Thursday, Sept. 23, 2010

Queens pols call on Paterson to declare city a disaster area

Queens elected officials called on Gov. David Paterson to declare the city an official disaster area in order to land federal funding after a massive storm wreaked extensive damage throughout the borough, leaving one person dead, tens of thousands without power and uprooted trees on homes and blocking streets. Comment.

VIDEO: The storm’s aftermath in Bayside

A violent storm with strong winds, flashes of lightning and loud rumbles of thunder struck Queens at about 5:45 p.m. Thursday evening. Dozens of trees were downed in the immediate vicinity of Bell Boulevard and 41st Avenue, and snapped power lines sparked and caught fire. From the Bayside Times offices, workers saw a trash can roll along 41st Avenue and be tossed into Bell Boulevard by the vicious gusts. Comment.

Residents stunned as sudden, fatal storm wreaks havoc in Queens

In the first hour after a sudden, freak storm blew through Queens last Thursday, residents in Flushing walked around the smashed cars and downed trees and telephone wires in states of dazed or giddy shock, snapping photos of the damage with their telephones or asking their neighbors in multiple languages if they were okay. Comment.

Violent Queens storm leaves downed trees, power outages, gridlock in its wake

A fast-moving storm tore through northeast Queens Thursday evening, leaving downed power lines and trees strewn in yards and across streets. Comment.

Man killed in South Jamaica shooting

Investigators were looking for a killer who shot a 29-year-old man outside his home in South Jamaica early Wednesday morning. Comment.

Wednesday, Sept. 22, 2010

Fallen father’s memory drives Stackpole in big game

Brendan Stackpole stood behind the postgame St. Francis Prep huddle with his head down and arms draped at his sides. Comment.

Holy Cross kings of the boulevard

Holy Cross senior Devon Cajuste will play in front of larger crowds, on national television and perhaps even every Sunday in a few years. Comment.

100 Queens eateries join Restaurant Week

Starting this Monday, hungry New Yorkers will be able to get a sampling and more of the borough’s best restaurants at a real bargain. Comment.
Queens Village

Cambria Heights pair charged in web scam

Two Cambria Heights men were among four Nigerians charged in Brooklyn federal court last Thursday with allegedly running a $2 million Internet scam in which victims were told that they had either won the lottery or inherited millions of dollars from a distant relative, the U.S. attorney in Brooklyn said. Comment.
Whitestone Times

Whitestone salon donates hair for needy on 9/11

Dozens of women of all ages gathered at Giorgio’s Salon and Spa in Whitestone Saturday to donate hair for needy girls of tomorrow. Comment.

Downtown Jamaica gets splash of color

A parking lot may not seem like the place to use as a work of art, but for graphic designer Niko Courtelis the dark, confined space provides him with a larger canvas to show off his ideas. Comment.

Families of boro 9/11 victims gather at St. Michael’s

A Sept. 10 afternoon not much different from the morning of Sept. 11, 2001 — blue skies, no precipitation, temperature changing with autumn’s approach — brought together the families of the Queens police officers, firefighters and emergency medical responders who lost their lives in the World Trade Center in a tiny chapel in an East Elmhurst cemetery. Comment.

Caterer wants talk with locals

The owner of Shahi Darbar, a catering hall off Hillside Avenue in Glen Oaks that has drawn the ire of civic associations and residents for what they say are patrons having sex in or on top of their cars, is calling for a sitdown with community leaders over their problems with his business, his spokesman said Saturday. Comment.
Little Neck Ledger

Creative works to highlight Douglaston Village Arts Festival

More than 55 Queens artists will descend on 235th Street next week for the second-annual Douglaston Village Arts Festival, where residents will be able to view various types of arts and crafts as well as listen to music and sample food from the community. Comment.
Crime

Jamaica home vandalized by Brooklyn woman: DA

JAMAICA — A Brooklyn woman was arrested last week for allegedly damaging another woman’s Jamaica home, the Queens district attorney said. Comment.
Crime

Woman, 81, dies crossing Guy R. Brewer Blvd: Cops

SPRINGFIELD GARDENS — A senior citizen was killed in a car accident last week while she was crossing the street, police said. Comment.

