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 Acupuncturists Wanamassa, NJ

If you're new to holistic healing, acupuncture may seem intimidating. You might be wondering how needles pressed into your skin could possibly make you feel better. Wouldn't someone pushing a needle into your back be painful? As it turns out, acupuncture is far from painful and is quickly becoming one of the most sought-after treatments for chronic pain and for regulating issues relating to:

  • Digestion
  • Hormones
  • Breathing
  • Muscles
  • Nerves & Brain
  • Sex & Libido
  • Body Circulation
  • Organs & Heart

In fact, acupuncture has been studied and practiced for over 2,500 years and, more recently, has been researched and supported by many scientific studies. While acupuncture may not be a "miracle" treatment for every type of pain or condition, it has been shown to be effective in treating a wide range of issues, from depression and allergies to morning sickness and cramps.

Covering the Basics of Acupuncture in Wanamassa, NJ

Acupuncture is a therapy in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) that aims to balance the body's energy, called qi, which flows through pathways called meridians. This balance is crucial for overall wellness, as disruptions to qi can lead to health concerns. According to TCM, inserting small stainless-steel needles into specific points called acupoints along the meridians can help rebalance the flow of qi and restore overall health.

These acupoints are believed to release certain chemicals when stimulated, which can trigger an immune response and promote physiological homeostasis. Recent research suggests that this therapy may help alleviate symptoms of various health ailments.

In fact, the National Institute of Health conducted a survey on complementary health approaches, revealing that acupuncture usage in the United States has increased by 50 percent between 2002 and 2012. As of 2012, 6.4 percent of American adults have reported using acupuncture as a form of treatment.

Acupuncture Near Me Wanamassa, NJ

Is Acupuncture in Wanamassa, NJ Actually Legit?

One of the most common questions from new patients interested in acupuncture typically revolves around whether it really works or whether it's all "new age" malarky. We get it - for most folks, the thought of inserting stainless-steel needles into one's back, arms, or neck sounds loony. However, with the ever-increasing popularity of acupuncture in New Jersey and other locations, numerous studies centering on acupuncture's effectiveness have taken place.

Extensive research has been conducted on the effectiveness of acupuncture for various conditions. A February 2022 analysis published in the BMJ, which evaluated over 2,000 scientific reviews of acupuncture therapies, revealed that acupuncture's efficacy is strongest for:

  • Neck Pain
  • Back Pain
  • Post-Stroke Aphasia
  • Muscle Pain
  • Lactation Issues
  • Lower Back Pain
  • Asthma
  • Allergies
  • Vascular Dementia
  • More

Additionally, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), acupuncture is most effective for pain relief in cases of chronic conditions such as osteoarthritis, lower back pain, and tension headaches. Additionally, a review of 11 clinical trials found that acupuncture may also alleviate symptoms associated with cancer treatment, as noted by the NIH.

What Happens During an Acupuncture Session at New Jersey Sports Spine & Wellness?

When meeting with your acupuncturist for the first time, they will discuss your condition with you before conducting a physical examination to identify areas of your body that might respond to acupuncture. The needles used in acupuncture are incredibly thin, sterile, and disposable, with your acupuncturist inserting them at different depths ranging from a fraction of an inch to several inches.

Acupuncture needles are less painful than medical needles used for vaccines or blood draws. This is because acupuncture needles are thinner and solid, not hollow. During the treatment, you may experience some muscle sensations like dull aches or tingling.

Your practitioner will ask you to report any deep heaviness or numbness, which are positive signs that the treatment is working. Depending on the condition you're treating and the supplemental treatments you're undergoing, like physical therapy, acupuncture needles will remain in place for several minutes or up to 30 minutes.

Once your first acupuncture treatment is finished, it's normal to feel extra relaxed and calm. For that reason, some patients like to arrange for a ride home after their first or second session. With that said, you shouldn't experience much pain at all, and it's quite possible for you to return to work after acupuncture.

How Many Treatments Until Acupuncture Works?

