• LepreCon Updates, New Hoboken Pizza Spot, + More

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    Hello, Hudson County! It’s been another busy week around the area. This week, a landmark structure at Steven’s Institute is coming down in the name of preservation, a local restaurant’s chef was recognized in what’s known as the “Oscars of the food world,” LepreCon happened, and Hoboken Girl hosted its social media detox week. Once you finish reading through the top news posts of the week, ditch that device and get some much-needed time unplugged. All this and more is below in your weekly roundup — here are the top news stories from Hoboken and Jersey City this week:

    New Pizza Shop on Jeffferson Street Opens 

    Photo: Shweta Naray Gursahani

    Hoboken officially has another pizza shop. Called “When in Rome” — one is located at 1139 Jefferson Street and is delivery and takeout, with a few tables. They are also on Seamless and Grubhub.  Thanks to reader @shwetagursahani for the tip!

    LepreCon Sees Less Arrests, Calmer Event This Year

    Only 8 bars participated in “official” LepreCon this year, and it showed. It could be the weather {as it was a snowy morning}, or it could be the crackdown on pub crawls… but it was quite the quiet event, all things considered. Either way, we appreciate the Hoboken PD and other emergency services for keeping the city safe, and thanks to Chief Ferrante for the Twitter updates!

    Steven’s Institute Gatehouse Is Coming Down

    stevens institute gatehouse

    The gatehouse — the final remaining structure of the original Stevens estate — is currently in the process of being disassembled. But don’t worry — it won’t be gone forever. After the disassembling process, specialists will be preserving the unique stone, then restoring it before it returns to campus.

    Originally built in 1835 by rocks quarried on site, the gatehouse was the original main entrance to the Stevens Castle {which became the Institute}. Though the gatehouse is the oldest structure on campus, representatives have chosen to deconstruct it, preserve, and restore its stone because of an accident that occurred last fall. A delivery truck slammed into the gate, causing the structure to buckle.

    “After the accident, we brought in a structural engineer who determined that the arch was structurally unsound and needed to be disassembled for safety reasons,” says Senior Project Manager Richard Snyder, who works in Stevens Design + Construction Department. “It’s important to note that the age of the arch is such that it is purely a masonry structure — there’s no steel or reinforcement of any kind, which is also very unusual in this day and age.”

    Snyder continues, “The gatehouse’s presence on campus can’t be overstated; it’s historically significant. It’s architecturally significant as a traditional form of architecture and, more importantly, it’s historically significant as the last remaining structure of the Stevens family estate and the traditional entryway to the university. It’s symbolic.”

    Cucharamama Chef Receives ‘Outstanding Chef’ Award

    Cucharamama

    Each year, the James Beard Foundation {known as the “Oscars of the food world”} doles out awards for outstanding work in the food industry and this year, a Hoboken staple made the semifinals.

    The James Beard Foundation announced Maricel Presilla of Cucharamama in Hoboken is a semifinalist in the “Outstanding Chef” category. Mayor Ravi Bhalla congratulated Presilla on Twitter and while Cucharamama was the only Hoboken eatery to make the semifinalist list, Dan Richer of Razza Pizza Artigianale in Jersey City also received a semi-finalist nomination for Best Chef: Mid-Atlantic.

    Congratulations, all!

    Run a Community Group? Hoboken Now Providing CDBG Funding

    hoboken jersey city events 1

    Do you run a community group? The City of Hoboken has announced it is now accepting applications for the Community Development Block Grant Program {known as the CDBG} Year 2019. The goal of the CDBG is to provide funding to eligible programs and projects sponsored by public agencies or not-for-profit organizations. The funding is provided by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development.

    Hoboken receives an annual allocation of $1,000,000 each Program Year since becoming an Entitlement Community back in 2015. With Public Service Funding capped at 15% of total funding, approximately $150,000 is available to organizations that provide services such as child care, after-school programs, health care, family planning, and assistance to the homeless.

    Applications are due by 4:00PM on Friday, March 22nd, 2019. Funds will be available to the selected applications as early as July 1st. Interested applicants can request an application from Irene Woodward via email at iwoodward@triadincorporated.com or in person during business hours (9:00AM – 4:00PM) at the Hoboken Planning and Zoning Office, 94 Washington Street, 2nd floor, Hoboken. All questions should be directed via email to Ms. Woodward, or phone during business hours at 856-690-9590.

    Jersey City Council Encouraging Liberty State Park Protection Act

    statue of liberty climber

    The Jersey City Council is encouraging state lawmakers to pass the Liberty State Protection Act. Also known as the LSPA, the bill has been introduced with the intentions of halting private development at the Park, which is located in Jersey City.

