23 Montclair + Bloomfield News Stories You Missed This Week

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Every week we bring you the highlights in the news, so you can stay up-to-date on what is happening in Montclair + surrounding areas. Among the local headlines — the Montclair Planning Board approves changes to Bellevue Theatre; the Montclair Art Museum has announced a new exhibit; Newark to host first Peace Week; and so much more. Keep reading for all the news you missed this week in Montclair, Bloomfield, + beyond in Essex County.


First Plastic-Free Grocery to Open in Montclair

Dry Goods Refillery, a plastic-free grocery store, is opening this week as New Jersey’s first dedicated plastic-free grocery store. The grand opening will take place this week on Thursday, September 2nd. The Instagram post says, “If you just can’t wait— check out the link on our website (link in bio) to try and snag one of our 1:1 pre-launch appointments (starting 8/23) to privately check out the shop before we open and help us get everything just right. Only a few slots left!”


Korean-Style Restaurant ‘CM Chicken’ Now Open in Montclair

 

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CM Chicken has set up shop at 527 Bloomfield Avenue, in Montclair. The Korean-style restaurant serves all-natural, never-frozen chicken which is marinated in a secret sauce for 24 hours. The Instagram post says, “Always keeping the extraordinary taste of Tikku chicken. CM Chicken promises to deliver superior customer service with highly-trained staff members from 2009.”


Jazz House Alumni All-Stars to Perform at Montclair Festival

On Thursday, September 26th at 6PM, the Jazz House Alumni All-Stars will perform at the Blue in Green: Cocktails + Concert in a Garden event. The Instagram account shared, “The evening culminates with an exclusive and area-premiere performance by singer @daniellepondermusic, who is a powerful storyteller through her authentic songwriting and unforgettable voice. Ms. Ponder comes to Montclair just off the heels of her acclaimed Newport Jazz Festival debut, where she received multiple standing ovations for her soulful and stirring performance.”  100% of proceeds will go to locally-owned JAZZ HOUSE KiDS.


Greenway Markets to Open in Maplewood Village

The Instagram account @maplewoodnj shared this week that Greenway Markets will be opening soon in the shopping center. The opening of a grocery store is expected to increase foot traffic in the village shopping center, which has struggled with pandemic-related closures.


Fleet Feet Montclair Hosting End of Summer Celebration

On Thursday, September 2nd at 6PM Fleet Feet will be hosting a Pub Run to celebrate the end of summer. For Thursday’s event, the first round of finger food will be courtesy of @mizunorunningusa. The second event will be held on Thursday, September 16th at 6PM. The Instagram account shared, “We are teaming up with @saucony and @mezoco_catering for a Taco Thursday run/walk starting at Fleet Feet.⁠ Tacos, tees, and more courtesy of Saucony! There will be demo shoes, giveaways, and fun for all your friends and family!” Follow the link in the Fleet Feet account bio to register.


2 Winning Lottery Tickets Sold in Essex County

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On Saturday, August 21st two winning lottery tickets were sold in Essex County shops, according to RLS Media.  The first winning number was sold at Scotland Arms Liquors in Orange and the second in Carousel Convenience Store in West Orange. The prize totaled $50,000.


Montclair Jazz Festival Coming in September

The Montclair Jazz Festival will be held on Saturday, September 25th. The community is invited to attend the Grand Finale Downtown Jamboree. The Montclair Jazz Fest account shared this week via Instagram,  “150 artists — internationally acclaimed headliners, regional favorites and emerging talent — will perform on four stages spanning an all-pedestrian Bloomfield Avenue in downtown Montclair, from Lackawanna Plaza to South Park Street.”


Athleta Store to Open in Montclair

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Athleta is branching out to Upper Montclair. The brand known for its premium performance apparel for women and girls will open a new store this fall at 629 Valley Road, taking over Gap’s former location. This will be Athleta’s 14th location in New Jersey. The other locations include Bridgewater, Cherry Hill, Edgewater, Hoboken, Marlton, Morristown, Paramus, Princeton, Sea Girt, Shrewsbury, Wayne, Westfield, and Woodcliff Lake. Click here to read about Athleta and what you can expect to find inside.


Montclair Opens Arms to Afghanistan Refugees

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Montclair is open to Afghanistan refugees, according to Patch. Mayor Sean Spiller said the town is ready to accept and welcome people from Afghanistan as the nation continues to see problems resulting from Taliban control. Spiller also said he would support a council resolution affirming Montclair’s support for Afghan resettlement.


Newark Breaks Ground on $3M Transformation of Vacant Lots

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Newark has broken ground on a transformation of vacant lots into new housing, a project that’s projected to cost around $3 million, per NJ.com. The New Jersey 40 Acres and a Mule Fund is building 10 houses, four specifically for low-income families, transforming a previously empty lot. This project will include the construction of nine two-family residences and the rehabilitation of one two-family residence.


Montclair Planning Board Approves Changes to Bellevue Theatre

The Montclair Planning Board approved a resolution designating the Bellevue Theatre as an area in need of rehabilitation, reports Tap Into. This will allow the township to create a redevelopment plan for the property. It also allows the township to phase in any tax increase generated by improvements to the property over a five-year period.  