This is another common question that we get at New Jersey Sports Spine & Wellness. The simple answer is, "It depends." While we understand that that's not a satisfying answer for some, it's important to understand that every patient is different. Everyone has different bodies and, by proxy, different bodily conditions and issues that need to be addressed.

During your initial consultation at our office, your licensed acupuncturist will go over your needs and goals as it relates to acupuncture therapy. Once your therapist has a good sense of the scope of your needs, they can give you a loose idea of how many sessions you'll need.

Generally speaking, most patients have appointments once a week. Others may require more or less frequent sessions. It's important to note that the full benefits of acupuncture may not be immediately evident after the first or even the second session. It's common for normal patients to undergo up to five treatments to realize the full benefits of acupuncture.

What Conditions Are Treated with Acupuncture in Wanamassa, NJ?

There's no question that acupuncture is more popular than ever as a non-invasive, non-addictive way to reclaim balance and well-being. But what types of conditions can this traditional therapy help alleviate in the modern world? Advances in acupuncture techniques and applications have resulted in some very promising benefits.

Relief from Chronic Pain

Did you know that regular acupuncture treatments can help reduce the pain associated with osteoarthritis? In May 2017, a meta-analysis was published, which studied approximately 18,000 patients with chronic pain, such as low back, neck, and shoulder pain, knee OA, and headache or migraine. The analysis found that the benefits of acupuncture therapy in reducing pain lasted for more than 12 months.

That's wonderful news for athletes and other people who push their bodies daily to accomplish goals or bring home money for rent and bills. In fact, many medical experts consider acupuncture as a viable option for managing chronic pain in conjunction with traditional methods like physical therapy and chiropractic care. The idea behind this approach is that acupuncture may trigger the body's natural healing response to alleviate pain.

When a licensed acupuncturist in New Jersey inserts an acupuncture needle, it penetrates your fascia, a connective tissue that wraps around your organs and muscles. Like a slight tickle on your arm, your body realizes that something is happening and responds by delivering lymph fluid, blood, and other important nutrients to speed up healing in affected areas like your knees, back, neck, joints, and more.

 Fertility Acupuncture Wanamassa, NJ
 Best Acupuncture Wanamassa, NJ

Migraine Headache Relief

If you're like other people who suffer from migraines, you know that once one of them hits, it can be next to impossible to function properly throughout the day. Fortunately, acupuncture in Wanamassa, NJ may be a viable solution if you have to endure migraines often.

A study conducted in 2009 by the Center for Complementary Medicine at the University of Munich analyzed 11 studies involving 2,137 patients who received acupuncture treatment for chronic tension-type headaches. The researchers concluded that acupuncture could be an effective non-pharmacological solution for frequent headaches.

The study compared the effects of acupuncture sessions with sham acupuncture and no treatment at all. Both groups that received acupuncture treatment, whether needles were placed randomly or strategically, reported a reduction in headache symptoms, while the control group reported no change. The group that received real acupuncture treatment also reported a decrease in the number of headache days and intensity of pain in a follow-up survey.

Improved Sleep

For individuals who struggle with insomnia and other sleep disturbances, acupuncture is a promising therapy. Although sedatives are commonly prescribed for insomnia, long-term use can lead to negative side effects such as dependence and excessive drowsiness.

A study conducted on 72 participants and published in Sleep Medicine in 2017 found that individuals who received acupuncture three times a week for four weeks experienced significant improvements in sleep quality and anxiety compared to those who received sham acupuncture.

Similarly, a review of 30 randomized, controlled trials found that acupuncture was more effective in improving sleep quality and daytime functioning than sham acupuncture.

 Acupuncture Clinic Wanamassa, NJ
 Facial Acupuncture Wanamassa, NJ

Better Recovery from Surgery

While many patients choose acupuncture as a way to avoid surgery altogether, those who need surgery also use it for improved recovery. Because, at the end of the day, recovering from surgery is no easy feat. Patients may experience various symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, pain around the incision, restlessness, sleep troubles, constipation, and sore throat.

