National Night Out observance next Tuesday

The Fanwood Police Department’s 30th annual National Night Out Against Crime observance will be Tuesday, August 5, with a fun evening for families in LaGrande Park. The festivities get underway at 6 p.m.

There will be raffles for both kids and adults. And, the kids will enjoy games, a bounce house and slide, face painting and tattoos and arts and crafts. There will also be food for all. The food and activities are all free.

And, the evening will be topped off with a free showing of The LEGO Movie on Fanwood’s outdoor screen in the park. The movie starts at dusk.

The evening is locally sponsored by the Fanwood Police, Fanwood PBA Local 123, The Chippery, Oh’ Brian’s Pourhouse, K-9 Resorts, Mara’s Bakery, Be Craftful, Nick’s Pizza and the Somerset Patriots.


The Fanwood evening is part of a national observance. The introduction of National Night Out, “America’s Night Out Against Crime”, began an effort to promote involvement in crime prevention activities, police-community partnerships, neighborhood camaraderie and send a message to criminals letting them know that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back.


National Night Out now involves more than 37.8 million people and 16,124 communities from all fifty states, U.S. Territories, Canadian cities, and military bases worldwide.


Click here to go to the Fanwood Police website for more information.

Raritan Road repaving to start next week in Scotch Plains

Drivers who use Raritan Road in Scotch Plains should plan alternate routes as large sections of the major throughfare, including the major intersection of Raritan and Rahway Roads, will be closed from Monday to Wednesday next week.


Repaving will affect Raritan Road from Rahway Road to Overlook Way and no through traffic will be allowed. Some residents may have to apporach their homes from a different direction or even park their cars and walk in during the project.


Scotch Plains Police will be on hand for traffic control.

Fanwood Police: Be safe, lock your car or truck

Chief Richard Trigo and the Fanwood Police remind you to lock your vehicle, even when it is parked in your driveway.


The reminder comes after five cars were entered between 5 p.m. Saturday evening and 2 a.m. Sunday morning in the northwest section of the borough, Paterson Road and Watson Road.


All of the vehicles were unlocked and movable property was removed from the
vehicles. Residents are encouraged to lock their cars and contact the Fanwood Police Department if they should observe any suspicious behavior.

Only a few weeks left to catch a Tuesday movie in the park!

Just a few weeks to go in Fanwood Recreation's Tuesday night summer movie series in LaGrande Park. Bring the family for an enjoyable evening with your neighbors.


Movies on tap for the upcoming weeks include:

  • Tues, Aug. 5: The LEGO Movie (PG). The movie will be shown after the National Night Out observance in the park, which starts at 6 p.m.
  • Tues, Aug. 12: Ender's Game (PG-13)


The movies begin at dusk (approximately 8 p.m). Be sure to bring a blanket or a beach chair! (And, maybe some bug spray, too.) Rain date for all movies is the following evening.


Area recycling events on tap on the next two Saturdays

Union County Freeholders will be sponsoring recycling events on the next two Saturdays for hazardous waste disposal, scrap metal collection and shredding of confidential papers.


This coming Saturday, a household hazardous waste day will be held from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Union County Vo Tech School at 1776 Raritan Road in Scotch Plains. Residents can bring old pesticides/herbicides, oil, gasoline, pool chemicals and propane tanks.


County Police will also be on hand to collect ammunition and fireworks.


The same day, a scrap metal recycling event will be held at three locations in Union County for residents to drop off their metal for recycling. The closest location for Fanwood residents is the site at the Westfield Conservation Center, 1300 Lamberts Mill Road. All locations will be open from 9 a.m. to noon. Residents can drop off old appliances, microwaves, air conditioners and metal lawn furniture to name a few of the items accepted.

On Saturday, August 9, a mobile paper shredding event will be held at Kean University, 1000 Morris Avenue in Union, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The shredding will take place across from the train station near Green Lane. County residents can bring up to four bags of confidential documents for shredding.


For more information on these events, visit the Union County website.

Westfield group looking for volunteers to help others cope with grief

Imagine, a Westfield group organized to help others cope with grief, is looking for volunteer facilitators and has a training class beginning August 1.

According to Mary Robinson of the group, “Volunteers come from all walks of life and need no special background other than a willingness to listen, a heart inclined to serve, and the ability to be with children and adults in pain without trying to fix, solve or give advice. No prior experience is necessary."


Volunteers must be 21 years or older.

“When life has handed you a devastating blow, what can you do, where can you go?  You can go to Imagine.” said Beth Alvero, Imagine volunteer facilitator.

If you are interested, or have questions, you can call Imagine at 908-264-3100, reach them on email or check out their website.


