News

Website ranks Fanwood in Top 25 of best NJ suburbs to live in

Niche.com, a website that ranks cities, towns and suburbs, is out with its 2015 rankings and Fanwood is #25 on the list of "Best Suburbs in New Jersey to Raise a Family."

 

The site takes in to consideration weighted scores in nine categories and assigns grades in seven of the nine items. Fanwood scored high rankings in education, community, housing, access to day care and access to grocery stores.

 

In the Fanwood area, Westfield was ranked #35, while Scotch Plains was ranked #126.

 

According to the Niche website, "The Best Suburbs to Raise a Family ranking provides a comprehensive assessment of key metrics that indicate how good an area is to raise a family at the suburb level. This grade takes into account key family-centered factors, such as public education, safety, community involvement, and access to family necessities.

Delayed Party in the Park draws a great crowd for fun, food, movie

Families stake out some good spots for the movie following the Party in the Park.
Families stake out some good spots for the movie following the Party in the Park.

It took an extra day to get it done, but this year's Party in the Park drew a good crowd to kick off the summer.

 

Originally planned for Tuesday night, June 23, the eighth-annual party at LaGrande Park was moved back a day because of severe weather warnings in the area.

 

The party, put on by the Fanwood Recreation Commission, preceded the first free movie night of the summer.

There was food, music, beverages and more! And, for the kids, there were rides and other amusements, including a new Laser Tag attraction. Also, contests and crafts inspired by the free movie of the evening, "How to Train Your Dragon 2."

 

Click here to see a photo gallery from the event.

Fanwood remembers, honors WWII vets and fallen heroes

Fanwood Police Officer Dan Kranz, left, and recruit Dan Piccola place a wreath during Memorial Day ceremonies at the Fanwood Memorial Library Monday.
Fanwood Police Officer Dan Kranz, left, and recruit Dan Piccola place a wreath during Memorial Day ceremonies at the Fanwood Memorial Library Monday.
The concert crowd listens as Andrew MacDonald, at lectern, an Army veteran, reads a letter written by a soldier who later died in combat.
The concert crowd listens as Andrew MacDonald, at lectern, an Army veteran, reads a letter written by a soldier who later died in combat.

Fanwood paused again this Memorial Day weekend to once again pay respects to the men and women who served, and those who gave their lives, in the U.S. armed forces throughout the nation’s history.

Sunday night's fourth annual concert, "A Tribute to Fallen Heroes," featured patriotic music of the World War II era performed by the Westfield Community Band at Fanwood’s North Side Train Station lawn. In addition to the music, local veterans read poignant letters written home by soldiers who later died in combat.

Parade grand marshal Earl Phillips, left, with Fanwood Police Chief Richard Trigo.
Parade grand marshal Earl Phillips, left, with Fanwood Police Chief Richard Trigo.

This year's theme for Memorial Day activities is the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II. The concert and other activities recognize the dedication, commitment and sacrifice of the residents of Scotch Plains and Fanwood who served in the United States Armed Forces during World War II.

Fanwood’s Earl Phillips, a World War II Navy veteran and retired Fanwood police officer, was the grand marshal of the parade, greeting well-wishers along the parade route from his convertible ride.

The annual memorial service for the fallen took place at the Fanwood Memorial Library Monday morning. A poignant moment came when Holocaust survivor Marsha Kreuzman thanked Wayne Hanlon, the son of the late Kenneth Hanlon of Fanwood, for his father's service in World War II. The elder Hanlon was part of an Army unit that liberated Kreuzman and others from a concentration camp at the end of the war.


Then, after a service in Scotch Plains, the parade stepped off from the Scotch Plains Municipal Building, making its way down Martine Avenue to Fanwood’s LaGrande Park.

 

Click here to see photo galleries from this year's Memorial Day events.

Rescue Squad's Brian Downing honored by Overlook Hospital

Each May, during the national EMS/Rescue Squad month observance, Overlook Hospital hosts a dinner where squads from across Union County are recognized for their service.

