Home Events + NewsEvents Stolen Baby Jesus Returns to Hoboken After 90 Years + More News You Missed

Stolen Baby Jesus Returns to Hoboken After 90 Years + More News You Missed

by Steph
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The last news roundup of 2018!

With New Year’s Eve looming, hopefully you’ve had time to relax, enjoy the holidays, and decompress. In case you’ve been under the covers or unplugged for a good portion of the week, we’re getting you up to speed. The local headlines are here: From Baby Jesus returning to Hoboken to bike auctions and Jersey City’s Liberty Humane Society clearing the shelter for the holidays, there are over 15 stories below. Keep reading for the top news posts in Hoboken and Jersey City that you might have missed:

Baby Jesus Stolen From Church in the 1930s Makes Triumphant Return

baby jesus

{Photo via Pexels}

More than 90 years ago, the baby Jesus statue was stolen from the Christmas nativity scene in front of Our Lady of Grace Church in Hoboken. Now, this year, baby Jesus made his return.

The pièce de résistance was returned earlier this year in a package postmarked from Florida. It was mysteriously shipped back to the church accompanied by an anonymous letter of apology.

“It’s never too late to always own up,” Father Santora told ABC7 News. “Never too late to say I want to do what’s right, and that’s a universal message.”

Every Animal in Liberty Humane Society Was Placed Temporarily in Foster Homes for the Holidays


All the animals from the Liberty Humane Society in Jersey City had temporary homes during the holidays. Every single stray dog and cat waiting for a home found a temporary home in time for Christmas, thanks to the Liberty Humane volunteers who took in the animals as fosters. The cages were completely empty during December 24 and 25 and the Society posted a video showing off all the empty cages just in time for the holiday festivities.

“A huge thanks goes out to all of our holiday fosters who have graciously opened up their warm homes, beds, couches and cookie jars to our dog kennel residents during the holiday season,” Society representatives wrote. “An empty kennel is a glorious sight as it means these pups are all getting a break from the shelter and get to have a cozy, warm winter recess! Happy holidays and may your days be as warm as inviting as these kind hearts have allowed it for our dogs!

Biggie’s Newark Location Closing After 72 Years

biggies closing

Biggie’s Newark location in Hoboken is closing, owners Steven and Michael Ranuro confirm to HobokenGirl. After 72 years of serving Mile Square, the clam bar is closing its last Hoboken location to focus on catering and its other two locations in Carlstadt and Ramsey.

“It’s been a great 72 years and we really thank Hoboken and the surrounding area for giving our family the privilege to serve them over that time,” Steven Ranuro says.

The Pilsener Haus Igloos Have Returned!

pilsener haus igloos hoboken

…Now all we need is some snow. Pilsener Haus’ igloos are back, and we. can’t. wait. While they’re in full swing, unfortunately, due to rain on the 28th they were unavailable for rental or enjoyment that day after rolling out the week prior. Here’s to hoping that snow and “better” cold weather come soon {yes, this is the only time begging for snow, just sayin’}. The igloos are available for walk-in, or rental {minimum $500 tab for a minimum of 3 hours to book}. To reserve, call  (201) 683-5465.

PATH Line Resumes After Temporary Suspension


The PATH train from Journal Square-33rd and Hoboken-33rd Street are now back on track, running their standard schedule. Earlier this week, both lines were temporarily suspended while MTA conducted signal repair work between Christopher Street and Hoboken.

City of Hoboken Auctioning Off Abandoned Bicycles

bike locked

Don’t worry — none of the bikes up for auction match descriptions of stolen bikes. The City of Hoboken is hosting an online  auction of abandoned bicycles from now until December 31, 2018. If you’d like to participate in the auction, you can check out all of the bikes here.

Three-Alarm Fire Breaks Out on Christmas Eve

A three-alarm fire went off at 1 Marine View Plaza on December 24, Christmas Eve. In a matter of hours, the fire was contained and the building was evacuated, with displaced residents seeking shelter at W Hotels in Hoboken. The Hoboken Fire Department reported that Mayor Ravi Bhalla was on the scene and thanked everyone involved for the speedy and successful response.

“Thank you to BC Rozmester and Group C personnel for their hard work this Christmas Eve,” the Hoboken FD Twitter account announced.

Residents told NJ.com that the fire began around 9pm on Monday and was contained to one unit on the 12th floor.

“The fire department came quickly, as they usually do,” said resident Eileen Carvalhl, who lives on the 22nd floor. Carvalhl also said some units suffered water damage.

Hoboken Police Continue Pedestrian Decoy Initiative

pedestrian initiative

{Photo via Twitter}

Hoboken PD is continuing their efforts to make the city safer for pedestrians. The photo above features PO Chris Hatfield at 400 Newark Street, working as a “pedestrian decoy.” The plainclothes operation sees Hoboken police officers dressed as civilians as they cross the street in marked crosswalks. If a driver does not stop for a plain-clothed officer, that driver could receive a violation. The initiative is a direct response to pedestrian safety complaints and has already seen a pay-off. The initial operation saw 10 violations issued at 15th Street and 15 at Newark Street. Both streets were categorized as locations with “high levels of resident complaints.”