    “It’s time once and for all to draw a line and say the park belongs to all of us and take it off the chopping block,” park advocate Sam Pesin said.

    The 1,200-acre state park has long been suggested as the site for various commercial ventures. Pesin, however, has dedicated his life to preserving Liberty State Park and waylaying commercial ventures at all costs.

    The county freeholder board is now scheduled to vote on a similar resolution that will also encourage the passage of the Liberty State Park Protection Act.

     

    New Online Store amica-life Open for Business

    amica life

    Amica-life is officially open for business online. Offering the same products as its clinic, the new online store a range of wellness and health products ranging from essential oils, herbal teas, smudge sticks, and more.

    New Bike Stations Added to Park and Monroe Streets in Hoboken

    additional jersey bikes

    Bikers, rejoice! Jersey Bike Stations have been added to three new locations throughout Hoboken. Now bikers can hop on {or off} at 1600 Park, 401 Monroe Street, and 12th Street and Adams Street.

    Need a guide to biking? Here you go.

    Hoboken School Raises $18K for Leukemia + Lymphoma Society

    salvatore r elementary school

    {Photo courtesy of Google Maps}

    Hoboken Girl would like to shout-out and congratulate Salvatore R. Calabro Elementary School on Park Avenue in Hoboken for going above and beyond its target fundraising goal. This year, with a modest goal of raising $300 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Calabro Elementary —  a school with less than 150 students — raised over $18,000 on behalf of the cancer-fighting society.

    Believe it or not, the fundraiser only just started and already, the goal has been incredibly surpassed. The fundraiser continues into April. Donations are tax-deductible and support LLC research, patient services, advocacy, public and professional education, community services, and more. If you’d like to learn more or find out how to donate, you can do so here.

    Special thanks to Francine Yu, a teacher at Calabro, who reached out to HG to let us know of Calabro’s amazing fundraising efforts.

    Jersey City Council to Hear Proposal for New Homeless Shelter

    Saint Lucy’s Church in Jersey City might get a makeover. Earlier this week, the Jersey City Council met to give final approval to a developer’s plan to build a new homeless shelter for St. Lucy’s. The plan would have St. Lucy’s increasing in eightfold.

    According to the plan and renderings, a residential housing tower would be constructed on the former St. Lucy’s church property on Grove Street. The church exterior will remain, but the new tower would be home to 443 units. The goal of increasing St. Lucy’s density in eightfold is to save the overcrowded homeless shelter and expand it, without having to move it downtown. The new shelter would be five-stories tall and across the street from the current building. The project would cost $191 million, for which the developer — Claremont Companies — would not receive tax abatement.

    “We’re getting a new homeless shelter,” Business Administrator Brian Platt said. “It’s the only one we have. It’s probably the only shelter we’re all going to see built in the city in our lifetime.”

    Heading the opposition for the renovation project is Councilman Rich Boggiano, who claims St. Lucy’s buildings are historic and would prefer to see them preserved. St. Lucy’s opened back in the late 19th Century, then closed in 1986. The school building was reopened as a shelter for homeless people and people living with HIV/AIDS that same year.

    Hoboken Announces Initiative to Improve Parking

    hoboken parking meter

    As of March 4th, Hoboken is launching parking initiatives that are meant to improve residents’ {and visitors} parking experience. Approved by City Council back in 2018, the initiatives strive to improve the overall parking experience by focusing on on-street parking availability in business districts.

    A key component of this new initiative is the “virtual” visitor permit. Visitors must purchase and activate permits online in order to park in Hoboken. Another staple of this initiative is reducing daily garage parking prices, known as the “Daily Debit Program.”

    But perhaps most importantly of all, the City of Hoboken has announced bus service via the HOP bus is officially free for all beginning March 4th.

    High School Students in Jersey City Arrested for Hacking Grades

    school classroom

    Four students at a Jersey City high school have been accused and arrested for allegedly hacking into the school’s computer system and changing grades. According to NJ.com, a Dickinson High School district source confirms these four individuals are accused of using the usernames and passwords of staff members to gain access into the school’s grading system. While it’s unclear how many staff members’ accounts were hacked, school officials sent out an email to Board of Education members, notifying them that not only had four students been charged in connection with the misconduct, but the grades that were changed also weren’t necessarily those four students’ own grades.

    After several teachers noticed incorrect grades recorded, they corrected the grades and then reported the incidents.

    Word has it that both police and district officials were able to trace the grade altering, therefore identifying the four students involved in the scheme.