 

Each rescue squad may select a member to receive an Award of Excellence. This year, the Fanwood Rescue Squad selected EMT Brian Downing.

 

Brian, a resident of Plainfield and son of veteran squad member Jeff Downing, is consistently one of the squad's top responders, even as a full-time college student. He also responds for the Scotch Plains Rescue Squad. He is pictured with Captain Patty Buckridee, who presented him with the award at the dinner held Tuesday night, May 20, . The Fanwood and Scotch Plains Rescue Squads are both volunteer organizations which do not bill for services.

Busy night for Council as police, EMS and a volunteer are honored

Fanwood Police Sgt. Marc Gottlick, left, and Patrolman Ryan Gillmore visit with Sherry Cole and her daughter, Jamie, after ceremonies at Fanwood Council.
Fanwood Police Sgt. Marc Gottlick, left, and Patrolman Ryan Gillmore visit with Sherry Cole and her daughter, Jamie, after ceremonies at Fanwood Council.

Fanwood Police were honored, EMS Month was celebrated and a volunteer who brings music to the borough was recognized at a busy Fanwood Council meeting Monday night, May 18.

 

Five members of the police department received honors from Fanwood Police Chief Richard Trigo.

 

The honorees included Sgt. Marc Gottlick (Chief's Award, Exceptional Duty Award and Lifesaving Award), Sgt. Phillip Ugone (Chief's Award, Exceptional Duty Award), Cpl. Michael Schilling (Unit Citation, Lifesaving Award), Patrolman Ryan Gilmore (Unit Citation) and Dianne Howarth, Executive Asst. to the Chief (Chief's Award).

 

On hand for the presentation of awards to Gottlick and Gilmore were Sherry and Joe Cole of Fanwood. In the early morning hours of Oct. 23, 2014, at the Cole's Fanwood home, Gottlick and Gilmore responded to a call that Sherry Cole was giving birth. There were complications and Gottlick, with the assistance of Gilmore, delivered and stabilized the baby before the Rescue Squad arrived. It was Fanwood's first baby born in the borough since 1998.

 

EMS Month was recognized with a proclamation accepted by Squad President Steve Siegal and Squad members Bob Kruthers and Jazzmin Dixon. Siegal also received a grant from New Jersey American Water for equipment for the squad.

 

The volunteer-of-the-month award was presented to Brian Celardo, one of the founders of the Fanwood Performance Series, which presents musical entertainment several times a year in the Patricia Kuren Cultural Arts Center in Fanwood.


Click here to see a photo gallery from the evening's activities.

Fanwood celebrates the earth with two events

Mayor Mahr with poster contest winner Taylor Klein of Park Middle School.
Mayor Mahr with poster contest winner Taylor Klein of Park Middle School.

Fanwood held its annual celebration of the earth last month with Arbor Day and Earth Day activities.

 

The borough held its annual Community Clean Up day on a chilly but sunny morning Saturday, April 25.

 

Volunteers from the area gathered at the Fanwood train station bright and early to pick up gloves, trash bags and t-shirts before breaking off into teams to pick up trash around town.

 

The event was hosted by the Clean Community Committee, chaired by Greg Cummings, and the Fanwood Dept. of Public Works. Mayor Colleen Mahr and Council members Russ Huegel, Kathy Mitchell and Tom Kranz were on hand along with members of the Fanwood Environmental Commission and Nature Center.

 

New this year was an Earth Day poster contest for local school students, won by Taylor Klein, 10, a member of the Park Middle School Environmental Club. Local business sponsors included Fanwood Bagel, Nick's Pizza and Sky Yoga, which conducted a brief yoga warm-up for the volunteers.

Fanwood's Arbor Day event Friday, April 24, at Carriage House Park, sponsored by the Shade Tree Commission, featured students from the Park Middle School Environmental Club doing a presentation about the different trees that grow in the park.

 

For the 22nd year, Fanwood won designation as a Tree City USA for its conservation and care of trees.

 

Seedlings placed in separate pots were distributed to all who wanted to plant a tree, the seedlings made available through a post-Sandy recovery program. And, Ken Blom of Fanwood's Department of Public Works demonstrated tree pruning using the town's bucket truck.

 

Among those present were Mayor Colleen Mahr, Council members Kathy Mitchell and Tom Kranz, Shade Tree Commission Chairman Steve Falco and Commission members Earl Phillips, Adele Kenney and Joanne Muoio.

 

Click here for photo galleries from the Earth Day and Arbor Day events.

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, 2015, 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.

Big turnout for Easter egg hunt on sunny but chilly day

There was a little chill in the air but bright, sunny skies welcomed a good crowd to Fanwood's Forest Road Park Saturday, March 28, for the annual Easter egg hunt, terrifically organized by the Fanwood Recreation Commission.


Children 10 and under got a chance to meet the Easter bunny and and to hunt for more than 1,000 eggs, filled with all sorts of goodies including hundreds of prize tickets, that were hidden around the park.

Prizes were also given out for these contests: guessing the number of jelly beans and the number of chocolate eggs; a bunny drawing contest and an egg decorating contest.


Click here to see a photo gallery from the day's events.

Two Fanwood residents honored as 'Women of Excellence'

Boroff, left, and Nering
Boroff, left, and Nering

Two Fanwood women, Amy Boroff and Tricia Nering, were among those honored Friday evening as winners of this year's Union County Women of Excellence Awards. This is the 23rd year for the awards, which recognize the dedication and service of women to their communities.

 

Boroff, who opened Be Craftful on
Martine Avenue downtown in 2013, was recognized for entrepreneurship. Her store is a unique hub of activities for parents and children in the community. Boroff also serves on the Recreation Commission and supports several volunteer and fundraising efforts in Fanwood.

Nering, who started Heart for Humanity in 1994, was honored for her humanitarian work. For more than 20 years, she has collected money, clothing, food and personal-care items and redistributed them directly to a broad range of at-
risk single women with children, families who have lost everything in fires and floods and seniors in the area, too. With her front porch as the hub of her activities, Nering
devotes 25-30 hours-per-week year-round to helping others.

 

Click here for a photo gallery from the event.

St. Patrick's celebration fundraiser a great success

A large crowd turned out Saturday, March 7, for a great celebration with the wearin' of the green, food, drinks, live music, Irish dancers and bagpipers at the 5th annual St. Patrick's fundraiser under a heated big tent on the grounds of the north side train station in Fanwood. The event, a benefit for the SPF Music Boosters, was sponsored by Oh' Brian's Pourhouse and the Fanwood Business and Professional Association. Click here to see a photo gallery from the festival.

Fanwood goes 'Red' for women's health

Mayor Colleen Mahr and the staff of Borough Hall "Go Red" for women's health Friday. The women are, from left front, Colleen Huehn, Mahr, Pat Hoynes and Dianne Howarth. Back, from left, Lisa Halloran, Patricia Celardo,  Joy Veeck and Donna Zucker.
Mayor Colleen Mahr and the staff of Borough Hall "Go Red" for women's health Friday. The women are, from left front, Colleen Huehn, Mahr, Pat Hoynes and Dianne Howarth. Back, from left, Lisa Halloran, Patricia Celardo, Joy Veeck and Donna Zucker.

There was plenty of "Red" to go around in Fanwood Friday, Feb. 6, as the community showed its support of "Go Red" for women's health, a national event sponsored by the American Heart Association.

 

Mayor Mahr and the Borough Hall staff were in red for the day and a large crowd turned out Friday evening at the Chelsea on South Avenue for a health fair featuring a mini yoga class, blood pressure checks, healthy food cooking demos, a raffle and some healthy snacks. The event was sponsored by The Chelsea Senior Living Center and the Little Hearts, Big World Training Center of Scotch Plains.

