The attractive areas of Chatham Borough neighboring Chatham Township share a common heritage and are often referred to as Chatham, or The Chathams. Chatham has been named one of the top ten places to live in the United States by Money Magazine!
Families moving to the Chathams often tell me that the area’s biggest draw is the very high standards of the schools. Parents here place a high value on education, resulting in one of the most outstanding systems in the area. Schools in both Chatham Township and Chatham Borough come under the administration of the School District of the Chathams, supported by a very active group of parents and community members in the Chatham Education Foundation. Since their inception in 1997 they have raised over $300,000 to enhance Chatham's schools.
Chatham High School was recently recognized with a Blue Ribbon Award of Excellence, the highest award conferred on schools by the US Department of Education. It was ranked 8th among New Jersey’s 322 public schools by New Jersey Monthly magazine in 2010. The school strives to meet the educational needs of every child with a carefully tailored curriculum which includes 18 or so AP courses as well as providing support for children with special needs. Students excel outside the classroom too – Chatham High School has an award winning marching band, a lively theatre program and top of the league teams in basketball, tennis, cross-country and soccer.
One unique feature of the Chatham Middle School is the way each grade is divided into "houses," creating a smaller, more intimate atmosphere. There are four elementary schools: kids go to Milton Avenue, Southern Boulevard, or Washington Avenue from kindergarten to grade 3 and then on toLafayette School for the final two years of their elementary education.
Chatham kids love the summer camps run by the Work Family Connection.
You can continue learning when schooldays are long gone at the Adult School, which offers a huge variety of classes in everything from arts and crafts, through to challenging courses on business and legal issues.
Beautiful homes, plenty of space, fabulous amenities and only 25 miles from New York City – is it any wonder Chatham is so popular with commuters? Chatham Station is on New Jersey Transit’s Morristown Line with a Midtown Direct commuter service reaching New York Penn Station in as little as 46 minutes. There are direct trains into Hoboken, too. Most homes in Chatham Borough are within walking distance of the Chatham train station, and there are free bike racks there. Residents can apply for parking permits from Chatham Borough for the lots next to the station on Fairmount Avenue and Railroad Plaza and along Bond Street and Fairmount Avenue. They cost around $350 a year.
There is metered parking, too, for $5.00 per day. Chatham is just off exit 7 of Route 24, providing easy access to I-78 and I-287, and the New Jersey Turnpike, the Garden State Parkway and Route 280 are all within 10-15 minutes. Newark Liberty Airport, a major continental and international gateway, is just a 20 minute drive away. New Jersey Transit’s MCM-3 bus runs through Chatham between Livingston Mall, Short Hills Mall, Madison, Morristown, Morris Plains and Greystone Park.
Data compiled from the GSMLS. Deemed reliable, but not guaranteed. Sue feels that if you are in the market to buy or sell real estate in Chatham, it is important to understand the trends in Active Listings, Days on the Market, and Listing to Sale Price ratio so that you can make an educated decision
|66 Summit Ave||$349,000||$349,000||$354,000||3||2||Ranch||101%||36|
|1 Girard Ave||$375,000||$375,000||$365,000||3||2||Ranch||97%||132|
|55 Hedges Ave||$545,000||$545,000||$525,000||3||1.1||Colonial||96%||23|
|83 Watchung Ave||$649,900||$575,000||$550,000||3||2.1||Colonial||85%||91|
|30 N Hillside Ave||$649,000||$599,000||$505,000||4||1.1||Colonial||78%||74|
|51 Garden Avenue||$775,000||$775,000||$750,000||4||2.1||Colonial||97%||23|
|57 Fuller Ave||$1,070,000||$1,070,000||$1,027,866||4||2.1||Colonial||96%||7|
|12 Woods Ln||$1,195,000||$1,195,000||$1,195,000||4||3.1||Custom||100%||32|
|8 Girard Ave||$1,198,000||$1,198,000||$1,198,000||4||3||Colonial||100%||29|
|22 Highland Ave||$1,279,000||$1,199,000||$1,050,000||3||2.2||Colonial||82%||28|
