There is never a dull moment in Essex County, which is why we cover the news in the Montclair and greater Essex County + North Jersey area so you don’t miss a beat. Among the headlines: a recent study shows New Jersey is obsessed with gym time; Montclair puts on Prince Hamlet for Deaf + hearing audiences; Maplewood holds cannabis expungement event; and so much more. Keep reading for all the news you missed this week in Essex County and beyond.
The Montclair Girl Founder Jen Tripucka on NPR Talking All Things Fall
This week The Montclair Girl Founder, Jen Tripucka was featured on NPR talking about all the local things there are to do in Essex County this fall — like Oktoberfest at Montclair Brewery. Click here to take a listen + get the inside scoop on corn mazes, apple farms and pumpkin patches, just a quick drive or train ride away.
Essex County Police Investigate Fatal Shooting of Montclair Man
On Thursday, September 22nd at around 1AM, police responded to reports of a shooting in Orange, per Baristanet. Officers located 28-year-old Katon Washington in the area of Aldine Street and Cleveland Street, having suffered gunshot wounds. He was pronounced dead at 1:43AM at University Hospital in Newark.
Bloomfield Celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month with ‘Fiesta Latina’
The Bloomfield community gathered at a family-friendly ‘Fiesta Latina’ event held this weekend on Saturday, September 24th. According to Patch, the event was in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month. Attendees enjoyed live music, art vendors, face painting, games, art exhibits, and food + drinks.
Ambulance Unit Holds Block Party in Montclair
On Saturday, September 24th, the Montclair Ambulance Unit held a block party from 9AM to 3PM. According to Patch, the event featured CPR demonstrations, an open house, ambulance tours, and a dunk tank.
Los Angeles-Based Massage Company Expands to New Jersey
The NOW Massage, a company based in Los Angeles, is taking its first expansion across the country — to New Jersey. The therapeutic massage provider recently announced it plans to open at 425 Bloomfield Avenue in Montclair this fall. According to Patch, guests can anticipate energy-balancing massages and treatment enhancements like Hemp Calm Balm.
Retailers Compete for 2 Available Recreational Marijuana Licenses in Montclair
Seven retailers are vying for 2 available recreational marijuana licenses in Montclair. This comes just one month after the first license was approved, Montclair Local reported. Whichever parties are granted the remaining licenses will be in competition with Ascend, located at 395 Bloomfield Avenue, which recently added recreational sales to its medicinal marijuana business.
Montclair to Vote on Fire Protection Partnership with Glen Ridge
This coming week, Montclair Township Council is expected to vote on a fire protection partnership with Glen Ridge, per Montclair Local. The new contract with Montclair would raise Glen Ridge’s cost annually until 2032. At that point, Glen Ridge would have the option to renew for an additional five years.
Harvey’s Handrolled Bagels Opens in Montclair
If there’s one thing Essex County does right, it’s bagels. In the spirit of continuing that tradition, Montclair is welcoming a brand new bagel shop. For the past few months, Harvey’s Handrolled Bagels has operated as a weekend pop-up shop in the bakery section of Walnut Street Kitchen. Now, the brand has a storefront of its own at the same location, 98 Walnut Street in Montclair, and is officially open for business, per a press release. Bagel lovers can expect a wide variety of flavors + breakfast sandwiches. Click here to read about this new bagel shop.
Ruthie’s Bar-B-Q in Montclair Reopens After Kitchen Fire
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Ruthie’s Bar-B-Q, located at 64 ½ Chestnut Street in Montclair, recently closed following a kitchen fire in late July. According to Montclair Local, the restaurant is back up and running. The fire was caused by a malfunction in the meat smoker causing minimal damage and no injuries. However, the restaurant had to clear a series of permits to make sure everything was safe for reopening.
Manufacturer’s Village in East Orange Hosts Annual Open Studio Event
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Manufacturer’s Village will host its Annual Open Studios event on Saturday, October 15th and Sunday, October 16th. According to Baristanet, this event gives the public a chance to get up close and personal with local artists and their studio spaces. Artists include painters, sculptors, woodworkers, quilters, designers, printmakers, photographers, multi-media artists, and more. The event will take place from 1PM to 6PM.
Charm Thai Cuisine Opens in Montclair
Montclair Center is home to a new Thai restaurant, Charm Thai Cuisine, per Patch. The restaurant, located at 600 Bloomfield Avenue in Montclair, serves traditional Thai food from mild and spicy to sweet and savory.
T-Shirt Scam Hits Essex + Hudson Counties
A recent t-shirt scam has hit social media in several New Jersey counties, including Essex County, Patch reported. The perpetrators gain access to school, police department, fire department, or community Facebook groups and sell t-shirts specific to that group. In some cases, sellers say their autistic child is the one who designed and is selling the shirt. Authorities believe this may simply be a way to get people’s information.
West Orange Arts Council Presents Hispanic Heritage Month Celebration
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The West Orange Arts Council put on an art exhibit entitled, “Festivals, Fiestas, and Feasts” in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month. According to Baristanet, the exhibit features work from local Hispanic artists including: Judyann Affronti, Rey Arvelo, Maria Estrela, Stanley Gavidia, Carol Jenkins, Fernando Mariscal, and more.
