Tag Archives: fireworks

Where to celebrate the Fourth of July around Queens


| 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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Fourth of July fireworks returning to East River


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo: Ed Reed for the Office of Mayor Bill de Blasio

Updated 2:35 p.m.

A boom is coming back to the Queens waterfront this Independence Day.

After moving to the Hudson River in 2009, the Macy’s 4th of July Fireworks show is returning to the East River this summer, the department store and Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Monday.

The country’s largest pyrotechnic July Fourth display, the fireworks will be launched from the Brooklyn Bridge and from barges positioned on the lower East River.

“What this means, the fact that fireworks come back to the East River, means that countless more New Yorkers will now be able to enjoy what is really the greatest annual fireworks show in the country,”  de Blasio said. “From Brooklyn to western Queens to the East Side of Manhattan, many more New Yorkers will be able to take part in this celebration, in their neighborhoods, on their rooftops, along the shoreline.”

The 2009 move not only left Queens residents without a place in the borough to watch fireworks on the holiday, but hurt businesses along the East River that saw increased traffic during the festivities.

“For too long, residents of our neighborhoods have been left out of what is not only a citywide, but a national event,” state Sen. Michael Gianaris said in a statement. “Once again, the Queens waterfront will be a participant in the grandest Independence Day celebration in the United States.”

 

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Macy’s, local pols to meet about moving fireworks back to East River


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

liducks fireworks2

Macy’s executives are planning on meeting with local politicians, including Councilmember Peter Vallone Jr., to discuss moving its Fourth of July fireworks back to the East River. The meeting was scheduled for today, but was cancelled, said Vallone.

This July 4 was the fourth year in a row that the Macy’s fireworks display was on the Hudson River, leaving nowhere in Queens to see fireworks on the holiday.

Joining Vallone will be New York City Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz and State Senator Daniel Squadron of Brooklyn. To help their case, they will present Macy’s with a petition to return the fireworks to the East River. Since it was launched on June 28, over 3,000 people have signed the petition, said Squadron spokesperson Amy Spitalnick.

Vallone has been urging the department store to return the fireworks to the East River for years, but with de Blasio and Squadron’s help, Macy’s has finally agreed to sit down and discuss the move. “The East River is the heart of New York City and the people of Queens and Brooklyn should have front row seats,” he said. “Having it here on the East River helps Queens and Brooklyn businesses.”

Though Vallone would prefer that the fireworks were on the East River each year, Macy’s is likely to agree to alternating them between the Hudson and East rivers.

 

What to do in Queens: July 4 holiday


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

File photo

Even though you can’t see fireworks in Queens, there are still plenty of fun things to do around the borough this Fourth of July holiday.

 

TUESDAY, JULY 3

Fireworks at Citi Field
Following the 7:10 p.m. Mets game vs. the Phillies, the Mets will have its annual fireworks night at Citi Field. Don’t have tickets to the game? You can catch a great view of the fireworks from other location near the stadium, including the Home Depot parking lot, located at 131-35 Avery Avenue.

 

WEDNESDAY, JULY 4

Independence Day Festival in Queens Village
Starts at 10 a.m. at Sanford Avenue between Main Street and Union Street

Louis Armstrong Birthday Tours 
Louis always celebrated his birthday on the Fourth of July. The Louis Armstrong House Museum honors him by remaining open  from 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.  for special tours that include celebratory birthday photos, audio clips and a complimentary cupcake for kids 12 years old and under.

Skyline Princess NYC Fourth of July Fireworks Cruise
Skyline Princess’s Fourth of July Dinner cruise features a five hour cruise with a front row seat for the famous Macy’s fireworks display in New York Harbor. The cruise boards  from the World’s Fair Marina in  Flushing Meadows at 5:30 pm. Sailing time: is at 6:00 p.m. and it returns at 11:00 p.m.

Free Summer Movie at Socrates Sculpture Park
Celebrate July 4th with a program of short films that is funny, revelatory, dramatic and all-American. “The American Experience” starts at 7:00 p.m.


THURSDAY, JULY5

Chinese Golden Dragon Acrobats
The Chinese Golden Dragon Acrobats are coming back to Queens Theatre, located at 14 United Nations Avenue South, Flushing Corona Park in Flushing. There is a new cast, new acts and new thrills! Performances will include a combination of acrobatics, traditional dance, costumes, ancient/contemporary music and theatrical techniques.

Sissy McGinty’s Trivia Night
Sissy McGinty’s, located at 25-67 Steinway Street in Astoria, is holding their weekly Trivia Night from 9 p.m. – 11:45 p.m. This week, they will be celebrating the Fourth of July and there will be drink prize for the round winners and a bar tab for the champion.

 

FRIDAY, JULY 6

First Fridays at the the Noguchi Museum
The Noguchi Museum, located at 9-01 33rd Road in Long Island City, has a First Fridays feature which includes a pay what you wish admission with an extended evening hours (5:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.). Beer and wine will be offered at the cash bar and a special programming will include “Center of Attention,” and others.

