2023 – Christmas in Hackensack
………………………………………(ignore April 30, 2017 publish date – this was published on December 18, 2023)
On Thanksgiving, I posted about a long, productive photowalk I took on November 15. At the stroll’s midpoint, I happened to stumble across 4 trucks whose elevated workers were busy in the trees of the small park known as The Green – across from the Bergen County Courthouse (on the right and not visible):
NOTE: about half of these images – including the above one – are panoramic shots, so click ‘em all to see which ones enlarge.
I had seen this upper arboreal activity before, so I knew they were stringing lights for Christmas:
(Smart of the worker to wear a mask for protection from Tree Covid.)
This was the invitation for the Tree Lighting ceremony on December 4:
I knew the Christmas tree wouldn’t be lit up beforehand, but I wondered if the other trees were – maybe as a tease to get people interested in showing up on the 4th – so I drove down to The Green on December 2:
As expected, the park was fairly dark………….except for the northeast corner, which – for some reason – had one tree lit up:
But I noticed some holiday-type light coming from Court Plaza, across from the Courthouse on Main St. The entrance:
HUGE ornaments (I’m trying not to say “BIG BALLS”):
A different angle with the Courthouse behind them:
Stepping back lets me include their lit tree and the big gift package that the ornaments are sitting on (maybe the gift package contains all the lights for The Green’s tree?):
This might be my most Christmasy shot of the season (but I won’t know that for 2 more days).
Well, that was unexpectedly festive!
December 4: On to The Green!
5:30pm: The tree’s not lit yet and no one seems to know exactly when that will occur between now and 8pm.
The first thing I notice is a wagon with all kinds of sparkly stuff in it being pulled along a sidewalk. I HAD to get a shot of that, but a short video would have been better, considering all the sparkling that was going on:
What’s more festive than Santa’s sleigh? The old Hackensack trolley that was parked on Court St, across from the Bergen County Courthouse:
On the Main St side:
(I should have taken this AFTER the tree was lit)
Hey – it’s that glitter wagon again! What’s more festive than that next to Bad Ass Coffee?
Right in the middle of the park was a dead Santa, awaiting burial. Oh well – there are lots more around to replace him:
(Would somebody please close his eyes? It’s creepy!)
I didn’t hear the introduction, but I think it’s a safe bet that this is the Hackensack High School Choir:
I was up front, but could hardly hear them. My guess is that 3 microphones doesn’t cut it for all those singers.
And the Hackensack High School Ginger People had NO mics!
But that’s OK (ever try to sing while smiling with your mouth closed?)
After the Ginger People’s stirring rendition of “The Sounds Of Silence”, I found an interesting table where kids could pick out holiday sayings and have them stamped onto a wearable button:
Finally, at 6:30pm the tree(s) were lit:
That last one was taken from the top step of the Bergen County Courthouse.
Two more trolley PANOs – this time with lit trees behind it:
Back to the stage for the headliner – Santa and the kids (as the next Mom and child awaited their turn in the far corner):
BTW, the Ginger Kids were not allowed to sit on Santa’s lap………..too many crumbs (plus, it was dangerous – Santa hadn’t eaten dinner yet).
Actually, no one sat on Santa’s lap. All the little kids (and one big one) stood next to him, talked and waved to the camera:
A very wide PANO of the whole scene:
Elmo tries to make friends with a cute dog, whose owner seems to have her doubts. The pooch isn’t interested. Maybe he’s allergic to Sesame:
Elmo has better luck with a less-discerning human:
Hey – who’s that guy taking a picture? If I’m in it, I want a copy of me and Elmo! (I can erase the middleman)
A few more lights and trees:
A lit tree with a lit Courthouse:
Heavy-duty protection for the event (hey – we don’t mess around……………as long as the problem comes from the east – otherwise, we’re screwed):
The last two far-and-near shots of the Christmas tree:
I think this is may be the “dead” Santa we saw earlier. Maybe I should go before he recognizes the guy who wanted to bury him.
A frozen smurf un-greets me as I leave:
But we’re not done yet. I wanted to see what this looked like without the crowds and festivities, so I went back on December 16.
It looked like this:
Looks pretty good to me………..
Walking across Court St gave me this view from the Main St side of the Bergen County Courthouse:
I have to say that I found this close pairing to be quite unique:
I looked online and could find only one picture in Google Images – from a dual-religion married couple – that showed both the crèche and the menorah right next to each other in the same image (two others were separated):
So congratulations, Bergen County………….except for the fact that one of the “candles” is unlit and it’s December 16 (the last night of Hanukkah was December 15).
I think it’s time to go home.
After I parked my car, I noticed this in the front view of the apartment building next door to where I park – 3 floors of Christmas:
I went to another nearby apartment building to see what they had……….nothing. But as soon as I turned around, I saw this at the church that’s next to my building (which is on the far right):
Before I could get to my building, I visited yet another church that’s right across the street and that’s where I took my final Christmas in Hackensack photo:
At this point, I’m kinda Christmased-out (and there’s still a week to go!), so let me wish you all a very MERRY CHRISTMAS FROM HACKENSACK and an extremely Happy New Year!