Guests Celebrate Lunch Break’s “Taste Of Summer” Extravaganza


Lunch Break’s Taste of Summer Culinary Extravaganza was the official kickoff of the party season as more than 275 attendees enjoyed the iconic views of the Shrewsbury River and dined on delicious fare at the organization’s third annual food-and-fun festival. The event took place May 14th at The Channel Club, Monmouth Beach.

It may have been a drizzly and cool spring evening outside, but it was hot! hot! hot! inside as guests mingled amid the beachy warm weather backdrop of sand pails and seashells. No rain delay here!

Lunch Break Board Member David Hinton; Board President John Klein; and Board Member Michael Blechman and wife Judi


More than 30 area restaurants and eateries offered sumptuous samplings for every palate, along with craft beer, wine and liquor distributors. Party-goers feasted on everything from pork sliders, ceviches, gourmet summer soups, Greek fare, sushi, seafood delights, including gourmet mac and cheese to Thai cuisine, decadent desserts, ice cream treats, and cocktails, beer and wine. Guests mingled and enjoyed the riverside view while Lunch Break volunteer Mike Welty of Rummy Joe provided the music.

From the Community YMCA: Pam Hearn, Chief Development Officer; Laurie Goganzer, President and CEO; and Andrea Plaza, Senior Vice President, Marketing and Development


“Once again, the Taste of Summer Culinary Extravaganza was a night to remember. We were excited to be part of the third annual summer party, which raised awareness and funds to help Lunch Break in its efforts to provide food, clothing, fellowship and life skills,” said George Chrysanthopoulos, a member of the Lunch Break Board of Trustees and owner of the Beach Tavern and Channel Club Marina in Monmouth Beach.

Lunch Break Executive Director Gwendolyn Love, Development Manager Jill Govel-Gwydir, Director of Administration/ Special Events Millie Jeter and Board President John Klein


Executive Director Gwendolyn Love also got into the spirit of the festivities: “This has been an incredible night. The turnout was an awesome testament to the community’s support for what we do,” she said. “‘Lunch Break always tries to offer an experience for those who support our events, and with the gourmet samplings provided by our restaurants, the beautiful magical Channel Club setting, and friends who love our mission, it was an amazing time. Thanks to all the restaurants, The Channel Club, volunteers and attendees for making Taste of Summer a success.”

Denise Friedman, Lunch Break Life Skills Program Director Mary Ann LaSardo, Lunch Break Life Skills Volunteer Millie Diaz and Special Events Coordinator Ellen Fitzpatrick


Participating restaurants and eateries featured were Jake’s Downtown; Beach Tavern; Channel Club Catering; Butler’s Market; Asbury Festhalle & Biergarten; Charlie’s of Bay Head; Nothing Bundt Cakes; Et al Fine Food; Culinary Education Center of Monmouth County; Proving Ground; Suzi’s Sweet Shoppe; Teak; Duck Donuts; Fresh; Frutta Bowls; Gourmet Barbara; Danny’s Steakhouse & Sushi; Sickles Market; Igloo Pops; Rumson House; 26 West on the Navesink; Triumph Brewery; Greek Eats; Chef Dan; Food Circus Catering; The Cheese Cave; Hoffman’s Ice Cream; Nana’s Kitchen; Eat Clean Bro; The French Market; Shore Point Distributors; My Kitchen Witch; and Lunch Break.

Lunch Break Volunteer Jan Ketner with Jack Ketner and Dana Delfino


Lively guitar music was provided by Lunch Break volunteer Mike Welty of Rummy Joe. A 50/50 cash prize was awarded to a lucky recipient; others won assorted dining and gift certificates from many of our wonderful sponsors including Boondocks Fishery. Carton Brewing Company donated a growler for future fill-up at their Atlantic Highlands location. Local artist Kevin Leahy provided a gorgeous original oil painting, Beach Escapes, for a special art raffle.

A group of friends enjoying the Taste of Summer Culinary Extravaganza


The Channel Club, as well as the restaurants, eateries and vendors generously donated food, desserts and staff so that 100 percent of ticket sales benefited Lunch Break, which freely provides life’s basic necessities of food, clothing and shelter for the greater Monmouth County community.

Mark your calendar for our Fall Gala: October 11, 2019 at the The Sheraton in Eatontown. For inquiries about sponsorships and/or underwriting opportunities please contact Development Manager Jill Govel-Gwydir (732) 747-8577, Ext. 3107.

Lunch Break  freely provides life’s basic necessities of food, clothing, fellowship and life skills for the greater Monmouth County community. As a reminder: Donations are always accepted at Follow Lunch Break on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Give local, stays local, helps locals.  #whywebreak

Suzanne Vreeland Photography – Cover photo: Beach Tavern Executive Chef Ken Mansfield

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