Initiative will help to support

the monarch butterfly

As part of its ongoing environmental initiatives, South Jersey Transportation Authority is erecting butterfly houses and planting trees that naturally support the monarch butterfly, which is threatened by a loss of habitat in the Western Hemisphere.

Naturalists are alarmed by reports of reduced numbers of monarchs at their wintering grounds in Northern Mexico, where counts of the butterflies are conducted each year and reveal a disconcerting decline in numbers.

Renowned for the brilliant colors and design on its wings, the monarch migrates each spring from Mexico to the U.S., with many stopping at Cape May, attracted by the prevalence of milkweed and other native plants there that are favored by the butterflies.

Through this initiative the SJTA will work with local schools to install specially designed wooden butterfly houses and plant trees native to the area that help attract and feed the butterflies on their migration. Students at the various schools will be invited to paint the butterfly houses and learn more about the life cycle of the monarch butterfly.

“The Atlantic City Expressway occupies a significant footprint in South Jersey and as such we implement a number of programs like the butterfly houses and planting native trees to exert a positive impact on the environment in South Jersey and beyond,” explained Stephen F. Dougherty, executive director, South Jersey Transportation Authority.

The houses were built by students from the Camden County Technical Schools Sicklerville Campus with materials provided by the SJTA.

Crews from the Atlantic City Expressway’s Operations Department will visit schools to install the butterfly houses and plant trees in the coming month.

You can purchase tickets

to college restaurant gala

ATLANTIC CITY - Time is running out to purchase tickets to the 35th annual Atlantic Cape Community College Restaurant Gala, which will be held on March 28 in the Avalon Ballroom of Harrah’s Waterfront Conference Center. This annual event celebrates food by highlighting hors d’oeuvres prepared by students in the Academy of Culinary Arts at Atlantic Cape and showcasing the specialties of 40 of the region’s best restaurants during a progressive dining experience.

Kevin Ortzman, regional president for Caesars Entertainment will be honored at the gala as the Community Honoree. The 2018 Culinary Honoree is Georgeann Leaming of Brigantine, executive chef of Gordon Ramsay Pub & Kitchen in Caesars Atlantic City Hotel and Casino and 1999 Academy of Culinary Arts graduate.

This year’s theme is “Culinary Magic,” showcasing the talent and cooking expertise of the students and alumni of the Academy of Culinary Arts.

The Ocean City Pops will provide entertainment during the cocktail reception, which will also include a few “magical surprises.”

Attendees will have the opportunity to dance to music by Central Park The Band and enjoy photo opportunities in a photo booth. Desserts, cordials and special offerings from an espresso bar will complete the evening.

This year, the Atlantic Cape Community College Restaurant Gala will recognize the 2017 passing of James L. Cooper, a visionary and driving force behind the Atlantic Cape Community College Foundation. Cooper was a long-standing champion of the college’s mission and a strong supporter of the gala.

Tickets are $225. Proceeds will benefit student scholarships at the Academy of Culinary Arts at Atlantic Cape Community College and Atlantic Cape Foundation operations

For tickets, call Kristin Jackson at (609) 463-3621 or email or visit Advertising opportunities are also still available.

Learn all about the new

hunt plan for refuge

Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge will hold a presentation of the new hunt plan at 6:30 p.m. March 21 at refuge headquarters at 800 Great Creek Road in Oceanville. The refuge proposes opening new areas for hunting and adding squirrel and turkey seasons. Refuge Manager Virginia Rettig enthuses, “This is the first time the hunt plan has been updated since 2004. We’re excited about everyone reading the entire plan and attending the public meetings.” Before a refuge can finalize new plans, it must allow for public comment. Comments on the final draft of the hunt plan may be submitted until April 11.

To review the document, visit Copies of the document may also be requested via email at or by calling (609) 652-1665. Comments may be sent to the refuge via email at or mailed to: Edwin B. Forsythe NWR, P.O. Box 72, Oceanville, NJ 08231, ATTN: Hunt Plan.

Atlantic Audubon Society

to meet at county library

GALLOWAY - Atlantic Audubon Society will meet at 6:30 p.m. March 28 in the Atlantic County Library at 306 E. Jimmie Leeds Road. The social hour will be followed by a Pete Bacinski’s presentation “Owls, Nightjars and Rails: Birds we love but seldom see.”

The public is welcome.

Downtown Hammonton to

hold Easter Eggstravaganza

HAMMONTON - The Easter Eggstravaganza will be held from 1 to 3 p.m. March 30 in Downtown Hammonton. Each year downtown businesses celebrate the Easter season and plan an afternoon filled with treats, games and activities for children of all ages.

