Located in Somerset County in New Jersey is the borough of Raritan. Their motto is “A friendly town of friendly people” and is home to about 8,000 residents. The name Raritan is taken from a Native American group of Lenapes, called the Raritans. The name is said to mean “forked river” or “stream overflows.”
Raritan was originally a subdivision in Bridgewater township in 1868. In 1948, Raritan was allowed to become a borough due to a series of lawsuits between Raritan and Bridgewater.
Shopping & Dining
Located within Raritan is the Raritan Mall, with stores such as Stop & Shop, Liew Garden, Liquor Barn, and a number of specialty stores. Just outside of Raritan, you can find a great mix of retailers in the Somerville Circle Shopping Center. This mall features stores such as Staples, PC Richard, Petco, Toys “R” Us, along with Panera Bread, Mandee, 5 Below and others. And if your thing is fine jewelry, then look into Gold and Silver Refinery of Raritan, a gold, silver, and platinum buyer and dealer.
Raritan also has it's share of great places to eat. For those looking for great Italian food, Espo's has you covered. Espo's is known for it's old-fashioned red sauce and classic Italian food in a cozy space with a full bar. And if you're in the mood for seafood, then Uncle Vinnie's Clam Bar deserves a visit. Char Steak house also tops the list of great places to eat in Raritan. And top it all off with desert with some home made ice cream at As You Like It.
As of 2010, there were 6881 residents in Rarirtan, with 2673 households, with a median income of $70,000.
Parks & Recreation
The Flemington-Raritan Parks & Recreation is run by a joint committee made up of trustees, volunteers, and elected officials. They offer a number of programs that benefit local residents, such as after-school clubs and various sports leagues for children and adults.
Local parks include Blackwell Park, Mine Brook Park, Lenape Park, Lone Cedar Park & Nature Preserve, and Morales Nature Park. Each park offers something different, with provisions such as trails, playgrounds, baseball fields, and picnic pavillions.
The Bridgewater-Raritan Regional School District serves the student body of Raritan. There are around 8800 students attending the 11 schools in this district, of which about 1000 students live in Raritan. Only one of the schools in this district are actually within Raritan, namely Kennedy. The rest of the schools are located within Bridgewater. In 2000, Bridgewater-Raritan High School was given the highest award a school can receive from the federal Government, the National Blue Ribbon School Award of Excellence.
Another option for high school students is the Somerset County Vocational & Technical High School.
Commuters in Raritan have a number of ways to get around quickly. US Route 202, 206, and New Jersey Route 28 are a number of freeway options. For those traveling by train, the Raritan Train Station, located north of the town center on Thompson Street, offers New Jersey transit service.