New Jersey Monthly magazine ranked Bergenfield as its 211st best place to live in its 2010 rankings of the "Best Places To Live" in New Jersey. The magazine ranked Bergenfield as its 231st best place to live in its 2008 rankings of the "Best Places To Live".
Bergenfield has been called the "Little Manila" of Bergen County. Of the 14,224 Filipino population in the county as a whole enumerated in the 2000 Census, 3,133 (22% of the county total) lived in Bergenfield. By the 2010 Census, 4,569 Bergenfield residents (17.1% of the population) listed themselves as being of Filipino ancestry.
There were 8,852 households of which 35.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.7% were married couples living together, 13.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 23.0% were non-families. 19.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.02 and the average family size was 3.46.
In the borough, 23.9% of the population were under the age of 18, 8.6% from 18 to 24, 26.1% from 25 to 44, 28.4% from 45 to 64, and 13.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39.0 years. For every 100 females there were 91.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 88.8 males.
The Census Bureau's 2006-2010 American Community Survey showed that (in 2010 inflation-adjusted dollars) median household income was $82,546 (with a margin of error of +/- $6,568) and the median family income was $99,963 (+/- $5,602). Males had a median income of $52,891 (+/- $2,058) versus $50,443 (+/- $2,598) for females. The per capita income for the borough was $35,034 (+/- $2,133). About 3.9% of families and 5.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 7.2% of those under age 18 and 7.1% of those age 65 or over.
There were 8,981 households out of which 36.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 59.8% were married couples living together, 11.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 24.8% were non-families. 20.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.92 and the average family size was 3.41.
In the borough the population was spread out with 24.8% under the age of 18, 7.3% from 18 to 24, 31.0% from 25 to 44, 23.2% from 45 to 64, and 13.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 91.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 88.2 males.
The median income for a household in the borough was $62,172, and the median income for a family was $71,187. Males had a median income of $42,074 versus $35,137 for females. The per capita income for the borough was $24,706. About 2.6% of families and 3.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 2.6% of those under age 18 and 3.8% of those age 65 or over.
Bergenfield is governed under the Borough form of New Jersey municipal government. The government consists of a Mayor and a Borough Council comprising six council members, with all positions elected at large. A Mayor is elected directly by the voters to a four-year term of office. The Borough Council consists of six members elected to serve three-year terms on a staggered basis, with two seats coming up for election each year.
As of 2013[update], the mayor of Bergenfield is Carlos Aguasvivas (D), who was sworn in on as the new mayor on April 18, 2013, and will serve until the general election held on November 5, 2013. Aguasvivas was chosen to succeed Timothy J. Driscoll, who died on March 19, 2013, and had been elected to a term that would have ended on December 31, 2015. Members of the Borough Council are Council President Ora C. Kornbluth (D, 2013), Thomas A. Lodato (D, 2015), Rafael Marte (D, serving until November 2013, filling vacant seat of Carlos Aguasvivas), Hernando Rivera (D, 2015), Charles K. Steinel (D, 2013) and P. Christopher "Chris" Tully (D, 2014).
As of Election Day, November 4, 2008, there were 12,988 registered voters. Of registered voters, 4,846 (37.3% of all registered voters) were registered as Democrats, 2,171 (16.7%) were registered as Republicans and 5,962 (45.9%) were registered as Unaffiliated. There were 9 voters registered to other parties.
The Bergenfield Police Department provides police services to the Borough of Bergenfield. As of 2010, there are a total of 46 sworn officers in the department, 8 civilian telecommunicators, and 3 civilian Records Bureau employees.
Started in 1905, the Bergenfield Fire Department (BFD) has three independent fire companies and a career staff.
The Bergenfield Volunteer Ambulance Corps, Inc. (BVAC) was formed in 1941 as the "Bergenfield Volunteer Firemen's Ambulance Corps." Renamed the "Bergenfield Volunteer Ambulance Corps, Inc." and established as an organization independent of the Bergenfield Fire Department in 1981, BVAC is located at 1 Froelich Street in Bergenfield. The BVAC is a volunteer independent public emergency medical service. As such, they do not bill for services. BVAC is funded by donations from the public as well as limited funding from the borough.
The BVAC is a member of the New Jersey State First Aid Council.
Students in grades Kindergarten through 12 are educated by the Bergenfield Public Schools which serve a total of nearly 3,800 students. Schools in the district (with 2010-11 enrollment data from the National Center for Education Statistics) are five elementary schools serving Kindergarten - 5th grade — Franklin Elementary School with 396 students, Hoover Elementary School with 191 students, Jefferson Elementary School with 226 students, Lincoln Elementary School with 324 students, and Washington Elementary School with 246 students — Roy W. Brown Middle School with 808 students in grades 6 - 8, and Bergenfield High School with 1,190 students in grades 9-12.
Main roads include Washington Avenue, Main Street and New Bridge Road.
