2016 Engage Toms River Great Arts Challenge – Theme is “Remembering our Veterans”


Once again the Jay and Linda Grunin Foundation are challenging the creatives in our community!

The Jay and Linda Grunin Foundation [JLGF] will hold a juried contest in five categories for visual and performing arts:

  • music,
  • poetry,
  • sculpture,
  • painting and
  • photography.

What makes this contest unique?  The theme will be revealed on June 17th and the work must be completed within three days. This challenge is open to all artists living in Ocean County, NJ, who are 18 or older.  Intention to compete form must be completed and submitted by midnight, June 15th.

Your correspondence must state what form of art you intend to produce.  You may choose ONLY one of the five categories listed (music, poetry, sculpture, painting, or photography).

The challenge of course, will be to create your work in three (3) days.   The work that is created must fit the theme.  The theme will be announced at 8:00am on June 17th and the work must be completed by NOON, June 20th.

Judges will select their top three works of art in all five categories.  The shortlist will be announced on WOBM’s Shawn and Sue on June 23rd, where online voting from the community will begin.  Online voting ends midnight, June 30th.

One winner per category will be awarded $1,500 from the Jay and Linda Grunin Foundation.  The winner with the most popular votes will an additional $2,500.

All entries (not just winners) will be displayed on the www.jayandlindagruninfoundation.org/engagetomsriver website. Each entry becomes part of the public, historical online contest catalog and will not be removed at a later date.


  1. Music– (original, no covers):

*any instrument- as an instrumental (individual or group)

*cantata (vocals with accompaniment)

*a Capella (vocals alone)

Time perimeters:  One and a half minutes to three and a half minutes (1.5 to 3.5 minutes)

  1. Poetry. Written or spoken.  Written: Hand written, typed, etc.  Spoken: uploaded to: kelly@jayandlindagruninfoundation.org Again, perimeters for length in number of words or time to recite should be 500 words, 5 minutes maximum.
  2. Sculpture. This may include wall hung sculpture as long as it remains 3 dimensional. The sculpture may be in any medium. i.e.: clay, plastic, recycled materials, mixed media, etc.  Note, the artist is responsible for transportation and installation.  Perimeters for size: 12 inch height x 4″ x 4″ minimum, 63 inch height x 36″ x 36″ maximum.  
  3. Painting.  This includes all paint mediums. i.e.: watercolor, oil, acrylic, etc. Perimeters for size: 9 x 12 minimum, 36 x 48 maximum.
  4. Photography.  This includes manipulated Photography 9 x 12 minimum, 36 x 48 maximum. Photography must be printed, not framed.


  • The art must reflect the theme.
  • There is no restriction on subject matter, just keep it G rated please. No inappropriate language, no nudity or objectionable content.
  • Artists may submit singularly or as a team, but at least one person must be a resident in Ocean County, NJ.
  • Must adhere to the timeline.  Any work begun before noon on June 17th, will be disqualified.   The work, finished or unfinished must be delivered by email or to the TR Branch of the OC Library by noon, June 20th, 2016.
  • All work must be original.  If your work infringes upon another’s copyright, your submission will be disqualified.  Upon submitting your work to this competition, you are solely responsible for any infringement on copyrighted materials.
  • Artists are expected to execute the art at a location that is convenient for them but must be able to deliver the work on time. Late work will not be accepted. Your original work must be started and completed in the designated time span (June 17, noon through June 20 – Delivered by noon).


Media event for announcing the theme will be on WOBM’s Shawn and Sue at 8:00am.

  • All artists must deliver their finished or unfinished work to: OC Library (Bishop Building) 101 Washington St, Toms River, NJ, June 20th, by 12pm.


  • The artist is not only responsible for the delivery but also the installation of the art (where this applies).  The artist must make their own provisions for the transportation and installation of their art work. This includes removal from the library.


  • By entering this art competition, you are granting JLGF a non-exclusive perpetual license to reproduce images or recordings of your artwork in all marketing efforts, including those of Toms River and Ocean County.


  • The winning artist/s must agree to exhibit their work (including recordings of music and poetry) at OC Library, 101 Washington St, Toms River, NJ, From June 20th through Aug 15th.  


