Arts & Entertainment

Cranbury: Strawberry Festival Sweetened By Human Kindness

38e53bc2b822839fc8e4_WP_20160604_018.jpg
Credits: Nicole M. Wells photos
ac76568481f40b0c8c54_WP_20160604_005.jpg
1b1bc1bd883d6c611935_WP_20160604_012.jpg
f0f1d76ffeeafb7318cd_WP_20160604_014.jpg
44c9de9418aa86b7b728_WP_20160604_020.jpg
8a6f8a68ea1e06312f8f_WP_20160604_023.jpg
fef5ef24b0e9dfdfdc97_WP_20160604_033.jpg
38e53bc2b822839fc8e4_WP_20160604_018.jpg

CRANBURY, NJ – The sweetest ingredient lending flavor to Saturday's Strawberry Festival wasn't the ice cream, the pound or angel food cake or even the strawberries themselves. It was, instead, the measure of human kindness mixed into the day.

According to Janice Luffey, monitor of the deacons at The First Presbyterian Church of Cranbury, the festival is an annual event the deacons organize to raise money for the church's benevolence fund.

“People who are in need come to us and we give them money if they need it,” she said. “We can get three or four requests in one month and we can also go three months without any requests, so it's kind of a hit or miss thing.”

Sign Up for E-News

Numbering between 14 and 25, the deacons oversee the benevolence fund and determine how the money is allocated, according to Deacon Andy Kremann.

Most of the requests received are to meet basic needs in the local community, Luffey said.

“We have seniors that have sent us requests that they need electric paid,” she said. “We've also had people email or call us that they're about to be evicted, they need this much money for their rent.”
According to Luffey, all requests for help are investigated to make sure the need is real.

Nearby streets were lined with cars, with hardly a parking spot to be had, as residents came out en masse to support the festival, which is a fixture on the community events calendar as outside temperatures flirt with summer.

In addition to the fund-raising aspect of the event, Luffey said it was heartening to see children playing outside and families enjoying time together.

“The one gentleman who has older kids said, 'Boy guys, I'm so glad that you suggested we come and do this today. It's been fun,'” she said. “And that's what you want to hear. You want to hear about the families having fun.”

As the afternoon wound to a close, children ran from game to game in the slanting sunlight, pausing to ask the clown for a balloon animal or get their faces painted.

With an open emergency vehicle, members of the Cranbury Volunteer Fire Company were on hand to answer questions about the rig from curious bystanders.

Volunteers from the Cranbury Presbyterian Nursery School and the church's Vacation Bible School program were also available with information about their respective organizations.

For those whose appetites craved savory as well as sweet, the Boy Scouts served up traditional summer fare, with grilled hot dogs and hamburgers, which could be purchased separately.

In her second year running the event, Luffey said that the weather for this year's festival was “phenomenal.”

Turnout this year seemed a little better than last year, she said, however, actual attendance numbers were unavailable.

Tickets for the event were $7 per person or $28 for a family pack, according to Luffey.

Did you like this story?

Give us your feedback at ckim@tapinto.net or nwells@tapinto.net and support local news.

If you did like it, please share with your friends and followers on Facebook and Twitter, and don't forget to "Like" our Facebook Page!

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

South Brunswick-Cranbury

Police Blotter

South Brunswick and Cranbury Police Blotter

August 9, 2017

Sponsored by Reilly's Collision Center in Monmouth Junction. Click here and scroll down for the latest updates and alerts from South Brunswick and Cranbury Police.

See the most recent messages from South Brunswick Twp Police Department, powered by Nixle.

Upcoming Events

Sun, February 25, 11:00 AM

East Brunswick Jewish Center, East Brunswick

PurimFest

Arts & Entertainment Other Religions And Spirituality

Sun, February 25, 1:00 PM

St. David's Episcopal Church, Cranbury

Organizing for the 2018 Mid-terms: Elections, ...

Education Giving Back Government

Sat, March 3

New Jersey Dance Theatre Ensemble, Summit

NJDTE Summer Dance Intensive & Young Dancers ...

