Many people see Fanwood as a more affordable alternative to next-door neighbor, Westfield. It has an interesting assortment of houses, a downtown and a railroad station. The mix of housing helps to give Fanwood its charm. On the North side of town and around the center, are the larger Victorians and colonials from the turn-of-the 20th Century when Fanwood was founded. Elsewhere, you will find the 1930's Arts-and-Crafts style homes, 1940's and 50's capes and 1960's split-levels and ranches. If you are looking for a town house or new construction, there is not much available. The town was fully built out in the 1960's and township building setback rulings have discouraged the knockdowns that lead to the rebuilding activity that other towns are experiencing. In downtown, several three and four-story mixed use properties have been built with shops below and more than 100 rental apartments above. Location and pricing have made the town especially appealing.
Commuting From Fanwood
If you are looking for a small, quaint town with the train station right in the middle, Fanwood might be the town for you! New Jersey Transit trains run the Raritan Valley Line from Fanwood to Newark, with connections to Penn Station, New York or the PATH train to Lower Manhattan. New Jersey Transit also offers a bus service that goes from Fanwood to the Port Authority in New York City. The Fanwood Train Station is a delight. Built in 1874 (and featured in the photo above), this Victorian station is the oldest in Union County. The station was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1980.
Dining in Fanwood
Fanwood is not a hub for fine dining! If you are looking for the special event restaurant, most people travel to nearby Westfield. However, Fanwood does claim one or two local gems. Ginger Sushi is popular, as is Tasty Thai. Fabio's Bistro is also a favorite. Otherwise, there are good local pizza and bistro-type restaurants.
Recreation and Parks
Fanwood has a busy Township Recreation Department. LaGrande Park offers an extensive summer recreation program with everything from art classes to golf lessons. They offer many programs among which are the Annual Easter Egg Hunt held in Forest Road Park. There is also a Summer Tweens & Teens Travel Camp, Spring and Summer programs for children and a variety of other events. Throughout the summer and fall, many Fanwood neighborhoods hold block parties and the entire town celebrates "Fanny Wood Day" in September. Enjoy La Grande Park's tennis courts for summer fun. Indoors, the town library and arts center in the Carriage House beside Borough Hall offer lectures, poetry readings and musical coffee houses. Fanwood is definitely a family-oriented town that you and your children will enjoy.
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