“Sibling Towns with Individual Personalities”
Collectively known as “The Caldwells,” Caldwell, West Caldwell and North Caldwell represent three of the most desirable suburbs that northern New Jersey has to offer. Closely aligned yet very distinct, these communities have it all – a vibrant commercial district, sweeping parks, stunning homes, and small town charm.
Grover Cleveland Park, named for the U.S. President who was born in Caldwell, is a 41-acre oasis shared by Caldwell, West Caldwell and neighboring Essex Fells. With its rolling meadow, serene duck pond and scenic walking paths, the park is the perfect place to commune with nature and experience the changing beauty of the seasons. For those looking for a more active outing, the park has a children’s playground, tennis, bocce and shuffleboard courts, and a baseball diamond. Also a hub of community activities, the park hosts weekly summer concerts and an annual Halloween Parade in the fall, where hundreds of children show off their costumes, play games and collect bags of treats.
Bloomfield Avenue, a vibrant commercial strip, runs through all three towns and offers a wide range of shopping, dining and entertainment options. With most activity concentrated in the Caldwell section, this bustling downtown has a movie theater, unique specialty stores, and an eclectic coffee shop, plus it hosts a fall street fair every year. Food in the Caldwells is top notch, serving up everything from eclectic world cuisine to hearty home cooking. There’s Dough, an artisanal pizzeria that sources local, farm-fresh ingredients, and Ocha, an innovative sushi spot where the chef creates succulent dishes right before your eyes. There’s also Bangkok Kitchen for Thai and Fat Fish Taco for Mexican. Families love Cloverleaf Tavern, where kids enjoy free face painting on Wednesdays, and Central Burger where youngsters order milkshake flavors like s’mores, fruity pebbles and coco puffs. And, of course, there’s the famous Calandra’s Italian Village that attracts swarms of visitors from around the state. With its two restaurants, deli, bakery and gelato shop, you will lose yourself in authentic Italian cuisine. Mangiare bene!
The Caldwells offer even more opportunities for physical and community activity. At the Caldwell Community Center members participate in a wide variety of activities including swim lessons, tennis lessons, and paddleboard yoga. Caldwell residents also have access to West Caldwell’s two community pools – Cedar Street and Westville Avenue. Both facilities have Olympic-sized pools, playgrounds and basketball courts and Cedar Street also has a separate “kiddie pool.” The West Caldwell Public Library offers activities for all ages, including story time, LEGO night, and family movie screenings. The town is also proud of its Recreation Program, which is considered one of the finest and most comprehensive in New Jersey. Kids and adults can take advantage of programs ranging from twirling and wrestling to volleyball and track. Residents also enjoy the two community pools and community events like the Holiday Tree Lighting and summer concert series at The Gazebo in Crane Park. And North Caldwell neighbors often gather at the town’s 28-acre recreational complex that includes six tennis courts, three baseball diamonds, a nature path and a municipal pool. At the swim club, families enjoy the Olympic-sized pool, waterslides, and popular movie nights. Throughout the year, the town also sponsors events like the Labor Day Town Picnic, a community-wide celebration complete with food, live music, and carnival games. And on the first Sunday in December, Santa arrives at the annual tree lighting ceremony while a DJ spins and the boy scouts serve hot chocolate and cider. It’s truly a magical evening!
Caldwell shares its school district with West Caldwell (Caldwell-West Caldwell) and has a reputation for being tight-knit and high performing. In a nod to the area’s rich history, the elementary schools bear the names of U.S. Presidents Jefferson, Lincoln, Washington and Wilson and the middle school is named for Grover Cleveland. Boasting an A- rating on Niche.com, the district has a 12:1 student-teacher ratio, which lends itself to a more individualized learning environment. James Caldwell High School ranks in the Top 50 public high schools in New Jersey and offers a rigorous curriculum and a diverse slate of extracurricular activities including the political discussion club, the jazz ensemble and the fashion club. Standout athletic programs include girls’ volleyball and softball and boys’ lacrosse.
The top-tier North Caldwell School District serves students K-6 and boasts a 10:1 student-teacher ratio. For grades 7 through 12, students attend the West Essex Regional High School, along with students from Essex Fells, Fairfield and Roseland. In addition to a rigorous curriculum, students participate in enrichment programs aimed at diversifying their education. From assemblies to class trips to musical productions to opportunities at Rutgers University, students at West Essex Regional High School have the world at their fingertips.
Although “The Caldwells” do not have their own train station, residents have many options for making the 23-mile commute into NYC. While some drive to nearby train stations in Montclair, others, who work in downtown Manhattan, opt to take the PATH from the Harrison station. There are also several buses that run express to Port Authority that you can catch on Bloomfield Avenue or from the Willowbrook Mall in Wayne.