Tag Archives: Long Island

Day trips in and around Queens


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Montauk's Camp Hero State Park

QUEENS

Forest Park
Myrtle Avenue, Union Turnpike, Park Lane South between Brooklyn-Queens County Line and Park Lane

This large park has 165 acres of trees, a golf course,  riding trails, historic carousel and more.

Museum of the Moving Image
36-01 35 Ave., Astoria

Learn all about the magic of film at the country’s only museum dedicated to the art, history, technique and technology of the moving image in all its forms. After you check out the exhibits, stick around for one of its evening screenings. 

New York Hall of Science
47-01 111th St., Corona

You don’t need to be a science geek to have fun at this museum, featuring over 450 interactive exhibits that any curious child will love.

Queens County Farm Museum
73-50 Little Neck Parkway, Floral Park

The only working historical farm in the city, visitors can check out the fields, vineyard, farm implements and various farm animals.

Queens Botanical Gardens
43-50 Main St., Flushing

The beautiful gardens and trees provide an urban escape for visitors who can walk around for hours through its 39 acres.

Queens Zoo
53-51 111th St. in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park 

Queens locals don’t have to travel very far to see animals, such as tropical birds, alligators, pumas and bears, at this zoo inside Flushing Meadows Park

The Noguchi Museum
9-01 33rd Road, Long Island City

Founded and designed by internationally renowned Japanese-American artist Isamu Noguchi, this LIC museum is noted for its sculpture garden.

 

 


AROUND QUEENS

American Airpower Museum at Republic Airport
1230 New Highway, Farmingdale, NY

Both the young and old will enjoy this museum of historic aircraft and military vehicles at Republic Airport. 

Bronx Zoo
2300 South Blvd., Bronx 

Not only is this zoo the largest in New York City, it is also one of the largest urban zoos in the country. Throughout the year visitors can check out its hundreds of animal species, children’s zoo, butterfly garden, camel rides and much more. [Photo courtesy of Bronx Zoo]

Brotherhood Winery
100 Brotherhood Plaza Drive, Washingtonville, NY

Dating back to 1839, Brotherhood is America’s oldest winery, and offers tours and tastings. [Photo by Tomas Donoso]

Camp Hero State Park
1898 Montauk Highway, Montauk, NY

This 415-acre park provides a variety of outdoor enjoyment, including extensive trails, a long expanse of beachfront along the Atlantic Ocean and an historic military installation. [Photo courtesy of NYS OPRHP]

Captain Lawrence Brewing Company
444 Saw Mill River Road, Elmsford, NY

In addition to tasting its many beers, including several seasonal varieties, the brewery also has special events—everything from concerts to trivia nights.

Coney Island Beach and Board Walk
Corbin Place to W. 37 St., Boardwalk, Brooklyn

The iconic Coney Island offers lots of fun, whether it’s walking along the boardwalk, riding on the Cyclone roller coaster or eating a Nathan’s Famous hotdog.

Deep Hollow Ranch
Three miles east of Montauk village on Route 27; turn left at Suffolk County Park

People usually think of the southwest when it comes to cattle ranches, but Long Island is home to America’s oldest one. Visitors can tour the ranch and take horse rides along the shore of Block Island Sound. 

Discovery Wetland Cruises
Across Dock Road from the Three Village Inn (150 Main St., Stony Brook, NY)

Take a one-and-a-half hour tour boat tour of an 88-acre wetlands preserve in Long Island.

Discovery Times Square
226 West 44th St., New York

There is plenty to see (and buy) in the heart of midtown Manhattan, but one place that shouldn’t be missed is Discovery Times Square. Currently you can check out an interactive family-friendly exhibit about the secret world of espionage.  

Long Island Aquarium & Exhibition Center
431 East Main St., Riverhead, NY

See sharks, otters, sea lions and more ocean creatures at this acaqurium, which features indoor and outdoor exhibits. [Photo courtesy of Long Island Aquarium and Exhibition Center]

New York Renaissance Faire
600 Route 17A, Tuxedo Park, NY

In its 35th year, this annual festival will bring you back to Elizabethan England with it food, shops, acrobatics, magicians, juggler and more. It runs until Sept. 23.

Pollock-Krasner House
830 Springs-Fireplace Road, East Hampton, NY

Modern art fans will love taking a trip to the home of the late artist Jackson Pollack and his wife. Famous for his drip paintings, which now sell for millions, you can see the studio where he created his famous works.

Six Flags Great Adventure & Wild Safari
Six Flags Blvd. (off of I-195), Jackson, NJ

Just take a drive south down I-195 and you’ll reach this amusement park of thrilling roller coasters and other fun rides plus its safari park.

Splish Splash
2549 Splish Splash Drive, Calverton, NY

Voted one of the country’s best water parks by the Travel Channel, this Long Island attraction is the perfect way to beat the summer heat.  

The Cloisters
99 Margaret Corbin Drive, Fort Tryon Park, New York

A branch of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Cloisters museum and gardens is dedicated to the art and architecture of medieval Europe. [Photo courtesy of The Metropolitan Museum of Art]

Woodbury Common Premium Outlets
498 Red Apple Court, Central Valley, NY

Everyone loves a great deal. From chain store brands to designer goods, you’ll find amazing discounts at this shopping center. 

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

TODAY’S FORECAST

Monday: Overcast with rain showers. High of 79. Winds from the ESE at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of rain 40%. Monday night: Overcast with rain showers in the evening, then mostly cloudy. Low of 64. Winds less than 5 mph. Chance of rain 20%.