White seat attracts big names

A dozen people, ranging from familiar names to political newcomers, have officially declared their candidacies for the November special election to succeed late Democratic City Councilman Tom White, who died of lung cancer last month. Comment.
Laurelton

Brooklyn man murdered on South Jamaica street

Police were looking for any information on who opened fire on a South Jamaica street early Saturday morning, killing one man and sending a woman to the hospital. Comment.

Huntley, Clark defeat Democratic challengers

Experience was the deciding factor in the key Democratic primary races as both state Sen. Shirley Huntley (D-Jamaica) and state Assemblywoman Barbara Clark (D-Queens Village) were returned to office, according to unofficial results. Comment.
Laurelton

City allays fears of floods in SE Queens

City officials made a second trip to southeast Queens Monday night to reassure residents that they would do their best to prevent another flood from inundating their streets and damaging their homes. Comment.

Michael Miller scores big win in primary against Comaianni

State Assemblyman Michael Miller (D-Woodhaven) cruised to victory over his Democratic primary opponent, Community Education Council 24 President Nick Comaianni, 77 percent to 23 percent with 87 percent of the precincts reporting Tuesday night, according to unofficial results, clearing the largest hurdle in his re-election battle. Comment.

No bail for cabbie stab suspect

Despite pleas from his attorney over his mental state, the film student accused of stabbing a Jamaica cab driver because he is a Muslim will remain in jail until his official indictment date, a Manhattan judge ruled Monday. Comment.

Far Rock mother assaulted, brain damaged her baby: DA

A Far Rockaway woman was arraigned last week for allegedly injuring her baby while trying to get her to fall asleep, the Queens district attorney said. Comment.

Doors swing open in Briarwood for all-girls school’s new building

An all-girls public school that has been growing for half a decade now has a place to call home in Briarwood. Comment.
Jackson Heights

Moya fends off Monserrate

Strike two for Hiram Monserrate. Comment.
Jackson Heights

Ferreras blames Monserrate for harassment

A spokesman from the office of City Councilwoman Julissa Ferreras (D-East Elmhurst) said her tires have been slashed and she has received vulgar notes — harassment which her office alleges is from Hiram Monserrate, her former boss when he held her seat. Comment.
Jackson Heights

Doe workers hired to clean up Jackson Heights

The grime and trash on Roosevelt Avenue in Jackson Heights has long frustrated residents and politicians in the area, but with state Sen. Jose Peralta’s (D-Jackson Heights) assistance, some familiar faces — and uniforms — will return to clean up the place. Comment.
Fresh Meadows

Curbs sought on off-campus SJU students

Close to 200 people packed Hillcrest Jewish Center’s auditorium Monday night to express their displeasure with St. John’s University students living off-campus who residents, said hold raucous parties, run around naked or in little clothing, publicly urinate and leave litter around the neighborhood. Comment.

TLC offers group-ride service

Queens residents who once rode the Q74 and Q79 bus lines that were axed by the MTA will be able to use a group-ride livery van service, city Taxi & Limousine Commissioner David Yassky announced this week. Comment.
Fresh Meadows

Boro mother challenges decision not to promote daughter

A Fresh Meadows mother is fighting a school superintendent’s decision to make her daughter repeat the fifth-grade after the girl spent months in summer school to boost her test scores and barely missed the cut-off point to pass the exam.. Comment.
Fresh Meadows

Flushing man charged with cheating senior citizen: DA

A Flushing man has been charged with a number of crimes, including grand larceny for allegedly taking about $400,000 from an elderly acquaintance over the last 10 years and telling the man he was investing it, according to the Queens district attorney’s office. Comment.
Forest Hills Ledger

Reading a message of hope

It was the stories that gave them hope to hang on. Comment.

Flushing Y opens new center to help immigrants

Newly arrived immigrants in Flushing, one of the city’s most diverse neighborhoods, have a new tool to help them assimilate into American society. Comment.

Flushing sword murderer gets sentenced to 19 years: Brown

A Flushing man has been sentenced to 19 years in prison for stabbing his roommate to death with a sword in September 2008, the Queens district attorney’s office said. Comment.

Pol club celebrates century

In 1910, the U.S. Census reported 284,041 people lived in the entire borough of Queens. Impressionism was still the rage in the art world, Portugal became a republic and a box of Kellogg’s Corn Flakes cost about 9 cents. Comment.

