This rural N.J. paradise was almost destroyed by toxic chemicals

Cornfield

STEVE STRUNSKY / NJ.COM – With the sun high in the sky and distant irrigation sprinklers looking like fountains on a lush green plain, the 297 acres of Hallock’s U-Pick Farm in Plumsted is a rural landscape of arresting beauty to people more accustomed to the cities and suburbs of the Garden State and its neighbors.

“That’s why we came out here,” said newly-elected Township Committeeman Leonard A. Grilletto, a 73-year-old Manhattan native and retired auditor, who moved to Plumsted in 1979.

The township was incorporated in 1845 from land in neighboring Jackson, and is said to be named after a Quaker landowner, Clement Plumstead (who spelled it with an a). But if you’ve never heard of Plumsted, you’re probably not alone. More common references are to New Egypt and Cream Ridge, the township’s two mailing addresses. And New Egypt High School, along with a 73-year old dirt oval race track known as New Egypt Speedway, are local institutions that do little to spread the township’s name …

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