According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, healthcare providers may use acupuncture as a way to alleviate some of these symptoms and help with healing. A study published in Integrative Cancer Therapies in January 2017 involving 172 participants found that patients who received acupuncture after surgery reported significant improvements in sleep, anxiety, pain, fatigue, nausea, and drowsiness.

 Acupuncture Treatment Wanamassa, NJ

The Surprising Benefits of Supplementing Physical Therapy with Acupuncture

Did you know that supplementing physical therapy with acupuncture and vice versa can have profoundly beneficial effects for patients in New Jersey and across the country? If you're like most, chances are you didn't.

The truth is that acupuncture and physical therapy have both been proven effective in reducing pain and inflammation. While many people view them as separate methods, combining the two modalities can produce a synergistic effect that enhances pain relief and delivers long-lasting benefits to patients.

Physical therapists work with patients of all ages and abilities, from children to elderly adults, to help them overcome physical limitations and improve their quality of life. At NJ Sports Spine & Wellness, our physical therapists help treat a wide range of conditions, from neck pain and spinal cord injuries to back pain and arthritis.

To effectively reduce pain and treat tissue injury, a combination of acupuncture and physical therapy can be very helpful. Acupuncture helps to reduce inflammation and release muscle tightness and trigger points, allowing the patient to better receive manual therapy or exercise-based physical therapy techniques. In doing so, acupuncture can actually create a window of time that allows your body to respond better to other treatments at New Jersey Sports Spine & Wellness, such as physical therapy and chiropractic care.

There are many benefits of combining physical therapy with acupuncture in Wanamassa, NJ, including the following:

  • Increased Range of Motion
  • More Effective Long-Term Pain Relief
  • Enhanced Tissue Repair & Healing
  • Better Response to Physical Therapy Due to Pain Reduction
  • Less of a Need for Pain Medications
  • Boosted Mood & Energy
  • Better Quality of Life Overall

You may be wondering, "Are there any studies showing these benefits?" As it turns out, there are many. One such study, published on the NIH's website, was conducted on patients suffering from frozen shoulder.

 Acupuncture Therapy Wanamassa, NJ

Patients who received acupuncture experienced a significant reduction in pain, while those who underwent physical therapy saw an improvement in range of motion. However, the best outcome was observed in patients who received a combination of both treatments, with reduced pain, increased their range of motion, and improved quality of life. This study highlights the potential benefits of using acupuncture and physical therapy as complementary treatments for frozen shoulder.

It makes sense, then, that people from all walks of life are combining acupuncture with chiropractic treatments at New Jersey Sports Spine & Wellness, including:

  • Professional Athletes
  • Football Players
  • Soccer Players
  • Baseball Players
  • Construction Workers
  • Landscapers
  • Accountants and People Working Office Jobs
  • Public Officials
  • Police Officers
  • More

Combining Acupuncture with Chiropractic Care for Pain Relief and Wellness


At New Jersey Sports Spine & Wellness, our doctors, practitioners, occupational therapists, and physical therapist specialize in a range of therapies and treatments. Much like physical therapy and acupuncture, combining chiropractic care with acupuncture therapy gives patients a new way to reclaim their mobility, reduce chronic pain, and maintain a healthy quality of life.

Chiropractic care and acupuncture in Wanamassa, NJ are natural healing practices that don't rely on drugs to improve the body's health. They focus on correcting imbalances in the body's structural and supportive systems, promoting natural healing, and ultimately leading to better health. These practices have a proven track record of helping patients improve their quality of life and overcome physical difficulties.

 Medical Acupuncture Wanamassa, NJ

What are the Benefits of Using Acupuncture with Chiropractic Care?

Integrating chiropractic and acupuncture as a dual-modality treatment offers the most efficient solution for removing blockages from the body, promoting balance, and accelerating healing. Rather than using these treatments sequentially, a combined approach allows for maximum benefits at one time.

Chiropractic targets subluxations in the nervous system through manual adjustments, facilitating the central nervous system to promote healing, while acupuncture removes blockages that may hinder the body's internal balance. Together, these treatments work synergistically to optimize energy flow and restore harmony in the body.

