By Monmouth County Freeholder Director Tom Arnone
It has been a busy couple of weeks full of exciting initiatives and events here in Monmouth County! As such, I’d like to share just a few updates with everyone.
First of all, I’m pleased to announce the end of another successful year of my Healthy Eating Initiative SUSHI, which aims to promote healthy eating and living among our youth. My goal in creating this program was to show students the importance of eating local and eating healthy through educational programs. We have well exceeded our expectations!
This year we expanded the initiative by adding a third school to the program. Students from Colts Neck, Asbury Park and Neptune City participated in weekly after-school field trips to the Allaire Community Farm in Wall Township. During these trips, the students learned the process behind growing different types of fruits and vegetables and why it is important to incorporate them into our daily diets. The students also worked on creating their own gardens at their respective schools.
Speaking of their own gardens, last week I joined the students from all three schools and the farm owner at Neptune City’s Woodrow Wilson School for their Garden’s Groundbreaking Ceremony. The students from Colts Neck and Asbury Park came to Neptune City to help them transplant their plants into their garden and to celebrate Woodrow Wilson School’s first garden. I am very proud of these students for all that they have accomplished and learned this year!
I look forward to helping this program grow and incorporate more school districts in the future. Stay tuned!
On a separate note, I continued my Coloring Book Tour of Monmouth County. Last week I visited with the students at Spring Lake Heights Elementary School to give students copies of the Coloring Book and to talk to them about local government and my role as the Freeholder Director, the County’s different departments and about the wonderful thing the County has to offer.
Additionally, I continued traveling to different municipalities in the County on a Shared Services tour. Last week I attended the Middletown Town Council Meeting. My goal is to educate these towns on the shared services programs that the County provides. As liaison to the County’s Shared Services Department, I want to ensure that Monmouth County is and will remain the leading Shared Services County in the State. I look forward to continuing to work together with our partners.
There were a number of events I attended the last few which that I would like to highlight.
In honor of National Military Appreciation Month in May, I joined my fellow Freeholders and Sheriff Shaun Golden at a dedication ceremony hosted by Clerk Christine Hanlon for a newly designated veteran’s parking space at the Monmouth County Clerk’s Office in Freehold Borough. Monmouth County is dedicated to honoring our veterans and to providing them with great services to help those in need.
This past Friday I attended the 200 Club’s Annual Awards Luncheon. For those who do not know about the 200 Club, it is an organization that provides financial assistance to the families of public safety and rescue personnel who have been killed in the line of duty. Additionally, the 200 Club also presents scholarships annually to graduating high school students. I would like to congratulate all the law enforcement officers who were recognized for their efforts during the recent 200 Club luncheon. I am proud to be a trustee of this organization.
Another event I had the honor of attending last week with Sheriff Shaun Golden was the Brielle Centennial Celebration to honor and celebrate the Borough of Brielle’s wonderful community, businesses and all of their residents. Thank you to Mayor Thomas Nicol and Councilman Frank Garruzzo for hosting this event and congratulation on your 100th Birthday!
Lastly, I want to invite all restaurants throughout Monmouth County to participate in the first-ever Grown in Monmouth Restaurant Week, which will run from Sunday, July 28 through Sunday, August 4. As liaison to the County’s Division of Economic Development I am proud that we have created an event that will promote both our local businesses and our local farmers at no cost to them.
Restaurants participating in the Grown in Monmouth Restaurant Week must feature at least one dish that is made with ingredients that have been grown in Monmouth County. There are no requirements for pricing or menu selection. Those interested in participating in the first-ever Grown in Monmouth Restaurant Week can sign-up by contacting the Monmouth County Division of Economic Development by phone at 732-431-7470 or by email at [email protected]
As always, it’s a privilege to serve as your Freeholder Director.