Tag Archives: Queens

See it: Queens homes light up for the holidays

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Mike Savitsky

Queens residents always go all out when decorating their homes for the holidays. This year is no different, and the 2014 light displays in the area do not disappoint.

The Queens Courier has found and photographed some of the best, so take a walk or drive around the area to spot these and other festive houses.

Howard Beach



Identify this place in Queens

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com


Do you know where in Queens this photo was taken? Guess by commenting below! The answer will be revealed next week.

Last week’s answer to “Identify this Place”:  IS 125 in Woodside

Woodside IS 125



Build it Back looking to speed up and localize Sandy recovery process

| slicata@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/File photo

The new Build it Back program is adding staff and hiring new construction managers in a bid to speed up the Superstorm Sandy recovery process.

The program is now hiring up to three new construction management firms for Sandy-stricken areas, hoping to increase the number of rebuilding projects getting underway. Along with hiring new managers, Build it Back is also looking to hire a local workforce of low-income residents who were affected by the storm to be part of the rebuilding process.

“This new procurement hits two of the city’s recovery goals: expanding our construction capacity to meet the needs of homeowners as quickly as possible and expanding our local workforce initiative to keep construction jobs within Sandy-affected communities,” said Amy Peterson, director of the Mayor’s Office of Housing Recovery. “Since the mayor’s overhaul, this has been a year of significant progress, and we expect the onboarding of new construction firms – who will deploy new strategies to target entire neighborhoods – will continue to accelerate the city’s Sandy recovery.”

There will be separate competitions for the new construction managers in the three boroughs hit by Sandy: Staten Island, Brooklyn and Queens. The city will hire up to three new firms, one for each borough if possible, that will focus on specific neighborhoods within each borough.

Once hired, the construction managers will sign a contract with a clause that will encourage them to have at least 20 percent of employees be Sandy-impacted residents. They will have to provide the city with full-time staff member tracking to make sure it is in compliance with the Sandy Recovery Hiring Program.

For the possible Sandy-impacted workers, they will be given job training and then have a chance at an apprenticeship to work on the construction team.

As the process moves along, construction managers will be asked to “bundle” homes that have much of the same structural damage in a particular neighborhood to deliver a higher volume of completed projects.

When the new system came in at the beginning of the year, there was no construction started. Now, there have been 933 rebuilding projects started and over 1,951 reimbursement checks given out totaling $34 million throughout the city.


Give the gift of Queens this holiday season

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com



Whether you are trying to find a present for your favorite neighbor or want to give a far-off relative a souvenir from your hometown, these Queens-themed gifts are as diverse as the borough they represent.

Bond No. 9 Queens

Queens perfume

Photo courtesy of Bond No. 9 New York

Price: 100ml bottle for $270 and 50ml bottle for $195

Queens is arguably the most ethnically diverse borough, and now local and outer-borough residents alike can smell like Queens. New York City-based fragrance company Bond No. 9’s unisex creation smells of “citrusy” bergamot and “come-hither” blackberry, among other notes that are mixed with sandalwood, musk and amber. Purchase it here: www.bondno9.com, Saks Fifth Avenue and their boutiques at 9 Bond Street, 399 Bleecker St., 897 Madison Ave., 863 Washington St. and 45 Main St.

Queens: A Culinary Passport (Exploring Ethnic Cuisine in New York City’s Most Diverse Borough) by Andrea Lynn

Price: Print list price is $19.99, but you can purchase it for the Kindle price of $8.89

Queens A Culinary Passport by Andrea Lynn PHOTO

File photo

This borough boasts a full range of ethnic restaurants to choose for all your dietary needs and cravings. But where to start? Astoria resident Andrea Lynn has the solution in her book, “Queens: A Culinary Passport.” Inside this fully illustrated book you can find chef and restaurant profiles, guides to more than 40 restaurants and food stands and, of course, recipes for the adventurous eater to try out at home. Purchase it here: www.amazon.com, www.us.macmillan.com.

