against the Jets last week:
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