Monthly Archives: September 2022


JBJ Soul Kitchen 7th Annual Chili Cook-Off

TOMS RIVER, NJ – One of our most popular fundraising events is back! The JBJ Soul Kitchen 7th Annual Chili Cook-Off, Presented by Vydia, honors and thanks local first responders for their dedicated service to our community. JBJ Soul Kitchen Toms River will host its 7th Annual Chili Cook-Off on Sunday, October 16 from 1:00 – 4:00 PM at 1769 Hooper Avenue in Toms River, NJ. Fire, EMS and police departments, as well as First AID Squads, participate for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place in the annual Fall event. For a $20 Pay It Forward donation, guests are given the opportunity to taste all the featured chili entries and vote for their favorite. Healthy, seasonal appetizers created by Executive Chef Rob Wood will be available for all guests. Free children’s activities provided by Home Run Party Entertainment, including face painting, balloon twisting, glitter tattoos & more!

“Our Chili Cook-Off is a great yearly event that everyone loves and looks forward to,” said Lou Morreale, General Manager of both restaurants. “The competition is fierce, and the victory is sweet! Not to mention, the Chili Chef First Responders that compete are super creative with their take on chili!”

An additional opportunity to purchase ceramic bowls from the “Every Bowl Feeds a Soul” Empty Bowls Event will be available for a $20 Pay It Forward donation. Your donation feeds families and individuals in need. Bowls were hand-crafted by students throughout New Jersey as a part of a year-long effort to raise hunger awareness in our area.

“This is one of my favorite events,” said Joanne Gwin, Community Coordinator of JBJ Soul Kitchen Toms River. “It is an opportunity for everyone attending to be part of something bigger than themselves. Everyone attending the event Pays It Forward with their entrance fee, and each Pay It Forward provides a meal for someone in the community who is facing food insecurity.”

Fulfill’s People’s Pantry, of The B.E.A.T. Center, will be hosting a “Holiday Wish List” food drive during the Chili Cook-Off. They are asking attendees to bring non-perishable food items such as canned vegetables, boxed potatoes and stuffing, spices, baking items and mixes, and the donation of manual can openers is also greatly appreciated! This will be in effort to help make the holidays a bit brighter for those who are suffering from food insecurity.

Where:  JBJ Soul Kitchen Toms River, 1769 Hooper Avenue Toms River, NJ 08753

List of Expected Participants (subject to change) – Be sure to support your local first responders!

  • Lanoka Harbor EMS
  • Melrose Hose Company/Sayreville Fire Department
  • NJ State Police-Holmdel
  • Ocean County Sheriffs PBA Local 379
  • President Park Fire Co/Sayreville Fire Department
  • Sayreville Engine Co #1/Sayreville Fire Department
  • Sayreville Police Department
  • Six Flags EMS
  • Toms River Fire Co #1
  • Union Beach Police Department

For Additional Information: