Tag Archives: Citi Field

Mets launch website for potential postseason ticket sales


| rpozarycki@queenscourier.com

Photo via Facebook/New York Mets

With the New York Mets in a pennant race for the first time in Citi Field’s history, the team offered some additional hope to its long-suffering fans on Wednesday in launching a website for potential postseason game tickets.

Fans can visit www.mets.com/postseason and register for the opportunity to purchase tickets for October baseball at Citi Field should the Mets advance to the playoffs. Registration is free and there is no obligation to purchase tickets.

Fans have until noon on Sept. 10 to sign up for a chance to buy tickets for a possible National League wild card game or National League Division Series games in Flushing. Once the registration period is complete, the Mets will select registered fans through a lottery, and selected fans will be notified via email thereafter with additional information.

Beyond the Division Series, fans can also register for potential tickets to the National League Championship Series (NLCS) and the World Series. The NLCS registration deadline is noon on Monday, Oct. 5 (the day after the regular season ends), and the World Series deadline is noon on Tuesday, Oct. 13. Both deadlines are listed as applicable and dependent upon the Mets securing their playoff spot, the first time they would do so since 2006.

Coming off their most recent victory over the Philadelphia Phillies, the Mets sit atop the standings in the National League Eastern Division, with the Washington Nationals 6 1/2 games behind in second. The Mets and Nationals square off in D.C. next week in a three-game series, and the two rivals will close out the regular season with a three-game set at Citi Field on Oct. 2-4.

Many Met fans hope that the latter series, unlike in previous years, won’t be a must-win for the Amazins.

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Gastropub and beer bar is newest concession stand at Citi Field


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Randolph Group and Entertainment Fusion Group

BY KIRSTEN E. PAULSON

Mets fans wanted it, and now they’ve got it — after winning the second annual Citi Call-Ups Program, Randolph Beer, an American gastropub and beer bar, will be joining the culinary lineup at Citi Field starting July 23 during the Mets’ first home game after the All-Star break.

The new concession stand will be offering the jerk chicken po’boy, a new take on a traditional southern sandwich crafted just for Citi Field by Randolph Executive Chef Masterful Davis. The stand will also serve Randolph’s collaboration beer, brewed by LIC Beer Project and specially created to go with the sandwich.

The stand will be located on the outfield concourse, near the Shake Shack and Two Boots Pizza stands, and will be open during home games for the rest of the 2015 Mets season.

“We envision a fan at the ballpark holding the jerk chicken po’boy in one hand and a cold beer in the other. It just fit,” said Dave Plate, co-founder and Partner of Randolph Group.

For the second year in a row and in an effort to bring New York’s favorite flavors to Citi Field, Citi nominated four New York City eateries for the Citi Call-Ups Program that fans could vote for in online and in-stadium polls. This year, Randolph Beer beat out Crepes & Delices, Bagel Stuffins by Bantam Bagels, and Zengo.

Since 2007, Randolph Group has aimed to satisfy a wide variety of palates with three distinct locations throughout New York City: Randolph at Broome, a cocktail dive and café; Randolph Beer, an American gastropub and craft beer bar; and Randolph Brooklyn, an eclectic garage bar and restaurant.

“We see Randolph as a New York City institution that has been serving quality cocktails, craft beer, southern soul food and providing an authentic Manhattan vibe for over eight years,” said Hari Kalyan, co-founder and partner of Randolph Group. “We are very excited that the New York fans chose Randolph Beer to become part of Citi Field, another authentic New York institution.”

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Get into the stretch at special Citi Field yoga session


| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

COURIER/File photo

Yoga Alliance is giving the seventh-inning stretch a whole new meaning this summer as they host Yoga Day at Citi Field.

Yogis are invited to purchase a $45 ticket to enjoy a one-hour yoga session led by Yoga Alliance-certified instructor Stephanie Armijo on the outfield grass of Citi Field on Aug. 15.

Included in the price of the ticket is free parking for the morning yoga class, plus a ticket for that night’s game as the Mets face off against the Pittsburgh Pirates at 7:10 p.m.

