The Pickals Foundation was founded in 2014 in the Maplewood kitchen of Arthur Cohen after he was diagnosed with ALS or Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, a disease that “remains uniformly fatal with no meaningful treatment options,” according to Pickals.org.
Despite the devastating diagnosis, Cohen focused on the fact that researchers believe that ALS is not an incurable disease, “just an underfunded one.” He decided to take his love for pickles — he and his wife Janet had been making pickles for years from the organic Kirby cucumbers they grow — and turn it into a quest for a cure.
Nearly three years later, Cohen, Executive Director and Chief Pickling Officer of Pickals, is still pushing the pickled products of the Pickals Foundations, which now ships tasty, briny cukes from coast to coast and funds organizations working to cure ALS.
On Saturday, March 25, the Pickals team is joining forces with the Hebron family to host a sold-out fundraiser for ALS research and patient support. “Numerous people with ALS (PALS) are attending to enjoy this fun evening and help spread awareness about this dreadful and deadly disease,” Pickals President Beth Daugherty told Village Green. “A representative from ALS Therapy Development Institute, a non-profit lab dedicated to ALS research, is also coming to speak briefly about a promising therapy they have developed and the funding urgency to advance this therapy to the human clinical trial phase.”
Although the casino-themed event is sold out. you can still purchase Pickals online or pick up Pickals locally at Bagel Chateau in Maplewood, Stony’s in South Orange, Squirrel & The Bee in Short Hills, or Sobsey’s in Hoboken.
For his part, Cohen is full steam ahead and fired up about Pickals.
“I’m thrilled that the SOMA community has continued to sacrifice good breath in support of Pickals. Our dream of taking the business to the next level and supporting ALS research and patient care services is becoming a reality. We couldn’t have done this without the support of this amazing community and all our volunteers,” wrote Cohen who was “typing with his eyeballs” from a special keyboard. When we noted the rapidity of his typo-free reply, Cohen told Village Green that he is a much better typist with his eyes than he ever was with his hands.