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23 Hoboken + Jersey City News Stories You Missed This Week

by Steph
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Is it Sunday already? Time flies, especially when there’s so much local news to constantly catch up on. This week, Hudson County Art Supply relocated to Jersey Heights, Hoboken received its annual score from the Human Rights Campaign, and Seven Valleys Persian food restaurant is officially opening its doors on Monday to patrons. That’s not all you missed! Keep reading to see Hudson County’s biggest headlines of the week:

Former Hoboken Girl of the Week Helen Maroulis Competing in 2018 World Wrestling Championships

helen maroulis

{Photo credit: Instagram}

Helen Maroulis, Olympic wrestler and former Hoboken Girl of the Week {!}, has announced that she will be competing in the 2018 World Championships.

“Smiling because I get an opportunity to wrestle on the World stage again,” she wrote on Instagram. “2018 World Championships in two weeks. Blessed and grateful for the ability to delay the trials and get healthy first. Better late than never. See you soon, Budapest.”

Maroulis is a 27-year-old Greek-American Hudson County resident. She took home the gold medal at the 2015 World Wrestling Championships in Las Vegas and at the 2011 Pan American Games in Mexico. In 2016, Maroulis nabbed the first place title {and the gold} for wrestling in the 2016 Summer Olympics.

Hudson County Art Supply Relocates to Jersey City Heights

hudson county art supply

{Photo credit: Instagram}

John McInerney is the owner of Hudson County Art Supply, a local Jersey City artist’s space that has been situated between Cole and 1st Streets since 2003 {as well as in Hoboken on Willow Ave for a brief period of time}. After 15 years of doing business downtown, McIreney, who rents the commercial retail space, is tied up in a dispute that details “the failed negotiation of a sale” between McIreney’s landlord and real estate developer Peter Mocco. Because of the dispute, McInerney and the Hudson County Art Supply have been forced to take their shop elsewhere: Jersey City Heights.

“It’s not Chilltown anymore,” McInerney told Jersey Digs. “I walked around here when I first moved here and it felt like a small town. I loved the diversity. Now there’s still diversity but it’s not like it was. It’s not just different people. It’s a different economical standing.”

“If you increase the taxes on all the residents and give tax abatements to the developers, all you have left is developers,” McInerney added.

It sounds truly like a bittersweet move but no doubt local Jersey City artists are happy not to lose Hudson County Art Supply entirely. Sometime in October, HCAS will open its new location at 469 Central Ave in JC Heights.

Hoboken Woman Found Dead in Hudson River Last Sunday

hudson river

Terrible news for the local Hoboken community. A 32-year-old woman was found dead in the Hudson River last Sunday according to city police Chief Ken Ferrante.

The 32-year-old was a Hoboken resident. The body was extracted from the river by emergency personnel at around 7:30 am on Sunday, October 7 after a man walking his dog down Sinatra Drive saw the body floating. The man immediately notified police.

Officers did attempt to revive the woman but such attempts proved unsuccessful and she was pronounced dead on site. Not much else is known about the death but it has been reported that no foul play is suspected at this time. The final cause of death is to be determined by the Regional Medical Examiner’s Office. Currently, police believe the resident entered the water voluntarily.

Identification of the woman has not yet been confirmed. Officials are waiting for next of kin to be notified.

Human Rights Campaign Scores Hoboken a Perfect ‘100’

diversity uniting hands

How does Hoboken rank when it comes to human rights? The City of Hoboken recently received a perfect score of 10 from the Human Rights Campaign Municipality Equality Index. The HRC MEI is an annual look at more than 500 municipalities and it strives to rate cities based on how inclusive their laws, policies, and services are to LGBTQ residents and employees.

Last year in 2017, Hoboken was awarded a 92; 2018 marks the first year Hoboken has ever received a perfect score.

“I’m proud to see Hoboken recognized as a welcoming and inclusive City for the LGBTQ+ community,” said Mayor Bhalla. “When I began my term on January 1, I made it a priority to build on former Mayor Zimmer’s work towards equal protection under the law for all. While the work we’ve done this year is important, a score of 100 is not the end goal. I will continue to advance policies designed to correct centuries of institutional disenfranchisement.”

The 2018 mark took into consideration new policies introduced this year by Bhalla, including the gender neutral bathroom ordinance and non-discrimination executive order for contractors.

“Thank you to Mayor Bhalla for his leadership on LGBTQ+ issues and for being a great partner of Hudson Pride Center,” said Hudson Pride Center CEO Michael Billy. “His strong, decisive actions to protect and empower our community have set a high bar for other New Jersey municipalities.”

