Hackensack, NJ Community Message Boards

General Category => Hackensack Discussion => Topic started by: BLeafe on November 26, 2020, 10:50:58 AM

Title: "THE SACK"
Post by: BLeafe on November 26, 2020, 10:50:58 AM

"Longtime residents have always known the city as "The Sack."?

I've been connected to Hackensack longer than most and I've never heard that nickname until recently. It's a terrible name. Two things immediately pop into mind when I hear it. "Sad Sack" - an old comic - is one of them and if you look that name up in Wikipedia, you'll see the other one ("sack of sh*t") in the very first paragraph.

What do you all think about the nickname? Let's take a vote.

Title: Re: "THE SACK"
Post by: johnny g on November 27, 2020, 07:53:17 AM
I've heard that nickname before, it didn't really bother me although in the 80's when people would say "Crackensack" I would get annoyed. I've been hearing some radio commercials lately reporting the recent business growth in the downtown area and I believe the website is TheSack.biz
Title: Re: "THE SACK"
Post by: Victor E Sasson on December 05, 2020, 11:00:40 AM

I worked at The Record of Hackensack for nearly 30 years, starting in 1979, and moved here in 2007, and I have NEVER heard the city referred to as "The Sack."

I first saw that ridiculous name on a mural that was painted in a passageway off Main Street, what, a couple of years ago.

Now, The Record, which has been turned into a laughing stock by Gannett, claims "longtime residents have always known the city as 'The Sack'" and attributes that to "several Main Street business owners." The paper claims this inspired the Main Street Business Alliance to officially adopt the nickname and pay for a billboard plastered with the name on Route 17.

I guess Hackensack residents can only be thankful they don't live in Fort Lee, where residents are urged by business interests to "Be Fort Lee" by a large sculpture of those letters downtown.

Last week, I tried to drive on Main Street, and found a couple of blocks were closed or undergoing reconstruction and conversion to 2-way traffic. That brought to mind "the sacking of Hackensack."

I will never in a million years refer to Hackensack as "The Sack," despite all the exhortations of a business alliance that has profited mightily from downtown redevelopment -- a story The Record has ignored.

I took a photo of the Demarest Place mural with "THE SACK" in September 2019. Artist Damien Mitchell shows jazz tenor saxophone legend John Coltrane in the letter "S." Presumably, Coltrane played in a jazz recording studio in a home on Prospect Avenue that was later demolished to make way for expansion of Hackensack University Medical Center.

READ: http://thesassonreport.blogspot.com/2019/09/a-stroll-on-main-street-new-restaurants.html (http://thesassonreport.blogspot.com/2019/09/a-stroll-on-main-street-new-restaurants.html)

Title: Re: "THE SACK"
Post by: Victor E Sasson on December 05, 2020, 11:17:16 AM
After I posted this, I continued reading The Record story on "The Sack" as reprinted in the Hackensack Chronicle and was surprised the owner of an eatery called BSO Wings on Main Street claimed "development is squeezing out small businesses and making room for chain stores like Starbucks."

Is there a Starbucks downtown? The only Starbucks in Hackensack, as far as I know, is on Essex Street, near the hospital, despite the wish of residents like me for one downtown.

And The Record story also claims "some residents" fear "gentrification will push out struggling businesses and homeowners."

Am I wrong that Main Street businesses have been struggling for many years, even before the apartment building boom started, especially after the Borgs closed The Record's landmark building in 2009 and decamped to Woodland Park?
Title: Re: "THE SACK"
Post by: johnny g on December 05, 2020, 02:54:15 PM
I've had this discussion with many people over the years, trying to pinpoint when the Main St businesses started to fail. Was it when the GSP became an indoor mall, and people didn't have to shop from outside anymore? Was it when they closed the Fox and the Oritani, and more people got cable TV and decided to stay home and watch second run movies, instead of going shopping, getting dinner and taking in a movie?
Was it when Woolworths closed? Cedar Lane in Teaneck always seems to be busy (am I wrong?) When it comes to Main Street, a Starbucks or even a Dunkin would probably be welcomed of course. A familiar name surrounded by independent businesses. I may be a bit out of the loop on the day to day downtown, but am I wrong? We all now what our Main St was back in the day...but will it ever be again? Was there less people around, therefore needing less parking? Did more people take mass transit? I'd love to hear opinions on this...
Title: Re: "THE SACK"
Post by: ericmartindale on December 05, 2020, 05:15:39 PM
Johney, it's a combination of factors. The steady decline in the retail stores as the big ones left one by one, esp. Arnold Constable. Also the decline in the number of well-paid employees working in the downtown. Not only The Record, but also the major banking headquarters at 211 Main Street, and even the County moved its administrative building a block south to Hudson Street. Homeless facilities multiplied after 1985, harming the character and reputation of the areas. All the new residential buildings are designed to spark a turnaround, and yes, they will shop and dine downtown, but the REAL CUSTOMERS are those who work downtown. Once the Downtown becomes trendy, better stores will come in, and then the employers will want to be where the action is. More employers will come to The Sack.
Title: Re: "THE SACK"
Post by: johnny g on December 06, 2020, 07:56:30 AM
I hear your points Eric, but I don't see how simply working downtown equates to more retail customers in the independent businesses...From what I've seen most of the new businesses are food places, and since all the new apartments and condos being built are (in my opinion) to attract more people who most likely work in NYC what really does downtown have to offer in the way of being a "complete" city?
How many dollar stores does Hackensack have? Do the new residents really need probably a dozen barber shops? The years I spent in Lyndhurst I would definitely say that if you wanted to you never really had to leave the town. 2 supermarkets, plenty of chinese or italian spots, mexican or caribbean food as well..Carvel, Dunkin Donuts, TJ Maxx, places for pet supplies, bagel shops, etc...and it's absolutely a commuter town as well. Sadly I agree that Hackensack began to get a really bad rep in the 80's, I too remember one specific homeless shelter right on E Kansas St a few blocks from where I lived...the bus station was always cluttered with homeless as well, when I was at Guy Ross Chevrolet I saw them constantly. It's really a tough idea that up on Summit Ave there's million dollar homes and down on Railroad Ave and the surrounding areas it's still very rundown. How does a city bounce back like they're predicting, or expecting?
Title: Re: "THE SACK"
Post by: BLeafe on December 09, 2020, 06:37:14 PM
Hackensack - being a city - is considered urban. And if you're seriously considering labeling this city as "The Sack", WHATEVER you do, do NOT do proper research and look up that word in an urban dictionary, lest you be dissuaded from sticking us with that poorly-thought-out name!

Heaven forfend!

Title: Re: "THE SACK"
Post by: BLeafe on December 31, 2020, 10:00:00 AM
The Record has come up with the perfect way to end this God-forsaken year: a Top-10 list of "The Most New Jersey Stories of the Year". Look what made #9 (we also made #1):


Happy Sackin' New Year!

Click to enlarge.