EVENT of the DAY: Movie Night in Astoria Park

Come to Astoria Park tonight for a free screening of “Thunder Soul,” a documentary film that gives the positive message that students will excel if encouraged and that teachers can motivate you for life.  Click here for more info or to submit an event of your own

12 injured in Queens fire

Fire officials say 10 firefighters and two residents were injured in a fire at a three-story building in Queens. Read more: NBC New York

Planned hotel sparks concern for Rockaway residents

A planned six-story hotel in Edgemere is raising the hackles of local homeowners who worry it will put the brakes on the neighborhood’s hard-fought revival. Read more: New York Daily News

Abandoned baby found in Qns.

A newborn girl was found abandoned behind a building in a Queens housing project last night, police said. Read more: New York Post 

Over 500 guns bought back by police at Jamaica church

A gun buyback in Jamaica, Queens took more than 500 weapons off the streets on Saturday. Read more: NY1

U.S. Air Force Week underway in New York City

Fighter jet flyovers are planned through Tuesday, to mark Air Force Week 2012. Read more: CBS New York

Two dead following fiery small plane crash in eastern Long Island

A second person has been pronounced dead after a small plane carrying three people crashed in the eastern Long Island town of Shirley on Sunday morning, authorities said. Read more: CBS New York

Melky Cabrera’s bizarre scam to avoid drug suspension attracts attention of federal investigators

Last week, the biggest mystery surrounding the Melky Cabrera steroid suspension was what it would do to the San Francisco Giants’ playoff run. Now the question is whether Cabrera, more than a decade after BALCO, has turned the Giants’ clubhouse into a crime scene. Read more: New York Daily News

 

King endorses Ulrich for State Senate


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

With less than a month until the Republican primary for the 15th State Senate District, Congressmember Peter King endorsed Councilmember Eric Ulrich – adding to the long list of endorsements for the city representative.

“Eric understands that the way to put New Yorkers back to work and grow our economy is by lowering taxes on families and small businesses and reigning in the reckless government spending that has created unsustainable deficits and threatens our competitiveness,” King said. “His conservative principles of limited government, safe streets and a strong quality of life will make him an excellent representative in Albany and I urge all Republicans to vote for him on September 13th.”

Ulrich, who is facing off against former Guiliani staffer Juan Reyes, said he was proud of King’s endorsement, as well as the 10-term representative’s tenure in the House.

“I’m honored to receive the support of Congressman King, a true public servant who has done a great deal for the people of New York,” Ulrich said. “I look forward to working closely with him as a partner on the state level to keep New York City safe, ensure our veterans coming home from war are cared for and revive our economy.”

The primary winner will face off against State Senator Joseph Addabbo, who has represented the district since 2009.

Ozone Park native Ulrich has picked up other major endorsements, including Congressmember Bob Turner, former Governor George Pataki, the Senate Republicans Election Committee and the Queens Conservative and Queens Independent parties.

 

Nonprofit brings ‘Greene’ to Jamaica


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Dan Greene

For many commuters who travel between Long Island and Manhattan, Jamaica is just a stop along the journey. But for Dan Greene, it’s much more than a transit hub.

Greene has developed a passion for Jamaica’s economic development. He has so much interest in the area that in May he became chairman of the board of directors of the Greater Jamaica Development Corporation (GJDC).

Previously, he was vice chairman and has been a board member since 2007.

Greene, 54, who lives in Greenlawn, Long Island and works in the banking industry, has had many business associates in the Jamaica community. He thought that volunteering on the board was an opportunity for him to “get to know the community better.”

Greene hopes to continue to build on the decades of work the nonprofit organization has been doing since it was founded in 1967, and to improve the quality of life of southeast Queens through economic development. As chairman, it’s important for Greene and others on the board to represent the people who live and work in the community, he said.

The GJDC was one of several organizations that pushed heavily for the AirTrain terminal, which connects Jamaica Station to JFK Airport. The terminal, which opened in 2003, helped with Jamaica’s economic development. In the last several decades Jamaica has really been transformed into a pedestrian area, said Greene.

He plans on working hard to make the community more welcoming to businesses, including helping small shops become more successful and attracting big box stores and chains, such as Home Depot, Marshalls and Applebee’s, that might be a good fit for the area.

Recently, GJDC helped create retail space underneath the LIRR underpass on Sutphin Boulevard. Before, he said, it was an uninviting space. More businesses mean more jobs and more shopping options for the community, noted Greene.

The GJDC is also looking to improve the area’s residential and hospitality offerings. The former Queens Family Court on 89th Avenue and Parsons Boulevard was recently renovated and turned into 346 low, middle and market rate rental units, and there are plans for a hotel at Suphin Boulevard and Archer Avenue, near the Jamaica LIRR station.

Greene is proud of the all the work the GJDC has done, and enjoys helping Jamaica become more welcoming.

“The best thing about the job is to see the results,” he said.

 

I DJ Now: Providing professional audio, lighting & video for the New York area


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

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BY CHRISTINA SHANAHAN

Founded in 1990, I DJ Now is an equipment distributor for DJs, hobbyists, schools, hotels, and houses of worship in New York City and on Long Island. The company caters to anyone looking for gear to make their parties, theatrical functions, and venues as exciting and eye-catching as possible.

I DJ Now currently has two store locations, one in Fresh Meadows and one in Babylon, as well as an award-winning website, idjnow.com, where gear is sold and shipped worldwide. Sound systems, DJ equipment, light effects, stage lights, lasers, trussing systems, and road cases are among the many products that the company offers.

