“Life Of Pi”

directed by Ang Lee

Nominated for 11 Academy Awards in 2012 and winner for Best Director, Best Cinematography, Best visual Effects and Best Original Score.

“Life of Pi” is an adventure drama film

based on Yann Martel’s 2001 novel of the same name. Directed by Ang Lee, the film is based on an adapted screenplay by David Magee, and stars Suraj Sharma, Irrfan Khan, Rafe Spall, Gérard Depardieu, Tabu, and Adil Hussain.

The storyline revolves around a 16-year old Indian boy named Piscine Molitor “Pi” Patel, who survives a shipwreck in which his family dies, and is stranded in the Pacific Ocean on a lifeboat with a Bengal tiger named Richard Parker.

click below to view the trailer


Van Vorst Park Association & Friends of Van Vorst Park present

Join us Wednesday June 12th after sunset (8:30 and later)
East end of VVP
Bring a Chair-Bring a Friend!
Free Popcorn!
We will announce the rest of the season that night as well!!

We are so thankful to our wonderful and generous sponsors this year who have really helped make this season possible!
SILVERMAN-Building Neighborhoods
Aire Salon
Jersey City Medical Center
Liberty Park Cafe & Diner
Thirty Acres
Two Boots

and special thanks to the City of Jersey City.
See you in the Park!

This weekend…
Our wonderful neighbors in the Hamilton Park Neighborhood Association invite us all tomorrow Saturday June 8th 10am-6pm in Hamilton Park for their annual
PARKFEST!!!  Great shopping, yummy food & delightful entertainment.
The sun promises to return and it will be a great day!!

Next weekend…
The Hudson Shakespeare Company will perform Cyrano de Bergerac in VVP
Friday June 14th at 7pm.  Performance on the lawn–if it rains join them in the Gazebo.

Don’t forget our fabulous Farmers Market on Saturdays, Groove on Grove Wednesdays–before our movie of course!, and Creative Grove on Fridays.


Van Vorst Park Association & Friends of Van Vorst Park present

It’s going to be a beautiful night so join us this Wednesday June 12th
After sunset(8:30)
East end of VVP
Bring a Chair-Bring a Friend!
Check out a trailer of the film at
Free Popcorn!
We will be announcing the rest of the season tomorrow.
And you’ll get a chance to vote:
Blue Hawaii (Elvis Presley) or West Side Story (that one, yes!)

We are so thankful to our wonderful and generous sponsors this year who have really helped make this season possible!

SILVERMAN-Building Neighborhoods
Aire Salon
Jersey City Medical Center
Liberty Park Cafe & Diner
Me Casa
Thirty Acres
Two Boots

and special thanks to the City of Jersey City.
See you in the Park!

In the chance of inclement weather please check the following if we decide to cancel:


Twitter: @VVPAJC

or on JCList



23 May 2013, Posted by admin in News You Can Use

The Liberty State Park Footbridge, which will be known officially later this summer as the Ethel Pesin Liberty Footbridge, was opened today with a ribbon cutting ceremony.

Back in January, a coalition of concerned neighbors from various neighborhood associations got together with City Engineer, Jeff Reeves to discuss how best to expedite the planning and construction of this important corridor connecting Downtown JC to Liberty State Park and the Bergen-Lafayette neighborhood.  The intital group consisted of Stephanie Daniels of the Historic Paulus Hook Association, Tony Sandkamp of the VVPA, Marc Wesson of Friends of Van Vorst Park, Sam Pesin of Friends of Liberty State Park, Daniel Weiss of Friends of Liberty State Park, David Korn, a local architect and Dave Slurz, a local contractor. 17 associations and groups from across the city sent a letter to our City Council and Mayor Healy asking that they support and expedite the rebuilding of the footbridge by Memorial Day.  Council approved, and so long as the footbridge was in the same location as the original one that was destroyed during Sandy, FEMA would pay 75 percent of the total cost.  Designs were discussed and the quickest solution was a prefabricated steel bridge with 100ft deep pilings and concrete abutments.

So with the persistence and determination of those mentioned above and the cooperation of City Council, Mayor Healy, Rosemary McFadden the Mayor’s Chief of Staff, Jeff Reeves, Asst. City Engineer, Rodney Hadley from Public Works and the hard work of the laborers at the job site we can all enjoy walking, running, or biking over to Liberty State Park and visiting our fellow Ward F neighbors!!  Thanks to all who made this happen!!


We are so excited to share with you that the Liberty State Park footbridge
at Jersey Avenue will be opening tomorrow!!!

The City will be holding a ribbon cutting ceremony on the Jersey Ave side tomorrow, Friday May 24th, at 11am.  All are invited!

A huge thanks to Tony Sandkamp of the VVPA, Marc Wesson of Friends of Van Vorst Park, the City of Jersey City and other community leaders who have been a part of the planning process and helped facilitate this bridge’s reopening in time for summer!!

In a few weeks, there will be a  formal dedication ceremony, as the bridge will be named in honor of the late Ethel Pesin.  It will be called the Ethel Pesin Liberty Bridge.

