Reinventing Verona


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Over the decades of its existence, Verona has reinvented itself many times. We were a rural horse-and-buggy town that was transformed by a streetcar and then an “auto boulevard”, the road you now know as Grove Avenue. Farms and industry gave way to retail and service businesses. Local retail was challenged by the creation of shopping malls; both now compete with Internet shopping. Our population soared and shrank. Verona got very young with the Baby Boom, and then older.

Today, is kicking off a series that will look at how Verona is reinventing itself now. Using data from the 2010 Census and custom surveys, we’re going to look, over the coming weeks, at who is living in Verona now and how we spend our time and income. We’re going to delve into what Verona has become–and could become. We’re going to see who is reinventing Verona, and how.

Beginning with food. Once upon a time, dining out in Verona meant a picnic lunch in Verona Park. Now, as two-income families juggle work, school and sports schedules, they have come to rely heavily on food prepared outside of their homes. That’s an easy, anecdotal observation. But since the new master plan for Verona could open the way for more food businesses in town, we thought it would be good to learn more about what Verona eats. We’d like to know how much Verona is spending on restaurant meals, takeout and delivery. We’d like to know what kind of prepared foods we are  buying and where we are buying them from. And so, if you’re living in Verona now, we’d like you to take our Reinventing Verona Food Survey.

Not in Verona now? Don’t feel slighted. We’ll have surveys for you too in the coming weeks. We’re going to have surveys for young people in Verona and our senior citizens, too. If you have an idea for a survey that you think is crucial to understanding how Verona is changing, let us know.

And now, Verona, it’s time to take the Reinventing Verona Food Survey.

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Virginia Citrano
Virginia Citrano
Virginia Citrano grew up in Verona. She moved away to write and edit for The Wall Street Journal’s European edition, Institutional Investor, Crain’s New York Business and Since returning to Verona, she has volunteered for school, civic and religious groups, served nine years on the Verona Environmental Commission and is now part of Sustainable Verona. She co-founded MyVeronaNJ in 2009. You can reach Virginia at [email protected].


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