 Cosmetic Acupuncture Wanamassa, NJ
 Cosmetic Acupuncture Wanamassa, NJ

What Conditions Can Be Treated with Acupuncture and Chiropractic Care?

When our physical well-being becomes imbalanced, and our innate healing mechanisms are compromised, illnesses can manifest. The integration of acupuncture and chiropractic practices can effectively address a wide range of health conditions that they individually target, such as:

  • Sports Injuries
  • Headaches
  • Sciatica
  • Lower Back Pain
  • Neck Pain
  • Insomnia
  • Chronic Conditions Like Diabetes
  • More

Curious if combining chiropractic care or physical therapy with acupuncture is right for your body? The best way to find out is to make an appointment at our sports rehab clinic in New Jersey. Once our team of medical professionals has a chance to evaluate your conditions, we can explore the best options to provide the most relief in the shortest amount of time possible.

The Premier Choice for Professional Acupuncture in Wanamassa, NJ

New Jersey Sports Spine & Wellness consists of a team of athletic trainers, chiropractors, occupational therapists, physical therapists, and other professionals. We're very proud and passionate about caring for our patients, many of whom are suffering from debilitating conditions like back and neck pain, plantar fasciitis, sports-related injuries, and more. If you're trying to get on the road to pain relief and recovery, acupuncture may be the non-surgical solution you need to reclaim your life. Contact our office today to learn whether this exciting treatment is right for you.


Latest News in Wanamassa, NJ

Seed to Sprout Bakery in Ocean Township has closed


OCEAN TOWNSHIP - In the nearly 10 years since Cara Pescatore and Alex Mazzucca opened their restaurant Seed to Sprout in Avon, they have elevated plant-based dining in Monmouth County.

A Fair Haven location followed in 2015, then two years later, a bakery in Ocean Township.

But the two announced Thursday via social media that the bake shop has closed.

"We’ve fought tooth and nail to keep our little bakery going, but the time has come to close our doors," they shared on Instagram. "We are working really hard to bring the baked goods we have worked years to develop to our restaurant locations, and want nothing more than to keep bringing you all of the goodness! We have to take a pause on a few things while we figure this all out."

"To all of our amazing customers, thank you so much for the years of support, it has meant the world to us to add a little more sweetness to your lives," Pescatore and Mazzucca shared. "Stay tuned for what’s in store, we have no doubt it will be better than ever!"

The restaurants remain open — though the Fair Haven location currently is closed on weekends. Their Seed Apothecary, adjacent to the Avon restaurant, is also open.

More about them:At Seed to Sprout, healthy is delicious

In 2017, the women were finalists in the Asbury Park Press' Small Innovator of the Year awards.

Also closing:Barnegat's Big Barlow's BBQ & Catering to close this week

Neither Mazzucca nor Pescatore have formal culinary training; both went to school to study nutrition. Both became vegetarians when they were younger, and with a shared love of cooking, they experimented with fresh and flavorful ingredients in ways that fit with their lifestyle.

They opened their first restaurant, the Avon location, after looking for a prep space for food they sold wholesale.

More:Pancho Mexican Kitchen brings a new flavor, fresh ingredients to Little Silver

More:5 core Jersey Shore beers you need to drink before summer ends

"People started popping in and saying 'please have food, please have sandwiches,'" Mazzucca told The Asbury Park Press in 2016. "We started with collard wraps and burritos, then we started adding salads. Then we were a restaurant.

"People think (vegan food) is so boring," she said. "We just try to take really simple ingredients and make them really delicious."

Sarah Griesemer joined the USA TODAY NETWORK New Jersey in 2003 and has been writing all things food since 2014. Send restaurant tips to sgriesemer@gannettnj.com.

NJ history: These Jersey Shore 'towns' aren't really towns at all. Here's how they came to be

Ocean Grove seems to be quite the bucolic town with its quaint Main Avenue and balmy boardwalk.Except, it's not. Ocean Grove — as town-like as it may seem — is but a small subset of the larger Neptune.Don't snicker, Lincroft. Similarly, you are a part of Middletown, right alongside Leonardo, Navesink and some 27 other localities — unincorporated areas that may have a name, but aren't their own towns.Want to test your knowledge? Take the quiz in the video at the top of the page to see if y...