 

As part of the annual event, Borough Hall was bathed in red light for the weekend to draw attention to the cause.

 

Click here to see a photo gallery from the day's activities.

MLK Day draws hundreds to serve the community

Mayor Colleen Mahr honors MLK Day organizers Michelle Shapiro-Abraham, Amanda Barnett and Courtney Agnello.
Mayor Colleen Mahr honors MLK Day organizers Michelle Shapiro-Abraham, Amanda Barnett and Courtney Agnello.

Hundreds of volunteers honored the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. by giving back to their communities Monday, Jan. 19, the sixth annual Martin Luther King Day of Service. The event took place in several locations in the two towns, providing a volunteer opportunity for the whole family.

 

At Wednesday night's Fanwood council meeting, the founders and organizers of the MLK Day observance in Fanwood and Scotch Plains - Michelle Shapiro-Abraham, Amanda Barnett and Courtney Agnello - were honored as the borough's volunteers of the month.

 

Click here to see a photo gallery of the day's activities.

 

Here's the day, by the numbers:

• More than 800 volunteer slots filled
• 37 activities and donation sites

• 8 Girl Scout Troops leading activities

• 20 Girl Scout Troops participating

• 766 sandwiches for Salvation Army

• 100 Color a Smile pictures to cheer people in hospitals and nursing homes

• 137 Little Shoeboxes filled

• 4,200 Sharing Lunches bags prepared

• 50 Houses for Change made to benefit the Family Promise agency

• 1.5 hours of fun bonding a room full of seniors and kids together playing games at the Chelsea

• 6 Christmas trees for sick people will be decorated with beads made by kids helping Matchy Matchy

• 160 people discussed issues of race and equality at library

• The Fanwood Nature Center was cleaned up and trails maintained

• a dozen knit hats were made

• 4 blankets for hospitals were crocheted

'Shop Local' in Fanwood for 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!"

Many folks reject the hubbub and anxiety of "big box" shopping during this busy season and the perfect antidote can be found right in your own downtown! In contrast with "Black Friday," shopping local has the advantage of pulling you away from the crowds and finding unique gift items not available at the big chain stores.

"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."

"Here in Fanwood, our retailers are selling holiday gifts including jewelry, crafts and fine handmade specialty items," Mahr said. "We also feature many services where gift cards can be purchased, a lovely bakeshop to add to your holiday table and, of course, several dining opportunities to stop for a break during the holiday or to purchase a gift card."

For a list of all Fanwood businesses, along with seasonal deals, e-mail the FBPA at info@fanwoodbusiness.com. Mahr added, "Do yourself and your community a favor. Shop local. Shop Fanwood!"

PHOTO: From left, Brian Walter, incoming FBPA president and owner of Oh'Brian's Pourhouse, Amy Bazarnik Boroff, incoming FBPA membership chairwoman and owner of Be Craftul, Mindy Scarlett, incoming FBPA secretary and owner of The Scarlett Marketing Group, and current FBPA president Jeni DiVirgilio, Realtor with Keller Williams Realty.

NJT to begin evening One-Seat Rides on Raritan Line in January

Rail advocates and New Jersey Transit officials are saying evening one-seat ride service to New York on the Raritan Valley Line will begin in January, according to nj.com. The move comes after the planned start in November was cancelled by NJT.

 

Passengers won't need to change trains in Newark on the new service, running between 8 p.m. and midnight, when traveling to and from New York.

 

More than 100 people turned out in Cranford to hear from NJT officials and Raritan Valley Rail Coalition (RVRC) members regarding changes to service on the line. Fanwood Mayor Colleen Mahr and Fanwood Councilman Jack Molenaar‎ were at the special meeting of the RVRC, which has been leading the fight to bring the one-seat ride to Raritan Valley Line commuters.

