reduced. Through the years, residents
have fought hard to preserve the result-
ing sense of seclusion.
Today, according to Town Hall Man-ager Elizabeth Henley, Garrett Parkis known as an “activist community.”She says this dates to 1898, when, inan effort to prevent a typhoid outbreakfrom spreading through septic tanks,the town collectively rose up against oneresident who was using private plumb-ing, risking bringing the disease into thecommunity. The town incorporated andimmediately outlawed the practice. Theresident eventually fled town.
Garrett Park’s townspeople have suc-cessfully fought home mail delivery ser-vice since the 1950s, when the postalservice first approached them aboutchanging the system. To this day, resi-dents pick up their mail at the post officein the Penn Place building, formerlya 19th-century general store and nowhome to the Town Hall and Black MarketBistro. “It’s the town gathering place,” saysretired town archivist Barbara Shidler.
A 1968 proposal to widen Strath-more Avenue, the only road into town,was met with picketing and a resound-ing “no.” The town also introduced strictzoning ordinances to further restrictdevelopment. And in 1975 it created anArboretum Committee and a HistoricalPreservation Committee to encouragethe protection of Garrett Park’s naturalbeauty and history.
Ask former Mayor Chris Keller the
type of person who’s attracted to Gar-
rett Park and he’ll say: “Someone
who’s willing to put up with all of our
Garrett Park was listed on the National
Register of Historic Places in 1975 and
declared itself an arboretum in 1977.
In 1982, Garrett Park declared itself a
My wife and I always loved the town
nuclear-free zone, making the front page
of The New York Times. n S A L V A T O
of Garrett Park, the historic part. Even
though it’s eclectic and there’s a lot
of older people and a lot of younger
people, it all seems to mix pretty well.
If you have kids, it’s a great network
for kids, but there are plenty of people
who don’t have kids as well, and they
love it just as much.
Chef and co-owner of Persimmon, Sal’s Italian Kitchen and Wild