For years, we’ve known Jon Bon Jovi as one of the many musical mougs from New Jersey who made it big. While you might assume he’s busy in the studio working on songs for his newest record (which you’d assume correctly…the rockers next CD will be hitting shelves in 2013 followed by a world tour), what you may not have known is that he and his wife, Dorothea Bongiovi, have been active in the community the rocker grew up in trying to make a difference for those less fortunate. The pair are at it again and have just unveiled their latest project to try and give back.
The Soul Kitchen is the new gourmet restaurant the couple have opened. However, it’s not like any celebrity gourmet restaurant you’ve ever heard of, this is one everyone can afford. Their “pay-what-you-can” menu offers some of the finest gourmet quality meals to those who can’t afford to eat out. Paying customers are asked to leave what they can in the envelopes left on the tables while those who can’t pay money are simply asked to pitch in.
“With the economic downturn, one of the things I noticed was that disposable income was one of the first things that went,” Jon explains. “Dining out, the family going to a restaurant, mom not having to cook, dad not having to clean up – a lot of memories were made around restaurant tables.”
“When I learned that one in six people in this country goes to bed hungry, I thought this was the next phase of the Foundation’s work.” he added.
The Foundation Jon is talking about is the Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation. Other projects they’ve completed through the help of their namesake is building 260 houses for low income families, charity concerts, a local food pantry they began helping in several years ago, and their soup kitchen, Lunch Break, which feeds over 100 people per day, the one that started it all.
Now, after a year and $250,000, The Soul Kitchen is open to those who still want to enjoy fine quality dining at a price they can afford while giving back to the community.
“This is not a soup kitchen,” Bon Jovi makes clear. “You can come here with the dignities of linens and silver, and you’re served a healthy, nutritious meal. This is not burgers and fries.”
The restaurant offers a menu rich in gourmet soul food you’d find in any of the areas most famous eateries. Cornmeal crusted catfish with red beans and rice, grilled chicken breast with homemade basil mayo and rice pilaf and grilled salmon with soul seasonings, sweet potato mash and sauteed greens. Not only do the options sound mouth watering, many of the ingredients were grown in the herb and vegetable garden right outside the doors of the establishment.
“There are no prices on the menu, so if you want to come and you want to make a difference, leave a $20 in the envelope on the table. If you can’t afford to eat, you can bus tables, you can wait tables, you can work in the kitchen as a dishwasher or a sous chef,” he says. “If you say to me, ‘I’m not a people person,’ I say, ‘That’s not a problem. We’ll take you back to Lunch Break to volunteer with those people. If you don’t want to volunteer with that, we’ll take you to the Food Bank.”
“If you come in and say ‘I’m hungry,’ we’ll feed you,” he says. “But we’re going to need you to do something. It’s very important to what we’re trying to achieve.”
Once you’ve volunteered at these places, you’ll earn a food certificate good at The Soul Kitchen for your meal. This idea is all part of a bigger plan for the Foundation to help bring back some community and help people who are struggling know that there are people out there who care about them while giving a little back in return.
“This is not an entitlement thing,” the rocker adds. “This is about empowering people because you have to earn that gift certificate.”
Bon Jovi urges those who can afford to dine out to patron The Soul Kitchen to help make this a true community resource. They are open for dinner near the Red Bank train station in central New Jersey Thursday through Saturday and also offer Sunday Brunch. He and his wife have been staying active in the restaurant and the New Jersey moug we all know and love has been working there at least once per week to pitch in. While you might think he’s busy creating delicious dishes to don the menu with his decades of experience dining in the worlds best restaurants, you might be surprised.
“Last Friday, I was at the White House, serving on the Council for Community Solutions, got on a train, changed in the bathroom and got here in time to to wash dishes Friday night,” he said. “I’m the dishwasher, for real. I can’t cook a lick.”
We have to say, this is by far one of the coolest things we’ve heard of recently. We wish Jon and Dorothea and the rest of The Jon Bon Jovi Soul Foundation much success.
So what do you think about this Celebstalkers? Isn’t is great to see celebrities giving back to the community?
Okay, so we usually don’t do special posts just because it’s a celebrity’s birthday, but as the leading site in all thing mougars, we have to send a shout out to the original moug himself, Sir Sean Connery!
This Scottish sexpot has been driving ladies mad since the 1950’s and even though he turns 80 today(Shocking! Positively shocking!), he is still ranks #1 on most everyone’s moug-o-meter!
So, what does Mr. Connery have planned for his birthday celebration? He will be spending it in the Bahamas with his wife, Micheline and 15 of his closest loved ones.
From his seductive Scottish accent to his gorgeous looks and his sexy roles over the years, Sir Sean Connery has shaken and stirred a number of ladies of every age. But don’t let him fool you! This hot piece of moug is more than just a pretty face! Did you know that after appearing in the movie Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves that Sean donated his entire paycheck (almost $2 mil) to charity?! Not to mention, he served in the Royal Navy…you know, Sean, we love a moug in uniform!