|6 Inwood Cir||$1,475,000||$1,325,000||$1,297,888||4||3.1||Colonial||88%||83|
|25C Heritage Dr||$315,000||$315,000||$312,500||2||1||OneFloor||99%||35|
|17C Heritage Dr||$359,000||$349,000||$335,000||2||2||OneFloor||93%||33|
|782 River Rd||$459,000||$459,000||$440,000||4||3||Colonial||96%||49|
|195 Riveredge Dr||$519,000||$519,000||$519,000||3||3||MultiFlr||100%||17|
|221 Longwood Ave||$679,000||$665,000||$640,000||3||1||Ranch||94%||149|
|55 Susan Dr||$879,000||$749,000||$705,000||4||2.1||Colonial||80%||117|
|38 Van Houton Ave||$995,000||$938,000||$898,000||4||3||Custom||90%||63|
|7 Thornley Dr||$1,295,000||$1,295,000||$1,345,000||4||2.1||Colonial||104%||12|
The intimate Chatham Cinema over at the Hickory Tree Shopping Center on Shunpike Road only has one screen but enjoys a reputation for showing the best movies on release. The Chatham Community Players have been entertaining residents of Morris County and the surrounding area since 1922 and stage shows at the Chatham Playhouse on North Passaic Avenue. The Chatham Community Band gives around 10 performances a year and has weekly practice sessions. In addition there are outstanding cultural facilities and programs available at the neighboring Drew and Fairleigh Dickinson universities.
Chatham has a wealth of wide open spaces where you can really tune in with nature at its unspoiled best. The Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge is one of the largest National Wildlife Refuges ever created so close to anurban center. As you trek through some of the nine miles of trails and boardwalks that weave through the 7,600 acre refuge, it is easy to forget that Times Square is only 26 miles away! The refuge is a resting and feeding area for more than 244 species of birds. Fox, deer, muskrat, turtles, fish, frogs and a wide variety of wildflowers and plants also call the refuge home. The Great Swamp Outdoor Education Center runs numerous special events and programs where visitors can learn about this living, breathing botanical and zoological resource. You can even hold birthday parties there as well. Great Swamp is open every day of the year during daylight hours.
Another awesome natural resource in Chatham is the Passaic River Country Park and Reservation. A total of 769 acres including more than 5,000 ft. of shoreline is open for leisurely hiking, picnicking, softball, fishing, ice skating and cross country skiing. Chatham offers plenty of playgrounds and picnic areas too, including those at Sheppard Kollock Park, located off Parrott Mill Road; Memorial Park, off North Passaic Avenue; Shunpike Castle Playground, Garden Park, next to Chatham Middle School off Main Street; and Stanley Park on River Road next to the Passaic River
If the vast expanse of natural reservation and parks was not enough, there are dozens of sporting fields in Chatham. The Borough and the Township have joined as Chatham Recreation, offering activities like baseball, basketball, tennis, lacrosse, softball, hockey, football, volleyball and swimming. Residents can register online for a community pass which gives access to these excellent facilities. The Chatham Borough Recreation offers golf permits to the Millburn Par 3 Golf Course and continues to administer the Borough owned tennis courts, municipal pool, playgrounds and parks. Chatham Township runs Mountainview Field and Gym, near the Township Municipal building on Meyersville Road, as well as the Colony Recreation Center - a large swimming pool, six tennis courts, two paddle tennis courts, a playground and recreational area.
Additional tennis courts are at the Noe Pond Club on Southern Boulevard. Chatham Skate Park on Southern Boulevard is a cool spot for teenagers to hang out – and it's right across the road from the police station! Tennis is big in this area, and there’s plenty of opportunities to practice or get in a game at local clubs. For 3-8 year olds there is Ad-In Kids Tennis. Also check out the Minisink Club, Copper Springs tennis club and Chatham Fish and Game Club (founded in 1891) where there’s also swimming and bowling. United Soccer Academy and McLoughlin Soccer are top of the league training venues for budding players, and for fancy footwork of a different kind, both adults and kids should point their toes in the direction of Dance Innovations.