The vice president of I DJ Now, Robert Marsh, said he founded the company when we was working as a DJ himself and saw a need for more outlets to purchase equipment from. With funds he borrowed from his parents, Marsh rented a space in the back of a popular DJ record store on Long Island. Today, the company has expanded into a premium source for equipment needs.

“Many have said that I DJ Now is like a candy store for DJs and music lovers,” says Marsh. “We have one of the most incredible lighting and effects showrooms out there, with all new L.E.D. lighting effects and lasers that can be seen from miles away.”

Marsh added that his stores have more than 20 computers that are connected live to the most popular DJ software available, so customers can actually try the programs and controllers before they make a purchase. In addition, the expert staff is knowledgeable about each system and able to offer advice on how to it works.

I DJ NOW

171 Remington Boulevard, Suite A

Ronkonkoma, NY 11779

631 585 1100, Ext. 7410

idjnow.com

Meet the LIU Post faculty


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

LIU Post is home to 320 full-time faculty members with expertise in a wide range of disciplines, including accountancy, business, management, finance, health care administration, public administration and arts management. LIU Post faculty comprises some of the finest thinkers and teachers in business today. Below are several leading professors on the university’s roster.

Dr. Michael Hadani, assistant professor of management, is the author of a ground-breaking study in corporate lobbying and campaign contributions, which has been covered in the Wall Street Journal, MSNBC and Chicago Tribune.

 

 

 

 

Named by Business Week as one of the top business school faculty members in the country, Dr. Maura Belliveau, associate professor of management, is an expert on the processes that define the success of professional, technical and managerial employees, particularly those factors that differentially affect men’s and women’s job search and salary attainment.

 

 

 

Ilene Leopold Persoff, CPA, associate professor of accountancy, was the recipient of the 2002 Outstanding CPA in Education Award from the New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants and served on the New York State Board for Public Accountancy.

 

 

 

Dr. Carl Figliola, chairman of the Department of Health Care and Public Administration, is a widely sought expert in government relations, management and public policy. He serves as a consultant to universities, hospitals, museums and businesses ranging from mid-size to Fortune 100 companies.

 

 

 

Dr. Zenu Sharma, assistant professor of finance, is an authority on corporate finance, financial intermediation, capital markets and emerging markets.

 

LIU Post: Education for the New Economy


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

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A new economy is emerging from the challenges of recent years, and LIU Post is helping individuals and businesses position themselves to make the most of advancements and opportunities.

LIU Post (formerly known as the C.W. Post Campus of Long Island University) offers certificate, bachelor’s and master’s degrees and corporate training programs that promote new ways of thinking, the latest technology, and unprecedented convenience.

Rated a Best Regional University by U.S. News & World Report and located only 20 minutes by car from Queens, LIU Post offers more than 260 programs of study at located at 720 Northern Boulevard (Route 25A) in Brookville.  Courses are available on campus and online during the days, evenings, and weekends throughout the year.

“We are confident about the future, and we’re investing in academic programs that will make it possible to help businesses thrive in the new economy,” says Dr. Paul Forestell, provost of LIU Post, a campus of Long Island University, one of the largest private universities in the nation. “Whether in emerging fields or mainstay industries, a college education can help everyone achieve greater success and fulfillment.”

Business and Accountancy Education

Long known as a leader in business and accountancy education, the College of Management at LIU Post offers a constellation of programs and services for business, accountancy and taxation professionals.

The LIU Post School of Professional Accountancy was the first autonomous school of its kind in the nation. Founded in 1974, the School prepares students for careers as accountants, tax preparers and estate and financial planners. The School offers the M.S. in Accountancy with concentrations in professional accountancy or taxation as well as an M.S. in Taxation. Many courses are available in the blended format, which combines online learning with face-to-face studies.

Accredited by AACSB International, a distinction shared by only 5 percent of business schools worldwide, the LIU Post Master of Business Administration (MBA) is one of the New York metro area’s premier business programs. For the past nine years, LIU Post has been rated one of the “Best Business Schools” in the country by The Princeton Review.

“The business model for success in the 21st century is about freeing your thinking from out-of-date ideas and practices,” said Dr. Andrew Rosman, dean of the College of Management at LIU Post. “LIU Post helps you and your employees to gain more expertise in an area that is already familiar to them but may be changing as market conditions or technology evolves.”

Entering the Technological World

This September, LIU Post is launching a number of programs to meet technological advances of the 21st century.

The Mobile GIS Applications Development program, an online advanced certificate, can help businesses market their products using apps on wireless devices. They will learn how to create apps that pinpoint a client’s geographical positioning and responds with advertisements and tweets of sales and deals within close proximity of their business.

The M.S. program in Environmental Sustainability, the only degree of its kind on Long Island, trains private and public sector professionals to develop business strategies that take into account issues posed by climate change, development, population growth and energy consumption.

An online advanced certificate in Archives and Records Management, offered by LIU Post’s nationally recognized Palmer School of Library and Information Sciences, trains individuals to create and manage electronic records and archives. “Effective recordkeeping is important for all businesses,” said Dr. Gregory Hunter, the director of the Archives and Records Management Program and the Ph.D. in Information Studies at LIU Post. “Whether it is a corporation complying with Sarbanes-Oxley, a hospital implementing electronic health records, or a non-profit institution retaining records related to a grant project, the certificate program prepares professionals to handle and process vast amounts of information and maintain accessible records.”

