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Old 06-13-2011, 05:42 PM
 
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We are househunting in these 3 towns (wyckoff, glen rock, ridgewood) and am looking for an honest take on two things: 1) which town has the biggest Jewish community and 2) which town is most "Down to earth" and less "keeping up with the joneses"
Thanks in advance for any takes on this.
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Old 06-13-2011, 06:08 PM
 
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Glen Rock probably has the largest Jewish population but it is a fairly small minority in all 3 of the towns.

Honestly, they are all very wealthy towns and with that kind of wealth, you probably wont see "down to earth". Glen Rock probably the most, but only because it has majorly gained in status over the last 20 years. Because of that, you have some middle class folks hanging onto their homes they bought in the 90s.
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Old 06-14-2011, 12:41 PM
Status: "Uncomfortably numb" (set 24 days ago)
 
Location: Coastal New Jersey
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Hmm. I would think Wyckoff is the town with the larger, active Jewish community (thinking of Barnert Temple--a Reformed congregation--which is actually in Franklin Lakes). I suppose that can be verified, though.

Glen Rock, IMO, is the least "down to earth". I used to do some part-time work for their town newspaper, and I was struck by the snobbery and competitiveness I encountered in the short time I covered some community events--and I'm talking Scouting and library-related events. Subsequently, I became friends with a lady who works in one of the elementary schools, in a position of responsibility that I won't name here, and she said the Glen Rock parents were the worst she has ever dealt with as far as making a scene if their kid gets a bad grade or is disciplined for doing something wrong. Glen Rock desperately wants to be Ridgewood, and it's not. Meanwhile, I've known a few very wealthy Ridgewoodites who were just as nice and down-to-earth as could be.
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Old 06-14-2011, 01:09 PM
 
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My question is why do people always look in the richest towns in order to find "down to earth" people. If you want down to earth buy a gigantic house in Fair Lawn. Big Jewish population and way more down to earth.
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Old 06-14-2011, 03:08 PM
 
Location: Glen Rock, NJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mightyqueen801 View Post
Hmm. I would think Wyckoff is the town with the larger, active Jewish community (thinking of Barnert Temple--a Reformed congregation--which is actually in Franklin Lakes). I suppose that can be verified, though.

Glen Rock, IMO, is the least "down to earth". I used to do some part-time work for their town newspaper, and I was struck by the snobbery and competitiveness I encountered in the short time I covered some community events--and I'm talking Scouting and library-related events. Subsequently, I became friends with a lady who works in one of the elementary schools, in a position of responsibility that I won't name here, and she said the Glen Rock parents were the worst she has ever dealt with as far as making a scene if their kid gets a bad grade or is disciplined for doing something wrong. Glen Rock desperately wants to be Ridgewood, and it's not. Meanwhile, I've known a few very wealthy Ridgewoodites who were just as nice and down-to-earth as could be.
Boy, MQ I know you're just sharing your perspective but you are way down on GR everytime I see you post...I figure this is real personal for you? I don't live in GR but I do like the town and the people I've met are quite nice.
What exactly do you mean that GR "wants to desperately be Ridgewood"?
I would say most towns in Northern Bergen would love to have the downtown and buzz a Ridgewood has, I see nothing wrong with that. If a town is trying to emulate Ridgewood's charm then it's much better then trying to do nothing to improve it's urban vibe. That's my take.
I currently live in a not so great neighborhood in NY State --looking to move your way and can tell you, 1st hand that there are ignorant fools everywhere. The selfish syndrome exists even in the worst of towns. I tend to believe we surround ourselves with the folks who we like. That's my down to earth fact. Now I know with children it becomes much more complicated but I surely do not participate in every mommy event just because our children share a classroom. It's a process to find good friends. For some it comes easy for others, not as easy.
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Old 06-15-2011, 04:50 AM
Status: "Uncomfortably numb" (set 24 days ago)
 
Location: Coastal New Jersey
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No, nothing personal about Glen Rock. Experience just left a bad taste in my mouth from some of the people I observed there, I guess, and the woman I know who is in the school system had the same impression. Of course, an entire town can't be made up of all the same exact kinds of people, lol.
I am old and cranky, so I remember Glen Rock when it was a less affluent small town. It has changed in character, but I guess every place does eventually.
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Old 06-15-2011, 06:45 AM
Status: "Uncomfortably numb" (set 24 days ago)
 
