Greetings from Peralejos de las Truches, Spain.
The Freehold Borough council unanimously passed a resolution on Monday, June 17 stating that Freehold and Peralejos de las Truches, a town of about 175 in Spain, are now “twin” cities.
Bruce Springsteen performs with U2 in Times Square in 2014. (Photo: Jason Towlen/Staff Photographer (~ nfs))
They’re big Bruce Springsteen fans in Peralejos, and Springsteen is, of course, a native of Freehold.
“His message is received across the globe and we’re happy that this little town has reached out to Freehold Borough, his hometown, and we’re very happy to go through this and to recognize their appreciation for our hometown hero,” said Mayor Nolan Higgins to the USA TODAY NETWORK New Jersey.
A representative for the Spanish town contacted Higgins via email in April requesting a “twinning” designation. They named Springsteen an “Adopted Son” of Peralejos in 2014 and gave the Boss a plaque stating the recognition at a 2016 E Street Band concert in Madrid, said Jose Maria of Peralejos in his communications with Freehold.
“Most of us are following Bruce Springsteen since 1980 and his songs are with us everyday for more than 30 years ago,” Maria said.
The Spanish town hosts the annual “Greetings from Peralejos” Springsteen festival in August.
“What’s really cool about this is all of us from Freehold have a Bruce story or two,” said Councilman Kevin Kane. “I remember my first concert, going to see Bruce play at CBA (Christian Brothers Academy in Lincroft) and the next day going to Igor Records (in Freehold) to buy ‘Greetings from Asbury Park.’ It’s so cool that in this little town in Spain, his songs are part of the fabric of their lives and we know that his songs are deeply rooted in Freehold Borough.”
"Bruce Springsteen is the 'Tie that Binds' Freehold Borough and Peralejos de las Truches. Bruce Springsteen grew up in Freehold Borough and the young of Peralejos de las Truches grew up listening to his music," reads, in part, the proclamation.
An exhibit, “Springsteen: His Hometown,” is set for the fall at the Monmouth County Historical Association museum in Freehold. The exhibit will be the largest drawn to date from the artifacts of The Bruce Springsteen Archives and Center for American Music at Monmouth University.
Bruce Springsteen and Anthony Mason on Randolph Street in Freehold Borough during the taping of a CBS Sunday Morning segment featuring The Boss. (Photo: Courtesy of CBS)
The opening of the exhibit will coincide with the Boss’ 70th birthday (Sept. 23, 2019) as well as the centennial of Freehold Borough.
Interest from around the world in Springsteen’s connection to Freehold is high, said Freehold Borough historian Kevin Coyne.
“It’s because of the show (‘Springsteen on Broadway’),” Coyne said. “The show spoke so specifically about this town.”
“It’s really something to have this connection with this land (Peralejos) whose language we don’t speak, a country across the ocean from us. I think it’s really telling about the power of his work.”