Millburn Tennis = Tennis Heaven

MTO_Tennis_BallMillburn tennis isn’t just a sport—it’s a way of life. And this isn’t just because the Millburn High School boys’ tennis team has won the last three NJ Tournament of Champions titles, and just beat Princeton 5-0 in the Group III NJ State Championship (we’re not at all bragging here, guys). It’s because of the tremendous Millburn tennis community here. There are the beautiful and well-kept public courts at Taylor Park, the competitive yet supportive leagues at Center Court in Chatham, and the West Orange Tennis Club.

Listen, Millburn tennis isn’t just about winning (though clearly we are great at that). It’s about building community, and getting to know your neighbors. Parents, there are so many opportunities, such as the Chatham Tennis Camps, to get your children involved and make friends with other kids. There are so many ways for adults to take a break from their work and enjoy the beautiful sunshine over some doubles or round robin singles. Millburn tennis brings people together.

Brooklynites: really, what are you doing sitting there with your racket in your hand, waiting for those people who just won’t get off your court at Prospect Park or in Central Park, sometimes after you’ve reserved the court weeks in advance? Let’s face it: Brooklyn is no place to be a tennis player. Do yourself a favor. Get your racket and your tennis bag, a fresh can of Wilson balls, and come over to our courts (conveniently located right near a beautiful Millburn home). It’s Millburn tennis: we’ll have a court ready for you when you get here.

Maplewood NJ Real Estate Owners Can Use a 3D Printer at the Library

Maplewood NJ real estate owners use the 3D printer.Scoping out Maplewood NJ homes with the little ones on your quest to secure Maplewood NJ real estate? Come to Maplewood Memorial Library located at 51 Baker Street, where Create Space happens every Tuesday from 4pm to 8pm and Thursday from 6pm to 8pm. Patrons can create fun cards, games and whatever their imagination devises using Maplewood library’s Rhino 3D software, 3D printer and new color printer. Click here to learn more about this program.

Besides designing cool 3D objects, Maplewood Memorial Library is a terrific place to read, study and learn about the local community. To help you in conducting your research into whether your family should invest in Maplewood NJ real estate, you can access the library’s Digital Archive of the News-Record, which contains issues of Maplewood’s local weekly newspaper dating back to 1915. Check out how the local community has grown and progressed over the years!

The library website also has a special blog called Reader’s Place, where new books – especially non-fiction works – are reviewed by Maplewood librarians. The library also publishes summer readings lists for local school children and posts links to helpful resources for Advanced Placement students and children struggling with math.

Depending on the demand, printer times and printing wait can fluctuate. For the library printer policy, click here. Contact 3Dprinter@maplewoodlibrary.org with additional questions.

LIVE in Maplewood NJ MayFest 2015

Live in Maplewood NJ and go to MayFest.Families living in Maplewood NJ homes are all looking forward to MayFest 2015 hosted by the Springfield Avenue Partnership. For those who live in Maplewood NJ this old fashioned street fair event is an annual highlight of the season. On Sunday, May 24th, vendors, food, and kids activities will be taking over Springfield Avenue for one of the most fun family days of the year. Local bands will provide live music for hours, and there will even be performances from the local dance and exercise studios! For many of those who live in Maplewood NJ, Springfield Avenue is just a short walk from home. For those who will be looking for parking there are four municipal lots with plenty of available parking.

There will be performances on three separate stages this year, and with something for everyone, the MayFest is sure to be a hit with the entire family. A Bose Soundlink Bluetooth Speaker is going to be raffled off, and those who are interested will be dropping off their forms between 11:00am and 5:00pm during the Mayfest. To find out more about the Springfield Avenue Partnership and this year’s MayFest Street Fair, or to download your form for the raffle, visit the event’s webpage by clicking here.

How to Shop at the Short Hills NJ Mall

Short Hills Mall Robin BenjaminStep One: Before shopping in the Short Hills NJ Mall, get something to eat. Because who knows how cute that Juicy Couture shirt will look when you’re light-headed and dizzy? Get the Rainbow Trout at Legal Sea Foods or the Ahi Tuna Salad at Joe’s American Bar and Grill. Trust me. Your closet will thank you later.

Step Two: Nordstrom’s. Go to the sales rack and see what they’ve got going on. Even if you don’t buy anything there, it will be a sensory experience, so you can figure out what you would like to buy somewhere else.

Step Three: Get artsy with Anthropologie. Get French with Lacoste. Get sexy with Victoria’s Secret. Get down-to-earth with J. Crew. Don’t get what you need. Get what you love. Take pictures of yourself with your new clothes on and tell yourself, “I deserve this. I’ve worked hard.”

Step Four: Plug into the Short Hills NJ Mall’s Free WIFI and upload the pictures of you in your new clothes to your Instagram account. Don’t wait to see how many “likes” you get. Your fun isn’t over yet.