  • The work must not contain advertising and it shall not identify the name of any business.



The competition is open to artists aged 18 or older, who are residents of Ocean County, NJ. In the case of teams, at least one team member must be a resident in Ocean County.



Midnight, June 15, 2016 Intent to Compete must be submitted.
June 17, 8:00am Theme will be announced on WOBM’s Shawn and Sue, by email, and it will be posted to the JLGF website www.engagetomsriver.com
June 20, Noon All work must be delivered by email or brought physically to the library.  101 Washington St, Toms River, NJ. 08753
June 20-June 23 Panel of Judges decide shortlist.
June 23 Shortlist announced on Shawn and Sue, and on engagetomsriver.com
July 1 Winners announced at Mancini Hall reception.  If you are not on the shortlist, you must pick up your art work after the reception.
June 20 -Aug 15 Exhibiting at the OC Library, 101 Washington St, Toms River, NJ. 08753
Aug 16 Winning art must be picked up from OC Library. Exact time frame TBD.



The artists will retain all rights to the idea, music, art and design.  The JLGF reserves the right to display, photograph, or otherwise record all submitted materials. The Downtown Toms River Business Improvement District and Ocean County reserve the right to use the submissions or a photographic image to fundraise, advertise and/or use for marketing materials.  They also have a right to use any videos or recordings made during the entire process.


All art submitted and delivered on time, will be exhibited from June 20th to Aug 15th, in the atrium of the OC Library in Downtown Toms River, 101 Washington St, Toms River, NJ  08753.   


The Prize/s

The selected winners/or team from each category will be awarded $1,500, with one artist earning the Grand Prize, a total of $4,000.00!


The Deadline

The deadline to submit your Intent to Compete: June 15, 2016, Midnight.

Deadline for submission of actual work, June 20th, 12pm.

Intent to Compete must include:

  1. Intent to Compete form submitted/ emailed by midnight June 15th.
  2. If submitting as a team, name and address of the Point Person or Leader. This person is responsible for fair distribution of award if successful. (name, address, phone #,  and email address )
  3. Medium declared.  (Photography, painting…etc.)
  4. Confirmation that at least one artist is a resident of Ocean County.  Proof may be submitted by sending ONE of the following:
    • copy of your driver’s license
    • copy of a recent utility bill, etc
  5. By submitting and signing the Intent to Compete, you are agreeing to deliver, install at the beginning of the exhibit, and to remove your work at the end of the exhibit.  You are also agreeing to be present for the announcement July 1. 

Selection Jury

There will be a prestigious panel of judges, which will be finalized soon.  Check back for more information.


Notification of Winners

The winner will be notified July 1, 2016, at a reception at Mancini Hall in the OC Library. 

Judges Criteria

Judges will be looking for:

* aesthetic and technical quality

* distinctive personal expression /uniqueness

* inventive

* how well it expresses the theme / fulfills intent

Checklist for Submission:

  • Intent to Compete: Online form asking for:
    • Confirmation that at least one artist is a resident in Ocean County.  Proof can be submitted by sending ONE of the following:
      1. copy of your driver’s license
      2. copy of a recent utility bill, etc.
      3. Name of the point person in case of teams / or the artist who will be on site for the duration of the project (as described above).
      4. Available June 24th, ability to transport and install art work where it applies and agree to exhibit work through August 15.  Removal and transportation of work, Aug 16, 2 – 4pm.
      5. Present for July 1st announcement.

*Please note: Terms and Conditions may change. Artists will assume all risk. The Ocean County Library, Jay and Linda Grunin Foundation and judges are not responsible for any potential damage to the submitted work.

Who We Are

The Jay and Linda Grunin Foundation

The Jay and Linda Grunin Foundation is a private family philanthropic fund based in Toms River, NJ.  Our aim is to make Toms River the regional template for quality of life and strong economic health through root-cause focused investment in health care, education and the arts.

We are a proactive grant maker. This means we will identify and invest in organizations which will help the foundation attain its various programmatic goals.

Our aim is to collaborate with and invest in innovative projects that can have measurable impact and can create meaningful, transformative change.   To find out more visit  http://www.jayandlindagruninfoundation.org