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Eagle Theatre to renovate mansion and expand services

HAMMONTON - The Eagle Theatre recently acquired a historic, 120-year-old mansion directly adjacent to it. The newly acquired property is currently a multi-unit apartment complex and will be revitalized, expanded and eventually connected to the theater.

The organization plans to use this new location to house out-of-town actors and artists, provide classrooms for outreach and education, a technical workshop and administrative offices. In addition, a portion of this space will ultimately become an extended experiential wine lounge and lobby, offering patrons a unique social opportunity to engage before and after performances.

The initial funding to acquire the property, and begin the renovations, was provided by the state of New Jersey, Downtown Business Improvement Zone Fund, through the Hammonton Revitalization Corporation/MainStreet Hammonton.

“The overall project will cost several hundred thousand dollars,” said Jim Donio, managing director of Eagle Theatre. “More than half of the funds have already been committed and we are seeking donors and funders for the remaining amount, which will allow us to complete this ambitious project within the next several years.”

For theater information, visit www.eagletheatre.org.

The Arc of Atlantic County announces CEO

EGG HARBOR TOWNSHIP - The Board of Directors of The Arc of Atlantic County announced that Scott R. Hennis of Ventnor was named as chief executive officer, effective July 3.

Hennis, originally from Millville, has spent more than 25 years working with individuals who have intellectual and developmental disabilities.

He began his career in 1991, as a direct support professional working in a group home for The Arc of Cape May County. He held several roles as relief manager, assistant manager, program manager and assistant special residential services director during his career with The Arc of Cape May.

Hennis earned his bachelor’s of science in business studies with a concentration in management from Stockton University.

After graduating, Hennis worked in mental health services before coming to The Arc of Atlantic County. In 2008, Hennis accepted a position as the operations director of residential services. In 2012, he was promoted to the role of senior director of operations and was promoted to the position of chief operating officer in 2015.

“Our job in supporting individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities is to provide exemplary service to the people we serve and their families,” said Hennis. “Everyone has their own definition of what great service means, but to me, it’s the service I would want, expect, and demand for a member of my family should they seek or receive support from The Arc.”

Pat Jones, who has served as chief executive officer for the past two years, will take on the role of chief operating officer.

For information, call (609) 485-0800 or visit www.arcatlantic.org.

Stockton Transfer Admissions representative to be at Kramer Hall

HAMMONTON - Students interested in transferring to Stockton University are encouraged to visit Kramer Hall at 30 Front St., for a transfer student instant decision day from noon to 3 p.m. Aug. 9.

Stockton Transfer Admissions representative Steve Phillips will be on site to assist prospective students and provide information on the university.

Students are asked to bring up-to-date official transcripts from all colleges attended and a completed paper application, available at stockton.edu/transfer, which will enable Phillips to give students an instant decision.

Students are able to enroll in undergraduate and graduate level courses taught by distinguished faculty members at Stockton’s Kramer Hall in Hammonton as well as in Galloway and the university’s other sites in Atlantic City, Woodbine and Manahawkin.

Kramer Hall, which includes classrooms, community meeting spaces and cultural partners such as Noyes Museum of Art, Murphy Writing, South Jersey Cultural and History Center, and New Jersey Child Welfare offices, offers a wide range of academic, community-based and cultural programs throughout the year.

For information about classes and events at Stockton University’s Kramer Hall, visit stockton.edu/hammonton.

Atlantic County 4-H Fair will begin Thursday

SOUTH EGG HARBOR - The Atlantic County 4-H Fair will be held Aug. 10 to 12 at the David C. Wood 4-H Fairgrounds on Route 50. Gates open at 9 a.m. Aug. 10 and 11 and 10 a.m. Aug. 12.

The fairgrounds will come alive with kids, livestock, carnival rides and contests. Displays will include homemade clothing projects and preserves, garden produce and fine art, along with woodworking projects, photography, and model railroad displays. 4-H members will still be showing the county’s best horses, hogs, sheep, goats, rabbits and poultry and dogs. There also will be Tae Kwon Do demonstrations, robotics, and STEM activities, as well as nightly baton twirling and other entertainment acts. The Youth Representative Contest will feature outstanding 4-H’ers public speaking and leadership skills and the Talent Show will highlight the most talented individuals in the program. Even pre-schoolers will have fun in the Baby Parade, Teddy Bear Tea, and Crafts for Kids activities.

For information, visit www.facebook.com/AtlanticCounty4H.

Bellview Winery to host annual Seafood Festival

BUENA - Bellview Winery will host its annual Seafood Festival from noon to 5 p.m. Aug. 12 and 13 at 150 Atlantic St., Landisville. The event features craft and seafood vendors, music by To the Maxx Dance Band, wine tasting and more.

Tickets are $15 for adults or $10 for designated drivers; admission is free for ages 20 and younger. Children and leashed pets are welcome. Coolers and outside food are allowed except outside alcohol is prohibited.