Queens Is My Borough Pouch

Price: $12.95

Queens Is My Borough Pouch 2

Photo courtesy of Lockwood

Rep your borough or if you’re not a resident of Queens, your love for this diverse borough with the “Queens Is My Borough Pouch.” This cotton canvas mini sac measures 6.25 x 10 inches and is secure enough to hold all your essential to-go items, perfect for carrying all your traveling items as you go from country to country all in the comfort of Queens. It has a zipper top and is made in the USA. Purchase it here: 32-15 33rd St., Astoria, www.lockwoodshop.com.

Vintage Astoria Maps

Astoria vintage map

Photo courtesy of Lockwood

Price: $25.00

This exclusive Lockwood item is made by artist James McDonald. Each 11 x 17 inch Astoria map poster features a map of the neighborhood as seen through historical documents that have been scanned and brushed up by the artist. Choose from a parchment color or nautical blue, and prepare to get lost in a world that is strangely far away yet close to home. Purchase it here: 32-15 33rd St., Astoria, www.lockwoodshop.com.

No. 7 Manhattan to Queens T-Shirt

Men #7 Tee

Photo courtesy of New York Transit Museum

Price: $21.00, or $18.90 for members

All aboard! Ship this one-of-a-kind, 100 percent cotton short-sleeved tee to anyone who is a fan of both boroughs, believes the 7 train is the gateway to the best of both worlds or is simply a junkie for all things related to the MTA. If you’re a member of the Transit Museum, you can purchase the T-shirt for only $16.80. This shirt is a great choice for both women and men. Purchase it here: Retail stores at the New York Transit Museum (corner of Boerum Place and Schermerhorn Street in Brooklyn Heights) or at the Grand Central Terminal Shuttle Passage, www.transitmuseumstore.com.

Queens NYC Typography Map Cell Phone Case iPhone 5 Cases

queens phone case

Photo courtesy of Zazzle

Price: $44.95 per case

This already custom-made iPhone 5 case of a typography map of Queens is designed to include all the borough’s neighborhood and park names within its boundaries. Can’t keep your fingers off of Queens? Have it always in the palm of your hands as you text and swipe away in and out of your beloved neighborhood. Artwork is designed by iconyc. Purchase it here: www.zazzle.com.


The Unisphere, Queens, New Aluminum License Plate

Globe License PlatePrice: $16.99

Drive around with the world within your grasp — at the back of your car, to be exact. This 12 x 6 inch license plate depicts iconic Queens landmark the Unisphere and is made of durable aluminum. It is also water-resistant, which is great to weather out any winter storm that might come your way. This plate used to be $19.50 and is available now at a cheaper price, and it can be shipped within two days of an online purchase. Purchase it here: www.cafepress.com.

Queens Baby OnsieInfant Bodysuit

Price: $22.00

Start the little ones early with their pride for Queens. Dress them up with a baby bodysuit that boldly displays their love for the borough. Purchase the suit in cloud white, sky blue, petal pink or kiwi. It is made of 100 percent soft ringspun cotton and there are three snap closures for easy diaper changes. Purchase it here: www.cafepress.com.

Myrtle Avenue, Queens, NYC Mug

Price: $16.50

Myrtle Avenue Large Mug

Photo courtesy of CafePress

You don’t have to live on Myrtle Avenue to drink your coffee or tea out of this Queens-friendly mug. There are various other Queens streets to choose from, and they’re all made of high-fired ceramic and are microwave and dishwasher safe. This mug holds 15 oz. of fluid and stands 4.5 inches tall. Now your mug will sure to stand out from all the rest at your company’s kitchen sink. Purchase it here: www.cafepress.com.







Identify this place in Queens

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com


Do you know where in Queens this photo was taken? Guess by commenting below! The answer will be revealed next week.

Last week’s answer to “Identify this Place”: Greenpoint and Borden avenues





Identify this place in Queens

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com


Do you know where in Queens this photo was taken? Guess by commenting below! The answer will be revealed next week.

Last week’s answer to “Identify this Place”: Frank M. Charles Memorial Park

Frank M. Charles Memorial Park




How to celebrate the holiday season in Queens

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

The Woodhaven BID’s tree lighting


From holiday markets, to historic house tours, to tree lightings and more, these events are just some of the ways to feel festive in Queens this season.