Have a safe and fun memorial day and remember to vote on June 4th for the Primaries and for the City Council runoff elections on June 11th.

May 2013 VVPA Newsletter

13 May 2013, Posted by admin in Meeting Agendas, News You Can Use
  • Meeting Agenda:

In October representatives from Silverman-Building Neighborhoods presented plans for their newest addition in downtown, the Majestic II on the corner of Grove and Montgomery.  They will join us once again to present a a progress update and new renderings for the project.


This past Tuesday we voted in a new mayor–But as most of you know there will be runoffs for many council seats including Ward F which includes a portion of VVP and the At Large Candidates.
Last meeting we met a few of the Ward F candidates but didn’t have time to “informally” meet many of the At Large candidates.  The calls are out and we will see who will be able to come to our meeting to introduce themselves..SINCE THIS IS LAST MINUTE we will send out an updated list of who will be joining us on Tuesday morning. So please check your emails and let your neighbors know–
(Rolando Lavarro & Joyce Watterman confirmed so far!!)


Steve has been our Ward E Councilman since 2005 and if there was an award for most appearances at a VVPA meeting he would receive it!  Whenever an issue presented itself that our neighbors needed answers, he stopped by and offered his insight and help.  We congratulate Steve on all his hard work that he has done for us and wish him all the best as our new Mayor.  Our door is always open whenever he wants to stop by….


As we say goodbye to Mayor Healy, we would like to thank him for his service to our city and for all his hard work over the past 12 years.  We will never forget him serenading us at quite a few MeetBalls.  We hope he will find time to visit us and we wish him the best of luck in whatever his future holds.


Come celebrate another year of policy and community accomplishments with Bike JC at the 4th annual Jersey City Ward Tour, a sixteen-mile group bike ride through all six wards of Jersey City on June 2nd. The Tour starts and finishes at Exchange Place, leaving at 11 am. Registration is required and is free online at with a suggested donation of $5.
The festival at Tour’s End features great goods including food and beer (White Star Bar); live music (Rock-it Docket); nonprofit showcase; gold sprint races; photo booth and a bike rack design competition. Riders and non-riders alike are invited to Exchange Place from 1-5 pm on June 2nd.
Bike JC is a citizen-based advocacy organization that aims to make Jersey City streets welcoming for bicyclists, by promoting bike-friendly policies, including bike lanes; bicycle education; and traffic law enforcement. Riders must be 10 and up to participate and must wear helmets.
Join Nimbus Dance Works for its annual Jersey City Spring Season at the Barrow Mansion in Downtown Jersey City from May 30th-June 1st.  These intimate performances feature historic dance works, an international collaboration, and popular favorites from the company’s repertory.
Don’t miss this rare opportunity to see Nimbus Dance Works in such an intimate performance! Use this link to purchase tickets!!

Our Farmers Market is up and running in VVP on Saturdays–be sure to check out our vendors and show your support so they keep coming back with the goodies.

Films in Van Vorst is scheduled to start on June 12th…we are still looking for sponsors as one of our main donors was not able to come through for us…
We offer advertising on our web page and our posters along with a generous plug on our film nights.  It’s a great way to give back to the community and for a reasonable price too!! We need help finding donors to keep free films in our park this summer!! Feel free to contact us if you’d like to donate or know of a local business who might be interested —

We are currently working on a new VVPA website courtesy of one of our generous and super talented neighbors–it’s going to be really great…will let you all know when it’s up and running–SO EXCITED!!!

VVPA Updates and Debates

01 May 2013, Posted by admin in News You Can Use

UPDATE:Bright Street Redevelopment Plan

Last week, the City Council tabled their vote on the amendments to the Bright Street Redevelopment Plan.  Thanks to all who came and got involved.  The Board and concerned neighbors are now arranging a meeting with City Planning to discuss the issues that we had with the project. We will keep you posted on the progress.


This Thursday, May 2nd – Last debate sponsored by the Downtown
Coalition of Neighborhood Associations and CivicJC of all certified mayoral candidates.
Starts at 7pm at School 4 -107 Bright St in DT. Journalist panel will consist of Derricke Dennis from CBS2 News, Terrence McDonald from Jersey Journal and E. Assata Wright from Jersey City Reporter.


We are looking to revamp our website and as creative and capable as our Board members are–we’d love to see if there is a professional in our neighborhood that might be able to spare some time and energy and help out our non-profit!  Email us at if you are interested!  Thanks!!

Our next scheduled meeting of the VVPA is Tuesday May 21st 7:30pm Barrow Mansion–agenda coming soon–Be well!

Updates and Debates!

01 May 2013, Posted by admin in News You Can Use

Thanks to all the candidates who joined us last night for our informal meet and greet.   We talked, we laughed, we learned, we ate and we drank!! Thanks to Ward E candidates Fletcher Gensamer, Dan Levin, Candice Osbourne, At-large Candidate Rolando Lavarro,  Ward F candidates Diane Coleman &  Chantel Snow and Mayoral candidate Steve Fulop for a great night.