Ocean Grove seems to be quite the bucolic town with its quaint Main Avenue and balmy boardwalk.

Except, it's not. Ocean Grove — as town-like as it may seem — is but a small subset of the larger Neptune.

Don't snicker, Lincroft. Similarly, you are a part of Middletown, right alongside Leonardo, Navesink and some 27 other localities — unincorporated areas that may have a name, but aren't their own towns.

Want to test your knowledge? Take the quiz in the video at the top of the page to see if you can tell a real New Jersey town from those that just appear to be.

New Jersey has plenty of incorporated municipalities — 565, to be exact. And quite a few have multiple names, in some cases dozens, for various sections of their communities. In fact, there are more than 3,300 unofficial place names that the state of New Jersey lists on a website to sort it all out.

These are some of the "towns" at the Jersey Shore that just aren't and how they came to be.

Shark River Hills (Neptune)

Like Ocean Grove, Shark River Hills is also a subset of Neptune that can feel a bit cut off from the rest of the township. The neighborhood is bordered on three sides by the Shark River and is cut off from the rest of the township by Route 18. Add to it the fact that you enter Shark River Hills either through Neptune City or Wall.

Shark River Hills is actually a newer name for the community, formed when the Shark River Hills company purchased 728 acres to develop in 1913, according to a history of the area by Peggy Goodrich.

The area was known in the 17th century as Nolletquesset and was an area where Lenni Lenape and Delaware tribes fished, clammed and gathered oysters in the summers.

It was named Hogs Pond in 1781 for the hog farming that took place on the banks of the Shark River. In 1800, Monmouth County Freeholders bought land here for a County Poor Farm.

Wanamassa (Ocean Township, Monmouth County)

The history behind Wanamassa is a little messy to pin down. One version notes that an early landowner Gawen Drummond purchased 500 acres that now makeup Wanamassa, additional parts of Ocean Township and neighboring towns from three Native American chiefs, one of which was named Wanamassa.

The supposed price? One gun, five matchcoats, one kettle and two pound weight of powder, according to one undated news article describing a centuries-old deed found in an Asbury Park home.

But some Monmouth County historians urge caution with that story. While the details were revealed on a deed, some landowners weren't exactly scrupulous in their interactions with local Native Americans, who may not have known they were signing off on a land sale.

More:NJ Lottery: winning Cash 5 ticket sold at Ocean Township liquor store

Morganville (Marlboro)

Morganville as well as other unincorporated communities like Robertsville and Hulsetown, were all stops for travelers as they made their way along what is now Route 79, according to Marlboro Township: A Rich History. A Bright Future," a commemorative history book the township published in 1999 to coincide with its 150th anniversary.

All of these little communities had inns, where travelers would stay overnight. Those innkeepers are how the communities got their names. Jonathan Morgan ran the inn in what's now considered Morganville. Innkeepers Matthew Roberts and John Hulse are the namesakes of Robertsville and Hulsetown.

All of those places that are really just Middletown

Middletown was formed in 1693 as one of the three original townships that made up Monmouth County. Of course, centuries ago, residents couldn't quite zip across town like they could today.

Communities formed within the township, often anchored around churches and post offices, some of which still exist today. As many as 30 of these place names are still going strong in Middletown.

But even over time, the names of these places have changed. Lincroft, one of the place names frequently touted, was once known as Leedsville, named after William Leeds, the man who settled the area near Brookdale Community College in the 1720s.

Leedsville was the prominent name of this area until around 1900 when Lincroft became the favored community name. Likewise, the now-posh area of Navesink was once called Riceville.

More:Middletown's One River Centre could get facelift if town OKs it

Brick Town (Brick)

Brick Town — or Bricktown, depending on who you talk to — was never actually a place. Rather it was a misnomer created by the U.S. Postal Service, Brick Township historian Gene Donatiello said.

