The city of Hoboken has undergone quite the evolution over the years, actually starting out as a resort for Manhattanites before being developed into a factory town and gradually morphing into the city that it is today. For the last three decades, the Hoboken Historical Museum has been documenting the evolution, something they are looking forward to celebrating in a big way.
In commemoration of their 30th anniversary, the museum is reaching “deep into its collections archive” to decorate the Hoboken Elks Lodge in a 19th-century style for their upcoming spring fundraising gala on Saturday, May 14th. Tickets for the festivities are $150 and will go towards the museum’s goal of raising about $100,000 in funds from the event to help expand their Collections & Archives space.
The party is being dubbed the “Elysian Fields Escapade,” taking its name from the nearby field where the first modern-day baseball game was played back in 1846. The gala will recreate several iconic sights from Hoboken’s resort days, including the colonnade from Elysian Fields and Sybil’s Cave, along with reproductions from archival illustrations of Hoboken’s River Walk.
The gala, being held at 1005 Washington Street, will include a buffet-style dinner catered by Anthony Pino, owner of Hoboken mainstays Anthony David’s, Bin 14 wine bar and the soon-to-open Porter Collins. There will also be a traditional punch served in homage to the Turtle Club, which was founded by Col. John Stevens in the late 1700s and was well-known for hosting regional gourmand picnics with turtle soup and spiked punch.
Museum Communications coordinator Melissa Abernathy says that the gala will also have a few notable characters from the 1800s mixing it up with guests, including baseball players in vintage uniforms representing Alexander Cartwright’s Knickerbocker team and P.T. Barnum, who once organized a much-publicized “Wild Buffalo Hunt” in Hoboken back in 1843. An eclectic live auction will also be held featuring everything from a summer pass to the Shipyard pool to a whiskey-tasting for 10 to grandstand seats at this year’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
Festivities like this aren’t anything new to the museum. Last year, they spearheaded the 100th birthday celebration of Frank Sinatra, who grew up in the city and first rose to fame singing with the Hoboken Four. An exhibition on Sinatra entitled “The Man, The Voice and The Fans” currently occupies the museum’s main gallery through July.
Next month, the facility will be hosting their Spring Family Fun Day on June 19th from 12 – 4pm. The event is free, open to all and will feature hands-on crafts and games for the whole family. Additionally, the museum also runs several guided tours including the upcoming Secret Garden Tour on June 5th, which features a walk through many of Hoboken’s gardens. For architecture buffs, there’s also the Hoboken House Tour on October 23rd later this year, which showcases some of the great private homes in Hoboken, many of them with historical significance.
In recent years, the museum has also started running two popular festivals. They include the Heirloom Tomato Tasting Festival, a celebration of Jersey-fresh heirloom tomato varieties and the Heirloom Garlic Tasting Festival featuring many Jersey-fresh garlic selections. The events are respectively set for August 21st and October 16th of this year.
The museum is also running several summer camp programs for children and has a “story time” designed for kids ages 2-5 held every Thursday for $2. The museum is located at 1301 Hudson Street in the last standing structure from the former Bethlehem Steel shipyard. General admission to the museum is $4, with children admitted free.