If you were unable to make it to our meeting…. join the DCNA tomorrow night Thursday April 18th for a council debate right here in our Van Vorst Neighborhood.  There’s also a mayoral debate on May 2nd as well…so get out, learn about our candidates, be informed and then VOTE!!!


Ø  WARD E DEBATE – April 18, 2013 7:00pm MS4 107 Bright Street

Ø  WARD F DEBATE – April 18, 2013 8:00pm MS4 107 Bright Street

Ø  MAYORAL DEBATE – May 2, 2013 7:00pm MS4 107 Bright Street

April 12, 2013 (Jersey City, NJ) Non-profit community organization
CivicJC and the Downtown Coalition of Neighborhood Associations (DCNA)
will present three debates ahead of the May 14 Jersey City elections.
All candidates for Mayor and Council in Wards E and F have accepted
invitations to debate.   Questions will focus on issues concerning
downtown Jersey City residents as well as citywide issues.  All
residents are welcomed to attend.

Ward E and F Council debates will be moderated by Dr. Jonathan
Wharton, a Political Science professor at Stevens Institute of
Technology in Hoboken, NJ.  He is also president of the DCNA and
Historic Paulus Hook Association.

Mayoral debate will be moderated by a panel of reporters from local
news organizations asking questions along with members of the

About the organizations: CivicJC is a non-partisan community-based
initiative designed to promote a comprehensive and positive vision for
the future of Jersey City as a world class city. CivicJC provides
information and policy initiatives designed to make Jersey City an
exceptional place to live, work and visit. CivicJC concentrates on
efforts that will improve the transparency of decision-making of
Jersey City government.  The Downtown Coalition of Neighborhood
Associations (DCNA) is a non-partisan collection of neighborhood
associations united to work on common goals and issues affecting the
downtown Jersey City area, The DCNA includes the Harsimus Cove
Association, Hamilton Park Neighborhood Association, Van Vorst Park
Association and Historic Paulus Hook Association.

Just a quick FYI

It was brought to our attention the day of the Planning Board meeting last week that amendments are being proposed to the Bright Street Redevelopment Plan within the Van Vorst Park District.

The lots in question sit between Barrow & Grove in what used to be the old school parking lot and most recently had trailers on it that were being used by PS#3. The proposed building will be mixed use with 41 units (condos) above the first floor office space. A formal presentation has not been given, so the project specifics aren’t fully known. Some of the changes to the original plan are:

Adding mixed-use Professional Offices (including medical) on the ground floor to lots over 10,000 sf. 5 foot rear yard setback (usually 30 ft) steps back 20′ at 2nd floor 5 stories / 60′ building coverage 90% ( usually  75%) lot coverage 90% (usually 80%) Density 180 units per acre ( usually 110 units per acre) No parking provisions

There has been no other building like this in our historic Van Vorst Park Neighborhood.  The Van Vorst Park Association was not notified in time before the Planning Board meeting to adequately review the plans or changes and voice our opinion before it was voted on.  Board members are concerned with lack of parking in an already highly congested parking area, full lot coverage allowing no land for rain/water absorption/run off, no specific type of professional office space to be used, no rear yard setback (could be an issue for York Street neighbors).

An amendment  will be introduced at today’s city council meeting, April 10th, and is scheduled to be voted on Wednesday April 24th.  At the city council meeting on the 24th there will be an opportunity for public comment.  A site plan application is not scheduled to be filed until May at the very earliest.  Historic Commission and Planning Board hearings for the site plan are not yet scheduled.  The Redevelopment Agency and the designated developer have agreed to attend a VVPA meeting prior to any further board hearings. Architectural rendering of the redevelopment  is below.

We felt it was our responsibility to inform our neighbors of this newest development. If you have any thoughts or concerns feel free to email them to  And as always you are free to come to the city council meetings and speak on your own behalf.

Next VVPA meeting is next Tuesday April 16th–we are in the process of lining up Ward E & F and mayoral candidates for an informal meet and greet.  Stayed tuned–newsletter will be out this weekend with all the information.


Bright Street Redevelopment Update

22 Apr 2013, Posted by admin in News You Can Use

Bright Street Redevelopment Plan

We received numerous emails and calls regarding our last memo on the Redevelopment plan so members of the VVPA Board attended the City council meeting on April 10th to hear the first reading of the ordinance regarding the amendments to the Bright Street Redevelopment Plan.  Steve Fulop, our Ward E council representative, asked after seeing us in attendance, that we write to members of the council before their next council meeting about our concerns with the plan.  We are including a letter we drafted and sent below. Please take a moment and read the letter as it outlines the critically important changes to our Historic Van Vorst Park District that are proposed in the amendments to the Redevelopment plan.

If you are concerned or interested and want to have your voice heard, you are welcome to speak at the meeting this Wednesday April 24th 6pm at Council Chambers, City Hall. To do so, you must submit your name to the office of the city clerk to be included on the list.  The city clerk’s phone number is 201.547.5150.

If you have any further questions or concerns email us before Wednesday at