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.

Busy night at Council as new police officer sworn in, residents honored

It was a night for ceremonies at the Fanwood borough council meeting Monday night, April 20. A new police officer was sworn in and two residents were honored for their long-time service.

Kathleen Case, left, gets her new Fanwood Police Department badge pinned on by her husband, Hans, after being sworn in as Fanwood's newest police officer. Looking on is Fanwood Police Chief Richard Trigo. Case comes to the Fanwood department after nine years with the Rutgers Police Department in Newark. She is the first woman to serve with the Fanwood department. Her husband is a member of the Green Brook Police Department.

Earl Phillips of Fanwood gets a key to the city from Fanwood Mayor Colleen Mahr during ceremonies at the borough council meeting. Phillips, 93, a lifelong resident of the borough, will serve as the grand marshal of the Scotch Plains-Fanwood Memorial Day parade next month. Phillips is a World War Navy II veteran and served 35 years with the Fanwood Police Department after returning to Fanwood after the war, retiring as a sergeant in 1981. Philips, a founding member of the Fanwood Rescue Squad, is still active in the community and has served on the borough's Shade Tree Commission since 1981.

Former Fanwood Fire Department Chief Russell Hamill, right, gets congratulations from current chief John Picolla after being recognized as the borough's volunteer of the month by the Fanwood council and Mayor Mahr, center. Hamill was given a framed drawing of the borough's historic north side train station. Hamill has served for 41 years on the all-volunteer Fanwood department.

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.

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

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

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.

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