WEST ORANGE, NJ - There's always something going on in Essex County. From Irises to potential employment, here are events the public is invited to attend along with highlights of what's been happening.

National Public Gardens Day at Presby Memorial Iris Gardens 
To promote National Public Gardens Day, on May 9 the County Executive and members of the Presby Memorial Iris Gardens Citizens will tour the Essex County Presby Memorial Iris Gardens, located at 474 Upper Mountain Avenue in Montclair beginning at 10:00 am. May 9 - June 4 is  peak blooming season at the Gardens, which feature over 14,000 irises of approximately 3,000 varieties and produce over 100,000 blooms. For information about Bloom Season at the Essex County Presby Memorial Iris Gardens, call 973-783-5974.

Essex County Branch Brook Park Fishing Derby 
Joe DiVincenzo, along with the Essex County Department of Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs, will hold its annual Essex County Fishing Derby in Branch Brook Park-Prudential Concert Grove (Park Avenue entrance). The derby is free and open to children ages 15 and younger. All children must be accompanied by an adult and bring their own fishing pole, bait, bucket and chair. Prizes in various age categories for catching fish will be awarded at the conclusion of each derby.  Registration for the derby will be held at 8:00 am and the derby will be held between 9:00 - 11:00 am. For additional information, please call 973-735-6229. The fishing derbies will be held rain or shine.                                              

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2014 Essex County Job Fair 
The 2014 Essex County Job Fair is set for Thursday, May 15 from 10:00 am - 3:00 pm in the Essex County College Gymnasium, 303 University Avenue, Newark. Over 100 vendors and service providers are expected. Health care, banking, higher education, wireless communication, social service agencies, retail opportunities, food preparation, law enforcement, property management, hotels and tourism, sales, printing, military, and shipping and logistics will be on hand. In addition, County offices and local agencies will have information available about health screenings, job readiness skills, foreclosure and homelessness prevention, and more.

Admission to the Essex County Job Fair is free and open to the public. Pre-registration is available on-line at www.essexcountynj.org or in person at the Essex County One-Stop Career Center located at 50 South Clinton Street, 2nd Floor, in East Orange. On-site registration is also available at the event. For more information, please call the Essex County Department of Economic Development, Training and Employment at 973-395-8415.

Construction of Lenape Walking Path in Branch Brook Park 
On April 25 the County Executive, along with the Branch Brook Park Alliance, announced that construction of the two-mile Lenape Walking Path in Essex County Branch Brook Park is underway. The path will be comprised of a rubberized surface and provide park goers with a safe trail through the Northern Division of Branch Brook Park, which extends from Heller Parkway to Bloomfield Avenue.

“The Northern section of Branch Brook Park is heavily used by hikers, joggers and people just out for a walk. This new, rubberized pathway will create a formal trail for visitors to use and exercise safely as they move through the park,” DiVincenzo said. “This project is part of our ongoing comprehensive restoration of the park in its 116-year history and embodies one of our key goals – to promote the park as a place that will contribute to more healthful habits and promote wellness among residents of Essex County.” 

Special Olympics 
Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Jr hosted approximately 400 young athletes with physical and mental disabilities along with their coaches from 20 Essex County schools and facilities. The athletes completed in the Eleventh Annual Essex County Special Olympics Track and Field Competition at Essex County Brookdale Park on Wednesday, April 23.

The following schools and organizations participated in the Essex Olympic event: Bloomfield High School; Branch Brook School, Camden Elementary School, Camden Middle School, Central High School, First Avenue School, Benjamin Franklin School, Louise A. Spencer School, John F. Kennedy School, New Jersey Regional Day, 13thAvenue School, all from Newark; Essex County West Caldwell Tech; First Cerebral Palsy from Belleville; Jespy House from South Orange; The Horizon School and Horizon Grammar School from Livingston; New Beginnings from Fairfield; Independent Gardeslen; West Essex Regional High School from North Caldwell and Celebrate the Children from Denville.
Philip Thigpen Memorial  
On April 16, Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Jr. dedicated a bronze plaque honoring the late Essex County Register and Essex County Democratic Committee Chairman Philip A. Thigpen. The plaque is located on the promenade in the Essex County Government Complex. Mr. Thigpen was a resident of Montclair when he passed away on October 29, 2013, at the age of 87.