What to Know
- The day is finally here -- when Hollywood meets Newark courtesy of this year’s MTV Video Music Awards
- The city has been preparing for this movement for a while to make sure all goes as planned
- Traffic is expected in the surrounding area given that a number of streets have been shut down
The day is finally here -- when Hollywood meets Newark courtesy of this year’s MTV Video Music Awards.
And while celebrity arrivals start at 5:30 p.m. Monday, there was a lot of preparation to get to this point – including shutting down a number of streets and deploying hyndreds of police officers.
If you take a look around the location where the awards ceremony is scheduled to take place, you’ll see officers at checkpoints – and even more throughout the area.
Taphara Lundy arrived to the Prudential Center in the heart of Newark’s downtown Monday morning to get a prime spot that allows her to see her favorite celebrities walk the red carpet.
“We wanted to be here early to see the celebrities come out,” she said, adding: “I’m really excited and I’m ready to stand here for the next eight hours, nine hours, even though my feet are hurting just to see them.”
Officers have already shut down several streets around Prudential Center. The closures are in effect until 2 a.m. Tuesday.
Chopper 4 could see crews putting the finishing touches on the event. A sprawling red carpet seen from above is ready to go as workers focused on the little details.
“It looks amazing,” Newark resident Misha Adams said. “I’m excited.”
Meanwhile, 300 officers are on hand, backed up by several undercover cops and other event security.
Newark’s Director of Public Safety Anthony Ambrose said he is impressed so many heard his warning and opted to work from home.
“I’m glad they did,” Ambrose said. “Anyone stuck in traffic today, they were well aware since Friday.”
As a result to the word getting out days in advance of the impact the event will have on area traffic, downtown sidewalks were busy but not packed Monday. Although, bus riders did face certain challenges.
“I was on the bus and they put me off at University Hospital and I had to walk down. I knew what was going on. They had it blocked,” Joey Strong, of Newark, said.
In the end, its just a minor headache fans who are thrilled the VMAs are in Newark have come to accept.
“This is a good look for the people, for the city. The cops out here are not harassing people. Making sure everyone is safe and that's good,” Newark resident Derek Peterson said.