For information, call (856) 697-7172 or visit www.bellviewwinery.com.

Facility to celebrate the birthday of Annie Oakley

EGG HARBOR TOWNSHIP - The Atlantic County Firearms Training Facility will celebrate the birthday of Annie Oakley, famous American sharpshooter and Wild West Star, from 2 to 7 p.m. Aug. 13 at 175 Betsey Scull Road. Oakley was born Phoebe Ann Moses on Aug. 13, 1860, in Ohio. At one time she was a resident of New Jersey. Her amazing talent led to a starring role in Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show.

The public is invited to attend and participate in fun shoots for members and introductory shooting instruction for non-members. There will be music, refreshments and prizes.

Admission is free but registration is recommended.

For information, visit www.atlantic-county.org/firearms-training-facility.

Mobile Digital Mammography Van to visit Atlantic County

The AMI Foundation’s Dr. Jan Astin Mobile Digital Mammography Van will be at the following Atlantic County locations this month:

  • AC Rescue Mission BBQ, Pop Lloyd Stadium, Atlantic City, Aug. 18.
  • Southern Jersey Family Medicine Health Fair, Pleasantville, 3:30 p.m. Aug. 18.
  • Refugees of Christ Health Fair, Pleasantville, Aug. 19.
  • Atlantic County Health Services, Northfield, Aug. 23.

The screenings are for women age 40 and older with no current or past breast issues. Screenings are processed through their insurance. Appointments are encouraged, but walk-ins are welcome. A prescription may not be needed.

To schedule an appointment or for information, call (609) 677-9729 or visit www.amifoundation.net.

Vaccines are important for your health

Vaccines are as important to your health as diet and exercise. From birth through adulthood, vaccinations provide protection against many diseases and infections, yet vaccine-preventable infections continue to kill more individuals each year than breast cancer, HIV/AIDS or traffic accidents.

In an effort to help educate the public of the importance of vaccines in protecting individuals and communities, the Atlantic County Division of Public Health will celebrate August as National Immunization Awareness Month by providing several activities throughout the county.

“Vaccines are one of the safest and easiest ways to provide protection for yourself and your family,” noted Atlantic County Public Health Officer Patricia Diamond. “Vaccine-preventable diseases can be deadly if they spread to the very young or very old who are generally at greater risk.”

Information and educational packets will be available at the Atlantic County 4-H Fair from 12:30 to 10 p.m. Aug. 10 to 12 with guidelines and recommendations from the federal Centers for Disease Control.

Adult vaccination clinics will be held Aug. 8, 19 and 29 in Northfield and Aug. 22 in Hammonton for residents without insurance or insurance that does not cover immunizations.

Child vaccinations will be provided Wednesdays in August for children without insurance or those who have NJ Family Care A.

Appointments are necessary for both adult and child vaccinations and may be made by calling (609) 645-7700, ext. 4500.

The Division of Public Health will also hold immunization workshops for day care providers on Aug. 8 and school nurses on Sept. 15.

For vaccination information, visit www.aclink.org/public-health.

Find out why you should ‘Eat Clean and Organic’

EGG HARBOR TOWNSHIP - Gilda’s Club at AtlantiCare will host a presentation, “Why Eat Clean and Organic?,” on Aug. 23 in the Dr. Joseph Stella Conference Room in Building 400 of the AtlantiCare Health Park.

Nicole LaTorre, owner and manager of “Just Eat Clean,” and Jen and Johnny Reedie, who own and operate “Just Organics Box,” will offer reasons to eat clean, healthy and organic food.

The event, which is free and open to the public, includes a lunch at noon followed by the presentation at 12:30 p.m.

Reservations are required.

For reservations or information, call (609) 407-4788 or email jane.abbott@atlanticare.org or visit www.gildasclubsouthjersey.org.

Minotola United Methodist Church plans chicken barbecue

BUENA - Minotola United Methodist Church will hold its annual Chicken Barbecue, takeouts only, from noon to 5 p.m. Aug. 26 at the church at 905 Central Ave.

Tickets, available in advance or at the door, are $10 and include one-half chicken, corn on the cob, tomato, hard boiled egg, pickles, roll and butter. Deliveries may be available for large orders.

For tickets or information, call (856) 697-1967.

Cumberland, Atlantic YMCA to host shore tour

BUENA VISTA - The Cumberland Cape Atlantic YMCA/YMCA of Vineland will host an End of Summer Shore Tour Celebration, for ages 21 and older, from 6:30 to 10:30 p.m. Sept. 22 at Merighi’s Savoy Inn in East Vineland.

The event will feature Jersey shore speciaties including:

  • Atlantic City’s casino games and gambling.
  • Wildwood’s carnival style boardwalk games.
  • Ocean City Boardwalk food such as pizza, fudge and popcorn.
  • Cape May’s seafood specialties, such as scallops.