 

“It was wonderful to see so many people come out, even all the way from Hunterdon County," Mahr, a longtime advocate for direct train service on the Raritan Valley Line, told TAPIntoScotchPlainsFanwood. "There were many excellent questions and comments, all with one common theme: Raritan Valley riders want equity when it comes to service from NJT and that means scheduling ‘one seat’ ride trains during peak commuting hours.”

Fanny Wood Day draws a big crowd on a beautiful day

The weather was just about perfect and a good time was had by all Sept. 28 for the 17th annual Fanny Wood Day celebration in downtown Fanwood.


This year, the annual street fair featured a car show, kiddie rides, several food competitions, the hula-hoop contest, a water balloon toss, a pet parade and a host of other great things to do.

 

A good crowd also turned out Sept. 26 for the judging of the fourth annual Fotos of Fanwood competition at Mara's Cafe in Fanwood. This year's contest, sponsored by Unity Bank, drew 48 entries representing the work of photographers from the Fanwood area and as far away as San Francisco. First place went to Greg Cummings, while Daniel Tartamella took both second and third in the contest.

 

To see more photos, click here for a photo gallery from the weekend's events.

Party in the Park draws a record crowd

This year's Party in the Park was the place to be in Fanwood as hundreds flocked to LaGrande Park June 24 for a great evening of food, fun, games and Frozen, the movie. The crowd was the largest to attend the annual event.

 

The hot dogs, pizza slices and other snacks were in popular demand and there was no shortage of cold drinks, either. Families staked out their favorite spots with blankets and lawn chairs for the evening's movie while the kids enjoyed the bounce house, inflatable slide and craft activities.

 

It was a great kickoff to the summer movie season. To see more photos, click here to check out the photo gallery.

FPD Chief Trigo, Sgt. Gottlick receive Valor Awards

A very proud day for Fanwood and its police department as Chief Richard Trigo and Sgt. Marc Gottlick received Valor Awards from the 200 Club, a Union County organization that supports police officers, firefighters and their families. They received the awards at a luncheon in Mountainside, May 9, for "extreme restraint and conducting themselves proficiently and professionally while at great risk under fire" during a standoff with an armed man on Locust Avenue in Fanwood on November 22, 2013, during which police officers were fired upon by a heavily armed man. The individual was taken into custody after a 7-hour standoff and no police officers or residents were injured. Also receiving awards for their response that night were Scotch Plains Officers James Richie, Chris Aversa, Ken Matz and Lt. Joseph Zito, along with the Commander of the Union County SWAT team, Capt. Martin Morgensen. Congrats to Chief Trigo and Sgt. Gottlick!

Fanwood's Boroff, Be Craftful getting some national attention

Just shy of its first anniversary, Fanwood’s Be Craftful and owner Amy Boroff, left, are profiled in the current issue of RetailMinded.com, a national e-magazine for independent businesses. And, she's quoted in a story on the Fox Business News site on help that is available for small businesses. Boroff's store in Fanwood Crossing is a mixture of a drop-in crafting workshop and a retail space for gifts, too. Boroff told the magazine that the feedback the store is getting has been great and that customers like that the store “is a creative indoor play space that is safe.” 

Fanwood Wins Award for Downtown Redevelopment

Fanwood Borough is the proud recipient of a 2014 New Jersey Future Smart Growth Award for our downtown redevelopment plan with the Fanwood Crossing retail/residential complex at its core.

 

NJ Future, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that brings together concerned citizens and leaders to promote responsible land-use policies, chose Fanwood’s Block 64 Redevelopment as one of this year’s recipients in keeping with its mission to “secure economic opportunity, community vitality and quality of life for all New Jerseyans”, according to Peter Kasabach, Executive Director.

 

“There were many who thought nothing would ever happen downtown but together we proved them wrong,” remarked Fanwood Mayor Colleen Mahr, who noted that as recently as 10 years ago, there hadn’t been any new businesses constructed in Fanwood for more than 50 years. She extended her thanks to current and past members of Borough Council, T&M Associates, Maser Consulting and Rogut McCarthy.

