Tri-Town News Datebook, Aug. 24

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• New Jersey Blood Services, a division of New York Blood Center, will conduct the following blood drives: Aug. 25, Howell Donor Center, 4068 Route 9 South, Howell, 1:30-8:30 p.m.; Aug. 30, Howell Donor Center, 1:30-8:30 p.m.; Aug. 31, Howell Donor Center, 7:45 a.m. to 2:45 p.m. To donate blood or for information on how to organize a blood drive, call 1-800-933-2566. Details: www.nybloodcenter.org

• Crisis hotline volunteers needed for CONTACT of Ocean and Monmouth Counties’ training beginning Sept. 20, twice a week every Tuesday and Thursday for six weeks from 6:30-9:30 p.m. Training (which is free) will be held at St. Luke’s Roman Catholic Church, 1674 Old Freehold Road, Toms River. CONTACT is a 24-hour crisis intervention hotline that also provides information and referral to community resources. All calls are free, confidential and anonymous. Call 732-240-6104 or email [email protected] for additional information and registration.

• The Monmouth County Park System is seeking entries into its upcoming Autumn Terrains exhibit. The exhibit, to be held from Sept. 16 through Nov. 19 at the Gallery in the Thompson Park Creative Arts Center, Lincroft, will reflect the palette, essence and aesthetics of the autumn season. Nontraditional and traditional renderings are welcome. Additional information and an entry form are available on The Gallery at Thompson Park page at www.MonmouthCountyParks.com. Entry deadline is Aug. 26.

• New Jersey Blood Services, a division of New York Blood Center, is conducting blood drives which are open to the public. The following drives are scheduled: Sept. 1, Howell Donor Center, 4068 Route 9, Howell, 1:30-8:30 p.m.; Sept. 6, Howell Donor Center, 1:30-8:30 p.m.; Sept. 7, Howell Donor Center, 7:45 a.m. to 2:45 p.m.; Sept. 8, Howell Donor Center, 1:30-8:30 p.m.; Sept. 13, Howell Donor Center, 1:30-8:30 p.m.; Sept. 14, Howell Donor Center, 7:45 a.m. to 2:45 p.m.; Sept. 15, Howell Donor Center, 1:30-8:30 p.m.; Sept. 20, Howell Donor Center, 1:30-8:30 p.m.; Sept. 21, Howell Donor Center, 7:45 a.m. to 2:45 p.m., Sept. 22, Howell Donor Center, 1:30-8:30 p.m.; Sept. 27, Howell Donor Center, 1:30-8:30 p.m.; Sept. 28, Howell Donor Center, 7:45 a.m. to 2:45 p.m.; Sept. 29, Howell Donor Center, 1:30-8:30 p.m. To donate blood or for information about how to organize a blood drive, call 1-800-933-2566 or visit www.nybloodcenter.org

• The Monmouth County Park System will host Fishing 101 – A Beginner’s Guide to Fishing, Aug. 25 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Manasquan Reservoir, Howell. Learn how to rig, bait, cast and, hopefully, catch a fish. Come and go at any time. Bait and tackle provided. Open to all ages; under 14 with adult. Fishing license required for ages 16 to 69. Stop by the Bait Shop to register. No groups. Free. Details: 732-842-4000.

• The Monmouth County Park System will host Naturalist Walks on Aug. 28 at 9 a.m. at the Manasquan River Greenway, Howell, meet at the Winter Run Activity Center. Join a park system naturalist at the new Winter Run Activity Center property, part of the Manasquan River Greenway and adjacent to the Manasquan Reservoir. Walks are about 45 minutes and 1 mile in length. Sturdy shoes and bug spray are highly recommended. Free. Details: 732-842-4000.

• The Monmouth County Park System will host Concert in the Park: Jukebox Heroes Live with the Mahoney Brothers on Aug. 26 from 7:30-9 p.m. at the Thompson Park Theater Barn, Lincroft. The show includes tributes to the Beatles, Willie Nelson, Neil Diamond, Billy Joel, Roy Orbison, Jerry Lee Lewis and more. Bring lawn chairs or blankets, food and soft drinks. The concert is outdoors; however, if the weather is inclement, the concert will be moved indoors. Free. Details: 732-842-4000.

• The Monmouth County Park System will host the Casual Birder on Sept. 13 at 9 a.m.
at the Manasquan Reservoir Visitor Center, Howell. Join a naturalist for a morning bird walk (approximately 90 minutes). No need to be an expert at identifying birds to enjoy. Free. Details: 732-842-4000.

• The Monmouth County Park System will host Bonsai Day on Sept. 11 from noon to 4 p.m. at Deep Cut Gardens, Middletown. Experience this intricate and ancient art through demonstrations and displays, with experts on hand to answer questions. Presented by the Monmouth County Park System and the Deep Cut Bonsai Society. Admission and parking are free. Details: 732-842-4000.

• The Monmouth County Park System will host a Fall Plant Swap on Sept. 17. Plant intake from 8:30-10 a.m. Plant selection starts at 10 a.m. The event will be held at Tatum Park, Middletown – use the Red Hill Road entrance. Bring perennials in 1-quart, 1-gallon or 2-gallon containers and take home the same size and number of plants. Label all plants. Houseplants may also be exchanged, but no annuals. Free. Details: 732-842-4000.

• The Monmouth County Park System will host the Wind and Sea Festival on Sept. 17 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Bayshore Waterfront Park, Middletown. Celebrate all things water-related such as kayaking, fishing, kite flying, sandcastle building and more during a  family friendly festival. Admission and parking are free. Some activities may have a fee. Parking at the Belford Ferry Terminal. Details: 732-842-4000.

• The Monmouth County Park System will host a Harvest Home Festival on Sept. 25 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Historic Longstreet Farm, Holmdel. This old-fashioned fair is reminiscent of the 1890s. Visitors can enjoy games, wagon rides and live entertainment. Admission and parking are free. Details: 732-842-4000.

• The Monmouth County Park System will host Concert in the Park: A Night of Jazz and Blues on Sept. 30 from 7-8:30 p.m. at the Thompson Park Theater Barn, Lincroft
The roots of blues and jazz music run deep at the Jersey Shore. Listen to talent from the area. Bring chairs or blankets, food and soft drinks. The concert will be held outdoors, but will move indoors if the weather is inclement. All ages welcome; under 18 must be accompanied by an adult. Free. Details: 732-842-4000.

• Women of Color discussion group is an online meeting held once a month (third Tuesday at 5:30 pm) to discuss issues, coping strategies and resources relevant to women of color. Offered by the Mental Health Association in New Jersey. Upcoming meeting dates are Sept. 20, Oct. 18, Nov. 22 and Dec. 20.  Email [email protected] to receive a link.

• “A Gathering of Womyn of Color” is an online group that meets once a month for all LGBTQ womyn of color in the Black, Indigenous, People of Color community. The group is an open discussion of multiple topics. The group meets on the first Thursday of the month at 6 p.m. Upcoming dates are Sept. 1, Oct. 6, Nov. 3 and Dec. 1. Offered by the Mental Health Association in New Jersey, the agency’s PEWS program and the Emotional Support for Families of Color Initiative. To receive a link, email [email protected]

• The DowntownFreehold.com Thursdays Rock concert series takes place each Thursday from 7:30-9:30 p.m. at the Monmouth County Hall of Records plaza, Main Street, Freehold Borough. The concerts are free; bring a lawn chair. The schedule is as follows: Aug. 25, Turnstyles.

• The Freehold Borough Arts Council 2022 Jazz, Blues and More Summer Concert Series will take place every Sunday through August (June 5 through Aug. 28) from 7-9 p.m. at the Downtown Freehold Gazebo, Main Street, Freehold Borough. The concerts are free; bring a lawn chair.

• For individuals who are dealing with depression, bipolar disorder and anxiety, there is support available that is free, confidential and led by a trained facilitator. The Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance meets on Wednesdays from 12:30-2 p.m. at Brighter Days Community Wellness Center, 268 Bennetts Mills Road, Jackson. There are no physicians or therapists in the group, just individuals who live with a mental health condition. Members strive to support to each other and share their stories. Details: Valerie, 610-766-0658, or visit dbsalliance.org

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