So, in honor of your birthday, we salute you, Sean Connery, you mougalicious son of a bitch! Happy Birthday from your friends here at Celebstalk!
Alright Celebstalkers, tell us what your favorite Sean Connery film is!
Edward Cullen, Robert Pattinson, RPattz and KStew Dating Rumors “confirmed”, Eclipse and Breaking Dawn…all in one sexy post!!
With The Twilight Saga: Eclipse just hitting theaters and filming Water for Elephants, Robert Pattinson has been one very busy boy! And with June coming to a close, we are sad to see our June Moug of the Month, Edward Cullen, go with it, so without further adieu, we give you the post of all posts!!
We were there Tuesday at midnight with thousands of others waiting to see all the bloodsucking action unfold at the Eclipse premiere and let us tell you…it was the best one so far!! David Slade did not disappoint us as we watched our favorite vamps and werewolves duke it out for Bella Swan. We won’t tell you too much just in case you just happen to be the one person who didn’t read the books or see Eclipse yet…but we will say that the latest installment of the franchise will not let you down! The only things you will be left wondering is why hasn’t David Slade been the director for ALL of the films??
Okay, so whether you are Team Edward, Team Jacob or Team Newt, GO SEE ECLIPSE!
As we said, RPattz has been very busy. He just finished Bel Ami, Eclipse was just released yesterday, breaking records all over the place and he is currently filming Water for Elephants with Reese Witherspoon. Ugh! Makes us tired just thinking about all that work! But Rob never forgets the fans and he took some time out to discuss his thoughts on the casting for the next film in the Twilight Saga, Breaking Dawn, with E!
E! thinks that Bill Condon should cast former Golden Girl Betty White in the film (pause for WTF?! moment) and asked the British star his thoughts on the idea.
“Definitely,” he says. “She can be the baby.” Of course, the baby he is referring to is Renesmee.
Rob wasn’t the only cast member to get on board with this idea.
“Oh, my gosh,” Kellan Lutz, who plays Emmett Cullen, said. “I love Betty. I would love for them to do what they did in Benjamin Button with her and she can be Renesmee. I would change some scenes up so we could have Jacob (played by Taylor Lautner) and Emmett going for her. I want to work with her. That would be so much fun.”
Elizabeth Reaser (Esme Cullen) agrees with Kellan and Rob. “Is there a part for her?” she asks. “I’d love for her to be in Breaking Dawn. We could all learn a lot from her.”
Julia Jones (Leah Clearwater) suggests that Betty play Bella’s “great great grandmother in a flashback.”
Stephenie Meyer, the author of the novels the films have been made off of immediately saw White as a vampire. “We have so many vampires in Breaking Dawn, surely she can fit in somewhere,” Meyer says. “Wouldn’t it be amazing if she was like just sitting there with a big group of the Vultori? That would be amazing.”
Peter Facinelli (Carlisle Cullen) has bigger plans for legend Betty White, saying “I think Betty White should be in…everything!” he said. “I’d put her in Breaking Dawn and then I’d like to see Betty White do an action movie in 3-D. She should be in the next Avatar.”
Yikes! Well, you never know, right?
And last, but certainly not least, the RPattz/KStew rumors… Ah, the rumors. They have been flying all over the place for the past 2 years, driving all the fans crazy with suspense and suspicion. Well, although there still has been no confirmation from Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart, the evidence just keeps piling up for these two. We have followed the pair all the way to Budapest and back and now, producer of the Twilight Saga: Eclipse movie, Wyck Godfrey, confirms the romance, saying that he hopes they can manage to keep their relationship afloat for the sake of the final two films.
The producer says, “The thing I do think about is, ‘Oh my God, I hope they stay together.’ Because it could be awkward on set in the next movie if they have a huge falling out. It’s like ‘Wow, they have to portray this love story through two more movies. God, I hope they stay together; please stay together.’ That’s what affects my day-to-day.
“If you look at people who have a stable personal life, the rags (tabloids) get tired of them. I think we’re heading to that place, where they are together and that’s their life and we better find someone new to create drama out of.”
Don’t be so sure, Wyck. It looks like the fandemonium is starting up again with the newest movie and won’t be stopping anytime soon. At least not until the hype from the last movie dies down.
So as much as we hate to, it is time to say farewell to our June Mougar of the month, Edward Cullen, for now. If you can’t take the torture, then check out Twilight Saga: Eclipse, in theaters nationwide now!
Tell us what YOU think, Celebstalkers!! Did you love the newest Twilight movie? Do you think Betty White is right for Breaking Dawn? Which part? And do you think that Rob and Kristen really are dating? Or just messing with people?