 

“I humbly thank you for all the support, guidance and teamwork over the years to get to a moment like this,” she said.

 

Mayor Mahr will accept the award at an event June 5th at the Newark Club in Newark.

 

Construction continues in downtown Fanwood with the Fanwood Crossing II retail/residential complex and additional parking being built on South Avenue directly across from the train station.

Panoramic photo taken from train station shows new Fanwood Crossing at left, 234 South Ave complex at right, space in middle where Fanwood Crossing II is being built. Click image to enlarge.
Panoramic photo taken from train station shows new Fanwood Crossing at left, 234 South Ave complex at right, space in middle where Fanwood Crossing II is being built. Click image to enlarge.

Martine and South Avenues, the Heart of Downtown

Before
Before
After
After

Council Introduces 2014 Budget

Fred Tomkins, Fanwood CFO
Fred Tomkins, Fanwood CFO

The Fanwood Borough Council approved introduction of the 2014 municipal budget at the April 16th, 2014, regular Council meeting. The budget maintains Borough services at their current levels with allowed increases well under the state-mandated 2% cap. As introduced, the municipal portion of the tax increases built into the budget average $71 per household. A public hearing will be scheduled in May.

Memorial Day 2014

Scotch Plains Mayor Kevin Glover, Parade Grand Marshall Malcolm Nettingham, Parade Chairman Don Wussler and Fanwood Mayor Colleen Mahr
Scotch Plains Mayor Kevin Glover, Parade Grand Marshall Malcolm Nettingham, Parade Chairman Don Wussler and Fanwood Mayor Colleen Mahr

The Fanwood Scotch Plains Memorial Day Parade Committee announced its annual concert and parade will be held on Sunday, May 25th, and Monday, May 26th, 2014. The theme of this year’s Memorial Day events will be D-Day Normandy Beach 70th Anniversary.

 

“It is appropriate that we remember and honor the 6000+ American casualties , including 2500-3000 killed , on D-Day just days before June 6th , the 70th anniversary of the invasion,” said Kevin Glover, Mayor of Scotch Plains.

 

The concert will take place on Sunday May 25th on the North Avenue lawn of the historic Fanwood train station beginning at 6:30 pm. The Westfield Community Band will play patriotic melodies, traditional marches and other popular works.

 

“We are pleased to again host the Memorial Day concert . D-Day must never be forgotten by our citizens," said Colleen Mahr, Mayor of Fanwood.

 

The parade will be held on Memorial Day, Monday, May 26th, through downtown Scotch Plains and Fanwood. Malcolm Nettingham, a WWII veteran and one of 300 Tuskegee Airmen to receive the Congressional Gold Medal, is this year's Grand Marshal.

 

The Tuskegee airmen were the first black pilots in American military service. They overcame discrimination and prejudice to become one of the most highly respected groups of service members during WWII. Their achievements paved the way for the full integration of the U.S. military.

 

A resident of Scotch Plains since he was 5 years old, Mr. Nettingham is still active in the community. He is a member of Alpha Lodge #116 F&AM in East Orange, NJ, and is a member in good standing at the Metropolitan Baptist Church in Scotch Plains where he sings in the Men’s Chorus and the Voices of Metropolitan.

 

The Memorial Day parade is funded by Scotch Plains and Fanwood. The concert, however, is made possible by the generosity of local donors--individuals, businesses and community organizations--who support the concert expenses. Checks should be made payable to Township of Scotch Plains, c/o Toni Rollis , Scotch Plains Municipal Building, 430 Park Ave, Scotch Plains. NJ 07076. Ms. Rollis can be reached at (908) 322- 6700 x 314.

