Religions and Spirituality

Residents of all Nationalities and Faiths Help Celebrate Columbus Day

President of the Plainfields' Chapter of UNICO, Santi Buscemi Credits: Darlene Tedesco Cullen
Congressman Frank Pallone, Assemblyman Patrick J Diegnan and Mayor Michael Giordano from North Plainfield Credits: Darlene Tedesco Cullen
Master of Ceremonies, Councilman Robert Bengivenga Credits: Darlene Tedesco Cullen
Congressman Frank Pallone Credits: Darlene Tedesco Cullen
Assemblyman Patrick J Diegnan Credits: Darlene Tedesco Cullen
Interim Superintendent Dr. Johanna Ruberto Credits: Darlene Tedesco Cullen
Board of Education President Debbie Boyle Credits: Darlene Tedesco Cullen
Council President Derryck White Credits: Darlene Tedesco Cullen
Renato Biribin Credits: Darlene Tedesco Cullen
April Bengivenga with Councilman Robert Bengivenga Credits: Darlene Tedesco Cullen

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – Listing both great contributions in history as well as an impassioned speech regarding the marvelous accomplishments of Christopher Columbus, Santi Buscemi  President of the Plainfields’ of UNICO Chapter left attendees both teary eyed and proud of their Italian heritage at the annual Columbus Day Celebration at the South Plainfield Senior Center.

“Christopher Columbus, this most important of navigators did not simply find a new hemisphere, but served to unite two worlds,” said Buscemi. Buscemi, the Key Note Speaker of the day’s event seemed to unite everyone, young and old with his stories of Italian heritage and legacy among family.

UNICO’s Columbus celebration brought out a sea of elected officials including Congressman Frank Pallone, South Plainfield Assemblyman Patrick J. Diegnan, Assemblywoman Nancy Pinkin, South Plainfield Council President Derryck White, Councilman Ray Rusnak, South Plainfield School Board President Debbie Boyle, South Plainfield School Board members Carol Byrne and Bill Sesselberg, and North Plainfield Mayor Michael Giordano Jr. Also in attendance, Interim Superintendent Dr. Johanna Ruberto, Acting Principal of South Plainfield High School Ronnie Spring, and South Plainfield Police Chief James Parker. South Plainfield Councilman Robert Bengivenga was the day’s Master of Ceremonies.

Sign Up for E-News

“We celebrate our diversity in America and that started with Christopher Columbus,” said Assemblyman Diegnan. “With his spirit of adventure and challenging borders. His spirit became the spirit of America, and this is the one day out of the year I can say I’m Italian.”

South Plainfield Council President Derryck White presented April Bengivenga, Chairperson of the Columbus Day Committee, with a proclamation declaring October as Italian Heritage and Cultural Month. Today we are all Italians, said White. “I can be Derryck Bianco.”

“It was an honor to MC today’s Columbus Day Program,” said South Plainfield Councilman Robert Bengivenga. “Columbus Day is very special to me, and by the crowd and the number of dignitaries in attendance, my feelings are not alone.”

One of the dignitaries in attendance was United States Congressman Frank Pallone. “It isn’t only Columbus that we celebrate, but the spirit of innovation and discovery,” said Pallone.

North Plainfield Michael Giordano said “It is great to be here today to celebrate our heritage and Columbus’ fearless approach to navigation and exploration.”

Sign Up for E-News

South Plainfield High School’s choir and color guard performed “The Star-Spangled Banner” and South Plainfield High School’s award-winning marching band played the Italian national anthem during the raising of the Italian flag.

Deacon Wayne Otlowski from Sacred Heart Church performed both the invocation and the benediction during the Columbus Day celebration festivities.

After the flag raising ceremony, there was a brief reception inside the Senior Center. After the reception, the UNICO members set sail on their own voyage. There was a bus waiting outside the Senior Center to take the members to the Columbus Day parade in New York City. The trip would include all of today’s modern conveniences such as iPhones, GPS, and air-conditioning, but to the UNICO members on board it was a day to celebrate the man with a little more than a compass and a ruler that in 1492 sailed the ocean blue.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

South Plainfield

The Athlete of the Week Marc Giordano Wrestling

The South Plainfield Wrestling Team continues to have a very successful season.  The team not only won a Group III State Championship for the third consecutive year, but they also won a state record 34th consecutive District Championship.  The top three wrestlers will go on to compete in Union in the Regions for the opportunity to wrestle in Atlantic City for an individual state ...

The Athlete of the Week Joe Sacco Wrestling

The South Plainfield Wrestling Team finished their dual meet season with a deceiving 20-7 record.  This past week saw the Tigers defeat Ewing (69-4), Bordentown Regional (49-9), and Ocean Township (54-6) to win the Central Jersey Group III Sectional Championship.  This advanced South Plainfield to the Group III State Championships yet again.  The wrestling team defeated Voorhees ...