LIC Holiday Market
When: Every Saturday and Sunday through Dec. 21, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Where: 5-25 46th Ave., LIC
The LIC Flea Market will take over two floors, where will you will be able to visit your old favorite outdoor vendors, as well as meet new ones. There will be boutiques featuring clothes, art, soaps, jewelry, furnishings, accessories, delicious treats and more. There will also be live music, a beer garden and a chance to take pictures with Santa.

Sabba Park Snowflake Lighting & AcapellaQ Caroling
When: Dec. 1, from 6 to 8 p.m.
Where: 48th Street and Queens Boulevard, Sunnyside
The Sunnyside Chamber of Commerce invites you to welcome the holiday season with cookies, Santa and caroling by AcapellaQ. There will be traditional carols at the park, and then a procession to 46th Bliss St. Station Plaza for more caroling.

The Woodhaven BID’s Christmas Tree and Menorah Lighting Ceremony
When: Dec. 5, 6:30 p.m.
Where: Forest Parkway Plaza, intersection of Forest Parkway and Jamaica Avenue
At this year’s lighting ceremony there will be costumed characters and a surprise visit from Santa Claus as part of the Woodhaven Business Improvement District’s “Holidays in Woodhaven Weekend.”

Welcome Santa to Woodhaven Parade
When: Dec. 6, 11:30 a.m.
Where: Woodhaven Manor, 96th Street and Jamaica Avenue
The parade will proceed along Woodhaven’s Jamaica Avenue to Dexter Court, and free goodies and Santa hats will be distributed at the beginning and at the end of the parade.

Holiday Happening
When: Dec. 6, from noon to 3 p.m.
Where: George Seuffert Bandshell in Forest Park, Woodhaven Boulevard and Forest Park Drive
Celebrate the holiday season with crafts, music, games and a surprise visitor.

Wreathmaking Workshop
When: Dec. 6, 7
Where: 73-50 Little Neck Pkwy., Floral Park
Make an evergreen wreath with friends at workshops that are being held at 10 a.m., noon and 2 p.m. at the Queens County Farm Museum. Admission is $20 per person. All materials are provided; you only need to bring a garden shear.

Flushing Historic House Tour and Holiday Market
When: Dec. 7, 1 p.m.
Where: 137-35 Northern Blvd., Flushing
You’re invited to visit seven historic sites in Flushing and learn about their unique histories as you celebrate the holiday season this year. Each site will offer special activities and refreshments, and a trolley will take visitors from one historic house to the next. Flushing Town Hall is also having their first Holiday Market where there will be artists and crafts from the Queens area selling their wares in the gallery from 1 to 5 p.m. during the tour. There will be paintings, paper goods, jewelry, handcrafted ceramics and more. Tickets are $25/$20 in advance for adults, and $10 for children 12 and under. For tickets or more information call the Queens Historical Society at 718-939-0647.

Winter Solstice Celebration and Tree Lighting
When: Dec. 7, from 1 to 5 p.m.
Where: Queens Botanical Garden, 43-50 Main St., Flushing
Get in the holiday spirit with an afternoon of holiday celebrations filled with family fun, including a winter garden tour, live musical performances and a tree lighting ceremony. Garden admission is free.

Hands-on History: Deck the Halls
When: Dec. 13, from noon to 3 p.m.
Where: King Manor Museum, 150-03 Jamaica Ave., Jamaica
On this special holiday tour of the museum, learn how the King family celebrated the season and create your own winter and holiday decorations.

Citi Field Winter Fest
When: Dec. 13, from 1 to 5 p.m.
Where: Citi Field, 123-01 Roosevelt Ave.
The New York Mets and Metropolitan Hospitality are hosting the first Winter Fest at Citi Field. Attendees will enjoy an afternoon of family fun activities including winter arts and crafts, mascot appearances and more. Family-friendly activities at the event will include a meet and greet with Santa, cookie decorating, fan photo opportunities and holiday caroling. There will also be festive food and beverages for sale, including a specialty eggnog and winter beer. Tickets for Winter Fest are $10 for adults and $7 for children and can be purchased online at Mets.com/WinterFest. Free parking is available in Lot G for ticket-holders.