Council Adopts Program To Find Cheaper Electricity

Councilman Dan Levine led the Council discussion on the energy aggregation program. Photo by Brian Horton.
Councilman Dan Levine led the Council discussion on the energy aggregation program. Photo by Brian Horton.

The Fanwood Borough Council has passed an ordinance allowing the town to look for cheaper electricity through what's called a government energy aggregation. Under the plan, adopted at a special meeting of the Council Tuesday, April 1, 2014, the Borough is empowered to hire a vendor to scour the energy market for the cheapest electricity available, then sell it to Fanwood citizens. The Borough will only enter into a contract for the power if the cost is lower than that offered by PSE&G. The Borough will begin the process of finding a vendor later this year.

Water Main Upgrades to Multiple Fanwood Streets

Mike Bange, NJ American Water, shows Borough Council before and after photo of a water main needing repair
Mike Bange, NJ American Water, shows Borough Council before and after photo of a water main needing repair

The NJ American Water utility has begun an ambitious project to replace water mains around town that are, in some cases, almost a hundred years old. The $4.8 million project should result in increased water pressure and water flow for many of our residents. Phase One of the project began the week of March 23rd with pipeline replacements scheduled along Martine Avenue from South Avenue to Trenton Avenue, LaGrande Avenue from Martine to McDermott Place, then Trenton Avenue and Saville Row. Phase Two begins the week of April 7th and continues all summer until just after Labor Day. The following streets will receive pipeline replacements during that period: Gere Place, Kempshall Terrace, Chetwood Terrace, Cray Terrace, Vinton Circle, Helen Street, Belvidere Avenue, Burns Way, Herbert Avenue, Marian Avenue, Second Street, First Street, Poplar Place, Klaniecki Place, MacLennan Place, Beech Avenue, LaGrande Avenue, Laurel Place, Clement Place and Winfield Place. Residents on each street will receive a week's notice before construction begins.

Descriptive flyer
Pipeline Replacement Project.pdf
Adobe Acrobat Document [551.0 KB]
Download

One-Seat Ride to NY Now Available, Mon-Fri, Off-Peak Only

Photo by Brian Horton
Photo by Brian Horton

Mayor Colleen Mahr boarded the first of the "one seat ride" trains at Fanwood station Monday morning, March 3rd, 2014,for a ride all the way to New York without having to change trains in Newark. She is seen here about to board with Scotch Plains Mayor Kevin Glover, left, and Raritan Valley Rail Coalition trustee and former Westfield Mayor, Tom Jardim. See video The Raritan Valley Rail Coalition has worked for many years to lobby NJ Transit to establish direct service to New York from the Raritan Valley line, which accounts for about 10% of the total NJ Transit rail ridership. For now, the NY Direct service is only offered on non-peak trains, Monday thru Friday. Weekend and rush hour service are both a ways off because of limitations in capacity in the rail tunnel under the Hudson River. Here's the new train schedule

Historic Census Reports On Display

Earl Phillips and Barbra Lea Couphous examine the census records. Photo by Brian Horton.
Earl Phillips and Barbra Lea Couphous examine the census records. Photo by Brian Horton.

The Fanwood Historic Preservation Commission now has on public exhibition at the Fanwood Museum a copy of Fanwood's full census for the years 1880, 1900, 1910, 1920 and 1930. For the year 1880 the municipality was named Fanwood Township and included what today is Fanwood Borough and Scotch Plains Township. The Fanwood Museum is located in the lower level of the historic railroad station.

Fanwood Recycling Center: 27 Years of Excellence

Mayor Colleen Mahr and Council President Russ Huegel recently paid tribute to Fanwood Recycling manager Alan Ebersole, who has been at the helm of our recycling center since its inception in 1986. Alan has made our recycling center a truly unique and profitable venue for our town, and on January 25th, the Recycling Office was named after him. Congratulations to Alan and everyone who has made the Recycling Center work over the years. More history

Mitchell & Kranz Sworn In, Government Launched for 2014


Mayor Colleen Mahr swore-in Councilwoman Kathy Mitchell and Councilman Tom Kranz during the annual government reorganization meeting on January 1, 2014.

