Food & Drink

Mardi Gras Celebration Breaks Out on Main Street Somerville


SOMERVILLE, NJ – Just a bit more subdued and a little less rowdy, Bourbon Street meets Main Street this weekend through Tuesday, as Verve Restaurant, Bar & Bistro hosts its annual Mardi Gras celebration, culminating on Fat Tuesday, Feb. 25.

But owner Rick St. Pierre encourages bead and trinket throwing – and don’t forget to wear your masks.

A Creole-inspired menu created just for the celebration features Creole-style cooking a la  New Orleans - spicy fish and gumbos, as well as dishes from Brazil and Venice, where revelers know how to celebrate the final day before the Lenten season begins.

Sign Up for E-News

Verve will also host its 4th annual Gumbo Cook-Off on Sunday, Feb. 26.

“We’ll show what it means to have a little bit of fun, a little bit of spice and some art, all for a good cause,” St. Pierre said.

Beginning on Thursday, and extending through Fat Tuesday, visitors to Verve are encouraged to bid on the Mardi-Gras style masks that decorate the walls.

The masks are made by residents of the Matheny School, which treats young adults with severe challenges. The masks will be sold to the highest bidders. Bids are accepted through Tuesday.

Proceeds from the auction will be donated to the Matheny School, as well as a portion of food receipts.

Same for the $10 it will cost to sample the homemade gumbos brought in by contestants.

Trophies will be awarded to the winners in different categories. Those wanting to compete must arrive at Verve no later than 1 p.m. Sunday with two gallons of their best Gumbo recipe. Chafing dishes will be supplied.

There is a $10 cover for the Gumbo feast. Verve will provide the sides. Gaudy beads and other bling will also be supplied by Verve.  Specialty drinks will be available. The Gumbo Buffet will be open from 1-5 p.m.

Music will be performed by Bob Lanza Blues.

Fat Tuesday winds up the five-day Mardi Gras celebration, with food, libations, prizes, gaudy decorations and cheap plastic trinkets, according to St. Pierre.

Further information is available by calling Verve at (908) 707-8655 or online at

TAP Into Another Town's News:

Sign Up for E-News

North Plainfield/Green Brook/Watchung

Local Travel Ideas for St. Patrick’s Day - Calm Family Events to Drinking Shots from...Nevermind

March 17, 2018

St. Patrick’s Day is coming upon us even faster than St. Patrick chased the snakes out of Ireland.  Here are some of the areas great events to celebrate Irish pride.

March 17 Events

Hoboken - The Nerds at Willie McBride’s (see poster up in the slide show)

Newton - Sober St. Patrick’s Day Gathering

Newton (parade) - Sussex County St. Patrick's Day ...

After a Couple Painful Travel Days the New York City Area Airports Are Returning to Normal

After a couple of difficult travel days, the local airports are returning to normal.  The FAA is reportin only 10 to 15 minute delays.  Allow extra times for the commute to the airport and you should be fine.

Just keep these ideas and links fresh in mind for future travels.  You may even want to bookmark the page for future reference.

Most Airlines now offer ...

Air Travel Disruptions - Newark and Laguardia Airports Are Reporting Delays of 1 to 2 Hours.

The weather continues to play havoc on local air travel.  Newark is reporting average delays of 1 hour 41 minutes and LaGuardia is experiencing 59 minute delays.

Most Airlines now offer APP, text, or email updates to flight delays.  Make sure to sign up for them.  That will be your fastest way to get notifications. Also, make sure to ...

Third Nor’easter to Brush The Region, Wind Gusts a Concern

NEW YORK, NY - The third in a series of nor’easters impacting the Mid-Atlantic and New England will affect the area Monday evening through Tuesday.

The track of the storm has been particularly troublesome to forecast, but the midday model runs today, March 11, have begun to converge on a solution that curves the center of the nor’easter far offshore of New Jersey before ...

Travels Spotlight - 25th Annual Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival Continues Through May 28

LAKE BUENA VISTA, FL - The 25th Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival at the Walt Disney World Resort continues through May 28, 2018. The first festival in was a 38-day celebration, for 2018 it is 90 days of gardens and topiaries. 2018 is also the 35th anniversary of Epcot.

The Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival is showcasing millions of ...

Travel Alert - GWB and Holland Tunnel Lane Closures Scheduled For the Week

Lane closings are planned for the George Washington Bridge and the Holland Tunnel this weekend and/or next week for ongoing construction and repair projects.

Holland Tunnel:

One westbound lane in the tunnel will be closed during overnight hours from Sunday, March 11, through Thursday, March 15, from 11:59 p.m. each night through 5:30 a.m. the following ...

St. Patrick’s Day Sobriety Check in Belmar/Neptune Area on Tap by State Police

March 17, 2018

BELMAR, NJ — Giving no details on location and time, New Jersey State Police plans to conduct a sobriety checkpoint on Saturday, March 17 in the area of Belmar and Neptune Township,

The state police made the announcement on its Facebook page, alerting motorists that state troopers will be pulling over vehicles at this undisclosed location and time  “looking for signs of ...


South Plainfield - Joseph G. Zekas, 90, passed away on Thursday, March 15, 2018 at The Willows at ...
Read more

Upcoming Events


Fri, March 23, 12:00 PM

Resolve, Scotch Plains

Free Teen Anxiety Group (Ages 14-17) at Resolve


Fri, March 30, 12:00 PM

Resolve, Scotch Plains

Free Teen Anxiety Group (Ages 14-17) at Resolve


Fri, April 6, 12:00 PM

Resolve, Scotch Plains

Free Teen Anxiety Group (Ages 14-17) at Resolve


Sat, April 14, 7:00 PM


Support Watchung Hills Project Graduation: SIP ...

Sat, June 2, 9:00 AM

South Plainfield

Holy Savior Academy 5K and Family Fun Walk

Health & Wellness

Tue, June 12, 7:00 PM

FairBridge Hotel and Conference Center, Somerset

SPHS Class of 1968 50the Reunion


AAA Cautions: Daylight Saving Could Affect Daily Commute

March 10, 2018

WARREN, NJ - AAA is reminding drivers that the change to Daylight Saving Time may create distractions on the roadway and challenges for drivers who lost an hour of sleep. Daylight Saving Time begins on Sunday at 2 a.m.

“As we spring forward, drivers should be aware that the time change will also mean changes to driving habits,” said Robert Sinclair, Manager of Media ...

It's Official: Snow Day in North Plainfield, Raritan Valley

WARREN, NJ - North Plainfield Schools and Raritan Valley Community College have all made the call to cancel school and all after school activities on Wednesday, Mar. 7.

Forecasters anticipate hazardous travel conditions statewide.

In the event you lose power, contact your local power provider and not Police Communications unless an emergency ...

Fairytale Marriage Proposal Takes Center Stage at St. Patrick’s Day Parade

March 17, 2018

SOMERVILLE, NJ – A surprise engagement took center stage at last weekend’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Somerville. In the midst of the March 11 festivities, Piscataway resident Steven Verardi boarded a float and popped the question to his girlfriend Elise Latona, marking the first known engagement to take place at the parade in 27 years.

Since opening The Beauty Bar ...

Somerset County Student Escorted from School; Loaded Gun Found in Backpack

FRANKLIN TOWNSHIP, NJ - A 17-year-old high school student was escorted from school yesterday by police who found a loaded 9mm semi-automatic pistol in his back pack along with narcotics, according to Somerset County Prosecutor Michael H. Robertson.

Robertson said the initial investigation by law enforcement revealed that there were no known threats to the students or faculty; he commended the ...