Corporate Training

For more immediate and highly customized programs, LIU Post’s School of Continuing Education offers on-site training and continuing-education classes at local businesses. From weekly courses and seminars to professional institutes and workshops, LIU Post Corporate Training Programs cover human resources, management and supervision, training and organizational development, computer skills, financial planning, sales and customer service and business communication.

Adult Undergraduate Degree Completion Opportunities

LIU Post also offers a new undergraduate degree completion program for adult learners. This program caters to those who are over the age of 25 who are starting college for the first time or returning after a long absence to complete their bachelors’ degrees. The university offers five bachelor’s degree programs that can be completed entirely during the evening: business administration, health care administration, accountancy, psychology and criminal justice.

For more information about LIU Post, visit www.liu.edu/post or call the Office of Public Relations at 516-299-2334.

Drownings in Queens, Long Island, as lifeguard saves boy


| mchan@queenscourier.com

A 21-year-old Bellerose lifeguard was hailed a hero on the same day families in Douglaston Manor and Long Island mourned the losses of their children in July 4’s tragic drownings.

Christos Voulkoudis, 4, drowned in a relative’s pool in Douglaston Manor around 6 p.m., authorities said. He was rushed to North Shore University Hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival. Police said they do not suspect criminality.

Earlier that day, a one-year-old boy in East Islip fell and drowned at around 12:40 p.m. after climbing the ladder of an above-ground backyard pool, officials said.

Then a capsized powerboat in Oyster Bay trapped and drowned three Suffolk County children — David Aurelino, 12, Harley Treanor, 11, and Victoria Gaines, 8 — during a nighttime Fourth of July fireworks show, police said.

There were 27 people on board — twice the reported number the boat could carry — and the incident, according to reports, may have been caused by overcrowding and powerful waves from nearby vessels on the water.

Voulkoudis’ pool drowning is the first in Queens this summer, but there were 49 deaths citywide due to accidental drowning and submersion between 2006 and 2010 in natural waters or pools, said a spokesperson for the city’s Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.

The vast majority of those deaths, 76 percent, occurred in natural waters. But officials stressed the need for parents to stay vigilant while supervising children in any body of water.

“Most children slip under the water — and it’s silent — in as little as 20 seconds, the time it takes to send a text message or finish an article if you’re reading,” said Mary O’Donoghue, aquatic specialist for the YMCA of Greater New York. “Those 20 seconds you could prevent and be right there.”

According to New York’s Department of State’s Division of Code Enforcement & Administration, swimming pools installed, constructed or substantially modified after December 14, 2006, must be equipped with an approved alarm capable of detecting a person entering the water at any point on the surface of the pool.

Barriers completely surrounding the pool must also be at least 4 feet high, state law requires.

Meanwhile, a Fourth of July disaster was averted thanks to a clear-headed, speedy lifeguard who sprang into action and saved an 11-year-old boy from drowning in a crowded Glen Oaks pool.

Emily Harms, a 21-year-old Bellerose resident, said she was off watch-duty, sitting at a sign-in table doing paperwork at the Royal Ranch pool, when all of a sudden she heard someone screaming her name.

She saw a mother jump into the pool and pull her lifeless son out of the shallow end of the water. Since she was closer to the victim than the lifeguard on watch duty, Harms said she sprinted toward the pair without thinking.

“He was blue and he wasn’t breathing. He didn’t have a pulse,” said Harms, who began administering two sets of CPR with the backup of two fathers who also ran over to help. “He started getting sick and throwing up, but that was a good sign because he started breathing afterward.”

The boy was still unconscious and was rushed by EMTs to Long Island Jewish Medical Center, Harms said, where he is expected to make a full recovery.

Despite all the newfound attention, she said she does not expect the praise.

“This was just part of the job,” she said. “I appreciate everything, but I’m just happy that it had a good ending. It could have been a lot of worse.”

Redistricting may bring Congressmember Steve Israel back to Queens


| mchan@queenscourier.com

Recent redistricting may return one Long Island representative back to his childhood.

Congressmember Steve Israel currently serves the state’s 2nd Congressional District, which is located entirely on Long Island. But come November, newly-redrawn lines mean portions of northeast Queens will be added to the district.

For incumbent Israel, winning re-election would mean gaining a slice of new territory, as well as pieces from his past.

“In a sense, I’m returning to my youth. My father grew up in Queens, and I spent almost every Sunday visiting my grandparents in Flushing. I’ve spent a lot of time there,” he said. “I am incredibly excited. I can’t wait to go to work in Queens.”

The 53-year-old politician from Dix Hills, Long Island, said he is “fully partisan about only one issue.”

And that is his love for the Mets.

Israel is a member of the House Leadership, serving as the chair of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. This month, he was appointed to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council.

Prior to election, he said he was a small business owner for five years, helping with marketing for Jewish community groups and high-tech businesses.

The 2nd Congressional District currently encompasses Huntington, Babylon, Islip, Smithtown and Oyster Bay and will soon include Bay Terrace, Beechhurst, Whitestone, Douglaston and Little Neck. Though the represented counties differ in demographics and property taxes, Israel said his agenda will hardly change.

He said he knows the term “rich” is relative, and still plans to continue advocating for middle class families and veterans, while growing small businesses, protecting Medicare and ensuring neighborhood safety.

Among his accomplishments so far, Israel said he has secured more than $5 million in benefits for Long Island veterans, as well as “record-level” federal investments to protect the Long Island Sound. He also voted to extend the payroll tax cut for working families, saving the average middle class family $1,500 in 2012, he said.

