To encourage local shopping this holiday season, the city of Hoboken is offering up to four hours of free garage parking in municipal Garage B (28 Second St.), Garage D (215 Hudson St.), and the Midtown Garage (371 Fourth St.) from Dec. 7 through Jan. 1 for visitors who come to Hoboken to shop or dine.
To receive up to four hours of free garage parking, visitors must present, to the parking attendant, receipts totaling at least $25 on food and/or retail purchases from any Hoboken businesses that same day. Any time beyond four hours will be charged at the regular rate.
Over 130 people join mayor-elect’s transition team
Mayor-elect Ravi Bhalla announced on Dec. 6 via a press release that 134 people have volunteered their time to join his Transition Team, participating on various policy committees.
These participants include people from all corners of the city and supporters of each of the other mayoral candidates.
“Being able to draw on the experiences and recommendations of so many Hoboken residents who are dedicating their time because they care deeply about our city’s future will help me hit the ground running,” said Bhalla in the press release. “Our city is coming together as we all put Hoboken first.”
Bhalla added, “When I announced the formation of our Transition Team, I noted that the residents of Hoboken were the city’s ‘greatest untapped resource.’ I am pleased to see so many Hoboken residents have come forward to volunteer their time and energies to help move our city forward.”
Each policy committee is charged with preparing at least three substantive recommendations for implementation in 2018. Among the committee chairs are four of the other candidates in this year’s mayoral election and two newly-elected council members. The chair of the Transition Team is Phil Cohen.
A list of Transition Team members so far, by their committee assignment, can be seen at https://tinyurl.com/ycpr8euj.
NJ Transit pays Franco for land on Hoboken’s border
According to reports, NJ Transit paid $6.13 million to the family of a reputed mobster in a settlement for land the agency wanted for a tunnel project cancelled in 2010.
The settlement was with Township of Washington resident Carmine “Papa Smurf” Franco over the value of a 1.89-acre piece of land of the border of Hoboken and Weehawken that was condemned by NJ Transit for the ARC tunnel project canceled by Gov. Chris Christie in October 2010.
NJ Transit’s board approved the settlement with M & C Franco & Co. in August.
NJ Transit and the Franco family disputed the property’s value in court since 2010. In 2012, a Hudson County jury valued the land at $8.15 million. However, a state appellate court gave NJ Transit a victory in 2016 after the agency appealed the verdict.
The three-judge-panel ruled that the higher value wasn’t appropriate because it depended on the landowner winning approvals from two municipalities to change zoning to allow residential development on the property.
According to reports, Franco was was sentenced to a year in prison on racketeering charges in 2014 and released on June 11, 2015.
The Wallace PTO organized the event in which more than 120 attendees went on a tour of the world – experiencing the school community’s diverse cultures and traditions through sounds, tasty bites, entertainment, and activities.
Dishes from more than 40 countries and continents across the globe were enjoyed, including: Africa, China, Japan, Taiwan, Thailand, Philippines, India, Australia, Belgium, Netherlands, England, Scotland, Ireland, Greece, Turkey, Israel, and more.
Event attendees were also treated to singing performances from the Wallace Glee Club and Hoboken High School, Bhangra and Bollywood Dance by NYC Bhangra, Hip Hop by Studio L, Irish Step Dance by Garden Street Music and the Salsa by Diego Mesa of Athena Dance USA.
Local Hoboken restaurants and supermarkets also supported the event by donating dishes and food including ACME, Trader Joe’s, Anthony David’s, BIN 14, Frankie & Ava’s Italian Eatery, Giorgio’s Italian & French Pastry Shop, Karma Kafe, Keming Chinese, Yeung II Sushi Asian Cuisine, Miam Miam Empanadas and Bangkok City Thai Restaurant.
Organizers Ruchika Grover, Sophie Gelin and Kate McQuestin said the event was a fantastic celebration of Wallace School’s wonderful cultural diversity and inclusive community.
“We are thrilled that so many parents, children, teachers, administrators and businesses supported this special event for our school,” said Gelin. “When I moved to Hoboken from Belgium with my family, I was drawn to the community’s people, welcoming nature and town’s atmosphere. I believe you learn about diversity by being a part of a diverse community.”
The Wallace School Cookbook was also released in which there are nearly 100 loved family recipes from across the community.
To purchase a copy of the cookbook, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
100 percent of proceeds from the book’s sale will go to the Wallace PTO.
Christmas concert at Community Church of Hoboken announced
The Community Church of Hoboken located at the corner of Sixth and Garden streets will host its Christmas Concert on Dec. 10 at 2 p.m.
The 160-year old church has inspiring acoustics and there will be a sing-a-long section in the program. This event is designed for music lovers and kids.
