Kevin Chen of Bayonne was out fishing in New York Harbor on Wednesday when he saw something odd in the distance. So he steered his boat toward it. This was his first time fishing this season, and the last thing he expected was to come upon a dead fin whale floating in the water.
It had been dead for a while, he figured, because it had already started to stink.
“I never saw anything like it, only on TV and the internet,” he said later. “I didn’t expect to find it there.”
The location was south of Liberty State Park and north of Global Terminals and the Liberty Cruise Port.
Chen called the Bayonne Health Department, leaving a message.
While not a common event, whales do come into New York Harbor from time to time, said Jersey City Councilman Richard Boggiano. And they also die here.
Last year, a dead whale was struck by an outgoing ship, and later resurfaced in the Hudson River.
Live whales apparently are more abundant than the general public believes, and a not-for-profit in New York City even offers whale watching tours during warmer seasons.
There were a number of sightings in 2014, and several dead whales found in the area in 2015.
“The Army Corps of Engineers is responsible for dead whales,” Boggiano said. “They bring them over to the Caven Point (Army) base where they dissect them to see what might have killed them.”
When contacted, Jersey City officials said they will be notifying the city’s Department of Health, which will begin the process of recovering the whale.
Once the whale carcass becomes less buoyant as it decomposes, authorities will tow it out to sea and weigh it down so that it sinks and is not a hazard to boat navigation. This method may be the most environmentally conscious, as naturally deceased whales sink to the ocean floor, supporting a deep-sea ecosystem for 50 to 100 years. Whale and fish carcasses make up much of the snow flake-like particles that sink to the ocean floor, where deep sea creatures feed on them.
Hometown Fair this weekend
The 2017 Bayonne Hometown Fair will take place on Saturday, June 10, and Sunday, June 11. This will be the third annual fair in its current format. On Saturday, the fair’s hours will be from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. On Sunday, the fair’s hours will be from noon to 6 p.m. The fair will be along Broadway, from 21st Street to 25th Street, and on Del Monte Drive from 22nd Street to 24th Street. The 2017 fair will feature food, games, rides, vendors, and musical entertainment. Mayor James Davis said, “Last year’s fair was a great success. Dozens of organizations, businesses, entertainers, and volunteers are working to make sure that this year’s fair is even better. I look forward to seeing everyone have a great time at the 2017 Hometown Fair.”
Amusements will include a 55-ft. Ferris wheel, mechanical rides, and inflatable rides. There will be a charge for the mechanical rides. The inflatable rides will be free.
The main stage for the fair will be set up at 25th Street and Broadway by McDonald’s. A second stage will be set up at 21st Street and Broadway.
The opening ceremony on Saturday will take place at the 25th Street stage at 11 a.m. The starting event will include a Boy Scout flag ceremony and a rendition of the National Anthem by Artist Avenue Performers.
Musical acts and other performers will entertain on Saturday: Paul Addie; Vinnie Ferrone; Artist Avenue; La Fuerza Positiva; Dynamics Band; Blue Dawg Band; Joe Taino; DLC Trio; Altar Dog; Party of Five; Jillian Torres; Bailey School of Talent; Princess Jasmine and Elena of Avalon; Batman and the Joker; The Guitar Den Kids; Spanish Serenade; Beeman and Bannon; and Sequoia.
Musical acts and other performers will entertain on Sunday: Conclave Jazz Band; V Music Featuring Doc Watson; Evolution X Band; Princess Tiana and Moana; Superman and Wonderwoman; The Theater Group; Fusion Twirlers; Bob and Norm; The Detonators; and Strange Days.
There will be various games to raise funds for local nonprofit organizations. Basketball Challenge will benefit the Bayonne Friends of the Handicapped. Basketball Challenge will run on both Saturday and Sunday, and will be open to both children and adults who would like to try to make the most shots in a row. A dunk tank will be available for nonprofit organizations to use as a fundraiser. Interested organizations should contact the Bayonne Urban Enterprise Zone (UEZ) at (201) 858-6357 about using the dunk tank.
More than 60 vendors and organizations will take part in the fair, with tables along Broadway from 21st Street to 25th Street. The tables will feature food, merchandise, information about community organizations, and giveaways of various promotional items.
Police, fire, and medical vehicles will be available for visits by the public. A CarePoint Health van will offer free health screenings.
There is no rain date. In the event of rain, every effort will be made to continue or resume the fair on the scheduled days, as circumstances may permit.
State of the City Address
Mayor James Davis will issue his annual State of the City Address on Thursday, June 15, at 6 p.m. at Villa Maria at 417 Broadway. Registration starts at 5:30. Admission is $15, and free for members of the Bayonne Chamber of Commerce. Guests can also register online at bayonnechamber.org under the ‘events’ tab.
