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Union County Brings Back “Skating With Santa” Event for Residents With Disabilities & Special Needs

The Union County Board of Commissioners, along with the Department of Human Services and the Office for Persons with Disabilities and Special Needs invites residents and their families to skate with Santa Claus on Saturday, December 9th at the Warinanco Sports Center.

“The laughter and joy of our children on the ice exemplify the true meaning of togetherness during this special time of year,” said Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados. “We can’t wait to share in the magic of this heartwarming occasion, as we create lasting memories and spread the holiday cheer. Our dedicated Elizabeth Public Schools, Elizabeth Fire Department and Elizabeth Police Department are volunteering their time to make this event possible for all Union County residents, exemplifying the spirit of our community.”

Skating with Santa will run from 2:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. on Saturday, December 9th at the Warinanco Sport Center, at 1 Park Drive in Roselle. Skaters will be able to enjoy small craft activities and light refreshments as they take a spin around the rink. Children under 12 will also receive a holiday present, donated from the Moving New Jersey Forward Foundation, a Union County-based organization. This event is free to attend, but registration is required by visiting

The Moving New Jersey Forward Foundation is a community-based non-profit founded by Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados, now lead by President Fernanda Correia. Their mission is to raise awareness and strengthen educational efforts about social justice issues, not only within the local community but also on a national scale. The organization’s commitment to promoting equity and justice is evident through its initiatives and collaborations within the Union County community.

For more information about activities and support services offered through the Office for Persons with Disabilities and Special Needs, please call the office at 908-527-4807 or 908-527-4781.

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Union County presents Free Festive Drive-Up Movie Night on December 9th

The Union County Board of County Commissioners, in collaboration with the Department of Parks and Recreation, invites all county residents to a fun-filled, free drive-up movie night on Saturday, December 9th, at the parking lot of Union County Vocational-Technical High School.

“This drive-up movie night is our way of bringing the community together for a safe and joyful celebration,” said Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados. “Holidays are meant to be celebrated by all and this free event is a chance for everyone to participate. So I encourage our residents to invite their friends and neighbors and join us in the spirit of community at this special event. See you all there!”

The event promises a magical experience for families and friends, with the screening of the holiday classic “Elf,” which is celebrating its 20th year. It will take place in the parking lot of Union County Vocational-Technical High School, located at 1776 Raritan Road in Scotch Plains. The lot will open its gates at 5:30 p.m., allowing moviegoers to secure their prime spots before the festivities kick off. The movie will start promptly at 6:30 p.m.

In addition to the movie, as part of the festivities, attendees will have the chance to step into a winter wonderland with an enjoyable photo opportunity inside a life-sized snow globe, where they can capture the evening against the backdrop of a festive winter scene. Each attendee will receive a ticket for a free cookie and beverage to enjoy during the movie.

While this event is free, residents should pre-register for the drive-up movie which is now open. Pre-registration on is necessary for this event.  A rain date has been scheduled for Sunday, December 10th.

For more information about the events and activities run by the Department of Parks and Recreation, please visit

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Union County Announces Partnership with NJ Reentry Corporation to offer Veterans & Returning Citizens with Commercial Driver Licenses Training

The Union County Board of County Commissioners is proud to announce a partnership with the New Jersey Reentry Corporation (NJRC), aimed at providing Commercial Driver Licenses (CDL) training through the CDL Driving Academy in Linden. This collaboration represents a significant step forward in the County’s commitment to supporting veterans and returning citizens in their journey towards sustainable employment and self-sufficiency.

“The County of Union is happy to expand its collaboration with the NJRC, which is a testament to our dedication to positive change and creating success pathways for those who have served our nation and those returning to our community after incarceration,” said Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados. “We recognize the power of education and vocational training in breaking the cycle of unemployment and providing a second chance to those who have faced adversity. In fact, this new initiative falls partly in line with my “Second Chance” initiative, within my 2023 Chairman’s theme of “Building a Stronger Union County.”  This new initiative will not only open doors to stable and well-paying employment opportunities, but it will equip individuals with a valuable skill set and provide access to a thriving industry that is integral to our nation’s infrastructure.”

