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Highlands Reviews

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I love this town we may not be Beverly Hills but we’re a nice ocean town many of the comments above me are outdated the town has gotten much better and has lots of beautiful homes everywhere
Highlands is a small town filled with friendly citizens. Local businesses fill Highlands main street, Bay Avenue. The best part about growing up in Highlands is the community sense that I have always felt a part of. Although the town is compact, it offers many activities such as Garden Club, Arts Council, Twin Lights Tours, Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, and much more. What I enjoy most about Highlands are the access to multiple local parks. Hartshorne Woods Park is a vital part of my summer. As I run the paths of this park, I encounter many happy faces of not only people but dogs. I believe through Highlands natural beauty, people are brought together. In this child friendly town, the two local schools populations are low, but that only enhances the amount of opportunity. If I could change anything about Highlands I think I would add a larger library where adolescents and adults could collaborate. I think a bigger library would tie Highlands theme of community together.
This is a very tight knit community that will make you feel uncomfortable and literally run out of their town if you are a person of color. This Happened to me. The most non diverse town for people of color I have ever lived in.
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I agree with another poster here, the highlands is not a very nice town. It got hit hard by Sandy and half the town sits under sea level. A lot of homes are still uninhabitable. This is one of those places that is always up and coming but the town is always strapped for money. They are yet to rebuild their local townhall from 2012. You would think with the ferry this town would be great but the home values remain low (except up on the hill) and there's not much to do. There are a lot of renters. A few expensive homes and development went up recently but those will probably be the extent of any revitalization since the rest of the town still sits in a "bowl" so why invest or rebuild if it will be destroyed again. A few nicer of commuter towns nearby are Atlantic Highlands, Belford, Port Monmouth and Red Bank.
It is not horrible by any means, but it isn't a particularly nice neighborhood.
It was a nice place to grow up in, but I spent most of my time leaving for other places.
Houses are pretty nice, they need to work on potholes
A lot of employment opportunites that provide many servies
99% of the time the weather contributes to the good aspects of living here, but in the few cases (like Sandy) it can be devastating. Power outages usually last longer and occur more often than other places I have lived.
We have boardwalks, beaches, race track, and are easily accessible by ferry, car, bus, or train. There are many concert venues in the area, and plenty of historical sights.
Municipal governments can be polarized, and self serving... but most politicians are. OEM on a whole is highly responsive, we have great dedicated volunteers
A lot of people seem to be from nearby, or settle to start families here. The proximity to NYC, and the clean fresh environment make this area great for families.
After Sandy things seemed stagnant, but we are moving forward. Businesses have come back, and many new ones are moving in. Schools fluctuate between towns greatly, as does local government. Give it a few years, and things look like they will still be improving.
There is a lot of running and biking in this area. We have two major gym chains that it seems everyone belongs to; Retro and Work Out WOrld. There are also many independent gyms, and several health spas. Being a party and vacation destination there is a lot of drinking in the area, but it comes more from visitors than residents.
There are 3 local malls, and an outlet center. Most towns have at least two or three good consignment / antique shops and Asbury has a lot of retro modern furniture and art galleries. Quick Chek and Wawa are both common for convenience stores and gas both offering a wide variety of quick snacks, sandwiches, drinks, and competitive gas prices. NJ is a full service gas state no matter what station you choose. There is a good balance between big box, chain, and independent shops and restaurants.
While we have a large amount of pizzerias and chinese restaurants we also have uniques little cafes, diners, and fine dining. Seafood is big, and so are vegan cafes. Food trucks also come around the farmers markets, and some venues have dedicated food truck tasting events.
Generally people are friendly. In the county there is decent diversity of race and religion, though some areas have higher concentrations of religions and race and they are notable. There is a large gay and lesbian community in this area.
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We are nestled between the beaches of Sandy hook and the hiking of Hartshorne woods. The rivers are highly accessible for watercraft, in addition, there are multiple lifeguard beaches and bay beaches. Year round outdoor activities! The public parks are a source of pride, well maintained, and popular pots for summer birthday parties and barbecues.
Some areas are more walkable than others. By the coast is great for biking and a trail runs parallel to the main roads. Most of the traffic issues are in the summertime when tourists come to visit. There is a lot of texting while driving which is a major minus.
Locally there aren't a whole lot of opportunities, but we are within a close commute to New York CIty where there are far more jobs in a variety of fields.
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