Step Five: Carry your bags over to Aveda and get a complimentary facial. Because, well, you can (free facials from May 2-May 24th).

Step Five: Stop at Forty Carrots and get a frozen yogurt. See how many likes those Instagram uploads got you.

Step Six: Take a deep breath and say to yourself, “Thank goodness I live in Short Hills NJ.”

Step Seven (if you don’t live in Short Hills NJ): What are you doing? Buy yourself a Short Hills NJ home pronto!

Step Eight: Contact Robin Benjamin, the most dependable and knowledgeable realtor that Short Hills NJ has (then go back to the top and repeat steps 1-6).

Short Hills Realtor Profile: Robin Benjamin

Robin BenjaminHere’s an incomplete list of the things that Short Hills Realtor Robin Benjamin loves:

Sushi

Roger Federer

Her dog, Bailey

Competitive Tennis although it’s been a while

Family

House of Cards

Helping People Find Their Dream Home

Wait a second, what was that last one? You mean to say that Robin Benjamin actually works for both the seller, and the buyer? Well, what a novel concept. And in this situation, it’s 100% true. There’s no other Short Hills realtor who gives so much for her clients, whether they’re looking for their dream Short-Hills home, or looking to sell and re-locate. Robin Benjamin understands that longevity in real estate doesn’t come from making the most out of that one sale. It comes from cultivating genuine relationships, from being there for people as much as she can, and doing her best to ensure they get the most out of their investment. That’s what ensures that clients keep coming back, and spread the word on how great she is.

But also because this Short Hills realtor has a family of her own. Because she knows what it’s like to support loved ones and to work hard for her money. Because she’s not only familiar with this area, having worked in towns along the Midtown Direct Train Line for eighteen years, she’s also lived here, and had three children who grew up here. She loves Millburn, Short Hills, Summit and all the surrounding towns, and invites you to love it too.

And what does she ask in return (besides commission, but hey, nothing is free in this world)? Stop by during one of those tennis games. Have a glass of malbec at the Boxcar. When you see her in Greenwood Gardens with her family, and her dog, Bailey, say hi. Tell her about the new sushi restaurant that just opened up (but don’t spoil the season finale of House of Cards!).

Millburn High School: Smart and Sporty

Millburn High School

Millburn High School

A recent article in The Patch said that Millburn High School was “challenging”, and thank God. Facts: a challenging high school has challenging classes like: Funny Business: Humor and Satire in Literature and Film, AP Economics, Business Law, and Astrophysics, which push your children to learn more, do more, grow more. A challenging high school has challenging teachers who went to schools like Columbia, Harvard, and Yale, who motivate and inspire your child, but also instill in them their experience of high achievement, which prepares your child for the future. A challenging institution like Millburn High School routinely produces students who achieve high scores on AP exams, go on to prestigious universities, and who win robotics competitions. All the while having every major sport from football, baseball and wrestling, to tennis, golf, lacrosse, and fencing (because smart and sporty is a nasty combination).

Wait a second, Astrophysics and Business Law? Can we stop and remember that this is a public high school? As in, free. As in, your child gets a top-notch education just because you live in the town (makes buying a Millburn home seem like a good idea, eh?)? Another fact: U.S News and World Report ranked Millburn High School the fourth best in New Jersey and 2015 NICHE rankings just released The Best High School Teachers in New York City Metro Area and Millburn High School received a overall grade of A+ ranking in the TOP 3.

The bottom line is this: you put your kid in Millburn High School and the expansiveness of the curriculum will get the best out of them, nurture them, support them, all the while allowing them to make mistakes and learn things about themselves. Putting your kid in Millburn High School will pave the way for a bright future. Now, how is that a bad thing?

Maplewood Home: It’s the Tree of Life

Maplewood TreesBrooklynites: are you thinking about buying a Maplewood home, but you’re not sure yet? Next question: do you like trees? Do you go to Brooklyn Botanic Garden and Prospect Park and bask in the sun while push your stroller on Sunday afternoons? And while you’re pushing your stroller, do you think to yourself, “I wish I could have this everyday, and not just Sunday . . .” Well, think about this.

Let’s break down the name of the town, Maplewood. First word: Maple. A type of tree. Second part: wood, the stuff that trees are made of. And does Maplewood deliver on its name? Absolutely. There are: Norway and silver maples, Scotch maples, flowering cherry, honey and black locust, magnolias, pin oak, and buttonwood. Just to name a few. So, if you like trees, nature, walking around gorgeous, bucolic parks, yet still want the advantages of the urban lifestyle with booming arts and culture, and an outstanding school system, then a Maplewood home is the direct fulfillment of all those needs. Don’t just take The New York Times’ word for it. Take a look for yourself. Walk around the tree-lined streets, and wander into Memorial Park where you’ll bask in the twenty-five acres of serenity.

