11/24/14 4:00pm


This Saturday, November 29th, Sunnyside Shines is hosting a “Small Business Saturday” in the neighborhood. From 12 pm to 1 pm, you can pick up a copy of Sunnyside’s Shop Local Holiday Gift Guide and a “Shop Small” bag at Bliss Plaza, Queens Boulevard and 46th Street. The guide offers gift ideas at 22 local businesses within the Business Improvement District. There will be free giveaways and live music at the plaza, and discounts at local stores like Bing’s Hallmark, Avalon Florist and Red Wing Shoes.

Sunnyside Post also reports that the guide will be sent to 18,000 addresses within the zip code 11104, as well as certain sections of Woodside.

11/24/14 3:00pm

78-19-jamaica-aveThe Queens Courier reports good news that construction is moving on 78-19 Jamaica Avenue, the Woodhaven building that partially collapsed last year. After the collapse, and after much community concern, the Department of Buildings declared the structure hazardous and prepared to demo it after the owners failed to show up in court several times. This summer, the owners reached an agreement with the DOB to rebuild rather than demolish, and now the second floor is built up.

Construction is slated to finish by the end of the year. No word on what will move in once the structure is standing again; a furniture store was forced out due to the collapse.

Woodhaven Building will Finally be Repaired 18 Months After Collapse [Queens Courier]
All 78-19 Jamaica Avenue coverage [Q'Stoner] GMAP

Photo by Salvatore Licata for Queens Courier

The Long Island City Partnership, which runs the current LIC Business Improvement District, is looking to expand the boundaries of the neighborhood BID. Right now, the BID covers Queens Plaza North and South from 21st Street to Jackson Avenue as well as Jackson Avenue to 45th Avenue/Thompson Avenue. The expansion proposal, first published in the Court Square Blog, “would include properties on Jackson Avenue, and portions of the Vernon Boulevard and 44th Drive corridors.” If brought into the BID, these areas would receive increased sanitation, beautification and marketing services.

The LIC Partnership is planning to mail a survey to all the tenants and property owners within the potential expansion area boundaries. For now, the Partnership is just looking for feedback and opinions on the proposal. You can read the full letter sent to tenants here or check out the survey here.

Participate in LICBID Expansion Survey [Court Square Blog]


In 1831, the United States government forcibly relocated the Choctaw tribe from Mississippi to the Oklahoma territories. Many Choctaws died during the trip, known as “The Trail of Tears,” while many survivors faced tremendous hardships adapting to the cold weather. However, the Choctaw had a tradition of helping others and a mere 16 years later — during the height of the Irish Potato Famine in 1847 — they pooled resources and donated $170 to relief efforts on the Emerald Isle.

This weekend, Queens Museum and Queens Theatre will honor this act of generosity with An Irish Choctaw Thanksgiving, featuring live music, dance performances and screenings of inspiring films. Funds raised will go to Hour Children, a Long Island City-based nonprofit that works with incarcerated and formerly incarcerated women and their children, and No Kid Hungry Share Our Strength, a nonprofit that connects children in need to nutritious food.

Details after jump.


11/24/14 12:00pm


We do love this Sunnyside co-op complex, at 45-08 40th Street. It’s got a beautiful interior courtyard and is located right outside the 40th Street 7 stop. This two-bedroom, one-bathroom apartment is asking $389,000. It’s obvious someone has put a lot of work into the space, with the exposed brick and modernized kitchen and bathroom. And the wood floors are just gorgeous. It’s a second floor unit with a unique layout and no square footage listed. We get a good first impression, what about you?

45-08 40th Street, #D24 [Halstead] GMAP

11/24/14 11:00am


Like every kid who grew up in New York City, the expectation was that you would be treated to a “ride” in return for being dragged by your parents to some shopping mall for school clothes. My parents used to display a sadistic glee in tormenting me, saying that they were all out of quarters and that I should think about getting a job. I was five. Eventually, after purchasing garments which my schoolmates would inevitably ridicule me for wearing, Mom and Dad would crack and give me a quarter so that I could get my payoff for consenting to wearing a turtleneck (it was the 1970s). You should have seen what they’d make me go through for a Carvel ice cream cake on my birthday, but that’s another story.

Coin Operated Vending Machines, that’s the official designation of these mechanical bits of street furniture.



11/24/14 10:00am


Bridge and Tunnel Brewery, operating out of Maspeth since 2012, has signed a lease on a warehouse space in Ridgewood. Bridge and Tunnel was an extremely small endeavor in Maspeth — just a nano brewery brewing 1.5 barrel batches. The much-expanded space in Ridgewood will allow for more beer production as well as a bar serving those beers. Here’s a snippet from the announcement on Facebook: “With the nano system operating in all of 150 square feet, this new space will allow for more production, as well as a brewery that you all can actually come by to visit, have a beer, shoot the shite, etc.”

Beers made by Bridge and Tunnel include a dark German style wheat beer, a brown ale, a milk and oatmeal stout, and a chipotle porter. Currently you can drink them at places like MP Taverna, Open Door, The Queens Kickshaw and Claret (here’s the full list of bars). There’s no exact opening date for the brewery yet, but the owner has roots in Ridgewood and hopes to get things moving in the neighborhood in the next few months.

Photo via Facebook

11/24/14 9:00am


What the heck is going on with the New York Times? Just the other week, the Paper of Record was thoroughly made fun of for publishing yet another article comparing Ridgewood to Brooklyn. The comparison had become so ridiculous that the New York Times itself published an article that said “Let’s think twice the next time we’re tempted to declare someplace the new Red Hook.” And now, they’ve gone ahead and published another piece — “Affordable and Reliable, Queens Real Estate Ascends,” with the caption, “Could Queens be the next Brooklyn? Some people are betting yes.” The story again makes reference to “Ridgewood being the new Bushwick” and predictably quotes a string of Queens newcomers who would have never considered living in the borough previously — “I was vehemently opposed to moving to Queens,” a life coach, who now lives in Forest Hills, says.

The article, of course, is about the onslaught on new units coming to Long Island City and Astoria and growing land prices in both neighborhoods. (While the headline says the borough is affordable, many of the newcomers quoted are paying not-so-cheap prices to live in the newer luxury developments.) The rental market is strong, prices are rising, condos are coming, and residents like the community feel of their neighborhoods. We get it, New York Times. It’s time to come up with something actually original to say about this incredible borough.

Affordable and Reliable, Queens Real Estate Ascends [NY Times]

Photo by Mitch Waxman

11/24/14 8:30am


Police Officers Tackle Garbage Problem, Other Issues in Jamaica [NY1]
Astoria Cove Project a Risky Gamble [Crain's]
Construction Progressing on Mixed-Use Building on Jackson Avenue [Queens Courier]
Renewed Hope for Cleaning up Flushing’s Waters [Queens Courier]
Slate, Carlyle Group Plan for 88-Unit LIC Condo Building [TRD]
Participate in LICBID Expansion Survey [Court Square Blog]
Don Korean Grill on 30th Avenue Is Open [We Heart Astoria]

11/21/14 4:00pm


This Wednesday, the Food Bank For New York City visited the Rockaways to kick off its “Thankful to Give” campaign for the holiday season. The Food Bank, alongside the Bed-Stuy Campaign Against Hunger, distributed Thanksgiving turkeys and other holiday trimmings to local residents still struggling with the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. Over 100 families came out and received food for the holiday. This event in the Rockaways is part of a larger effort of the Food Bank’s to distribute a total of 1,350 turkeys to those living in Sandy-affected areas.