Growing up in Bergen County, I didn’t think there was any other place in New Jersey where Jews could flourish. I met a guy from South Jersey – he worked there, and I worked in Manhattan, so we needed to find a home halfway. We spent a Shabbos in Highland Park/Edison, and it felt very familiar.
Find out more about Highland Park/Edison at the OU Jewish Communities Fair on April 30
The streets were flooded with friendly faces, ages, and various dresses, and all seemed united. Now I realize that there are many shuls, and people are members of more than one.
There’s a pizza store, bakery, Dunkin Donuts, sushi, fleishig fast food, and many places to buy kosher groceries. It was just like the town I grew up in, but it seemed housing prices/taxes had not caught up with the times yet.
We moved in when I was pregnant with our first. In the beginning, we were invited out every Shabbat and really got to know people. When our son was born, he was like a community baby. My parents came for the Shalom Zachar and walked Shabbos afternoon to visit me in the hospital. What my dad said really struck a chord.
“I always wanted you to move to Teaneck, but after spending Shabbos, I am glad you are here. You moved in a short while ago, yet, the Rabbis know you well, and the outpouring of love this community has shown you is unmatched. It’s like you live in a tight-knit village of those who support you, but they are numerous. It’s a small town feel, but with amenities not available in emerging communities.”
That was eight years ago, and we still feel the same. We are lucky to have found this gem in the center of NJ. Come and see for yourself.
Check out more Torah communities outside the metropolitan area at our biannual Communities Fair on April 30!
The words of this author reflect his/her own opinions and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Orthodox Union.