CEDAR GROVE, NJ – Cedar Grove Wine Cellar has made a habit of giving back to the community, but this holiday season they are taking it a step further by lending a hand to Santa himself.  As the sponsor of the New Jersey Cervical Cancer Coalition’s (NJ-NCCC) Santa Night, they will help Santa and his “sleigh” full of elves travel to local bars and restaurants on Dec.11 to raise money to fight cervical cancer. 

With Cedar Grove Wine Cellar supporting them Santa, Mrs. Claus and their crew of helpers will board a bus at Just Jake’s in Montclair that Friday night and begin their journey to raise money and awareness for the NJ-NCCC.  This year they will be visiting venues in Montclair, Bloomfield, Little Falls, Cedar Grove, Verona and the Caldwells, bringing Christmas carols and holiday cheer while collecting donations as they go. 

This will be the 7th Annual Santa Night which was started in memory of Cary Anne Cowan, a Montclair resident who lost her battle with cervical cancer in 2007 at the age of 36 after being diagnosed only three months earlier.  Cowan’s sister and co-chair of the NJ-NCCC Sandy Fischer of Montclair organized  the first Santa night and Courtney Coffin of Cedar Grove, who was a friend of Cowan’s, has assisted her over the past several years, eventually joining her as co-chair of the chapter.

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Junior Patel and Jay Jariwala of Cedar Grove Wine Cellar said they first heard about Santa Night from  Coffin and her husband Brian who are customers and friends.  In business a little over a year, Cedar Grove Wine Cellar  has already made giving back to the community a priority, most recently supporting the Cedar Grove Fire Department’s Chili Cookoff to benefit Cedar Grove resident Bill Fearon, by holding a wine tasting at the event and offering a portion of proceeds from resulting wine sales to Fearon.  When the Coffins told Patel about Santa Night he offered his help on the spot. 

 “I got involved because the Coffins asked me to and I wanted to support them,” Patel said.  “They are like family.  They support me so I want to support them.”

Fischer and Coffin both expressed their gratitude to Patel and Jariwala for their support, saying Cedar Grove Wine Cellar has gone above and beyond in providing food and drink for Santa and his elves on their busy night.

“Junior and Jay have become good friends of ours and they are very generous to the community,” Coffin said.  “They are always willing to help and when Junior heard about Santa Night he immediately said we could have whatever we needed.”

“He is providing us with anything and everything we require,” Fischer said.  “Food, beverages – Cedar Grove Wine Cellar is giving us all that we need for a successful evening.”

Last year’s Santa Night had its best year to date, raising just over $10,000 and Fischer and Coffin are hoping this year will be even more successful.  As part of the fundraising efforts, each elf must earn his or her spot on Santa’s sleigh by raising $250 in donations.  To help these prospective elves earn their way, please click here to visit the fundraising website. 

If you prefer to donate in person, meet up with Santa and his elves at any of the scheduled “rooftops” they plan to visit that night.  In addition, they will be visiting Cedar Grove Wine Cellar at approximately 8:15 p.m. that evening so Santa can say a special thanks to Patel and Jariwala in person.

Below is the tentative rooftop schedule, so please come out to see Santa and his helpers and support this worthy cause.  Please check NJ-NCCC’s Facebook page for the most up-to-date schedule. 

  • 5:30  p.m.     Just Jakes, 30 Park Street Montclair
  • 5:55 p.m.      Town Pub, 378 Broad Street, Bloomfield
  • 6:25 p.m.      Maggie’s Town Tavern, 10 Van Ness Avenue, Little Falls
  • 6:50 p.m.      Alexus Steakhouse, 955 Valley Road Clifton
  • 7:10 p.m.      Nauna’s, 148 Valley Road, Montclair
  • 7:20 p.m.      Frank Anthony, 667 Bloomfield Avenue, Verona
  • 7:35 p.m.      Cloverleaf, 395 Bloomfield Avenue, Caldwell
  • 7:45 p.m.      Ringside Pub, 379 Bloomfield Avenue, Caldwell
  • 7:55 p.m.      Forte, 182 Bloomfield Avenue, Caldwell
  • 8:10 p.m.      Lombardi’s, 599 Pompton Avenue, Cedar Grove
  • 8:20 p.m.      Grasshopper, 292 Grove Avenue, Cedar Grove
  • 9 p.m.          Tierney’s, 136 Valley Road, Montclair
  • 9:35 p.m.      Maggie’s Town Tavern, 10 Van Ness Avenue, Little Falls
  • 9:55 p.m.      381 Main Street, Little Falls
  • 10:10 p.m.    Grasshopper, 292 Grove Avenue, Cedar Grove
  • 10:40 p.m.    The Hat, 36 Harrison Avenue, West Orange
  • 11:40 p.m.    Just Jakes, 30 Park Street, Montclair

In addition to raising funds, Santa Night is also about raising awareness of cervical cancer.  According to Fischer, when cervical cancer is detected early, it is usually 100% curable, but most of the time there are no early signs or symptoms.  It is estimated that 80% of women and men will come into contact with it during their life.  The best way to screen for HPV or cervical cancer is for women to have annual pap smears.  There is also a vaccine for HPV for both boys and girls (starting at age 9-26).  For more information, visit www.nccc-online.org

TAP into Verona/Cedar Grove thanks Cedar Grove Wine Cellar for their continuing support in helping us to deliver important news to the residents of our community on a daily basis. Because of sponsors like Cedar Grove Wine Cellar, TAP into Verona/Cedar Grove is completely free to subscribers.

To learn more about becoming a sponsor, contact Cheryl Brown at 201-723-0913.