The postal service consolidated all of Brick's post offices in 1959 and called the new overarching district "Brick Town."

When the new post office was built in the 1970s, local historians went to the postal service asking the name to be switched back simply to Brick, which has been the township's official name since it incorporated in 1850, Donatiello said.

That effort was not successful until then Congressman Edwin B. Forsythe intervened and the post office area name was changed to Brick.

Yet some people still refer to the township as "Brick Town."

Forked River (Lacey)

Forked River is a nice way to tell if you're a native from the area or not since locals pronounce the town name as FOR-kid River.

But Forked River, technically, isn't a town. As a place name, however, it actually precedes Lacey, dating back to a time when Forked River was a community in Monmouth County, before land was split off to form Ocean County.

Lacey Township was incorporated in 1871 and named for Continental Army General John Lacey.

More:Do you know your Jersey Shore towns? Take this quiz

Whiting (Manchester)

Whiting, a section of Manchester, was formed in 1861, about four years before Manchester became the seventh municipality of Ocean County.

It was named for Nathan C. Whiting, who was originally from New Haven, Connecticut and built a sawmill here, according to a history compiled by Manchester for its 150th anniversary.

Waretown (Ocean Township, Ocean County)

Waretown was settled by Abraham Waier somewhere around 1739, according to Ocean Township history. Waier built a mill here in the community, which went by various names including Waier Creek, Waier Mills and Wiretown, Waretown and Weartown.

At the time, Waretown was part of Dover Township and later Union Township, said Adele Shaw, president of the Waretown Historical Society. Waretown eventually partnered with Brookville to form what is now Ocean Township in 1876.

Some people question Ocean Township's name when it sits on the mainland on Barnegat Bay, not the Atlantic Ocean. Shaw says the name is an homage to Ocean Township's maritime heritage.

The vast majority of its residents worked in the coasting trade, shipping goods to ports up and down the coast. The residents would leave through the inlet directly across Barnegat Bay from Ocean Township.

Manahawkin (Stafford)

The origin of the name Manahawkin is somewhat murky, but its status as a town is not: It's part of Stafford Township.

Manahawkin is a Lenape word that means either "Land of Good Corn" or "fertile land sloping into the water," according to Stafford Township website. It also could have gotten its name from the Hawkins family or the honking from geese migrating through town.

Meanwhile, the community's official name, Stafford Township, has a much more clear history to it. According to the township website, Stafford is named after Staffordshire in England. It incorporated in 1749 after splintering from what was at the time an expansive Shrewsbury Township in Monmouth County.

Check back for more of the local news you crave at APP.com, covering your Jersey Shore town and the surrounding area.

Get to know the APP.com team, send a news tip, learn about our events and more at connect.app.com. Susanne Cervenka: @scervenka; 732-643-4229; scervenka@gannettnj.com

How much snow has fallen across Monmouth, Ocean counties?

MOUNT HOLLY - Thursday's snowstorm hammered parts of New Jersey, impacting residents across Monmouth and northern Ocean counties with heavy snowfall approaching 10 inches, according to preliminary reports from the National Weather Service.Thursday's nor'easter slightly shifted overnight and is expected to be a longer lasting snowstorm then forecasters previously predicted. Monmouth and parts of northern Ocean counties received a significant amount of snow within just hours as the storm blew through Thursday morning and ...

MOUNT HOLLY - Thursday's snowstorm hammered parts of New Jersey, impacting residents across Monmouth and northern Ocean counties with heavy snowfall approaching 10 inches, according to preliminary reports from the National Weather Service.

Thursday's nor'easter slightly shifted overnight and is expected to be a longer lasting snowstorm then forecasters previously predicted. Monmouth and parts of northern Ocean counties received a significant amount of snow within just hours as the storm blew through Thursday morning and early afternoon.

NJ weather: 1 to 3 more inches of snow Friday morning, rain will develop this afternoon as storm exits

A second low pressure system will approach the state on Friday, although much weaker, it's expected to bring another burst of snow and sleet to most of many areas across Monmouth County before tapering off to scattered showers by the evening hours, the National Weather Service said.

