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21 Hoboken + Jersey City News Stories You Missed This Week

by Ainsley Layland
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A week of life in Hoboken + Jersey City means there is plenty of news to catch up on. Among the local headlines — a new hidden spa has opened in Hoboken, Blo Blow Dry Bar re-opened in Jersey City, three County Prep High School students won first place at the statewide Skills USA competition, and so much more. Keep reading for all the news you missed this week in Hoboken, Jersey City, + beyond.

Options for Hoboken Pop-Up Park Discussed

pop-up park

Hoboken’s Director of Environmental Services Jennifer Gonzalez presented two design possibilities for a new popup park just west of the Southwest Resiliency Park, per the Hudson Reporter.

It would be on block 10, a parking lot owned by Academy Bus which the city has moved to purchase for $11 million to expand the Southwest Resiliency Park by an additional acre. While the city plans to go through a formal community design process over the next several months to design the park’s expansion, it also plans to allow the public to use the space this summer by installing a temporary popup park similar to how the city used the Northwest Resiliency Park site before construction on the permanent park began. The two options offer different layouts including a playground, pickleball courts, shade structures, and a community garden.

A New Hidden Spa has Opened in Hoboken: 120degreesf

hidden spa

There’s something oh-so-exciting about the speakeasy-vibe experience — a hidden spot that no one is quite aware of, having a secret code or password to enter and enjoying the feeling of exclusivity. And in Hoboken, we’ve found just that: a hidden spa called 120degreesf. Click here to find out more about 120degreesf — a new day spa located at 230 Madison Street in Hoboken.

Olivia’s: A New Dining + Cocktails Spot Now Open in Hoboken


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Garden Street in Hoboken has GreekTown, Mario’s, Moran’s, and now, another restaurant opening its doors Friday, April 30th at 1038 Garden Street. What used to be the location of the former Sasso’s Liquors and Delicatessen, is now an eatery called Olivia’s. Click here to learn all about Olivia’s, a new dining + cocktails spot in Hoboken.

Approved 186-Unit Tower in Jersey City to House Hotel + Banquet Hall

The Jersey City planning board has unanimously approved the plans for a 30-story building in Journal Square, per Jersey Digs. The building would revitalize three lots including the area currently occupied by a Pep Boys. The site is close to the historic Stanley Theater and the newly renovated 2 Journal Square building.

Uptown + Downtown Hoboken Farmers Markets to Return this Spring

This Spring, Hoboken residents can expect two of the farmer’s markets to reopen. The Uptown Farmers Market located under the 14th Street viaduct will be open every Saturday 9AM to 2PM starting May 1st. The Downtown Farmer Market will open Tuesdays 2PM to 6PM every Tuesday starting June 1st, located on Garden Street between 4th and 5th Streets.

2nd Annual New Play Festival to Open at Jersey City Theater Center

The 2nd Annual New Play Festival will be shown virtually through the Jersey City Theater Center this year, per NJ.com. The show will feature eight short plays and two full-length plays focused on messages of healing. The works come from the U.S., Canada, and New Zealand. Showing on Thursdays beginning with Ken Levine’s Fractured Ferry Tale on May 6th, this event is part of the New Jersey Theatre Alliance’s 2021 Stages Festival.

99 Hudson Street Penthouse Nets Highest JC Condo Sale Price Ever


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The 79-story building located at 99 Hudson Street in Jersey City recently became the location of the highest sale price for a condo in Jersey City’s real estate history, per Jersey Digs. The company in charge of the building, China Overseas America, announced that a 2,473-square-foot condo sold for $3.9 million. Believe it or not, the residence doesn’t even have walls as it was sold in a “white box” condition meaning the buyer has a completely blank canvas on which to add their personal flair. The space includes 1,167 square feet of private outdoor space as well. The previous holder of the record was the penthouse at 77 Hudson Street which sold for $3.4 million several years ago.

