Arts & Entertainment

Letters to the Editor

BHCP and the Y: Working to Do What’s Right for Our Community


It’s Memorial Day weekend in Berkeley Heights, and many residents are observing treasured traditions.  We honor our fallen heroes, gather with family and friends, and for many adults and children, this weekend marks the opening of the beloved Berkeley Heights Community Pool, as it has for more than 50 years.  This year, though, it’s different but quite special.

First of all, many of us are breathing a huge sigh of relief. We came perilously close to losing BHCP.  In reading the social media posts lauding not just the pool’s opening but many improvements, I’m feeling grateful that we live in a community where partnerships between our municipal government and non-public entities are embraced.

Seeking a solution to several challenges, the volunteer BHCP Board approached the Berkeley Heights YMCA, as a like-minded community institution, about assuming responsibility for the day-to-day operations of BHCP. The time to act was short, but in actuality, the timing could not have been better.  After trying for years to find a new location for its expanding programs, the leadership of the Y was also seeking a solution.  Without new space, it might have to close the branch, leaving children, families, seniors, and those living with cancer without programs they’ve come to depend on.   Through determined outreach efforts, it became clear that the Y had the resources and interest to operate BHCP, replace our aging community pool with a new pool, and build a new Y facility at the Locust Avenue location.  It was brilliant but complicated and we needed support and involvement from the Township Council in order to turn this creative idea into reality.

Sign Up for E-News

The Town owns the land on which BHCP was built, and since 1964, has leased it to BHCP.  So, the Town needed to agree that the Y replace BHCP as the leaseholder of the land, both the Y and Town needed to conduct due diligence, and negotiate new terms of the lease, all in time for the Y to open the pool by Memorial Day weekend. The leadership of the Y and BHCP, along with the Mayor and entire Town Council, worked through all the issues while keeping everyone informed and inviting public commentary.  Together, we found a solution that keeps BHCP in business, allows our Y to stay in town and build a better facility to serve our community, and provides new revenue to the Town over the course of a 50-year lease.   This critical decision also keeps this parcel of land recreational and provides services and facilities that benefit the entire community.

BHCP is in better shape than it’s been for years. The Y has been amazing.  In a few short weeks since the lease was signed, the team hustled to get the facility ready to open. And they’ve applied huge doses of TLC to BHCP.   The exterior and interior of the facility were painted, the interior of the building renovated, the bathrooms upgraded, numerous repairs made to the pool, the roof fixed, electric service upgraded, a new fence installed at the back of the property, security enhanced, landscaping improved, and to the joy of many, new chairs were purchased for the use of BHCP members.

And here’s my timely commentary, and it’s far more than a footnote to this story. Elections matter! The way our Mayor and Town Council focused on this project and worked so hard and fast to bring it all together underscores the value of responsible leaders focused on making Berkeley Heights a wonderful place to live.  Let’s keep these leaders—people like Jeanne Kingsley and Marc Faecher—in place and working to do what’s right for our community.   Please vote for Jeanne and Marc Tuesday June 6th in the Republican Primary.

The opinions expressed herein are the writer's alone, and do not reflect the opinions of or anyone who works for is not responsible for the accuracy of any of the information supplied by the writer. Click here to submit a Letter to the Editor.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

Sign Up for E-News

Berkeley Heights

Berkeley Heights’ Women of the Week (WoW) Series features Beth Ferris Sale

March 18, 2018

In honor of the women who are driving change, blazing trails and nurturing society, the Berkeley Heights Diversity Council is pleased to announce an exciting initiative called, Women of the Week (WoW) Series. In the spirit of community, we wanted to honor the women right here in Berkeley Heights who are impacting the world in their own way for the remaining weeks of Women’s History ...

Faith Lutheran Church in New Providence Schedules Holy Week Services

March 21, 2018


Faith Lutheran Church in New Providence invites area residents to each of its liturgical services during Holy Week.

On Passion or Palm Sunday, March 25, two Eucharistic liturgies will be conducted, one at 8:30 a.m. and the other at 11 a.m. The title of the sermon at both liturgies will be “Servant of All.”  The music of each liturgy will be provided by the Sanctuary ...

91 Young Musicians Work Together To Raise Nearly $14,000 for the New Jersey Youth Symphony

NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ —91 young musicians in the New Jersey Youth Symphony’s Youth Orchestra (YO) ensemble have raised nearly $14,000 to date for the organization’s annual Playathon, a student-led fundraiser established by the New Jersey Youth Symphony (NJYS) in 1985. The Playathon is the largest free concert of its kind and this Sunday over 450 students from 12 NJYS ensembles ...