CB 7 approves Commons plan with conditions

Community Board 7 took up Flushing Commons, an $800 million mixed-use development project planned in downtown Flushing, for the last time Monday evening and voted to conditionally recommend it to the Queens Borough Board. Comment.
Crime

Would-be robber with shotgun foiled: Police

BELLEROSE — A New Hyde Park man was arrested last week for trying to rob a man with a loaded shotgun, allegedly police said. Comment.
Crime

Brooklyn men rob Fresh Meadows bank: Police

FRESH MEADOWS — Police arrested a quartet of suspects who they said were trying to flee from a bank robbery. Comment.
Crime

K-Rod violates protection order by texting wife: DA

KEW GARDENS — Mets pitcher Francisco Rodriguez was back in court Tuesday, this time for allegedly contacting his common-law wife while she was under an order of protection, prosecutors told the New York Post. Comment.
Editorial

Slater’s Jet Blue Blues

For a brief period of time, Steven Slater was a folk hero. He was a JetBlue flight attendant who vented his anger over the plane’s public address system when the plane landed at John F. Kennedy International Airport. He then grabbed two beers and slid down the plane’s emergency chute. For a brief time, he embodied the dreams of thousands who would like to tell their bosses to “take this job and shove it.” Comment.

Weprin wins big in primary

State Assemblyman David Weprin (D-Little Neck) swept past Democratic challenger Bob Friedrich in Tuesday’s primary, garnering more than 68percent of the vote with 91 of 102 precincts counted by early Wednesday morning, according to unofficial election results.. Comment.

SUV accident kills Queens Village toddler

A 2-year-old Queens Village girl was hit and killed by an SUV Monday afternoon in a freak accident, police said. Comment.

Metro High opens doors to first class

As a group of school officials toured the newly opened Queens Metropolitan High School in Forest Hills last week, they voiced their approval for the extensive facilities, including Smart Boards in every classroom, in an institution expected to help alleviate the overcrowded classrooms that have plagued western Queens. Comment.

MTA cuts back LIRR service

The MTA implemented cuts this week to the Long Island Rail Road, reducing service significantly along northeast Queens’ Port Washington line as a result of lower ridership numbers, an MTA spokesman said. Comment.

Mourners fill Juniper Valley Park for Sept. 11 rites

Although the Sept. 11 attacks are almost a decade old, the close-knit residents of Middle Village, Ridgewood and Glendale say the tragic event is still fresh in their memories. Comment.

Music fills streets of Flushing for Hindu festival

The streets of Flushing were transformed into a path fit for a god as thousands of Hindu worshipers gathered Sunday to celebrate the end of the Sri Ganesha Chaturthi festival. Comment.

Playground honors Queens girl’s memory

A car accident last year cut short Ekaterina Tsiboukis’ time with the friends she was starting to make at the William Spyropoulos Greek-American School of St. Nicholas in Flushing, but the 6-year-old’s legacy will last a lifetime. Comment.

CB 11 OKs change in Bell Blvd meters

Community Board 11 approved a plan to expand parking meters along Bell Boulevard last week despite vocal opposition from some of the board’s members. Comment.

Braunstein wins nomination in crowded Assembly primary

Edward Braunstein, a former aide to state Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D-Manhattan), edged past three opponents Tuesday in the Democratic primary in the first step of the race to replace Assemblywoman Ann-Margaret Carrozza (D-Bayside), according to unofficial election results. Comment.

Stars of Bayside dance for Historical Society

The Bayside Historical Society will demand fancy footwork from northeast Queens leaders this month as it hosts a gala based on the popular television show “Dancing with the Stars.” Comment.

Author from Queens gets his first novel published digitally

Bay Terrace author Steven Jay Griffel said his decision to embrace new technology has allowed him to tell a story that was 40 years in the making. Comment.

Avella protests Bellerose home, Padavan shows up

An abandoned Bellerose house that has been a problem for neighbors for more than a decade became the scene Sunday in the political battleground between state Sen. Frank Padavan (R-Bellerose) and his Democratic challenger, Tony Avella. Comment.

Atlas Park foreclosure auction set for October

A lawyer for a Manhattan firm announced that the Shops at Atlas Park will be sold at a foreclosure auction sometime in early October. But despite the problems renting out the stores in the Glendale shopping center, Paul Millus of Snitow, Kanfer, Holtzer & Millus LLP said he is confident the property can have a successful rebirth. Comment.