According to both the Nassau and Suffolk County GOP Committees, the only Republican primary challenger to face the incumbent, Israel, is Stephen Labate, a financial planner and active high-ranking officer in the U.S. armed forces. Israel, who has been representing the district since 2001, is running unopposed in the Democratic primary. He was re-elected two years ago, beating Republican challenger John Gomez for the seat by 16,509 votes in Suffolk County.

 

This Morning’s Headlines


| jlane@queenscourier.com

Graphic by Jay Lane

Bust in 1980 Queens slay

An NYPD detective cracked a really cold case this week when fingerprints from an inmate were linked to the death of a Queens man in a home-invasion burglary 32 years ago. Ernest Mattison, 49, formerly of Flushing, was charged with murder in the Sept. 10, 1980, strangulation of Cecil Schiff, 73. Schiff, who fled Poland to escape the Holocaust, was found dead in his Franklin Avenue home, sitting in a chair and bleeding from the head. Read More: New York Post

 

‘Justice for Trayvon’

The parents of a Florida teen shot dead by a neighborhood watch captain vowed at a Union Square rally last night to seek justice for their son. “Trayvon Martin did matter . . . We are not going to stop until we get justice for Trayvon,” the teen’s father, Tracy Martin, told a crowd of 1,200. He described his 17-year-old son as “your typical teenager . . . Trayvon was not, and I repeat, was not a bad person.” He lashed out at George Zimmerman, the 28-year-old aspiring law officer who claims he killed Trayvon in self defense while patrolling his gated community. Read More: New York Post

 

Commissioner Kelly sees parents of slain teen

Police Commissioner Ray Kelly yesterday met for the first time with the parents of an unarmed teenage drug suspect who was fatally shot by a cop in the family’s Bronx apartment, The Post has learned. Franclot Graham, Constance Malcolm and their attorneys huddled with Kelly at One Police Plaza for about an hour, and then exited without comment. The sitdown came about seven weeks after their 18-year-old son, Ramarley Graham, was killed on Feb. 2 by Officer Richard Haste, who was assigned to a Street Narcotics Enforcement Unit. Read More: New York Post

 

No rest for this defense as Mike Woodson’s resurgent NY Knicks impress Philadelphia 76ers

The Sixers missed their first 14 shots, mainly because they had a hard time spotting the basket through the purposeful torsos and hands. These new Knicks frightened Doug Collins on Wednesday night with their sheer dynamism on defense, which is something he saw only from his own team earlier in the season. The Knicks trap now at halfcourt. They front the ball. They block shots and force turnovers. Read More: Daily News

 

Doctors-in-training stage mutiny at Peninsula Hospital 

Peninsula Hospital’s doctors-in-training are staging a mutiny as the troubled hospital’s vital signs continue to look grim following a state-mandated shutdown of its lab, the Daily News has learned. A coalition of furious medical residents are pushing their governing body, the American Osteopathic Association, to revoke Peninsula’s credentials as a teaching facility before the court-appointed overseer gives them all the axe, sources said Tuesday. Read More: Daily News

Man Charged With Molesting Girl In Manhattan Donut Shop

A man accused of touching an 11-year-old girl inside a Manhattan donut shop is now under arrest. Kerry Abrams, 54, is facing sex abuse charges. Surveillance video caught Abrams after the alleged incident on March 7 at the Dunkin Donuts on First Avenue at 21st Street. Read More: NY1

Panel For Educational Policy Approves 19 School Co-Locations

When it comes to sharing school buildings, and the space squeeze that often results, it is common for parents and teachers to be angry. But Wednesday night at a meeting in Chelsea, Manhattan, some parents were so upset they began to cry. Parents from P.S. 53 in East New York, Brooklyn begged the the Panel for Educational Policy not to vote to move their school to a new building. Read More: NY1

 

Queens Bank Robber Attacks Five Banks In Two Months

Authorities were searching Wednesday for a robber in Queens accused of stealing cash from three out of five banks he has attacked since last month. In the most recent incident last Thursday, police say the man in the above surveillance photo walked into a Chase Bank at 66-02 Grand Avenue in Maspeth and handed a note to the teller demanding cash. He took off with an undisclosed amount of money. Read More: NY1

This Morning’s Headlines


| jlane@queenscourier.com

Graphic by Jay Lane

Mets Owners Sell Team Shares Following $162M Settlement With Madoff Victims’ Trustee

Mets owners Fred Wilpon and Saul Katz last week sold 12 minority stakes in the troubled franchise worth $240 million, using the proceeds to pay off Major League Baseball and reduce the team’s crippling debt, The Post has learned. With the moves, the team now has breathing room with its lenders and — combined with yesterday’s Picard settlement — appears to have saved the franchise. Read More: NY1

 

Mets owners could actually make money in Madoff settlement

It’s the biggest win for the Mets since 1986 — but a huge letdown for the fans. The team’s stingy owners will remain at the helm after striking a sweetheart settlement with the lawyer tasked with recouping billions from Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi scheme — and the deal actually casts them as victims of the fraud. The deal heads off a risky jury trial, where a loss could have cost owners Fred Wilpon and Saul Katz up to $383 million and control of the franchise. Read More: New York Post

 

Rangers edge Devils, clinch playoff spot in East

Brandon Dubinsky scored shortly after a fight-filled opening faceoff, and the Rangers became the first Eastern Conference team to earn a playoff spot by beating the New Jersey Devils 4-2 on Monday night. Three fights broke out at the outset and that seemed to jump-start the Rangers, who had lost two straight and five of seven as their once commanding lead in the East dwindled to almost nothing. Read More: New York Post