Municipal Parking Lot Reconstruction Underway

West entrance of municipal lot. Commuter spaces will no longer be available.
West entrance of municipal lot. Commuter spaces will no longer be available.

Fanwood's municipal parking lot, which is located behind the stores on Martine Avenue which services shoppers, merchants and commuters, is undergoing major reconstruction as the next phase of the overall downtown redevelopment plan moves forward. The lot is being completely redesigned with construction taking place in several phases, each of which will close a specific portion of the lot at a time.

Lot 2 commuter alternative parking. Click to enlarge.
Lot 2 commuter alternative parking. Click to enlarge.

Patrons of the businesses on Martine and South Avenues can continue to park in the lot during construction but should be prepared for some inconvenience. Everyone who visits our great shops should be reminded that FREE parking is allowed after 3 pm, Monday thru Friday and all day Saturday and Sunday, in the South and North sides of the Fanwood Train Station.

 

The build-out of the shared parking lot will then lead into the next exciting construction project called Fanwood Crossing II which will be a mixed use building that will also have a large pedestrian plaza adjacent to it. The building and plaza will be housed on what was the former Commerce Bank and Livingston-Wilbor Company sites. 

Housing Rehabilitation Program

The Borough of Fanwood is sponsoring a housing rehabilitation program for residents who qualify by income. This program will assist you in replacing a roof, siding, large plumbing and electrical repairs/replacements, etc. If you are in need and interested in completing a confidential application, please call Robin Lospinoso, the Borough’s agent at 732-382-8100, Ext. 13, or Eleanor McGovern, Borough Administrator, at 908-322-8236, Ext. 123.

Food Pantries for Our Community

St. Bart's food pantry
St. Bart's food pantry

St. Bartholomew The Apostle Church in Scotch Plains accepts non-perishable donations during weekend Mass or food can be dropped off at the Rectory during business hours. They do not accept dairy or frozen items. Recommended items include: personal hygiene (shampoo, soap, toothpaste/toothbrushes), paper goods (napkins, paper towels, tissues), pasta, tomato sauce, non-refrigerated Parmesan cheese, peanut butter and jelly, canned tuna, dinner kits, taco kits, canned goods such as fruit, vegetables, and soup, cereal, snack bars, etc. It's important that items are checked for expiration dates as they are not able to distribute items that have passed their date. St. Bart's is located at 2032 Westfield Avenue in Scotch Plains. Tel: 908-322-5192. If someone would like to apply for a food distribution, they can call the Rectory 908-322-5192 and provide their name and address. They will mail them a Registration Letter detailing eligibility requirements.

Fanwood Presbyterian has had a food pantry since 1971.
Fanwood Presbyterian has had a food pantry since 1971.

The Fanwood Presbyterian Church food pantry accepts non-perishable donations weekdays from 9 AM to 4 PM. They prepare monthly grocery bags for their clientele, and prefer donations to be in bulk for easier distribution. Those in need should contact the church at (908) 889-8891.

 

The Evangel Church, 1251 Terrill Road, Scotch Plains, is open Monday thru Friday, 9 AM to 5 PM or by appointment for evening hours. The pantry contains dry foods and non-perishables, sometimes small sized diapers, formula and basic toiletries.  Thehy require a photo id and an application that is completed upon the first visit.  When the application is completed they meet with someone in the community life department that gauges why there is a need and checks to see if they are deeper needs that in need of some kind of referral. The amount of food that is given is dependent on how many are living at home. The food pantry client can get food once a month.  If they collect on the third week then the third week of every month they can come in.

Read the latest Fanwoodian Newsletter


Click on any item in the calendar to send yourself an email reminder

Get email alerts

Fanwood-Scotch Plains Information Radio

Click for audio
Click for audio

Links