South Plainfield – Louise D. Valentino, 91, died Wednesday February 21, 2018 at JFK Medical ...
Read more

Letters to the Editor

South Plainfield Middle School Student Council Thanks Supporters

February 21, 2018

The South Plainfield Middle School Student Council would like to express our thanks for the support of local businesses and organizations in our fundraising efforts.  A spaghetti dinner was hosted by the South Plainfield Elks Lodge #2298 on January 13th.  Mrs. Sharon Reuter and members of her Youth Committee and kitchen crew provided dinner for family, friends and staff of South ...

South Plainfield Residents  Named to Fall 2017 Dean's List at Seton Hall University

February 13, 2018

SOUTH ORANGE, NJ -- Seton Hall University is pleased to announce the following students who qualified for Fall 2017 Dean's list and to congratulate them for their outstanding academic achievements:

Brooke Barry, Lindsay Celentano, Cj Dudek, Kaitlyn Faustini, Christopher McNeil,  Meagan Praul,  

Kyle Russell, Matthew Taco Bravo and Tomasz ...

Community Happenings

Volleyball Fundraiser for the Eggert Family on March 11, 2018

February 18, 2018


Two divisions, Co-Ed High School and Co-Ed adult

Guaranteed two games per team

Double Elimination

8 people per team



High School teams = $50 per team

Adult Teams = $100 per team

12 Teams Max for each division

Please mail checks to 1107 Worth Drive, South Plainfield NJ 07080

High school - please submit your teams and payment to Justin ...

Holy Savior Academy hosts appreciation luncheon for Deanery Pastors

February 16, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - The students and Board of Limited Jurisdiction of Holy Savior Academy (HSA), South Plainfield hosted a special luncheon to honor and celebrate the Pastors of twelve local Catholic churches that sponsor the school.  

The event was held at HSA on Tuesday February 13 and included a festive lunch featuring a home-cooked meal prepared by members of ...

Holy Savior Academy Cheer Competition

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - Holy Savior Academy’s cheerleading squad is on winning streak.  Competing at the Biddy Level in the CCCANJ League, the girls took 1st place in the first two competitions of this cheer season. The 12 girl squad competed in the Immaculate Conception and the St. Mary’s competitions and came out on top beating fellow Catholic Schools, Immaculate ...

Bios, Photos of Past Labor Day Grand Marshals Needed for Eagle Scout Project

February 21, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – Joseph Kelly, a senior at South Plainfield High School and member of Boy Scout Troop 207, is seeking the community’s help to see his Eagle Scout project come to fruition.

Kelly is looking to compile a ‘wall of fame’ honoring the men and women who have served as honorary grand marshals of the borough’s Labor Day Parade since 1961. The ...

Upcoming Events


Fri, February 23, 5:00 PM

South Plainfield

The Sacred Heart Lenten Fish Dinners


Sat, February 24, 8:00 AM

South Plainfield

Meet the Mayor at the Senior Center


Sat, February 24, 2:00 PM

South Plainfield

The Children’s March being shown at the South ...

Sat, February 24, 4:00 PM

American Legion, South Plainfield

Boy Scout Troop 207 Spaghetti Dinner

Food & Drink


Sat, February 24, 7:00 PM

South Plainfield

Night at the Races - Tricky Tray


Sun, February 25, 1:00 PM

South Plainfield

Open House 312 Elissa Court South Plainfield

Real Estate


Diegnan Bill Allowing Municipalities To Authorize Parking Authorities As Redevelopment Entity Now Law

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ – Legislation sponsored by Senator Patrick Diegnan to allow municipalities to authorize a parking authority as a redevelopment entity is now law.

“We know that smart redevelopment can help to revitalize areas within a town or city, but we have to make sure that municipalities have the flexibility to undertake projects in the most effective way,” said ...

South Plainfield: A Heart for Giving

South Plainfield received over two inches of rain this past weekend. Fortunately, Mother Nature has cooperated, and the precipitation was not of the frozen variety. Despite the rain, nothing could put a damper on South Plainfield’s spirit of helping those in need.

On Saturday a few Borough employees and I had the opportunity to deliver funds that have been raised for a family that has ...

Prayers the Devil Answers by Sharyn McCrumb

Prayers the Devil Answers by Sharyn McCrumb (Altria, 2015)


Years later, after the tragedy, someone remembered the Dumb Supper and what had happened there. That was the cause of it, they said, because the ritual wasn't a game after all. It really was magic, but magic has rules, and she broke them. Even when they call it a 'senseless tragedy,' people always try to find a ...


What, February is nearly over already?  No doubt you were just getting used to it.  So, before March arrives like the proverbial lion, let’s look at upcoming events at South Plainfield Library:

            With a couple of additions and one cancellation, we’ve got a usual slate of children’s programs next ...

Press Releases

Diegnan Announces State Funding For Road Project On Hadley Road

February 23, 2018

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ  – Senator Patrick Diegnan with New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) officials today announced $881,550 in state funding for the start of a project for improvements and paving work on Hadley Road in South Plainfield.

“As someone who is a lifelong resident of South Plainfield, I know how important Hadley Road is to our residents and local ...