[VIDEO] What's Westfield Doing in Clark's Infomercial?
The pricey infomercial highlights Clark's rec program and schools but features Westfield's downtown.
Clark's television debut is here but it appears to include a special guest star: Westfield.
Clark's appearance on NFL commentator and former player Terry Bradshaw's "Today in America" infomercial series was recently completed and is available on the company's YouTube page. Watch it by clicking the play button in our gallery, right.
While the infomercial, with a near-$20,000 price tag, provides a detailed history of Clark and highlights the town's rec program, schools and accessibility it also features Westfield's downtown, something not lost on Patch readers.
No stranger to the small and big screen, Westfield has been used as the backdrop for television shows such as "Ed" and "What Would You Do?" The downtown shopping area was also prominently featured in local filmmaker Ken Castellano's indie film "Return to Start." In 2011, Good Morning America shot a "Sneaky Teacher" episode at the Town Book Store, Alan's Orchard and Savory Spice Shop that included Patch.com's Chief Content Officer, Rachel Fishman Feddersen.
While a Downtown Westfield parking sign is visible in the background, should viewers be made aware that what they're looking at a neighboring town?
Reader Grace Rich thinks so. "That shopping area is Westfield not Clark. Nice video but that makes it misleading," she commented.
The five-minute segment will be aired nationally on the Fox Business Network and the Discovery Channel and regionally on CNN Headline News and possibly other news networks, "Today in America"'s Vice President of Production Jim Nicholas Veser told Patch in March. The exact airing dates and times depend on availability, but Veser says the segment will run about 20 times and always between 6 a.m. and 11 p.m.
“Many residents who grew up in Clark got married, bought houses here, wanted to be close to their parents and raise their children in this community,” says Clark Mayor Sal Bonaccorso in the infomercial. “As far as working here, it’s a great, clean, safe environment that’s accessible to the parkways, turnpikes and major roads throughout New Jersey. As far as play, Clark has an unbelievable recreation program that caters to our children right through our senior citizens, something we take a lot of pride in.”
Business Administrator John Laezza and Downtown Development Committee Member Robert Weisensee also appear in the video.
"It's great to do business in a small town environment close to New York City, because it has all the resources that are available to the metropolitan area, but has the feel of a small town, has the ability to get working people from the small town there," says Laezza in the video.
"As far as owning business here, the location can’t be better," adds Weisensee, who owns two downtown buildings seen in the video. "It’s a short train ride to Manhattan if I need to entertain guests or have business meetings there, and if the need arises to travel for work, Newark airport is a short car ride from here."
The infomercial was filmed in July, and Clark paid $19,800 in fees to produce and air it. It features shots of senior and rec activites, the Dr. Robinson Plantation, Clark's senior fitness center, Hyatt Hills golf course, Arthur L. Johnson High School, Clarkton Shopping Center and, of course, shopping in downtown Westfield.
"There’s certain licensing fees, and they were very up front and explained that to us," Bonaccorso told Patch in March. "But for this kind of big time exposure, that’s inconsequential. It's a show, that's the best way to describe it – it's not News 12 NJ. We listened to them and read up about all this and said, 'Absolutely.' It’s an honor to be considered."
To view the story in its entirety, click here.
What do you think of the finished product? Tell us in the comments.
- Stephanie Musat provided previously-ran reporting used in this story.