Say what you want about New Jersey, it's a great place to raise your children. In fact New Jersey placed five cities in Safewise's "The 30 Safest Cities to Raise a Child."

If you look on the list, you'll see Middletown at number 9, followed by Wayne Twp at 11, Toms River at 13, Bridgewater at 17, and Hillsborough at 22. While all these towns are great with excellent locations and things for kids to do, I'd like to nominate my town of Roosevelt which didn't make the list but I think should have and here's why.

You can be a kid longer in Roosevelt. With a population of only 872 (taken in 2014) there's a closeness that exists among its people. Roosevelt school is located up the block from our house. Heck, the town is so small that Roosevelt school is located up the block from everyone's house! There are no buses so every morning the kids are either dropped off or ride their bikes.

After school, my sons play with the 11 other kids their age that live on our block. You can almost always find a football game going on on the side of my house, or basketball game down the block, they also ride their bikes, play guns, video games, explore the Assunpink which is a wildlife preserve, and whatever else they feel like doing, but it's mostly outside and together.

Most belong to the Hilltop pool club which is also right up the block and very cheap to join. We're also less than 10 minutes from Great Adventure which also makes "Hurricane Harbor" another hangout.

In Roosevelt, it takes a village as all the parents keep an eye out and text each other so kids are always being watched even if they don't know it.

When I was growing up in Union City, we once counted 50 kids all within five years of each other living in a six block radius. There was always something to do. That's what I wanted for my kids and in Roosevelt, we've got it.

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