Participants should bring their own mat and bottled water, as the concession stands will not be open. Check-in begins at 8:30 a.m. at the Bullpen Gate and the class begins promptly at 9:30 a.m.

At the end of the one-hour class, participants will need to exit Citi Field and re-enter the stadium at the normal game-day gate opening at 5:10 p.m.

For more information, please contact Christina Andrews of the New York Mets group sales department at 718-559-3069 or candrews@nymets.com.

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Shake Shack to open location in Queens Center


| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Photo by Evan Sung

Something is shaking at Queens Center.

Shake Shack, the critically acclaimed “roadside” burger stand which has locations throughout the United States and world, has confirmed it will be opening in 2016 at Queens Center in Elmhurst.

Although Shake Shacks have opened at sites in JFK Airport and Citi FIeld, this will be the company’s first stand-alone location in Queens.

The establishment, which has five locations in Manhattan, is known for its 100 percent all-natural, antibiotic-free Angus beef burgers, crinkly cut fries and much more.

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Queens Courier reporter challenges Queens 10K


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Photos courtesy NYRR

A challenge of speed this was not.

I quickly realized the New York Road Runners (NYRR) Queens 10K would have talented, serious marathoners when about 9,000 runners gathered at Flushing Meadows Corona Park on Sunday despite a night of rain and threatening gray skies above.

Thankfully the forecasted showers held off, but my finish time of 48:52 shouldn’t be considered fast when the male first-place finisher Ayele Megersa Feisa clocked in at 30:14 minutes and female winner Etaferahu Temesgen finished at 33:16.

I ran in part to see if the NYRR met its self-regulated goal to produce a race that promotes and represents the borough. And kudos to NYRR for keeping the 6.2-mile race in Flushing Meadows for more than two decades as it highlights many of Queens’ jewels on the course.

“The park has so many beautiful iconic structures,” said Peter Ciaccia, NYRR’s president, events and TCS New York City Marathon race director. “To go through the whole course and see the museum, see the Unisphere, run past Citi Field, it’s pretty cool.”


Running around this landmark-filled green space is like a trip to a museum, and this year competitors raced through a transforming park.

We passed the expanding Billie Jean King National Tennis Center and enormous cranes roofing Arthur Ashe Stadium. We saw the New York State Pavilion, which is being rehabilitated, and curved around Meadow Lake, which is being restored.

Then there’s Citi Field, where the New York Mets have been rebuilding for some time, and towards the end, we wrapped around the revitalized Queens Museum, and passed by the Unisphere — the “World’s Borough’s” symbol — before coming to the finish line.

It is undoubtedly a fun race that showcases much of what the borough has to offer, but the truth is the Queens 10K can still do more to accentuate Queens.

Those familiar with Queens know its famous structures well, but for foreigners of the borough, if some signage existed along the course maybe it would help runners develop further interest in them.

And while the Queens 10K serves as the borough’s representative in the Five-Borough Series, I found it weird that Queens — the largest borough by land mass — has the shortest race. I was told for logistical reasons it wouldn’t be a good idea to expand the race in Flushing Meadows. But because it is smaller it is viewed as an easier event for some running clubs.

I had one problem with the actually course road itself: there were crater-size pot holes around the Meadow Lake section that we had to hop and dodge. The Parks Department should take care of that before next year’s event.

Post-race, there was a fun festival with games for children, a raffle and food vendors. It’s a brilliant idea, but while there was an array of food trucks that frequent Manhattan, I was disappointed that Queens’ reputation as being a hot spot for diverse food wasn’t highlighted by the inclusion of more local food businesses.

The 7 train’s reputation for being shoddy was witnessed by many runners though. The Flushing-bound line had delays that prevented some runners from getting to the starting line on time. This isn’t helpful to promote the race or the borough. While the NYRR is not at fault, it did acknowledge the problem and is trying to appease affected runners.

Recognizing that the race could use a tune-up, next year the NYRR will turn to local runners to find ways to add even more Queens spirit to the event.

“There are a couple of running clubs out here in Queens that are interested [in showcasing the borough more],” Ciaccia said, “so I want to work with them over the course of this year and see what tweaks they are interested in.”

