Home COVID-19 29 Hoboken + Jersey City News Stories You Missed This Week

29 Hoboken + Jersey City News Stories You Missed This Week

by Ainsley Layland
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As the close of 2020 approaches, a lot is happening in the community and as always, we’ve got you covered. Among the headlines — HBA launches store window decorating competition, Hudson Theatre Works announces virtual festival, Jersey City Police Department restarts off-duty security program + so much more — keep reading for all the news you missed this week in Hoboken, Jersey City, + beyond:

New York Waterway Accused of Dumping Waste into Hudson River

New York Waterway

Two former workers for New York Waterway filed a whistleblower lawsuit against the company this week in Newark federal court. They claim that employees would pump unfiltered waste from the toilets directly into the Hudson River at night. New York Waterway has denied the allegations. The New York Times has the full story.

Contemporary Mosque Breaks Ground in Jersey City

Jersey City Mosque Groundbreaking

In 2018 The Muslim Federation of New Jersey approved the plan to build a new mosque in Jersey City, and now it’s happening. The previous building at 530 Montgomery Street was demolished earlier this year, making way for the new structure in downtown. They broke ground last month and began construction. The plans for this new building also feature widened sidewalks, landscaping enhancements, and other improvements, according to Jersey Digs.

Smoothie Bar ‘Fruiti Fi’ Signage Spotted in Uptown Hoboken

fruiti fi hoboken

JK Therapy
Vepo Clean

Team Hoboken Girl spotted signage in uptown Hoboken {next to bwe kafe North End} for a business called ‘fruiti fi’ — which, according to its Facebook page, will be a juice and smoothie bar. We’ll share more details as they come in, but for now, you can visit the fruiti fi Facebook page here for updates.

Girl Scout Troop Teams Up for Hygiene Kit Drive

Girl Scout Donation

Zap Fitness

Girl Scout Troop 12022 is collecting supplies for hygiene kits in partnership with the City of Hoboken and the Hoboken Community Emergency Response Team. “We’re launching our hygiene care kit drive on Giving Tuesday, a global day of generosity, to help those who are less fortune during an especially difficult year,” said Dalia Duran, Narina Girotra, and Sienna Nemeth of Girl Scout Cadette Troop 12022.

“We invite our neighbors to join us in making a difference in someone’s life through this simple act of generosity.” Donations can be dropped off at the community center at 1301 Washington Street.

Young Republican Club Holds Gala at Maritime Parc, Tweets Unmasked Photos Drawing Ire from Local Politicians

Young Republican Gala

The Young Republicans Club held their 108th Annual gala this week, allegedly ignoring CDC regulations regarding mask-wearing and capacity rules for in-person events. The event was held Thursday night at a location in Liberty State Park the details of which were kept secret —  but were found out to be Maritime Parc, according to several sources.

Upon several tweets surfacing including Rep. Matt Gaetz posing for photos unmasked with other attendees — the event drew criticism from local politicians including Mayor Fulop and Governor Murphy.

joel fischer matt gaetz maritime parc jersey city

For more details, The New York Times has the full story.

Jersey City Via Completes Over 63,000 Rides

Jersey City Via

Photo credit: @ridewithvia

Earlier this year, Jersey City Via launched as a cheaper ride-share alternative. With more than 63,000 rides completed in the third quarter of 2020, numbers are still on the rise. “Despite launching right as the pandemic struck, Via Jersey City is breaking ridership records and connecting the exact communities we targeted with more affordable service to close transit gaps, increased access to jobs and education, improved connectivity, among countless other opportunities,” Jersey City Mayor Fulop said. NJ.com has the full story.

Hoboken Business Alliance Launches Holiday Window Decorating Competition

Hoboken Store Windows Competition

Business owners throughout Hoboken will be decorating store windows this holiday season as part of a new initiative. The Hoboken Business Alliance launched the “Window to Hoboken” competition on Dec 2nd  to support and highlight locally owned businesses.

“It’s no doubt that the holidays are going to feel different this year, so it’s important to bring joy to the community and continue to support local businesses any way we can,” shares Gregory Dell’Aquila, President of the Hoboken Business Alliance. “Through this contest, we’re able to shine a light on all the wonderful businesses lining the streets of Hoboken and bring attention and hopefully more customers to their storefronts.” Patrons are encouraged to share their favorites via social media and have the chance to win prizes too.

Taco Bell Opens in Hoboken

taco bell hoboken opening

After months of rumors of a Taco Bell coming to Hoboken — the chain has officially opened at 38 Hudson Street downtown. Read more on the opening here.

