As unlikely as it might seem, jewelry, bagels, orchids and surfboards have something in common with handmade glass, honey, cosmetics, flags, beer, chocolate, tea and more.
Give up? They are all made in Monmouth County.
These and other items produced in Monmouth County, will be on display during the county’s first “Made in Monmouth” event to be held March 31 at Monmouth University in West Long Branch. The event is being held to draw attention to businesses that manufacture products right here at home and to give people the opportunity to shop local.
“Monmouth County has a long and rich heritage producing goods and services,” Freeholder Deputy Director Thomas A. Arnone said. “From our earliest days of lumber, food, iron and boat building to today’s high-tech graphics and the arts, Monmouth County has always been creative and productive, bringing top-quality merchandise to markets here and around the world.”
Keyport was home to Aeromarine, which converted military aircraft to civilian service beginning in 1921. And some of the nation’s largest uniform manufacturers were in Red Bank, Long Branch and Neptune City. There even was a Wall Township company that made NASCAR racecars and there still is one of the most successful engine builders for custom cars, trucks and hot rods in Freehold.
“Today, Monmouth County produces sophisticated custom motorcycles, emergency vehicles, coffee, specialty teas and much more,” Arnone added. “I’m proud that our residents can be creative and prosper while giving consumers the option of shopping locally.”
Made in Monmouth is organized by the Grow Monmouth team within the county’s Department of Economic Development. Grow Monmouth officials have met with hundreds of business, civic and government leaders in recent months to provide state-of-the-art information services. It has become a major public-private project to create and preserve jobs in Monmouth County.
The department has identified many manufacturers who have been invited to display their wares at no cost. Meanwhile, all interested producers and manufacturers are encouraged to register online at www.visitmonmouth.com or contact the department at (732) 431-7470 and ask for John Ciufo or Amy Fitzgerald for more information.
The list of participating vendors will be published on the county Web site at www.visitmonmouth.com.