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Daily Voice Autos: Route 23 Auto Mall's Scott Barna Walks On The Wild Side

Scott Barna of Route 23 Auto Mall is as at home trekking the woods as he is helping customers learn the in's and out's of their new vehicle.
Scott Barna of Route 23 Auto Mall is as at home trekking the woods as he is helping customers learn the in's and out's of their new vehicle. Photo Credit: Contributed

BUTLER, N.J. -- For Scott Barna, President of Route 23 Auto Mall in Butler, it’s all about getting out there. When he’s not helping customers into their car of their dreams, you can find the lifelong North Jersey resident exploring the acres of forest surrounding his Ringwood home.

“I love hunting and just being outdoors,” said Barna. For Barna, getting his escape is as simple as driving one of his ATVs or dirt bikes right off his property and disappear into the vast wilderness.

Most mornings, he’s up at 4:30 a.m. to explore Ringwood State Park and Ramapo Mountains' nearly 4,500 acres that abut his property, in search of local wildlife and enjoying the unspoiled tranquility. Some mornings Barna treks with friends, others he has the morning mist all to himself. He admits, being alone in the woods can be a bit nerve-wracking at times. “At that hour every stump and log looks like a bear, every limb looks like a snake.”

As the President of Route 23 Auto Mall, Barna brings the same careful consideration he learned in the woods to helping his customers. His family has been a staple in the North Jersey car business for decades; the Barnas currently own and operate the Hawthorne family of dealerships across Bergen County. “I decided to spin away from GM," said Barna, on his decision to sell Fords and Nissans. “We’ve been able to grab stuff from different baskets and have become a well rounded organization.”

When buying a new car, Barna notices all customers seek the same thing: a friend. “Buying cars today is more difficult now than ever thanks to overwhelming information and advice,” said Brana. “People look for a friend to help them through the process.” At Route 23 Auto Mall, Barna and his team aim to be just that.

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