Venture past the Community House of Moorestown and you’ll see a plaque installed at the wall near the sidewalk entrance that says Make it Moorestown.
Money Magazine named Moorestown the Best Place to Live in America in July 2005.
“The current town manager, Kevin Aberant, had just been elected as the new mayor … and he came to me and to a woman named Beth Blair Slemmer and asked the two of us to co-chair a committee to come up with ideas to celebrate the fact that Moorestown had been named the Best Place to Live in America,” said John Logue, co-chair of the Make it Moorestown committee.
A year-long celebration of the award kicked off with town-wide block parties and fireworks at Wesley Bishop Park on Sept. 10, 2005. The committee had a fireworks show after receiving a donation from the owners of the Moorestown Mall.
Other festivities included Moorestown’s first Halloween parade and a winter carnival with sledding down Stokes Hill, which Logue explained is across from the former home of Samuel Leeds Allen, creator of the Flexible Flyer sled.
“At the castle across the street, we had a huge display of Flexible Flyer sleds that were antiques,” recalled Logue, who noted that warm weather with no snow forced the committee to find a solution for sledding.
“We found a company over in Philadelphia who actually had snow-making machines, and we hired this company and they came that morning and dumped several tons of snow on the hill,” Logue said.
Honorary celebrations ended with Moorestown’s first Fourth of July parade.
“That was the second and third and only times that Moorestown ever had fireworks,” Logue noted.
He also cited contributions from members of the community.
“All of those events – including police protection, fire protection – all of the costs and expenses of all of those events were paid for by donations from businesses and families and individuals,” Logue said.
The committee hired sculptor Travis Ogle to design the Make it Moorestown plaque.
“The idea was that it was … the special people, places and things of Moorestown that make Moorestown,” Logue explained. “If you look at it carefully, you’ll see fireworks in one corner, the antique fire truck, a sled … We called it the Make it Moorestown celebration.”
The plaque was displayed on the wall of the Community House last month. And one of the banners for the events also hangs in the Moorestown Hardware Store.
“It’s continuous,” said committee member Kathy Logue. “It’s special because of the people that make it happen.”