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The Journals are the premier publications for high-quality, hyperlocal news and advertising in Monmouth County, New Jersey

Sep 08, 2017

Holiday Express Prepares for Giving Season

By Joanne Colella

It may not be the winter holiday season yet, but the tireless elf volunteers at Holiday Express are hard at work, preparing for their amazing 25th anniversary of delivering music, food, gifts, financial support, and friendship to those with the greatest need for the gift of human kindness. During the 2017 season, from November 6 through Christmas Eve, hundreds of Holiday Express volunteers will be crisscrossing New Jersey, New York, and Philadelphia to provide an astounding 100 events – sometimes two or three each day – for often-forgotten individuals at homeless shelters, soup kitchens, children’s hospitals, centers for the physically or developmentally challenged, veterans’ homes, rehabilitation facilities, mental health organizations, special needs schools, women and children shelters, substance abuse programs, and more.

On July 17, 142 golfers hit the links at the Manasquan River Golf Club in Brielle for the 15th Annual Holiday Express Golf Classic to raise a record-setting $84,000 for the non-profit organization, which was founded by Tim McLoone in 1993. Generous golfers and supporters came out to the world-class course on a beautiful and unusually cool, dry, summer day to help make the annual outing its greatest success to date.

This month, on Sunday, September 17 from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m., the organization will host their 10th Annual Holiday Express Sunset Benefit Clambake. Held under an enormous and fabulously designed tent on the beach at McLoone’s Pier House in Long Branch, this incomparable event welcomes hundreds of guests who enjoy a premium open bar, a lavishly sumptuous buffet with lobster, filet mignon, and a raw bar, with musical entertainment by the talented professional musicians of Holiday Express, who volunteer their time and talent for the visits made to very special audiences during the holiday season. Dress is beach casual – best suitable for dancing in the sand! – for this gala celebration, which also features a tremendous silent auction with a vast array of prize items, a live auction by Big Joe Henry, a 50/50 raffle, and more delights.

Most exciting of all is the very special honoree for this year’s Sunset Benefit Clambake: Darlene Love, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Vocal Artist behind the song that is the heartfelt anthem for Holiday Express, “All Alone on Christmas.” Don’t miss this outstanding event; tickets are going fast and it’s sure to sell out.

Proceeds from the Holiday Express Golf Classic and the Sunset Benefit Clambake will improve the quality of life for the 27,000 adults and children being served by Holiday Express this year. More information about Holiday Express, and reservations for the September 17 gala, are available at www.holidayexpress.org or (732) 544-8010.