 

Trayvon Martin shooting: Feds to investigate killing of unarmed black teen by Florida neighborhood watch captain

The growing national attention – and outcry – over the case of an unarmed black teen in Florida who was fatally shot by a neighborhood watch captain has culminated with the federal government’s announcement that it will launch an investigation. The announcement late Monday by the Justice Department followed a day of protests calling for the arrest of George Zimmerman, 28, who claims he shot 17-year-old Trayvon Martin last month in self-defense during a confrontation in a gated community. Read More: Daily News

 

Cops nab burglary suspect — but hunt for ‘Vaseline Bandit’ continues

Police who were already hunting for a burglar who has brazenly pulled off 14 apartment break-ins in Upper Manhattan — using Vaseline to block door peepholes — captured another apartment thief re-handed, casually watching TV, in the middle of a heist tonight. But law enforcement sources said the 20-something perp is not the so-called Vaseline Bandit, who is in his 50s. Read More: New York Post

 

Government may make it easier for airlines to allow passengers to use personal electronic devices during takeoffs and landings

The government is taking a tentative step toward making it easier for airlines to allow passengers to use personal electronic devices such as tablets, e-readers and music players during takeoffs and landings. The Federal Aviation Administration said Monday it is “exploring ways to bring together all of the key stakeholders involved” – including airlines, aircraft manufacturers, consumer electronics makers, and flight attendant unions – to discuss whether there are practical ways to test devices to see if they are safe for passengers to use during critical phases of flight. Read More: Daily News

 

Peyton Manning finalizing contract with Broncos

All that’s needed is Peyton Manning’s autograph. After being pursued by teams around the NFL, the QB with four MVP awards is headed to the land of John Elway and Tim Tebow, agreeing to a contract with Denver that could make the Broncos an instant Super Bowl contender. It could also send one of the NFL’s most intriguing young players packing. So much for Tebowmania. Manning called Elway on Monday morning and told the Broncos executive that he had chosen Denver over the Tennessee Titans and San Francisco 49ers in the wildest free-agent chase of the offseason. Read More: Yahoo Sports

 

3 wounded in Harlem shooting

A gunman shot three men across from a Harlem playground this afternoon, police said. The unknown assailant blasted his victims in front of a deli across from the St. Nicholas Playground on West 129th Street and St. Nicholas Avenue about 2:30 p.m., cops said. A 30-year-old man was wounded in the left hand and leg, a 25-year-old was shot in the left leg, and a 23-year-old was wounded in the butt, authorities said. Read More: New York Post

 

NYPD Ups Security In Wake Of Jewish School Shooting In France

The NYPD yesterday deployed hundreds of cops to synagogues and Jewish neighborhoods citywide after a gunman fatally shot three kids and a rabbi at a Jewish school in France. “Obviously, we’re concerned about what happened in Toulouse,” Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said of the shooting. Read More: NY1

 

Jail guard shot

An off-duty Rikers correction officer was shot by her boyfriend last night outside a Queens diner, police sources said. The woman was hit in the stomach near the USA Diner on Merrick Boulevard in Laurelton at 10:50 p.m., cops said. The shooter fled. It wasn’t immediately clear what sparked the fight. Read More: New York Post

 

‘Gangster’ sought in groom slay

They picked the wrong guy to push around. The Staten Island restaurant worker reportedly thrown to the ground by groom-to-be Anthony Lacertosa and his boozing buddies was purported Albanian gangster Redinel Dervishaj, who then allegedly killed Lacertosa with a butcher knife. Investigators believe Dervishaj, 35, has since fled the city, a law-enforcement source said. Read More: New York Post

 

‘Mad Men’ star Jon Hamm sticks to his guns in calling Kim Kardashian an ‘idiot’

Square-jawed “Mad Men” actor Jon Hamm is sick of your stupid shtick. Channeling his straight-shooting character Don Draper,  Hamm put Kim Kardashian in her place Monday, dissing the curvaceous celebutard yet again. NBC “Today” show host Matt Lauer asked the AMC retro-series actor to clarify the earlier comments he made to Elle UK about Kardashian being a famous-for-being-famous “idiot,” which the reality starlet called “careless.” Read More: Daily News

Congressman Ackerman To Not Run For Re-Election


| jlane@queenscourier.com

Representative Gary L. Ackerman, a longtime member of Congress from Queens and Long Island, announced on Thursday that he would not seek re-election, an unexpected development that brings an end to a colorful political career. Mr. Ackerman, 69, arrived at his decision even though it was quite likely that his district would be spared under the Congressional redistricting process, which the state is close to completing.

Read More: New York Times

Elmont substitute teacher accused of having sex with 15-year-old girl


| jlane@queenscourier.com

Graphic by Jay Lane

Elmont substitute teacher accused of having sex with 15-year-old girl

A substitute school teacher is facing charges she had an illegal sexual relationship with a 15-year-old female student at a Long Island high school. Kaitlin Grant of Elmont was arrested Friday. The 23-year-old woman is charged with criminal sexual act and endangering the welfare of a child. She is scheduled to be arraigned later Friday. The name of her attorney was not known. Read More: New York Post

‘Madam’s’ bodyguard once worked as an NYPD detective

A former NYPD cop who spent a decade working with the Manhattan DA’s office also acted as a bodyguard for the alleged high-end Upper East Side brothel boss now being prosecuted by that same district attorney’s office, sources told The Post today. Ex-cop Selwyn “Sly” Francis appeared in a photograph published today in The Post grinning broadly as accused madam Anna Gristina sat cozily on his lap with her arm slung over his broad shoulder. Read More: New York Post