Ocean County is expected to receive less than an inch of snow to accumulate on Friday and will see more of a wintry mix of light snow, sleet, freezing rain and rain in the morning and through the afternoon hours, forecaster said.

The story continues below the gallery

The initial forecast projected Monmouth County to receive anywhere from 3 to 6 inches of snow on Thursday and an additional 1 to 2 inches on Friday. However, public reports sent in to the National Weather Service showed widespread amounts of between 6 and 10 inches in western Monmouth.

Mixing with sleet and freezing rain kept amounts lower in Ocean County, but the storm still left an icy mess on the roads and up to 4 inches in northern areas.

School closings: Schools go virtual, delay opening ahead of winter snow storm

Here are the current snow totals across the Shore, according to the National Weather Service:

Monmouth County:

Ocean County:

Check back later for further snow totals across the Shore.

Joshua Chung is the 9-5 breaking news and weather reporter. A lifelong Jersey Shore resident, he is a recent graduate of Michigan State University. Contact him at jchung@gannettnj.com, 917-703-9373 or on Twitter @Joshchunggg

Seed to Sprout Bakery in Wanamassa

A little over a year ago, Alex Mazzucca and Cara Pescatore of Seed to Sprout, a vegan eatery located in Avon since 2012 and Fair Haven since 2015, found themselves struggling to frost a wedding cake in the back of their tiny restaurant kitchen. They’d recently started advertising their custom cakes more heavily and custom orders were pouring in. They quickly realized there was no way they were going to be able to keep up with the cakes if they only had two small kitchens that also needed to produce food for their restaurants and cateri...

A little over a year ago, Alex Mazzucca and Cara Pescatore of Seed to Sprout, a vegan eatery located in Avon since 2012 and Fair Haven since 2015, found themselves struggling to frost a wedding cake in the back of their tiny restaurant kitchen. They’d recently started advertising their custom cakes more heavily and custom orders were pouring in. They quickly realized there was no way they were going to be able to keep up with the cakes if they only had two small kitchens that also needed to produce food for their restaurants and catering orders. They needed a dedicated space to create their pastries and sweets that are nourishing but still delicious–a bakery, like they’d dreamed about since the early days of their business.

In March, their dream came true as they held the grand opening for the Seed to Sprout Bakery, located on Wickapecko Drive in Wanamassa, a quiet section of Ocean Township close to Route 35 and Asbury Park. It’s a beautiful, light-filled space, even when I visit on a rainy April morning. Custom designed wallpaper covers half of the space: giant, Instagram-worthy blooms. The decor is simple but not at all boring, kind of like the food produced here.

Some people may be skeptical that baked goods produced without eggs or milk can still be satisfy a sweet tooth. Until they reached young adulthood, Alex and Cara would have been skeptical, too. Both women grew up in large Italian families. They tell me how much they loved cheese, how back then they never imagined giving it up. Both women were vegetarians before committing to being vegan, and after becoming vegan, it still took them a while to figure out how to commit to the kind of diet they wanted. They both studied nutrition as well as they educated themselves and learned a lot through trial and error.

Alex and Cara were childhood acquaintances from the same town. They reconnected when a mutual friend noticed their shared passions and thought they should get together. Since then, they’ve been inseparable—as friends and as business partners.

Vegan or not, there is something for everyone at the new bakery. Seed to Sprout Bakery offers indulgent cookies, cinnamon rolls, and other snacks, like toasts with avocado or carrot lox. They also serve a variety of coffee, hot chocolate, and tea. As I’m photographing the space, some customers come in. One of the men says, “You should put ‘Coffee and Bakery’ on the sign,” and goes on to rave about how much he likes their coffee. And, of course, they do custom cakes for weddings and parties. “These are the healthiest cakes you can probably get,” Cara tells me—but it’s still a cake. They laugh as they recall how many customers are suspicious of their baked sweets, calling to place orders and asking if the cake would taste good.