The New Jersey Reentry Corporation, in collaboration with the Union County American Job Center, has previously worked together to assist reentry residents. This partnership has played a role in facilitating vocational training for “second-chance citizens” through the federal grant funding provided by the Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act. Beyond training, the collaboration offers a range of additional services aimed at fostering self-sufficiency and empowering individuals to become productive members of society.

This pilot project is slated for one year and the CDL Driving Academy will deliver comprehensive CDL Class A and B Driving courses to eligible NJRC reentry customers, equipping them with the skills necessary for success in the transportation industry.

Key features of the partnership include:

  • Vocational Training Opportunities: Veterans and returning citizens enrolled in the program will receive top-notch CDL training from experienced instructors at the CDL Driving Academy.
  • Financial Support for Road Tests: The collaboration includes assistance with road test fees, ensuring that participants face minimal financial barriers as they embark on their journey to attain a CDL.
  • Sustainable Employment: By providing access to CDL training, the partnership aims to empower reentry customers to secure sustainable employment opportunities, contributing to their long-term success and self-sufficiency.

“As we embark on this transformative journey, our new CDL Training Program becomes a beacon of opportunity; illuminating the path for veterans and those returning home to accelerate towards a fresh start,” said Karlicia Thomas, Union County Facility Director of the New Jersey Reentry Corporation. “The road ahead is paved with possibilities and the promise of a new beginning.”

For more information about Union County’s American Job Center, please visit

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COVID Vaccinations Now Available for All Union County Residents

The Union County Board of County Commissioners and the Union County Department of Public Safety proudly announce that a new 2023-2024 Moderna COVID Vaccine is now available, in limited supply, to all Union County Residents.

“In continuing to provide our residents with the latest COVID vaccine, we can effectively slow down the spread of this virus, potentially lowering the risks of serious health complications to all of our constituents, especially those most vulnerable within our community,” said Union County Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados. “I encourage all residents – specifically those uninsured, under-insured or homebound – to take advantage of our vaccination program and register.”

The Union County Office of Health Management began serving the homebound population on Wednesday, November 29th and will continue to do so every Wednesday, while supplies last.

The mobile vaccination program will also be available to all Union County Residents. The first scheduled mobile vaccination clinic will be this Saturday, December 2nd   from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. at Plainfield High School, located at 950 Park Avenue in Plainfield.

Mobile vaccination appointments are being coordinated periodically and vaccination clinic location and dates will vary.  Please call 908-654-9868 or visit to schedule an appointment, get the latest mobile clinic information, or any related questions. Due to limited supply, appointments are strongly encouraged, but not mandatory.

The 2023-2024 Moderna COVID vaccine is available to Union County Residents only, and proof of address will be required. To register for the 2023-2024 Moderna COVID Vaccine, please call 908-654-9868 or schedule an appointment online at

For the latest updates on COVID Vaccines, Flu shots, or other public health-related information, please call 908-654-9868 or visit the Union County Office of Health Management website at

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Union County Announces Commemoration of World AIDS Day – Remember and Commit: 35 Years of Progress

In commemoration of the 35th anniversary of World AIDS Day, The Union County Board of County Commissioners, alongside RWJ Barnabas Health are proud to present “World AIDS Day – Remember and Commit,” an event dedicated to advocating for progress in the fight against HIV/AIDS on December 1st at the Warinanco Sports Center.

“We believe that by coming together as a community, we can make a significant impact in the fight against HIV/AIDS,” said Union County Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados. “World AIDS Day is an opportunity for us to reflect on the progress made, honor those we have lost, and renew our commitment to a future where HIV/AIDS is no longer a threat. Join us on December 1st as we unite in solidarity, remember the journey, and commit to creating a world free from the impact of HIV/AIDS.”

