For the third year, a pub crawl will help fundraise for People’s Pantry, in a fun day out on the Seaside boardwalk.
Called the “Seaside Gives Back Pub Tour,” this year’s event is June 16, beginning at 2 p.m. The cost to participate and means to sign up are not yet posted, but in previous years the event began at the Sawmill and worked its way north to several bars, where participants received a t-shirt, wristband drink specials and the chance for prizes.
As in previous years, the fundraiser will benefit the People’s Pantry, a Toms River-based charity that offers a grocery store-like experience to its food pantry service. Founded after Superstorm Sandy out of efforts with Toms River Regional Schools, the pantry had several homes around Toms River before landing as part of the BEAT Center on Hooper Avenue in Silverton, where the JBJ Soul Kitchen and Fulfill food pantry also opened.
Though it began as a way to address the need for food services immediately after Superstorm Sandy, People’s Pantry continues to see high demand in this area to address food insecurity.
In 2017, for example, People’s Pantry distributed 1,357,688 lbs of food to 43,251 clients, of which 10,660 were children.
That food comes from a variety of sources: 583,464 lbs.were donated by People’s Pantry local retail partners, 463,198 lbs were provided by Fulfill (formally the FoodBank of Monmouth and Ocean Counties) and 311,025 lbs were donated by the local community, this includes 81,000 lbs directly from Goya Foods.
Last year also logged 12,203 volunteer hours to accomplish tasks such as client intake, food processing and display. A unique feature to the People’s Pantry is that volunteers take clients down the food bank’s aisles, which are set up like a grocery store, providing a sense of normalcy for them.
This year’s pub crawl focuses on the Inspire NJ charity, which in addition to the People’s Pantry food bank also helps special needs students of Toms River Regional find job training skills, often through the food bank or BEAT Center tasks.
For information and how to sign up as details are released, visit the pub crawl’s event page.