Welcome back for another roundup of all the newsworthy stories you missed in Montclair + the surrounding areas. Among the local headlines: Verona High School seniors now have the option to do dual enrollment courses at Montclair State University, Montclair’s 30-day indoor mask mandate has been extended until the end of spring, AKT Fitness opens this month in Verona, and so much more. Keep reading for all the news you missed this week in Montclair, Bloomfield, + beyond in Essex County.
The West Orange Classic Film Festival is Back – Comedy Edition
The West Orange Classic Film Festival is back for 2022 – but this time, a comedy edition. The festival screenings will take place at the AMC Theatre in Essex Green Shopping Center West Orange on Sundays from January 30th through March 13th. The festival is sponsored by the West Orange Arts Council. Click here to read about what to expect.
7 Doors Down Ramen Co. Opening Soon in Bloomfield
There’s a new restaurant coming soon to Bloomfield called 7 Doors Down Ramen Company. The restaurant will serve classic ramen menu items plus Peruvian favorites including ceviches and steaks. The restaurant comes from the same team behind Blue Steel Pizza Company, which calls the new restaurant its “illegitimate child,” and recently held a pop-up for the restaurant to preview the menu items. Click here to read more about 7 Doors Down Ramen Company.
Oldest New Jersey Resident Dies at 111
The oldest resident of New Jersey died at 111, per NJ.com. Edith Hodes Rose was born in Newark in 1910 and was the oldest living person in New Jersey at the time of her death, according to the Gerontology Research Group, Rose was also in the top 30 oldest residents of the United States. She is survived by her three kids, four grandchildren, and 11 great-grandchildren.
Montclair Brewery Competes on Discovery Channel
Montclair Brewery competed on the Discovery Channel this week. The post said, “JUST IN!!! Join us tonight from 7:45 to 10 p.m. as we watch our head brewer compete on Discovery Channel @discoveryplus @discovery.official.moonshiners Moonshiners: Master Distillers. We’ll view last season’s episode and the brand-new episode airing for the first time tonight! Let’s see if he finally redeems himself or not! We’re offering special-priced flights tonight during the watch party.”
Big Brother Big Sisters of Essex County to Move to Newark
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The Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS) of Essex, Hudson, and Union Counties will now have a new home, per Tap Into. The new home in downtown Newark will allow the organization to privately conduct interviews with children and their families in order to match them with a potential adult volunteer. In moving downtown the BBBS Essex, Hudson, and Union counties branch’s 25 full-time employees will have more workspace to provide critical mentoring services to clients.
New Law to Incorporate Inclusive History in Classrooms
Gov. Phil Murphy signed a new pair of New Jersey education laws getting praise from advocates, Patch reported. The two laws, S4021/A6100 and S3764/A3369, will create Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) curriculum requirements for schools and will establish a commission for Asian American Heritage within the state Department of Education. According to Murphy, the laws are to ensure that the contributions, history, and heritage of AAPI residents are included in the New Jersey Student Learning Standards for Social Studies for students in K-12.
Potential Car Thief Caught Red Handed in Montclair
A Montclair resident caught a car thief in the act and chased him away, Tap Into reported. A Lloyd Road resident reported to the Montclair Police Department that an unknown man tried to steal his 2021 Mercedes. The resident chased after the man and who got back into a white SUV and drove away.
Montclair Extends Mask Mandate to Spring
Montclair’s 30-day indoor mask mandate has been extended until the end of spring, reports Patch. The Montclair Town Council has voted to extend the local mask mandate through March 31st when the original mandate was supposed to be lifted on January 21st. The council has an option to rescind the order in February if the spread of COVID-19 lessens.
Verona High School Now Offering Dual Enrollment with MSU
Verona High School seniors now have the option to take dual enrollment courses at Montclair State University, per My Verona NJ. The dual enrollment program with the university will allow VHS students to take up to 12 college credits for a cheaper price per credit and VHS students won’t have to pay MSU student fees. The courses completed at MSU would count towards graduation from VHS as well as a full degree from MSU.
Bloomfield Police Share Tips to Encourage Car Safety
Bloomfield Police are reminding car owners to take preventative measures against car theft and burglaries, Patch reported. On Wednesday, January 19th, the Bloomfield Police Department released a list of tips to prevent motor vehicle thefts and thefts from autos. There have been instances throughout the past week and police are reminding citizens to be aware of it.
Bloomfield Resident Goes From Watching Films to Making Them
Bloomfield resident Damon “Abwon” Clindinin has gone from working at movie theaters to receiving awards for his own short film, per Baristanet. Clindinin formed his production company, Moonlight Media LLC, with a former colleague Jennifer Dominguez in May of 2018. Over the past three years, Moonlight Media has produced three short films which have received awards.
