Fanwood celebrates the earth, April 24-25

Fanwood celebrates the earth this coming week with two annual spring events, Arbor Day and the Community Cleanup to mark Earth Day.

The Fanwood Shade Tree Commission will celebrate Arbor Day  in Carriage House Park on Watson Road, Friday, April 24, at 4 p.m..


The next day, the borough will mark Earth Day with activities for residents of all ages.


Volunteers should meet at the south side train station at 8:30 a.m. to help, including spring cleanup at the nature center and picking up trash and litter along the streets and railroad tracks. For additional information regarding this event, please call the Dept. of Public Works, (908) 322-7404.

Fanwood first responders honored with K of C Shield Awards

Award winner Sgt. Marc Gottlick, Police Chief Richard Trigo, award winner Off. Ryan Gilmore, Squad president Steve Siegal, award winner Elizabeth Buckridee, Capt. Patti Buckridee, award winner Ken Gorman and asst. chief Dave Zawodniak of the Fire Dept.
Award winner Sgt. Marc Gottlick, Police Chief Richard Trigo, award winner Off. Ryan Gilmore, Squad president Steve Siegal, award winner Elizabeth Buckridee, Capt. Patti Buckridee, award winner Ken Gorman and asst. chief Dave Zawodniak of the Fire Dept.

Four Fanwood first responders were honored Thursday night, April 16, at the Scotch Plains-Fanwood Knights of Columbus Shield Awards ceremony. The 40th annual awards presentation took place at the St. Bartholomew the Apostle Church in Scotch Plains.

The Fanwood Police honorees, Sgt. Marc Gottlick and Officer Ryan Gilmore, were presented awards for their actions in delivering a baby girl for Sherry and Joseph Cole in the early morning hours of Oct. 23, 2014, at the Cole's Fanwood home. There were complications with the birth and Sgt. Gottlick, with the assistance of Off. Gilmore, delivered and stabilized the baby before the Rescue Squad arrived. It was Fanwood's first baby born in the borough since 1998.

The EMS honoree is Elizabeth Buckridee, recognized for her dedication and service to the Fanwood Rescue Squad. Buckridee has responded to more than 500 calls in her time with the squad. Both her mother, Patti, the squad's captain, and her sister, Karolyn, also serve on the squad.

The Fanwood Fire Dept. honoree is firefighter Ken Gorman, who was recognized for his dedication to training not only himself but also helping younger members of the department prepare for firefighting.

Fanwood's Phillips named Memorial Day parade grand marshal

Fanwood's Earl Phillips, 93, a lifelong resident of the borough, has been named the grand marshal for this year's Memorial Day parade.


Philips, a World War II Navy veteran in the European theater and 35-year member of the Fanwood Police Department, will lead the parade on Monday, May 25.


Philips joined the Navy in 1942 and served as a quartermaster on the USS Thomas Jefferson, an attack transport, involved in the invasions of French Morocco, Sicily and Salerno. Philips also served on a seagoing tug assigned to aid Naval vessels involved in the invasion of Normandy.


He left the Navy at the end of 1945 and returned to Fanwood, where he joined the Police Department in 1946, rising to the rank of sergeant during his 35 years on the force. Philips, a founder member of the Fanwood Rescue Squad, is still active in the community and has served on the borough's Shade Tree Commission since 1981.


This year's Memorial Day weekend activities include the third annual concert on Sunday evening at the old train station grounds, a memorial ceremony at the Fanwood Library on Monday morning and the parade down Martine Avenue later that day.

Calendar note: Fanwood arts & crafts festival set for May 9

Make a note on your calendar now to attend the first annual Fanwood spring art and crafts festival at the south side train station lot Saturday, May 9, the day before Mother’s Day, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The juried show will feature the work of more than 50 top artisans displaying their own work including  paintings, sculpture, metalworks, glassworks, pottery, jewelry, clothing, garden works and much more. Specialty food items will be available, too. And, there will be live music and activities for the kids.

“Fanwood’s first annual arts festival will be a great way to spend a spring day downtown with your family and friends,” said Mayor Colleen Mahr. “And, it is a perfect time to pick up a gift for your mom for Mother’s Day!"

Click here for more information.

Rescue Squad conducting free CPR classes in May; sign up now

The Fanwood Rescue Squad is offering free CPR classes to the community during National EMS Week, beginning May 16.

These classes are taught by volunteer instructors, who are donating their time and are underwritten by local merchants and businesses. Only residents of Fanwood or Scotch Plains are eligible. Here's the class schedule: Saturday, May 16, 8:30 a.m.; Monday, May 18, 7 p.m.; and Wednesday, May 20, 7 p.m.

Register here: Registration is first come, first served. Sign up and help save a life.

Super heroes breakfast fundraiser planned April 19 at F-SP YMCA

Andy Calamaras, President of the Frazee organization, and Kim Decker CEO of the YMCA.
Andy Calamaras, President of the Frazee organization, and Kim Decker CEO of the YMCA.

A super hero breakfast to benefit the Fanwood-Scotch Plains YMCA and the Rotary's Frazee House project is set for Sunday, April 19, from  9-11 a.m., at the YMCA on Martine Avenue.

Enjoy a great breakfast fun activities, a raffle and more. Kids should come dressed as your favorite super hero and pose for photos. Bring your camera!

Tickets are $20 for adults and $15 for children, 12 and under. Space is limited, so call the YMCA at (908) 889-8880 or stop by the Member Service Desk at the YMCA.

Click here for more information.

