Montclair’s Top Stories Of 2020: Coronavirus, Protests, Election

Eric Kiefer

MONTCLAIR, NJ — Take a look back on a year nobody in Montclair will forget. Catch up with some our top news stories of 2020.

CORONAVIRUS

DeCamp Bus Suspension Continues In NJ Amid Coronavirus

DeCamp says the feasibility of opening offices in NYC will determine when – and if – the company will restart service in New Jersey.

Authorities Shut Down Cuban Pete's Restaurant In Montclair

A Montclair restaurant owner accused of repeatedly defying the state's coronavirus orders has been locked out of his business, reports say.

Montclair Soup Kitchen Is Beacon Of Hope In Shadow Of Coronavirus

Residents and businesses are using Toni's Kitchen as a rallying point to aid their neighbors during the COVID-19 crisis.

11 At Montclair State Accused Of Breaking COVID Rules, Partying

MSU suspended housing privileges for 11 students after they were caught partying without masks or social distancing, officials said.

Possible COVID Exposure At Montclair Graduation Parties: Official

Superintendent: Montclair High School is postponing its in-person graduation ceremony after "possible COVID-19 exposure" at local parties.

79 Small Biz Grants In Montclair Will Help With COVID Losses

"Our small businesses are the lifeblood of our communities and our local economy," Deputy Mayor William Hurlock said.

People Are Leaving Coronavirus Garbage All Over Essex County

Towns including Bloomfield, Montclair and Cedar Grove say people aren't throwing away face masks, gloves and other COVID-19 trash properly.

Montclair Film Festival Adapts To COVID: Drive-In, Virtual Shows

Organizers are relaunching the beloved Montclair festival, which will include a throwback to another era: drive-in movies.

Montclair Woman's 'Wall Of Gratitude' Keeps Growing

When Jennifer Hager wants to show she cares, that's when the paint brushes come out. See her tribute to frontline workers.

Disabled People 'Forgotten' In Coronavirus, Montclair Woman Says

Want to know what it feels like to be forgotten? Try to buy groceries during a pandemic when you suffer from lupus, a Montclair woman says.

Courage Trumps Coronavirus At Montclair Food Pantry

In a sign of the times, the Human Needs Food Pantry in Montclair is now distributing face masks. See other ways the nonprofit is adapting.

Montclair Theater Nonprofit Reinvents Itself Amid Coronavirus

"We want to be there to help bring communities together once the worst has passed," the Vanguard Theater Company says.

Montclair Man Beats Coronavirus, Donates Plasma To Honor Fallen

Ed Durkin, an ex-Caldwell councilman who lives in Montclair, donated blood that may help COVID-19 patients as a tribute to 2 local victims.

Montclair Residents Forge Neighborly Bonds Amid Coronavirus

"A list of names is greater security than toilet paper," a Montclair resident said.

Long-Awaited Skate Park Opens In Montclair Amid Pandemic

Montclair's young skateboarding fans have been trying to get a skate park built in the township for more than a decade.


GOVERNMENT AND POLITICS

Montclair Election Results: Spiller Is Mayor, See Council Winners

Montclair voted for mayor and town council in a "mail-in only" election due to the coronavirus. See the final, certified results here.

Montclair Mayor Sean Spiller Sworn In

Gov. Phil Murphy said Montclair is one of his "favorite communities in the whole, wide world" during the swearing-in of Mayor Sean Spiller.

Battle Over Rent Control In Montclair Continues

In the words of a famous, late Montclairite: "It 'aint over till it's over."

Cheers, Dancing In Montclair; Biden Projected As Election Winner

There was dancing in the streets of Montclair, and it was set to the music of a projected Election Day win for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris.

2 Pot Dispensaries In Montclair? Bob Marley's Son Wants Permit

"It's joyful to see a new day of positive change," said Rohan Marley, son of the legendary musician and marijuana activist.

Montclair May Expand Busing To HS After Years Of Complaints

It takes some Montclair teens more than an hour to walk to the high school, but they don't qualify for free busing. That could change soon.

Plan To Build Hike, Bike Path Through 8 NJ Towns Picks Up Steam

PHOTOS: A proposed "greenway" would cross through Montclair, Glen Ridge, Bloomfield, Belleville, Newark, Kearny, Secaucus and Jersey City.

Montclair Planning Board Approves 'Safe Streets' Plan

After years of debate, a plan to encourage safe driving, bicycling and walking in Montclair is moving forward.


GOOD NEWS

Montclair Teen 'Too Small For Football' Rushes For 1,200 Yards

When a Montclair High School student was told he was "too small" to play the sport he loved, he used it as fuel to chase his gridiron dreams.

Montclair Residents, Groups Earn Awards For Safeguarding History

The Montclair Township Historic Preservation Commission announced the 2020 recipients of its Historic Preservation Awards program.

Montclair Girl Scouts Will Appear On Cookie Boxes Nationwide

A pair of Montclair residents and Girl Scout boosters will appear on cookie boxes. One will be on Lemon-Ups, the other on Thin Mints.

Goat Rescued In Montclair; New Kid On The Block Goes Home

A pet pygmy goat is back with her grateful family. It's a good news story in a "time of isolation," they said.


ACROSS ESSEX COUNTY

Catch up with some of the other top news of 2020 in Montclair and Essex County below.

Send local news tips and correction requests to eric.kiefer@patch.com

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This article originally appeared on the Montclair Patch