• ‘Saku’ to Come to Former Turtle Club Spot in Hoboken {+ More News You Missed}

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    Good morning, Hudson County! Another week has gone by and autumn is finally here — including a temperature drop. But there’s been even more going on in Hoboken and Jersey City than just the gradual change in the weather. This week we learned a Union City-based chicken-and-waffle chain is coming to JC, a new concept restaurant is taking over the former Turtle Club location, and Sorellina’s Wine Bar has released a new wine after its namesake — just to name a few. Keep reading for more of the latest headlines in Hoboken and Jersey City!

    ‘Saku’ Taking Over Old Turtle Club Space in Hoboken

    turtle club office party

    With the Turtle Club closing for good, many residents have been wondering what the space at 930 Park Avenue in Hoboken will take on next. Well, Hoboken Girl has the inside scoop: a new restaurant concept called Saku is in the process of taking over the former Turtle Club. Brought to you by Daniel Grey {owner of Grand Vin and partner at Green Rock + Real Hot Yoga}, “Saku will add an upscale cocktail bar feel to the mix — a Japanese-inspired vibe with a fresh twist.” The restaurant will house a sushi experience with other exciting food + drink menu options as well.

    “It will be a place for people to gather that is different and interesting — with higher-end sushi and cocktails, and a more unique focus on sleek decor elements to transform people into a new age of sushi.”

    While the restaurant plans to open late fall {pending design installations}, stay tuned for more of a sneak peek of the interior – coming VERY soon to Hoboken Girl.

    Waffle & Bubble Opening Up in Jersey City Heights

    waffle and bubble

    {Photo credit: Facebook}

    With two locations in Union City, Waffle & Bubble has gained quite a few fans in North Jersey and now, a third location is opening in Jersey City Heights. The local chain will open at 291 Central Avenue between Hutton and Zabriskie Streets. While the Jersey City location is currently under construction, the other two Union City spaces offer up a taste of what’s to come on the new menu: 12 different kinds of waffle cones {that include every kind of filling imaginable from the chicken waffle cone pictured above to calamari and lobster}, bubble tea, waffle boxes, dumplings, and more.

    Tessa International School Offers Pick-Up Walking Service

    tessa international

    Tessa International School now offers pick-up walking service for its students enjoying after-school programs. Tessa, located at 720 Monroe Street in Hoboken, strives to mold students into “happy world citizens” by focusing on teaching children different languages.

    “Tessa International School now offers a pick-up walking service from Brandt and Connors for After-School languages. Mandarin, Spanish, French, Italian, Hindi, and Portuguese are the options for now,” the press release reads. For more information on the languages available and the pick-up walking service, check out Tessa’s website at tessais.org.

    Hoboken’s Official Government Website Gets an Update and New Events Page

    hoboken government website

    New site, who dis? The city of Hoboken’s official website recently underwent an update. One of the new features is a redone events page that lists — by date — the latest city-hosted events in town. Some current listings include the Fall Arts & Music Festival {September 30} and October’s Harvest Festival {October 20}. The page promises to include cultural events, government meetings, and more. 

    Wonder Bagel Employee Who Was Mugged Last Month in Jersey City Unable to Work Due to Injuries

    A Wonder Bagel employee who was mugged while riding his bicycle is now unable to work due to the injuries he sustained from the attack. The incident, which occurred on August 31, took place near West Side and Culver Avenues in Jersey City near 5AM. Now, the Jersey City resident — who emigrated to America from Egypt two years ago — fears his injuries will ultimately hinder him financially as he is unable to work for at least a month.

    “I don’t know when I’ll feel well enough to work. I have so many expenses,” the man said in his native Arabic. “I came here to live in a better country,” he said. “I’m saddened that I left my country and family to experience this here.”

    On August 31, three assailants accosted the Wonder Bagel employee, kicking his bicycle and knocking him to the ground. The assault left him with a dislocated shoulder, broken collarbone, and a “severe injury to his lungs,” according to NJ.com.

    “I’m afraid to even go outside now,” he added.

