Jersey City to host its first Veterans Day Parade

On Nov. 8, Jersey City will hold a parade in honor of Veterans Day, the first in the city’s history.
The parade will kick off at City Hall at 10 a.m. and will proceed to the Historic Jersey City & Harsimus Cemetery where a program featuring speeches and musical performances will be held. A 21-gun salute by the Jersey City Police Department will be a parade highlight, as well as a wreath laying ceremony and flag blessing at the cemetery following the parade. Another parade highlight will be the contingent of South Vietnamese soldiers who fought alongside the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War.
“I’ve always said that I got more out of the Marines as a human being than the Marines got out of me,” said Mayor Steven Fulop, who served in the Marine’s 6th Engineer Support Battalion during the early days of the Iraq War. “Our armed forces – and everyone who has served or still serves in them – deserve to be honored in the communities in which they live. I couldn’t be prouder to begin a new tradition this weekend.”
Both Mayor Fulop and U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez are scheduled to participate in the “Parade of Veterans and Heroes.”
Sunday’s parade will include veterans, current active duty military members, public safety personnel, high school marching bands, and numerous floats and military vehicles. Other participants include Welcome Home Vets of New Jersey, a statewide organization that helps veterans assimilate back into civilian life, as well as the national organization of Team Red White and Blue that connects veterans through physical and social activities such as marathons and 5Ks. Active duty military personnel will be attending from the Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst.

Jersey City Theater Center to holds explorative exhibit

How do Origins affect our lives and society? That’s the question Jersey City Theater Center explores in a series of events that started on Oct. 29 through visual arts, theater, lectures, presentations, readings and film. Not only will the series, which runs through Dec. 3, explore the theme of Origins, but will also offer a chance to take a unique look at different cultures. Origins was also made possible through a grant by the New Jersey Council of the Humanities, one of the few grants of this kind given to a Hudson County based nonprofit arts organization. For more information, go to JCTC is located at 335-337 Newark Ave.

De Niro film ‘Ellis’ will be showed at the Loews Theater

“Ellis,” a short film starring Robert De Niro will be aired at the Landmark Loews Jersey Theatre on Saturday, Nov. 21 at 8 p.m. The film is about the stories of immigrants who came to America through Ellis Island. Admission is free.

Elected officials form rail coalition

Passaic, Bergen, and Hudson County officials announced this week the creation of a group to advocate for a commuter rail project.
Elected officials from across those counties, led by Rep. Bill Pascrell (D – NJ), came together to announce the formation of the North Jersey Rail Coalition. The NJRC is advocating to restart the dormant New Jersey Transit project to reintroduce passenger rail service on the New York Susquehanna & Western right of way traversing Passaic, Bergen, and Hudson Counties. The first phase of the project would encompass finalizing the draft environmental impact study of traveling approximately eight miles in an easterly direction.
The rail service would begin in Hawthorne in Passaic County and end in Hackensack in Bergen County. There would be five stops in Paterson, a stop in Elmwood Park, and two stops in Hackensack. The second phase of the project – where officials want an environmental impact study to begin – would move further east into Hudson County, providing a connection to the Hudson Bergen Light Rail at the Tonnelle Avenue Station in North Bergen.
“The North Jersey Rail Coalition is… sending one clear message: we need expanded mass transit options in North Jersey to drive economic development, connect major employment centers, and take pressure off of New Jersey’s highway system,” stated Rep. Pascrell, who has been securing dollars for and pushing this rail service since his election to the House in 1997. “It is imperative that we continue to invest in our mass transit infrastructure to get people off the roads, and for the first time, provide a direct rail link between two of New Jersey’s biggest municipalities: Paterson and Jersey City.”
“Investing in a world-class transportation infrastructure is one of the best ways to provide an immediate boost to the economy and to support long-term growth and opportunity, especially in our cities,” said Senate President Stephen Sweeney. “The expansion of rail service, including light rail, is a key part of a smart transportation strategy that attracts business and increases housing values. The Hudson-Bergen Light Rail is ready to be expanded to Bergen County and Englewood, and is one of my top priorities for the renewal of the Transportation Trust Fund. I support the County of Passaic, Congressman Pascrell and local elected officials and stakeholders in pushing for an expedited planning and assessment process for the proposed Hawthorne-Paterson-Hackensack light rail line.”
The second phase of the project envisions an expansion into Hudson County to create a direct connection to the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail at the Tonnelle Avenue Station. The line would travel on the same existing NYS&W right of way and provide a direct link to the Vince Lombardi Park & Ride and provide an alternative to vehicular traffic in one of the most heavily congested portions of the State. Furthermore, along with the planned expansion of the Hudson-Bergen Light rail into Bergen County, North Jersey will have a true regional mass transit network.
“Smart investment in transportation upgrades and funding the Transportation Trust Fund (TTF) remains my priority and a path to economic growth,” said Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto. “As a strong advocate for infrastructure and transportation upgrades, this rail project, which connects Bergen, Passaic and Hudson counties, creates an opportunity for economic growth and increased access to good jobs.”
The commuter line would operate Federal Rail Administration compliant Diesel Multiple Unit vehicles avoiding the high costs of electrifying the tracks and providing a schedule comparable to light rail and the River Line operation in South Jersey. In 2009, New Jersey Transit estimated the project would cost $156 million with construction lasting approximately three years. Throughout most of the 20th century, passenger service was operated on NYS&W right of way providing mass transit connections across North Jersey.
“If you want to see where economic development happens, look around a transit station,” said Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop, “A transit line connecting Passaic, Bergen, and Hudson counties would expand job opportunities; spur development in growing cities like Hackensack, Paterson, and of course Jersey City; and improve the quality of life for residents of all three counties. Getting this done should be a top priority.”

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