The event will run from 12:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. on December 1st. Keynote speaker Yolanda Frazier, a prominent advocate and expert in the field, will share her insights and experiences. Yolanda serves as Project Manager at the Family Treatment Center, which provides specialized care and treatment for individuals and families infected and affected by HIV or AIDS. She is also the co-founder of the Kiss & Tell Innovative Initiative to encourage conversations about HIV testing, STI screening, risk factors, and PrEP education.

Participants are encouraged to pre-register for the event, although registration is not mandatory. As part of our commitment to community health, the event will also include:

  • HIV/Hepatitis C Testing: Confidential and accessible testing services will be available onsite.
  • Education and Counseling for PReP: Dedicated professionals will be on hand to provide education and counseling regarding Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PReP) and treatment options.
  • Flu Shots: The Union County Office of Health Management will offer flu shots.

For more information or to pre-register, visit To learn more about the services offered by the Union County Office of Health Management, visit

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Union County Announces Season of Giving: A Holiday Drive to Brighten the Holidays for Families in Need

The Union County Board of County Commissioners would like to announce “Season of Giving: A Holiday Drive” collecting new toys and coats to spread joy and happiness throughout the community this holiday season for those Union County neighbors in need.

This heartwarming initiative aims to collect new toys and coats for boys and girls ranging in age from newborn to 16 years old. The collected toys and coats will be distributed to Union County families who have already been identified, who are facing challenging circumstances during this festive time of year.

“Season of Giving: A Holiday Drive invites everyone in the community to participate and contribute to making the holiday season special for children of all ages,” said Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados. “Every child deserves to experience the joy of the holiday season, and we invite our residents and businesses to join us in making that possible. Your generous donations will bring smiles to the faces of countless children and their families.”

To make participation in the toy and coat drive as convenient as possible, drop-off bins will be located at various locations throughout Union County, ensuring that individuals and organizations have easy access to donate. The drop-off locations include:

  • Union County Administration Building, 10 Elizabethtown Plaza, Elizabeth
  • Union County Social Services, 342 Westminster Avenue, Elizabeth
  • Union County Public Safety Building, 300 North Avenue East, Westfield
  • Union County Engineering Building, 2325 South Avenue, Scotch Plains

For suggestions on toys, individuals can visit and select a toy from our Wish List and deliver it to any of the bins or send to the shipping address. If you would like to get items shipped from anywhere else, please send to:

The County of Union
Attn: Samantha Perez
6th Floor 10 Elizabethtown Plaza
Elizabeth, NJ 07207

The drive will run from November 27, 2023 to December 18th allowing ample time for people to drop off their new, unwrapped toys and coats.

For more information about the Season of Giving: A Holiday Drive or to donate toys that are not on the list, please visit or contact Samantha Perez-Gora at 908-527-4182.

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Union County Kicks Off UC Loves Small Biz Campaign on November 24th

To view our promo video on the UC LOVES SMALL BIZ Campaign, please click here.

The Union County Board of County Commissioners are proud to announce for the first time ever, the “UC Loves Small Biz” campaign, as part of a newly created Union County Small Business Month initiative, under Union County Chairman Sergio Granados’ “Building a Stronger Union County” Chairman’s theme for 2023. In an effort to boost our small businesses and community spirit, join in on supporting and exploring the diverse range of businesses in Union County – whether a resident or visitor. From November 24th through December 24th, Union County will be encouraging residents to “shop, dine and support local,” emphasizing the significant role small businesses play in our local communities.

“This campaign is more than just a call to action. It’s a celebration of what makes Union County unique,” said Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados, who is also liaison to the Workforce Development Board. “Union County has over half a million residents and a network of 14,000 businesses. Supporting our local businesses this holiday season, during Union County Small Business Month, goes beyond boosting the local economy. It offers an opportunity to experience the unique character and diversity of our community, fostering a connection that can inspire year-round support for these businesses. We encourage you to join us in embracing UC Loves Small Biz and making a positive impact on the growth and prosperity of Union County.”