Last August, the Hudson Pride Center presented Mayor Bhalla with the Evolution Award for “being on the forefront of adopting policies that keep up with society’s evolving understanding of gender and sexuality.” See the full results of the MEI here.

New Play ‘Unbossed & Unbowed’ Focuses on the Life of Shirley Chrisholm

unbossed and unbowed

{Photo of Shirley Chrisholm courtesy of Jersey City Theatre Center}

Unbossed & Unbowed is the new play from the Jersey City Theatre Center. It follows the life and times of Shirley Chrisholm, the first black woman elected to Congress and the first black candidate for a major party’s nomination for President and the first woman to run for the Democratic party’s Presidential nomination. In 2015, President Obama awarded Chrisholm with the Presidential Medal of Freedom and now, Unbossed & Unbowed from playwright, journalist, and actress Ingrid Griffith brings Chrisholm’s story to life in this one-woman show. Starring Ingrid as Shirley herself, the Jersey City Theatre Center presents Unbossed & Unbowed on Thursday, October 25 at 8pm. Tickets are a suggested $5 donation and the theatre is located at Merseles Studios at 339 Newark Avenue in Jersey City. {More information here.}

Hudson County Prosecutor Hosting Gun Buy Back Event

Hudson Country Prosecutor Esther Suarez is sponsoring a Gun Buy Back event on October 20. From 9 am to 5pm, Hudson County residents can surrender found or unwanted weapons and ammunition to two safe locations. You can surrender weapons or ammunition at either cite: St. Anthony of Padua Roman Catholic Church at 615 8th Street in Union City and Heavenly Temple Church of God at 15 Martin Luther King Drive in Jersey City. For more information, visit hcpo.org or contact Rudy Snelling at 201-324-6215.

Queens Man Dubbed New Ramen Eating Champion, Two-Year Victor Dethroned

ramen eating contest winners

{Photo credit: Ani Ramen}

The third annual Slurp. Sip. Repeat. Ramen Eating Contest by Ani Ramen House and Sun Noodle produced a new winner this year. Wayne Algenio of Queens, NY {pictured above in the center} consumed a whopping eight bowls of ramen in just 10 minutes, therefore dethroning former two-time champion Sebastian Voltarelli {pictured top left}. Voltarelli, who was suited up for a wedding he had to attend immediately after the food-eating competition, ate a total of seven bowls of ramen. And in third place was ramen-eating contest newcomer Charles Creamer from Hoboken, who finished six full bowls of ramen.

All proceeds from the event benefited No Kid Hungry, a non-profit organization campaign that strives to end children’s hunger worldwide.

Mayor Bhalla Announces $4.5 Million in Community Givebacks from Hotel Developer

mayor bhalla hotel agreement

{Photo credit: Instagram}

Hoboken Mayor Ravi S. Bhalla has announced that the City of Hoboken and KMS Development Partners have come to an agreement regarding plans to develop a new hotel in the Mile Square City. The agreement states that KMS will make $4.5 million worth of investments in the Hoboken community.

“These community givebacks are real progress for our City,” said Mayor Bhalla. “It is my intention that this agreement shall serve as a model for all future deals. I am putting developers on notice: if you want the opportunity to do business in our City, we expect union labor and we expect generous community givebacks.”

Community givebacks include $1 million in road and infrastructure upgrades, a $1 million endowment for the Hoboken Public Education Foundation to support the public school system, $100,000 to each of Hoboken’s three charter Schools, $200,000 for the Affordable Housing Trust Fund, and $2 million to go towards revitalizing the Hoboken Community Center. The vision for the Center includes re-opening the public pool and providing space to expand the district’s pre-K program, which currently has a wait list, and open the uptown branch of the Hoboken Public Library.

Though the agreement has been technically reached, it still requires approval from board members at the City Council Meeting next Wednesday, October 17.

Seven Valleys Persian Restaurant Officially Opening Monday

seven valleys restaurant 1

Seven Valleys is a Persian food enthusiast’s dream come true and after months of gearing up, the uptown spot is finally opening on Monday. Located at 936 Washington Street, Seven Valleys officially announced its hours as 5-10PM this first week, then openings for lunch on the weekends from 11AM-3PM. Lunch is from 11 to 3 and dinner from 5 to 10pm. On Friday, the restaurant hosted a tasting party for local influencers and on Saturday, the gates to the new locale were officially unlocked.