Location: Coastal New Jersey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lfsr1544 View Post
Boy, MQ I know you're just sharing your perspective but you are way down on GR everytime I see you post...I figure this is real personal for you? I don't live in GR but I do like the town and the people I've met are quite nice.
What exactly do you mean that GR "wants to desperately be Ridgewood"?
I would say most towns in Northern Bergen would love to have the downtown and buzz a Ridgewood has, I see nothing wrong with that. If a town is trying to emulate Ridgewood's charm then it's much better then trying to do nothing to improve it's urban vibe. That's my take.
I currently live in a not so great neighborhood in NY State --looking to move your way and can tell you, 1st hand that there are ignorant fools everywhere. The selfish syndrome exists even in the worst of towns. I tend to believe we surround ourselves with the folks who we like. That's my down to earth fact. Now I know with children it becomes much more complicated but I surely do not participate in every mommy event just because our children share a classroom. It's a process to find good friends. For some it comes easy for others, not as easy.
I had to think about what I meant for a few minutes. What it is is that Ridgewood didn't ever have to create itself. It's long been a more affluent town, going back more than a century, with more of a connection to the city than the small towns that surrounded it. It's always had that "village" flavor to it. In the past 25 - 30 years, as the surrounding towns have moved from little hick towns into affluence, most have retained some vestiges of their originality. Midland Park, though only still holding a minority of people of Dutch descent now, still hangs on to its Hollander roots, for example. Allendale, which was semi-country with a few horse farms (and a run-down yet popular bar on the main street that made great burgers), turned into a bedroom community of large homes and the rundown bar got dressed up, but it still retains a sort of small-town "country" feel going back to its roots. Glen Rock, on the other hand, seems to only emulate its next-door neighbor in the way it set up its main street. Ridgewood has an inherent quaintness. Glen Rock is trying to look quaint. There's a difference. In fairness, GR always did have some of the nice, large, older homes with the big trees that are similar to the Ridgewood look. And it's got its own rock. This is all just my perspective, of course.
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Old 06-15-2011, 07:17 PM
 
Location: Glen Rock, NJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mightyqueen801 View Post
I had to think about what I meant for a few minutes. What it is is that Ridgewood didn't ever have to create itself. It's long been a more affluent town, going back more than a century, with more of a connection to the city than the small towns that surrounded it. It's always had that "village" flavor to it. In the past 25 - 30 years, as the surrounding towns have moved from little hick towns into affluence, most have retained some vestiges of their originality. Midland Park, though only still holding a minority of people of Dutch descent now, still hangs on to its Hollander roots, for example. Allendale, which was semi-country with a few horse farms (and a run-down yet popular bar on the main street that made great burgers), turned into a bedroom community of large homes and the rundown bar got dressed up, but it still retains a sort of small-town "country" feel going back to its roots. Glen Rock, on the other hand, seems to only emulate its next-door neighbor in the way it set up its main street. Ridgewood has an inherent quaintness. Glen Rock is trying to look quaint. There's a difference. In fairness, GR always did have some of the nice, large, older homes with the big trees that are similar to the Ridgewood look. And it's got its own rock. This is all just my perspective, of course.
interesting perspective. Love your history info... I bet you have some old school pics of what No Bergen used to look like? you should post those, I'm sure folks would enjoy it.
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Old 06-15-2011, 07:24 PM
Status: "Uncomfortably numb" (set 24 days ago)
 
Location: Coastal New Jersey
64,671 posts, read 60,996,773 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lfsr1544 View Post
interesting perspective. Love your history info... I bet you have some old school pics of what No Bergen used to look like? you should post those, I'm sure folks would enjoy it.
Hmm, I'm sure my mother has some, at least of Midland Park. She's still there.

My grandmother died in 2001 at the age of 94. We were going through her stuff, and we came across her eighth-grade graduation diploma from 1922. You know how there is an elementary school in Ridgewood called The Willard School? Well, her diploma was signed by Mr. Willard.
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Old 06-16-2011, 07:26 PM
 
Location: Glen Rock, NJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mightyqueen801 View Post
Hmm, I'm sure my mother has some, at least of Midland Park. She's still there.

My grandmother died in 2001 at the age of 94. We were going through her stuff, and we came across her eighth-grade graduation diploma from 1922. You know how there is an elementary school in Ridgewood called The Willard School? Well, her diploma was signed by Mr. Willard.
wonder if he got along with Mr Hawes
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