Arts & Entertainment Education

Nutley Police Department: Video Does Not Contain Direct Threat to Nutley Public Schools

February 16, 2018

NUTLEY, NJ - The Nutley Police Department report that the video that led to Nutley Public Schools being closed did not post a direct threat to any of the township's schools.

Police report that the person responsible for the video has been cooperating with the Nutley Police Department in their investigation. Interviews are on-going, The department is also investigating all ...

East Brunswick Business Owner Sues to Stop New Hotel Going Up in New Brunswick

February 16, 2018

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ -The owners of an East Brunswick hotel are suing to halt the construction of another such establishment a few miles away in New Brunswick.

Shan & Dylan LLC, who own a Comfort Suites just off Route 18, filed suit in an effort to press the New Brunswick Planning Board to rescind its approval of the four-story hotel, which ​was issued in November.

That proposal calls for ...

South Brunswick: Volunteer Soccer Coach Charged With Possessing And Distributing Child Pornography

SOUTH BRUNSWICK, NJ – A volunteer youth soccer coach and former Sunday school teacher is charged with possessing and distributing child pornography, officials said Thursday.

FBI agents and local law enforcement arrested Waldo Milla-Guerra, 49, at his Kendall Park home Thursday morning after executing a search warrant, officials said.

Milla-Guerra, a volunteer soccer coach with the ...

Rutgers to Host Exhibit of Sen. Frank Lautenberg Papers

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - Frank Lautenberg, New Jersey’s longest-serving U.S. senator, left an outsize imprint on state politics and national policy by the time he died while in office, in 2013.

His papers, now curated and maintained by the Rutgers University Libraries, encompass 2,250 boxes of hats, buttons, campaign stickers, vinyl records, paper documents and other artifacts that, laid end ...

Super Carb Diet by Bob Harper

Super Carb Diet by Bob Harper with Danny Pellegrino (St. Martin's Press, 2017)

It's hard to go on a serious diet, one on which you expect to be successful and maintain a loss. Fortunately, in his new book Super Carb Diet, Bob Harper has given the weight watching world a sensible new diet plan to help achieve a healthy weight.

Harper, host of NBC's popular show The Biggest Loser, ...

Two Nights by Kathy Reichs

Two Nights by Kathy Reichs (Bantom,2017)

How does a writer of a beloved series like Harry Potter or Temperance Brennan break out of their readers' expectations and try something new? For J.K. Rowlings it was the novels penned under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith; books about a maimed and very flawed private detective with the unlikely name of Cormoran Strike. For Kathy Reichs, it is the ...

Rep. Watson Coleman Statement on Indictment of 13 Russian Nationals

February 20, 2018

Washington, D.C. — Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ) issued the following statement in response to the announcement by the office of Special Counsel Robert Mueller of indictments of Russian businesses and nationals for a criminal conspiracy to interfere with the presidential election in 2016:

“Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s indictments are the latest ...

Hearts for Horses Fundraiser on Feb. 23 benefits SPUR

Come in from the cold and join Special People United to Ride, Inc. (SPUR) at its Hearts for Horses Fundraiser on Friday, Feb. 23, 2018 at 6:30 p.m.

All proceeds will benefit the SPUR Scholarship Fund. The event will be hosted by On the Deck Restaurant and Bar and will feature live music and a 50/50 raffle. Food will be available for purchase.

Tickets can be obtained for $25 at ...

Author Donates Portion Of Sales To Equestrian Aid Foundation

WELLINGTON, Fla. — Author Shane Ledyard will donate a portion of the paperback sales of his latest book, “Sycamore Whispers,” to the Equestrian Aid Foundation through February.

Equestrian Aid Foundation provides financial assistance to horse people from all corners of the U.S. equestrian world who are facing catastrophic injury or illness.

Purchase “Sycamore ...

How to Talk with Kids About the Florida Shooting

February 15, 2018

Guest Column

The tragedy of the Florida school shooting is devastating leaving 17 killed and 15 injured. Our children can easily identify with what occurred yesterday. It will be the topic of conversation today in schools everywhere. School administrators are doing all they can to provide support and guidance. The shootings affect children, teachers, and school personnel. The ...