Originally, Seven Valleys hoped to be open a week earlier but the restaurant decided to push back the date in order get things in tip-top shape for guests.

“Friends, we will be pushing our opening date to this Monday, October 15 to give us a little more time to perfect a few things (sic),” an IG caption reads. “We are so eager to open our doors and dine with you and Monday couldn’t come sooner! Thank you for holding out with us a little bit longer.”

The Friends of Hoboken Library Present Special Front Door Donation

library front doors donation

{Photo courtesy of the Friends of Hoboken Library}

The Friends of Hoboken Library recently presented the edifice with a special donation: the manufacturing and installation of the historical replicas of the Hoboken Library’s original front doors. The organization celebrated with a ceremony and unveiling of the doors on Tuesday, October 9 at the Library’s main branch at 500 Park Avenue.

DeCarlos Bespoke Speaks Out After Car Crashes into Storefront, Celebrating Grand Re-Opening on October 25

decarlos besoke

DeCarlos Bespoke is speaking out {and planning its grand re-opening} after an accident left the Jersey City’s storefront windows shattered and the store inside destroyed. Back in June, a woman attempting to parallel-park her car outside the building mistook the gas pedal for the brake and drove her vehicle through the storefront.

In a long and detailed Instagram post, DeCarlos Bespoke representatives got candid about the incident. “Before getting back to business, we just had to say thank you one more time. As a small shop, this is the most daunting thing we’ve ever had to face. The same week a car crashed through our storefront, a fire from neighboring buildings left us with another problem—smoke damage to our fabrics. Double whammy is putting it lightly.”

The post continued, “Getting our doors back open over the last 3.5 months has been more downs than ups. There is no protocol or checklist for this kind of thing. Between insurance, permits and other delays, there were roadblocks at every turn. The only way out was through—through the ringer! On top of all this, we simply could not do nearly enough of what we love doing so much. We were anxious (very, very literally) to get back up and running.”

“But through it all, there was something we could always rely on—your overwhelming kindness,” the post continued. “We want to thank all of you that: Offered us your homes, work spaces, and time, wished us well and comforted us with your words of encouragement, lent us a helping hand, and supported us at all our Pop-Up events.”

Now after nearly four months, DeCarlos Bespoke is ready to re-open. “All of the above and your patience have meant EVERYTHING to us. There was never a doubt that we’d come back stronger from this, but we couldn’t have done it without you. So, without further ado, we are BACK. And we are CELEBRATING! (We could certainly use a drink!) Please join us for a toast on Thursday, October 25. RSVP by clicking on the link in our bio. See you then!”

You can RSVP to the grand re-opening event here.

Tony Boloney’s Jersey City Location to Open Soon

tony boloneys jersey city

{Photo via Reddit}

From Hoboken to Jersey City. Hoboken pizza staple Tony Boloney’s — known for their outrageous specialty pies {like Ramen noodle or taco pizza} and infant-sized slices — is making itself a home in Jersey City. The new location will open at 363 Grove Street, right across from Dullboy bar. Hours are currently listed as 11am-11pm Sunday through Wednesday, 11am to 2pm on Thursday, and 11am to 4am on Friday and Saturday. {See our interview with Tony Boloney’s owner Mike Hauke for more exclusive deets on what’s to come for the JC location.}

Bang Cookies Now Offers Boozy Cookies

S'mores cookie bang cookies hoboken jersey city

These might be the only cookies you have to be 21+ and older to ingest. Bang Cookies now offers “boozy cookies,” delectable treats filled with organic spirits. Ready to get milk drunk? Flavors include Bourbon Walnut Toffee, Pumpkin Spice Bourbon Crack Cookie, Cinnamon Whiskey Crack Cookie, and Bourbon Kitchen Sink. BRB, we’ll be at the bar — uh, we mean, cookie place.

19-Unit Development Planned for Paulus Hook Neighborhood

morris street paulus hook jersey city

{Image via Google Maps}

The Hoboken Brownstone Company has a 19-unit development plan in the works for the Paulus Hook neighborhood in Ward E of Jersey City. The four-story mixed-use project, which would be located at 83-89 Morris Street, would consist of five properties and bring in 19 separate units in all. Two of said units would be considered a “bed and breakfast” while the other 17 would be considered residential. Also included in the 19-unit complex would be a penthouse.