Montclair Board of Education Appoints New Member
The Montclair Board of Education has chosen a new member to fill the seat of Alfred Davis, who died last month, per Patch. Four people were interviewed during a public school board meeting to fill the seat and the Board of Education selected Mfreke (Monk) Inyang to take the seat. The seat will be up for election in 2022 and Inyang will serve until January 2023, and he can also run for election.
Montclair State University Students Make Dean’s List
Montclair State University students from Kenilworth have made the Dean’s List for Fall 2021, according to Tap Into. The Dean’s List is issued after the close of every Fall and Spring semester and it gives recognition to students who received a 3.500 GPA or higher if the minimum of 12 credits is being earned. There are eight students from Kenilworth who made the Dean’s List.
Montclair Schools to Receive $300k for Silent Panic Alarms
The Montclair Public School District will get over $300,000 in state funding to install silent panic alarms, according to Patch. This comes after Gov Phil Murphy signed legislation that appropriates over $5 million from the “Securing Our Children’s Future Bond Act” to provide grants for school security projects in New Jersey schools. This legislation will pay for the installation of panic alarms that will be able to contact law enforcement officers during an emergency.
Newark Winter Village Open Through January 30th
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Newark Social announced a new lineup of special events in celebration of the Newark Winter Village Event, per Baristanet. In a partnership with the New Jersey Devils, two complimentary tickets to an upcoming hockey game will be given to every person who purchases a ticket for the Winter Village in January. The Newark Winter Village event will run through January 30th and those who attend can go ice-skating and play a variety of games and activities.
Montclair to Replace Tennis Courts with Skate Park
Montclair is moving towards expanding its temporary skate park by taking over all four tennis courts at Rand Park, according to Montclair Local. Some tennis enthusiasts are not happy with the loss of the courts as the Township Council is steadily moving towards a permanent skate park. The Township Council is looking for a location to put a permanent skate park since the tennis courts at Rand Park are being used by tennis enthusiasts.
Montclair Public Schools to Continue 10-day Quarantine Requirement
The Montclair Public School District will continue to enforce a 10-day quarantine period for students and staff who test positive for COVID-19, Montclair Local reported. This comes even after the New Jersey Department of Health announced updated guidance for schools, recommending a five-day quarantine period, which is in line with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control. In Superintendent Jonathan Ponds’ community message, it says if you were exposed to someone with COVID-19 but remain asymptomatic then you do not need to be quarantined.
Montclair State University Only NJ School to Join Common App Direct Admissions Program
Montclair State University is one of six schools in the nation to be named a partner institution of the Common App’s Direct Admission Program for 2022, according to a press release from the University. MSU is the only school in New Jersey to join the initiative designed to help qualified students get into participating institutions in their home state. This January, 3,000 New Jersey students will be offered direct admission to MSU for the fall 2022 semester as part of this program. Students will be eligible based on the state residency and GPA information provided in their Common App account.
Montclair Receives $300k to Launch Anti-Hate Initiative
Montclair will launch an anti-hate task force to address the increasing trend of white supremacists and neo-Nazis targeting the community, per Montclair Local. In late December, Mayor Sean Spiller announced that Montclair was awarded a $300,000 grant from the Department of Justice to form an Anti-Hate Crime Community Task Force. This grant came through an application by the Montclair Police Department.
League of Women Voters to Hold Montclair BOE Candidate Forum
The League of Women Voters of the Montclair Area will be holding a Board of Education Candidate Forum, according to Baristanet. The forum will be Thursday, February 17th, and they will invite the candidates who filed a petition to run for the Montclair Board of Education. The forum will be broadcast live on Channel 34, YouTube, and Radio Free Montclair. Questions for candidates will be able to be submitted when registration for attendance is confirmed.
Fitness Studio AKT Now Open in Verona
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AKT, the fitness and dance concept developed by celebrity trainer Anna Kaiser, is now a member of the Verona community, according to a press release. The new fitness studio’s goal is to bring its passion for health and wellness to local residents, regardless of age, body type, or fitness levels. AKT offers four signature classes: dance, bands, tone, and circuit and anyone can attend them. AKT in Verona is located in the Pilgrim Shopping Center at 307 Pompton Avenue.
Out Montclair Seeking Talent for Summer Pride Events
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Out Montclair is partnering with Montclair Brewery in a beer label competition as part of this year’s anticipated Pride summer events. Out Montclair is calling for local talent to be featured in events happening in June.
The press release stated, “To celebrate this momentous event and elevate and include the local talent we know is all around us, we invite New Jersey designers to show us what makes them and our town special, and create a label that represents their “Pride in Montclair.” The winning design will be featured on special edition cans and promotional materials for Montclair Pride 2022!”
Red Baraat Festival of Colors Coming to South Orange PAC
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The Red Baraat Festival of Colors will be coming to the South Orange Performing Arts Center on Friday, March 11th. This event celebrates the Hindu holiday of Holi accompanied by South Asian music. Red Baraat Festival of Colors debuted in 2012 at a sold out Le Poisson Rouge in New York City and it has since expanded to over a dozen cities in the United States.