Downtown Showdown

Two towns remain in our Downtown Showdown, presented by Kings Food Markets. Who will be crowned the ultimate winner? Vote now!

It all comes down to this.

Maplewood and Morristown are the two downtowns left standing in New Jersey Monthly’s Downtown Showdown, presented by Kings Food Markets. Both municipalities won their Week 3 matchups and will now square off in the Championship Round.

The initial 16 downtowns were chosen by the editorial staff of New Jersey Monthly. For Week 1 voting, towns faced off based on population, while Week 2 pitted the victors against one another. Week 3 brought a new crop of survivors to face off to see who would advance to the final round. Maplewood topped Montclair, and Morristown bested Cape May.

Montclair and Cape May were eliminated.

Maplewood and Morristown share a number of charming attributes. Both are home to various shops, a Kings Food Market, a performing arts center and a plethora of excellent restaurants, including a NJM Top 25. (Lorena’s in Maplewood, Jockey Hollow Bar and Kitchen in Morristown.)

Don’t be mistaken: Both towns burst with personality.

Maplewood Mayor Vic DeLuca says Maplewood Village’s smallness is what makes it special, giving the area “a European feel.” He says Maplewood’s uniqueness is immediately apparent, thanks to, “a winding roadway with a 15 MPH speed limit and no traffic lights, free parking throughout, and a blend of family owned shops and services.”

“Our downtown is off the main drag and we like it like that,” he says. “It’s walkable and a comfortable place to watch the world go by.”

Morristown, meanwhile, embraces largeness. Mayor Tim Dougherty says Morristown has become the hub of North Jersey, drawing visitors not only from far reaches of the state, but outside it as well.

“We recently hosted thousands of cyclists for the Gran Fondo Bike race,” he says. “Our Fall Festival on the Green [happening this weekend, Sunday September 27] brings in over 50,000 people. How many towns can handle that?”

“A great downtown is a place where you can live, work and play. That’s the key that makes Morristown unique,” he says.
Voting closes on Monday, September 28. The winner will be announced on Tuesday, September 29.

Who will be named the ultimate winner of the Downtown Showdown? What town deserves to be crowned the best downtown in the state? You help decide. Vote today!

What do you think of our Championship Round? Let us know how you feel in the comments!

Never been to some of theses towns? Read more about what they have to offer!

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