12 NJ Bars + Restaurants Broke COVID-19 Regulations in Same Week

NJ bars violations

A bar located in Wildwood had its license to serve alcohol suspended for the entire 2021 Summer following repeated violations of the executive order regarding capacity limitations, while 12 others are facing penalties this week, per Patch.

“I certainly look forward to our ability to increase indoor dining capacities in the near future, but until that time, we want to make sure that our dining establishments, though, {that} they can go forward to maximize their outdoor footprints,” Murphy said.

24-Story Building Approved Near Liberty State Park

johnston avenue

Photo credit: Google Maps

The planning board of Jersey City approved a plan to build a 24-story mixed-use development in the area along 262 Johnston Avenue in Jersey City. The lot currently features a one-story industrial building and is located close to the Liberty State Park Light Rail station, per Jersey Digs. The plans have been in the works since Summer 2020.

Blo Blow Dry Bar Reopens in Jersey City

blow dry

“Throughout my adult life, I often dreamt about owning my own beauty business,” says Kari Valcich. That’s why, after returning from maternity leave, she pivoted careers, leaving her job as an entertainment marketing executive to chase her passion. Valchich now owns three Blo Blow Dry Bars, one in Franklin Lakes, New Jersey, one in Greenwich, Connecticut, and her newest one in Jersey City. Click here to learn more about Blo Blow Dry Bar, located at 160 Morgan Street in Jersey City.

County Prep High School Students Win 1st Place

county prep school

Three County Prep High School students won first place at the statewide Skills USA competition for their project “Acts of Kindness”, highlighting their efforts to bring their school community together during the COVID-19 pandemic. Aleena Choudhry {Bayonne}, Fajrhafza Sohail {Jersey City}, and Varsha Santhosh Kumar {Jersey City} presented their project in the community service division. Over the span of three weeks, students at the school performed small acts of kindness like writing a letter of gratitude to a teacher or donating canned goods to a local food bank. Over 1,000 acts of kindness were recorded as part of the project.

“Since the beginning of the pandemic, the Hudson County Schools of Technology has encouraged our district community to find creative and innovative ways to come together in a safe and meaningful way,” said Superintendent Amy Lin-Rodriguez. “Aleena, Fajrhafza and Varsha have done an incredible job showing that one small act of kindness can make a big difference, especially during these challenging times. We are incredibly proud of their hard work and wish them continued success this spring. Their project is a true testament that we are all #HCSTstrong.”

Covid-19 Vaccine Appointments Now Available to Hoboken on First-Come, First-Serve Basis


The Hoboken Health Department has made vaccine appointments available to Hoboken residents and employees on a first-come, first-serve basis. There are 265 appointments available through Wednesday, May 5th at Carepoint. To sign-up for an appointment, CLICK HERE.

You can also leave a message with your contact information and address to schedule an appointment by calling the Hoboken Community Emergency Response Team at 201-420-5621. A member of CERT will call back to assist with an appointment.

Roig Collection + Giving Gallery Expands to Washington Street

roig collection hoboken

The Roig Collection has successfully been on the walls of the W Hotel for the past three years. Looking to branch out further, local art lovers can now find Ricardo Roig’s work on Washington Street.

“Our new gallery is located at 636 Washington Street and we have a backyard for dinner parties! We will be partnering with a local favorite catering company and wine store to host unique events and parties to our Art loving community,” Roig told Hoboken Girl. Stay tuned for more details on these events.

SPEAR Physical Therapy Opening Hoboken Clinic


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SPEAR Physical Therapy, based in New York City, is opening a new clinic in Hoboken. The clinic will be breaking ground and installing signage on Washington Street in the next few weeks. The grand opening can be expected in a few months.

Hoboken Joins Regional Coalition of Leaders on Flood Reduction Initiative


The City of Hoboken is joining the Resilient Northeastern New Jersey initiative to implement flood risk reduction strategies. Hoboken is joining a coalition of stakeholders seeking to improve long-term regional environmental and economic resilience.