Notorious B.I.G. remembered: Rapper’s music still lives on 15 years after his death

Can it really be 15 years since the brutal murder of Brooklyn’s own Christopher Wallace (aka The Notorious B.I.G., aka Biggie Smalls)? March 9 marks the sad day when one of the most narratively attuned rappers of all time lost his life at age 24. It only makes it worse that his slaying remains unsolved. Of course, his voluminous stories live on. Read More: Daily News

 

NYPD Reportedly Monitored Muslim New Yorkers Based On Their Religion

New reported information shows that the New York City Police Department has been monitoring people based specifically on their religion. According to documents obtained by the Associated Press, the NYPD kept secret files on businesses owned by second- and third-generation Americans, specifically because they were Muslims. The AP says the department’s secretive Demographics Unit was assigned to investigate the area’s Syrian population in 2007 – but excluded Syrian Jews and Christians from monitoring. Read More: NY1

 

Bloomberg defends Jets QB Sanchez, rejects plea for Peyton

Mayor Bloomberg is playing defense for Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez. The mayor today rejected a plea from a caller to his radio show to help the Jets recruit free agent quarterback Peyton Manning to Gang Green. “We have a Manning playing for the Giants,” the mayor said, referring to Peyton’s brother, Eli. Read More: New York Post

Mom charged with daughter’s death blasts plans to allow son, 6, to testify

A monster mom charged with murdering her 4-year-old daughter railed Friday against prosecutors’ plans to have her young son serve as a star witness when the trial opens next month. Carlotta Brett-Pierce blew up in court as a Brooklyn judge considered whether the 6-year-old boy, Tymel, will have to testify via closed-circuit – or face his mother in person for the first time since the Sept. 2010 death of his sister, Marchella Brett-Pierce. Read More: New York Post

Queens Teaching Aide Charged With Sexual Abuse Of Six Female Students


| jlane@queenscourier.com

Graphic by Jay Lane

Queens Teaching Aide Charged With Sexual Abuse Of Six Female Students

A full-time paraprofessional working in an art class at P.S. 52 in Springfield Gardens, Queens has been arrested and charged with sexual conduct with six female students. Brett Picou, 30, who worked as a teacher’s aide and a substitute at P.S. 52 since 2008, was awaiting arraignment Thursday on seven counts of first-degree sexual abuse, seven counts of forcible touching, one count of second-degree course of sexual conduct against a child and six counts of endangering the welfare of a child, according to Queens District Attorney Richard Brown. Read More: NY1

 

11 people, including 3 kids, escape from house fires in Queens and Manhattan

Eleven people, including three children, escaped two separate blazes in Queens and downtown Manhattan early Thursday — and one may have been the result of a firebomb. The first fire ignited in a Rockaway Blvd. apartment in South Jamaica just before 3 a.m., and the flames trapped the residents inside their homes. Witnesses later told fire investigators that a Molotov cocktail was tossed near the apartment, setting the home ablaze, sources said. Six people on the second floor suffered minor injuries along with three firefighters who were taken to Jamaica Hospital Center for evaluation, officials said. Read More: Daily News

 

Disgraced former Governor returning to national politics with fund-raiser

The Love Gov is climbing back into bed — with lawmakers. For the first time since a tawdry hooker scandal trashed his political career, Eliot Spitzer is holding a fund-raiser for a politician looking to make a national splash. The former governor is hosting the event at his Fifth Avenue home for Washington state gubernatorial hopeful Jay Inslee on March 5. Inslee, currently a Democrat in the House of Representatives, shares many of Spitzer’s left-leaning political stances. Insiders believe Spitzer’s soiree shows he’s trying to become a political mover and shaker once again — this time as a national kingmaker. Read More: New York Post

 

Not-so-Finest moment as cop caught napping on F train

A hero cop has been disciplined for catching Z’s on the F rain while armed and in uniform. Officer Matthew Sobota, 43, was caught snoozing on the subway by a straphanger, who snapped photos with his cell phone camera and emailed them to NYPD brass. “I thought maybe a teenager could take (Sobota’s) gun and sell it or use it. I felt like it was a potentially unsafe thing,” said Martin Bisi, 51, of Brooklyn, who took the photos of the sleepy cop on Feb. 16. Read More: Daily News

 

Knicks lose to Heat; Lin plays poorly

Jeremy Lin finally met his match last night, and it was ugly. In by far his worst performance during this 12-game surreal surge, Lin fell apart under the South Beach spotlight and the Knicks caved with him in a disappointing 102-88 loss to the mighty Heat last night at rabid AmericanAirlines Arena. “He can’t be Peter Pan every night,’’ Mike D’Antoni said. LeBron James, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and point guard Mario Chalmers made sure Linsanity calmed down as the Heat (27-7) won their eighth straight game by 12 or more points — one short of an NBA record. Read More: New York Post
19K taxi drivers accused of ripping off passengers won’t face charges

It was one of the biggest scandals in the taxi industry’s history, but nearly 90 percent of the 21,819 cabbies accused of ripping off passengers with inflated fares will get off scot-free, The Post has learned. In a stunning move, the Taxi & Limousine Commission is giving a free ride to 19,515 yellow-cab drivers caught setting their meters to the higher, out-of-town rate while traveling around the city. Overall, officials estimated that unwary passengers were fleeced for $1.1 million between 2008 and 2010. Of that, $238,854 in overcharges was attributed to the cabbies who will escape penalties. Read More: New York Post