Maplewood Public Library Releases Statement on Banned Books
At the start of Banned Books Week, the Maplewood Public Library released a statement highlighting the vital role libraries play in the community, Patch reported. President of the Maplewood Memorial Library Board of Trustees, Kate McCaffrey, wrote the statement. She wrote, “Yet as we break ground on a new building, a rising tide of intolerance across the US reinforces the importance of the library, not only as a physical gathering space, but as an institution devoted to free speech and free expression.”
Giveaway Event Provides School Supplies, Water, + Bus Tickets in Newark
The Newark Water Coalition hosted a giveaway event on Friday, September 30th at the Clinton Avenue location. According to Patch, the Tools for School event included giveaways for school supplies, bus tickets, book bags, water, and more.
Bloomfield to Host Fall Clean-up Day 10/22
The Township of Bloomfield is hosting a community clean-up day on Saturday, October 22nd. According to Patch, the event will run from 8AM to 12PM and the township will provide garbage bags, gloves, garbage pickers, shovels, and t-shirts. Register by October 16th to get involved.
Maplewood Held Cannabis Expungement Event
On Wednesday, September 21st, Maplewood hosted an event on social equity and expungement laws, Patch reported. The speakers included SOMA Action, TheCannaBossLady, and Mojo Botanica, and attorney Michael Hoffman, who discussed the ins and outs of cannabis law and how one can go about getting cannabis offenses off your record. Guests enjoyed Mediterranean food from Chutzpah Kitchen and wine from Neighbors Wine Shop.
Essex + Bergen County Schools Receive Blue Ribbon 2022 Award
Elementary, Middle, and High Schools across the nation were recently awarded the Blue Ribbon distinction for 2022. Among them were nine schools from New Jersey including three from Essex County and Bergen County: Cliffside Park School 4, Dwight-Englewood Upper School, and Redwood Elementary School West in West Orange. According to NJ.com, the designation is based on several factors, including a school’s overall academic performance and progress in closing achievement gaps.
Bivio Pizza Napoletana in Montclair Officially Closes
Bivio Pizza, located at 107 Pine Street in Montclair, permanently closed on Saturday, September 17th. The owner took to Instagram to share the news saying, “Ciao a tutti, The time has come… After nearly five years of offering true pizza Napoletana in Montclair, Bivio will be closing our doors as of September 17, 2022. Bivio has been a wonderful journey for Jackie and me. Our vision of opening a small authentic pizzeria in June 2011 has exceeded all of our hopes and dreams. It has been our pleasure to serve our guests/friends with the best quality ingredients available to offer a true pizza Napoletana. We thank all of you for your support and you will always remain special to us. Grazie mille e tante auguri! Tommaso, Jackie and La Bambina.” Click here for what we know.
Summer Parking at Newark Airport No Longer Includes Surcharge
Drive-up parking rates at Newark International Airport recently decreased from $60 – $70, depending on the lot, to $40 and $65 According to NJ.com, the drive-up rate stayed at $29 for parking at the further economy lot. Newark isn’t the only airport to decrease parking rates either. Both LaGuardia and JFK reduced summer period surcharge prices, which were put into place in July to help manage a surge in travel which put a strain on airport parking facilities.
Montclair Puts on Prince Hamlet for Deaf + Hearing Audiences
The cast at Montclair State’s Peak Performances, located at 1 E Normal Avenue in Montclair, is challenging assumptions in a new rendition of Prince Hamlet, per Baristanet. In addition to a gender-bent reimagining of the classic tale, the performance will also feature visual/ASL translation making it accessible for both hearing and Deaf audiences. Performances will run through Sunday, September 25th.
NJ Secretary of State to Join YWCA Northern NJ + Montclair State at Rally
On Tuesday, September 20th, YWCA Northern New Jersey and the Montclair State University Student Government Association held a rally to commemorate National Voter Registration Day. New Jersey Secretary of State Tahesha Way joined the event held at Montclair State University campus quad as the guest speaker. The goal of this event was to register students to vote ahead of the midterm elections and spotlight issues directly affecting them.
Study Shows New Jersey is Obsessed with Gym Time
New research from a recent study revealed that New Jersey residents are the most obsessed with hitting the gym. Fitness experts at Fitness volt analyzed Google Trends data over the course of one year, focusing on search terms used by gym-goers. New Jersey scored a 672, leading the country by a landslide. New Jersey was followed by California and Hawaii.
Massoni Ristorante to Open in South Orange
According to North Jersey, a new authentic Italian restaurant is coming to Essex County this winter. Slated to open in December or January, Massoni Ristorante will feature food from all corners of Italy including bucatini alla amatriciana, pasta Bolognese, and cacio e pepe. The restaurant will be located at 1 South Orange Avenue in South Orange.
7 Essex County Towns Switch Electric Power Supplier
Seven Essex County towns have recently switched electric power suppliers back to PSE&G, per Patch. The towns include Glen Ridge, Glen Rock, Livingston, Maplewood, Montclair, South Orange, and Verona. The SEA’s current contract with Energy Harbor LLC ends this month but according to market officials, rising energy prices have skewed the market in favor of PSE&G.
13th Annual Equality Walk is Happening Next Month in Montclair
The 13th Annual Equality Walk is happening on Sunday, October 9th at the First Congregational Church in Montclair. October is LGBTQ History Month, the anniversary of Marriage Equality in New Jersey, as well as National Coming Out Day — so it’s a big month to celebrate. The walk will begin at 12PM and everyone is welcome.