DISTORT’S Latest Mural Debuts on Adams Street

hoboken mural distort

{Photo credit: Greg Pallante}

A new mural has made its home at 1320 Adams Street in Hoboken. The new public artwork is the brainchild of DISTORT, a local artist who blends classical training with the “intense creative energy” of graffiti. It features Dorothy McNeil, a fixture at the African-American club and music venue Club Zanzibar in the 60s and 70s, who leans against a vintage train engine. Dorothea Lange photographs McNeil from her vantage point atop a classic Hoboken brownstone stoop. Maria Pepe is also present, right at home up at bat as Pepe is known for being the first-ever girl to play Little League Baseball. And across the way, two dock workers take a break behind the Maxwell House Factory.

The new mural — not unlike a classic renaissance painting — aims to blend all points of time in Hoboken life: past, present, and future. What do you think of the mural? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

Mayor Bhalla Meets With Local Business Owners

mayor bhalla business owners lunch

{Photo credit: Twitter}

Mayor Bhalla is hoping to keep the lines of communication open between the City of Hoboken and its local business owners. Bhalla met with several small biz owners earlier this week to discuss the relationship between city and its businesses and to brainstorm on how to keep the environment headed in a positive direction.

“Enjoyed a lunch w/ #Hoboken business owners today to discuss how we can work towards a more vibrant & successful biz environment,” Bhalla tweeted. “Thank u to all the biz owners who joined, I hope to make this a regular meeting to keep an open line of communication between City & Biz Comm.”

Mattress Firm Files Chapter 11 Bankruptcy, Closes 6 NJ Locations

mattress bed

{Photo credit: Pexels}

Is Hoboken next? The nation’s largest mattress retailer Mattress Firm has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. As a result, six New Jersey locations will be some of the first of 700 stores to shut their doors. In order “to strengthen its balance sheet and optimize its store footprint area,” Mattress Firm will first focus on areas where there are multiple locations in close proximity to each other.

Mattress Firm acquired 1,000 Sleepy’s locations back in 2015. It currently owns over 100 locations in New Jersey alone.

The first six NJ stores to close will be the following locations: East Windsor, Hammonton, Lawrence, Newark, Parsippany, and Saddle Brook.

Hobokenites are wondering if the 202 Washington Street location is next on the list. Mattress Firm is projected to lose nearly $150 million.

Eric Legrand Meets With Hoboken Middle Schoolers

eric legrand hoboken middle school

{Photo credit: Twitter}

American football legend Eric Legrand stopped by Hoboken Middle School to chat and meet with students earlier this week. Legrand, 28, became paralyzed while making a tackle in a game back in 2010 and has since regained some movement and sensation throughout his body. Since becoming paralyzed, Legrand has made it his mission to walk again

He became paralyzed while making a tackle in an October 2010 game, but has since regained movement in his shoulders and sensation throughout his body. Since becoming wheelchair bound, Legrand launched a career as an inspirational speaker.

“Wrapped up this week by speaking to the students and faculty at Hoboken Middle School,” Legrand tweeted. “I had a blast with you guys today. Thank you for everything #bELieve52.”

Hoboken Man Charged With Falsely Reporting Stolen Bike

bike locked

{Photo credit: Pexels}

A Hoboken man has been charged with lying to police about being assaulted while riding a bike. Angel Mendoza, 47, previously told police he had been attacked while riding and his employer’s bike — which was valued anywhere from $1,000 to $1,500 —was subsequently stolen. He was charged with making false reports to law enforcement and theft.

On September 26, Mendoza filed a robbery report claiming that while near the 9th Street Light Rail station, two men grabbed him by the neck, pushed him off of his work bike, and stole it. Mendoza reported the accusation to officers William Bullock and David DiMartino, who then began an investigation.

Officers immediately felt Mendoza’s account of the report was inconsistent and contradictory; then an anonymous witness admitted to seeing someone take the bike into a building on Fifth Street.

After reviewing video footage to backtrack Mendoza’s footsteps and cross-referencing with sources, officials came to the conclusion that no robbery occurred and that Mendoza was still in possession of the work bicycle.

Quinn drew up a complaint for a false report against Mendoza on October 4. The complaint is currently awaiting a court date. If found guilty, Mendoza faces up to six-and-a-half years of imprisonment and up to $25,000 in fines and/or restitution.

“When individuals make false reports of violent crimes, like robbery, that did not occur and it is done purposely to mask their own illegal or inappropriate conduct, they need to be charged,” Police Chief Kenneth Ferrante said in a statement. “False reports of violent crimes create public panic, social media reactions that could be damaging to the city, and waste hours of law enforcement investigative resources trying to track incidents that never occurred.”

