Tri-Town News Datebook, Oct. 10


• Pleasant Grove United Methodist Church, 124 East Pleasant Grove Road, Jackson, will celebrate its 171st year of serving God and community. All members of the community are invited to attend a celebration service at 1 p.m. Oct. 21. The guest speaker will be the Rev. Dr. Marion Jackson. Light refreshments to follow. Details: Pastor Denise Tiedemann, 848-667-3631, or Doris Hatfield, 732-928-0063.


• The League of Women Voters will hold a candidates forum for the Monmouth County Board of Freeholders at 7 p.m. Oct. 24 at the Monmouth County Library Headquarters, 125 Symmes Drive, Manalapan. The candidates running for one full three-year term are Republican Susan M. Kiley, Democrat Amber Gesslein, independent candidate Brendan Maroney and independent candidate John P. Curley. The candidates running for a one-year
unexpired term are Republican Gerard P. Scharfenberger and Democrat Larry Luttrell. Community members are invited to come and listen to the candidates’ views on the issues.


• The Church of Saint Monica Gift Auction will be held on Nov. 9 at AMVETS Hall, 1290 Route 571, Jackson. Doors will open at 5 p.m. and calling will begin at 7 p.m. There will be a chance to win prizes and have fun with family and friends. There will be theme baskets, a 50/50 raffle, a lottery tree, food and beverages for purchase, free coffee and tea, and door prizes. All proceeds to benefit the Church of Saint Monica. Donations to the church are also accepted. Advance tickets sales only. For tickets, call Rosalie, 732-928-3961, or Caroline, 732-833-0002.


• Joan’s Reach will host its seventh annual chili cook-off fundraiser from 2-6 p.m. Oct. 13 at the Freehold VFW post, 50 Waterworks Road, Freehold. Tickets: $30 per adult, $5 per child (age 4-12), or $60 per family (parents and immediate children). The cook-off will feature original chili dishes, beverages, and grilled and picnic food. Joan’s Reach raises awareness for perinatal hospice care and provides resources and support for families continuing a pregnancy with a life-limiting prenatal diagnosis. Details:


• The Jackson Library will host “Career Services for Persons with Disabilities” at 2 p.m. Oct. 26. The Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services helps people with disabilities find and maintain employment. Attendees may speak with DVRS counselors at the event to find out more. Registration is required for this free program. To register, call 732-928-4400.


• Jackson Friends of the Library invite community members to “Dining for a Cause” at
Bubbakoo’s Burritos, 355 N. Country Line Road, Jackson, from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Oct. 26.
Organizers said 15 percent of a guest’s receipt will be donated to the Friends. Guests may bring a flier from the library or mention they are supporting the Jackson Friends. The Friends support and advocate for the Ocean County Library in many ways.


• The Jackson Library will host “How to Start a Small Business” at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 24.
Bob Goodyear of Ocean County SCORE will talk about how to start a business.
Registration is required for this free program. To register, call 732-928-4400.


• The Jackson Library, 2 Jackson Drive, Jackson, will host “Immigrant State: Jersey’s Influential Gate” at 2 p.m. Oct. 23. This event will tell New Jersey’s big story of immigration, packed into a little state. Film clips, texts and media coverage will guide participants in a candid discussion about local and national immigration issues.
Registration is required for this free event. To register, call 732-928-4400.


• The Jackson Library will host a variety of programs throughout October: “Coloring for Adults” at 10 a.m. Oct. 16. Create Mexican paper star ornaments in vivid colors. Material provided, along with light refreshments and classical music; “Mindfulness Meditation: On Impermanence” at 3 p.m. Oct. 19. Open to novice and skilled practitioners. Learn to ride the wave of impermanence and change with grace and equanimity through mindfulness. Practice includes teachings, meditations and sitting in silence; “Immigrant State: Jersey’s Influential Gate” at 2 p.m. Oct. 23. New Jersey holds an important part of American’s immigration history. Dr. Carlos Decena from Rutgers University will present film clips, texts, and media coverage on national and statewide issues; “All About Autism Support Group” at 6:30 p.m. Oct. 24. Explore the ways in which autism affects people’s lives. Teen volunteers will run supervised activities for attendees’ children who are 12 or under. Attendees should notify library when registering if they will bring children; “Brain Joggers” at 10:30 a.m. Oct. 29. Exercise your mind by playing games and working puzzles; “South Jersey Ghost Research” at 7 p.m. Oct. 29. South Jersey Ghost Research will host an evening of intrigue, enlightenment and “spiritual” inspiration. Registration is required for these free programs unless otherwise noted. To register, call 732-928-4400.