Water main project continues in new locations

Weather permitting, New Jersey American Water's contractor J. Fletcher Creamer will be installing new services this week from the water main in the street to behind the curb on the customer’s side on the following streets: MacLennon Place, Laurel Place, LaGrande Avenue, Klaniecki Place, First Street and Beech Avenue

The hours of work will be from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. When tying in the new service line, water will be off for approximately 30 minutes. Lane closures are anticipated and traffic control and detours will be coordinated with local police.

These new locations are part of the ongoing project to upgrade and modernize the American Water distribution system in Fanwood.


For any questions or concerns, please contact:

Jesse Peterson, New Jersey American project inspector - (908)239-0631
Chief Richard Trigo, Fanwood Police - (908)322-5000, ext. 116

Final week for military, vets to apply for 'Hero' scholarships

If you know an active-duty military member, or a veteran, who is looking to pursue studies in a post-secondary or vocational training environment, be sure to alert them to a state initiative, the Heart of a Hero Scholarship Program.


The program helps military service members pursue a post-secondary education or vocational training by providing another resource to make their higher education and career goals a reality. This year, New Jersey Heroes is funding ten $5,000 scholarships to be awarded in time for the 2014-15 school year.


The application deadline is Friday, August 1. Heart of a Hero Scholarship recipients will be notified in late August.


For 2013 Heart of a Hero recipient Marine Corps Captain Christopher Southard of Margate, “This scholarship is a huge help as I transition from Active Duty into the Reserves and a career in law enforcement. The scholarship helped me to complete my MS Degree in Criminal Justice from the University of Cincinnati in April.”


According to U.S. Army Specialist James Raczowski, a 2013 recipient from Brigantine, “The scholarship has helped tremendously by relieving some of the debt burden incurred while attending graduate school. It has given me peace of mind and an even greater focus to complete my goals and become the best possible artist, veteran, and citizen alike.”


While studying at The New York Academy of Art, Specialist Raczowski has volunteered his time to help bring the Veterans Artist Program to the Academy for the first time. In addition, The New York Academy of Art recently awarded Specialist Raczowski a month-long summer arts residency in Moscow.


Applicants for the Heart of a Hero Scholarship must meet several program criteria: 1) be a United States citizen and New Jersey resident; 2) be a high school graduate or have a high school equivalency diploma (GED); 3) served in the military and submit documentation of military service; if discharged from the military, must show proof of honorable discharge; 4) enroll as a student at an accredited college/university or a vocational training school in pursuit of a degree for the 2014-15 school year; 5) demonstrate a commitment to volunteerism and community contribution, in the spirit of New Jersey Heroes.


Service members interested in applying for the Heart of a Hero Scholarship must fully complete the application form either online by no later than 5:00 p.m. Friday, August 1, 2014 or submit an application via US Mail postmarked no later than August 1, 2014 and mailed to NJ Heroes, P.O. Box 95, Mendham, NJ 07945-0095.


Summer storms bring reminders to be prepared

With the start of hurricane season and the recent severe thunderstorms that have hit our area, Fanwood and Union County want to help residents prepare.


The Fanwood Police have emergency information available on their website.


And, the county's home page features a new “Plan Ahead for Weather Emergencies” link. It enables handy access to guidance from the federal emergency website,, along with links to websites and social media for Union County and its 21 municipalities.


Additional guidance relating to health and safety before, during, and after a weather emergency is also available from the Centers for Disease Control at


Residents need to have a plan in case of extreme weather, including flashlights, a supply of food and water set aside, a list of medications and doctors and a battery-powered radio. If residents have pets, they need to have supplies for them, too. They should also have a location planned where families may reunite if forced to leave their homes,


As part of their emergency preparedness measures in advance of a major storm, residents and businesses are asked to check their property and secure lightweight yard furniture, trash cans, toys, and other items that could create windblown hazards.


“The most crucial thing to do is to stay informed in the lead-up to an extreme weather event, and follow the guidance of local emergency officials,” Freeholder Chairman Christopher Hudak noted. “Your preparedness will enable first responders to focus on helping those in immediate need.”


During emergencies, residents automatically receive warnings on land lines at home, through the reverse-911 system. Both the Fanwood Police and the county also have systems to enable residents to receive alerts on cell phones and other mobile devices. Go to the Fanwood Police website to enroll in the local version. Residents can join the Union County First Alert system by signing up online.

Volunteers wanted for September's Fanny Wood Day celebration

Mayor Colleen Mahr and members of the Fanny Wood Day Committee invite you to join up in supporting the annual September town-wide gathering.

The committee hopes Fanwood residents will volunteer to organize games and activities, sell ads for the program, coordinate with the promoters and just be there to take on duties as they pop up.

"Taking part in our Fanny Wood Day celebration is a great way to help the borough, meet new friends and have some fun," Mahr said. "There's plenty to be done and your help would be appreciated."

Those who are interested should email Mahr at

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