October General Meeting
October continues the deluge of fall events, both social and civic, throughout our City. Of course, Halloween happenings abound. These include the highly popular Afternoon of Fright on 4th Street right here in our neighborhood, and several others in the Events section below. There are also several forums where residents can learn about the various candidates in the upcoming Board of Education elections next month—including a portion of the HCA General Meeting, whose guest speakers include school board candidates and City Council members.
As always, that will be covered below, but first…
HCA encourages our neighbors to shop locally, and we hope everyone supports the businesses that not only contribute to HCA as sponsors, but also make living in Harsimus Cove even better. Please click on the logos below to visit their websites.
OCTOBER GENERAL MEETING
Monday, October 10, 2016 at 7:30 PM
at Grace Church Van Vorst (corner of 2nd & Erie Streets; enter at the red door on 2nd Street)
Updates & Discussion: Due to the heavy schedule of guest speakers, updates and discussion this month will be brief. We will touch on the North Baptist Church sidewalk closure on Jersey Avenue at 4th Street, the upcoming Afternoon of Fright Halloween block party as well as HCA Board Elections in November.
1st Speakers: City Council President Rolando Lavarro & Councilwomen Candice Osborne & Joyce Watterman. Coucilwoman Osborne represents Ward E, which includes most of Downtown Jersey City (and all of Harsimus Cove). Council President Lavarro and Councilwoman Watterman represent the entire City in At-Large positions. They will briefly introduce themselves and their goals, and then answer questions from HCA and residents about topics of interest to our neighborhood (e.g., street & pedestrian safety, parking, development policy, historic preservation, etc.).
2nd Speakers: As we have in past election cycles, HCA has invited all candidates in the race for the JCBOE to speak at our October meeting. The purpose is to give residents an opportunity to familiarize themselves with candidates and their positions. If time permits, we may open up for questions from attendees and/or have a meet-and-greet session afterward.
It should be noted that HCA has a policy of political neutrality. HCA does not endorse any political candidate or slate of candidates.
Afternoon of Fright on Fourth Street
On Saturday, October 22, HCA will be assisting one of our neighborhood’s block associations in hosting the 6th Annual Afternoon of Fright on Fourth Street from 2 to 6 PM on 4th Street between Jersey and Coles Streets. This is a free, family-friendly Halloween block party that draws visitors from throughout Jersey City to right here in Harsimus Cove. As usual, this year’s event will include games and attractions such as the leaf jump, play castle, beanbag toss, face painting, street chalk drawing, demonstrations by JC Taekwondo & JC Lacrosse and live entertainment by Preschool of Rock.
Sponsors of the event and contributing organizations so far include Fussy Friends, Key Food, Modern Family Dentistry, Rustique Pizza and Three Little Birds.
HCA is seeking volunteers to help with various activities. Please contact Rob Greenwald or Mike Francisco if you are able to help out or know someone who is interested in any of the above. And please like and share Afternoon of Fright on Facebook.
Sidewalk Closure on Jersey Avenue
As many are aware, the sidewalk on the east side of Jersey Avenue near 4th Street has been closed for several weeks. HCA has learned that this was done to mitigate potential overhead safety hazards related to the structure of North Baptist Church. We are engaged in conversations with residents in the neighborhood, as well as appropriate City departments and the Church and diocese, in search of potential long-term and short-term solutions.
HCA’s main goals in these talks are to ensure that residents are safe, and that the North Baptist Church as historic structure is preserved. We’d also like to see arrangements made for safe pedestrian passage the east side of Jersey Avenue as soon as possible. We welcome neighborhood residents who would like to be part of the dialogue toward a productive solution. Those interested may reach out at HarsimusCoveAssociation@gmail.com.
Bad Accident Highlights Pedestrian & Traffic Safety NeedsA according to a photo and description of HCA Facebook group, a serious motor vehicle accident occurred at the intersection of 1st Street and Jersey Avenue on September 15 a little before 8:30 AM, resulting in a flipped SUV. There were several accounts of difficulty reaching 911. While our search yielded no news reports of fatalities, HCA has identified this intersection as one of the most dangerous in our neighborhood based on feedback from residents.
HCA has renewed its request to the City for continued attention to traffic calming measures and is targeting this intersection (and a few others) for particular attention. Member and resident ideas and suggestions are welcome.
DPW Director RetiresHCA learned last month of Department of Public Works (DPW) Director Mark Redfield’s retirement effective October 1, after 36 years of service. In his most recent two years as Director, Mark was one of those who worked with HCA in our efforts toward introducing and improving pedestrian safety measures (e.g., daylighting and pedestrian yield signage), as well as certain aspects of Pedestrian Mall maintenance and other issues related to quality of life.
We thank Mark for his service and wish him well in his retirement and his future endeavors. HCA will keep our members and readers posted as we learn who the successor will be.
Help Us Spread The Word About HCAWord of mouth is one of the best ways to spread news about a local organization. So, HCA is calling on members to help us spread the word. Social media is an important first step. We ask those who have not already to “like” our page on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
We invite you to join the discussion happening in our Facebook group, as it's a great way to keep up on neighborhood happenings and discussion among members and neighbors between meetings.
