The event was previewed at a press conference on Monday held by Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer, Weehawken Mayor Richard Turner, and Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop. Each was excited for a chance to underscore aspects of the Hudson River waterfront unrelated to flooding and storms.
“We deal with the bad issues when it comes to the river, this is a time to deal with the good issues,” said Turner.
True to its name, City of Water Day will offer a multiplicity of ways to get out onto the Hudson River. At Maxwell Place Park at 11th Street and Frank Sinatra Drive, the Hoboken Cove Community Boathouse will offer free lessons in kayaking and paddleboarding.
Those in Hoboken can take a free tour on a fireboat, sailboat, schooner, or tug leaving from various piers in the city. Though all of the tickets were reserved as of press time, unclaimed tickets will be given those in waiting in stand-by.
In addition, a free ferry between Maxwell Place Park, Paulus Hook in Jersey City and Governors Island will make five round-trip journeys throughout the day. No tickets are required, but all passengers must disembark at every stop.
On Governors Island, 20 teams will compete to be the fastest—or at least the last one floating—in the second annual Cardboard Kayak Race. The Stevens Institute of Technology team took the grand prize in 2013 and will compete again this year.
For those not ready to leave the landmass, Maxwell Place Park will host live music and food trucks. For children, there will be a fair with face painting, oversized Rubik’s Cubes and hands-on science projects.
Roland Lewis, president of the Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance, hopes the celebration will help bring about a permanent change in how Hudson County residents see the waterfront. “We dream of the day when every day would be City of Water Day, when every day we can use the waterfront for all sorts of good purposes,” said
“We are blessed with the Hudson River, the greatest harbor in the world, and we should use it in a lot better and a lot more fun and useful ways,” he added.
City of Water Day festivities run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday July 12th in Maxwell Place Park. More information about the event can be found at http://www.cityofwaterday.org/