Montclair Widow Accused of Running Unlicensed Veterinary Clinic

A 39-year-old widow in Montclair is facing charges for keeping a veterinary clinic open without a license, according to NJ 101.5. Alia Muslih was arrested on Friday after running the Totowa Animal Hospital and Seven Star Pet Resort without a license. Muslih’s husband Adel Hamdan was a licensed veterinarian and passed away in December from COVID-19.  Hamdan was licensed to operate the property in Totowa until his death. 


New Salon Opens in Bloomfield

 

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Salon East held its Bloomfield grand opening event on August 24th, per the company Instagram post. Salon East’s owner, Marlene Azenha, is a licensed New Jersey stylist with over 20 years of experience. The hours of the salon are Tuesday through Saturday from 9:30AM to 7PM.


Bloomfield Group Fights for Columbus Day

 

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The Bloomfield-based Italian American One Voice Coalition has joined with other advocates to try to keep Columbus Day on the school calendars, per Patch. The Paterson Board of Education removed Columbus Day from the calendar, replacing it with Indigenous People’s Day in an effort to celebrate the legacy of America’s indigenous people and the historical contributions made by Americans of Italian heritage. IAOVC disagrees with the renaming, stating that the attempt at pleasing both groups is a disgrace and seems to pit groups against each other. 


Montclair School District Issuing Chromebooks to Every Student

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The Montclair school district will provide Chromebooks to every student in the fall, expanding on the “one-to-one” initiative announced in July, Montclair Local reports. All students in grades K through 12 will receive a Chromebook for instruction, building on the device distribution Montclair schools did for the 2020-21 school year. Whether students will be allowed to bring the devices home will be left up to the principals at each school.


Official Obituary and Service Information Released for Montclair’s Albert Pelham

The family of Montclair’s beloved Albert Pelham, who passed away last week, held a viewing service on August 26th, per Baristanet. The funeral will take place Friday at the Montclair High School Auditorium. The viewing will take place 10AM to 11AM, and the funeral service will begin at 11AM. Masks must be worn for the duration of the services. 


Montclair Art Museum Announces New Exhibit

The Montclair Art Museum announced its new exhibition, Color Riot! How Color Changed Navajo Textiles, Patch reports. This exhibit will open on September 12th. Museum members will be invited to a special preview on September 11th. The exhibit will feature works from nine highly regarded contemporary weavers such as D.Y. Begay and Marilou Shultz.


Stevie Van Zandt Headlines Montclair Literary Festival

Succeed2gether’s Montclair Literary Festival announced that Stevie Van Zandt, of The Sopranos and Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band, will headline the festival on October 2nd and 3rd, according to New Jersey Stage. The festival will feature a full day of events in a tent outside the Montclair Public Library and the First Congregational Church, with additional events online and in-person throughout the weekend. All in-person events will follow CDC and state guidelines for COVID-19 regulations.


Package Thief Steals Nike Sneakers

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A package thief stole a pair of Nike sneakers from a Lake Street residence on August 18th, per Tap Into. The package was estimated to be worth $70. Local video caught the thief opening the package and taking the sneakers, the suspect is a Caucasian male, bald, wearing gray sweatpants and no shirt.


Montclair State University Recognized for Inclusivity

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Montclair State University has been recognized by Campus Pride and Study.com for their LGBTQ services and resources, listed at number 18, reports Montclair State University. Montclair State University is the highest-ranking New Jersey school on the list, and it’s the school’s 6th time being recognized by Campus Pride. The university runs several initiatives that contribute to the recognition, including the Preferred Name Policy, the Lavender Graduation Celebration, and the Trans-Inclusive Healthcare program.


Newark to Host First Peace Week

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Mayor Ras J. Baraka recently announced that Newark will host its first-ever “Peace Week” to unite Newark residents and promote peace, per New Jersey Stage. The Peace Week will run from Monday, August 30th through Sunday, September 5th. The events for the week will include Health and Wellness Wednesday, a Resource Fair, a Day of Remembrance, and “24 Hours of Peace” at Broad and Market Streets.


Poll Finds Support Split for Charter Schools

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A new Farleigh Dickinson University poll shows that 48% of 1,100 Newark respondents are in support of charter schools, while 13% are in disagreement, according to NJ.com. Twenty percent of respondents felt indifferent, and 19% didn’t know or didn’t want to answer. A previous poll by a different organization found 66% of 516 Newarkers were in favor of charter schools.  


Annual Walk Against Domestic Violence To Take Place September 18th

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The 11th Annual Walk Against Domestic Violence is scheduled for Saturday, September 18th, per Tap Into. Start Out Fresh Intervention Advocates is hosting the event to affirm support for anyone affected by domestic violence and intimate partner violence. This event is themed “With Awareness There is Hope.”


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With two little ones at home, this North Carolina native has worked remotely for the past five years as a freelance writer. Ainsley moved to New Jersey in 2016 and fell in love with the Garden State. She is always on the lookout for what’s going on in the greater New York area, from new restaurants and businesses opening to can’t-miss events highlighting local culture. Outside of writing and being a mother, Ainsley loves to dive into a good book, practice speaking French, and dream up new ways to decorate her apartment.