Hamilton Park Neighborhood Association Forum, Thursday, October 6 from 7 to 9 PM. at P.S. 37 (158 Erie Street). Forum at which candidates will discuss the issues. Pre-registration requested and “kid wrangling” available. The link to register is here.
BOARD OF EDUCATION
DOWNTOWN CANDIDATE FORUMS
As part of the Harsimus Cove Association General Meeting, Monday, October 10, after guest speakers Council President Lavarro and Councilwomen Osborne & Watterman, the Jersey City Board of Education candidates will give a brief introduction to themselves and their positions, and potentially field questions. This is not a dedicated forum, but rather a General Meeting starting at 7:30 PM. BOE candidates will be in the second half of the agenda.
Historic Paulus Hook Association Forum, Thursday, October 27 from 7 to 9 PM at P.S.16 (96 Sussex Street). This forum will be moderated by Leila Sadeghi, PhD, Executive Director of the Guarini Institute for Government and Leadership at Saint Peter's University. Audience may submit questions at the event. Details on the Facebook event page.
Also, just a reminder: the deadline to register to vote in the upcoming election is October 18, 2016.
RECURRING VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITYGrace Community Services’ Breakfast Plus Program is looking for volunteers to help prepare and/or cook and breakfast and serve breakfast to fellow community members in need. The 100% volunteer-run program, based at Grace Church Van Vorst (39 Erie Street), serves breakfast to between 60-100+ men and women from 7:30 to 9 AM every Saturday & Sunday, year-round (including holidays). Doors open around 6:30 AM and volunteers arrive at 7:00 AM. For more information, please email Jenny at email@example.com.
EventsTaste of Hudson. On Thursday, October 6 from 6 to 9 PM, the Boys & Girls Clubs of Hudson County invites you to enjoy an evening of drinks & delicious bites from Hudson County's best restaurants, served in the stunning Harborside Atrium (34 Exchange Place, Jersey City). Tickets are $50 and all proceeds will benefit the Boys & Girls Club of Hudson County. The event is co-sponsored by Mack-Cali and Jersey City Ties. More information, including a list of participating restaurants is available on the Facebook event page and Boys & Girls Club of Hudson County site. Tickets are available here.
Jersey City Art & Studio Tour. The 26th annual celebration of the arts in Jersey City kicks off with its Official Kickoff Party on Friday, October 7 and continues through the weekend of October 8 & 9. The event showcases hundred of artists (visual, performance, music, etc.) spaced throughout Jersey City. Details (including map) available at the Jersey City Art & Studio Tour website.
Italian Village Historical Walking Tour. Saturday, October 8 and Sunday, October 9 at 11 AM and 2 PM. Architectural historian John Gomez leads a tour on historic and architecturally significant sites in the Italian Village neighborhood. Tours begin at Village Park on 384–388 First Street, between Brunswick and Colgate. Sponsored by Village Neighborhood Association and Jersey City Landmarks Conservancy.
Goat Stock Festival. The Historic Jersey City and Harsimus Cemetery (453 Newark Avenue) will host its annual festival on Sunday, October 9 from noon to 8 PM. The event includes art exhibits, sculpture, live music, crafts, vendors and of course goats on hand to feed and pet. More info here.
Tales from the Crypts. Family Halloween event at the Historic Jersey City and Harsimus Cemetery (453 Newark Avenue) on October 15 from 5 to 10 PM. Pumpkin painting & childrens’ games for the little ones; food, refreshments and fortune tellers for the not-so-little ones. Details here.
The Hamilton Park House Tour takes place on Sunday, October 16 from 10 AM to 4 PM rain or shine. This walking tour of the Hamilton Park neighborhood’s finest interior spaces, with stops at top retail and dining destinations, benefits St. Lucy’s Shelter. Details at the Hamilton Park Neighborhood Association website.
Embankment Preservation Coalition Annual Members Meeting is set for Sunday, October 16 from 5 to 6:30 PM at Grace Church Van Vorst, 39 Erie Street (entrance on 2nd). Speakers include Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop and Jersey City Parks Coalition President Laura Skolar. EPC will also present a slide talk on the history and vision for the Harsimus Branch Embankment.
Afternoon of Fright on 4th Street. Harsimus Cove’s own FREE, fun-filled family-friendly Halloween block party screams into action on October 22 from 2 to 6 PM. Costumes, live music, entertainment and activities. More details here.
Terminal of Terror. Hosted by Chicpeajc, this Halloween costume party will be on October 29 from 9 PM to 2 AM at the Central Railroad of New Jersey Terminal in Liberty State Park, featuring food, drink, DJs and a Haunted Baggage Tunnel. Details here and here.
Family Halloween Bash on the Pedestrian Mall. Another Halloween event right here in Harsimus Cove. Hosted by Historic Downtown SID on Halloween Day, October 31 from 3 to 6 PM, there will be face painting, a bouncy house, music and candy! More info here.