25 restaurants participating in second annual Ales for Whales

A jersey, photo and puck, each signed by former Philadelphia Flyers great Dave 'The Hammer' Schultz, and framed and donated by Stan Weiner of Absecon Variety Store, will be auctioned off Thursday evening at Garden State Beer Company in Galloway during the second annual Ales for Whales benefit for the Marine Mammal Stranding Center.


Along with brews provided by event host Garden State Beer Co., the second Ales for Whales fundraiser for Brigantine's Marine Mammal Stranding Center will feature culinary samplings from 25 restaurants.

Ales for Whales takes place 6-9 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 25 at Garden State's craft brewery and tasting room at 247 E. White Horse Pike in Galloway Township. Admission is $35 in advance and $40 at the door and includes food, beer and entertainment. Tickets can be purchased in advance at mmsc.org.

There will be nearly 50 donated items to bid on through basket and silent auctions.

“The one live auction item we'll have will be an autographed Dave Schultz hockey jersey mounted in a shadow box that Stan Weiner of Absecon Variety Store donated to us. He did a gorgeous job putting that together,” said Marine Mammal Stranding Center director of special events Peggy Tomeo-Richards. 

Dave "The Hammer" Schultz was a key member of the Philadelphia Flyers that won the Stanley Cup in back-to-back years — 1974 and '75 — the only two NHL championships the Flyers have won thus far. Schultz still holds the single-season NHL record for penalty minutes with 472, nearly 40 years after his playing days ended.

Guests can buy a sheet of 26 tickets for $20 to place in the receptacles for the basket items they wish to win. A winning ticket will be drawn for each basket.

For silent-auction items, a minimum bid is determined based on the value of each item, such as a golf outing for four at a local course, and guests write down their bids and place them in a container. The highest bidder takes the prize.

Food available for sampling includes sesame-crusted ahi tuna pan-seared rare with a teriyaki glaze, citrus slaw, crunchy wonton strips and wasabi ailoi donated by Fred & Ethel's Lantern Light Tavern of Smithville; sautéed chicken breast tossed with penne pasta, sun-dried tomatoes and rosa sauce by Ventura’s Offshore Café of Northfield; eggplant parmesan and cold shrimp salad by Casaldi’s Cucina of Linwood; pan-seared zucchini and feta cakes with a side of tzatziki sauce, and stuffed mushrooms with spinach, sundried tomato and asiago cheese drizzled with balsamic reduction by Celina’s Mulberry Market & Grille of Galloway, and many more.

Garden State Beer Co. co-owner and tasting room manager Carisa Stairs said beers will include the Cream of the Crop Ale, described as a crisp, dry beer similar to an American standard lager but brewed at lower temperatures to give it more flavor and malt presence.

Another will be the Blue Jersey American Wheat, described as having a touch of fruit flavor balanced with the softness of wheat malt, and accented with subtle peppery spice of German noble hops.

For the beer enthusiast who prefers a more earthy, hoppy taste, the Absecon Bay IPA will be offered. A session ale — meaning it has relatively low alcohol by volume — it is an India pale ale that “balances classic West Coast hops with a sturdy malt backbone, smoothed out with a British yeast character,” according to Stairs' description.

Several corporate sponsors are responsible for making Ales for Whales possible, according to Tomeo-Richards, including Atlantic Coast Moving and Storage, CASA Payroll Services, Curexa Pharmacy and International Game Technology, all located in Egg Harbor Township; Fulton Bank of New Jersey in Galloway, Friedman LLP in Linwood, Peter Lumber Co. in Pleasantville, Shoreline Freezers in Bridgeton, TowBoat U.S. in Brigantine, G. Kurtz Construction LLC in New Gretna and Crawlspace Solutions LLC in Manasquan.

The Marine Mammal Stranding Center is celebrating its 40th anniversary this year. On average, it rescues and rehabilitates 150 to 200 marine mammals and sea turtles annually that have become sick or injured and returns them to the wild. Since its 1978 founding by Bob Schoelkopf and Sheila Dean, the center has rescued more than 5,000 animals.

For more information see mmsc.org or gardenstatebeerco.com.

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