• Thompson Park Day will be held from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 16 at Thompson Park, 805 Newman Springs Road (Route 520), Lincroft. Activities include children’s races, archery, pumpkin painting, wagon rides and more. Highlights include a scarecrow contest and a Spooktacular Jack O’ Lantern contest. Details for these contests are available online at www.MonmouthCountyParks.com. Some activities require a fee. Admission and parking are free.
• New Jersey Blood Services, a division of New York Blood Center, is conducting blood drives in the area which are open to the public. The following drives are scheduled: Oct. 7, St. Dorothea Church, 240 Broad St., Eatontown, 12:30-6:30 p.m.; and Oct. 25, Lincroft Bible Church, 790 Newman Springs Road, Lincroft, 1-7 p.m. To donate blood or for information on how to organize a blood drive, call 1-800-933-2566. Details: www.nybloodcenter.org
• Rutgers Master Gardeners of Monmouth County will present Birds, Bugs and Beyond,
Celebrating Nature, a free festival for children of all ages, outdoors from noon to 4 p.m. Oct. 8 (rain or shine) at the Rutgers Cooperative Extension Agriculture Building, 4000 Kozloski Road, Freehold Township. There will be nature-inspired activities, crafts and educational displays, 4-H animals, insects and reptiles, and more. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Details: 732-303-7614.
• The Monmouth County Retired Educators Association will meet at 11 a.m. Oct. 11 at the Waterview Pavilion, Belmar. Prior to the meeting, PAC endorsed candidates running for office will be available for members to meet and voice their concerns. Members are encouraged to bring a non-perishable donation for the food bank. For luncheon reservations, contact email@example.com. Checks payable to MCREA for $30 should be mailed to Sue Shrott, 162 Harbor Circle Drive, Freehold, NJ 07728 and received before Sept. 30. Check the MCREA Facebook page or website for updates. New members are always welcome.
• The 26th annual Monmouth County Clerk’s Archives and History Day will be held on Oct. 1 at the Robert J. Collins Arena at Brookdale Community College, Lincroft, beginning at 9 a.m. The event is organized by the Monmouth County Clerk’s Archives Division. More than 50 local and state historical societies, museums and archives will set up tables relating to the mission and activities of their organizations. All are invited to attend the free event. To view the preliminary program, visit MonmouthCountyClerk.com/Archives
• The Holiday Made in Monmouth event will take place from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Dec. 10 in the Robert J. Collins Arena on the campus of Brookdale Community College, Route 520, Lincroft (the original date was Dec. 3). Vendor registration will open at 10 a.m. Sept. 27. Details: 732-431-7387.
• Dove Hospice Services of New Jersey is seeking volunteers who are willing to make a difference with individuals who are experiencing the challenge of end-of-life. Volunteers dedicate a small amount of time each month to provide companionship-friendly visits; play cards; sewing, knitting or craft projects; music enrichment; pet therapy; and office or administrative assistance. Dove Hospice Services is also seeking veterans who are interested in providing compassion, support and outreach to fellow veterans and their families. Visits can be made to individuals living in facilities or private homes. Ongoing training is provided. Volunteers must be 18 or older and a COVID vaccine is required. Details: Michelle Rutigliano, 732-405-3035.
• The Guild of Creative Art, 620 Broad St., Shrewsbury, is hosting a September solo exhibit featuring works by Paul Hansen from Sept. 3-28. Viewing hours are Tuesday through Friday, 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Details: 732-741-1441.
• The Middletown Township Public Library will host the following programs for children and teenagers: Teen Creative Writing, Mystery Edition, Sept. 22 at 4 p.m. Write a mystery story at the library’s new creative writing club for teens; Cartooning Lessons with local artist and author Mike Dawson, Sept. 26 at 11 a.m.; “Move to the Music Bollywood Style,” a Diwali celebration, Sept. 26 at 6 p.m. Explore Indian music and dance styles, and learn about the unique relationship Americans share with India through pop culture at this Diwali celebration for all ages; Learn to Draw Manga/Anime Characters for Teens, Sept. 28 at 7 p.m. Learn how to draw fan favorite manga and anime characters with OneRiver Art School. To register for a program, visit the calendar page at mtpl.org
• The Monmouth County Park System will host Historic Battery Lewis tours on Sept. 24 and 25 from noon to 4 p.m. at Hartshorne Woods Park, Highlands – Rocky Point section. Tour the restored Historic Battery Lewis and learn about the history of this former coastal defense site. Free. Details: 732-842-4000.
• The Monmouth County Park System will host Seabrook-Wilson House tours on Sept. 25 from 1-4 p.m. at Bayshore Waterfront Park, Middletown. Visit the house which dates back to the early 1700s and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and see displays about the ecology of the bay and local history. Free. 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.
• Monmouth County officials have scheduled paper shredding events so residents have the opportunity to dispose of old documents and confidential files safely. All shredding events will be held from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the following locations: Nov. 12, Middletown North High School, 63 Tindall Drive, Middletown. County residents may shred up to 100 pounds of documents. Large binder clips must be removed from documents; staples and paper clips can remain. Information about the paper shredding events and recycling can be found in the recycling section of the county’s website, www.visitmonmouth.com, or call 732-683-8686, ext. 8967.
• 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. 25, St. James Church, 20 Peters Place, Red Bank, 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.; Sept. 26, North Centerville Volunteer Fire Co. No. 1, 372 Middle Road, Hazlet, 1-7 p.m.; Sept. 27, Lincroft Bible Church, 790 Newman Springs Road, Lincroft, 1-7 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
• 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 Oct. 18, Nov. 22 and Dec. 20. Email firstname.lastname@example.org 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 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@example.com.
Items for the Datebook may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please send items at least two weeks prior to a scheduled event.