New Brunswick is a city of roughly 55,000 people in New Jersey. It is part of the seemingly never-ending string of cities that extends out from Manhattan, and is located less than 30 miles away from the core of NYC. Despite being so close to what many consider one of the greatest cities on the planet, New Brunswick has managed to develop its own unique character and identity. The most prominent feature of New Brunswick is certainly Rutgers University. Rutgers is a very well regarded public school that is among the largest in the country, with more than 65,000 students enrolled. It is a major employer, with close to 10,000 staff. The school counts four Nobel Prize winners among its alumni.
The large population of Rutgers makes up a good portion of the renters in New Brunswick. That means that your best times to look for apartments will be at the end of the semesters. November and December in the fall or April and May in the spring are ideal apartment hunting times.
New Brunswick landlords are wary of some of the pitfalls that you can run into when constantly renting to college students. If you can prove that you have the means to pay your rent, such as through a letter of employment or a consignor, you'll have a step up. Also, projecting a quiet, calm demeanor is helpful, as landlords worry about renting to college students that will throw constant parties as well.
New Brunswick suffers from the same traffic problems that plague most of this region. Instead of driving, consider taking the bus. Rutgers operates a bus system that moves throughout the very large campus, and these are accessible to non-students. The city bus system can get you anywhere else. Cycling is another good option, as there are good trails, especially in the University area.
The University itself is home to some good entertainment options, such as the Zimmerli Art Museum or the Geology Museum. Rutgers is also a competitive Division I school, so taking in a game is always an option. George Street is where to go if you want a fancy meal. If you're looking for the college bars, head to Easton Avenue and try the Court Tavern.
One of New Brunswick’s claims to fame is that it is a great place to see regional theatre. The George Street Playhouse, for instance, is reputed to be one of the better regional theatres in the country. Rutgers University is home to many of the other most remarkable and appealing attractions in New Brunswick. The University is home to an art museum, beautiful gardens, and historic buildings, all of which are worth seeing. The other main attraction is simply the downtown core itself. Some of the buildings in the downtown area are nearing three hundred years of age, and a tour of New Brunswick is a pleasure for anyone with an interest in or appreciation for architecture.
With great theatre available in New Brunswick, it only makes sense that so many of the restaurants focus on providing a complete experience to make for unforgettable nights out on the town. The Sahara Restaurant is a feast of Middle Eastern delights. Due Mari is the perfect picture of an authentic Italian restaurant. In addition to it's traditional Italian entrees, the restaurant is known for it's wonderful dessert menu and extensive wine cellar. If you're headed out for a date and want to have a traditional steakhouse experience, then try Steakhouse 85. Vegetarians in town all tend to be big fans of Maoz Vegetarian, although the food is tasty enough that meat eaters are likely to leave happy as well.
Tumulty’s Pub is a great choice if you want to catch some live music later on in the night. However, if you want to visit the truly legendary live music bar in town, you need to go to the Court Tavern. Many of the biggest up-and-coming bands have played the Court Tavern, and it is now one of those places that is a part of music as well as local history. If you're looking to escape the madhouse that is most college bars, you could swing by Patrick’s Pub for a much quieter and relaxing evening. Lovers of locally brewed beer can swing by the Harvest Moon Brewery for a pint made right in New Brunswick.
Theatre is a major attraction in New Brunswick. The theatres here host world-class shows, but tickets are not nearly as expensive as what you might pay in the big city. The George Street Playhouse is the best known of the professional theatres in New Brunswick, with numerous productions leaving to go on to off-Broadway and Broadway runs over the 40 year history of the theatre. Another important theatre is the Crossroads Theatre Company, which was recognized in 1999 with the Tony for best regional theatre. It is one of the most important African American cultural institutions in the country, and continues it's proud tradition of ground-breaking art to this day.
The Hungarian Festival takes place each June in New Brunswick. This is the chance for the local Hungarian community to shine during a huge celebration of their food and cultural art forms. Several other events take place at Rutgers University, including The Rutgers Film Co-op/New Jersey Media Arts Center’s New Jersey International Film Festival. This provides an opportunity for local filmmakers to get their work screened in front of an audience. The Homecoming Weekend celebration on the Rutgers’s campus is also something that tends to get the entire town involved. These take place over the course of a weekend each fall.
Brunswick Square is the major shopping center located in New Brunswick. This large mall has more than 65 stores for visitors to shop at, and a 13-screen theatre. The primary anchor stores are a Macy’s and a JC Penney. The Shoppes at New Brunswick is another local shopping center. It is easy to find, with simple access from Route 1717. Finally, the beauty of downtown New Brunswick can't be overstated. If you're looking for the most scenic place to spend your day browsing the stores, then you can't beat the downtown district. The historic buildings make the perfect homes for dozens of little shops and restaurants.
Like many things in New Brunswick, sports in the city are all about Rutgers’s University. The official team name in New Brunswick is the Rutgers’s Scarlet Knights, and you can bet that everyone born and raised in New Brunswick is a Scarlet Knights fan through and through. Rutgers is famous for being the place where college football began, as the first ever college game was played in here in the mid 19th century. Today, the team competes in the Big Ten, playing out of High Point Solutions Stadium. The Stadium is located in Piscataway, but with room for more than 52,000 people, you can be sure that many people from New Brunswick make the commute to catch the game on a regular basis.
Visiting the Rutgers Gardens is a great way to get a taste of the outdoors without having to wander too far afield from New Brunswick. It is certainly one of the greenest and most beautiful parts of the city. The city also has a large amount of parkland, with over 270 acres of the city being dedicated to green space. One of the largest areas of parkland in the region is Buccleuch Park, which covers 78 acres. With the Raritan River nearby, the park is extremely scenic, and has miles of hiking and cycling trails within it. There are also baseball diamonds and tennis courts in the park for the public to enjoy.