Hands-on History: Deck the Halls
When:Dec. 13, from noon to 3 p.m.
Where: King Manor Museum, 150-03 Jamaica Ave., Jamaica
On this special holiday tour of the museum, learn how the King family celebrated the season and create your own winter and holiday decorations.

Winter Holiday Festival
When: Dec. 14 at 1 p.m.
Where: Flushing Town Hall, 137-35 Northern Blvd.
This free art-making workshop is family-friendly and a fun way to celebrate Hanukkah, Christmas and Kwanzaa with activities geared toward each holiday. Storyteller Robin Bady will share her favorite stories, Timothy Bellavia will help you create beautiful Christmas wreaths using recycled fabrics and ribbons that will be donated to local senior centers in Queens, and storyteller Tammy Hall will share tales from African traditions of the Kwanzaa season.

Holiday Open House
When: Dec. 26, 27 and 28, from 12 to 4 p.m.
Where: 73-50 Little Neck Pkwy., Floral Park
Enjoy tours of the decorated Adriance Farmhouse at the Queens County Farm Museum’s annual Holiday Open House. There will be craft activities for the kids to enjoy, and all visitors are welcomed with a cup of freshly mulled cider. Admission is free.

To submit holiday events to our online calendar, email events@queenscourier.com.


Queens Sports Preview: Everything you need to know for the weekend

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com


Commodores end season with playoff loss against FDR

Bayside fell one game short of reaching the championship game of the PSAL Varsity Bowl playoffs with a 32-20 loss to second-seeded FDR on Nov. 23 at Midwood High School. The Commodores finished the season with a 9-3 record and fell short in spite of two rushing touchdowns by senior Tyrell Plaza, who finished his career at the school with 30 touchdowns. Bayside has gone 29-14 over the last four seasons and loses 10 seniors.

St. John’s men head to MSG for tougher competition in NIT tip-off

St. John’s uses Madison Square Garden as its home court for many games, but this week, the arena will serve as a neutral site in the NIT season tip-off semifinals. St. John’s will face Big 10 foe Minnesota on Nov. 26 in the semifinals and will face No. 13 Gonzaga or Georgia. The Red Storm are 3-0 with wins over NJIT, Division II School Franklin Pierce and Long Island University.

St. John’s women faces in-state opposition

The St. John’s women’s basketball team has opened the season with an 11-point win at Yale and a 72-66 win over Florida in the home opener on Nov. 20. In the win over the Gators, Danaejah Grant and Aliyyah Handford had big games with 26 and 27 points respectively. The Red Storm were scheduled to visit Marist on Nov. 24 and host Binghamton on Nov. 29.

Cardozo’s Salnave gets scholarship from Rutgers

Guard Rashond Salnave will begin his junior year Dec. 2 against Thomas Edison and has started getting notice. In March, he had scholarship offers from Manhattan College and Fordham University. After helping the Judges win their first city championship since 1999, St. John’s, Seton Hall and Miami (Fla.) were among the schools to extend him offers. On Nov. 23, Salnave tweeted that Rutgers had offered him a scholarship. Salnave averaged 18 points last season and hit the game-winning free throws in the PSAL AA title game against Thomas Jefferson.

Former Christ the King standout Calhoun begins college career at Duke

Sierra Calhoun averaged 24 points in her senior season with Christ the King and was a McDonald’s All-American before heading to Duke. Calhoun’s brother, Omar, plays for Connecticut. With the seventh-ranked Blue Devils, Calhoun has started three games and is averaging seven points per game. Calhoun’s two games this week are Nov. 25 against Buffalo and Nov. 28 against Stony Brook.

Queens native starts strong for Marist men’s basketball team

Chavaughn Lewis is from Jamaica and went to high school at St. Mary’s of Manhasset. In his senior year, he averaged 23.9 points and reached the state federation title. Then he took his talents to Marist and was named captain of the Red Foxes as a junior last season. So far, he has averaged 19.5 points in two games this season. This week, Lewis and the Red Foxes will play three games in the Gulf Coast Showcase in Estero, Florida.