Jersey City Luxury Building Slated to Lose Tax Abatement

Tax Abatement Jersey City

A collection of 4 luxury buildings in Jersey City called The Beacon received a tax break in 2015. However, City officials say the owner has failed to provide employee records mandated by law. “This is a message to any developer that thinks they can circumvent their obligations to our residents. Our administration has moved the city away from the policies of previous mayors with regards to tax abatements,” Mayor Steve Fulop announced in a statement. The matter is expected to go before the City Council on December 16. For more details, go to NJ.com.

Hispanic Redwings Launches Kindness Campaign

Hispanic Redwings took to Twitter to announce the beginning of their annual campaign, the 25 Days of Random Acts of Kindness. Ideas from the campaign include putting a quarter in a parking meter, leaving a happy note for someone, and giving a compliment to a friend. Join the conversation by using #HobokenHSHCC24RACKS in social media highlighting random acts of kindness.

It’s Official — SantaCon 2020 Cancelled in Hoboken

Hoboken SantaCon Cancelled

Photo credit: @santaconevents

The festive and overcrowded annual event of SantaCon has been canceled. Hoboken Police Chief Ken Ferrante announced on Monday, November 30, “If bars try to take part in a SantaCon during this huge second wave of coronavirus that we’re having, if there are violations that day, they’re going to pay the price for it,” he said. “They’re going to get hit with sanctions.” SantaCon 2019 resulted in 20 hospitalizations and over 500 calls for service. Read more here.

Local Artists Paint Themes of Equality on Utility Boxes

Hoboken Utility Boxes

The newly formed Hoboken Arts Advisory Committee commissioned local artists to spruce up 15 of the plain utility boxes dotting Washington Street. They asked artists who live or work in Hoboken to submit proposals based on the theme of “equality and inclusion” and selected finalists from the submissions. Each design is wildly different and highlights the diversity, unity, love, and culture that Hoboken embodies. Click here to read thoughts from each artist.

Jersey City Library Appoints 10 Local Residents

Jersey City Library

As the largest municipal library in New Jersey, the Jersey City Free Public Library has appointed ten Jersey City residents to fill roles in programming, organizational structure, and youth services. The library system consists of the Main Library and nine branches where the newly appointed residents will serve as program coordinators, librarians, grant writers, branch managers, and more.

America’s Most Influential Pizza People Names 4 NJ Makers — including Tony Boloney’s own Mike Hauke

Influential Pizza List

With over 30 pizza shops in Hoboken alone, New Jersey is a hot spot for pizzerias and the creative minds behind each recipe. SmartPizzaMarketing.com recently released their list of the top 50 Most Influential People in Pizza and 4 of the finalists are from New Jersey; including Anthony Mangieri {Una Pizza Napoletana}, Dan Richer {Razza}, Mike Hauke {Tony Boloney’s}, and Michael Fitzick{Bakeria 1010}. Read more on NJ.com.

Hit-and-Run Leaves Man with Serious Injuries

Jersey City Hit Run

A 26-year-old man was hit at the intersection of Martin Luther King Drive and Wade Street while riding a dirt bike. Police arrived around 8PM and found the man with serious injuries. He was transported to Jersey City Medical Center where he was listed in critical, life-threatening condition. NJ.com has more details.

Jersey City Brings Back Off-Duty Security Program

Jersey City Police Off Duty

Photo credit: @jerseycitypolicedepartment

Two years ago, the Jersey City Police Department stopped the off-duty program due to corruption. Mayor Steve Fulop announced that the program has restarted with off-duty officers working at shopping malls and in hospitals as additional security, according to NJ.com.

Jersey City Administration Shine in Leadership + Progressive Efforts

Jersey City MEI Award

Mayor Fulop and Administration have earned a perfect score from the Municipal Equality Index, for the 8th year in a row. The MEI evaluates LGBTQ equality in municipal policy, law, and services. “We’ve worked to build a more inclusive and welcoming city, and have become known as such with one of the largest LGBTQ communities in New Jersey,” said Mayor Fulop. “From signing an executive order to make all municipal bathrooms gender-neutral to becoming the first in the state to add transgender healthcare coverage for city employees, our progressive efforts continue to elevate our diverse community, and receiving another perfect score reaffirms our commitment as we have become a national model for promoting equality.”

