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Reader says ,”The newer people will never believe that it was once possible to have a charming town”


“The newer people will never believe that it was once possible to have a charming town. One had all types of stores. One could buy reasonably priced clothing and the merchants even notified you if you had a child that needed special skinny sizes when they received a shipment you could use. You could walk into a hardware store with a handful of screws and say “I need more of these.” We had our own butcher shop which had great meats at reasonable prices–and hired Down’s syndrome individuals to keep it clean. We had a news, stationery, business supplies and gift shop where you could buy anything practical you needed. If we didn’t have it in Ridgewood, it probably was not made. Now we have a great selection of restaurants and not much else.”

21 thoughts on “Reader says ,”The newer people will never believe that it was once possible to have a charming town”

  1. I remember Ridgewood like that as well as many other of the surrounding towns. They had living, breathing downtowns but the big box stores and malls led to their demise. Now the powers that be seem to think we need a huge taxpayer subsidized parking garage for a town filled with restaurants. I call BS on this as it will serve residents and guests of the new poorly planned developments. I may have had to walk a few blocks on a Fri. or Sat. night but I have always been able to find parking to shop or dine in Ridgewood.

  2. Dear dinosaurs,
    Yes all very quaint and all but what’s transpiring around you is the movement of time. It’s 2019, not 1963. This is Ridgewood,not Mayberry. What makes you think as the world changes around us that Ridgewood Should be any different? Tell me how I can operate this “store”in your charming downtown and sell you your screws when my monthly rent is $9,000.00 triple net? Will you pay me $19.99 for each screw so I can keep my store open and you can sit on a bench in Garber Square and watch the world go by? Because that’s where we’re going …forward, not backward.

  3. It’s not a Ridgewood thing that we no longer have a downtown of butcher, bakers, and candlestick makers. Brick and mortar retail, anywhere, has been dying for years and is now dying at a very rapid rate. Next to wind things up are the banks, closely followed by pharmacies. This might not seem like much of a big deal to most, but these banks pump in a lot in the ways of rents, taxes, employment, and just a physical presence. What we are left with are the service businesses (hair/nail, cafes, & restaurants). The profit margins on these places is razor thin and it’s why they turn over frequently.

    No amount of increased parking is going to change anything.

  4. I agree with these posts. The WORLD is changing, not just Ridgewood. All of you who long for the old days are probably shopping on Amazon Prime. I bet you bought your grandchildren’s holiday gifts online, not at the toy store in Ridgewood that just closed. I bet some of you get your groceries delivered. And didn’t you just place an order on Lands rather than going to Fox’s or Talbots in Ridgewood? You can’t have it both ways. The old times of quaint downtowns are becoming a distant memory. The CBD is going to only be for activities like eating, hair styling, dancing classes, tae kwon do, art classes, dining, cafe lattes, ice cream, bubble tea, day spas, etc. It is not going to be for buying knick knacks, sweaters, greeting cards, and shoes. Who is supposed to be paying such high rents when no one is shopping in the stores? I wanted to buy a new suitcase. I went to the luggage store on the avenue. The price was SO MUCH higher than the same suitcase online. I hated to do it, but I ordered online. I am not made of money. This is the new reality.

  5. We had some great stores. Winchells, sealfons, mchughes, Bobby knapps, perdues, al and Harry’s , drapkins, 3 Hardware stores, lots of liquor stores, gas stations on every corner on Franklin. Unfortunately now the only places that can afford th rent are banks and restaurants

  6. Some of your people think the village originally great this time is overrated. There are so many other towns around us. That is better. Some of you people need to get your head out of your ass.

  7. To dear dinosaurs… you hit the nail on the head… the luddites do not realize that both elder and younger residents are moving not because of change but because of the delusional obstructionists who have this twisted idea that this “quaint village” should be a 20th century museum dedicated to white suburbia.

  8. Blame should go heavily to the developers ie landlords in town as well

  9. Hey Overrated, nice grammar!

  10. How do you actually put your head into your ass? Just wondering.

  11. Yes listen pesmith you are a racist if you want to live in a nice town

  12. There were far more “people of color ” in Ridgewood in the 60s and 70s ,80s than now

  13. It takes a racist to want to live in a nice town?

  14. I was unaware of the decline in black residents. I knew there was a large increase of white families adopting a black child but didn’t really notice that black mothers and fathers were declining. This is very unfortunate as the mingling in the schools and activities of all races is part of what Ridgewood so distinctive. I co-led a Girl Scout Troop with an amazing black mother and really thought nothing of it. Years ago we “lost” a pair of visiting Japanese students when they told a teacher at a school dance–where they had unfortunately been deserted by their host students– that they needed to leave because the girl was not feeling well and he didn’t recognize them as “visitors” and just told them they could leave. Naturally they got lost and we had practically the whole town searching for them. I believe that even now Ridgewood still has the largest amount of racial disparity than any other local school or district. I sincerely hope that we have few racists in our town.

  15. Hey overrated? Sounds like you have an inferiority complex. How’s life in waldwick .? What’s your downtown ? A clock at Rite-aid lol? Don’t be jealous all your life .

  16. Paul Smith has written numerous racist comments here and on FB. For example, when he wrote (and I quote directly):

    Well all I know after all this there’s way too many white people that need a new hobby in the quaint village that should be renamed chez whitey.” I have a screen shot of this, but you cannot past into comments here on The Blog.

    Paul looks like he is white, but who knows, maybe he is a self-hater. His rhetoric is very nasty. His house is on the market, hoping he will move far away.

  17. Hey pecist I got news for you. This town has more diversity within its residents than most but you obviously don’t live here and probably can’t afford it. How’s life in Paterson .? Btw did you steal my bicycle a few years back?

  18. Agree to call BS ON the apologists for the Garagezilla Hunta

  19. Some of Ridgewood’s most prominent involved citizens have darker skin, and they are greatly admired and appreciated.

  20. Paul Smith is a good friend of Roberta Sonenfeld. What more do you need to know?

  21. Thanks Chris, hopefully soon ! God bless.

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