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Woodbury Voice!

Woodbury Voice!

By Jared Hunter
Tons of people in Woodbury have amazing ideas, thoughts, events, programs, etc. to promote and there should be as many outlets to share those across the city as possible. A city like ours is so strong because we don’t shy away from discussing with one another the things that matter most in our lives and that’s exactly what this podcast will highlight.
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El Manantial!
This may be the most excited I’ve ever been about a guest! I sat down with Yasmin Velazquez, owner of El Manantial Restaurant - the premier and authentic Mexican restaurant & grocery store right downtown at the old Nut Shop store (17 S. Broad Street) We're right in the middle of Hispanic Heritage Month – celebrated between September 15th and October 15th – and I want to make sure that our Hispanic & Latino communities in Woodbury know que este podcast celebra la inmensa diversidad y es lo que nos hace tan especiales como ciudad. Si este es el primer episodio que está escuchando, agradezco profundamente su apoyo y sé que cuando digo que la voz de Woodbury es importante, eso significa todas nuestras voces. Enjoy listening! ¡Espero que disfrutes!
September 29, 2021
Eight & Sand!
Hope you're all enjoying your summer and gearing up for fall right around the corner! I'm so excited about this long-awaited episode with Chris Mazzone, co-founder of Eight & Sand brewery right on N. Evergreen Ave. Chris and I chatted about all things beer, history, and Woodbury so be sure your volume is up and your listening well because the information and history we share on this episode will easily make a fan-favorite for sure! As Chris would say, quick & safe travels!
August 22, 2021
Woodbury Heart & Soul!
So very excited to be kicking off season 3 in a super special way. As most folks not, but if you didn’t know, I’ve been the Program Director for a local community development program in the City called Woodbury Heart & Soul. I’d been kicking around the idea for almost a year about how to discuss our work on this podcast and I think we’ve finally found the perfect way to do it. I asked a few folks from our leadership team to join me in a chat about the program AND about our newly approved logo which we’re unveiling today along with this podcast episode. And as an extra treat, we’ve made this the first episode where I am actually a guest and none other than my wonderful girlfriend Ashley is steering the ship!  We hope you enjoy listening!
April 26, 2021
Make it Happen, Make an Impact! - Police Chief Tom Ryan
Grateful to be closing out Season 2 with a very special guest - Chief of the Woodbury Police Department, Tom Ryan!  We started Season 2 with Terry Collins to discuss the Black Lives Matter movement and the historic rally that took place in the City last June. To wrap up the season Chief Ryan and I chat about the work under his leadership this last six years to improve the Department, and how he hopes to connect more with the community no matter the circumstances.  It's opportunities like this, and many others, that make Woodbury such a special place - hope you enjoy listening!
March 09, 2021
Big Mom's! w/ PTAH Initiative
Excited to kick off 2021 with an amazing nonprofit here in the City – the PTAH Initiative. PTAH stands for Professional Trainers Advancing Humanity, and they provide professional services, programs, and initiatives to Woodbury youth to support their mental, physical, emotional, and social health. They’ve got a great storefront at 232 S. Broad right next to the police station and I encourage anyone looking for a great community space to learn, grow, and connect as community to stop by. Coach Ptah and Danielle are looking to make their place in the community like a Big Mom’s house and I know we all need that more than ever. Enjoy listening
January 22, 2021
Hispanic Family Center!
I got to sit down with Kyle Batie, site coordinator for the HFC Woodbury location on Delaware Street, to chat quickly about some of the most important aspect of HFC’s work. The services HFC provides are open to the entire Woodbury and regional community, and Kyle has a great vision for expanding the Center further out into the community. So keep your eyes peeled for new great stuff on the horizon coming from the Hispanic Center in 2021! You can find more information about the Woodbury HFC on their Facebook page at
December 29, 2020
The Cultural Collective!
Excited to share this next episode to spotlight a new business with a familiar address – The Cultural Collective. Sadia and Anitra are business partners who will be re-opening the building that once house the MADE. Artisan Marketplace at 65 N. Broad Street downtown. I sat down with both of these wonderful entrepreneurs to talk about their venture into a new collaborative business model focused on emphasizing Black owned business and work.  I hope you enjoy listening!
September 28, 2020
Johnson Manor of Faith & Education!
So excited to share this conversation I had with an amazing Woodbury leader and friend of mine, Dr. Melinda Johnson! Dr. Johnson is long-time Woodbury resident with incredible knowledge about and excitement to transform our communities for the better. She’s been doing this through joining various committees like Heart & Soul and the Neighborhood Preservation Program, she was recently elected to the Woodbury school board, and even more recently she started the journey of establishing a nonprofit organization – the Johnson Manor of Faith and Education. This conversation was so deep and passionate, it’s going to one that I certainly listen to at least once a week for some inspiration and excitement moving into the fall.