Rocky McBride’s Neon 80’s & 90’s Party
Rocky McBride’s, located at 27-01 23rd Avenue in Astoria, will be hosting a Neon 80’s & 90’s party f rom 7 p.m. – 3 a.m. Come out wearing your favorite neon and enjoy the night with drink specials and more!

Mariachi Flor de Toloache
The Mariachi Flor de Toloache, the all-female mariachi band, will be performing at the Queens Kickshaw, located at 40-17 Broadway in Astoria, from 9 p.m. – 11:30 p.m..

 

SATURDAY, JULY 7

Warm Up at MoMA PS1
Every Saturday this summer, starting July 7, MoMA PS1, located at 22-25 Jackson Avenue in Long Island City, has an outdoor series that features  live music, sound, performance and DJs. It is held at their courtyard. From 2 p.m. – 9 p.m., the admission fee is $15 and this includes access to all exhibitions and Warm Up.

 

 

 

Queens shut out, Macy’s fireworks again over Hudson River


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

File photo

For the fourth summer in a row, there will be no Fourth of July fireworks on the East River, and no place for Queens’ residents to see them in the borough. Instead, the 36th Annual Macy’s July 4 Fireworks will again take place on the Hudson River.

Restaurants near Long Island City’s Gantry Plaza State Park, a popular spot for viewing fireworks when they were on the East River, have seen the effects of the fireworks’ relocation. Since they moved, restaurants have fewer customers on July 4. Though some report greater differences than others do.

At Riverview Restaurant & Lounge there has been a significant difference for the last three Independence Days. Located just across from Gantry Park, at 2-01 50th Avenue, it was a tradition for people to come to the restaurant and watch the fireworks, said Riverview’s event coordinator, Doris Nowillo. Whether inside or outside, people could see them because of the restaurant’s large windows.

When the fireworks were on the East River, about 200 people would come to the restaurant, but now it is less crowded than an average night, she said.

Even after three years, people still call the restaurant, not knowing that the fireworks are only on the Hudson this year. After we tell them, they hang up and don’t make a reservation, said Nowillo.

“[July 4] would triple our business,” said Mimi McKenna, a hostess at The Waterfront Crabhouse (2-03 Borden Avenue). There used to be people lined up outside waiting for a table, but for the past few years, no one has had to wait to be seated, she added.

Italian restaurant Bella Via has seen about a 20 percent drop in customers since the fireworks relocated, but still does good business on the holiday, said owner Sal Polito.

Though the restaurant no longer has as many customers from other Queens neighborhoods, as it did when the fireworks were on the East River, it’s still busier on July 4 than other nights, said Polito.

Ryan Linchow, manager of Pan-Asian fusion restaurant Shi, at 4720 Center Boulevard, just across from Gantry Park, said that since the fireworks moved his restaurant has also had a 20 percent drop in customers on the Fourth of July. But “last year was still really busy,” he added.

It’s not just local restaurants that are pushing for the fireworks to return to the East River. “If there was a petition [to bring the fireworks back to the East River], all of Long Island City would sign it,” said Nowillo of Riverview Restaurant and a 37-year L.I.C resident.

Nowillo got her wish. On June 28, State Senator Daniel Squadron, whose district includes parts of Brooklyn and downtown Manhattan, and Public Advocate Bill de Blasio announced an online petition demanding that the fireworks return to the East River. Squadron and de Blasio, along with Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz, will meet with Macy’s in the coming weeks to move the fireworks back to the East River in 2013.

“What we all were told was a one-year hiatus on the Hudson has now become the new norm—leaving more than half the city out of the July 4 celebration,” said de Blasio at a press conference on June 28. “We look forward to sitting down with Macy´s to find a way to bring the show back to the East River, where more New Yorkers can be a part of it.”

In early April, Squadron along with other Brooklyn and Queens politicians, including Councilmember Peter Vallone Jr., who represents Long Island City, sent a letter to Macy’s chairman, president and CEO, Terry Lundgren, urging him to bring the fireworks back to the East River this July 4. But they couldn’t convince the department store to make the move this year.

 

On July 3, following the 7:10 p.m. Mets game vs. the Phillies, the Mets will have its annual fireworks night at Citi Field.

 

 

 

Explosion kills man in his home


| mchan@queenscourier.com

bomb3 011W

A man described as emotionally disturbed was killed in an at-home explosion in South Ozone Park.

Police found 50-year-old Theodore Ellinghaus unconscious in his 111th Avenue home on Monday, January 23 at around 9:30 a.m.

According to Kenneth Zorn, Community Affairs officer for the 106th Precinct, police found no other explosives and could not identify the exact type of explosive detonated. However, several published reports say the blast came from fireworks, which reportedly tore through the victim’s fingers and ripped through his stomach.

Zorn said officers then evacuated the immediate area — including Ellinghaus’ home and the entire block in each direction — until the NYPD’s Bomb Squad and Arson & Explosion Squad arrived.

Though bomb squad officials determined that Ellinghaus had no terrorist ties, it is still not clear whether or not he was trying to commit suicide or harm others.

There were no other reported injuries.