05/20/15 9:45am

Living

A three-day model train show headlines this week of activities, followed closely by Brazilian, Irish, and Japanese cinema, plus a documentary on the New York State Pavilion. There’s also a “color run” and Greek, Mexican, classical, and doo-wop concerts. Here’s the rundown.

May 20, North Beach, 7 pm. The Greater Astoria Historical Society hosts a lecture/slide presentation on North Beach, a summer resort where LaGuardia Airport is now. $10. QED Astoria, 27-16 23rd Ave., Astoria.

May 20-23, Rebecca Patek, 8 pm. This NYC-based choreographer and performance artist synthesizes dance, theater, and comedy. This performance is loosely based on “The Crime of the Century” — the 1924 murder of Bobby Franks by Nathan Leopold and Richard Loeb. $15. The Chocolate Factory, 5-49 49th Ave., Long Island City. (more…)

05/15/15 1:00pm

Pyramid

The Socrates Sculpture Park in Long Island City was founded specifically to show large artworks in an outdoor setting, but even so, its next project is remarkably huge. On Sunday, Agnes Denes will unveil The Living Pyramid, a site-specific earthwork consisting of several tons of soil and planted grass that will span 30 feet at its four-sided base and rise 30 feet in the air by the East River.

The Budapest-born Denes has used pyramids to examine environmental priorities and social hierarchies for five decades. (more…)

05/11/15 1:00pm

1

When people describe Queens as “diverse,” they usually cite the residents and restaurants. But the borough has varied music as well, as it is a veritable treasure trove of composers, ensembles, and singers.

You can enjoy everything from classical to cutting edge during the fourth annual Queens New Music Festival this week. (more…)

05/11/15 9:45am

Here’s my short list of three destinations in Queens worth visiting even if you live outside the borough. They all offer some great outdoor scenery, whether in the form of street art, architecture or beautiful green space. Two are parks.

bsQ_051015_3things_001

Welling Court Mural Project

Missing 5Pointz in Long Island City? That renowned graffiti spot may be no more, but you can get your fill of grassroots urban art at Welling Court, where the Ad Hoc Art Group has been curating public street art since 2010. There’s some fantastic stuff here, and it’s all free to enjoy. (more…)

05/07/15 1:00pm

3

‘Tis the season to enjoy the great outdoors, and Long Island City is the place to do it this Saturday. Many cross sections of the Western Queens community will come together to celebrate the second annual LIC Springs! 

There will be live music, dance, and theater. There will be fitness classes, sports contests, and pop-up activities.

There will be sculpture- and wood-making, a site-specific art gallery, and printmaking. There will be children’s activities, such as a scavenger hunt and glitter tattoos.

And finally, there will be freshly shucked oysters, BBQ, and a gelato-eating contest. (more…)

05/07/15 9:45am

Bangra

Carol Burnett comes to Queens this weekend. Lucky her! She’ll find great opera, Cameroonian music, Brazilian film, Indian modernist art, Mexican dance, Canadian puppetry, a brand new musical, and even kite-flying. Here’s the rundown.

May 7, Operatic Classics, 7 pm. The Queens Symphony Orchestra presents classic selections with Metropolitan Opera tenor Chad Shelton and baritone David Adam Moore. Free. Electrical Industry Center Auditorium, 158-11 Harry Van Arsdale Jr. Avenue, Fresh Meadows.

May 8, Laughter and Reflection with Carol Burnett, 8 pm. This 90-minute interactive experience’s format harkens back to the openings of The Carol Burnett Show, when her studio audience had an unfiltered opportunity to engage the comedian with questions and receive spontaneous answers. $39-$85. Colden Auditorium, Queens College, 65-23 Kissena Boulevard, Flushing. (more…)

05/06/15 9:45am

bsQ_050615_lic002

Today is the birthday of Long Island City. Here’s her origin story.

In the mid 19th century, Newtown was a municipal entity that encompassed many, many towns, cities, and villages, whose borders stretched from the East River all the way into modern day Nassau County and from Newtown Creek to Bowery Bay. The center of gravity, politics-wise, was in Flushing and Jamaica, where baronial agricultural operations ruled the roost.

In the 1850s, the only railroad connections offered to the local populace went from Jamaica to Brooklyn. The city of Brooklyn was eager to reduce the amount of rail traffic flowing through it and passed a series of laws hindering or outright forbidding the passage of trains. By the 1860s the railroad people were looking for new routes in and out of Manhattan, and decided on one that traveled through Newtown.

Political resistance from the eastern side of Newtown slowed them down — those baronial farmers were worried about competition for the lucrative Manhattan market emerging from Eastern Long Island — so the owners of the NY & Jamaica railroad were forced to get creative. (more…)

05/04/15 9:45am

bsQ_050315_coolcars_001

Many times have I shown you Cool Cars, Queensicans.

There was the Zombie Response Jeep in Astoria/Woodside, the Cool Cars of Astoria and Industrial Maspeth, that 1949 Plymouth on the Woodside/Maspeth border over by Mt. Zion cemetery, and that nearly perfect 1957 Pontiac Star Chief encountered on 38th avenue in Astoria. Cool Cars, but all production model automobiles.

What I saw the other day on Jackson Avenue at the corner of Queens Street was some sort of bizarre chimera, however. (more…)

05/01/15 12:00pm

42-37-27-street-long-island-city-queens-condo

This 530-square-foot studio condo in Long Island City is part of a newer building built in 2015. The ceilings are 11 feet high which adds some space and also allows the windows to be bigger, bringing in lots of light throughout. The kitchen has new granite countertops and stainless steel appliances, including a dishwasher.

Plenty of transportation options are nearby — the E/M, N/Q/R, 7, and G trains are all within walking distance. There are parks and dining options in the area, and the East River is a couple blocks away. The sale is listed as $560,000 with an estimated monthly mortgage of $2,106.66. Click through for more photos.

42-37 27th Street, #5 [Wonwoo John Change, Realtor] GMAP (more…)

04/29/15 1:00pm

NoguchiStudio

It’s TGIF and FFF. On May 1, Noguchi Museum will launch Free First Friday, a true-to-its-name program that will repeat on every first Friday of the month during spring and summer. The Long Island City sculpture garden/art gallery will not charge an admission fee during these times, and its doors will open to the public at 10 am with extended hours until 8 pm.

Guided tours will be offered in Japanese and English at 2 pm, and a cash bar with wine and beer will open at 5 pm. Plus, the venue will bring back its popular Center of Attention program, on some occasions a staff-led conversation on one of the collection’s pieces,  and at other times film screenings co-hosted with the Architecture and Design Film Festival. (more…)