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An Expat Talks about Living in Peapack-Gladstone, New Jersey

What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?

Peapack-Gladstone

What activities, clubs and organizations would you recommend to newcomers to help them meet others?

Most people find some kind of club - private or otherwise - for tennis, golf or fitness. Most of these are outside of town actually. Mendham Village Racquet Club in nearby Mendham has tennis, racquetball and a great fitness center that tends NOT to have "obnoxious" meatheads. This is a public club that might be viewed as slightly expensive, but there are all kinds of people that go there and there is even an outdoor pool in the summer. There are also several private clubs in the surrounding towns. You can join the county golf course system and play for next to nothing, though it does get crowded. There are a lot of people that enjoy biking and running.

Also horseback riding is very popular in Peapack-Gladstone and the surrounding towns. Jackie Onassis even had a house in this town for many years that she used as a base for her horseback riding. The national Olympic equestrian team has its headquarts in Gladstone.

There are also several churches in town. These include St. Luke's Episcopal, United Methodist, the Reformed Church and St. Brigid's Catholic.

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In terms of religious, racial, economic and cultural diversity, are the people of this city or town diverse? Are they accepting of differences? Describe.

Peapack-Gladstone is not a very diverse community. However, there are some Latin Americans that have moved there over the course of the last several years. Most people are probably working professionals, but there is also a solid base of non-professionals that have successful businesses in construction, landscaping, painting. Many of these people do just as well as the white collar professionals.

What are the main industries in this city? What types of career opportunities commonly exist? How do most people find new jobs?

Many people commute to New York City, though there are a lot of corporations in the area. AT&T, Lucent, Merck, Avaya, Johnson & Johnson, Pharmacia and many other large corporations employ many of the people in the area. There are also small- to mid-size companies that offer a slight change of pace from corporate America. As I already noted, there are many people that work in the construction, decorating, landscaping and related fields that also do very, very well for themselves.

In general, what are peoples' priorities in this city? For example, do lives revolve around work, family, socializing, sports, etc.?

This is definitely a family oriented town. Most people are very hard working individuals, and there is not much at all for the single 20's crowd looking for fun on a Saturday night. There are several restaurants that are very good, including the new Opah Grill, which is supposed to be quite good. Chatfield's, an American grill with some other types of food mixed in, is probably the most popular. It has a bar and usually live music on the weekends. The entire area surrounding PG is very popular with bikers and runners, so many of the locals are very into fitness.

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If a friend of yours was thinking of moving to this city or town from far away, what other advice would you give them.

In a nutshell, I would say that Peapack-Gladstone is a very small town that is quiet and set up to remain that way. There isn't a lot going on in terms of excitement, but the locals like it that way. Crime is almost non-existant.

As it is such a small town, you should also know that you have to drive to other towns to go shopping for food, clothes and just about everything else. Great town for families.

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