Suggested contributions for children are $5 and $15 for adults. They can be made at https://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/3196115.
‘A Hoboken Tale: the Musical’ returns
Garden Street School of the Performing Arts has announced the Seventh Annual
Production of the original musical, “A Hoboken Tale.”
“A Hoboken Tale” is a holiday musical set in Hoboken reminiscent of the spirit of giving and supporting the community during the holidays and always.
The original musical was written by local resident Dan McLoughlin who has lived in Hoboken and has been a business owner in Hoboken for over a decade. All of the characters, songs and story are based on real Hoboken folks, stories and the Christmas Season. It’s a show that families love to go see and is part of their holiday tradition.
Members of the professional musical theatre company such as Howard Richman and Florence Pape from the Hudson Theatre Ensemble have been rehearsing under the direction of Broadway’s Anne Brummel (“Wicked”). Leading the cast is Tyler Hentz of the Radio City Christmas Spectacular, as well as Finn Douglas also from The Christmas Spectacular, “House of Cards,” and “The Blacklist.”
The show will open on Dec. 15 with special gest Ben Cameron who will lead a special question and answer session after the show.
Performances will take place at The Hudson School’s Theatre, 601 Park Ave., Hoboken on Dec. 15 at 7 p.m., Dec. 16 at 4:30 p.m. and 8 p.m., and Dec. 17 at 2 p.m.
Tickets are $18.00 online at https://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/3182237 or $22 at the door with general admission seating.
For more information go to www.AHobokenTale.com .
Local hospital donates laptops to nonprofit
CarePoint Health–Hoboken University Medical Center donated 10 laptops for students in the TRUE Mentors program with a presentation at the Hoboken Dual Language Charter School.
TRUE Mentors is a Hoboken nonprofit offering a one-to-one mentoring program which matches children aged 7 to 17 with adult community leaders.
Among the students who will benefit the most from the 10 Google Chromebooks are those in TRUE Mentors’ Teen Internship Program, according to TRUE Mentors Executive Director Katie Eades.
Between 15 to 20 students go through the teen internship program each year and can benefit from the CarePoint Health laptop donations. College applications and job searches will be among the computers’ uses.
Eades said her group partners with Mission 50, a Hoboken business center.
Hoboken University Medical Center Chief Operating Officer Ann Logan said she was gratified that the hospital could assist the youth by making the donations.
CarePoint is Hoboken’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 treatment from the Hoboken University Medical Center Emergency Departments, diagnostic departments, and inpatient and outpatient services.
Hoboken Police Department will crack down on impaired driving
Hoboken law enforcement officials will crack down on drivers impaired by alcohol or drugs as part of the annual end of year “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” statewide campaign.
The crackdown started Dec. 8 and continue through Jan. 1. Local and state law enforcement officials will conduct saturation patrols looking for motorists who may be driving while intoxicated.
The national Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over effort aims to raise awareness about the dangers of impaired driving through a combination of high-visibility enforcement and public education. Last year, 20 percent of all motor vehicle fatalities in New Jersey were alcohol-related.
Law enforcement agencies advise people to take mass transit or a taxi or have a sober friend to drive them home, spend the night where the party is being held, to contact law enforcement if they see an impaired driver, and to always buckle their seat belts. They also suggest that instead of traveling on foot if intoxicated, a person should call a cab or have a sober friend pick them up and escort them to their door. They also urge people to not let a person who has been drinking get behind the wheel.
Hoboken’s American Legion Post 107 announces fundraiser
The American Legion Post 107 will hold a special fundraising event on Thursday, Jan. 11 to help raise funds for their new center and housing for homeless veterans.
The event will be held at the Kolo Klub at 1422 Grand St. from 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. and feature live music, open bar, and raffle prizes, and a silent auction. Some of the items which will be auctioned include a flat screen TV, 2018 tickets to New Jersey Devils, New York Giants, New York Jets and New York Yankees games, Military paraphernalia, and restaurant certificates.
Tickets are $85 and can be purchased by visiting https://www.eventbrite.com/e/american-legion-building-homes-for-heroes-tickets-41008428313?aff=erelexpmlt .
Corporate donations are also being accepted and sponsorship opportunities are available.
All of the proceeds from the ticket sales and auction will go towards a $1 million capital campaign for the development of a new facility at the American Legion’s existing site at 308 Second St. The new facility will provide housing for homeless veterans and support services.
Hoboken’s American Legion Post began its demolition of its existing building last week and has received federal and county funds for the repair and reconstruction.
The post also has a GoFundMe page where people can donate which has already raised over $1,500.
It can be reached at https://www.gofundme.com/american-legion-post-107.
