My Block: Which Block Is The Best In Montclair?
Residents talk about why Montclair Avenue is the best block in Montclair.
Want just one sign of how popular Montclair Avenue is? Residents say they need a minimum of 500 pieces of candy to hand out each Halloween. And, depending on the year, they sometimes need twice that amount.
The wide tree-lined street has always been a draw for trick-or-treaters. Not only is the block full of families, but one resident is known for handing out Scholastic books each year.
In general, though, residents here say they have fun not only in October but all year long.
"There are always kids playing outside in the street, everyone waves to say hello, and my kids have plenty of friends to knock for at the weekend," said Helen Torris, who moved from England to Montclair two years ago.
Neighbor Lourdes Andrews echoes those sentiments, "there's a feeling of having a safety net here in that we all watch over each other and over each other's kids."
The stretch of Montclair Avenue between Columbus Avenue and McDonough Street is home not only to a giant Halloween celebration, but also to an annual pig roast, Easter egg hunt, gingerbread decorating evening, and end-of-summer backyard potluck.
In addition, there are girls' nights out that sometimes don't end until 2:30 a.m.
Sara Rosenheck moved to Montclair Avenue from Park Slope three years ago.
"My best friends all live on this block," she said. "We are all like a big family around here."
Joanne Aidala has lived on Montclair Avenue for 20 years.
"We moved here from the city when we had a 2 1/2 year old," she said. "It's incredible but my daughter got here and said she loved the house and loved New Jersey. When I asked her why, she said 'because there's a moon.' We couldn't see the moon in the city."
Aidala and the others say they don't generally host one big splashy event each year—but a whole host of smaller events that play out throughout the year.
"We're not focused on one big thing," Aidala said. "We have fun on a daily basis."
Check out the video to find out more about why Montclair Avenue is so special.
In 2010, Patch published a regular series titled "My Block." The goal was to find out why you believe your block is the most fabulous in town. In our inaugural segment, we heard about Inwood Avenue. Then Midland Avenue. Then Summit Avenue. High Street. Trinity Place. Oakwood Avenue. Macopin Avenue. Then the neighborhood known as "Fieldstone." Then Edgemont Road. Then we had Andrea DelleChiaie, the owner of Milk Money, and her neighbors talk about why their street, Chester Road, is the best place to live. And we heard from Susan Kaufmann about Grandview Place and several residents about Plymouth Street. That series was so much fun we thought we'd do it again—starting with Midland Avenue, followed by Madison Avenue last week.
If you think your block is great, either comment or shoot me an email at Shelley@patch.com and we'll come out and talk to you and your neighbors about what makes your street special.