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The Raritan River runs through central New Jersey, starting with tributaries as far north and west as Morris and Hunterdon counties and emptying out into Raritan Bay. The Raritan River basin is the largest watershed completely within the boundaries of New Jersey and runs through Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Somerset, & Union Counties. Many towns, such as New Brunswick, Perth Amboy, and Bound Brook, grew up around the river, which was an early center of trade in colonial New Jersey. The Rutgers University anthem, "On the Banks of the Old Raritan," pays tribute to the muddy brown river.

Being located in the middle of the Garden State, the good ol' Raritan is, of course, loaded with pollutants. It is, however, home to hundreds of plant and animal species and it provides fresh water to 1.2 million people.

One time my dad and I took my dog for a walk in Johnson Park and the dog ran into the river and drank out of it. I think that's why he got cancer.


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