Former Holy Cross star has big game in Israel

Sylven Landesberg averaged 29.8 points as a senior for Holy Cross in 2007-08, and since graduating the Francis Lewis Boulevard school, he has gone a long way from Queens to the University of Virginia and then to Israel. Playing time has been difficult to come by for Landesberg with Maccabi Tel Aviv of the Israeli Premier League, but on Nov. 22, he scored 22 points against Limoges CSP, his highest number of points with the team.

York College men’s basketball opens league play

York College opened play in the CUNYAC conference on Nov. 25 by visiting Medgar Evers College in Brooklyn. York won the conference tournament last season and reached the second round of the Division III NCAA tournament. So far York has lost in overtime to McDaniel College and beaten Penn State-Harrisburg. Omar St. John, formerly of Van Buren High School, leads the team by averaging 14.5 points per game.



Jackson Heights primary care program aimed at low-income, immigrant women

| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Photos courtesy of Grameen PrimaCare

One nonprofit is looking to be the helping hand for women in Queens to lead healthier lives, no matter their immigration status.

Grameen PrimaCare, a New York City-based organization looking to provide high-quality, affordable and comprehensive access to healthcare, has opened its first primary care and health promotion program in Jackson Heights.

The program, called Grameen VidaSana, is open to women 18 years and older living in low-income, immigrant communities in Queens and who have no health insurance. The service at 82-11 37 Ave. opened in September.

“Our vision, our belief is that it’s unjust if all people don’t have equal access to affordable, quality healthcare, so that’s why we were born,” said Brooke Beardslee, executive director at Grameen PrimaCare. “We were born because it’s just clear that there are so many people in this country who, because of their documentation status, don’t have access to the affordable health care and we find that unacceptable.”

Grameen PrimaCare, is a sister organization of Grameen America, which was started in 2008 and is based on the structure of Grameen Bank, founded by Nobel Peace Prize recipient Muhammad Yunus in Bangladesh. Yunus offers microloans, training and support for women who do not otherwise have access to traditional banking structures. Grameen America opened its first branch in Jackson Heights.

For a monthly fee of $49, women using Grameen VidaSana receive unlimited access to a bilingual staff at the site that includes a doctor and four health coaches, also known as “compañeras de salud” in Spanish, who meet members first and then continue to work with them through their full membership.

Members also have access to group-based health workshops with a curriculum of many topics that the women themselves identified as concerns they need more information about. Some of these topics include diabetes management, hypertension management, obesity, stress, domestic violence, parenting and nutrition.

Program organizers have also been working with health care providers to find discounted and affordable referrals for members.

“Our practice is unique for many reasons: we are truly community based, we’re located in ground zero of the immigrant community,” Beardslee said. “[Jackson Heights] is ground zero for immigrant life and most likely [a large proportion of them are lacking documentation] and that’s who we are here for.”

According to Beardslee, the curriculum and overall program was designed after more than a year of working together with local community groups, such as Make the Road NY, and holding two health care fairs. During the fairs, they handed out 120-question questionnaires to all attendees. 

With their membership, women will also have access to classes such as Zumba, yoga, healthy cooking and ESL courses. For now these classes are free and open to the community as well. 

“We know that there has been such bad experience and mistrust, we know that the community is suspicious,” Beardslee said. “We want you to cross the threshold here and come meet us and then decide.”

Grameen VidaSana will be holding Giving Tuesday on Dec. 2 from 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. featuring free flu shot vouchers, blood pressure checks, healthy cooking demonstrations, an opportunity to meet the doctor and health team at the site, and many giveaways.

“We’re anticipating health literacy rising with the women who become members of Grameen VidaSana,” Beardslee said. “That through all this talking they’re just going to become so much more informed and feel in control with their health.”

Grameen VidaSana is currently open Monday 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Tuesday 1 to 5 p.m., Wednesday 3 to 7 p.m. and Friday 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.


Queens Sports Preview: Everything you need to know for the weekend

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of St. John's University


Commodores continue playoffs against FDR

Bayside High School is one game away from reaching the championship game of the PSAL Varsity Bowl playoffs and will face second-seeded FDR on Nov. 23 at noon at Midwood High School. The fourth-seeded Commodores opened the playoffs with a 26-6 victory over James Madison. Junior running back Marcus Watson had 111 yards while senior Tyrell Plaza rushed for two touchdowns and had eight tackles. One of Bayside’s two losses was a 16-6 defeat at FDR on Sept. 27.

