The annual March of Dimes "Pick a Pumpkin" promotion is being conducted through Nov. 1 to support March of Dimes programs that improve the health of mothers and babies.
Sovereign Bank is participating in the promotion for the 10th year. Customers may purchase the pumpkins at their local Sovereign Bank for $1 to $5 each and then write their name on them for display at the bank. The banks will also be distributing March of Dimes pamphlets to educate women of childbearing age about the importance of managing stress in their lives, particularly during pregnancy, and recognizing the signs of preterm labor, which can be brought on by stress, according to some studies. Babies who are born preterm are at higher risk of long-term health problems and of dying, than babies born at full term (40 weeks).
Funds raised through Pick a Pumpkin support research and programs which will help the March of Dimes address critical issues facing the Central Jersey area, including premature birth, low birth weight and access to prenatal care.
Businesses and companies who would like to participate in the program may call (609) 655-7400.
Ocean County College, Toms River, broke ground Oct. 8 on a new college/community softball field. Slated to open for play in August, the field will be a gated National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) regulated field with a warning track, dugouts and bullpens with fencing 225 feet down the foul lines. According to Ilene Cohen, OCC athletic director, this will be the first softball facility on the campus to be used by the intercollegiate team, activity classes, intramurals and the Ocean County community.
The architectural firm of Pravin Patel Associates Inc. designed the field. The contractor is Down to Earth Landscaping Inc. Total construction cost is $222,725. The construction completion date is April 1 but will need until the August opening day to grow in properly, college officials said. The college’s future plans for the softball field include adding a press box and spectator seating, as well as the possibility of lights to host evening games.
Dr. Robert C. Pedersen, of Brick, recently participated in the annual Center for Research into Safety and Health program, hosted by the Spine Research Institute of San Diego, a motor vehicle crash injury research center.
CRASH is a nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing the public health and welfare by improving the crash worthiness of cars, light trucks, sport utility vehicles and vans.
For the past 17 years, the Spine Research Institute has focused on spinal injuries sustained in motor vehicle crashes, such as whiplash and mild traumatic brain injury. Over 3 million such injuries occur each year and result in debilitating injuries in an estimated 500,000 people at a total cost in excess of $28 billion.
By observing staged crashes using crash dummies, Pedersen learned about the forces and loads imposed upon people’s spines and brains in car accidents. The goal of the program is to give doctors such as Pedersen an added understanding of the biomechanics of such trauma so diagnostic methods and treatments can be more effectively administered.
My Gym children’s fitness centers announced the opening of a new gym in Allaire Plaza, 1933 Route 35, Wall Township. Owned by Kim and Nigel Wright and directed by Jamie Lee Bruesehoff, the gym, which opened Oct. 17, caters to children from ages 3 months to 9 years.
Ocean County Freeholder Joseph H. Vicari was presented with a plaque from Ocean County Deputy Clerk Carl W. Block in recognition of Vicari’s selection as the 2003 Italian American of the Year by the members of the Brick Chapter of UNICO at the Fourth Annual Christopher Columbus Brunch held Oct. 5. UNICO is an Italian/American Service Organization that grants scholarships, supports charities and sponsors community and civic activities. Vicari was recognized as the 2003 Italian American of the Year as a result of his significant contributions and dedicated service to the residents of Ocean County.