Downtown Toms River is thinking spring throughout the entire month of April. Head outdoors all month long to explore an artistic collaboration between the Toms River Arts Community (TRAC) and Toms River High School South’s (TRSHS) Art Department. While you’re out and about, you’re bound to get hungry, which is why we’ve rounded up some of the best places to savor some lunch bites in Downtown Toms River. April is all about art – whether it’s in the gallery or on your plate!
Featured Event: TRAC and High School Artists Featured in The Downtown Shops Gallery
The TRAC collaborates with the Art Department of TRSHS this month where students will submit their work to be judged by three TRAC members including mixed media artist, Travis Applegate, oil painter Glenn Christian Johnson, and photographer, Frank Parisi. Awarded student works will be hung on the Featured Artist wall inside gallery with additional student submissions displayed in the activity room.
The gallery, located in The Downtown Shops @ 53 Main regularly showcases TRAC member art, giving you an opportunity to explore established artists as well as budding artists within your community. The public is invited to attend a reception to celebrate the students’ artwork on Thursday, April 19th from 5-7pm. (The gallery’s regular hours are Monday – Saturday 10:00am – 6:00pm).
Featured Businesses: Lunch and Dinner Spots in Downtown Toms River
We gave you our list of can’t miss breakfast spots all over Downtown Toms River, now it’s time to move to the next two meals of the day – lunch and dinner! Whether you’re in the mood for pizza, a sandwich, or even a salad, there are plenty of places that will keep you coming back for more.
To satisfy that pizza craving, head to Capone’s Gourmet Pizza & Pasta (17 Washington Street, Toms River 732-473-1777). Their menu covers everything from classic pies like Margherita that are baked in their wood fired brick oven to traditional Italian specialties like Pollo Saltimbocca, and even weekly lunch specials – it’s not shocking to come here for lunch and for dinner. Then there’s Brooklyn Bistro (44 Washington Street, Toms River 732-244-2122) where you’ll dine on authentic Italian dishes along with signature sandwiches, and thin crust pizzas with recipe roots in Italy and Brooklyn. Bring a date and your own bottle of wine!
Looking for a restaurant with a little spice? Check out Island Creole Kitchen (73 Main Street, Toms River 732-551-2462) where menu items like the Jerk Chicken and Empanadas will turn your day into a Caribbean holiday. It’s Downtown Toms River’s very own diamond in the rough! You can also check out Moe’s Southwest Grill (1 Rt. 37, Toms River 732-608-9733) for fast Southwestern style dishes on the go!
At The Office Lounge (820 Main Street, Toms River 732-349-0800) you’ll be a part of the local scene, whether you’re stopping in for some lunch, an after work drink, or dinner out. Hanging strong for over two decades, you can’t go wrong with anything on their menu from cheesesteaks to sushi. Then there’s Baker’s Water Street Bar & Grille (4 Robbins Parkway, Toms River 732-240-4800), a welcome addition to Downtown Toms River’s gorgeous waterfront. Stop in for daily food and drink specials, live music, and of course – a view of the river.
Finally, we can’t forget Jersey Mike’s Subs (1 Rt. 37, Toms River 848-221-2472), a business that brought Jersey’s love of subs to the nation and Boston Market (141 Rt. 37, Toms River 732-914-8900) that combines comfort food with convenience.
Not to be forgotten, a number of breakfast spots that we listed in last month’s blog also serve lunch and/or dinner. Check out March’s post for more details on Bagel Bistro, Café Enigma (that’s where we ate that beautiful bowl of tuna and noodles pictured above), A Thyme for All Seasons, Shut Up & Eat, CK’s, Poppy’s, Perkins, Daddio’s, Shut Up & Eat, Dunkin’ Donuts, and Perkins.
Featured News: Toms River’s Redevelopment Plan Moves Forward
On February 13th, the council members voted unanimously to purchase The Red Carpet Inn, which is located within the redevelopment plan, through negotiation or eminent domain. The hotel property is also located in a flood zone. The purchase would allow the township to build a berm to help with flood control in the low-lying areas of the downtown. To view the redevelopment plan click here.
Looking Ahead to May: A Chili and Salsa Cook-Off, Theater, and a Trolley
Next month, Downtown Toms River will host their annual NJ State Chili & Salsa Cook-Off on May 19th – a spicy and delicious way to celebrate the warmer days ahead. We’ll also get to check out the Exit 82 Theater Company as they return for the summer, and Downtown Toms River’s latest mode of transportation – a new trolley!