Bergenfield is one of a growing number of districts to form a SID (Special Improvement District). Bergenfield’s Special Improvement District stretches a mile along Washington Avenue from Teaneck to Dumont has been promoting the local businesses for several years. Its mission is to inform people about Bergenfield's shopping distrct and its over 50 international restaurants and food stores within one mile.
On May 4, 2006, the ABC show Extreme Makeover: Home Edition came to Bergenfield to build a home for the Llanes family on New Bridge Road. The episode aired as the pre-season two-hour special originally broadcast on September 17, 2006. The Llanes sold their home in 2012 and went to live with relatives because their taxes increased beyond their ability to pay, having risen from under $6,500 in 2007 to more than $15,000 five years later due to the increased assessed value of the home following the renovation.
On July 22, 2007, the Team Bergenfield Roller Hockey Club, won the NARCh National Roller Hockey Championship defeating the Nor-Cal Patriots 6-5 in Estero, Florida. Team Bergenfield went 6-0-1 in the tournament en route to winning the Men's Silver Championship. The team formed in Bergenfield in 1994 and is currently one of the longest running roller hockey clubs in the United States.
Peter "Produce Pete" Napolitano (born c. 1941), grocer best known for his long-running television news produce segments and as a spokesman for the Pathmark supermarket chain who owns Napolitano's Produce in the borough.
Prestige Records, a major producer of jazz recordings that was established in 1949, had its offices located here from the mid-1960s until its sale in 1972.
Singer Tom Russell wrote a song called Bergenfield, discussing the suicide via carbon monoxide of four teenagers in the borough in 1987. There is also a book written about the teenage suicides called Teenage Wasteland.
Snail Mail No More (2000) and P.S. Longer Letter Later (1998) take place in South Bergenfield, New Jersey. Ann M. Martin, the author of The Babysitters Club, found out about Bergenfield after a TV show and a movie for The Babysitters Club were filmed in Bergenfield, New Jersey instead of Stamford, Connecticut or Stony Brook, New York, and also met Amber Brown author Paula Danziger after 1990-1995. The two-book series takes place in 1998 and 1999, though P.S. was written in 1997 and Snail was published in 2000.
^History of Bergen County, p. 336 ff. shows an incorporation date of July 17, 1894.
^Harvey, Cornelius Burnham. Genealogical History of Hudson and Bergen Counties, New Jersey, p. 11, New Jersey Genealogical Publishing Company, 1900. Accessed September 1, 2013. "For a period of sixteen years following the passage of this act few boroughs were organized in the State, only three of them being in Bergen County.... As it was twenty-six boroughs were in the county from January 23, 1894, to December 18, of the same year."
^Stevens, Jean. "Popular roast pig finds a following in North Jersey", Herald News, September 12, 2007. "One might find more lechon in Passaic these days. The city may be North Jersey's next so-called Little Manila, following Bergenfield, Bloomfield and Belleville."
^Glynn, Erin Patricia. Aguasvivas sworn in as Bergenfield mayor", Twin-Boro News, April 19, 2013. Accessed August 12, 2013. "Carlos Aguasvivas, a councilman since 2009, was administered the oath of office and will serve as mayor until the November election. It is at that time voters will elect a candidate who will serve the remaining two-year unexpired term left vacant by the late Mayor Timothy Driscoll, who passed away March 19 at the age of 87."
^Devecentis, Philip. "Marte sworn in as Bergenfield councilman, Twin-Boro News, May 23, 2013. Accessed August 12, 2013. "The swearing-in of Rafael Marte as the newest member of Bergenfield’s governing body roused a standing ovation from a modest crowd in attendance at the borough hall on May 13.... A special meeting was called to fill a seat on the Borough Council vacated last month by Carlos Aguasvivas, who was selected by his colleagues to be mayor after Mayor Timothy Driscoll died in March."
^via Associated Press. "Booker is officially a U.S. senator after being sworn in", NJ.com, October 31, 2013. Accessed October 31, 2013. "Former Newark Mayor Cory Booker was sworn in as a Democratic senator from New Jersey today, taking the oath of office, exchanging hugs with Vice President Joe Biden and acknowledging the applause of friends and family members seated in the visitor's gallery that rings the chamber.... Booker, 44, was elected to fill out the term of the late Sen. Frank Lautenberg, who died earlier this year."
^Ensslin, John C. "North Jersey Assemblywoman Connie Wagner resigns office", The Record (Bergen County), September 30, 2013. Accessed October 1, 2013. "Assemblywoman Connie Wagner, D-Paramus, has resigned her seat effective Tuesday, about two months earlier than expected, to spend time with her family in Florida.... Her earlier-than-expected departure means that Bergen County Democratic Committee members from District 38 must choose someone to fill the seat on an interim basis. Paramus Council President Joseph Lagana, the candidate they chose to run in place of Wagner, said it won’t be him."
