Home Essex CountyBelleville 23 News Stories You Missed This Week in Montclair + Beyond

23 News Stories You Missed This Week in Montclair + Beyond

by The Montclair Girl Team
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The autumnal equinox makes the seasonal change official — time to break out the sweaters and cozy socks for fall.  It’s been another busy week in Essex County and we’ve got all the headlines to get you caught up. Among the highlights: a community cleanup is scheduled in Bloomfield; Belleville Police host a pop-up lemonade stand; and the Montclair Planning Board rejects a revised plan for the Lackawanna Plaza redevelopment. Read on for more news from Montclair, Bloomfield, and beyond for the week ending September 24th, 2023.

Toni’s Kitchen + St. Mark’s Church Team Up for Free Farmer’s Market


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The Ivy at Chatham

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St. Mark’s Church and Toni’s Kitchen have partnered up to offer the community a free, monthly farmer’s market. According to Montclair Local, the market will take place on the first and third Saturday of every month from 11AM to 1PM. The market will be at the Bullock School parking lot, located at 55 Washington Street. No registration is required.

Boutique Fitness Studio ‘MEGA’ is Coming to Montclair

mega fitness studio montclair nj

A Jersey City-based boutique fitness studio is making its way to Montclair. Founded by soon-to-be Montclair resident, Kyra Huxel, MEGA group-style fitness classes are centered around the Lagree Method, a high-intensity, low-impact, core-focused, workout. MEGA’s second New Jersey studio is set to open at 172 Glenridge Avenue this fall, pending equipment arrivals. Read on for what we know about MEGA, the newest fitness studio to arrive in Montclair.

Caldwell University Hosts Athletic Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony

Per Patch, five former student-athletes at Caldwell University were inducted into the Athletic Hall of Fame at a ceremony on Friday, September 22nd. Two additional inductees were recipients of the Cougar Pride Award, athletic supporters Vic + Mary Basile.

Scarecrow Contest at Van Vleck House + Gardens

Registration is now open for neighbors to participate in Van Vleck House and Gardens’ Scarecrow in the Gardens event, according to Montclair Local. Individuals and groups are invited to design their own seasonal displays as part of an exhibit that will be on-site at Van Vleck in October. Visitors vote for the winner, who will receive $500 to donate to a charity of their choice. Registration is free, and available now.

Vanguard Theater + Out Montclair Team Up for 2023/2024 Season

The Vanguard Theater has partnered with Out Montclair for a series of performances that will support the LGBTQ community during the 2023-2024 season. Per Montclair Local, the series will include two drag shows and seven ‘Sip and Sings’ which are piano-bar style performances with group singalongs. A full schedule and tickets are available at the Vanguard website.

Community Cleanup Event in Bloomfield

The township of Bloomfield announced a community-wide cleanup event via a press release. The event will take place on October 21st from 8AM to 12PM. Residents who sign up online by October 14th can get free supplies from the town.

Montclair Planning Board Rejects Revised Lackawanna Plan

Per Montclair Local, the latest design for the Lackawanna Plaza in Montclair is out of sync with the town’s master plan. The Montclair Planning Board made the pronouncement at its meeting on Monday, September 18th, and will be sending a formal letter of its recommendations to the Township Council. This version of the redevelopment plan was viewed as a ‘slimmed down’ version, with changes such as reducing building heights and lowering the total number of housing units from 375 to 300.

The Greening of Newark

Per Patch, dozens of trees have been planted in Newark as part of a federal grant to green the city. A combination of federal grants and local volunteers made it possible to plant the trees, which were located throughout the city. The Nature Conservancy recently awarded the city an $8 million grant to plant more trees to expand the city’s tree canopy.

Concession Stand Incoming at Bloomfield’s Foley Field

A new snack shack will be built at Foley Field in Bloomfield, thanks to a donation from the non-profit Foley Field Foundation, according to Patch. The $80,000 donation was made to the Bloomfield Township Board of Education at its September 12th meeting. The Foley Field Foundation has worked since 2009 to improve the field, and previous improvements include a new scoreboard, two ticket booths, and a new sound system.

Montclair Film Fest Announces Opening, Closing, + Centerpiece Films

Per Montclair Local, organizers of the Montclair Film Festival have announced the films for the festival’s Opening, Closing, and Centerpiece nights. The Opening Night film is Dream Scenario, starring Nicolas Cage, which provides a clever take on contemporary celebrity culture. The Closing Night film, Eileen, offers a gripping and neo-noir unforgettable finale. Stamped From the Beginning and The Holdovers are Documentary and Fiction Centerpieces, while Robot Dreams is the Family Centerpiece film.

