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Dollars and Cents, The ABCO FCU Financial BLOG

Five New Jersey Parks To Visit


Some people think of New Jersey as  just the turnpike,
diners, and strip  malls, but residents know NJ has  more
than its fair share of stunning  natural beauty!  
is a great  time to check out these beautiful  parks nearby.




Palmyra Cove Nature Park – 
Palmyra, Burlington County

Bring your camera and explore 9.5 miles of trails in this 250-acre 
natural area home to a variety of  birds, butter?ies, dragon?ies,
and  other wildlife! Visitors can also  check out the Discovery Center 
open daily.

Smithville Park –
Eastampton,  Burlington County

This 312-acre park features a  diverse collection of habitats and terrain.
With upland forests and  meadows, freshwater streams and  wetlands,
creek shoreline and the  22-acre Smithville Lake, visitors  can enjoy
hiking, biking, ?shing,  and canoeing in an idyllic, natural  setting.
Bring the kids – there’s 
a picnic area with grills and a  playground on site!

Mannesquan Reservoir – 
Howell, Monmouth County

Spend a day at this beautiful  and unique spot in southern Monmouth
County! The 770-acre  Reservoir is part of a larger 1,208-  acre site
that includes woods and  wetlands, a 5-mile perimeter trail,  ?shing
and boating areas, and a  Visitor Center. No need to load 
up the car
– kayak, rowboat, and  bicycle rentals available!

Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife  Refuge –
Oceanville, Atlantic County

This refuge in Atlantic County is a  great option for those with
mobility issues, or those who just want 
to enjoy wildlife from the
seat of  their car. While hiking and biking  are permitted, the most
popular  place to view wildlife in the refuge  is the Wildlife Drive.
This 8-mile,  one-way, unpaved road leads you  through beautiful
wetlands and  woodlands where you’re sure to see  lots of waterfowl
and shorebirds.

Cape May Point State Park –
Cape  May  Point, Cape   May County

There’s something for everyone at  this natural area at New Jersey’s 
southernmost point. Climb Cape  May lighthouse, view wildlife from 
the observation platforms, check  out a WWII bunker, go surf ?shing, 
or just relax on the beach!

Fresh from the Garden! Our Favorite Jersey Produce Recipes

New Jersey is referred to as the "Garden State" for good reason. From blueberries to watermelon to our famous tomatoes, gardens and produce stands are overflowing with delicious produce and there are so many fun things to do with it! Here are five recipes from ABCO employees. Enjoy!

Katy's BLT Bites

16 large Jersey cherry tomatoes
1/2 pound apple-smoked bacon, cooked and crumbled
1/2 cup Mayonnaise
1/3 cup minced green onions (green and white parts)
2 tbsp minced Romaine Lettuce

Directions: Cut a thin slice off the top of the tomatoes, scoop out and discard pulp. Rinse and drain the tomatoes (cut side down) on a paper towel for 10 minutes. Combine bacon, mayo, onions, and lettuce in a bowl. Scoop mixture into the tomatoes. Refrigerate covered for at least an hour (not overnight). Serve Chilled.

Carl's Blueberry Pound Cake

2 cups fresh Jersey blueberries
1 stick (1/2 cup) Butter
4 ounces soft cream cheese
3 cups all purpose flour
1 cup lemon yogurt
2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
4 eggs
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon grated lemon peel
½ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vanilla

Glaze 1 ¼ cups confectioners' sugar
2 tablespoon lemon juice

Directions: Preheat oven to 350. Grease and flour 10 in bunt pan. Cream butter, cream cheese and sugar with mixer. Add eggs one at a time beating well after each addition. Beat in lemon peel and vanilla. Toss blueberries with 2 tablespoons of the flour. Mix remaining flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add flour mixture to creamed mixture alternately with yogurt until combined. Fold in blueberry mixture. Pour batter into prepared pan and bake 55-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10-15 minutes remove to wire rack cool completely. Mix confectioners' sugar and lemon juice until smooth, drizzle over cake.

Melanie's Cantaloupe & Tomato Bruschetta

2 cups Jersey cantaloupe
3 large jersey tomatoes
1/4 cup red onion
1/4 cup. fresh basil
2 tbsp. white pepper
2 tsp. black pepper
2 tsp. sea salt
2 tbsp. aged balsamic vinegar
Directions: Dice cantaloupe, tomatoes and red onion. Combine in bowl. Stir in balsamic vinegar & fresh basil. Season with salt and pepper. Chill in refrigerator 2 hours. Serve on top of fresh toasted, sliced baguette bread.

