Join a celebration on Saturday, July 16 of Hoboken’s public waterfront 

  • Hoboken Cove Beach

FBW | July 11, 2022

When it was built in 1939, the Maxwell House Coffee Plant was the largest coffee processing plant in the world. For a time, it was Hoboken’s largest employer. Its 182-ft-long “Good to the Last Drop” sign facing the Hudson River, including a neon lit drop, became an iconic landmark until the plant closed in 1992.

In the late 1990s, local developers Daniel Gans and George Vallone acquired the property and by 2000 proposed a sprawling $300 million residential development covering the 14-acre site. The Fund for a Better Waterfront (FBW) negotiated an agreement with the developers to change the original plans so the buildings would be set back from the waterfront, behind a public street, in order to preserve a continuous, public riverfront park. As part of the agreement, the developers donated the five acres of land on the river-side of Sinatra Drive North to the City.

Today, Maxwell Place Park contains the only natural sand beach on the Hudson River south of the George Washington Bridge and thus has become an ideal launching pad for those seeking to get into the river via kayak or stand-up paddleboard. Two nonprofit groups who facilitate free access to the Hudson River make their home there, the Hoboken Cove Community Boathouse and Ke Aloha Outrigger.

On City of Water Day, Saturday, July 16, FBW will join with these groups and others for a day of activities celebrating Hoboken’s public waterfront park and its access to the river, and educating the public on environmental and climate change issues. Biologist Noelle Thurlow of Resilience Adventures will provide a hands-on catch and release experience to learn about wildlife in the Hudson. The NY/NJ Baykeeper will be there to explain their program for reintroducing oysters into the New York Harbor. The Montclair State University Traveling HAB Lab will demonstrate the impact of climate change on our watersheds and water quality.

Want to try your hand at fishing in the Hudson? Come to the Castle Point Park fishing pier, just south of the Union Dry Dock site. The Hudson River Fishermen Association will be there to help, providing rods, reels and bait.

Resilience Adventures is providing a unique opportunity to learn the history of the waterfront via kayak with Bob Foster of the Hoboken Historical Museum leading the tour. (Registration required.) The Hoboken Cove Community Boathouse and Ke Aloha Outrigger will provide more opportunities to kayak and paddleboard as they do on most summer weekends, but due to its popularity, you will likely need to wait in line to enjoy your turn on the river.

If you want to learn more about the creation of Hoboken’s waterfront park over the past three decades and the ongoing efforts to complete it, join a tour led by FBW’s Executive Director, Ron Hine. The tour will walk south from Maxwell Place Park and include updates on Union Dry Dock and the City’s Sinatra Drive Project.

The Waterfront Alliance and the NY/NJ Harbor & Estuary Program sponsor City of Water Day each year with “In Your Neighborhood” events taking place throughout the metropolitan area. Click on the link below to view the full schedule and the times for all of the Hoboken activities.

Org Links

Resilience Adventures
Hoboken Cove Community Boathouse
Ke Aloha Outrigger
Hudson River Fishermen’s Association
NYNJ Baykeeper
Montclair State University – Center for Water Science & Technology

Related Links

3,000-year old outrigger canoe tradition lives on at the Hoboken Cove
Maxwell Place Park/Plan
The good news and the bad concerning Maxwell Place Park
In praise of London plane trees in London . . . and in Hoboken
Editorial: A Once-in-a-century Opportunity
Plan for the Hoboken Waterfont