Two local churches that have been offering free, hot meals to those impacted by Sandy or otherwise needy are continuing that tradition for Christmas.
on the corner of Bay Avenue, Point Pleasant Beach, is offering dinner from noon to 2 p.m. on Christmas, as they have been for many years, said Pastor Carl Wilton. Joe Leone's Italian Specialties and Martell's, among other local restaurants, and St Gregory's Pantry, are helping with the effort, Wilton said.
"Come one, come all to the Christmas Dinner, open to anyone looking for a warm and friendly place to enjoy a holiday meal in good company!" Wilton wrote in a Patch event listing.
"Special thanks to Joe Leone's and Martell's for providing food, and to the First Presbyterian Church of Clarks Summit, Pa., for the gift of Christmas cookies," the listing says. "Christmas gifts for all ages, as well as take-home containers of food. Rumor has it, Santa may put in an appearance!"
For more information about the Christmas event, or to volunteer, call the church at (732) 899-0587.
423 West Lake Ave., on the corner of Bridge Avenue, Bay Head, has been serving free, hot meals seven days a week, three times a day, to many residents from Bay Head, Mantoloking,Point Beach, Point Borough and other towns since Sandy struck and has become a local community gathering spot where residents flooded by Sandy can gather, share stories and be supportive of each other.
"We've been blessed to be able to do this," said Pastor Scott H. Bostwick. "It's been cathartic for people, a real community center for the town."
The church is serving breakfast from 7 to 9:30 a.m. on Christmas Eve, followed later by a buffet from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Bostwick said.
The church will have its Christmas Eve service at 7 p.m., followed by its dessert buffet.
Breakfast will be served from 7 to 9:30 a.m. Christmas Day, followed by a buffet from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
St. Paul's need volunteers and donations to make the Christmas meals a success, Bostwick said. To get more information or to volunteer, call the church at (732) 892-5926.
Editor's Note: Reminder: A free, hot dinner will be served today (Sun. Dec. 23) at the Elks on Arnold Ave. For complete story, click here.