If you would rather work out in a gym, The Chatham Club has state of the art facilities for squash, fitness training, pilates, massages, and even karate and fencing. You can also check out the Fitness Club in Chatham. Brooklake Country Club and Fairmount Country Club are convivial spots for golf, recreation and socializing.
Chatham has grown into something of a Mecca for gourmets in recent years, with a dazzling array of excellent new restaurants and plenty of tried and tested old favourites too. The town may be small, but it boasts not one, but two restaurants among Zagat’s top picks.
“Fabulous from start to finish,” and “breathtaking food and an incredible wine list,” is how Zagat has described Restaurant Serenade, whose French influenced cuisine certainly hits the high notes. There’s usually a three course prix fixe, or for those occasions when you really want to push the boat out, try the five-course tasting menu. The Zagat Survey rates Scalini Fedeli as “no.1 Italian” and it is among Gourmet Magazine’s top 100 restaurants in the country. With gilt-edged reviews like that you can imagine that both are top destinations for romantic meals and special occasions – and it pays to make an early reservation.
Supper is one of the newest restaurants on the Main Street, and fast gaining a reputation for its fabulous bistro-style cooking and relaxed atmosphere. Further down Main Street, sumptuous desserts and fine coffees are the order of the day at Cafe Beethoven, a perfect place to meet for an alfresco weekday lunch during the summer – and with live music on Thursday through Saturday.
Chatham Sandwich Shop is a local institution, renowned for its fabulous subs, and we just love having a quick bite on stools at the counter of the Best Little Luncheonette, which feels like it hasn’t changed since the 1950s. Over on Shunpike Road, The Hickory Tree Deli is said to produce the best triple decker sloppy Joes in New Jersey. The homemade soups and famous steakburgers at Charley's Aunt Restaurant on South Passaic Avenue hits the spot with kids. On Main Street, Danielle's An Italian Bistro, Arminio's Italian Corner (which also does great take-out pizza) and the Bean Curd Chinese restaurant (also fabulous take-out) are all very child friendly places on Main Street, while the dreamy homemade ice cream, yogurt and cakes at Gabriella’s set every mouth watering. For a taste of the orient on Main Street, head for the New Main Taste Thai restaurant and Mitsuba, where the fresh sushi and delicious lunch boxes are legendary.
Don’t be fooled by the old-world allure of Chatham’s downtown shopping district. Under that carefully preserved clapperboard and gingham exterior beats a heart that is right in sync with the latest trends! Soak up the atmosphere as you stroll down Main Street, picking up designer fashions, gorgeous gifts, accessories and home wares. Moms from miles around make a beeline for the exquisite children’s items – from clothes and layettes to toys, furniture and strollers – at Bibi’s Babywear. The next stop is Bliss Boutique, to find the hottest clothes and accessories around. There’s a fabulous selection of flatware, crystal, china and jewellery at the Windsor Gift Shop, and if it's sporting gear you are looking for you are sure to find it at either the 30-Love Tennis Boutique on North Passaic Avenue or at the Chatham Sports Shop on Main Street.
Out of the center of town along Shunpike Road is where you will find the Hickory Tree Shopping Center and Chatham Mall, with a variety of stores and supermarkets that cater for those everyday essentials. People travel for miles to pick up a box of the famous freshly baked crumb buns from the Woodland Bakery there. The Chatham Farmers’ Market sets out its stalls next to the railroad station every Saturday morning, rain or shine, from June to the end of October, where you can sample and buy fresh produce and flowers, cheese, pickles and olives, baked goods and dishes prepared by an organic chef. And don’t forget that more designer labels and big store names are just a five minute drive away at the Short Hills Mall.