• New Jersey Blood Services, a division of New York Blood Center, is conducting blood drives which are open to the public. The following blood drives are scheduled: Jan. 31, Lincroft Bible Church, 790 Newman Springs Road, Middletown, 1-7 p.m.; Feb. 28, 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 or visit www.nybloodcenter.org
• The Monmouth County Park System will present National Seed Swap Day on Jan. 28 from 10-11 a.m. at Freneau Woods Park Visitor Center, Aberdeen Township. Bring seeds (at least five) in an envelope labeled with the plant name, year collected and where it was purchased or collected. No invasive species. Seeds can be dropped off in advance at the Huber Woods Environmental Center, Middletown. Free. Details: 732-842-4000.
• The Monmouth County Park System will host Wondrous Winter Walks on Feb. 1 at 10 a.m. at Thompson Park, Lincroft (meet in the Old Orchard parking lot) and on Feb. 15 at 10 a.m. at Freneau Woods Park, Aberdeen Township (meet in the Visitor Center parking lot). Join a park system naturalist to explore a park in the winter. Open to all ages; under 18 with adult. Sturdy footwear is recommended, trails may have inclines or tree roots to step over. Free. Details: 732-842-4000.
• The Monmouth County Park System will present Cutting, Splitting and Hewing on Feb. 5 from noon to 2:30 p.m. at Historic Longstreet Farm, Longstreet Road, Holmdel.
Join the farm staff as they use a two-man saw and splitting wedge. Free. Details: 732-842-4000.
• The Monmouth County Park System will present the Casual Birder on Feb. 21 at 9 a.m. at Bayshore Waterfront Park, Middletown. Join a park system naturalist for a morning bird walk. Free. Details: 732-842-4000.
• The Monmouth County Park System will present a Nature Lecture Series: The Real Story of Captain Kidd and His Treasure on Feb. 16 from 7-8 p.m. at the Bayshore Waterfront Park Activity Center, Middletown. Explore the legends and lore of Captain Kidd, his crew and his famous buried treasure during this talk by a park system naturalist. Free. Details: 732-842-4000.
• The Monmouth County Park System will host the Monmouth County Parks Backyard Bird Count on Feb. 17 from 9-10 a.m. at the Manasquan Reservoir Environmental Center, Howell; on Feb. 18 from 9-10 a.m. at the Freneau Woods Park Visitor Center, Aberdeen Township; and on Feb. 19 from 9-10 a.m. at the Huber Woods Park Environmental Center, Middletown. Join a park system naturalist in celebration of the Great American Backyard Bird Count and look to see what winter birds are at local feeders. The event will include a short walk to see what birds can be identified. Free. Details: 732-842-4000.
• The Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey is inviting New Jersey high school students to create original music with substance use prevention messages as part of the 2023 Your Song! Your Voice! Shout Down Drugs New Jersey music competition. The competition is open to any type of music genre or any musical style. Entries accepted through March 5. Students interested in sharing their musical talent can submit original music with lyrics about substance use prevention. The finalists’ songs will be showcased in a virtual Prevention Concert on April 26. For competition rules, contact Diane Higgins at 973-275-7985 or email@example.com.
• 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.
Items for the Datebook may be sent to MiddletownSun@newspapermediagroup.com. Please send items at least two weeks prior to a scheduled event.