WEST ORANGE, NJ — On its latest list of “The Nicest Places in Places in Every State,” Reader’s Digest named the Township of West Orange as the nicest place in New Jersey for 2018.
According to the list, the nicest places in America embody kindness and cooperation. It states that in each of these towns, “locals help out neighbors and strangers alike—and newcomers are welcomed as friends.”
“We have great neighbors, and I’ve met some of the nicest people I know right at my church,” West Orange resident Richard Prasad told Reader’s Digest.
In addressing why West Orange was a candidate for this year’s list, the publication noted that the township was home to astronauts Scott and Mark Kelly and inventor Thomas Edison among “many other notable and charitable people.” The Kelly twins were acknowledged for their participation in NASA’s “Twins Study,” which brought 10 research teams from around the country together to discover what happens to the human body after spending one year in space.
The article also states that West Orange is the birthplace of “Pleasant Valley Sunday,” a popular rock song written in 1967 by West Orange residents Carole King and Gerry Goffin and famously performed by the Monkees. Pleasant Valley Way, which runs through many communities including West Orange, served as King and Goffin’s inspiration for the song.
Reader's Digest picked the leading candidate in each state out of nominations made by readers.