Chris's Quick Tomato Salad

2 Med to Large Jersey Tomatoes
1 Jersey cucumber
3 tbsp chopped fresh chives
1 tbsp grated parmesan cheese
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp of red wine vinegar
Sea salt & cracked black pepper

Directions: Chop tomatoes into bite size pieces. Cut one cucumber in half length wise then slice each half into half moon slices about 1/8 in. thick. Combine with tomatoes and sprinkle with chives and parmesan. Toss with oil and vinegar and season with salt& pepper to taste.

Jerrie's Watermelon Feta Salad

6 cups Jersey watermelon
1 cup crumbled feta cheese
½ cup chopped Marcona almonds
4 tbsp lemon dressing (can be found at most supermarkets)

Directions: Cut watermelon into bite size chunks. Sprinkle with feta and Marcona almonds. Toss with lemon dressing.

10 Local Road Trips Worth the Drive

By Julia Bernd - Staff Writer

The weather's turning warm, and it's a great time to go out for a drive! You don't have to go far from home for a one-of-a- kind experience. Here are 10 area locations that you're sure to remember:

1. New Hope, PA & Lambertville, NJ Charm abounds in these towns hugging the Delaware River. Spend the day people watching on the patio at Havana Restaurant, browsing the unique shops on Main Street or catch a show at the Bucks County Playhouse. If antiques are your thing, you'll find few places in the area with more antique shops than historic Lambertville.

2. Smithville, NJ A unique enclave in Atlantic County, the town of Smithville is a great family-friendly day out. Walk the cobblestone and brick paths, and explore the many specialty shops. The kids will enjoy the carousel and the paddle boats available for rent at Lake Meone in the center of it all. When it's time for dinner, check out the Smithville Inn or Fred & Ethel's Lantern Light Tavern.

3. Jim Thorpe, PA Adventure awaits at Jim Thorpe in Carbon County, PA. With its prime location on the Lehigh River, Jim Thorpe is a hot spot for rafting and mountain biking. Its culture is nothing to sneeze at either. There are a ton of great restaurants and art galleries in town, and it's also home to the Mauch Chunk Opera House.

4. Cape May, NJ On the southern tip of NJ, Cape May is a refuge for wildlife. Visit the Cape May Zoo, board a Whale Watching Cruise or take an Airboat Adventure through the marshlands. If you enjoy birdwatching, Cape May is one of the best spots for birding in North America (not to mention all of the beautiful beaches and Victorian homes).

5. Old City - Philadelphia Philadelphia is so close that it can be easy to forget how it attracts visitors from across the country for the rich history that is right here in our backyard! Visit the National Constitution Center and tour the Betsy Ross House and Independence Hall. When you're finished, have dinner at one of the many amazing restaurants in Old City. (Remember, to get ice cream at Franklin Fountain, adorably served up by staff in bowties.)

6. Art Museum Area - Philadelphia In recent years, Philadelphia has gained a reputation for being one of the best places in the country to see art. With the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Barnes Foundation and the Rodin Museum – all within a mile of eachother on the Ben Franklin Parkway – you will be able to span hundreds of years of art in one day (or two). When you finish at the museums, take a walk behind the PMA and look out over Boathouse Row, or grab a bite at The Water Works Restaurant and Lounge.

7. Lancaster County, PA Return to a simpler way of life in Amish Country. Visit the Bird-in-Hand Farmers Market for out-of-this-world baked goods, or take a buggy ride, and visit the Amish Village in nearby Ronks to get a true sense for the Amish way of life. If craft beer is your thing, head on down to the city of Lancaster to visit Lancaster Brewing for a tour.

8. Kennett Square, PA Two words: Longwood Gardens. Kennett Square is home to Longwood Gardens, frequently cited as one of the 10 best botanical gardens in the U.S.

9. Princeton, NJ Taking a drive to Princeton is worth it for the architecture alone. The buildings that make up Princeton University and run along Nassau St. in the center of town are some of the most interesting in New Jersey. The town also has many museums and historic attractions, making it an intellectual's delight.

10. Hershey, PA Will. Drive. For. Chocolate. With Hersheypark Amusement Park, Chocolate World and the Chocolate Spa, Hershey is every child's (and child-at- heart's) dream come true, and it's less than three hours away. Have fun exploring!

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