Residents were able to shop guilt free on Sunday, Nov. 20, knowing that some of their money would be donated to charity.
Lisa Conte-Wiener, organizer of the event held at the West Long Branch Community Center, created Shop For A Cause with hopes of not only helping charities, but shoppers as well.
"Since the economy is suffering, I wanted to make shopping easier for customers, while also contributing to charities," said Conte-Wiener.
Her idea became a success as numerous buyers came out to guiltlessly spend their money which not only benefited them, but several organizations in return.
"Knowing all of the money is actually being donated to a good cause makes me feel so much better about spending it," stated Danielle Johnstone, a customer of Shop For A Cause.
Johnstone, along with countless other shoppers enjoyed browsing vendors' tables along with raffle prizes and light fare all provided by local businesses.
Vendors who participated in the event included Blooms in Bloom, who donated to Dress For Success, Discovery Toys who donated to Project Ladybug, and Willow House who supported Habitat for Humanity.
Other contributing vendors such as Pampered Chef, Sole Solution, Crazy Cake Pops, Silpada, and Paws and Pose, donated to additional charities including Autism Speaks, Sweet JAW, Homes for our Troops, 180 Turning Lives Around, Save US Pets, and Ronald McDonald House.
As an entry free, attendees were asked to bring a nonperishable food item to be donated to Move For Hunger, another beneficiary of the event. Move For Hunger is a non-profit organization that works with moving companies in assisting community food banks.
Adam Lowy, Executive Director of Move For Hunger, had the chance to reach out to customers of Shop For A Cause and bring awareness to their current contest that gives their company a chance to win a $1 million grant from Chase Bank. To vote, check out their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/MoveForHunger.