January 17: Head over to Pompton Lakes to support the Music Parents Association’s 2nd Annual Tri-County Pizza Showdown. Admission is $5 per person for all-you-can-eat pizza and soda. For an additional $5, guests can participate in a pizza-eating contest. Event is from noon to 2 p.m. Participants include Tony’s of Pompton Lakes, Brother Bruno of Wayne, V and J Pizza & Carnival Spot Pizza (both in Pompton Plains), Oakland Pizza & Juniors Pizza in Oakland, Boniello’s Pizza and Santina’s Pizza (both of Riverdale), Danny’s Pizza in Bloomingdale, and AJ’s Pizza of Butler. Admission proceeds go toward the Pompton Lakes High School Music Department and its scholarship fund. Lincoln School, 40 Mill Street, Pompton Lakes.
January 18: Classic Cake hosts a book signing with local children’s book author Traci Dunham. Dunham will read from her new book, The Oyster’s Secret. Themed treats and giveaways round out the afternoon. Admission is free. To RSVP, call 856-751-5448 or email [email protected]. Classic Cake, Short Hills Towne Center, 480 Evesham Road, Cherry Hill.
January 23: Help foster therapeutic programs while munching on cheese. The Salt Creek Grille hosts a Wine and Cheese Tasting Event from 7 to 10:30 p.m. There will also be live music and a raffle. Tickets are $125 and benefit Special People United to Ride (SPUR), a therapeutic horse riding program for people with disabilities. Salt Creek Grille, 4 Bingham Avenue, Rumson, 732-933-9272.
January 26 to February 2: Bring together the excitement of the Superbowl and the entertainment of great food deals at Montclair’s Restaurant Week. Already 14 different restaurants have signed up to offer specials throughout the week and have donated to the local Rotary Club.
January 28: Escape’s Chef Bryan Gregg holds a charity dining experience with acclaimed Chef David Viana of The Kitchen at Grove Station. The five-course dinner will allow diners to bring their own wines to pair up with the courses. The cost of the dinner is $68 per person, with 50% of the proceeds being donated to the Carol G. Simon Cancer Center of NJ. Seating for this event is very limited. Call 973-744-0712 to reserve. Complete details here. Escape Montclair, 345 Bloomfield Ave., Montclair.
February 1: Slow Food Northern NJ‘s 7th Annual Winter Market offers northern NJ residents an opportunity to stock up on sustainable local food from the best famers and food artisans in the area, from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. Proceeds from the event will help advance Slow Food Northern NJ’s mission of helping schools start vegetable gardens. The organization will be signing up teachers, parents, and school administrators for materials and fundraising support to help start school vegetable gardens. Snow date: February 8. The Woodland, 60 Woodland Rd., Maplewood.
February 6: Support the Summit Animal Rescue Association (SARA) by coming to the Spaghetti Dinner Fundraiser, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Tickets are $10 per person, and there will be a cash bar.Tickets can be purchased at the Columbian Club or with Eileen of SARA at 908-230-9299 or [email protected] Columbian Club, 37 South Avenue, Garwood.
February 8: It’s time for A Meal for Amiel at Perona Farms. Chef Florian Wehrli, several other top chefs, will hold a benefit dinner to raise money to build a greenhouse/interactive classroom for Frankford Township School. The five-course tasting meal will feature regionally grown meats, cheeses, and produce and will be held at beautiful Perona Farms in Andover. Cocktails start at 5:00 p.m., seating is at 6:00 p.m. Tickets can be purchased here. Perona Farms, 350 Andover Sparta Road, Andover.
February 21: The Big Brew Beer Festival returns! Held at the Morristown Armory, the event is the perfect opportunity to meet other beer aficionados with a slew of tastings to warm the socializing. Early bird prices are currently in effect: general admission is $60, while VIP admission is $85 VIP admission includes an additional hour of tasting and 20+ more brews. Designated drivers come in for just $10. Read more about the event here. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to Morris Rugby, which raises funds and awareness for youth rugby throughout the region. Morristown Armory, 430 Western Avenue, Morristown, 973-927-2794.
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