WE Mentors Collaboration Over Competition Panel Slated for December

WE Mentor Panel

Women Entrepreneurs of Hudson County has partnered with the WE Mentor Program to schedule their first-ever online panel. The WE Mentor program believes women are better when they work together. The program aims to instill camaraderie and collaboration between women in the workplace. This panel is an investment in the future of women who work, lead, and live in Hudson County. Interested parties can register here.

Hoboken Students Returning to School Monday Required to Be Tested

Hoboken School Testing

In a letter sent to parents Monday night, Hoboken Public Schools let families know that any students wishing to return to school on Monday, December 7 would need to be tested for COVID-19 this weekend. The school system has partnered with Riverside Medical Group to provide rapid testing.

Group Protests County Freeholder Romano at Malibu Diner

Anthony Romano held a fundraiser at Malibu Diner on 14th Street in Hoboken, when a group formed. Romano was one of six freeholders who voted last month in favor of renewing a controversial 10-year contract with ICE to house immigrant detainees at the Hudson County Correctional Facility in Kearny. Hudson County View has the full story, and you can read more on the ICE contract vote here.

Hoboken Halts Recreation Programs for the Winter

Hoboken City Hall

All city-run winter recreational programs have been postponed indefinitely for the winter, amid increasing cases of the coronavirus. “As we continue through the next stage of the second wave, and with cases surging in New Jersey, we have made the difficult decision to indefinitely postpone all city-run recreation programs for the winter, including all indoor sports and flag-football,” wrote Mayor Ravi Bhalla in an update on Sunday. “We have seen some recent COVID-19 cases coming from recreation leagues, and given the expected increase in cases, we feel it would be irresponsible from a health perspective to continue with indoor sports where social distancing is not practical.” Read the full article by Patch for more details.

Hoboken Mourns Resident Death in Second Wave of COVID-19

Hoboken Covid Death

In an announcement this week, Hoboken Mayor Ravi Bhalla announced the first death due to COVID-19 in several months. “Hoboken has an adjusted total of 1,467 known, confirmed cases since the beginning of the pandemic,” Mayor Ravi Bhalla said on Wednesday. “Sadly, I was informed of our first fatality in several months, a resident in her mid-60s. I extend my deepest condolences on behalf of the City to her family and friends during this difficult time. To the families of all 32 Hoboken residents we’ve lost – please know our hearts are with you and your loved ones.”

Hoboken Mayor Announces Virtual Tree Lighting

Hoboken Tree Lighting

Mayor Bhalla announced on Tuesday that this year’s annual Christmas tree lighting ceremony would be exclusively virtual. Residents can view the broadcast event on the City of Hoboken’s Facebook page. The time and date have not yet been announced.

Uptown Testing Center in Hoboken Relocates

Hoboken Testing

The COVID-19 testing center has moved two blocks away to Bijou’s warehouse for the winter, rent-free. The previous outdoor location administered 15,000 tests but due to weather conditions was not a long-term solution. The testing site is accessible via car or by foot, Patch has the details.

Hudson Theatre Works Continues Virtual Festival

Hudson Theatre Works

Every Wednesday at 6PM the Hudson Theatre Works will broadcast a new work on their YouTube Channel. Every Thursday they will post the same work to their Instagram account. The festival highlights new short plays by contemporary, local playwrights, per NJ.com.

Efes Mediterranean Grill Opens Jersey City Location

Efes Grill Jersey City

Photo credit: @efesmediterranean

Jersey City is home to a variety of cuisine but very few boast Turkish cuisine. Efes is opening a location in Jersey City and will bring the number up to 4 restaurants serving food like moussaka, kebabs, and manti dumplings. More info coming soon to Hoboken Girl.

Local Female Advertising Entrepreneur Opens Hoboken Office

Agency 6B

Photo credit: Agency6B

Vix Reitano started her company Agency6B in NYC in 2015. Five years later she is opening her first headquarters in Hoboken. Agency6B is a full-service advertising agency – they handle marketing strategy, content strategy, business development, OOH, and media buys, PPC and Websites, and social media marketing strategy, per her press release.

$10M Allocated for New Jersey City Waterfront Park

Jersey City Waterfront Park

Mayor Steven Fulop announced the final transformation of a 35-year-old toxic Superfund site into a 30-acre waterfront park in Jersey City. The City, in partnership with City Council, Jersey City Parks Coalition, the Hackensack Riverkeeper, and the Skyway Park Conservancy plan to invest $10 million to create public green space along the Hackensack River. The design includes a garden, waterfront walkway, and 502 trees.


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