Brooklyn: springtime is here. The flowers are blooming. Love is in the air. There’s no better time to make the jump to Maplewood, the place that is literally made of trees.

Waiving Your Appraisal On Your Home In Maplewood NJ

468px-ShakespeareThe famous Maplewood resident, William Shakespeare, once said, prior to buying a home in Maplewood, “To waive or not to waive the appraisal contingency in Maplewood—that is the question.” And William (or Willy as the guys at the deli called him) pondered this for years. What if the appraisal is low? Or, what if the appraisal is wrong? Because he wasn’t using the top real estate agent in Maplewood, he kept losing in bidding wars. Evidently he was busy writing some histories and tragedies, and some sonnets, to seek out sound real estate advice. What a sucker.

It could have been so simple. The truth is, appraisers make mistakes. We all make mistakes. Something as simple as marking off the wrong amount of bedrooms or baths, an incorrect lot size or home square footage, are all things that could throw off an appraisal. So, you ask for a new one. The second option is the price could be reduced to the appraised value and the sale moves on. Or, the buyers put more money in escrow. Lastly, buyers and sellers split it down the middle.

But you don’t have to go down that route, whether you’re a buyer or a seller. Because there are people who can council you, who know the market and what a home in Maplewood actually cost, who have done all of the analysis, and know the ins and outs of real estate in Maplewood. There is Robin Benjamin, the top real estate agent in Maplewood. So, there’s no reason to let a great deal go afoul (Willy’s favorite word) because of an appraisal. We shan’t allow it. We shan’t!

Look, sellers are people. Buyers are people. Even lenders are people (kind of), and as people we can communicate our needs, wants, desires, and not lose great deals and dream homes because of a house being appraised incorrectly. We don’t have to waste everyone’s time and money, and we can get to the business, whether that’s doing the appraisal or not. But listen to her. She knows. The top real estate agent in Maplewood can help you, by communicating and telling the truth of what a home in Maplewood costs, and what a good deal is. We’re all people, and Robin Benjamin works on both sides, seller and buyer.

Sit back, relax, and enjoy the good life. “Living in Maplewood,” as Shakespeare said, is “such stuff as dreams are made on.”

Community Music Near Your Maplewood Home

Go to the concert near your Maplewood home.One of the best reasons to own a Maplewood home is the wonderful community here. People love to come together to collaborate and share their talents with everyone who lives here. On Saturday, April 11th, Maplewood Community Music is presenting a free children’s concert. Come hear “Winds and Brass and Drums–Oh My!” The concert will feature the talents of the Maplewood Community Concert Band and the Maplewood Middle School 8th Grade Wind Ensemble. This is a great way to introduce the children in your Maplewood home to quality music. Bring them to the Maplewood Middle School Auditorium at 7 Burnet Street on Saturday April 11th at 2 p.m.

The concert is designed to help audience members learn more about the instruments in the band. The selections of music will highlight individual sections. This is a perfect opportunity to inspire children (and adults, too!) to take up an instrument that interests them. It’s also a good opportunity to inspire beginning musicians to keep practicing.

Maplewood Community Music is an organization dedicated to bringing the community together by sharing excellent music. The Community Concert Band, under the direction of Steve Kimmons, presents concerts for the community throughout the year. Maplewood real estate owners can learn more about this Saturday’s concert and more upcoming concerts at maplewoodcommunitymusic.org.

Llamas, Goats and Pigs-Living in Millburn Street Fair

3921463709_fca7a930d6_z

Photograph via Flickr by Pete Markham

Let’s face it. We could all go for petting a llama at the end of our busy work week living in Millburn. And at the Millburn Street Fair on Sunday, April 19th from 11AM-5PM, you can do just that. They’ll have llamas, goats, pigs, rabbits, and guinea pigs for you to pet, and plenty of babies and cute kids running around too. You know why? Because everyone loves llamas. That’s why.

If petting a llama isn’t enough (though, how could that be possible?), there’s also an all day dance party, live theater from the world renowned Papermill Playhouse, delicious international foods, as well as live music, pony rides, games, rides, clowns and jugglers. And right now, you’re   asking, “Sounds great, but how much does it cost?”

It’s free. Totally free. Even the parking is free in municipal lots. All you have to do is go there and have the time of your life, and you know how great you are at that.

Now, let’s take a second and reflect and how amazing Millburn is. There’s the Blue Ribbon public high school, which is one of the best public schools in New Jersey, beautiful and majestic Millburn homes, and now, llamas and dance parties. It’s a wonderful thing that the people of this community come together and enjoy each other’s company. What a way to kick-off the spring season.

Really, this is a dream place to live.

Now, if only there was an honest and dependable realtor selling properties there . . .