West Orange

Overview

Located in Central Essex County, the suburban town of West Orange has a population of roughly 40,000 people. Known for mostly all of the activities you can do, West Orange has much to offer. If you are looking to go look at some animals, the Turtle Back Zoo is the place to be, if you want to go ice skating, even if it’s in the summer the year round South Mountain Arena (Cody Arena) is always open and has open skating daily. If you want to check out the historical side of West Orange, the Thomas Edison Museum/Historical Site is open daily for tours. If you are looking to be outside for a few hours West Orange is home to a few public parks and South Mountain Reservation. Or if you are just looking for a good place to eat, west orange has all types of cuisines.

Activities

Arts and Entertainment

One big thing that is located in West Orange, is the Thomas Edison Historical Park. Thomas Edison changed the World, and located in the heart of West Orange is a Historical Park where not only is it reasonably priced at $10 a person, you get to see all of Thomas Edison’s inventions and tools that he used to shape the future of the world. You don’t just go in and take a tour, they sit you down and give you a video to watch to help further your knowledge about what you are going to see throughout the park, the staff is very knowledgeable and a great time for family and friends.

The Turtle Back Zoo is slowly becoming one of the top attractions to check out in all of New Jersey. Throughout the years, the Turtle Back Zoo has added new exhibits to attract more and more people, yearly adding new animals, by 2018 they will have a lion exhibit, it is becoming a premier zoo in the tri state area. Priced under $10 a person, you can stay and check out the exhibits for as long as you want, you can even take your children on the train ride that goes through the woods past the giraffe exhibit and near other exhibits. Open 8 out of the 12 months, the Turtle Back Zoo has it all.

Codey Arena, also called South Mountain Arena, holds not only some of the New Jersey Devils skating practices, they hold ice hockey games, semi pro ice hockey games, and open ice skating to the public daily. Two NHL size arenas inside, they have a skate shop for all gear that you might need, rentals, arcade room and a concession stand. If you are looking to take the family out for a little skating fun, Codey Arena is the spot.

Essex Green Movie theater is one of the few movie theaters in New Jersey that you can wine and dine in and have reclining seats, for only about $14 dollars a ticket, you get a recliner seat, and waiter/waitress service during the movie, you can order drinks and dinner throughout the movie, before and after. (You have to be 21 years of age or older)

Parks and Recreation

If you are looking for one of the best spots to go hiking, West Orange has it, located right in West Orange, South Mountain Reservation has it all. From having over 6 trails to follow throughout the woods, you can make your own trail, but only one of those trails will lead you to the hidden waterfall located deep within the reservation.

If you just want to walk around the mile long pond or take a paddle boat out or even have a picnic, the paddle boating and picnic pavilion part of the South Mountain Reservation is the place to be, with over a dozen picnic tables and over 25 paddle boats on the pond, the South Mountain Reservation is a beautiful place to be once the weather starts to get nice out.

One of the best spots to see a beautiful scenic look into New York is located in West Orange. The Eagle Rock Reservation holds a beautiful 9/11 memorial that overlooks out to New York. Some days can get extremely crowded but you don’t want to miss this view, open 24 hours a day, if you want to spend some quality time with family and or friends and overlook into beautiful New York City, this is the spot.

Restaurants

West Orange is home to many kinds of foods. If you want a nice 4-5 star restaurant experience there are two places that you can go to, you have Mcloone’s Boathouse which is located right on the pond of the South Mountain Reservation. The other one that you can go to is the manor, which is more of a hotel style feel. Classic American Fine Dining. If you are looking for a good slice of pizza, Starlite is a great spot. Recently renovated and featured on “Makeover Food Network Edition” West Orange also has many other spots, fast food spots, Spanish, Chinese, Indian, any kind of cuisine you are looking for West Orange has.

Shopping

Located right where the Essex Green movie theater is in West Orange, the Essex Green Shopping Center is a place to go if you are looking for your grocery needs, if you are looking for your home furniture needs and even pet supplies. If you are looking for more of clothing shopping West Orange has a Macy’s Backstage, which is all of the older cloths of Macy’s knocked down in prices. If you are looking for a mall, Livingston Mall is roughly 10 minutes away and the more upscale Short Hills Mall is about 20 minutes away from West Orange.

Transportation

Coach and Decamp Bus lines run daily seven days a week through West Orange into New York City. There are also shuttle buses that will take you around West Orange if you did not have a car, or a ride.

If you need a train station, the closest ones are only minutes away in the neighboring towns or Orange and South Orange.

If you are looking for major Highways, West Orange is conveniently located near route 280 and the GSP or also known as the Garden State Parkway.

Jonathan Curcio

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