Bergen Square Day returns, celebrating history, culture and more
It will be a celebration of Jersey City’s diverse culture and history with the second annual Bergen Square Day on Saturday, October 23, from noon to 5 p.m. in Bergen Square, at the intersection of Bergen Square and Academy Street.
The event will also include the annual Bergen Apple Fest. This party is centered around the Apple Tree House, which will become the future headquarters of the Museum of Jersey City History.
The festival celebrating history, culture and fall will feature live bands, a DJ, spoken word, dancing, pumpkin painting, apple treats for sale, tours of historic sites local food vendors and merchants and community organizations.
Acts featured for this year’s festival include the staging of “Walk by the Way of the Moon” by the Speranza Theater Company, The Spirit of Life Ensemble, Rescue Poetix and The Jersey City Dance Academy. Hudson County Community College kicks off the day at 11 am with poet David Mills and “New York and New Jersey Slavery and the Colonial Settlers” at Apple Tree House. DJ Khadi will also be playing Afro Beats all afternoon.
Before being a site for European settlers, Bergen Square was once home to the indigenous Lenni Lenape people. Today, it still remains a hub for immigrants from all over the world. Bergen Square Day is hosted by local historian Dr James Dievler, who is also a board member of the Journal Square Community Association and also sits on the executive committee of the museum’s new board of trustees.
“I believe this event will renew and restore Bergen Square on the map and in the public consciousness as an important historical and cultural destination,” said Dievler. “The event will celebrate and showcase our local talent and our extraordinarily diverse community. We are particularly delighted this year to locate part of the event at the Apple Tree House, the future home of the Museum of Jersey City History. “
As part of the event, Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop will speak at 2:45 p.m. from the music stage at the southwest corner of Bergen Square.
Bergen Square Day first took place in May 2019. The 2020 event, which marked the 360th anniversary of Bergen’s founding, has been canceled due to the pandemic. This year’s event is themed “Bergen Square 360+” in recognition of the anniversary which has just ended. The event will be rain or shine and will be presented by the Journal Square Community Association, the Bergen Square Historical Society, the Journal Square Restoration Corporation, and the Jersey City Office of Cultural Affairs.