Vote In The Hot Town Showdown

The Hot Towns Showdown presented by Kings Food Markets pits 16 sizzling towns against each other in a competition that’s sure to fire up lots of debate.

The Championship Round has ended. The winner will be announced Tuesday, September 26 at noon.

It all comes down to this. After weeks of heated battle, South Orange and New Providence will square off in the Championship Round of the Hot Town Showdown, presented by Kings Food Markets.

South Orange, which defeated Weehawken in Round Three, boasts diverse architecture, historic landmarks and more than 1,400 gaslight lanterns, which give the Essex County village ample character. In addition, residents and visitors enjoy a lively downtown bustling with shops and entertainment.

New Providence edged out Cranbury to advance to the final. The Union County town has grown a lot in the past few years. Residents revel in the small-town charm, easy access to public transit, and the abundant parkland.

The bracket-style competition started with 16 contenders on August 29. New Jersey Monthly picked the 16 towns in the competition based on factors like rising home prices, and time spent on the market when homes are up for sale. We also sought input from real-estate professionals—and we listened to the “buzz” in the marketplace. Each week throughout September, we cut the field in half, based on your votes.

Who will be named the Hottest Town in New Jersey. You decide! Vote now!

Make sure to vote for your favorites each week.

To become eligible to win one of three $50 gift certificates from Kings Food Markets, please enter your information below.

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  1. DoctorWhiteface

    You forgot Parsippany!

  2. RJHNJ001

    Sorry. You missed the boat. Cranford should have been in the running. It exceeds all the towns listed. Biased, yes. But true. It should have been there.

  3. Kate Honish

    Morris Township is the perfect place to raise a family. So many conveniences and a well run municipality! Love it here.

  4. Jamie Elizabeth Rinaldi

    How do I vote? There is nothing to click.

  5. Aref Assaf

    Denville Rocks.

  6. Sheena Collum

    South Orange all the way! Home to the South Orange Performing Arts Center, Seton Hall University, 10th busiest train line in the state with a 30 minute commute to the city, and a thriving downtown. We’re the Live Music Capital of North Jersey with over 100 musical performances during this past summer alone. A proud Sanctuary City, the first town to conduct a civil union and gay marriage (also raised a transgender flag last month), integrated neighborhoods, great schools, political and civic activism at its finest and our slogan #EverybodyBelongsHere. The brick and mortar is beautiful but the community of South Orange is what really makes the town shine. I clearly voted. Good luck to the Final 8.

    • respectfully disagree

      As much as I love SO, the downtown isn’t thriving…there are empty shops, restaurants that struggle to make ends meet because they can’t get a liquor license, and some wacky town plans that aren’t going to help manners. In addition, Columbia HS has a 5/10 ranking on Great Schools and SO Middle has a 6/10, which makes you wonder where the crazy high property taxes are actually going.

      • Dan Dietrich

        Outside of the two or three storefronts in the blockbuster building, which is being redeveloped, there are I think three total empty storefronts in downtown SO. The Midtown Direct train is a great asset, and my child has done extremely well in the schools. As with any school system, there is always room for improvement and budgets are tight, but parents at every school participate and keep an eye on things.

        • respectfully disagree

          Aren’t they putting the stores on the Taylor Pl side of the street for some reason, and the SO Ave portion will all be apartments? And half of SO Tennis Club is being turned into townhouses?

          Agree that much of the success of the school system falls on the parents, however, when you’re paying some of the highest taxes in the state (and country) and supposedly near 50% of those taxes are going to the school system, which isn’t even ranked in the top 50 in the state…

      • Nancy Janow

        It would be nice if “respectfully disagree” would actually put his name to his comments. Probably lives in New Providence!

    • Elliott Vernon

      True that South Orange has much going for it. Unfortunately, there seems to be an emerging tendency towards overdevelopment. We don’t need more densely-packed, unaffordable (to the masses) housing, and proximity to the train is not so great an advantage with our mass transit system in such a pathetic state of decrepitude.

      • Dan Dietrich

        Elliot, we need to make sure we hold the correct people accountable for the state of our transit system. Christie cut the funding by 90%. The housing pressure is a direct result of price increases in New York. If we try to live in a time warp we will become a ghost town. We need foot traffic downtown from these apartments to keep good businesses in town and to be attractive to new ones.

        • Elliott Vernon

          So, who benefits from new real estate development projects and the attendant increase in downtown population density, which puts additional strain on all manner of public resources? Who comes out ahead, other than the developers?

  7. samsnj

    I recently moved from Weehawken to Glen Ridge, so I wished both of them could be in the top spots! So by default, I hope Weehawken beats out South Orange!

  8. Sheena Collum

    South Orange in the Final Four. Let’s keep those votes coming in.

    • Scotty Gammon

      I think you mean FINAL

  9. John Bye

    Hey South Orange has some of the best triathletes in the state of NJ and a great tri-club — MAPSO! 🙂

    • Elliott Vernon

      Listen to you! You Maplewood-dweller! 🙂

    • Joanne Douds

      That is True – including Bryn Douds and Erik Douds.

  10. Sonia Johnson

    Westfield is my favorite NJ town