• The Jackson Library will host “Aging Safely” at 6 p.m. Oct. 17. Learn to avoid scams and legal pitfalls. Members of local law, financial and healthcare firms will assist attendees in avoiding problems as they age. Registration is required for this free program. To register, call 732-928-4400.


• The Monmouth County Park System will host Thompson Park Day from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 14 at Thompson Park, Lincroft. Activities include a scarecrow contest, doggie costume contest, pumpkin painting, wagon rides, entertainment and more. Some activities have a fee. Admission and parking are free. Details: 732-842-4000.


• The sixth annual Howell/Farmingdale 5K run and race walk benefiting CONTACT of Ocean and Monmouth Counties 24/7 crisis intervention and suicide prevention hotline will be held on Oct. 21 at Howell High School, Squankum-Yellowbrook Road, Howell. The course is now certified. The 5K will begin at 9:30 a.m. All ages welcome. Awards to top male and female overall, plus age group awards for 5K run. Special pricing for ages 19 and under. All registration fees discounted when registered by Oct. 17. Details: 732-240-6104 for registration and/or info on becoming a sponsor. Visit for race application form or register online at


• Marty’s Place Senior Dog Sanctuary will host its annual Howl-O-Ween Family Fest from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Oct. 21 (rain date, Oct. 28) at 118 Route 526, Upper Freehold. This fun-filled event is open to the public and anyone can come with children of all ages and dogs of all sizes. There will be a Ruff Mudder Canine Obstacle Course. Dogs of all skill levels are welcome to participate with their owners. There will also be a costume contest for dogs, plus other activities. Details: 609-259-1278 or


• The Jackson Rotary Club will sponsor a bus trip to the Tropicana Casino, Atlantic City, on Oct. 28. Cost of $34 includes transportation, sandwich and beverage on bus, $25 in slot play from the casino and gratuity for the driver. The bus will leave Brookwood Plaza at noon and return to Jackson at 9 p.m. Proceeds benefit Rotary Club charities. To reserve a space, call Tom Barchie at 732-207-4029 or 732-849-6309.


• Boys and girls ages 8-17 may experience a free airplane ride on Oct. 20 as Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) Chapter 315 of the North Jersey Shore hosts a Young Eagles Flight Rally at Monmouth Jet Center, 1717 Route 34, Wall Township. Those attending are asked to enter the airport at Hurley Pond Road west of Route 34 and proceed to the main terminal building, starting at 9:30 a.m. to register for their flight. A parent or guardian who can sign a required parental permission form at that time must accompany students. Flights begin at 10 a.m. and registration closes at 1 p.m. Rain date is Oct. 27. Details:


• Comedian, singer and pianist Steven “Sarge” Pickman will perform at Congregation Ahavat Olam, Howell, at 2 p.m. Oct. 14. The event is open to the public. Tickets may be purchased by calling 732-333-1299. Tickets are $18 for general admission; $36 for priority reserved seating; and $54 for premium reserved seating. There will be a meet and greet reception prior to the show which includes sponsorship seating in the first three rows for $108 (a block of four tickets must be purchased). Pickman will be available after the show to sell and autograph his book “Black Boychik.”


• Ocean County veterans meet monthly to discuss relevant subjects and to plan recreation opportunities. Topics include the transition to civilian life, the VA system, substance use, PTSD/other mental health issues and more. The group meets at 6:30 p.m. on the third Wednesday of each month at Journey to Wellness Center, 25 S. Shore Drive, Toms River.  Details: 732-244-0940 or email [email protected]


• Saint Gabriel’s Church, Marlboro, will host a juried craft and vendor fair on Nov. 11 from
10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Prospective vendors should send name, business name, email, mailing address, phone number and a description of their work with four to six high-quality photos demonstrating sample crafts and wares and table set-ups to Julia A. Oliver at
[email protected]. The table fee is $45. Vendors should not mail payment until they are notified they have been selected to participate.


• The Jackson Library’s knitting group, Knit-Chat-Chain, is seeking donations of yarn and wool. The members of the group create sweaters, hats, scarves and blankets to donate to charity. Yarn donations may be brought to the Circulation Desk during library hours: Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Friday and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Details: 732-928-4400.


• New Jersey Blood Services is in need of volunteers to work blood drives in Ocean and Monmouth counties. Tasks include assisting donors with registration, watching donors for post-donation reactions and responding to their needs. Details: Jan Zepka, 732-616-8741.


Items for the Datebook may be sent to [email protected]. Please submit items at least two weeks prior to a scheduled event.