Category Archives: Garden State Living

Hip New Jersey spotlights the businesses and communities that are making the Garden State fabulous!

Pokemon Go and a Jeter Wedding: Weekend Recap

Just because the holiday weekend has passed doesn’t mean that #NJ isn’t, well, hip anymore! The #GardenState had nothing short of awesome things happening throughout. See what went down and who stirred things up this weekend in our weekly weekend recap.

Friday, July 8th, 2016

Earlier in the week, Pokemon Go was released on the app store. In the game, virtual Pokemon appear through the player’s smartphone camera and are to be captured and trained by the player. The fever over this new twist in the international franchise made its way to New Jersey this weekend as people of all ages indulged in this new virtual reality.

In probably the most adorable of news, the state revealed to the public that the senate recently passed a bill that requires all pet stores in New Jersey to sell only dogs that originate from animal shelters or rescues. The bill seeks to battle the issue of the abundance of puppy mills throughout the nation. Next, the bill will go to the assembly, where a debate will ensue.

Saturday, July 9th, 2016

Canadian superstar Justin Bieber made his stratospheric comeback with Purpose, his latest album, after a few unfortunate clashes with the media and he’s celebrating it with the Purpose World Tour. The show hit the Prudential Center in Newark on Saturday night. With singles like “Sorry” and “Love Yourself,” it’s hard not to learn to be a #Belieber again. The media loves a bad boy, right?

Saturday marked day two of the The Vampire Diaries Official Convention at the Hilton Parsippany. Fans in attendance had the opportunity to actively engage in the fictitious world of the popular show all weekend. Perhaps the most exciting and highly anticipated part of the convention was a celebrity appearance by Ian Somerhalder, one of the show’s main stars.

Ian Somerhalder!!!!!!!!! #TVDNJ ❤️❤️❤️

A photo posted by Kaelyn Bruschi (@wesleywifey_) on

While it may have been a sad day for the ladies, it was certainly a happy day for Derek Jeter as he tied the knot with girlfriend and model Hannah Davis on Saturday. Jeter, the Pequannock Township-born professional baseball shortstop, and Davis chose the small ceremony route and wed in Napa, California.

Sunday, June 10th, 2016

Old Bridge native and elite gymnast Laurie Hernandez didn’t hesitate to wow the audience and the rest of the young gymnasts watching nationwide at the gymnastics Olympic Trials in San Jose, California. In her first year as a senior gymnast, she was named to the team for the Rio de Janeiro Olympics on Sunday night at 16 years old. She finished well ahead of many of her elders, earning herself gymnastics superstardom.

Young Australian rock band 5 Seconds of Summer proved that they can keep up with the other biggest boy bands in the world on Sunday. Currently in its North American leg and in support of Sounds Good Feels Good, the band’s latest album, the Sounds Live Feels Live World Tour arrived in Holmdel at none other than the PNC Bank Arts Center.

I love playing to you. Thank you for this evening Holmdel, New Jersey, we had 12,000 strong tonight xx

A photo posted by アシュトン A S H T O N (@ashtonirwin) on

#HipNJ Celebrates 7-Eleven Day

By Kenneth Barilari

Today is 7-Eleven Day! July 11th is the official birthday of the 7‑Eleven convenience store chain, which celebrates its 89th birthday this year. In honor of the special day, you can stop in at any participating 7-Eleven between 11am and 7pm to get a free small Slurpee!

Slurpees are the perfect drink to battle the summer heat, leaving you refreshed and satisfied. If you’re feeling especially festive, you can try the new birthday cake flavor, in honor of Slurpee’s 50th anniversary. #HipNJ has compiled a list of fun facts about the icy beverage for you to read while you wait in line for yours!

How was the Slurpee invented?


The Slurpee was invented by a man named Omar Knedlik, who put soda in the freezer to cool it down. It semi-froze, creating the Slurpee we all know and love!


When are they most popular?

During the summer, of course! In fact, almost half are purchased during June, July and August.

How many have been sold!?

jonas7‑Eleven guests sip more than 14 million Slurpee beverages each month. Since introduced in 1966, some 7.2 billion Slurpee drinks have been sold, enough for every person on the planet.


What’s with the straws?

7‑Eleven created a special spoon-straw so “slurpers” wouldn’t miss the last drop of their Slurpee drinks.

Where are the most sold?

mackleThe #1 market in the world for Slurpee drink sales is Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, followed by the greater Detroit, Michigan area.  Michigan is home to eight of the top 10 Slurpee-selling stores in the company.

What are the most popular flavors?

The two most popular Slurpee flavors are Wild Cherry and Coca-Cola.

Can I have a Slurpee machine?


Unfortunately, there is only one person on the planet that owns an authentic Slurpee machine. The rest are in 7-Eleven stores. This might be someone to become friends with.


By now, you’re probably trying to find the nearest 7-Eleven. So, we’ll leave you with a tip for when you get a brain freeze after trying to drink your Slurpee way too fast. When you feel a brain freeze coming on, press your tongue against the roof of the mouth to warm the area. Good luck, and enjoy!


By Nicole Torossian

Is there a better excuse to eat chocolate today besides the fact that we observe #WorldChocolateDay on this day? To celebrate, #HipNJ has put together a list of the best NJ sweet shops to indulge in your all-time guilty pleasure, chocolate.

Conrad’s Confectionary, Westwood

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Valentine’s Day, Easter, Father’s Day, Mother’s Day, Halloween, Christmas, you name it, Conrad’s makes enough homemade chocolates for just about every holiday.  Family owned since 1928, Conrad’s Confectionary, located in downtown Westwood, is a great spot to grab a sweet treat.  If you can’t make it to the store, they even ship nationwide!

Chocolates With Love, Ramsey

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Since 1981, this homemade chocolate and gift store has been providing deliciousness to NJ.  Their chocolate by-the-piece will definitely satisfy your sweet tooth.

Critchley’s Chocolate and Candies, River Edge

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Since 1957, Critchley’s has been providing locals with the nostalgia feeling of old time chocolate eating. Before it was Critchley’s, this unique chocolate shop was a Lutheran Church.  Stop in to experience this homemade goodness!

Max Brenner, Paramus

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Who says a chocolate shop just has to sell chocolate? At Max Brennar, they do things a little bit different.  Grab a sandwhich or salad, sip on a fruity drink, or even try their chocolate pizza! Dessert comes in many different forms at Max Brennar, even in chocolate syringe form.

Chocolate Works, Montclair

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Feeling decorative? Chocolate Works offers guests something that not many have experienced before.  Attend a workshop and make your own chocolate in a mold and then decorate your creation.  If you are just looking for some regular chocolate, Chocolate Works offers everything from chocolate covered pretzels, chocolate coins, truffles, and more!

Adi’s Sweet Shop, Bloomfield

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Upon walking into Adi’s, you can’t help but be captured by the bright colors of chocolate packaging all around the shop.  This place offers gourmet chocolates, truffles and bars for all to enjoy.  Plus, every Tuesday-Sunday 4-6 pm is happy hour! Buy any hot drink and get a free truffle of your choice.

Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, Long Branch

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What’s better than chocolate? Chocolate and the beach! Rocky Mountain in Long Branch is located steps away from the sun and sand.  Stop in for fudge, an Almond Bear, Peanut Butter Bucket, or English toffee, just to name a few.

Country Kettle Fudge, LBI

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Oh, fudge! There is no way you can pass this one up, #HipNJ.  The creamy, sweet, melt-in-your-mouth fudge is to die for with unique flavors like chocolate chip mint, cookie dough, Oreo crunch, M&M, salted caramel, the list goes on!

Enjoy #WorldChocolateDay!