An Intern's Voice: The Drumthwacket Foundation Gala

When I started interning at National Research, Adam and I went over a schedule of a few different events that he and I would be attending over the course of my internship. One of these events that I was especially looking forward to was a fundraiser at Drumthwacket, the Governor’s Mansion of New Jersey.

I had never been to Drumthwacket prior to this event so it was something that I was especially looking forward to. I was first impressed as Adam and I pulled onto the grounds and I saw the beautiful 19th century house.  Before proceeding to the event in the back yard of the mansion, we were guided through the interior of the house in a short but sweet tour. Here, we were able to see how well preserved the house was and all of the traditional décor that gave the mansion the charm that it is famous for. 

On the grounds in the back of the property was where the event was being held. Underneath a very large tent there were several small cooking stations. Each station was being operated by a chef from different restaurants spanning all across the State of New Jersey. Each station was preparing the signature dish from the restaurant they were representing. This was great because I got to try great food from several different restaurants all in one place. I really loved a dish that was prepared by a restaurant called Eno Terra in Kingston, New Jersey. This restaurant specialized in a Fluke sashimi that I very much enjoyed, and I found myself returning to their station several times that night. I even talked to the chef about how he prepared it so I could try to recreate it myself.

After I had made my rounds through the different stations, everyone attending the event began to settle in as the time for the Governor to speak was coming up. When Governor Chris Christie got on stage, he started by thanking everyone for coming out, and he even recognized Adam which I really got a kick out of. 

Most of his time spent speaking however was to remind everyone about the reason for the night’s event, which was to raise money for the Drumthwacket Foundation. While Drumthwacket is considered the official residence of the Governor, the Christie family does not reside there. Instead, the house is a public landmark, preserved for its historical significance.

The property that Drumthwacket stands on was owned by the Olden family for several hundred years prior to it becoming the Governor’s mansion. This piece of property is situated very closely to the grounds where the famous Battle of Princeton took place during the Revolutionary War. In 1835 a house was built on the property by Charles Smith Olden who became the 28th Governor of New Jersey. After the house and property had changed hands a few times, it was finally bought by the State of New Jersey in 1966 and was designated as the Governor’s mansion in 1982.

The fundraiser that Adam and I attended will have a benefit on the preservation of the house and the grounds, but I think it will have the greatest benefit on children who are currently in school. In New Jersey, every fourth grader takes a class where he or she will learn about our state from many different angles. One experience that fundraisers like this allow are field trips to the Drumthwacket mansion, where fourth graders are given a tour of the house and learn of its historical significance.  This is a great experience that will give hundreds of children an opportunity to develop a deeper appreciation for the state they live in.

For me, attending this event was a great experience where I was able to visit a national historic land mark, meet several prominent political figures, get to see a great speech given by the Governor, and even try some great new foods. Events such as this provide a great atmosphere for those in attendance and have lasting effects on the people they benefit. 

To learn more about Brian Fox, click here.