Or, as we often quote from Shakespeare’s As You Like It, “You are welcome hither.”
The Registration Committee of the Village of Arden has put together a Welcome Packet for new residents to introduce them to many aspects of life in this unique community: the government, social activities, cultural resources — plus some coupons (free day of swimming, a free dinner, free folk dancing). We deliver a packet soon after a committee member sees a moving van unloading, or a neighbor tells us, “Someone new moved in next door. They need a Welcome Packet!”
So, if you are new to the community, and you stumbled across this page and are thinking, “I never got a Welcome Packet!” — or if you have been here for a year or more and are thinking the same thing, only with more annoyance — please contact us by sending an email using the link below. We have a Welcome Packet ready to deliver; we just don’t know you are here, or we don’t have an email address or phone number to contact you.
In the meantime, you can read The Virtual Welcome Packet below, which has a big advantage: thanks to the magic of the Internet, you can instantly link to community organizations, recycling information, and more. On the other hand, our old-fashioned, hand-delivered report folder with the Welcome to Arden label includes a copy of the beautiful Arden Book, an historical walking tour map of Arden from the Arden Craft Shop Museum, the indispensable ACRA Community Phone Directory, and those free coupons. Most importantly, we would like to meet you in person, so please introduce yourself (electronically) and we will introduce you to Arden (personally) as quickly as we can.
REQUEST/DEMAND YOUR WELCOME. Send us (the Registration Committee) a message by clicking here. Please include your name, address, the date you moved in, and your phone number or email address. If you have moved into Ardentown or Ardencroft, you can send us your information, and we will pass it on to the Registration Committee of your village. Some of the information in the Virtual Welcome Packet is the same for all three Ardens (trash & recycling, the Arden Club, ACRA, etc.). However, the three villages differ slightly in governmental structure, so much of the information on this website (ordinances, committees, office hours) may not apply to Ardencroft & Ardentown.
The Virtual Welcome Packet
This packet has been prepared by volunteers of the Arden Registration Committee to introduce new residents to the Village of Arden. In it you will find publications that tell about various aspects of life in this unique community.
COVID-19 UPDATES Many activities described below have been affected by safety restrictions and closures due to the current pandemic. But there is still a lot happening – outdoor events, virtual concerts, food truck nights, Zoom fitness classes, and more. Visit the websites listed for up-to-date information.
“Arden: Here’s How It Works” A brief guide to the town meeting form of government, the committees, trustees, Board of Assessors. Lists when town meetings are held and who can vote. Ordinances, current officers and more can be found on this Village government website.
The Arden Book History, government, organizations of the Ardens, prepared by the Arden Community Planning Committee. The centennial edition was published in 2000.
ACRA Neighborhood Directory The little spiral-bound phone book of residents in the three Ardens (Arden, Ardentown, Ardencroft). Prepared by the Arden Community Recreation Association, and distributed free to residents. Updated every 2 years. Includes government and recycling information, ads from local merchants, services and supporters.
Arden Walking Tour Map From the Arden Craft Shop Museum (see Facilities, below) — a map of the Ardens with three self-guiding walking tours.
Arden Club information & coupons The Arden Club is the non-profit organization whose home is Gild Hall. Many events in the Ardens are sponsored by the interest groups (gilds) of the Arden Club: concerts, Saturday town dinners, folk dancing, Gilbert & Sullivan operettas, Shakespeare, and, of course, the Arden Fair. It is also possible to form new gilds. Club dues are inexpensive; activities are also open to non-members. Members receive a monthly calendar of events. For more information about the Arden Club, see the web site: www.ardenclub.org.
The Arden Pool is also part of the club. Arden Club members may join the pool for an extra fee, plus a refundable bond. Pool membership compares to other swim clubs in the area. If you live in the Ardens, this is the pool to join for several reasons: You’ll meet a lot of your neighbors. There is a discount for seniors. If you have children, this is the place where many of the Arden kids spend their summer afternoons. The club’s swim team stresses enjoyment and participation by all team members. The pool is also available for rental for private parties. For information about the pool see the website: www.ardenswimclub.com.
Some other groups
Arden Community Recreation Association Non-profit community organization. Holds events throughout the year for all ages (holiday parties, picnics, a House & Garden Tour) and runs a free 5-week summer program for children in the Ardens. For upcoming events, see the Arden Page. Web: acra community.org.
The Arden Page The town newspaper. Published monthly and distributed free to residents. Funded by the towns and individual donations. The editor is Lisa Mullinax (302 529-7399). Classified ad editors are Tom Wheeler and Jan Westerhouse (302 529-7690). You should already be receiving the Arden Page around the first weekend of each month.
Candlelight Theater Professional dinner theater in Ardentown. Also has children’s plays (and lunch) during the school year. Candlelighttheatredelaware.org Phone 302 475-2313.
Gild Hall Home of the Arden Club. Has a well-equipped kitchen, great dance floor. Available for private rental. See ardenclub.org for rates and availability.
Field Theater Outdoor theater on the Arden Green, aka the Frank Stephens Memorial Theater. Available for private rental. Contact the town secretary, 475-3516 or click here.
Buzz Ware Village Center Former Arden School, across from Gild Hall. Owned by the Village of Arden. Home of the ACRA children’s summer program. Current community programming includes a monthly Friday-night coffeehouse. Meeting rooms are available. For information, see ardenbuzz.com
The Arden Craft Shop Museum at the corner of Cherry & Millers. Open Sunday 1-3 and Wednesday 7:30-9. Our own little museum, a beautiful space with exhibits on the history and culture of the Ardens. The museum’s Bernie Schwab Community Room hosts exhibits, receptions and meetings. A variety of publications, notecards and other gift items are available for sale, including a map of the Arden with three self-guiding walking tours. ardencraftshopmuseum.com
Arden Woods, Sherwood Forest, Sunnyside Tract You are surrounded by woodlands that abound with wildflowers, birds and animals. Our woods are a peaceful retreat. Volunteers maintain their natural beauty at the annual woods cleanup, ivy “pulls” and other events. The Arden Forest Committee has a page on this website and also a wonderful public Facebook page, Forests of the Ardens, where they post the latest news and photographs.
You should become familiar with town ordinances and your responsibilities as a leaseholder. This Village government website has essential information and minutes of the town meetings. For a brief guide to Village government, see “Arden: Here’s How It Works.” The Arden Page has current news about new ordinances as they are considered.
Four “rules” that are often at issue:
1) Right-of-way. The “shoulder,” or “right-of-way,” is the land between the road and your leasehold. Even though it is Village land, the resident must maintain it. You may not plant shrubs or erect fences on it, or place rocks to keep people from parking on it. Please trim your shrubs for safety of pedestrians and drivers. You can help the Village avoid expensive maintenance by taking care of the public right-of-way and removing leaves that can clog the storm sewers.
2) Arden Off-Street Parking Ordinance. You must park on your leasehold unless you have been granted an exemption by the Safety Committee. Visitors may park on the public right-of-way with two wheels off the pavement.
3) Dogs may NOT roam freely. This is a county ordinance, as well as state law.
4) You must get permission from the trustees to remove a tree on your leasehold. To request permission, (or for other matters regarding your leasehold, land rent questions, etc.), call Julia McNeil, assistant to the trustees, at 475-7980. Tree removal requests may be downloaded from the Trustees page on the Village government website.
We hope this packet is helpful to you. Current contacts for organizations & committees can usually be found on the individual websites. If you have any questions, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
This is a busy, vibrant community. Residents are encouraged to take part in the life of the village. Whether you participate by serving in town government, assembling booths at the Arden Fair, or simply strolling around the Arden Green in the evening,