Chicken Dishes at Jason Voorhees, South Jersey Raises Funds for Ukraine | Local News
As the war in Ukraine rages on, the people of New Jersey are desperate to help in any way they can.
Individuals, restaurants and businesses have undertaken creative efforts to bring some kind of relief to the suffering people and to the Ukrainian Armed Forces, all with similar motivations but unique approaches.
The church picnic
Benjamin Romanik, Millville town commissioner and parishioner of St. Nicholas Ukrainian Catholic Church in Millville, has been receiving daily phone calls since the war began from people asking how and where they can donate.
On March 1, shortly after the war began, Romanik raised the Ukrainian flag at Captain Buck Waterfront Park.
Dressed in yellow and blue, the colors of the Ukrainian flag, Romanik said: “Привіт, мене звати Бенджамін Романік, і я гордий українець, which translates to “.”ь-американ, which translates as “.”
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Romanik and his family are of Ukrainian descent, as are most of the members of St. Nicholas.
Reverend Eugène Moniuk de Saint-Nicolas has been a “nervous wreck” since the war began, Romanik said, because his family is in Ukraine.
Previously, St. Nicholas sent all monetary donations he received to the Ukrainian Catholic Archeparchy of Philadelphia.
He is now directing his efforts towards a fundraising picnic on April 30 with live music, games and activities for children, and food. He is expecting 500 people at the event, along with help from the local Boy Scout troop, Smith & Jackson Military Antiques and Firearms and Glasstown Brewing Co.
The event will take place from noon to 5 p.m. Admission is $20, plus $10 for refreshments.
The moment Jack Wright, owner of the Exit Zero gas station in Cape May, saw news stories of children in Ukraine on the sidewalks with small suitcases ready to flee, he wanted to help in any way he could.
Wright thought back to a Ukrainian artist on Etsy he had commissioned for artwork and ceramic dishes for his restaurant. He reached out and asked which charities in Ukraine needed the most support.
Come Back Alive is one of the largest Ukrainian foundations whose donations directly support the Ukrainian Armed Forces. Their transparency as an organization appealed to Wright.
“They need ammunition, they need to defend themselves,” Wright said.
With the help of Exit Zero manager Katie Dowe, Wright took to Facebook to announce that starting March 7, the restaurant would be serving a Kyiv chicken dish for $25, with proceeds from each dish donated. at Come Back Alive.
Chicken kyiv is a traditional Ukrainian dish. Exit Zero put their own twist on it by serving a garlic and parmesan stuffed chicken breast with Lyonnaise potatoes and a bahi onion topped with garlic butter.
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Exit Zero Chef Mike Zsuffa described the dish as very basic and simple to prepare.
“Jack asked me on Saturday, we were doing it on Monday,” Zsuffa said.
Wright thought about putting Chicken Kyiv on the menu months ago, before the war. He remembers growing up in Scotland in the 70s and going to England to eat the classic dish.
They raised a total of $5,300 from the dish. Wright sent the profits to the foundation at the end of each week.
He hopes Exit Zero’s efforts can help someone buy a few more weapons to defend themselves or keep someone alive for another day.
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For the first two weeks of the war, all Brian Emenheiser did was watch the news. Seeing the devastation, he couldn’t help but think, “What if it was us?
Emenheiser said he admires Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy for supporting his people, visiting hospitals and front lines rather than staying in his bunker.
“He reminds me of Bill Pullman from ‘Independence Day,'” he said.
The Vineland resident calls on the powers of another famous movie character in an attempt to be a force for good for the people of Ukraine.
Emenheiser – or South Jersey Jason as some locals call him – cosplays as Jason Voorhees from the “Friday the 13th” films and will be a guest at Level Up Entertainment’s Free Comic Book Day, where he will raise funds for the efforts of UNICEF in Ukraine.
Anyone who would like a photo with Emenheiser in costume can make a monetary donation of any amount, with 100% of proceeds going to UNICEF.
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Emenheiser works at the Arc of Atlantic County, so with a lot of experience developing fundraisers, he wanted to merge something he loved with something in his nature, helping people.
Last September marked three years of Emenheiser cosplaying as Jason, and December marked two years where he merged cosplay with fundraising, having held at least six different fundraising events every year since.
There were plenty of cosplay groups doing charity work in the tri-state area, but none with a horror cosplayer, Emenheiser said, and he wanted to change that.
Free Comic Book Day will take place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on May 7 at the Hamilton Mall in Mays Landing. In addition to free comics, there will be local comic artists, vendors, and cosplay contests. In addition to offering photo ops, Emenheiser will be raffling off a “Friday the 13th” themed wreath by Etsy artist Nadine Mothershed.