September 04, 2020
Celebrating Families Day!
This is a very special and exciting episode of Woodbury Voice! because I got to do some live recording at Wing Dickerson for Celebrating Families Day on Saturday, August 15th. This was an event hosted by Success 1st and the 21st Century Learning Center to uplift our City’s families as they prepare to start the school year once again and to bring our communities just a little bit closer in a time where we really need some unity and support. I got to sit down with some of the all-time greatest guests this podcast will ever hear from: our City’s youth! So many families came out to attend the event so I naturally had to hear from the biggest and brightest minds of the generation and I hope that you enjoy listening to them actively engaging with their community. I’ll be jumping in and out of this episode with a few interludes so I truly hope that you enjoy listening!
August 19, 2020
Tiki Tiki!
I’m so excited that I got the chance to sit down with my very good friend Ryan Morrison, owner and operator of Tiki Tiki board games. Tiki Tiki is slowly becoming a Woodbury staple and community gathering place with a unique twist on nostalgia and nerdom – it’s truly a place anyone can enjoy. And I hope you that you enjoy listening!
July 20, 2020
Woodbury Public Library!
I got to sit down with Michelle Yeager, the Director of the Woodbury Public Library, alongside Leah Klem and Kaylyn Roger who respectively the outgoing and incoming chairs for the Friends of the Public Library. This was such an important conversation to have as we start to see restrictions being lifted for public spaces, like libraries, and how folks like Michelle, Leah, and Kaylyn have been moving their work forward despite these difficult times. *Disclaimer: I was not recording at my usual site, so the audio is not up to my standards at all, but it’s what we’ve got and I hope you enjoy listening regardless!
June 29, 2020
21st Century Learning!
I’m really excited to be rolling along into season two with my next guest – Angela Rogers. Angela is in charge of the 21st Century Community Learning Center, which is a really great program that has been running in our city’s school system for nearly five years now! The program focuses on building up and edifying Woodbury youth through activities and initiatives that support development of real-life skills and career training. There’s also a huge focus on making sure that families are incorporated into these activities and this program as a whole to ensure that our youth are growing up and developing into strong and responsible citizens right along the folks that invest so much into them. Enjoy listening!
June 11, 2020
Black Lives Matter!
We're officially kicking off Season 2 of the podcast after a LONG hiatus! I sat down with local resident and organizer Terry Collins to talk about the upcoming rally this Saturday (June 6th) as a response to the public execution of George Floyd in Minneapolis last week. The rally will start at Wing-Dickerson Park on Carpenter Street at 1:00 pm. There will be a march from the park to the Superior Court Complex on Hunter Street.  I hope to see you there! #BlackLivesMatter
June 04, 2020
MADE. Artisan Marketplace!
So excited to sit down with my friend and the owner of MADE. Artisan Marketplace - Jamilah Damiani. MADE is located at 65 N. Broad Street downtown in Woodbury and is the newest jewel in the city's crown when it comes to seeing what real development centered around people and the arts can do for our community.  Be sure to follow them on Instagram (@made_artisan_mktplc) and on Facebook (MADE. Artisan Marketplace) to stay up to date on all of their wonderful events, programs, and offerings!
January 24, 2020
The Four Foot Ladder!
I got to sit down with my very own mother for today’s episode to speak about an enormously important discussion: addiction. Full disclosure, my mother suffered from an opioid addiction for well over a decade while I was growing up and for better or worse it shaped me into the man I am today. Knowing how extremely prevalent this issue is in many lives across the country, and given the focus of 2020 being aimed “impact,” I felt that it was rightly timed to be a little more open and honest in our conversations with this podcast.  It’ll be the same theme you see running throughout future episodes and our Instagram (@woodburyvoice) so please be sure to follow along as we focus our year on impacting our communities and moving the city forward together with one voice. Enjoy!
January 15, 2020
Election Season!
I’ve been doing my best to get some election coverage done with not too much success, but excited that I was able to highlight the only contested election in the city this season. Got the chance to sit down with Kevin Furlong, a Republican running for the open Council seat in the Third Ward. We had a great discussion about his hopes and vision for the city - and of course I had to bring in some community development talk before we finished up. Election Day is next Tuesday, November 5th - polls are open from 6:00 am to 8:00 pm and here is a link if you need to look up your polling location: Make your voice heard and do it loudly!
October 30, 2019
Big Kids at Heart!
I got to sit down with Dr. Stanley El this afternoon, and he brought some incredible insight to how we as a city, especially the adults, can collectively engage and develop Woodbury’s youth with more intention and more passion and with better outcomes for our community as whole. I really want people to glean from this episode a few things. #1 – As Dr. El would state firmly, the youth in this city (who compromise almost A THIRD of Woodbury’s population) are the wealth of our future and the way we move forward #2 – The youth are not the burden bearers alone of the weight of today’s problems and it’s just as much up to the adults and current leaders of our city to make strides in achieving new benefits for Woodbury as it is for the youth to carry on that legacy And #3 – we can all make a difference and it’s of the utmost importance for us to remember this as we carry on throughout lives because something simple that we say or do can have a lasting effect on generations to come. I hope that this episode enlightens you on how to do your part, share your gift, and not just uplift the city’s youth as the leaders of tomorrow because we’re here now and we’re ready and willing to make a difference now. Enjoy listening!