    Hoboken Fire Department Raising Awareness, Haven’t Had Contract in 5 Years

    hoboken fire department

    The Hoboken Fire Department is seeking answers… and action. Firefighters representing the department as a whole attended Monday’s City Council meeting to confront government representatives about a new contract.

    “Despite continued record growth in the city of Hoboken, Hoboken Fire Officers International Association of Fire Fighters Local 1076 members have been out of contract since January 1, 2014,” an Instagram post from the New Jersey Firefighters account wrote.

    Officials alleged they have been working under an expired contract since the beginning of 2014. Union president Bernie Grilleti and the union’s state delegate Joseph Grossi told council members the city was seeking cuts in longevity pay, vacation days, and “very minimal salary increases” compared to other union workers. While the city wanted a meditator to step in, Grilleti called the request “a joke.”

    “We ultimately feel that the city doesn’t care about us,” Grossi said. “We’re the backbone of this city.” According to Hoboken spokesperson Santiago Melli-Huber, fire officials’ salaries are cited as “one of the main negotiating hurdles.” Top officials earn a base salary of $128,000 to $155,000 as of last year. The city is looking to adjust salaries to a base of $134,000 to $162,000, however, the union is seeking a higher salary increase than that.

    The 2018 city budget for personnel costs was $75.2 million, $21.6 million of which was specifically doled out for firefighters. In 2018, total city spending will have accrued to $118.7 million.

    “The administration recognizes the hard work of the firefighter superior officers and is committed to negotiating a fair contract that both recognize their loyalty and dedication to the city but is also fiscally prudent,” Melli-Huber said. “The administration is optimistic that an acceptable agreement can be reached by the parties.”

    Jersey City Theater Center Partners With Connection for Art Installation

    connection art installation

    The Jersey City Theater Center is launching its 2018-2019 season with Connection — a series of performance art that examines the relationship between isolation, technology, and communication in an “always-plugged-in” world. The first installment in the Connection series is a multimedia art installation entitled Collaboration. Located at Merseles Studios, Collaboration is a piece shared between abstract Jersey City artist Kati Vilim and Brooklyn-based sculptor Thomas Lendvai. The installation will be featured until the final day of the season on November 30. Visit their website for more information.

    Ani Ramen’s 3rd Annual Slurp. Sip. Repeat. Ramen Eating Competition to Take Place in October

    MisoRamen

    Endless ramen? Count us in. Ani Ramen House’s 3rd Annual Slurp. Sip. Repeat. Ramen Eating Competition in conjunction with their sponsor Sun Noodle is coming up fast. On October 6, the contest will return to the Ani Ramen House in Jersey City for its third year. The competition takes place on fitting holiday: National Noodle Day — and challenges entrants 18+ to eat as many bowls of ramen in 15 minutes as possible {or alternatively, the first entrant to get to 10 bowls}. The first-prize winner will take home a celebratory all-inclusive chef’s tasting dinner for 10 people at Ani Ramen, a $1,000 value. Second place will receive a $300 gift card to Ani Ramen and third place will receive $150 gift card to Ani Ramen. Entry fee is a $20 minimum donation, which will benefit a local charity {not yet announced}. For more information, check out AniRamen.com.

    Homelessness Task Force Unveils Compassionate Plan to Address Issue

    hoboken homeless shelter

    Hoboken is tackling its homelessness issue with compassion. After months of deliberating and delineating plans, the Homelessness Task Force — formed by Mayor Ravi S. Bhalla earlier this year — has rolled out the details of its comprehensive initiative to address the local issue of homelessness. 

    “This crisis knows no borders, and I am proud of the progress we have made in our collaborative work, which goes beyond simply handing someone a dollar or providing them with temporary shelter,” Mayor Bhalla said. “Our efforts are multi-faceted, addressing the root causes of homelessness. Not only are we getting folks off the street, but we are equipping them with the tools necessary to avoid falling back into homelessness.”

    The plan is broken down into three main parts: mitigation, prevention, and compassion. In the vein of mitigation, the Hoboken University Medical Center will offer $50,000 a year to Garden State Episcopal Community Development Corporation to provide supportive housing services to five clients. Hospital funds have also been allocated to the hiring of a full-time case manager. According to the press release, “This marks the first time that major hospital systems in New Jersey have committed funding to provide permanent supportive housing to individuals experiencing long-term homelessness.”