St. John’s men looking for more complete performances as schedule gets tougher

Saying St. John’s 91-84 win over Division II school Franklin Pierce was uneven would be an understatement. The Red Storm improved to 2-0 on Nov. 17, but did so in a game where they trailed by seven at halftime and then began the second half with 21 straight points. D’Angelo Harrison had a career-high 31 points and 17 rebounds. The Red Storm faced Long Island University on Nov. 19 and will face Minnesota and, possibly, No. 13 Gonzaga in next week’s NIT Season Tip-Off at Madison Square Garden.

Former Holy Cross star helps Quinnipiac open season with victory

Evan Conti’s 1,120 points are the fifth highest in Holy Cross history. Since graduating from the school in 2011, he has taken his talents to Quinnipiac in Hamden, Conn. Conti began his senior season by totaling 13 points, six assists and six rebounds in an 88-85 double overtime thriller over Yale. Conti and his team faced La Salle on Nov. 18 and will visit Albany on Nov. 22.

St. John’s women’s basketball faces Florida in home opener

The St. John’s women’s basketball team opened its season by getting a career-high 30 points from Danejah Grant in a 61-50 win at Yale on Nov. 15. On Nov. 20, St. John’s opens its home schedule against Florida and will be facing the Gators for the second straight season. Last year, St. John’s fell behind by 18 at halftime in a 72-68 loss in Gainesville.

Former Red Storm forward Sampson could make pro debut at MSG

Jakarr Sampson averaged 12.8 points last season for St. John’s and decided to declare for the NBA draft. Although he was undrafted, he made the Philadelphia 76ers opening night roster. So far, Sampson is averaging 2.3 points and has appeared in nine games, although his playing time has been limited so far. The 76ers are winless (0-10) through Nov. 17 and will face the Knicks at Madison Square Garden on the night of Nov. 22.

Queens College players make East Coast Conference honor roll

Queens College men’s basketball opened the season with an 83-77 loss to Goldey-Beacom in Wilmington, Del., on Nov. 14. In the loss, senior guard Jeremiah Mordi had 32 points on 10-of-17 shooting and was named to the East Coast Conference honor roll. Mordi, however, was 8-of-28 from the field as the Knights fell to 0-3 with double digit losses to University of the Sciences and Georgian Court. Queens will resume its schedule on Dec. 1 at Adelphi. The women’s team opened the season with a pair of close games, a 60-58 loss to St. Michaels and a 61-59 win over Franklin Pierce. Forward Madison Rowland had a double-double in the win and was named to the East Coast Conference honor roll. The Lady Knights continue play on Nov. 19 at Dominican College.

Holy Cross begins hockey season

Holy Cross will begin its hockey season on Nov. 23 in Brooklyn against St. Joseph’s of Staten Island. In their first year competing in the Catholic League’s A Division, the Knights finished fourth in the Catholic League’s A Division at 9-4-2 and then lost their first round best-of-three series to Msgr. Farrell of Staten Island. Holy Cross won both meetings with St. Joseph’s by a combined 10-1 margin.

Boxing comes to Queens

Though the main event in boxing is Long Island native Chris Algieri’s challenge of Manny Pacquiao for the WBO welterweight title on Nov. 22 in Macau China, fight fans can get their fix on Nov. 21 at International Fight Night at Resorts World Casino in Jamaica. On the nine-fight card run by New Legend Boxing, there are three fighters with connections to Queens. Allan Phelan of Astoria by way of County Kildare in Ireland will fight in a six-round junior lightweight bout. Featherweight Jose Miguel De La Rosa, a Dominican Republic native living in Queens and Jamaica middleweight Devaun Lee will have four-round fights.


Identify this place in Queens

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com


Do you know where in Queens this photo was taken? Guess by commenting below! The answer will be revealed next week.