    Alfalfa Opens Full-Time Brick-and-Mortar Salad Shop in Hoboken

    alfalfa open hoboken

    Eat Alfalfa is the newest restaurant to put down healthy roots on Washington Street in Hoboken as of this week. Alfalfa, which has long been a staple of the Garden Street Farmers Market, is no stranger to Mile Square. In fact, the locally-founded salad startup appeased salad-lovers back in December with a pop-up shop in Schnackenberg’s. Now, it’s taking over that very spot on Washington Street for good. Along with salads, Alfalfa offers donuts {even one named after its predecessor, Schnackenberg’s}, locally-roasted fair trade coffee, breakfast burritos, and more. Check out our full review of the new salad spot here.

    New Italian Restaurant The Franklin Coming to Jersey City Heights

    franklin jersey city

    An Italian restaurant called The Franklin is coming to the Heights in Jersey City. On the corner of Franklin and New York Avenue, The Franklin has been updating its official Instagram account with its progress and according to Jersey City Upfront, is expected to open in two weeks.

    Hoboken Wellness Crawl Happening April 28 + Tickets Go On Sale March 4th!

    Hoboken Wellness Crawl Jersey City Fitness

    If you have an interest in all things health, beauty, food, fitness, and fun, then mark your calendars because the highly-anticipated event of the season is happening Sunday, April 28th. Tickets for the third annual crawl go on sale March 4th at 12:00PM. The link for tickets can be found here, but they won’t be available till Monday at that time. Last year VIPs sold out within 30 minutes, so make sure you get right on it!

    If you haven’t heard, the Hoboken Wellness Crawl is a celebration of all things health and wellness in Hoboken and Jersey City. Each year, we line up the best local businesses to bring you a sampling of the amazing health, beauty, food, and fitness offerings in town. Last year, more than 90 local businesses participated in the event and nearly 1,000 crawlers came.

    For more info, you can learn all about the Hoboken Wellness Crawl 2019 here.

    Pedestrian Deaths Are on the Rise, Nationally

    According to the Governors Highway Safety Association, the number of pedestrian deaths is on the rise. Not just in Hoboken, Jersey City, or New Jersey, but nationally.

    The GHSA is a national organization and according to the report, the year 2018 saw the highest number of pedestrian deaths in nearly 30 years. The data shows that 6,227 pedestrians were killed in crashes last year. That’s a 4% increase in comparison to 2017 data.

    In New Jersey alone, the number of pedestrian deaths increased by 9%. The first six months of 2018 saw 67 deaths, the second half of the year saw another 73.

    It’s no wonder that Hoboken and Jersey City are rolling out pedestrian safety initiatives that aim to eradicate all traffic-related deaths and injuries by the year 2030.

    “We must always prioritize the safety of our families and children as they utilize our City streets,” Mayor Bhalla has said of Hoboken’s pedestrian safety initiative, titled Vision Zero. “This initiative represents a critical step forward in increasing pedestrian safety in Hoboken, and I thank Chief Ferrante and the Hoboken Police Department for making it a high priority. I look forward to working with HPD and our community to introduce additional safety initiatives in 2019 to prevent any and all traffic-related injuries or fatalities.”

    Hoboken Girl Hosts Unplugged Week: Social Media Detoxing

    Unplugged Week

    It might be out of character, but we went unplugged last week. That’s right — Hoboken Girl hosted a social media detox week, appropriately dubbed Unplugged, with daily social media reduction challenges. The fun of going screen-free, however, isn’t over. Although our official last day {Sign-Off Saturday} happened onMarch 2nd, HG is challenging you to take a much-needed break from social media whenever and as often as you can, and we may host this again soon since it was so well-received. Think you can do it? It *is* possible, promise. Get all the necessary deets you need to participate here.

    Formalwear Drive + Community Sale is Coming Up March 30th

    — Donate those Old Dresses/Suits ASAP!

    formalwear drive 2019

    Now through March 28th, Hoboken Girl will be accepting dress and formalwear donations at different drop-off points throughout the city for an annual Formalwear Drive + Community sale on March 30th from 11:00AM-3:00PM at 124 Grand Street, 1st floor. There are currently seven drop-off locations across Mile Square {JaneDo, WestSide Realty, Athleta, Galatea, Boutique Realty JC, World of Wonder Daycare, and Boutique Realty Hoboken}, items accepted range from long and short formal dresses, men’s suits, ties, and more. Here’s more info.

    Have any news tips? Email hello@hobokengirl.com to let us know — we appreciate it.

    Have you joined our Facebook group yet? Request here to gain access to even more local tips, and connect with fellow Hudson County residents.


    Written by:

    Steph Osmanski is a freelance blogger and brand consultant who specializes in health and wellness content. Her words have appeared on Life & Style, In Touch, Seventeen, Parents, and more. She is pursuing her MFA in Creative Writing at Stony Brook Southampton.


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