President of Newark School Board Resigns

According to Patch, the President of the Newark School Board has resigned less than a month into the 2023/2024 school year. Asia Norton was elected in May 2023 after being a board member since 2018. It is not known who will take over her position.

Belleville Police Host Pop-Up Lemonade Stand

The Belleville Police Department hosted a pop-up lemonade stand during a recent heatwave, per Patch. Police officers went around town to visit with residents and hand out free lemonade.

New Exhibit Opens at Turtle Back Zoo

A new exhibit called Island Giants has opened at Essex County’s Turtle Back Zoo. According to Patch, the exhibit features alligators and Komodo dragons. Work began on the new space in November 2022.

Signature Exhibit Selected for Newark Arts Festival


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Organizers of the Newark Arts Festival announced the signature exhibition of the show. Per Patch, Cross Cultural Perspectives, an exhibit co-curated by Adrienne Wheeler, Visual Artist and Independent Curator, and Atteqa Ali, Associate Curator, Arts of Global Asia at The Newark Museum of Art, will be the signature exhibit. In the exhibit, artworks in a wide range of media extend the theme into narratives of social justice, cultural identity, equality, the immigrant experience, and spiritual connections.

Studio Montclair, Inc. + Out Montclair Present Art Exhibit

Per Montclair Local, Out Montclair and Studio Montclair Inc. announced an exhibition called I A Here. The exhibit will run until October 20th and features artworks in a variety of media that address what it means to be a part of the LGBTQIA community. The gallery is located at 127 Bloomfield Avenue in Montclair.

Technology High School in Newark Wins National Award

A Newark school has been awarded a prestigious Blue Ribbon Award, per Patch. The National Blue Ribbon School program recognized schools’ academic achievement. Technology High School in Newark was recognized for its high graduation rates and consistently high student scores on standardized tests.

Bond Vet Opening in Montclair

Bond Vet Montclair

Going to the vet doesn’t have to be a stressful experience for pets or pet parents. With same-day appointments, telehealth, and a minimalist office designed with both the human’s and pet’s comfort in mind, Bond Vet is changing the game when it comes to veterinary services. Bond Vet is opening its newest location at 640 Bloomfield Avenue in Montclair on Monday, September 25th and the team is throwing an Open House Pawty complete with photo-ops and freebies on Sunday, September 24th from 11AM-1PM to celebrate. Keep reading to learn more about the grand opening of Bond Vet + an exclusive offer for The Montclair Girl readers.

Candlelit Vigil in Montclair


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According to Montclair Local, AAPI Montclair hosted a candlelit vigil in honor of Jaahnavi Kandula, a California woman who was killed earlier this year in a car accident with a police vehicle. During the vigil, speakers discussed Jaahnavi’s life and accomplishments. The vigil also served as an opportunity to discuss anti-Asian sentiment.

Winners Named in Essex County Senior Art Contest

Winners have been announced in the annual Essex County Senior Art Contest. Per TapInto, five Livingston residents were among the 32 winners. There were over 130 entries into the juried art show.

Montclair Dad Advocates on Behalf of His Daughter for Lulu’s Law

A Montclair father has turned his family’s heartbreak into an advocacy campaign to educate people about the causes and treatments of sepsis, according to Patch. Lukas Hayes’ daughter Ana Lucia, known as Lulu, died from complications of sepsis in 2014. Lukas was part of a delegation that visited Washington DC as part of advocacy efforts on World Sepsis Day. Lulu’s Law was introduced by Representative Mikie Sherrill, who represents Montclair.

Concern Over the Future of 200-Year-Old Trees in Montclair

Montclair neighbors of Woodman Field are concerned about the town’s plans for the 200-year-old trees that surround the park and their homes. Per Montclair Local, residents have tried to meet with city officials to get more information about renovation plans, but each time, the meetings have been canceled. Residents are concerned for the fate of the trees, which they say are a critical part of the neighborhood.

Groundbreaking Ceremony for Pedestrian Bridge in Newark

A groundbreaking ceremony was held this week for a project that will connect two neighborhoods by a pedestrian bridge. Per Patch, the Mulberry Commons Pedestrian Bridge will connect the Iron Bound neighborhood to downtown Newark. The bridge will be a new way for pedestrians to access Newark Penn Station and the Iron Bound neighborhood. It will also connect Penn Station to the Prudential Center.

New Spot, The Falafel Guys, Opens in Montclair

New food and drink spots open up in MTC all the time, and now there’s yet another one to check out. Falafel Guys, located at 148 Bloomfield Avenue in Montclair, serves up Mediterranean-style food like falafels, gyros, and hummus, among other dishes. Read on to learn more about Montclair’s newest Mediterranean spot, Falafel Guys.

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