Credit: News of Salem County

A late Thanksgiving — doubled with an early Hannukah — has seemingly thrown New Jersey local media into sudden holiday overload.

Jersey Bites told us how to make a delicious gumbo with that leftover turkey (and their Hanukkah chicken recipe might also be adapted for that other, bigger bird), while Edible Jersey has the story of a Chesterfield woman who bakes nearly 7,000 cookies each holiday season as gifts.

Sites like Springfield Patch covered those iconic town menorah lightings. And Montclair Patch gave us a rundown on the mixed results of Small Business Saturday for local merchants.

The Alternative Press covers a Turkey Trot in Westfield:

Speaking of business, one New Jersey Black Friday story went national — for all the wrong reasons. As Cliffview Pilot reported, “A shopper spit on another woman’s child during an argument in the infant clothing section of the Walmart Supercenter in Garfield, igniting a chain of events that ended with police pepper-spraying a man shouting curses in the electronics department, authorities said.”

In more ugly news: News of Salem County is looking for pictures of the ugliest holiday sweaters.

Credit: News of Salem County

Credit: News of Salem County

But there are more beautiful local NJ stories as well: reports about a Verona police sergeant successfully raising funds for Boston Children’s Hospital, Edible Jersey chronicles war vets turning to horticulture for therapy, Patch details the story of a West Deptford High School grad battling malaria in Malawi, BaristaKids brings us a Glen Ridge woman who has helped found a group to curtail female genital mutilation and provide scholarships for girls in Kenya, and John T. Ward of Red Bank Green brings us a beautifully wrought follow-up story on the death — and life — of cyclist Cole Porter on Red Bank Green.

Our full roundup of this week’s best local NJ coverage:

Is Governor Christie Afraid to Come to Ocean Grove? Or are we just not important enough? Blogfinger

Everything Was Right in Cyclist’s Life Red Bank Green*
Police Sergeant’s Fundraiser for Boston Children’s Hospital Tops $21K My Verona NJ
Intelligent Transportation Is Coming to East Rutherford in Time for Super Bowl Transportation Radio

Montclair Center Merchants Report ‘Mixed Bag’ on Small Business Saturday Montclair Patch
Thousands ‘Flock’ to Westfield’s Tamaques Park for 30th Annual Turkey Trot Westfield TAP
Garfield Walmart shopper spits on other woman’s kid, man pepper-sprayed Cliffview Pilot*
Walmart shoppers arrested for theft, warrant Elizabeth Inside Out*
Turkey and Sausage Gumbo Recipe Jersey Bites*
Springfield Celebrates Hanukkah With Public Menorah Lighting Springfield Patch
Man Charged with Murder of Camden County Marine in Custody Haddon Patch
From Wawa to Malawi, West Deptford Native Making an International Difference West Deptford Patch
Battle Over Right to Maintain and Repair Network Hardware Brewing in Camden Court NJ Tech Weekly

The Cookie Queen Edible Jersey
Changing the Lives of Kenyan Girls…One Girl at a Time With Pastoralist Child Foundation BaristaKids
Swords to Plowshares: War veterans turn to horticultural therapy to help heal wounds Edible Jersey

*Asterisks are available for reposting through the NJ News Commons Story Exchange.

NJ News Commons’ intern Andrew Guadagnino, a senior Communications and Media Arts major at Montclair State University, contributed to this report.