Last week’s answer to “Identify this Place”: The view from The Garden at Studio Square Flowers-on-Roof1-624x416




Councilman promises to fund purchase of Fresh Meadows colonial cemetery

| ejankiewicz@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Landmarks Preservation Commission

Fresh Meadows Councilman Rory Lancman pledged to fully fund the purchase of a historical cemetery on 182nd Avenue from the current private owner that has no intention of preserving the plot of land.

“Buying the cemetery is the easy part,” Lancman said about the Brinckerhoff Cemetery. “We need to make sure that an organization with the infrastructure can shoulder the responsibility of upkeeping and maintaining the cemetery.”

The 18th century cemetery was designated a landmark in 2012, thwarting the efforts of the owner, Linda Cai, to develop the land into housing or commercial property.

Lancman, whose coverage area includes Fresh Meadows, said that his office was in the process of looking for an organization that would be able to take care of the colonial cemetery.

The Friends of the The Brinckerhoff Colonial Cemetery, a nonprofit, helped the site gain the landmark status and is in the process of raising money to buy the cemetery. But so far, Lancman hasn’t offered to buy the property for the group because he isn’t sure if the organization

“I’m not going to make the decision unilaterally,” Lancman said. “We need to sit down with the community and figure it out.”


Dairy Queen arrives in Queens

| ctumola@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Angy Altamirano

Updated Wednesday, Nov. 19, 12:37 p.m.

Dairy Queen opened in Corona this month, bringing its famous soft-serve treats back to the borough for the first time in decades.

The DQ Grill & Chill Restaurant, at 37-39 Junction Blvd., is one of four locations in the city, joining DQs in the Bronx, Staten Island and Manhattan, which just debuted in May.

At least one Dairy Queen existed in the borough prior to the 1980s, according to corporate headquarters, but the Corona eatery is currently the only location in Queens.

The restaurant serves more than just dessert. As its name suggests, it has both a “grill” and “chill” side. Its menu features familiar sweets, including Blizzards, and lunch and dinner items, such as burgers, sandwiches and salads.

Since the Dairy Queen opened on Nov. 11, everything on the menu has been selling, according to assistant manager Gary Holmes.

“Once you order something for dinner, you’re going to have something for dessert,” he said.

Hungry diners looking for a deal can enjoy Dairy Queen’s “$5 Buck Lunch,” which includes crispy fries, a drink and a sundae for dessert.

A week after its opening, which was first reported by DNAinfo, the crowds have been decent, but the restaurant would like to see more customers.

“We are new to the area. We’ve been pretty good,” Holmes said. “But we could always do better.”


Preservation group struggles to raise money for historical cemetery in Fresh Meadows

| ejankiewicz@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Landmarks Preservation Commission

A preservation group is trying to save a colonial-era burial ground in Fresh Meadows from fading away.

The Brinckerhoff Cemetery was designated a landmark in 2012 by the city. But the small plot of land is privately owned by Linda Cai.

“If we didn’t fight for the cemetery this could have been developed and the grounds desecrated,” said Yolanda Dela Cruz-Gallagher, president of Friends of the Brinckerhoff Colonial Cemetery. “And we could have lost the historical essence of our forefather.”

Dela Cruz-Gallagher and her preservation organization are raising money to buy the property. The current owner is asking for $150,000.

“We have no money,” Dela Cruz-Gallagher said. “And so we’re asking the public for support.”

Dela Cruz-Gallagher and other Queens historical groups believe there are over 70 tombstones in the cemetery, but none of them are visible due to the overgrowth of weeds and a lack of maintenance.

Surveys of the area are prohibited since the cemetery is private property, so no one is certain about the conditions of the tombstones and other historical artifacts. The 18th-century graveyard is named after a prominent immigrant family from Holland that settled in Fresh Meadows.

“I believe that the property would be in better hands with the Friends of the Brinckerhoff Cemetery than the current owner,” said Mitchell Grubler, chair of the Queens Preservation Council. “It’s a property that’s had a lot of invasive growth, vegetation. Over the course of time, that needs to be managed.”

The Queens Preservation Council doesn’t have any plans to financially support Friends of the Brinckerhoff Colonial Cemetery. But Grubler said that doesn’t mean they won’t help in the future.