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Citi Field to host qualifier for Nathan’s hot dog eating contest


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photos courtesy of Shea Communications

Baseball and hot dogs go together like fireworks and Independence Day.

So what better venue to hold the regional qualifier for the Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog Eating Contest than Citi Field.

The top male and female finishers at the event, to be held on Sunday, June 14, at 11 a.m. in the main entrance of the stadium’s Jackie Robinson Rotunda, will go on to compete in the famous food-eating competition in Coney Island.

According to the legend, the event started on July 4, 1916, the same year Nathan Handwerker opened his hot dog eatery in the neighborhood, and has been held there annually ever since.

“The launch of the annual hot dog eating contest circuit signals the impending arrival of summer,” said Wayne Norbitz, president and COO of Nathan’s Famous. “As we celebrate our 99th year, Nathan’s Famous is proud to be part of the American summer and all the enjoyment that it brings.”

Winners of the June 14 regional at Citi Field will face last year’s champions, Joey Chestnut and Miki Sudo.

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Chestnut of San Jose, California, who will seek his his ninth straight title in 2015, holds the current world record for eating 69 Nathan’s Famous hot dogs and buns in 10 minutes. Sudo of Las Vegas, last year’s female winner, consumed 34 hot dogs and buns in 10 minutes.

The competition is sanctioned by Major League Eating and in recent years has attracted an estimated 35,000 fans. Millions of viewers also watch from home on ESPN, which first started airing the contest in 2004.

Those interested in competing in the qualifier at Citi Field should visit www.majorleagueeating.com for more information and to register. All competitors must be over 18 years of age.

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Willets Point property, not part of city’s mega development plans, hits the market


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy Ana Jimenez/ PropertyShark

And then there was one.

The only property in Willets Point that was not owned by the city and will not be handed over to developers for the neighborhood’s massive revitalization plan has been listed for sale.

The property at 34-09 126th St., across from Citi Field between 34th and 35th avenues, comprises a one-story warehouse on a 20,000-square-foot lot.

An asking price was not disclosed, but offers are being accepted, according to Swain Weiner, president of Greiner-Maltz Investment Properties, which is marketing the site. The property has been popular with investors, because it has a maximum of 130,000 buildable square feet and it will be surrounded by housing and entertainment of the new Willets Point neighborhood when development plans are completed.

“It’s the odd piece out. That’s the beauty of it,” Weiner said. “Just imagine when everything is built.”

The remaining property for sale is in a special zoning district and a variety of projects could be built there, including a hotel or residential structure, Weiner said.

In March, the Sunrise Cooperative, a group of auto shop owners that rented space in Willets Point for their businesses, agreed to move to the Bronx in exchange for $5.8 million.

The Bloomberg administration tapped the Queens Development Group, a joint venture between real estate firms Related Companies and Sterling Equities, for the Willets Point mega project following a request for proposals in 2011.

In the first phase of the plan, a shopping center with 200 stores and other attractions will be built to the west of the baseball stadium, where there is currently a parking lot. Then the area to the east, where all the auto shops are located on contaminated land known as the Iron Triangle, will be remediated.

After the cleanup, developers will build a residential community of 2,500 housing units, 35 percent of which will be affordable, and community facilities, a public school, more retail, a hotel and parking space. The city said that it would create 12,000 construction jobs and another 7,100 permanent jobs once development is complete.

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Adopt a rescued dog at Citi Field this weekend


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Photos courtesy of North Shore Animal League America

BY ASHA MAHADEVAN

Dozens of pups will be looking for a new friend at Citi Field this weekend.

The North Shore Animal League America, the world’s largest no-kill rescue and adoption organization, is putting up for adoption 70 dogs that it recently rescued from a puppy mill in Oklahoma.

The adoption drive is part of the organization’s Fall Festival, that is taking place at Citi Field’s Lot G, located at 123-01 Roosevelt Ave., on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The rescued dogs belong to a variety of breeds including bulldogs, poodles and terriers. The Animal League’s veterinarians provided the dogs with the necessary care and all the four-legged creatures are now being groomed in preparation for the event.