Jimmy Fallon sings ode to Knicks guard Jeremy Lin on Late Night

Jeremy Lin’s game has spoken so loudly that comic Jimmy Fallon performed a Pearl Jam parody to honor the Knicks point guard. With a scraggly wig on his head, Fallon sang a tribute to the Harvard grad to the tune of the band’s 1992 hit “Jeremy.” “At home, shooting free throws and three point shots, waiting for a job/name not yet a pun/Carmelo injury,” he croons. “Came out of nowhere like an Asian Tebow.” Read More: Daily News

 

5 injured in Long Island house fire

Authorities on Long Island are investigating an early morning house fire in which five people were injured. Nassau County arson bomb squad detectives say the fire broke out at the Levittown house on Prentice Lane at 12:30 a.m. today. The four occupants — a 46-year-old woman and three 11-year-old children — managed to get out of the house quickly. They suffered smoke inhalation and were transported to a hospital for treatment. Read More: New York Post

New video shows Bronx boy, 8, just before shooting


| jlane@queenscourier.com

Graphic by Jay Lane

New video shows Bronx boy, 8, just before shooting

An 8-year-old boy was checking out a rack of potato chips inside a Bronx bodega just before taking a bullet in his shoulder, a shocking surveillance video shows. The stunned tyke in a gray track suit, who sources identified as Armando Bigo, can be seen gripping his left shoulder immediately after being shot inside Papa Yali’s Deli in Soundview. Sources said two other people inside the bodega may have been the intended targets of a bike-riding gunman who fired into the small Randall Avenue storefront around 8:15 p.m. Tuesday. The boy was taken to Jacobi Medical Center with a non life-threatening gunshot wound. Read More: New York Post

Long Island woman one of two Western journalists killed in Syria shelling

Two Western journalists were killed Wednesday in the flashpoint city of Homs after Syrian security forces shelled the building where they were staying. UK foreign secretary William Hague confirmed that the journalists were Marie Colvin from Long Island, a veteran war correspondent for The (London) Sunday Times, and French freelance photographer Remi Ochlik. Read More: New York Post

 

Whitney had drug cocktail

Whitney Houston had a deadly mixture of Valium, Xanax and alcohol in her system when her life was cut short at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on the eve of the Grammys, according to a report yesterday. Although the coroner is awaiting final toxicology results to determine which one of the three played the largest role in her death, the preliminary results almost certainly rule out that Houston drowned, although she was found partially submerged in a bathtub. Read More: New York Post

 

Man, 81, pushed to tracks in iPhone theft

An 81-year-old man was shoved onto the tracks at a Brooklyn elevated subway station after he chased a teen who stole his iPhone, authorities said yesterday. The victim was waiting for a J train at the Lorimer Street station in Williamsburg at about 11:45 a.m. Friday when a young punk grabbed his smartphone and took off, cops said. When the man started running after him, his accomplice shoved him onto the tracks, cops said. The victim was pulled from the roadbed and was in stable condition at Woodhull Hospital. Read More: New York Post

Providing Yankees peace of mind is part of Rivera’s legend

If this were just about replacing a closer — even a legendary closer — then the Yankees would have a difficult, yet plausible, job ahead. But if this really is Mariano Rivera’s last season, then the Yankees are on the clock toward something much more difficult: Replacing a feeling. It is not that Rivera avoided all failure. Heck, he blew Game 7 of the World Series. But, even when that ended the 2001 season, no one with the Yankees fretted for one second how that would impact 2002. Rivera would not be cowed and the internal clubhouse confidence in him would not waver. Ever. Read More: New York Post
 

Cardinal Dolan Makes Ash Wednesday Rounds

Cardinal Timothy Dolan hit the ground running this morning, for the start of the Lenten season. Just back from Rome, Dolan arrived at St. Francis of Assisi Church this morning where he handed out food to the homeless. A crowd of well-wishers was on hand to greet him as he started his busy day and to congratulate him on his elevation to the College of Cardinals. Dolan thanked everyone for their support and also addressed the importance of today. Read More: NY1

 

Police: Bicyclist Fired Shot That Hit Boy Inside Bronx Deli

An eight-year-old boy is recovering after being shot in the arm at a Bronx deli on Tuesday. Police say the child was inside Papa Yala’s Deli on Randall Avenue in Soundview when shots were fired from a man riding on a bicycle just before 8 p.m. Investigators say a bullet grazed the boy on his left shoulder. He was taken to Jacobi Hospital, where he is listed in stable condition. Residents said they were concerned for their children. Read More: NY1

 

Bronx Substitute Teacher Charged With Forcibly Touching Student

A city school employee was under arrest Tuesday, as one of the Chukwuma Duru, 27, a substitute teacher at Bronx Career and College Prep High School in Morrisania, was charged with forcible touching and endangering the welfare of a child. The Department of Education says the incident happened at the school on February 9 and involved a student there. Education officials also say the alleged incident does not appear sexual, but Duru has been removed from the school. Read More: NY1

 

Queens Rape Suspect Caught On Surveillance Video

Police are on the hunt for a man who they say tried to rape a woman in Queens this past weekend. Officials say the man, who was seen on surveillance video, grabbed a 25-year-old woman from behind Sunday night around 10:30 p.m. in Ridgewood. They say he then pushed her to the ground and tried to rape her, but snatched her purse and ran off when the woman began screaming for help. Read More: NY1