In 2012, when the site was designated as a historical landmark, former City Councilman James Gennaro lobbied hard to win the site’s landmark status, according to earlier reports.

Gennaro also said that a nonprofit group with the financial ability should buy the property. While Dela Cruz-Gallagher’s preservation group is a nonprofit, they aren’t close to the $150,000 needed to buy the property.

“These are the people who fought side by side with George Washington. It has a lot of historical significance,” Dela Cruz-Gallagher said. “We need to get this property as soon as possible before everything there is lost.”


Queens Sports Preview: Everything you need to know for the weekend

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com



Red Devils open PSAL playoffs

Flushing High School will open the PSAL playoffs Saturday at noon by hosting Brooklyn’s South Shore High School. Led by senior running back D’Andre Sapp, who rushed for 842 yards, the Red Devils earned the seventh seed with an 8-2 record. Sapp had 135 yards and ran for two touchdowns last week in a 48-7 rout of Campus Magnet. The Red Devils were the fourth seed last season and beat Curtis and New Dorp before a 55-7 loss to top-seeded Lincoln in the semifinals.

Commodores look to make up for last week’s loss in PSAL’s Varsity Bowl

Bayside High School will host James Madison in the PSAL’s Varsity Bowl Saturday at noon. The Commodores finished the regular season with an 8-2 record and earned the fourth seed. Bayside ended the regular season on a down note with a 40-14 home loss to top seed McKee last Sunday in a game where it was outgained 468-93. Earlier this season, Bayside posted a 22-18 victory over Madison when Tyrell Plaza had 179 yards and two touchdowns. Bayside is seeded fourth for the second straight season. Last year, the Commodores routed Staten Island’s Petrides High School 52-20 before losing to McKee in the second round.

Bayside girls volleyball returns to playoffs

Bayside’s girls volleyball team returns after a one-year absence as the fifth seed against No. 28 Environmental Studies. The Commodores were 10-0 during the regular season and won nine of 10 games in straight sets. Bayside is led by senior setter Mariel Medina, who compiled 150 assists during the regular season. If the team wins, it will face Van Buren, and if they win that game, will face either New Utrecht or Lab Museum.

Francis Lewis volleyball to open playoffs against Bryant

Francis Lewis earned the eighth seed in the volleyball playoffs by going 8-2 in the regular season and will open the playoffs against No. 25 Bryant. The Patriots were an eighth seed two years ago and advanced to the quarterfinals before losing to top seed Susan Wagner. Should the Patriots advance they will face the winner of the Flushing-Long Island City contest.

Flushing Red Devils to start playoffs with highest seed in four years

Flushing High School will also open the playoffs Wednesday as the ninth seed against No. 24 Long Island City. The Red Devils went unbeaten (10-0) in winning the Queens A North/East title and have their highest seed over the last four years. Long Island City finished the regular season with a 7-3 record that was good for second place in the Queens A West Division.

Townsend Harris and Jamaica neck in neck as playoffs begin

Townsend Harris earned the 16th seed and will face off against No. 17 Jamaica in the opening round of the volleyball playoffs. Townsend Harris finished 6-4 and in third in Queens A East and that included two victories over defending champion Cardozo. Jamaica was 7-3 and finished in second place in Queens A North East. Townsend Harris lost in the second round to Bronx Science last year while Jamaica lost to JFK in the first round. The winner will face top-seeded Brooklyn Tech.

Red Storm to open season against Yale

The St. John’s women’s basketball team will open its season Saturday afternoon with a visit to Yale. The Red Storm have been to five straight NCAA tournaments and were picked second in the preseason Big East coaches poll. St. John’s also received seven points in the preseason AP poll and 16 in the USA Today/Coaches poll. The Red Storm returns with its two top scorers from last season, Aliyyah Handford and Danaejah Grant.

Queens College Knights looks to end losing streak

Queens College will open its men’s basketball season Friday at Goldey-Beacom in Wilmington, Delaware and will try to rebound from a disappointing 9-18 season. The Knights lost their first 12 games before finishing 9-6 over the final 15 and will look to end a string of four straight losing seasons. The women’s team will begin the season against St. Michael’s in Vermont in the Doubletree Tip-off Classic.