Check out Fanwood's holiday happenings

Fanwood's holiday happenings are rich in tradition and include opportunities to help others, a borough-wide party, visits from Santa, a concert featuring an 80-voice choir, Christmas tree sales, luminaries to dress up your walkways, and more. Click here or the holiday button in the left-hand column to see a full listing of what's going on around the borough for the holidays.

'Giving Tree' to be unveiled Monday by Fanwood Police, PBA Local 123

For the fourth year, the Fanwood Police Dept. and PBA Local 123 are coordinating a holiday gift donation for the Parents as Teachers program in Union County. A giving tree with ornaments for each child is outside Borough Hall. The tree will be unveiled Monday at 5 p.m. Take an ornament any time after that and return the unwrapped gift (with the tag attached) by Dec. 12 to the Police Dept.

The Parents as Teachers home visitation program provides a wide variety of services to 60 families in Union County. It aims to improve pregnancy outcomes and child health and development, increased parent involvement in children's care and education and prevention of child abuse and neglect.

'Shop Local,' Shop Fanwood for all of your holiday needs

The Fanwood Business and Professional Association (FBPA) is kicking off its "Shop Local" campaign. It's in concert with the national effort to encourage shoppers to support their local businesses over the holidays and throughout the year. Statistics show shopping local is good for the local economy, and for several years American Express has promoted "Small Business Saturday" on Thanksgiving weekend. It has been catching on, and this year, the big day is Saturday, Nov. 29

"Our local businesses aren't just businesses," said FBPA incoming president Brian Walter, "they are our neighbors, who work hard every day to keep our town unique and special. Please join us in supporting them and celebrating their hard work!"


"Most businesses in Fanwood support the community with cash and service donations for our Performance Series, Fanny Wood Day, National Night Out, Movies in the Park and more," said Fanwood Mayor Colleen Mahr. "These are the things that make Fanwood a great place to live and we owe our support to these fine merchants, many of whom live in town."


Click here for more on the story.

Raiders soccer boys lose 1-0 in state final matchup Sunday

The Scotch Plains Fanwood High School boys soccer team ended a terrific season with a heartbreaking 1-0 loss to top-ranked Washington Township in the group IV state final match Sunday at Kean University. The loss ended a magical run for the Raiders - they came into the final as one of the hottest teams in the state, winning 14 straight games, 11 of them by shutout, and a tournament streak where they hadn’t allowed a single goal. But, the Raiders couldn't find the net Sunday and Washington made an early goal stand. It was the 13th time the Raiders had played in the title match.

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Council honors Rosahl for book sale volunteer work

Fanwood Council member Kathy Mitchell, left, and Parthena Rosahl, Fanwood's Volunteer of the Month for November, share a laugh as Mitchell presents Rosahl a framed print of the borough's historic north side train station. Rosahl was honored at the council meeting in Fanwood Monday night, Nov. 17. She organized the Fanwood Memorial Library book sale for the seventh time in September. The 28th annual sale netted the Friends of the Library more than $10,000, a record amount. The money from the sale will fund programs and new equipment for the library.

Mayor Mahr reviews this year's One-Seat Ride progress

Fanwood Mayor Colleen Mahr and other members of the Raritan Valley Rail Coalition (RVRC) reviewed the progress of the one-seat ride initiative Monday at the group's last meeting of the year, according to a story on

Mahr credited the group with keeping the pressure on New Jersey Transit (NJT), resulting in the midday one-seat ride program getting started last March and the recent announcement by NJT of the upcoming expansion of evening one-seat service.

"It really became evident to Transit that we weren't going away, they had to listen to us, and that was when they came out with that announcement," Mahr said during the nonprofit group's monthly meeting, held Monday at the Plainfield campus of Union County College.

Donate your old cell phones today!

Drop your old cell phones in the box at the Fanwood Police Dept. and help the Union County YWCA. For each phone, the YWCA will receive money from the Shelter Alliance. Keep the phones out of the landfill and help a good cause!

Economic Development Corp. offering low-interest business loans

In the wake of SuperStorm Sandy, the Union County Economic Development Corp. reminds small business owners that they are offering low-interest loans of up to $25,000 at 2% for five years for qualifying businesses, as part of the Storm Recovery Loan Program.


Qualified applicants will have been profitable and in business for at least one year prior to the storm. The loans can be used as general working capital, to retire more expensive debt, purchase equipment or renovate or expand. Click here for more information or call (908) 527-1166.

Temple Sholom holding interfaith Thanksgiving service Nov. 24

Temple Shalom is holding a community interfaith Thanksgiving service on Monday, Nov. 24, at 7 p.m. All are welcome to take part in the service at the new temple, 1925 Lake Avenue in Scotch Plains.


The interfaith service is sponsored by the Scotch Plains-Fanwood Ministerium, a group of local faith leaders, town mayors, the Scotch Plains-Fanwood School Superintendent and the heads of several non-profit organizations.


The service features music, readings and prayer to bring the community together in the spirit of Thanksgiving. A highlight of the event is the musical program presented by the combined choir. Cantor Axelrod will lead singers from Congregation Beth Israel, Temple Sholom, Willow Grove Presbyterian Church, Fanwood Presbyterian Church, First United Methodist Church, St. Bartholomew the Apostle and Scotch Plains Baptist Church in a series of meaningful melodies.


For additional information, call Temple Sholom at (908) 889-4900.

Mayors, school board president speak to statewide meeting

Fanwood Mayor Colleen Mahr, left, Scotch Plains/Fanwood School Board President Trip Whitehouse, center and Scotch Plains Mayor Kevin Glover pose for a photo at the New Jersey League of Municipalities Convention in Atlantic City this past week. The trio made a presentation Tuesday afternoon to the convention on "School/Municipal Cooperation."


"Sharing our best practices is one of the most valuable things that happens here at this convention," Mahr said. "I am delighted to have been asked to share our successes."

Tickets on sale now for Handel's Messiah concert Dec. 7

The music ministry of Fanwood Presbyterian Church presents its annual performance of Handel’s Messiah, the Christmas portion, Sunday, Dec. 7, at 4:00 p.m.

Under the direction of Tom Berdos, Director of Music Ministries at the church, professional opera soloists soprano Jamie Baer Peterson, mezzo Hanne Ladefoged-Dollase, tenor Brian Ernstes, and bass Ivan Conrad will perform. The 70-plus voice chorus will be accompanied by a full professional orchestra.

Tickets for this performance of the Messiah are $20.00. Call (908) 889-8891 for more information. To order tickets, send a check payable to Fanwood Presbyterian Church, memo Messiah, with a stamped self-addressed envelope to P.O. Box 69 Fanwood, NJ 07023.

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