“We must always prioritize the safety of our families and children as they utilize our City streets,” Mayor Bhalla said. “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.”

The initiative comes with a reminder for residents: Remember to email Traffic@hobokenpd.org for any HPD traffic complaints.

Two Homeless Men Charged With Possession of a Weapon

hoboken police patch

Two homeless men in Hoboken were charged with possession of a weapon on Thursday, December 20.

Fabian Valle, 19, of Kearny, was charged with possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose, terroristic threats, hindering apprehensions, aggravated assault, possession of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia, and bail jumping.

Joseph Catagnus, 27, a Hoboken homeless man, was also arrested and charged with unlawful possession of a weapon, hindering apprehension, and three counts of bail jumping.

A Hoboken homeless man, Joseph Catagnus, age 27, was arrested and charged with unlawful possession of a weapon, hindering apprehension, and three counts of bail jumping.

Officers were dispatched to Newark and Hudson Streets on a report of a man with a handgun. The incident started between the two men, who were both inside of a bus that shuttles homeless people to warming centers.

Both men were placed under arrested an an airsoft-style BB gun was recovered.

Jersey City Makes Top 100 Places to Celebrate New Year’s Eve

new years eve

{Photo by Pexels}

New York City might have been named the top place to celebrate New Year’s Eve, but two cities in New Jersey also made the cut, making the top 100 places. Jersey City came in at #88 and Newark came in at #95. The study was published in 2018’s Best Places for New Year’s Eve Celebrations.

Transformer Blows Up in New York City, Lights the Sky Blue

transformer blowup

{Photo courtesy of Raf Sison}

An electrical flash in Astoria, Queens earlier this week lit up the night sky in an electric blue hue, causing some New York City and Jersey residents to ponder the reality of an alien invasion. Con Edison spokespersons confirmed a transformer blow-up caused the “arc flash.” By the time NYPD and firefighters arrived on the scene, there was no fire. Some residents reported temporary power outages, while others claimed the explosion caused tremors that shook buildings and rattled windows.

The incident also caused LaGuardia Airport to temporarily close. Between 9:22 and 10:23 PM, no flights took to the skies.

“No injuries, no fire, no evidence of extraterrestrial activity,” police confirmed on Twitter.

Teenage Boy Fatally Shot in Jersey City

A teenage boy died on December 26 after being shot in Jersey City. The Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office Homicide Unit is currently investigating the fatal shooting, which occurred near Bidwell Avenue and Martin Luther King Drive. The boy was 16 years old.

No additional information has been released, but we will continue to update the story as details come in.

City Provides Instructions on Discarding Christmas Trees

hoboken christmas tree

{Photo via Twitter}

With Christmas over and done, the city of Hoboken is providing specific instructions for disposal of trees. “Looking to discard your Christmas tree? Please place your tree at the curb on Tues or Thurs evenings after 7:30pm (after 9pm in the limited business area: Wash St, Newark St, 1st St, 14th St, Hudson Pl). All decorations/plastic must be removed, trees should not be placed in bags,” the official city account tweeted.

VT x BTS Pop-Up Store Coming to Washington Street

bts popup store

{Photo via Twitter}

Fans of the K-pop boy band BTS, rejoice! A BTS pop-up store {in collaboration with VT Cosmetics} is coming to 327 Washington Street, the newly-opening M Beauty + Salon location {where Makeovers was located}. The pop-up will have the collab eye palettes {with six shades}, foundation, CC Cream, and matte lipsticks available, as well as signed photo card kits, and an interactive “BTS Photo Zone” area. Fans can enjoy the store on January 5, 2019!

Study Says New Jersey Is the State Least Interested in Buying Guns

hoboken police department

According to a new federal study, New Jersey is the state least interested in purchasing guns. New Jersey residents went through fewer firearms-permit background checks per capita throughout the year than any other state. From January to December 2018, the FBI ran about 93,000 background checks for New Jerseyans. While it’s significantly less than any other state, it’s also twice the amount of background checks run in New Jersey 10 years ago.

Background checks are thought to be the most accurate gauge of gun-buying interest. Records that show purchases are not public record.

Alex Morales Gallery Closes

gallery closed

It appears the Alex Morales Gallery at 365 First Street in Hoboken has closed. The windows are covered in brown paper and there is a note on the door. No word yet on whether or not it’s a temporary or permanent closing.

No Pants Subway Ride 2019 Kicks Off on January 13

The annual No Pants Subway Ride is kicking off on January 13, 2019. Put on by the Improv Everywhere initiative, the No Pants Subway Ride encourages people to hop on the Subway in their undies, pantless.

“The idea behind No Pants is simple: Random passengers board a subway car at separate stops in the middle of winter without pants,” the official website states. “The participants behave as if they do not know each other, and they all wear winter coats, hats, scarves, and gloves. The only unusual thing is their lack of pants.”

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