October 15, 2019
On the Record!
I got to sit down with Tim Zatzariny this week from On the Record – a vintage record shop in the heart of downtown at the historic and ever famous Polsky’s cornerstore. Tim and I chatted about his experiences as both a local business owner and a resident of the city and what that means when the two overlap.     Please make sure that you check out Tim’s shop “On the Record” at the corner of Broad Street and Barber Ave – you can’t miss the bright neon pink Polsky’s sign just above the entrance. That store is a testament to placemaking and the benefits of mixing old and historic with modern and inviting - do yourself a favor and get down there ASAP! Also please also make sure you follow along with the podcast! You can do so on Instagram @woodburyvoice and sharing with your friends. If you’re interested in helping out with future episodes or would like to be a guest later on, feel free to reach out at
August 24, 2019
Dirt & Dreams!
Sitting down with the director of the Woodbury Community Garden, Amelie Harris-McGeehan, was one of my summer highlights! Not only does Amelie bring years of experience and expertise about gardening to this conversation, she also hit me with some amazing historical photos of Woodbury from almost 100 years ago where the garden currently sits! I hope you enjoy this discussion about the power of pushing toward your dreams, taking care of environment, and learning some interesting facts about our city along the way. If you'd like more information about the garden, visit or search their Facebook page ("Woodbury Community Garden") and also follow us on our Instagram @woodburyvoice. Enjoy!  P.S. Here is a link to the book Amelie mentions early on in the episode ("City Green" by DyAnne DiSalvo) that was one of the inspiring factors to creating the Woodbury Community Garden: 
August 02, 2019
Community Development!
Hey guys! I decided to drop this week's episode a day early because I'll be out of town for the weekend, but I was honored to have a great discussion about community development in the city with one of its resident experts - Councilman Ted Johnson. Ted and I have been extremely close since I first moved to Woodbury and started getting involved in local politics almost ten years ago. We graduated high school a year apart, earned our masters degrees from the same Rutgers-Camden program and now we're classmates pursuing the same PhD in public affairs. Ted's brought a lot of youth and intrigue to local government over the last few years and discusses Millennial representation as key to a bright future in our public lives.  Please make sure you follow along with all of our content on Instagram @woodburyvoice and keep listening every week for new episodes. If you'd like to contribute to the podcast as a guest, co-host, or just for more information about what's going on in the city please reach out to Have a great weekend - talk soon!
July 25, 2019
FAF Coalition & Lot 323!
Coming all the way from Minneapolis to Woodbury, Tara Moughan wanted to get involved in her new “hometown”. Pairing a love for the arts, cause marketing experience and relentless stamina... The FAF was born. In its 7-year existence, The FAF Coalition has become a driving force for creative placemaking in Woodbury and in Southern New Jersey, including  innovative programs such as Rock the Woo, LOT 323 & GATHER.  Tara is one of the original founders of “The FAF” and a founding board member of The FAF Coalition. Sitting down with the mastermind behind this incredible community-building project right in downtown Woodbury was such a pleasure. FAF Instagram: @woodburyfaf FAF website: Lot 323: GATHER: About 15 minutes into the discussion Tara started discussing specific resources for placemaking and community development education. For information on the ones we mentioned in this episode feel free to search some of the following organizations: South Jersey Cultural Alliance, ArtsTank, and the National Consortium for Creative Placemaking. If you know of other resources to share, please send them along to us at
July 19, 2019
Music Education!
I had the privilege earlier this week to sit down with three incredible musicians - Savannah, Jason, and Sarah - that are all local Woodbury assets about music, music education, and education in general. We touched on a lot of insightful topics about music, its influence in our everyday lives, and how we can use it to create a stronger sense of community each and every day right here in Woodbury! Savanah and Sarah also have all of their music for your enjoyment to listen to here:   🎵    🎵    Super exciting to hear that Woodbury's high school choir also has an Instagram page you can follow @woodbury_choirs AND enjoy their original music (by students and teachers) at 🎶    *P.S. Sarah will be hosting an album release event this Sunday, July 14th at MADE. Artisan Marketplace (65 N. Broad Street) and Woodbury Voice! will be there for some fun live coverage 😉 More info about that event: 🎵 
July 12, 2019
Introduction to Woodbury Voice!
So excited to jumpstart this podcast and share with you all! In this quick 5-minute intro we'll discuss the layout for the podcast right now and what we hope to achieve.
July 01, 2019