Photo credit: Pompton Lakes Historic Commission Caption: Pompton Lakes original charter document
By Steve Sears
The Borough of Pompton Lakes in 2020 is celebrating its 125th anniversary.
The borough was officially established on February 26, 1895, and much celebratory activity is being planned for a year-long party.
Laura Jennings, Pompton Lakes Historic Commission Chairwoman, explains what is thus far planned. “This Historic Commission is coordinating a town-wide event at Hershfield Park on July 25 commemorating our 125-year anniversary. Local vendors and other groups in town are invited to participate.” Those wishing to participate are invited to contact firstname.lastname@example.org. “In addition,” Jennings continues, “we are partnering with the Passaic County Office of Cultural and Historic Affairs, and the Friends of the Pompton Lakes Public Library, to offer a series of events throughout the year.” Information will be posted on the borough website as dates are announced.
Ekamon Venin, Council President for the Borough of Pompton Lakes, says the Historic Commission is working closely with the town administrators and Mayor Michael Serra and the Borough Council to successfully plan the schedule. “Our first walking tour is scheduled for April 4th, town picnic celebration is July 25th, and other dates will be announced as those plans unfold.” Venin also states that the 25th (of July) is “really the biggest piece of the puzzle.” Input from the community is encouraged. “If you are looking to volunteer your time, showcase your local business or have a family friendly activity to offer, we want to hear from you,” says Venin enthusiastically. “We are using the hashtag #PomptonLakes125 to share the event on social media.”
Pompton Lakes has quite a background. Jennings elaborates. “Some interesting local history is that Pompton Lakes was home to Reaction Motors, which is arguably where the National Space Program got its start. In addition, (boxer) Joe Lewis trained here and loved the town so much that he hosted a fundraiser to help Pompton Lakes purchase the town’s very first ambulance.” The Pompton Lakes First Aid Squad, comprised of volunteers, is still in operation today. “Which brings us to our most significant contribution to Passaic County and New Jersey – camaraderie, family togetherness and a sense of community are all hallmarks of Pompton Lakes,” adds Jennings. “Pompton Lakes is a community modeling the very core of the American dream here in our beloved Passaic County. Our pride in being citizen-centered reflects the true ideals of democracy and active citizenship in a diverse county of many people seeking to create and build new stories for future generations as a county of committed people.”
Mayor Serra offers his thoughts regarding the 125th anniversary. “We are very proud of our 125th anniversary celebration. Myself and our residents enjoy the rich history that Pompton Lakes offers. Our celebration will offer many visual as well as historical stories related to Pompton Lakes residents in the last century. Having a long history is one of the many highlights that makes Pompton Lakes a great place to live and raise a family.”
General Borough of Pompton Lakes and 125th anniversary information can be found at www.pomptonlakes-nj.gov.