Ackerman, Milano to face off in November

U.S. Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-Bayside) bested Democratic opponent Patricia Maher in Tuesday’s primary while James Milano defeated Elizabeth Berney for the Republican slot in the race, according to unofficial election results. Comment.
Crime

Cops search for robber of women in No. 7 train

LONG ISLAND CITY — Police were looking for a man they said has been committing a string of robberies against female passengers while on the No. 7 train. Comment.
Crime

Astoria woman, 39, not seen in 2 months: Police

ASTORIA — Police are asking the public for help in searching for a woman who has been missing for two months. Comment.
Crime

Robbers harm workers at Corona store: Police

CORONA — A group of men are wanted by the authorities for robbing a clothing store and injuring one of the workers nearly two weeks ago. Comment.
Crime

Cops’ search for robber at Astoria nightclub

ASTORIA — Investigators were searching for a man in his 20s who they said robbed and stabbed another man outside a nightclub four months ago. Comment.
Letters

Bayside’s quality of life must remain despite good work done by St. Mary’s

I am writing in response to your Sept. 2 editorial (“Bayside’s Grinches Go to Court”), in which you take issue with my position that the upcoming two-year expansion project at St. Mary’s Hospital must be done in a manner that does not destroy the quality of life of my constituents who live in the surrounding residential community. Comment.
Letters

Jamaica Bay’s bird population always amazes

At the end of July, I went to the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge with a friend who had never been there. We first walked the West Pond, seeing feeding ospreys, an oystercatcher, some immature yellow-crowned night herons and a variety of waterfowl. Then after going through the Visitors Center on the way to the East Pond on the other side of Cross Bay Boulevard, a woman at the desk made our day. She told us to go to the pond’s south end where there will be an opportunity to see shorebirds. Comment.
Letters

Parks Dept needs tree pruning funds

With thousands of trees lining the streets throughout the city, it is important that regular, consistent maintenance be sustained whenever possible. While the city is strapped financially due to the economic situation, there should not be a reduction of funds for the city Parks Department to be able to prune and maintain trees. Comment.
Editorial

Close it Down

Any business that acts without regard for the safety of its patrons and neighbors forfeits the right to operate in Queens. Comment.
Opinion

Our History: Virginia tavern a meeting place for historical figures

The Raleigh Tavern was named for Sir Walter Raleigh, who attempted in 1585 the first colonization of Virginia. The tavern’s history goes back to 1717. Sir Walter’s bust stood above the door and under it passed famous planters, merchants and leaders during what was called “Publick Times.” Comment.
Opinion

Political Action: Padavan says hard work leads to successes in political arena

State Sen. Frank Padavan (R-Bellerose), if re-elected in November, will begin his 20th term in office and, by the time his next term is completed, will have served 40 years. Comment.
Opinion

Dishing with Dee: Electeds show for Valentino’s on the Green ribbon-cutting

While the days are getting shorter, the list of events to cover is getting longer. There were a number of notable events this week, but by far the most interesting one was the ribbon-cutting ceremony/cocktail party at Valentino’s on the Green in Bayside, which was formerly known as Caffé on the Green. Comment.
Opinion

Berger’s Burg: Evil force behind shortening of summer must be caught

If I wished to see a mountain or other scenery under the most favorable auspices, I would go to it in foul weather, so as to be there when it cleared up; we are then in the most suitable mood, and nature is most fresh and inspiring. There is no serenity so fair as that which is just established in a tearful eye. — Henry David Thoreau Comment.

Stavisky defeats Dems seeking her Senate seat

Barring any unexpected developments, Toby Stavisky will hold on to her state Senate seat for another two years after beat her two Democratic challengers, newcomer John Messer and Flushing fixture Isaac Sasson, in the primary. Comment.

NYPD and nonprofit fight sex trafficking in Queens

Detective Juan Toro, a community affairs officer in the 108th Precinct in Long Island City, told a forum at Queens Borough Hall last week that police know sex trafficking is a major issue in Queens and are working to identify victims and perpetrators. Comment.

Boro’s long-shot seats ignored by state GOP

New York’s state Republican leadership made a calculated decision not to run candidates in a number of Queens races, several Queens Republican operatives said in the final week before Tuesday’s primary election. Comment.

Exhibit commemorates history of LIRR East River tunnels

It was a century ago that Long Island Rail Road trains first ran beneath the East River, speeding the trip of Queens, Brooklyn and Long Island riders who no longer had to transfer to ferries on their way to Manhattan. Comment.