    Supportive service is a broad umbrella that includes mental health and substance abuse treatment, both primary and dental health treatment, income support and benefits, family and social support groups, and more.

    In the way of prevention, the city will lease a 1,000 square foot piece of city property at 1330 Willow Avenue. The non-profit organization The Easterseals will rent the space from the city annually for $1 and use the space to serve the community and also offer supportive employment services for those who need help reentering the workforce.

    And lastly, in the way of compassion, Hoboken will see the opening of its first “all-serving” food pantry in the Hoboken Community Center. The Hudson Pride Center is also sponsoring eight donation meters around the Mile Square City where residents can donate money to the nonprofit organizations working to combat and prevent homelessness.

    Church of the Holy Innocents Approved for Renovations

    holy innocents church hoboken

    Willow Avenue’s historic church has been approved for renovations. The Church of the Holy Innocents — located at the intersection of Six and Willow Streets — was built almost 150 years ago and now is suffering from some structural issues that require restoration. A non-profit group called Friends of the Holy Innocents has taken over the task of caring for the building, in most recent years hosting Rummage & Ruffage, a farmer’s market-yard sale-hybrid, the purpose of which was to raise funds for the restoration project.

    However, Rummage & Ruffage disbanded this summer and soon after, local business owner Karen Nason took over the space, announcing her intent to transform the church into a small concert venue/event space. Hoboken’s Historic Preservation Committee recently approved the first steps in the reparation process, and the Richard McElhiney Architects firm has drawn up the initial plans. First and foremost, the original stones will be removed and reset to ensure a more stabilized structure.

    Sorellina Italian Kitchen & Wine Bar Releases New Vino

    sorellina wine bar

    {Photo credit: Instagram}

    The team behind Sorellina Italian Kitchen & Wine Bar have a reason to celebrate: a new wine. The Italian eatery located on Washington Street just released Sorellina Platinum, a second limited edition white vino after its namesake. Sorellina commemorated the wine release with an event that featured live Italian music, small bites, and a discussion with the winemaker, Daniele Pasquali.

     

    Indian Eatery ‘Curry Up’ Now Expanding to Jersey City

    curry up now indian food

    {Photo credit: Instagram}

    Curry Up Now, an Indian fast food chain based in California, is making its way to New Jersey. While no official new locations have been announced, it’s a big possibility that either Hoboken or Jersey City could be on Curry Up Now’s radar. Founded by a married couple in 2009, Curry Now is a “fast casual eatery” that offers the bold seasonings and flavors associated with Indian food in more accessible dishes. Patrons will find tacos, ramen noodles, fried ravioli, and a hybrid interpretation of Indian-Chinese Chicken Wings. Curry Up Now also offers an array of plant-based and gluten-free options.

    Seven Valleys Persian Restaurant Opening in Early October in Hoboken

    seven valleys hoboken

    Seven Valleys eatery is inching closer to its opening day in Hoboken. The restaurant, which will be located at 936 Washington Street, is brought to you by the same owners as Bwè Kafe — who then teamed up with family friends Ana and Dayan Hadavi to create the new Persian restaurant concept for Hoboken.

    Dale shared exclusively with Hoboken Girl:

    My family and I are members of the Baha’i Faith—a faith that finds its origins in Persia—so we have spent a lot of time surrounded by some pretty awesome Persian friends cooking up some pretty incredible dishes. But Persian restaurants are few and far between and as Hoboken residents ourselves we thought it would be really fun to share this cuisine with our community.

    Like all our endeavors we want our space to feel welcoming to everyone! We have a communal table in the window that can be shared by different groups or seat a larger party of about 7-8. We have high chairs to accommodate families with children but could see the space as a perfect first date location too. The restaurant is comfortable, sweet and cozy, and we hope the vibe to be a relaxed place open for lunch and dinner.

    The opening is {fingers crossed} for early October — so stay tuned to HobokenGirl.com for updates!

     

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

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    Steph Osmanski is a freelance writer who specializes in sustainability and health and wellness content. She is currently pursuing an MFA in Creative Writing at Stony Brook Southampton.