Joanne Yohannan, the organization’s senior vice president of operations, said that in the past 70 years, they have rescued more than one million animals.

“These dogs symbolically represent the first of the next one million we will save in years to come,” she said.

The Fall Festival will also host other adoptable dogs, cats, puppies and kittens and feature activities such as carnival games, face painting and psychic readings. If you already have a pet, you are encouraged to bring them along to the festivities.

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LIRR Mets-Willets Point Station getting $9.7 million makeover


| ejankiewicz@queenscourier.com

Photo via Wikimedia Commons

The Long Island Rail Road ‘s Mets-Willets Point Station will be getting a $9.7 million renovation that calls for, among other things, an elevator to ease access from the platform to Flushing Meadows Corona Park, the National Tennis Center and Citi Field, according to the MTA.

The funds come from the MTA and plans are currently being made for the project to be completed by 2016. The MTA hasn’t made a decision about the designs for the additions. But the plans are being designed to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act by installing tactile warning strips at the edges of the platform and constructing new staircases with guardrails and handrails. An MTA spokesman said that designs will be complete by 2015

“The MTA and the Long Island Rail Road are committed to doing our part so LIRR customers with disabilities can attend the U.S. Open, Mets games and other special events that come to Flushing Meadows Park,” MTA Chairman and CEO Thomas Prendergast said.

The renovations also include the extension of the platform to accommodate 12-car trains, a new canopy fully covering the platform, and new lighting and communication systems.

The Mets-Willets Point Station, located on the railroad’s Port Washington Branch, is strictly a special events station, open only when the Mets are playing or the U.S. Open is underway. The station was opened in 1964 for the 1964-65 World’s Fair but it was built without special accommodations for people with mobility impairments.

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90-year-old Mets fan, WWII vet honored at Citi Field


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of state Sen. Toby Ann Stavisky

BENJAMIN FANG

A veteran’s service to wounded soldiers earned him recognition with his favorite team.

Longtime Mets fan Leonard Merer, 90, was given a New York State Senate proclamation on the night of his birthday, Aug. 4, by state Sen. Toby Ann Stavisky. The Mets selected him as its Veteran of the Night.

Merer was a medic during World War II. His notable service included tending to the many casualties in Normandy after D-Day.

For his service, French President François Hollande recently awarded Merer the Insignia of Chevalier of the Legion of Honor.

 

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Watch ‘Sharknado 2’ strike Citi Field


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/File photo

BENJAMIN FANG

Watch out Mets fans—the Sharknado is back and it’s hitting Citi Field.

Sharknado 2,” the sequel to the fictional made-for-TV movie about a whirlwind so strong it lifts man-eating sharks into the city, will premiere on the Syfy network on Wednesday at 9 p.m.

In the movie, swarming sharks attack humans next to iconic New York City sites, including Citi Field, home of the New York Mets.

As sharks fall out of the sky and water floods the city streets, Ian Ziering, who plays the protagonist, goes around town killing the deadly animals.

“Sharknado 2,” also features Tara Reid, Vivica A. Fox Vivica A. Fox, Mark McGrath and Judah Friedlander.

 

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What to do if there is an LIRR strike


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy Metropolitan Transportation Authority


Subways, shuttle buses, and even ferries– the MTA is pulling out all the stops to supplement LIRR service in case 5,400 workers strike starting on July 20.

As contract negotiations with unions continue to fall apart and the impending LIRR strike draws closer each day, the MTA released its contingency plan Friday to address the 300,000 riders that would be stranded daily with the loss of the train service.

Most of the MTA’s plans focus on Long Island customers, but there are resources and tips for riders from Queens and other boroughs.

There will be 4,000 free, secured parking spots at Citi Field and an additional 3,000 spots at Aqueduct Racetrack, where drivers can drop their cars and then take the No. 7 or A trains to work. Through social media and digital platforms, such as Twitter and a LIRR mobile app, agency officials plan to update riders on how many spots are available in the lots and traffic conditions.