Staten Island nonprofit to host free homeownership workshop
The Neighborhood Housing Services of Staten Island (NHSSI) is bringing its “Sustainable Together” workshops to Bayonne City Hall in the coming weeks. Certified HUD- or Building Performance Institute-lead workshops, offer counseling and resources for financial assistance, such as grant programs, financial planning, energy assistance, home maintenance, and other information meant to help prevent foreclosure and promote responsible homeownership.
The workshops are free. The Homeownership Seminar will start at 6:30 p.m. on two Tuesdays, June 20, and June 27. The Foreclosure Prevention Seminar will start at 6:30 p.m. on two Thursdays, June 22, and June 29.
While workshop counseling is free, residents can sign up with the NHSSI Starbuyer Program for $50 for one-one-one counseling, with a $50 charge for credit report service that would carry through to time of home purchase.
Residents can visit sustainabletogether.org for more details. Workshops will be held in the City Council Chamber at City Hall on 630 Avenue C.
CarePoint Health Offering Diabetes Outreach Program June 15
CarePoint Health will hold another of its Diabetes Outreach Programs on Thursday, June 15 at 5 p.m. at the Mary Bethune Center, 140 Martin Luther King Jr. Drive in Jersey City.
The free seminar is offered to those with type 1 or 2 type diabetes. Dinner will be provided at the event.
Individuals who would like to attend are asked to register with Nancy Aleman, CarePoint’s
Director of Community Outreach, at Nancy.Aleman@CarePointHealth.org.
CarePoint is Bayonne’s local health care provider, offering a full continuum of care to residents. This comprehensive program often begins with the response of McCabe Ambulance, a CarePoint partner. It continues with care from the Bayonne Medical Center Emergency Department, diagnostic departments, and inpatient and outpatient services.
PSE&G to close coal-fired plants
PSE&G said it will close two aging power plants this year, one of which is in Jersey City. The coal-powered PSEG Hudson Generating Station power plant in Jersey City was at one point considered one of the most polluting in the nation.
The two plants currently burn coal rarely, switching instead to natural gas when put into service. But although the two plants have installed expensive pollution controls at a cost of nearly $2 billion to meet tougher environmental standards, the company still considers them less competitive with newer natural gas units.
Since 1906, The Hudson Generating Station in Jersey City has occupied 250 acres north of the intersection of Duffield and Van Keuren Avenues on the east bank of the Hackensack River.
In 2015, Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop joined the New Jersey Sierra Club and a diverse coalition of community leaders in the hilltop park overlooking the power plant to support President Obama’s plan that calls for a 32 percent reduction of carbon emissions from 2005 levels by 2030.
Coal-fueled plants also have a significant local impact on health, Fulop said, noting that these facilities are usually in impoverished areas and contributed to a number of respiratory ailments.
One report by a not-for-profit called “Toll from Coal” estimated that 531 people in New Jersey die each year from coal-related deaths. Coal also contributes to 445 hospital admissions yearly, and is connected to about 987 heart attacks.
NJSEA announces 2017 pontoon boat cruise and canoe trips
The New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority’s (NJSEA) 2017 guided pontoon boat and canoe tours of the Hackensack River are set torun through Tuesday, Sept. 26.
The season includes 37 trips that provide visitors an opportunity to see the Meadowlands up-close while learning about the storied history of the river and the area’s remarkable environmental renaissance over the past few decades.
“Our pontoon boat and canoe tours are a spectacular way to experience and gain a new appreciation for the amazing natural beauty and wildlife in the Meadowlands,” said Wayne Hasenbalg, President and CEO of the NJSEA. “Those who have glimpsed the Meadowlands only from surrounding highways or the window of a commuter train are truly in for a treat.”
The leisurely, two-hour boat tours and three-hour canoe outings reveal an entirely new perspective of the region that includes acres of preserved wetlands and a thriving ecosystem, all framed by a spectacular view of the Manhattan skyline.
An NJSEA guide will narrate the tours, point out wildlife and discuss the Meadowlands’ natural and manmade history along the way. More than 285 bird species have been documented in the Meadowlands, including 34 on New Jersey’s threatened, endangered and species of special concern lists.
Canoe excursions focus on the river’s wetlands, taking participants on a journey through a diverse array of vegetation and wildlife. Canoers learn the basics of salt marsh ecology and enjoy the magnificent scenery while paddling down creeks.
Registration sheets are also available at the NJSEA administrative offices and the Meadowlands Environment Center, both in DeKorte Park in Lyndhurst.
For more information, call (201) 460-4677 or email email@example.com. The full schedule of trips can be seen on the NJSEA website, http://www.njsea.com, under “2017 Events.”
Bayonne Class of 2007 Reunion
The Bayonne Class of 2007 will be celebrating its 10threunion on June 16 at the Knights of Columbus on 677 Avenue C in Bayonne from 8 p.m. to midnight. The event will feature an open bar, dinner buffet, and desserts. Guests are encouraged to come. Attendees should RSVP by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org and paying $70 to PaylPal.me/BHSClassof2007.