Memories From Around The “Pleasant Little City”

By Diane Norek Harrison

SOUTH AMBOY—In my Sept. 26 column, I had asked readers to let me know where Angie’s Lounge was located in 1975. I was told it was actually on Route 35 in the Melrose section of Sayreville, where the former Sweethearts was located, and is now Black Betty’s Saloon. This bar was also called Angelo’s in the 1970s. It was listed with the South Amboy Tavern Association.

Melrose does come under South Amboy for its mailing address and sometimes things can be a little mixed up when finding past material. Bars in the past served a lot of good food. Send me bar names, location, owners and what great food was whipped up in the bars of the past from any of the seven towns listed below.

These memories of the last school year of St. Mary’s Elementary School, 2006-2007, are from my cousin, Deborah Cooney Marion:

“The last year of St. Mary’s, there was an elaborate display that was done in the fall for the re-accreditation team. The display was in the glass showcase in the middle of the hall. They asked for any memorabilia people had from their childhood, parents, or grandparents. You know my Mom! She had my Dad’s sixth grade school picture and a cardboard project he made in the second grade. It was a profile of George Washington as a boy and had metal paper fasteners so the arms and legs could move. He was holding an ax (to cut down the cherry tree).

“We also sent in my eighth grade report card and my son Eddie’s eighth grade report card from two different dioceses. Remember Trenton and Metuchen? We had a picture of his first Communion in front of the Mary statue on the church lawn with Susan Halmi and Katelyn Keegan. The three mothers were behind them, Mary Ann Manhattan, Roxanne Meszaros and myself. We had made our first Communion together.

“I had another picture of the two Debbies, my daughter, Debbie and Diane’s niece Debbe Norek, in the South Amboy St. Patrick’s Day Parade when they marched as St. Mary’s students. So my children attended St. Mary’s with second cousins on both sides of my family.

“The display had old graduation robes, a cheerleading outfit, an old one piece desk (mine), a cafeteria tray with melmac dishes, an old filmstrip projector and tons of stuff I’d forgotten about.”

On Aug. 4, 1990, South Amboy Fire Department celebrated 100 years. Leading up to the spectacular parade were many activities sponsored by the fire department. There was an extensive display of pictures, apparatus and much more depicting the history of the “City’s Bravest” over the last 100 years. The display was shown at the Senior Center on Stevens Avenue.

If any one from any of the towns listed below has information or memories of exhibits, displays, etc. of anything celebrated in the towns please let me know for a 2009 column. Have you done some of your own research on a subject in the towns? Want to see it printed? Please send!

If you have your own memories or past information for Carteret, Edison, Metuchen, Perth Amboy, Sayreville, South Amboy or Woodbridge you can email me at or send “copies” of your material to me at c/o CMD Media, P.O. Box 1061, Rahway, N.J. 07065.

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