The all-volunteer organization is now focusing on generating additional funds to complete its vision for a new and revitalized American Legion Post that fully serves the men and women who have served in the armed forces.
Do you have a piece of creative writing in the works, or a story in your head?
Reporter editor and published novelist Caren Lissner is bringing her one-shot writing class to Little City Books in Hoboken again in January. Do you have an idea for a novel, story, memoir, essay, or script, or have something partly written but don’t know the next steps? You can bring up to two pages, double spaced (500 words) for critique and publication advice, or just sit in on the class and participate in the discussions.
The next “Get It Out” class takes place Tuesday, Jan. 23, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the book store, located four blocks from the Hoboken PATH/light rail station. There’s a nominal fee for those bringing work to read, and a lower fee for those who just want to sit in and participate in the discussion.
“There are so many ways to get published these days,” said Lissner. “Anyone who’s working on a piece of writing is a writer. They shouldn’t be shy about getting their work out there.”
Lissner’s humorous first novel, Carrie Pilby, was published in 2003, sold 74,000 copies worldwide, and was released as a movie this year (currently airing on Netflix). She has also published both serious and humorous writing in the New York Times, Atlantic.com, McSweeney’s, Harper’s, LitHub, and National Lampoon. Read more of her writing and advice on carenlissner.com.
Those with questions can reach her via her website. The link to sign up for the class is http://www.littlecitybooks.com/event/get-it-out-writing-and-publishing-workshop-caren-lissner (as a reader or as an auditor), or stop by Little City Books at 100 Bloomfield St., corner of First and Bloomfield, Hoboken. (201) 626-READ.
Donate clothes for adults, boys, girls as part of domestic violence drive
Allstate agency owners from across New Jersey are coming together to host a supply drive to benefit the New Jersey Coalition to End Domestic Violence (NJCEDV). The donations will support the nonprofit’s mission to provide services to help end domestic violence and financial abuse throughout the state.
Now through Dec. 11, the public can participate by donating new winter coats, hats, gloves and scarves for women, boys and girls. A complete list of most-needed supplies can be found here: bit.ly/AllstateFoundationTrenton. Through their volunteer efforts, each participating Allstate agency owner will secure a $1,000 Allstate Foundation Helping Hands grant. The National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV) will accept the grants and distribute the funding to local domestic violence nonprofits. The dates of the donation drives align with the 16 days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence campaign, which NNEDV supports.
The following Hudson County Allstate locations are collecting items:
4914 Kennedy Blvd., West New York
315 Broadway, Bayonne
1317 Paterson Plank Road, Secaucus
Contact Natalie Terchek at 312-558-1770 for more information.
Free diabetes self-management workshop series offered in Hoboken
Quality Insights Quality Innovation Network, supported locally by Healthcare Quality Strategies, Inc. (HQSI), is partnering with Columbian Towers to provide free diabetes workshops as part of the Everyone with Diabetes Counts (EDC) program.
The EDC program is a national initiative of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).
The program offers free self-management workshops that are open to people with Medicare who have diabetes as well as their family members and caregivers.
The free diabetes self-management workshops are designed to educate individuals about diabetes and help them learn how to manage it and take control of their health through various tools, behavior modification, and coping techniques.
Participants will learn about preventing complications, healthy eating, exercise, how to deal with stress and difficult emotions, managing medications, effective communication with healthcare providers, and much more.
This free six-week workshop will be offered at Columbian Towers at 76 Bloomfield St. Workshops are on Thursdays from Jan. 11 to Feb. 15 from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
All attendees must register by the second workshop session. Each participant will receive complimentary literature and resources.
For more information or to register for the workshops, call Dorothy at (973) 678-7836.
Visit www.qualityinsights-qin.org to learn more about the program.
Liberty Science Center planetarium now largest in hemisphere
When the new planetarium at the Liberty Science Center in Jersey City opens this Saturday, Dec. 9, it will be the largest in the Western Hemisphere and the fourth largest in the world. Formerly, largest planetarium in the hemisphere was the Hayden Planetarium at the Museum of Natural History in Manhattan.
Neil deGrasse Tyson, director of the Manhattan planetarium, told the New York Times that the new planetarium has advantages due to greater transportation access for NJ school groups. If the new facility has a top-of-the-line projector, he added, “That’s great.” Paul Hoffman, president and CEO of the Liberty Science Center responded that his planetarium has 10 projectors.
The LSC planetarium will officially open this weekend. It boasts 88 million pixels, an 89-foot diameter screen that can project 280 trillion color possibilities. At least 250,000 school children are expected to visit the planetarium annually.
The center, officially the Jennifer Chalsty Planetarium, is named after a former high school teacher who donated $5 million for its construction.