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Saddle Brook Photographer Documents Township's Memories

JoAnn Brendel holds her flowers after being honored by Saddle Brook Mayor Robert White at the township's Women's History Month event.
JoAnn Brendel holds her flowers after being honored by Saddle Brook Mayor Robert White at the township's Women's History Month event. Photo Credit: Courtesy of JoAnn Brendel

SADDLE BROOK, N.J. — Many Saddle Brook memories over the years could not have been preserved as well without the help of JoAnn Brendel.

Brendel, 62, became known as the township's unofficial photographer as she snapped shots at many of Saddle Brook's events and gatherings.

"It's just about getting out there, taking pictures and hoping for the best," Brendel told Daily Voice. "It's great. Everybody loves it. They just say, 'Keep it coming.'"

Brendel's father practiced photography and she said she picked it up from him. She never took any formal classes but started when she was 14.

Before going on a trip to Disney World she invested in a good camera and learned how to use it. From there she started to enter various contests and was encouraged by her progress.

Brendel photographed weddings and did it as a service for the VFW and UNICO in Saddle Brook, leading her to other township affairs.

She now can be found at events for local churches, Scouts, politicians and more.

"If they need something, they call me," she said. "I'm there."

Brendel graduated from Saddle Brook High School and works in customer service for Movado, a watch company.

She was recently honored by the township as part of its Women's History Month event, being dragged in front of the camera for a change.

It marked one of many events in the spring, a busy but enjoyable time, she said.

"[Photography's] an expensive hobby, but a lot of fun," Brendel said. "I guess they say it's a great feeling when you do things for people. I just do it because that's what I like to do."

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