Author Archives: Alexa Altman

Local artist spotlight: The ever ethereal Donna Levinstone


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

LIC022013

In a place divided by opposites — old and new, natural and artificial, solid and ethereal — pastel artist Donna Levinstone finds balance. A universe at odds take shape in the fine lines and smudges of chalky clouds and smooth sunsets, juxtaposed against steel and glass. “I’ve always been fascinated with the dichotomy between what’s […]

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Plaza College raises domestic violence awareness


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/ Photo by Alexa Altman

Instead of flowers or chocolates, students at Plaza College celebrated Valentine’s Day by raising awareness about domestic violence. On February 14, students at the Jackson Heights college sold sweets and raffled off prizes to raise money for Safe Horizons, an organization that helps victims of domestic violence by providing counseling, mentoring and assistance with finding […]

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LIC residents say sanitation tickets are a means to evict them


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Alexa Altman

A resident of “the neatest block in Long Island City” is fighting a sanitation ticket, issued, some say, as part of a plot to push low-rise occupants from prime real estate. Ann Leggett, an artist who has lived on Jackson Avenue since 1979, was issued a $100 ticket for trash surrounding her home at 8:22 […]

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Mother of slain National Guardsman vows justice despite grand jury ruling


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Facebook

Even after the verdict was final, Cecilia Reyes vowed her son would get justice. Reyes, the mother of Noel Polanco, the 22-year-old National Guardsman who was killed by a police officer during a traffic stop on the Grand Central Parkway on October 4, was outraged by the court’s ruling that her son’s killer would not […]

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Parents relieved school buses are up and running again


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Alexa Altman

The wheels on the bus will finally be going round and round again. School bus drivers and matrons returned to their posts on Wednesday, February 19, after the month-long stalemate that left more than 150,000 students stranded. “I am very pleased and happy that the strike is over,” said Far Rockaway resident Crystal Blount, whose […]

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Cannibal cop eyed Queens high schooler


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

Photo via Facebook

One object of the “cannibal” cop’s obsession was an 18-year-old softball star from Archbishop Molloy High School. Gilberto Valle, the six-year NYPD veteran who planned to kidnap, kill and consume 100 women, eyed a girl from his own alma mater to join his roster of victims. According to reports, in emails exchanged between Valle and […]

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Queens pol wants to allow pet pigs in NYC


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Alexa Altman

Despite citations, several swine owners are refusing to fork over the pork. State Senator Tony Avella wants to overturn city guidelines prohibiting residents from owning domesticated pigs as pets after constituents squealed for support. “I try to get the city to crack down on illegal construction, illegal contractors where workers have died, where neighboring property […]

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LIC Bar gives back to The Who’s favorite charity


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of TheWho.com

They’re back for an encore. A Sandy-struck venue that received a new sound system from music icons The Who is returning the favor by hosting a fundraiser to benefit one of the band’s favorite charities, Teen Cancer America. LIC Bar, at 45-58 Vernon Boulevard, was inundated by seven feet of water during the superstorm, wiping out […]

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Teen found dead outside Queens home


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

VIA FACEBOOK

A fifteen-year-old girl was found dead outside a home in Rosedale, according to the NYPD. The body of Aeisha Sarooqui was discovered outside 245-07 135th Avenue around 7:40 a.m. on Sunday morning. Sarooqui lived on Parsons Boulevard, several miles from where she was found. It is suspected that the cause of death was a drug overdose, according […]

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Woman’s remains wash ashore in Breezy Point


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

Screenshot Google Maps

A woman’s partially decomposed body was discovered on a beach in Breezy Point this morning, according to reports. While only part of the woman’s skull remained intact, police said there were no obvious signs of trauma. Her identity has not yet been discovered. It is unclear how she died. The Office of the Medical Examiner […]

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Citywide school bus strike over


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

FILE PHOTO

The month-long citywide school bus strike has come to a screeching halt. Drivers and matrons are expected to be back at their posts on Wednesday. According to a statement issued by Mayor Michael Bloomberg, city officials and members of Local 1181 met on Thursday to bring an end to the strike which left more than […]

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Country’s largest rock gym coming to Long Island City


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

Renderings courtesy of Mike Wolfert

Belay on. An enormous rock climbing gym is slated to open in Long Island City this April, featuring 30,000 square-feet of climbing walls, large enough to house 500 climbers. According to owner Mike Wolfert, The Cliffs at Long Island City will be one of the biggest rock climbing facilities in North America. “It’s going to […]

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Cuomo budget centers on job creation, education improvements


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

Photo Flickr/Governor Cuomo's  Office

In his budget outline for the coming year, Governor Andrew Cuomo focused on job creation and improving education, promising to improve the lives of New Yorkers across the state. In addition to jobs and education, Cuomo’s proposal, NY Rising, addresses fiscal integrity and discipline and restoring the state as a progressive beacon. Cuomo proposed an […]

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Bus companies bid for routes as drivers continue to strike


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

File photo

The first major bid for bus routes in more than 33 years garnered 67 requests from bus companies, clamoring for over 1,100 routes, according to the Department of Education (DOE). Bidding for the contracts ended on Monday, February 11, almost a month into the citywide bus strike. The bids are worth approximately $1 billion over […]

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Long Island City murder leads to calls against gun violence


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Alexa Altman

The shooting of a 27-year-old aspiring hip-hop artist near the Queensbridge Houses is raising clamor among politicians and community activists fighting against gun violence. The victim, Francisco Leal, 27, suffered a fatal gunshot wound to the chest around 10 p.m. on Saturday, February 2 at the corner of 21st Street and 41st Avenue. While the […]

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