‘Come on and take a free ride’ on NJ Transit this week

Before you get too bogged down in classes, this is your chance to get winter break out of your system. Best of all, you can even get where you’re going for free. Once again, New Jersey Transit is offering a free week of public transportation for students.

Go to njtransit.com, fill out the short (and really easy) survey and print out the free ride coupon to present to the train conductor or bus driver on any NJ Transit line. The promotion lasts until Sunday, Jan. 28 and started Jan. 22.

Here are some lesser-known places that NJ Transit can take you, as long as you’re willing to be a bit adventurous.


The Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum in New York City is often overlooked when compared to its more famous “Museum Mile” companions, namely the Guggenheim and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

This weekend could be the perfect time to travel farther north on Fifth Avenue and explore the triennial “Design Life Now” exhibition, which honors ingenious design work by individuals and firms in every imaginable field from architecture and technology to graphics and fashion.

Apple’s iPod and Google are some of the more recognizable examples of radical design that fill multiple floors of the castle-like museum.

One fascinating piece is the display from Hanson Robotics. David Hanson worked on Disneyland animatronics before creating “a patent-pending polymer ‘skin’ called Frubber.” The material “moves the way real skin moves.”

Layered over motors and artificial muscles, it allows a robot’s face to appear eerily realistic.

Hanson’s robotic Albert Einstein, on view in this exhibition, is “the first walking, talking robot with human expressions.”

The mix of both familiar and cutting-edge design really illustrates the range of human creativity and industrial innovation.

The Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum is located on the corner of Fifth Avenue and 91st Street. From Penn Station, walk across town to the 33rd Street 4, 5, 6 subway station on Lexington Avenue and take any train (or the Madison Avenue northbound bus) up to 86th Street.

Student admission is $9. Visit peoplesdesignaward.org/designlifenow to browse all the design submissions.

– Eve Roytshteyn, Photo Editor


With winter weather finally upon us, there is no better way to spend the first weekend back to school than by taking a trip to Mountain Creek Ski Resort in Vernon, N.J.

Since the temperatures have dropped below April flowers weather, the snow makers at local ski resorts are in action, offering trails for both the experienced boarders and skiers and those who are willing to fall a few dozen times on the bunny slopes.

Not only is it easy to get to, Mountain Creek is also good for beginner and intermediate skiers and snowboarders. It’s big skiing for a small resort.

If you can’t make it this week, you can always catch the bus to Mountain Creek on another weekend and use your receipt to get up to $10 off lift tickets.

To get to Mountain Creek, you’ll have to take one of the many buses that go to the Port Authority terminal in New York City. Catch the 194 bus, which is an extension to the original route.

The bus only runs on Saturdays and you have to get there early: It leaves at 7:30 a.m. The bus leaves Mountain Creek at 4:30 p.m. It also stops at the Willowbrook Mall, so in case you chicken out you can always go shopping.

If it’s your first time, check out mountaincreek.com/mountain_info/first_timers_guide/index.htm for hints and tips, plus other stuff in the area.

– Candida DeFonseca, Arts & Entertainment Editor


If you want a night on the town and you’re tired of the Ewing scene, take a trip to Hoboken. The Hudson County town has become a hot spot for young bar hoppers and concertgoers.

Maxwell’s is a small venue where you can have dinner, get some drinks and listen to good music. Though it serves drinks, you don’t have to be 21 to enter. But if you are legal, keep the drink specials in mind. There is a different one every night of the week. There are performers every night this week. The schedule is available at maxwellsnj.com.

Catch the Northeast Corridor NJ Transit train from Trenton or Hamilton to Newark Penn Station and get on the PATH train (for $1.50) to Journal Square for a transfer to the Hoboken train. From the PATH station, take a cab for $3, a bus that goes to Washington Street or go for a walk.

For in-depth directions, go to maxwellsnj.com/directions.html.