The transportation agency also hired 350 school buses, which lack air condition, to shuttle riders from stations in Long Island to the No. 7 train near Citi Field, the A train in Howard Beach, and also the M and R train station on Woodhaven Boulevard. The buses will run from Long Island into Queens between 4 a.m. to 7 a.m. and return to Long Island from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.

There will also be ferry rides that can carry 1,000 passengers per day from Glen Cove to 34th Street in Manhattan on 40 minute rides. But the MTA warns that parking near to the ferry is very limited.

The MTA is encouraging riders to telecommute if they can work from home. According to officials, about 18,000 workers already plan to do so.

Through its free lots and shuttle buses, the transportation agency estimates it can handle about 15,000 passengers daily, more than double the 7,000 passengers daily from the 1994 LIRR strike contingency plan.

“When the LIRR unions went on strike in 1994, Long Islanders had very limited options. There were no park-and-ride lots, no ferries, no real-time monitoring, no telecommuting,” said MTA Chairman Thomas Prendergast. “Today, the MTA has a far stronger, more robust, multifaceted plan. Working with the state and elected officials from across Long Island and the city of New York, we are providing more shuttle buses, thousands of parking spots near subway stations, a ferry service, real-time traffic management and real-time parking monitoring.”

The MTA doesn’t yet know how much per day the contingency plan will cost, and officials said they hope not to have to use it.

For more details on the plan, click here.

 

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Where to celebrate the Fourth of July around Queens


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Macy’s

Friday makes the 238th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence and, weather permitting, Queens residents can celebrate the country’s birthday with a boom.

The Macy’s fireworks extravaganza has moved back to the East River after a five-year hiatus, but the show is centered downriver in Brooklyn.

Still, there are many spots to view the fireworks — but not all of them are free.

Z Hotel in Long Island City is selling tickets to watch the fireworks show from their rooftop lounge. Tickets go for $66.56 for kids and $166.03 for adults.

On Center Boulevard, LIC Landing by Coffeed will be hosting an all-you-can-eat barbecue with a view of the fireworks for $100 a ticket.

The Starstream VIII, which sails from the Flushing Marina, is having a waterborne viewing party that includes dinner and a cash bar for $125.

Cheaper options include Resorts World Casino, which is hosting a free viewing event at Bar360 and on their sixth-floor parking lot.

Another free option is the Gantry Plaza State Park in Long Island City on the East River.

And baseball fans will be treated to a fireworks display at Citi Field as the Mets host the Texas Rangers.

But the baseball may be a washout and the fireworks may fizzle as Hurricane Arthur took aim at North Carolina Thursday and is expected to impact much of the East Coast.

 

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Bacon and Beer Classic coming to Citi Field


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Bacon and Beer Classic

JANAE HUNTER

Bacon, beer and baseball will come together next month when Citi Field hosts the Bacon and Beer Classic.

Started by Cannonball Productions, the Bacon and Beer Classic is part of a series of events hosted by major league baseball stadiums throughout the country. Fans of baseball, as well as both bacon and beer, will get the chance to taste history as they walk through the stadium, sampling craft beer and bacon inspired goodies. There will also be live music, dancing, games, beer schools and cooking demonstrations.

“This certainly won’t be a run-of-the-mill experience for guests. The Bacon and Beer Classic brings together the best in local food, brews, and entertainment,” said Kate Levenstien, founder of Cannonball Productions and the Bacon and Beer Classic. “Because New Yorkers are such die-hard sports fans and so knowledgeable about craft beer and gourmet food, we’re thrilled to be hosting our next event at Citi Field in July.”

The Bacon and Beer Classic takes place at Citi Field on July 26. Tickets for either the brunch or evening session start at $39 and can be purchased here.

 

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Bicyclist struck and killed near Citi Field


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

A bicyclist was fatally hit by a minivan near Citi Field Tuesday afternoon, cops said.

The victim, who has yet to be identified by police, was riding his bike westbound on Roosevelt Avenue around 126th Street at about 12:50 p.m. when he was struck by a Mercury Villager that was driving in the same direction, officials said.

The bicyclist was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police said the driver remained at the scene of the accident and the NYPD’s Collision Investigation Squad is investigating.

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