There will also be a cash bar and activities will be held indoors and outdoors.

Tickets are $75, which includes a $25 voucher for casino and boardwalk games. Advance ticket purchase is required. Proceeds will benefit the YMCA’s Annual Giving Campaign, which helps the Y Cares, Livestrong and diabetes initiatives.

For tickets or information, call (856) 691-0030 or visit www.ccaymca.org.

Mobile van to visit inmates to treat drug addictions

Three in four new heroin users start by abusing prescription drugs, according to the National Institutes of Health. Unfortunately their addiction often leads them to jail.

The Atlantic County Justice Facility is participating in the first program in New Jersey to provide a mobile treatment service to its inmates.

Rather than having to transport inmates to an outside methadone clinic, the clinic comes to them in a van that can provide up to 50 inmates a day with a daily methadone treatment. The treatments help addicts avoid the potentially serious consequences of unassisted withdrawal that can lead to relapse and recidivism. The van is provided by the John Brooks Recovery Center.

“This is one small, but positive step in addressing opioid addiction and its impacts on our communities,” stated County Executive Dennis Levinson. “If we are successful then hopefully it will be implemented throughout New Jersey.”

Opioid addiction has reached epidemic proportions across our country. The Centers for Disease Control reports 91 people die each day from an opioid overdose. And overdose deaths due to prescription painkillers have risen dramatically, by more than 400 percent for women and 265 percent for men.

The use of methadone for opioid addiction helps reduce the cravings and withdrawal symptoms. It blocks the euphoric rush produced by these drugs which can help reduce the chance for relapse, and in the case of jail inmates, may reduce the risk of recidivism.

“Through the jail’s mobile treatment program we are helping addicted inmates to reach a ‘stabilizing dose’ so they can successfully transition to a treatment program upon their release,” added Levinson. “If we can help move them towards treatment then there’s a far greater chance the cycle of addiction can be interrupted, if not broken, so they can lead productive lives outside the criminal justice system.”

Help Stockton University restore oysters to watershed

GALLOWAY - When customers at several Long Beach Island restaurants order clams or oysters this summer they are also helping a Stockton University project to restore oysters to the Southern Barnegat watershed. The used clam and oyster shells are being collected by Long Beach Township employee Joe Mangino three times a week and delivered to Parsons Mariculture, where they will cure and be used to host new oyster larvae.

Last month Stockton’s Marine Field Station worked with the Jetty Rock Foundation, to plant about 150,000 spat, or baby oysters, that had been started by Parsons Mariculture.

That spat used a combination of whelk shells purchased by Dale Parsons, and the first batch of recycled clam and oyster shells from The Old Causeway Steak and Oyster House and Mud City Crab House in Manahawkin, whose owner Melanie Magaziner piloted a shell recycling project in 2015.

Jetty Rock funded this year’s planting and is raising money for future plantings.

Long Beach Township Mayor Joseph Mancini said when he heard about the project he contacted Steve Evert, manager of the Stockton University Marine Field Station, to see how he could help. Township sustainability coordinator Angela Anderson recruited six restauranteurs, and the mayor agreed to provide the manpower and truck to pick up and transport the shells.

“It’s a great cause, and there is less stuff going into the landfill,” Mancini said.

Mangino said Monday is his biggest day, with an average of about 20 bushels, each weighing about 50 pounds. His truck can handle as many as 36 bushels, and Anderson has been recruiting more restaurants.

The restaurants get small metal buckets promoting the recycling project to put on tables so customers can keep the shells separate from other waste.

“I pick through to make sure there is no trash,” Mangino said as he noticed a seafood fork mixed in one bushel.

Participating restaurants include the Blue Water Café, Stefanos, Parker’s Garage and Oyster Saloon, Bistro 14, Howard’s Seafood Restaurant, and Delaware Avenue Oyster House & Bar.

“We try to make it as easy as possible for the restaurants,” said Anderson, who is also a producer of a documentary “The Oyster Farmers” which premiered last month at the Stafford Township Arts Center.

Once plentiful, New Jersey’s oyster population plummeted due to changes in water quality, disease and overharvest.

Evert is pleased with how the spat has adhered to the recycled shells. He said the next few years will be crucial to see how the oysters fare in the Tuckerton Reef site.

“They could get eaten, they could die,” he said, adding that the first batch planted last year are growing and looking good. This year’s new spat is larger after Parson’s installed a new system that fed them more consistently in the tanks.

Both Anderson and Mangino are graduates of Stockton with degrees in environmental studies. They say raising awareness of the oyster industry and its role in the bay is as important as keeping waste out of the landfill.

“These shells should not spend their life in a landfill,” Anderson said. “They have too important a role here.”

The restoration project partnership also includes The American Littoral Society and receives funding from a $52,000 grant from the Barnegat Bay Partnership’s shellfish research program.

For information about Stockton University, visit Stockton.edu.

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