The Easter Bunny will drop by South Second Street to dance the bunny hop and visit with the kids. Second Street will feature a “kid-friendly zone” with Bunny Bean Bag Toss, Pin the Tail on the Bunny, Easter crafts, DJ Cruz and more. Also, Charlie’s Chicken Farm will be selling free range, all natural Easter colored eggs. Stop by their table for a chance to dance the “Chicken Dance” and maybe see cute little chicks.

The annual Great Egg Drop will be held at the Toy Market beginning at 1 p.m. The winner will be announced at 3 p.m. For this event, children use their creative skills to attempt to prevent their raw egg from smashing and breaking on the ground.

For information, call (609) 567-9014 or email

Shore to launch fundraising campaign for ‘Exceptional Births’

SOMERS POINT - Each year Shore Medical Center’s Maternity Department helps an estimated 1,200 babies enter the world. For each of those deliveries, baby and mother are monitored closely with the help of a fetal monitor from the time they enter the hospital to the moment the baby is delivered.

Recent advances in fetal monitoring technology have proven to provide women and their babies with an even better labor and birth experience and outcome. While Shore’s current fetal monitors are effective, the maternity team is eager to take advantage of new technologies in fetal monitoring. Shore is launching a $100,000 fundraising campaign, “Campaign for Exceptional Births,” to purchase 10 new fetal monitors, and seeks the support of the community in reaching its goal.

One way Shore is engaging with the community to raise funds for this campaign is through “Dinner and a Dream,” which will be held from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. May 10 an event being held on May 10 Greate Bay Country Club in partnership with the Atlantic City Ballet. The event features dinner and a live condensed performance of Shakespeare’s comedy “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” by the Atlantic City Ballet. Tickets are $30 for Shore’s Stainton Society members and children age 8 and older and $50 for non-members. For tickets, call Doreen Gordon at (609) 653-3800 or visit

Fetal monitors consist of two straps and sensors attached to a machine, which measures a baby’s heart rate as well as the mother’s uterine contractions. These measurements provide the labor and delivery team with important information about the well-being of the baby, including whether or not there are signs of possible distress. From these readings the labor and delivery team determines if any intervention is needed.

While Shore’s current monitors are still effective, newer monitors have flatter, more sensitive sensors and are more accurate with movement. They may allow a mother to use a bathtub or shower, bounce on a birthing ball, and move her body in ways that reduce pain. At the same time, the labor and delivery team can be assured that the monitors are still capturing the most accurate information.

Studies show that movement during labor can also help shorten the duration of labor, decrease the chances the mother will need an epidural or a C-section, and ultimately lead to a more satisfying birth experience for the mother, and a healthy baby. Not only do these new fetal monitors improve the mother’s mobility and decrease risk of C-sections, they also improve the efficacy of monitoring for mothers whose body type makes monitoring more difficult.

Christl Dooley, nurse manager of the maternity department, says that while fetal monitors are used in all births, they are especially critical in high risk pregnancies.

“We’re seeing more and more high risk pregnancies today, as women are choosing to have babies later in life or presenting with complications like obesity, hypertension or gestational diabetes. This brings an increased need for interventionalized care, but with these new monitors we can know more about what’s going on with mom and baby and support moms in having a healthy baby and the kind of delivery they want, despite being high risk,” Dooley says.

To make a donation or for information, call (609) 653-3800 or visit

South Jersey Federal Credit Union donates more than 750 books

South Jersey Federal Credit Union donated more than 750 books from the Little Rhino book series, authored by Ryan Howard, former Philadelphia Phillies first baseman and World Series Champion.

The donations were made to nonprofit organizations, including AtlantiCare, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Robins’ Nest and The Ronald McDonald House of Southern New Jersey, and will be distributed to children throughout the facilities.

Also, a book signing was held in February at SJFCU’s Corporate Center in Deptford. For each book purchased at the signing, SJFCU donated a book to one of the four nonprofit organizations. This resulted in an additional donation of 452 books.

Register now for fall classes at

the Academy of Culinary Arts

MAYS LANDING - Registration is in progress for fall classes at the Academy of Culinary Arts at Atlantic Cape Community College. Fall classes begin Aug. 27.

New culinary students should contact Judy DeSalvo at (609) 343-5624 or email to schedule a registration appointment. Registration hours are from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays.

The academy offers two-year degree programs in culinary arts, baking and pastry, and food service management, and specialization programs in hot foods, baking and pastry, food service management and catering.

The academy also offers two one-year certificate programs, Baking and Pastry Certificate I and Culinary Arts Certificate I. These two-semester certificates are designed to provide students with career training for entry-level positions in the baking and pastry or culinary fields. The certificates can also be used as a foundation for completing an associate degree at the Academy of Culinary Arts.

ACA students have many opportunities to gain hands-on experience throughout the year.

Full-time classes meet five hours a day, Monday through Friday, in morning or afternoon sessions.

For information, call (800) 645-CHEF, email or visit

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