There’s a stigma surrounding vegan cuisine, even as it’s become more popular and common. (And no, food made without any animal products does not “taste like cardboard.”) Alex and Cara are passionate and picky about the food that comes out of their kitchens. They want to challenge preconceived notions and spread the message that nourishing food doesn’t have to compromise when it comes to taste. Their new bakery is proof of this.

Seed to Sprout Bakery 1405 Wickapecko Drive Wanamassa 732-361-3636

John Bosmans is ready to take over Wanamassa School

By Walter J. O’Neill, Jr.Township of Ocean – Starting any new job, whether it’s an internal promotion or moving onto a new opportunity, can cause someone to feel anxious. It’s even more nerve-wracking when you’re taking over for someone who was very popular and liked. However, John Bosmans is doing just that, taking over the principal’s position at Wanamassa School with the retirement of Vic Milano. “I am excited and ready to get this school year underway,&rdq...

By Walter J. O’Neill, Jr.

Township of Ocean – Starting any new job, whether it’s an internal promotion or moving onto a new opportunity, can cause someone to feel anxious. It’s even more nerve-wracking when you’re taking over for someone who was very popular and liked. However, John Bosmans is doing just that, taking over the principal’s position at Wanamassa School with the retirement of Vic Milano. “I am excited and ready to get this school year underway,” said Bosmans. He knew Milano and how well liked he was. “I’m not Vic, and I know that I have big shoes to fill, but I know my personality and leadership style will have a positive effect on our students and staff.”

“I felt John had the enthusiasm and heart to create the best possible environment for the children of Ocean,” said Kelly Weldon, Superintendent of Schools. She added that Bosmans is very good coming into a new position and developing a strategic plan. “One of John’s previous positions was our district’s bilingual supervisor, and he showed how well he connected with our families.”

Bosmans is no stranger to the township school system. He grew up in Ocean and was a scholar athlete who graduated in 2002. He then attended Monmouth University where he obtained a Bachelor of Arts in History/Education. He furthered his education at Thomas Edison State University and received a Master of Arts in Educational Leadership.

In 2007 Bosmans returned home to the Township of Ocean where he was hired as a social studies teacher. “I became an educator because of the great experiences I had as a student in the township, and I wanted to give back to our community to ensure every student has the opportunity to have the best education possible.”

When he was asked to look back on his 16 years as an educator and what memories stood out, he paused. “Too many to name. However, most recently being able to award the New Jersey Seal of Biliteracy to all graduating seniors who have achieved proficiency in both English and a foreign language. It was a tremendous achievement for the students and their families,” Bosmans said .

He spent 10 years as a classroom teacher and coach before he took on the role and duties as a supervisor. “I wanted to get into administration to have an impact on a larger scale. I felt that I had a lot to give to students in the district at all levels, and I sought the opportunity to further my education and career,” he said.

Weldon, who has championed the phrase “Spartan Legacy” feels that her strength is getting everyone to operate as a team. “When everyone works together, it’s more enjoyable, and that’s something I hope becomes part of my legacy,” she said.

“My Spartan legacy will be leaving the Township of Ocean Schools/Wanamassa a better place for students than before I arrived. It isn’t about me, it’s about the community and working together to put students first in order to help them achieve their goals and dreams,” said Bosmans.

When asked what advice he has for his staff as he takes the reigns as principal for the first time, he has a clear message. “Never forget what it was like to be a student and try to tune out the outside noise as much as possible. Place your energy and focus on what is most important, putting students first,” Bosmans said. He added that regardless of a staff member’s role, custodian, bus driver, instructional aide, nurse, playground aid, cafeteria worker, or substitute, they are all key personnel that will impact the daily life of the students.

“My advice for students come every day ready to learn and try new things. Your teachers and families are here to help and support you. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes, and be the best version of yourself every single day,” added Bosmans.

Some fun facts about Principal Bosmans; he loves pizza. His favorite movie was Ghostbusters and he likes all sports, but football is on top of the list. Of course his favorite colors are red and blue. In his free time, he loves to spend it with his wife Amanda and their two sons. You can also find him in the summer on the beach between 8th Avenue Jetty in Loch Arbour and the L jetty in Allenhurst.


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