UC Tech Student Volunteers Put Fun and Games to Work for Special Needs Learners

SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- Earlier this month, a group of 51 students in grades 9 to 11 from the Teacher Education Academy at UC TECH staged an indoor carnival for special needs learners. More than 140 participants from the community attended the event and enjoyed plinko, corn hole, dance revolution, hula hoop activities, a DJ, prizes and more.

UC TECH is part of the Union County ...

Soprano Anita Lyons Featured Soloist at Summit Symphony Concert March 25

The music of Grieg, Schumann ad Strauss will form the centerpiece of the next Summit Symphony Orchestra concert of the 2017-18 season, a performance which will take place March 25, beginning at 2 p.m., in the Summit High School Auditorium. Admission to all Summit Symphony concerts is free, with donations gratefully accepted. 

American Soprano Anita Lyons will ...

NPHS Student's Response to After School Walk-out Plan at NPHS

March 14, 2018

A group of students file into a science classroom amid a nervous din of chatter, the air is electric with excitement and nervousness. This small group of approximately 30 students are a studious bunch, largely members of the sophomore class with squeaky clean administrative histories. They are currently preparing to defy authority and stand up for what they believe in, even though they had been ...

New Providence's Allen W. Roberts School Gets Security Walk Through by Police Department after Bomb Threat

March 12, 2018

NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ - The New Providence Police Department sent a letter to parents and guardians of students at Allen W. Roberts Elementary School after a non-specific bomb threat was reported on Monday afternoon.

It's the second threat  reported at a New Providence school in March. The first threat was reported on March 5th at New Providence High School.

Emergency ...

Hillsborough: Suspended HS Athletic Director Charged with Theft

March 20, 2018

HILLSBOROUGH, NJ - Suspended Hillsborough High School Athletic Director Michael Fanizzi has been arrested and charged with the theft of $10,704 in athletic event receipts over a four-year period from 2013-2017, according to Somerset County Prosecutor Michael H. Robertson.

Fanizzi, 53, a resident of Conover Way in Hillsborough who had been athletics director for 14 years,, had been suspended ...

Upcoming Events

Wed, March 21, 5:30 PM

Great Swamp Watershed Association, Morristown

Coffee & Tea Tasting - FREE GSWA Event

Arts & Entertainment Education Food & Drink

Wed, March 21, 7:00 PM

Summit Free Public Library, Summit

increase your networking and interviewing iq

Business & Finance Other

Thu, March 22, 7:00 PM

Summit Free Public Library, Summit

The Long march home: An American Soldier's Life ...

Education Other


Fri, March 23, 9:30 AM

Dunkin Donuts, Berkeley Heights

Let’s Meet Up to Clean Up! BH Walks, a New ...


Fri, March 23, 8:00 PM

Burgdorff Center for the Performing Arts, Maplewood

Strollers Present John Patrick Shanley's "Doubt"

Arts & Entertainment

JCP&L Representative Describes Utility’s Actions During Storm Quinn, Answers Residents' Questions

BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ – The format of this week’s  Berkeley Heights 'Here and Now' was turned on its head this week. Mayor Bob Woodruff reviewed what happened in the township following Storm Quinn and its predecessor Storm Riley, complete with statistics. He then asked a representative of JCP&L questions about the utility’s response, and how it was ...

Berkeley Heights, Here and Now: Redevelopment Updates

BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ - The Mayor's Round Table has been rebranded to "Berkeley Heights, Here and Now." This new format will continue to provide updates from Mayor Bob Woodruff, municipal offices and the Communications Committee want to hear from citizens, businesses and community organizations.

Included in this episode, Mayor Bob Woodruff addresses the status of the ...

Dear Susan: Beauty Tips from a Beauty Expert, Spring Edition

SUSAN BARBAGLIA, owner of Skin Deep Salon and Spa in New Providence, offers a wealth of knowledge and expertise as a leader in the beauty industry. With over thirty years experience in skin care, Susan can answer your most challenging beauty questions. Email your ...

You Want a Check for How Much!

 My first admissions gig was working for a small liberal arts college with a pretty hefty price tag.  Picture me at a college fair: name tag in place, pile of brochures ready to go.  An eager family would walk up and we’d start a conversation.  One of the first questions I’d get from parents was about cost and the moment that $50,000-plus figure left my mouth I ...

Now That The Dust Has Settled…Smart Tax Moves In 2018

Now that the dust has settled, here are some smart tax moves to lower your taxes and/or avoid higher taxes/penalties in 2018. These steps may be especially helpful if you live in high property and high income tax states (e.g. New Jersey, New York, California) since state and local tax deductions are capped.  Unfortunately all these changes mean you’ll need more time and energy to ...