🎶 Love, exciting and new
come aboard, we’re expecting you 🎵

But that’ll be a buck eighty in tolls. Ayy, it’s Jersey.

Valentine’s Day is coming up fast and when we think of romance, do we really think of New Jersey as being a particularly romantic state? After all didn’t Springsteen sing of being “stuck in the mud somewhere in the swamps of Jersey” and “‘neath the refineries glow” and other assorted grit?

Yet in various studies the Garden State has been popping up as among the most romantic states. No, seriously.

Valentines Cupid NJ

Websitebuilderexpert.com did their own research looking at things like divorce rates versus marriage rates, google searches of “Valentine’s Day” and money spent on a significant other.

They concluded New Jersey ranked #5 for most romantic state in the U.S.. Only Hawaii (number 1), Texas, California and North Dakota had U.S. beat. More recently Dennis Malloy wrote about another study that had us up to #3 in the romance department.

Valentines day background with champagne and roses

Perhaps you’re cynical. Maybe you’re thinking come on, this is the setting of “The Sopranos” where Christopher turned his own lover Adriana over to Tony and Janice killed her own husband. But that’s only a TV show. How romantic are we in real life?

Didn’t we have Gov Phil Murphy serenade wife Tammy with a Frankie Valli song?

Of course it ended Jersey-style in a chorus of boos.

Are there other relationships in New Jersey we can use to show how romantic we really are?

There was Gov Jimmy McGreevey who lied to his wife for years then blindsided her just before coming out as “a gay American.”

FILE - Former Democratic Gov. Jim McGreevey is seen before New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy delivers his State of the State address to a joint session of the Legislature at the statehouse, in Trenton, N.J., Jan. 10, 2023. McGreevey announced Thursday, Nov. 9 that he will seek the mayor's office in Jersey City. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke, file)
(AP Photo/Matt Rourke, file)

We had the epic love story between Amy Grossberg and Brian Peterson, two NJ teens who conspired to kill their newborn and hide the body. Then turned on each other when the investigation got heavy.

Of course we can’t forget how much Westfield’s John List loved his family. He systematically killed his wife, mother and all his children and lined up their bodies to be found weeks like with creepy music playing endlessly on a turntable. He of course disappeared and, not being one to give up on romance, found a new wife.


Then there was table-throwing Teresa Giudice. The “Real Housewives of NJ” star was guilty of fraud along with her husband Joe Giudice, they both spent prison time and then there was that pesky deportation and divorce.

Typical Jersey love story, amiright?

2022 NBCUniversal Upfront
Getty Images

Cynicism aside, the real love stories are the ones you never hear about. The Jersey couples who toughed it out through the hard times. The couples who meant enough to each other to defy all logic or opposition. The ones who love each other even when they’re hating each other.

They’re not on TV. They’re not performing. The love songs they write don’t rhyme and they are written daily in smiles and tears and good times and bad and hands held on streets in Belmar.

So maybe we’re not perfect here in the dirty Jerz. But don’t let cynics like me tell you anything about love. Happy Valentine’s Day New Jersey.

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