The UC Loves Small Biz website will connect people to local businesses by providing links to downtown districts and chambers of commerce, as well as local websites with the ability to search and browse for a business by category. These functions will offer a streamlined and efficient way to discover the unique products and services that Union County businesses have to offer. A dedicated section of the site will showcase local events and promotions, serving as a digital bulletin board where businesses can share exciting activities, discounts, and happenings.

From Friday, November 24th through Sunday, December 24th, the Union County social media platforms will be highlighting local businesses, sharing pictures, posting videos, and advertising special events and promotions. Residents, visitors and businesses are invited to post their photos with the hashtag #UCLOVESSMALLBIZ to share their experiences with others. By supporting small businesses, individuals ensure that these enterprises flourish, making the community even more vibrant for Union County residents.

To learn more about the UC Loves Small Biz campaign, please visit To contact the Union County Office of Business Development, call 908-527-7412, or email Jeffrey Brooks at

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Ring in the Holiday Season With Santa Claus at Warinanco Park on December 3rd

The Union County Board of County Commissioners, along with the Union County Department of Parks and Recreation, is delighted to announce the start of our festive holiday season with a visit from Santa Claus at Warinanco Park on Sunday, December 3rd.

“The true magic of the holiday season is found in the company we keep,” said Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados. “As the warmth of the season surrounds us, our community comes alive with the joy of shared moments. Join us on December 3rd to make this holiday season a time of joy, laughter, and togetherness for all. Let’s create memories that brighten our spirits and strengthen the bonds that make our community special”

The event will take place at the Warinanco Sports Center from 11:00a.m. to 6:00p.m on Sunday, December 3rd. Enjoy ice skating, holiday carols and refreshments, and, of course, a visit from Santa Claus and his elves. Tickets are $8.00 each, and include 2-hour entry, skate rentals, hot chocolate and a cookie. Tickets must be purchased in advance online at

All individuals entering the venue, whether skating or not, require a ticket, which must be pre-purchased online. Tickets will not be sold at the door. Due to space limitations, each 2-hour session is restricted to 250 people. Children under 2 years old can attend for free.

The Warinanco Sports Center is located in Warinanco Park, off St. Georges Avenue. For more information about this event, please visit or call 908-298-7850. To learn more about the Union County Department of Parks and Recreation and the activities they offer, please visit

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Union County to Hold Emergency Holiday Food Distributions on November 18th & December 17th

A drive-thru event in Union to provide residents with food for the Holidays

The Union County Board of County Commissioners are announcing two emergency food distribution events that will take place on Saturday, November 18, and Sunday, December 17, beginning at 8:00 a.m. at the campus of Kean University, located at 1000 Morris Avenue in Union Township.

“With the holiday season fast approaching, the Commissioner Board and the County of Union are hosting these food distribution events, offering crucial support to residents facing financial challenges,” said Commissioner Chairman Sergio Granados, who also serves as Liaison to the Human Services Advisory Board. “Our goal is to alleviate the burden of meal expenses, ensuring that hunger does not affect the holiday experience for any of our Union County residents and their families. We extend our heartfelt appreciation to the dedicated volunteers and staff, who have tirelessly served our community for over three years, and have continued to do so throughout various community focused programs that include a focus on our commitment to eliminating holiday hunger.”

This event operates on a first-come, first-served basis, and will take place rain or shine. Participants must have proof of NJ residency with them. The first 2,000 residents will receive a special holiday food box with produce and trimmings.

Participants are reminded to clear a space in their trunk or cargo area. Event staff will load the food into their vehicle. Boxes may include perishable items, so please make sure all fresh produce and items with a limited shelf life are refrigerated.

For more information about the Community Food Bank of New Jersey, or to find other food distribution locations, please visit or text FINDFOOD to 908-224-7776.

For updates on all Union County COVID-19 services, please visit General information about COVID-19 is available through the New Jersey Department of Health at

The County of Union would like to thank Village Super Market and Gargiulo Produce, who have been continued partners over the last three years. To learn more about Village Super Market, visit: To learn more about Gargiulo Produce, visit:

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2023 Diwali Celebration