By DON STINE
NEPTUNE TOWNSHIP – This year’s annual Neptune Mayor’s Ball raised more money than ever- and all going toward a good cause.
Mayor Eric Houghtaling said that the ball raised $50,000.
“That’s the most we’ve ever raised and it will all go to Mary’s Place,” he said.
Mary’s Place By The Sea in Ocean Grove, a temporary home for women fighting cancer, was the recipient of funds raised from the 20th annual Neptune Mayor’s Ball.
Approximately 400 people attended the ball, held at the Jumping Brook Country Club Fri., May 31.
“People were very generous and both corporate and small businesses helped us out. Township people really displayed their generosity,” Houghtaling said. Mary’s Place founder Michele Gannon said she couldn’t be more pleased with the ball.
“The evening was incredible – it was just such a wonderful time and we felt completely embraced by the community,” she said.
Gannon said she is “excited the night was so successful” and that everyone enjoyed themselves.
“And we are so grateful to everyone that participated,” she said.
And Gannon said that the Mayor’s Ball money is a “substantial contribution” for her organization.
“This will keep the house going and sustain us for awhile. This will go a long way!” she said.
Residents at Mary’s Place stay for free and funds from events, like the Mayor’s Ball, are used to pay household expenses, like rent, food, and services for the women. “We are very grateful for those who support us so we can keep these services free,” Gannon said.
Gannon founded Mary’s Place By the Sea, at 15 Broadway, in 2009 as a resource for women undergoing treatment for cancer after herself recovering from a non-life threatening illness earlier.
Since then, hundreds of women have benefited from the peaceful care, concern and support there. Mary’s Place is located in a three-story Victorian homes that faces Fletcher Lake and is just one block west of the Atlantic Ocean.