Fashion Week takes Queens Center Mall by storm

Queens Center Mall rolled out the red carpet for style Friday when 17 stores did everything from offer style tips for fall wardrobes to serving customers wine and chocolate in honor of the annual Fashion’s Night Out, a shopping event created by Vogue editor Anna Wintour and celebrated throughout the city — and world. Comment.

Make your own political ad on Moving Image site

The Museum of the Moving Image has introduced a new tool on its website that allows its users to create their own political advertisements. Comment.

Muslim holy day draws thousands to Jamaica HS

A celebration of the holiest day on the Islamic calendar brought the religion’s message of peace and togetherness to a crowd of as many as 28,000 worshipers who packed the Jamaica High School football field to the gills Friday morning. Comment.

Prayers for peace end Ramadan fast

After Imam Daud Ahmed Hanif wrapped up his sermon Friday at a Holliswood mosque emphasizing the need for peace and understanding in the world, the nearly 2,000 congregants rose and hugged each other and the phrase “Eid Mubarak,” Arabic for “May you enjoy a blessed festival,” could be heard throughout the crowd. Comment.

Hevesi deflects Dem primary challenge

State Assemblyman Andrew Hevesi (D-Forest Hills) fended off Democratic challenger Joe Fox in Tuesday’s primary, taking 60.34percent of the vote, according to unofficial election results. Comment.

Queens voters hold on to incumbents

In what was widely expected to be a “throw the bums out” election year, Queens residents resoundingly decided they love their bums. Comment.

Klein, pupils upbeat about Briarwood school

City Schools Chancellor Joel Klein, school officials and students praised Queens Gateway for Health Sciences’ new building in Briarwood on the first day of school last week, saying the new location next to Queens Hospital Center will help students vying to make a place for themselves in the medical world. Comment.
Astoria Times

Charter school eyes location at Astoria site

An Astoria/Long Island City-based charter school applying to open a new location for schoolchildren in kindergarten through fifth-grade focused on helping them learn the English language presented its plans at a Community School District 30 hearing Monday night. Comment.

Queens film fest founder admits animal cruelty

Marie Castaldo, the founder and executive director of the Queens International Film Festival, has pleaded guilty in an upstate court to seven charges of animal cruelty, the Ulster County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals said last week. Comment.

Woodside residents irate over DOE plan

Residents of Big Six Towers in Woodside and elected officials are hoping to appeal a decision by the city Department of Education that would force third- through sixth-grade children going to PS 229 to walk over a dangerous intersection on their way to school instead of taking the bus. Comment.

Longtime Assemblyman Aubry retains his seat in Dem primary

Despite having a Democratic opponent for the first time in years, state Assemblyman Jeffrion Aubry (D–Corona) achieved victory over challenger Anthony Miranda, a retired policeman, garnering 63 percent of the vote and winning another two-year term in office, according to unofficial election results. Comment.
Astoria Times

Keep trucks on GCP to avoid Astoria: Pols

Western Queens elected officials are calling on the city to allow large trucks to approach the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway from the Robert F. Kennedy Bridge rather than force the vehicles to drive through Astoria’s streets. Comment.

Muslim holy day draws a thousand to Astoria Park

More than 1,000 Queens Muslims celebrated the end of Ramadan with Eid al-Fitr last week at Astoria Park, where some of the borough’s elected officials and Muslim leaders called for religious solidarity. Comment.

DiNapoli approves Aqueduct VLT contract

State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli signed off on the video lottery terminal contract for Aqueduct Race Track Monday afternoon, giving Genting NY LLC the final approval it needed to officially become the winning bidder for the project. Comment.
Arts

Star Power

What do Al Pacino, a legendary football coach, a wise chauffeur, President Andrew Jackson and Spiderman have in common? They are all part of New York’s theater season this fall. Comment.
Arts

Calpulli celebrates Mexican milestones at QTIP

Jackson Heights’ Calpulli Danza Mexicana is returning to Queens Theatre in the Park this month with an exuberant slate of new dances inspired by the bicentennial of Mexico’s independence from Spain. Comment.
Film

The Reel Queens: New organizers step in to replace Queens Internationall Film Fest

Three Queens-based film festivals are planning to fill in the cinematic gap left in the borough by the Queens International Film Festival’s dissolution after its founder’s arrest on charges of bilking her employees out of thousands of dollars. Comment.

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