Independent Datebook, Oct. 21

• Temple Shalom, 5 Ayrmont Lane, Aberdeen Township, will host a blood and platelet drive from 2-8 p.m. Oct. 28 in conjunction with RWJ Barnabas Health and Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital. Appointments are strongly encouraged. Visit rwjuhdonorclub.org or call 732-235-8100, ext. 221, or call Howard Scheines at  732-692-3345. Donors must bring a photo ID; eat and drink prior to donating. Individuals are not eligible to donate blood or platelets if they have been exposed to or cared for a COVID-19 patient in the last 14 days.

• Holmdel Community United Church of Christ is sponsoring a multi-family yard sale from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Oct. 24 at 40 W. Main St. (Route 520), Holmdel. The sale features furniture, toys, sports equipment and household items. New craft items will also be available.

• The Monmouth Civic Chorus will present a virtual performance of “Joy to the World: From Our Homes to Yours” at 4 p.m. Dec. 20. This is a free event. Email marketing@monmouthcivicchorus.org with the subject line “Joy to the World” to register.  The virtual chorus of more than 60 voices will be joined by celebrated baritone Kenneth Wasser.

• Embroiderers’ Guild of America – Monmouth Chapter is dedicated to teaching and sharing the joys of needlework. The organization welcome stitchers of all levels. Evening stitchers will meet via Zoom on the first Monday of each month at 7 p.m. Day stitchers will meet via Zoom on the third Thursday of each month at 10 a.m. Details: Toni, 732-462-5540, or visit website:www.mcega.org

• The Monmouth County Park System will present Nature Lecture Series: Raccoons in Your Backyard from 7-8 p.m. Oct. 22 at the Freneau Woods Park Visitor Center, Aberdeen Township. Join a naturalist and learn about these mammals that are smart, adaptable and very inquisitive. Free. Details: 732-842-4000.

• The Monmouth County Park System will present a 19th century woodworking demonstration from noon to 3 p.m. Oct. 24 at Historic Longstreet Farm, Holmdel.
Watch a carpenter use 19th century woodworking and carving tools during this demonstration. Free. Details: 732-842-4000.

• The Monmouth County Park System will present Seashell Sunday from 1-2 p.m. Oct. 25 at Bayshore Waterfront Park Activity Center, Middletown. See an assortment of mollusks, crustaceans and cool beach finds and artifacts while learning where shells come from and how to collect them without harming the environment. Bring unidentified or interesting finds to share with a naturalist. Free. Details: 732-842-4000.

• The Monmouth County Library is offering a weekly virtual bereavement meeting for all
those who have lost a loved one and are navigating the maze of emotions and trying to make decisions in a new way. The virtual meetings are led by Beth Stamp, a support facilitator, and provide an opportunity for people to share experiences, feelings and ideas.
Sessions are conducted on Webex and registration is possible on Eventkeeper in order to receive information on how to access the meetings, held Wednesdays at 6:45 p.m.
Details: Email mcl@monmouthcountylib.org

• New Jersey Blood Services, which provides blood for local patients, is looking for volunteers whose tasks will include assisting donors with registration and/or at the refreshment area. No medical background necessary. Must have transportation. All training is provided. Details: Call or text Sharon Zetts at 732-850-8906, Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

• Residents struggling with substance use issues may call 1-844-ReachNJ to speak with counselors ready to offer assistance 24 hours a day, seven days a week. ReachNJ is a free, confidential hotline that provides individuals with concerns about their own or a family member’s substance use immediate help and treatment referrals. The help line is always answered by a live specialist.

Items for the Datebook may be sent to news@njexaminer.com. Please send items at least two weeks prior to a scheduled event.