Hoboken Police Motorcycle Unit Ride in Columbus Day Parade

hoboken police columbus day parade

{Photo credit: Twitter}

Members of the Hoboken Police Motorcycle Unit participated in New York City’s 74th annual Columbus Day Parade earlier this week. Some motorcycle riders paused in the streets to snap a selfie to commemorate the moment.

“Members of the Hoboken Police Motorcycle Unit getting ready to participate in the NYC 74th Annual Columbus Day Parade (sic),” the official Twitter for the Hoboken Police Superior Officers Association wrote.

Police Chief Keith Ferrante tweeted, “Thank you to @HobokenPD Sergeants @Krock137 Rotondi, and Frank Rosa, & Officers Dylan Archilla, Chris Hatfield, Steven Albert, & Armondo Caraballo, representing @CityofHoboken & New Jersey’s Italian American Society at today’s Columbus Parade in NYC!”

One motorcyclist, Sergeant Keith Rotondi, even engaged in a friendly race against a mini NYPD officer in training. Watch the adorable Twitter video here and tell us in the comments: Who do you think won?

Prudential Center Adds Wine Bar, Asian Cuisine, Lobster Rolls, and More to Menu

prudential center menu

{Photo credit: Andrew Dzurita, Legends Hospitality}

The Prudential Center in Newark — home of the New Jersey Devils ice hockey team — has announced three new dining destinations and an updated menu of food and beverages. The three new destinations include NJ Steak Co., which offers fresh beef and new menu additions like the Steakhouse Wedge, Mustard Steak, and an Asian BBQ Steak, Bowled Over, a ramen noodle and rice bowl place for those craving Asian-infused flavor, and Line Change. The latter restaurant reflects Devils’ players favorites: Lobster Rolls, Clam Chowder, Clam Cakes, and New England Rutabaga and Apple Salad.

Last but not least, the Prudential Center is welcoming a fully-stocked wine bar. Located on the Main Concourse in Section 4, the Wine Bar features Jordan, Oberon by Mondavi, Cakebread, Mer Soleil, and Opus One; not to mention, it will also welcome an “On-Tap” program, offering margaritas, vodka, and various wines on-tap.

Not sure which food stands sell which beers? Spectators can also use Brew Finder to locate their favorite brewskies while at The Rock. For more information on Prudential Center’s concession stands, check out the full menu and guide here.

Gourmet Market Oliva Opening Next Week at Newark Avenue in Jersey City

jc staycation newark ave jersey city hoboken girl

Oliva is coming to Newark Avenue as of next week. The gourmet market concept — which appears to have a sister location in Tribeca, Manhattan — will offer everything from prepared foods, a seating area, and late-night hours. Previously Tender Shoot, the space at 138 Newark Avenue in Jersey City now provides access to the second floor, where customers can sit, chill, and eat after ordering their food. Back during the space’s Tender Shoot days, there was no consumer access to Level 2.

A prepared food counter runs the entire length of the space and there’s a grocery area in the back. According to Jersey Digs, it looks like Oliva plans to stay open late on Fridays and Saturdays. The new market plans to open on Wednesday, October 17 if all goes according to plan.

City of Hoboken Running Collection on Behalf of Puerto Rico

mayor bhalla puerto rico

{Photo credit: Twitter}

Back in August, Mayor Bhalla met with Mayor Javier Hernandez of Villalba, Puerto Rico to discuss city reparations after a hurricane. Now, we’re seeing the fruits of that labor as Bhalla teams up with Raul Morales Sr., of the Hoboken Puerto Rican Cultural Committee and the Hoboken High School Hispanic Culture Club. The City of Hoboken is running a donation drive and asking residents to donate gloves, bats, helmets, cleats, and jerseys for the boys and girls of Villabla, Puerto Rico.

“Hoboken is collecting gloves, bats, helmets, cleats, and jerseys for the boys and girls of Villalba, Puerto Rico,” the official City of Hoboken Twitter account posted. “Drop them off at the Little League Field (25 5th St) Thursday, Oct 18 and Sunday, Oct 21 from 5-9 pm.”

“Maria is a real, real hard situation for Puerto Rico,” Hernandez said back in August. “This is a great opportunity, not just for Villalba, not just for Puerto Rico, but even beyond to advance the concept of sustainability and resiliency in the area of energy,” he added.

Donations may be dropped off at the Hoboken Little League Fesken Field at 25 5th Street in Hoboken on Thursday, 10/18 and Sunday, 10/21. For more information, contact Joseph Branco at josephbranco@yahoo.com or 201-832-2266.

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

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