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June 1, 2011

When you think of aging Americans, you likely think of their homes in warm climates like Florida, Arizona and North Carolina. That’s why it might come as a surprise that the oldest section of the country is the Northeast and that the median age of a New Jersey resident is 39 years old, according to the 2010 U.S. Census. That makes the Garden State's population the 11th oldest in the country. (Florida is 40.7, so it’s not as if the image of aging populations in warm climes is a complete misnomer.) Nationally, the median age is 37.2. But other states in the region -- Maine (42.7), New Hampshire (41.1), Connecticut (40), Pennsylvania (40.1) and Massachusetts (39.1) all have aging populations.

In New Jersey, 13.5 percent of the state's population, or 1.185 million residents, is over the age of 65, with 23.5 percent (2 million) under the age of 18. The largest cohort (35.4 percent or 3.1 million) is between the ages of 18 and 44, with the rest between the ages of 45 and 65 (27.6 percent or 2.4 million).

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