Highlands, NJ – Clean Ocean Action (COA) kicked-off the holiday SEAson with its fundraiser “Fire & Ice” on Saturday, December 10th at Windows on the Water (of Surfrider Beach Club) in Sea Bright, NJ. Over three hundred friends of the ocean came out to celebrate the joys of the ocean and to support COA’s year-round effort to keep the ocean clean and safe for all to enjoy. Funds raised from the event will help support COA’s on-going work to protect the ocean, surroundings waterways, and their resources.
The night began with a fire-inspired cocktail hour featuring libations sponsored by Tito’s Handmade Vodka and wine and beer by Shore Point Distributors with music by the Taylor Tote Band. Guests feasted on the bounty from the sea at the gourmet raw bar provided by The Lusty Lobster, as well as delicious dinner selections by Chef Pete Cruz of Windows on the Water. The merriment continued as the evening transitioned from fire to an ice theme with live music from the Jersey Shore-based contemporary band, The Haven, featuring special guest Thom White.
"The ocean provides endless waves of joy and memories year-round, whether it’s diving into the crisp clear waters on a hot summer day or watching the seals bask on a snow covered beach," said Cindy Zipf, COA’s Executive Director. “You may never know that defending these ecological and economic resources from harm never ends and it requires vigilance and tenacity. COA not only watches over the ocean to prevent harmful industrialization and sources of pollution but also ensures that all waterways that flow to the ocean are clean. That is why we launched “Rally for the Navesink” this past year. “Fire and Ice” provides an opportunity for supporters to get together and help sustain our work to ensure a healthy ocean for families and fish -- for today and the future”.
Lisa and Ken Wilson, long-time, dedicated ocean advocates and supporters of Clean Ocean Action, co-chaired the benefit. “We were privileged to chair this important fundraising event for COA, the proceeds of which will help protect our ocean and waterways, a most precious asset available for all of us to enjoy. We are grateful for all the true-blue Friends of the Sea who came out to support this important fundraiser, celebrate the countless days we enjoyed along the shore in all seasons and demonstrate a commitment to the ongoing promotion of Clean Ocean Action and their important mission,” the Wilsons stated.
The event was hosted by the LoBiondo Family, owners of Surfrider Beach Club and Windows on the Water. Mr. James LoBiondo of Surfrider Beach Club said, “From when our family bought Surfrider Beach Club in 1986 to now, the quality of the water has tremendously improved and COA is hugely responsible for that. Since I was 10 years old, I never saw whales and dolphins so frequently until recently and the dramatic increase is due to the cleaner waters. We appreciate all that Clean Ocean Action does to protect the shore and we are honored to host the event. We are happy to give back to the community. It’s a legacy that was instilled in our family by our mom, Denise LoBiondo.”
Along with maintaining COA’s year-round work to keep the ocean clean and safe for all to enjoy, funds raised from “Fire & Ice” will provide essential support for the organization’s variety of successful programs, including educational resources and activities, state of the art scientific research, water quality monitoring, community and citizen action campaigns, and so much more.
For more information about Clean Ocean Action, please visit www.cleanoceanaction.org. ###