The holiday season has arrived and it is better than ever for downtown Jersey City. For the 2017 holiday season, the Historic Downtown Special Improvement District (HDSID) has organized three events for the month of December.

On Thursday Dec. 7, there will be the annual Tree Lighting and Menorah Lighting Ceremony that will be from 6:45 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Pedestrian Mall on Newark Avenue. Jersey City’s Mayor Steven Fulop and Santa Claus will be attending the lighting ceremony.

At the event, there will also be a caroling performance by McNair Academic’s Chamber Choir and local Jersey City music group, Academic, as well as music played by local guitarist Matty Dee and The Rock-it Docket.

Several local businesses helped HDSID with decorating this year’s tree, which was sponsored by GothamWest, a Jersey City-based firm that specializes in design and construction of residential properties. Some of the businesses that helped with decorating this year included Downtown Yogurt, Roman Nose, Two Boots Jersey City, and Liberty Harbor Marina.

Rachel Sieg, the executive director of HDSID, talked about what she expects from the organization when it plans these holiday events.

“The goal that HDSID has is to unify the Historic Downtown neighborhood through our local businesses to make this holiday season a beautiful one,” said Sieg.

On Dec. 9 and 10, HDSID, along with Midnight Market and Artist & Maker Market, will be hosting the Holiday Market Craft Fair at the Grove Street PATH Station. It will run from 12 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. for both Saturday and Sunday.

There will be tents with tables filled with last minute Christmas gifts for purchase. Items such as artwork, jewelry, and clothes will be sold at budget-friendly prices by different vendors from the Market, which has been in the downtown Jersey City area since 2015.

Delicious food and drinks will be provided by the girls of Midnight Market, another local downtown Jersey City business that deals with foodie nightlife events in the area. There will also be holiday cocktails sold by Left Bank Burger Bar.

The last event that HDSID will hold will be its annual Holiday Market, which will be on Monday Dec. 18, 2017 and Thursday Dec. 21, 2017 at the Grove Street PATH Station from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m..

Despite only three events being held this year in downtown Jersey City, Sieg was enthusiastic about future holiday events in the area.

“Of course there is also the chance for new holiday events in the future. With downtown Jersey City constantly changing, it would be nice to have new events outside the PATH Station on Grove Street and the Pedestrian Mall,” said Sieg.

HDSID is not the only one who is trying to bring the holiday spirit to downtown Jersey City. The Puertorriqueños Asociados for Community Organization (PACO) is hosting two holiday events.

PACO will hold its 3rd Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony on Tuesday Dec. 5 from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. at 2nd Street and Manila Avenue. Hot chocolate will be provided during the event and the Ferris High School choir will be performing traditional Christmas carols.

Unlike HDSID’s events, the PACO’s holiday season lasts until 2018 in downtown. PACO will hold their annual Three Kings celebration on Friday Jan. 5, 2018 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at 3rd Street and Manilla Avenue. There will be food, drinks, music, raffles, and gifts for the kids presented by the Three Wise Men.

Take the time and visit one of Jersey City’s many neighborhoods during this holiday season.

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