Rehearsals continue for choir festival at Fanwood Presbyterian

Tom Berdos, music director of the Fanwood Presbyterian Church, conducts a rehearsal of the multi-community choir that will be performing at the 4th Annual Choir Festival at the church Sunday, May 17, at 7 p.m. The concert is a benefit for the Fanwood and Scotch Plains Rescue Squads. The whole community is invited to pay tribute to our volunteers and hear a spectacular concert.

Recycling events, mold workshops planned in coming weeks

Several recycling events and mold workshops are being held in the coming weeks in the Fanwood area.


A document-shredding event is planned for Saturday, April 18, from 9 a.m. to noon, at the Chelsea on South Avenue. There is a limit of ten boxes per person and shredded items must be 100% recyclable. For more information, call the Chelsea at (908) 654-5200.

Scrap metal recycling for residents will also be held on April 18, in Westfield at the Conservation Center, 1300 Lamberts Mill Road, from 9 a.m. to 12 noon. Residents can drop off old appliances, microwaves, air conditioners, and metal lawn furniture to name a few.


For more information about future events or directions please call the Recycling Hotline at (908) 654-9889 or visit us online at


The county is also holding mold workshops. At the workshops, attendees will learn how to identify and safely remove mold from their homes and businesses. The presenter will be an experienced health and safety trainer from the New Jersey Work Environment Council and the International Chemical Workers Council for Health.


The nearest workshops are:

Family Success Center, 209 Berckman Street, Plainfield, April 18, 10 a.m. - noon;

Froehlich Building, 300 North Avenue East, Westfield, May 20, 6-8 p.m.; Community Center, 220 Walnut Avenue, Cranford, June 6, 10 a.m. – noon


Pre-registration is preferred, although walk-ins will be accepted. To register, contact Andrea Navas, Public Health Planner, at the Union County Office of Health Management at (908)518-5630 or

Poetry Series marks 'National Poetry Month' April 21 at Kuran Center


The Carriage House Poetry Series in Fanwood will celebrate National Poetry Month with readings by two distinguished poets on Tuesday, April 21.

The free poetry performances by Catherine “Cat” Doty and Douglas Goetsch will begin 8 p.m. in the Patricia Kuran Arts Center on Watson Road, off North Martine Avenue, adjacent to Fanwood Borough Hall (GPS use 75 N. Martine Avenue). An open mic reading with local poets will follow the featured performance.

The Carriage House Poetry Series is currently in its seventeenth year at the Kuran Arts Center, an historic Gothic Revival structure that was once a 19th century carriage house, hence the name of the series.

For more information call (908) 889-7223 or (908) 889-5298. For online directions and information, visit

Mahr visits School One third graders, explains Mayor's job

Mayor Colleen Mahr poses with third graders from Jaclyn Duffy's class at School One earlier this month after visiting with the kids and explaining the duties and responsibilities of the Mayor's office. "We really enjoyed learning about local government and Mayor Mahr did an excellent job," Duffy reported. Mahr visits several classrooms each school year to help students understand how local government works and how they can help their towns.

Scholarship Foundations thanks residents, students for help with drive

The Scotch Plains Fanwood Scholarship Foundation, which assisted 94 students with post-high school education in 2014 with more than $150,000 in grants, is thanking local residents and the students who helped out with the group's 49th annual fund drive in March in the two towns.

Click here to see a letter from Foundation president Mary Ball Cappio.

Support 'Donate to Educate' through Fanwood's collection point

High schools and local governments throughout Union County have banded together to help students in need, by collecting and distributing donated school supplies. Fanwood Borough Hall is a designated collection point for donations. The campaign runs through April 28.

Click here for more information.


The campaign, called “Donate to Educate” – Schools Supplying Schools, was created by a group of high school students in the second annual UC STEP summit, held last year.


UC STEP (the Union County Student Training and Enrichment Program) is a daylong summit that brings high school sophomores and juniors together from all walks of life, to practice leadership skills and develop civic projects that engage the whole Union County community.


Throughout the spring, students at participating high schools will be hard at work, organizing activities to publicize "Donate to Educate," and encourage donations. The Boys and Girls Clubs of Union County are also partnering in the campaign. Along with school supplies, financial donations are part of the campaign. The students will be selling "Donate to Educate" stylus pens, ear buds, and wristbands to help raise funds to purchase school supplies.

Fanwood Library to present 'Female Spies' Sunday, April 19

Moran, left, and Ryzuk
Moran, left, and Ryzuk

The Fanwood Memorial Library is hosting a production of “Female Spies,” a tribute to brave and dedicated women, on Sunday, April 19, at 2 p.m., at the library.

The performance, written and performed by Sharon Moran and Mary Ryzuk, is a ‘living documentary’ that both entertains and educates the audience about the lives of the women who risked life and limb to help a cause in which they deeply believed.

From Anna Strong’s espionage during the Revolutionary War to Emma Edmonds' and Belle Boyd’s Civil War experiences to Julia Child, Marlene Dietrich and more from WWII and up to the present day, the adventures of these women come to life through stories, anecdotes, Power Point art and dialogue.

This program is free and is made possible by the support of the Friends of the Fanwood Memorial Library.

College Club hosting discussion of women artists April 20 at the Chelsea

The College Club of Fanwood-Scotch Plains will present Dr. Anne Swartz to discuss "A History of Women Artists: From the Medieval to the Modern Eras" on April 20 at 7:30 p.m. at the Chelsea on South Avenue. 

Dr. Swartz is a Professor of Art History at the Savannah (Ga.) College of Art and Design. She will provide a broad overview of the main figures of the Medieval, Renaissance, and Modern Eras of art, including Hildegard of Bingen, Artemisia Gentileschi, Rosa Bonheur, and Georgia O’Keeffe.

Women artists have been actively involved in making art since the Middle Ages and Dr. Swartz's talk will address why women did not have a major role in art until the modern period.

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