To ensure an equitable approach to resilience, the project team is seeking input, information, and recommendations from residents, workers, businesses, and organizations regarding their own experiences with flooding and storm events.

“As a coastal community, Hoboken knows first-hand the impacts of storm surge and heavy flooding events,” said Mayor Bhalla. “While we continue to make major strides in creating a more resilient city through our Rebuild by Design Project and comprehensive flood mitigation strategies, we are always striving to do more. The partnership we are entering into with key stakeholders and cities through Resilient Northeastern New Jersey will allow Hoboken to take a regional approach to adopt other best practices, and also share our successes with other communities as well.”

Art Fair 14C Merges with Art House Productions

Art Fair 14C has merged with Art House Productions effective April 28th in order to expand the visual arts opportunities available in the Jersey City community. Both groups will be bettered structured thanks to the merger and be able to provide high-quality arts programming. Art Fair 14C Founder, Robinson Holloway, will join the Art House Productions Board of Trustees.

Art Fair 14C is a Jersey City-based visual arts non-profit with a mission to expand opportunities for artists and arts businesses by featuring more than 50 exhibitors from around the world. Art House Productions is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization committed to the development and presentation of the performing and visual arts in Jersey City. Art House Productions presents theater, performing, and visual arts festivals, art exhibitions, and provides adult and youth art classes.

“We’ve long been fans of Art House Productions and its commitment to artistic excellence and community engagement,” Art Fair 14C founder Robinson Holloway said. “A merger can be a business tool for growth, and it’s one that not many nonprofits use. Art Fair 14C and Art House Productions have complementary missions that serve both artists and audiences, and I think that in combination we can become Jersey City’s strongest and most dynamic arts organization.”

Local Writer Featured on the TODAY Show

Local author, Raakhee Mirchandani is a celebrity ghostwriter, speechwriter, and mom to a fierce toddler who beat cancer before she could walk. This week she virtually chatted with Hoda and Jenna on the TODAY show about her children’s book ‘Hair Twins’. Mirchandani also shared more information about the tradition that her daughter and her husband follow by not cutting their hair as a part of their religion, Sikhism.

Shaka Bowl Chef to Compete on ‘Chopped’


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Exciting news for fans of the Food Network, local Shaka Bowl chef, Kiersten Gormeley is slated to compete against three other chefs in the upcoming season of Chopped.

“Holy {cow} it’s finally here…but instead of this bowl, what’s in the baskets?!?! You’ll just have to wait and see…tune-in TUESDAY, MAY 18th, 9PM EST you can see me compete against three other chefs for a TACO BRAWL!”

Pilsener Haus + Kolo Klub to Host Rock the House 2021

The uptown beer garden, Pilsener Haus is slated to host Rock the House featuring live music, food, and drinks. Among the musical roundup, guests can expect a Puerto Rican Salsa Band, a Reggae Band, possibly a Grateful Dead and Allman Brothers Tribute Band, as well as others. At this point, it is expected that 200 individuals will be allowed to attend per session. Food and beverages will be served tableside to all seated attendees.

Hoboken Public Education Foundation Honors Dr. Christine Johnson with #AimHigher Award


On Thursday, April 29th the Hoboken Public Education Foundation announced the formation of the Shirael Pollack HPEF #AimHigher Award. For the inaugural honor, the board has selected Hoboken Public School Superintendent Christine Johnson.

“I am honored to be the first recipient of the Shirael Pollack HPEF #AimHigher Award,” said Dr. Christine Johnson. “To say that Shirael inspired me is an understatement. Her words and actions taught me many lessons about leadership, her spirit affected my soul, and her memory will always remain close to my heart.”

Hoboken Historial Museum + Thomas Edison Virtual Film Festival Present Free Event

Duda covid poster

The Hoboken Historial Museum together with the Thomas Edison Virtual Film Festival present Docs Pushing Boundaries. The virtual presentation is available online from April 30th through May 14th and features six innovative non-fiction films that push the boundaries and traditional approaches to filmmaking from the Festival’s 2021 season.

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