^ abEnsslin, John C. "Bergen County Freeholders choose Ganz as chairman; Democrat gives Republicans 2 top slots", The Record (Bergen County), January 3, 2013. Accessed January 10, 2013. "The swearing-in of Freeholders Tracy Silna Zur and Steve Tanelli gave the Democrats a 4-3 majority and control of the board for the first time in two years. The board elected David Ganz as chairman, as expected.... The reorganization meeting drew several top Democrats from across the state, with U.S. Sen. Bob Menendez swearing in Tanelli, a former North Arlington councilman, and Mayor Cory Booker of Newark swearing in Zur, an attorney from Franklin Lakes."
^Freeholder Home Page, Bergen County, New Jersey. Accessed January 9, 2013. As of date accessed, John D. Mitchell is listed as Chairman, John A. Felice is shown as Vice Chairman, and both John Driscoll, Jr. and Robert G. Hermansen are listed as members despite having terms of office that ended in 2012.
^Al Di Meola, Telarc International Corporation. Accessed September 20, 2007. "“In the ‘60s, if you didn’t play like Eric Clapton or Jimi Hendrix or Jimmy Page, you weren’t accepted,” he recalls of his high school years in Bergenfield, New Jersey."
^Hernandez, Cava. "GEORGE GATELY : Creador del gato Heathcliff", El Mundo (Spain), October 6, 2001. Accessed November 20, 2007. "George Gately Gallagher nació en Queens Village, Nueva York, en 1928, meses antes de que estallase la Gran Depresión. Pero, a todos los efectos, hay que considerarle un habitante de New Jersey, en cuya localidad de Bergenfield es donde transcurrieron su infancia y su adolescencia."
^Rotella, Mark. "Straight Out of Newark", The New York Times, October 2, 2005. Accessed October 9, 2007. "Originally from the Bronx, Mr. Gaudio had, at age 15, written the hit "Who Wears Short Shorts," which he made up while driving with friends along the main drag in Bergenfield."
^Mr. G, where might you be? Nary a peep on Penthouse publisher's eviction, Media Life August 11, 2003, "Guccione, who is originally from Bergenfield, N.J., bought his 45-room, 20,000-square-foot (1,900 m2) mansion back in Penthouse’s 1970s heyday. Located on East 67th Street between Central Park and Madison Avenue, its décor includes a swimming pool modeled on a Roman bath and a collection of paintings by the likes of Picasso and Matisse."
^Rosen, Jane Calem. "Local rabbi new head of interfaith center", New Jersey Jewish Standard, August 9, 2007. Accessed July 13, 2012. "As commutes go, his daily trip to and from his home in Bergenfield to his job in Fairfield, Conn. isn't too bad, said Rabbi Dr. Eugene Korn, the new executive director of the Center for Christian-Jewish Understanding at Sacred Heart University."
^Miller, Jonathan. "He Fought the Law. They Both Won.", The New York Times, January 22, 2006. Accessed January 17, 2011. "The child of Filipino doctors, Mr. Lat grew up in blue-collar Bergenfield and well-to-do Saddle River, where his neighbors included former President Richard M. Nixon."
^Feldberg, Robert. "HOW WE HAD FUN", The Record (Bergen County), May 7, 1995. Accessed October 25, 2009. "And Bergenfield-bred Jimmy Lydon, who played the eternal teenager Henry Aldrich on radio and in B movies, had married his high-school sweetheart."
^Mucky Pup, last.fm. Accessed October 25, 2009. "Mucky Pup was a hardcore band formed in Bergenfield, New Jersey, USA in 1985."
^Bloom, Susan. "Growth Stock: Produce Pete explains why Jersey produce beats all.", New Jersey Monthly, March 14, 2011. Accessed June 28, 2012. "The Jersey born and raised fruit-and-vegetable guru affectionately known as Produce Pete is as authentic as his Bergen County roots and the Garden State produce he proudly promotes. Following years of hard work running Napolitano’s Produce, a family business in Bergenfield, this affable Jersey guy has become a local celebrity, known for his enthusiastic Saturday-morning segments on NBC’s Weekend Today in New York, his role as a print and broadcast spokesman for the A&P family of supermarkets, and his appearances on such shows as The View.... Though officially retired from the grueling 20-hour workdays of his retail operation, the 66-year-old Oakland resident still relishes the opportunity to help people navigate their local produce aisle or farmer’s market."
^Schoemer, Karen. "Sounds Around Town", The New York Times, July 24, 1992. Accessed May 16, 2012. "Bergenfield, from his album Poor Man's Dream"(Philo/ Rounder), is a look at suburban teen-age suicide."
Westervelt, Frances A. (Frances Augusta), 1858-1942, History of Bergen County, New Jersey, 1630-1923
Municipal Incorporations of the State of New Jersey (according to Counties) prepared by the Division of Local Government, Department of the Treasury (New Jersey); December 1, 1958.