Starting Monday, July 21, there will be service disruptions on the E, F, M and R lines between the hours of 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. in Queens and Manhattan for four consecutive weeknights, as part of the MTA’s Fastrack maintenance program:
E service will be suspended between Roosevelt Avenue and World Trade Center.
F service will be suspended between Roosevelt Avenue and 21 Street-Queensbridge.
M service will end early between 71 Avenue and Essex Street each night.
R service will end early between 71 Avenue and Whitehall Street each night.
Take the 7 between Manhattan and 74 St-Roosevelt Avenue or Queensboro Plaza.
Take the N between Manhattan and Queensboro Plaza.
In Manhattan, transfer at 5 Avenue/42 Street-Bryant Park 7/D/F, Times Square-42 Street/Port Authority 7/A, and 34 Street-Herald Square D/F/N.
Take the R between Queens Plaza and 71 Avenue. When R service ends, E trains run local between Queens Plaza and 71 Avenue until 10 p.m. After 10 PM, take the E Local between Roosevelt Avenue and 71 Avenue.
In Manhattan along 8th Avenue, take the A Local or C instead of the E.
Along 53 Street, use the D or nearby 6 and N stations instead.
Free shuttle buses run local between Queensboro Plaza and 74 Street-Roosevelt Avenue making station stops at Queens Plaza, 36 Street, Steinway Street, 46 Street, Northern Boulevard, and 65 Street.
In Queens, transfer between shuttle buses and trains at 74 Street-Roosevelt Avenue 7/E/F or Queensboro Plaza 7/N.
The founders of a new walking food tour, which is making its start in Long Island City, are looking to prove that Queens is the “king of the boroughs.”
Queens natives Richard Mumith and Sergey Kadinsky started the company Locals Finds Queens Food Tours to share their love for the diverse borough and bring tourists across the East River.
“We essentially started up for the tourists but now a lot of natives are becoming part of it too,” Mumith said. “We now want Queens locals to really see what is in their backyard.”
The three-hour tours, which began July 13 and take place every Sunday, look to combine the history, culture and food of the borough in what Mumith calls a “non-touristy ‘off the beaten’ experience.”
Every Sunday eight participants, who are told the meeting point after purchasing tickets, get together and sample food from six local Long Island City establishments, while also being given a tour by Kadinsky, who is a licensed tour guide, on the history and present details on the western Queens neighborhood.
The stops of the tour include Manducatis Rustica, Woodbines Craft Kitchen, Sweetleaf, Alobar, Rockaway Brewing Company and Sage General Store.
Mumith said the tours are starting in Long Island City because it is close to Manhattan and also has an “amazing industrial manufacturing history and artistic presence.”
“We’re really here to create a relationship with the communities,” Mumith said.
However, Mumith hopes to expand the tours into full weekends in Long Island City and later move them further into other Queens neighborhood such as Astoria and Flushing.
“We’re here to stay. We’re here to do all the great borough of Queens and each neighborhood presents something unique,” he said.
The Briarwood resident is even challenging the other four boroughs to try and beat the diversity and distinct cuisines offered in Queens.
“What people don’t know, when it comes to the culinary scene, Queens is the king of the boroughs,” Mumith said.
Tickets for the tours are $56 for adults and $42 for children 12 and under. The price of tickets include the tour, which begins every Sunday at 11 a.m., food tastings and an exclusive brochure featuring a map of the neighborhood, list of attractions, other restaurant recommendations and list of things to do.
The free event will feature stories from three speakers who will share their journeys coming to Queens, music inspired by the borough and an open-mic session for audience members to also talk about their Queens-themed experiences.
Bridget Bartolini, founder of Five Boro Story Project and a native Queens resident, said she hopes the series, which is expected to take place every three months at Terraza 7, will bring people together and create connections within the community.
“I really hope that people at the event will get to know each other,” Bartolini said. “I want to create an opportunity for people to get to know their neighbors. Come as strangers and leave as neighbors.”
When it came to picking a venue for the series, Bartolini said Terraza 7, located between the neighborhoods of Elmhurst and Jackson Heights, was a “special spot” because it serves as more than just a bar; it is also a cultural venue.
Bartolini said she encourages people to contact the group if they are interested on being featured as a speaker.
The July 20 launch event, which begins at 6 p.m., will include speakers Susan Peret, Angy Rivera and Affandy Yacoob, and finish off with music by Nicholas Howard, singer-songwriter and music producer, and Danon Singh, East Elmhurst lawyer and MC.
The Queens Documented series was also produced by community-based organization SEVA and commissioned by nonprofit The Laundromat Project’s “Create Change” program.
Foodies, get ready: a two-day international Queens food tour is coming to the borough thanks to a successful Kickstarter campaign.
Astoria resident Adam Edwards turned to the online crowdfunding site last month in hopes of raising enough money to turn his project called “The Silk Road & Spice Route of Queens” into a reality, The Queens Courier first reported.
“I always wanted to do something with food that really connects with people, and Queens is a unique food destination in itself,” Edwards previously told The Courier.
Edwards’ campaign came to an end on July 15 and raised a total of $2,175, surpassing his goal of $2,000.
The idea came to Edwards, originally from Pittsburgh, upon exploring Astoria and seeing the different restaurants featuring international cuisines, such as Mombar located at 25-22 Steinway St.
During the food tour, which will take place on August 10 and 17, Edwards said he hopes to highlight the borough’s diversity and modern versions of food that could be found along the ancient Silk Road and spice routes that connected Europe, Asia and Africa.
Participants will be able to ride a trolley from midtown Manhattan, at 8th Avenue between 54th and 55th streets, into Queens.
“Learn about the history of Queens and the lands where people immigrated from to call New York City home as we try authentic food from the old world right in our backyard,” said Edwards on the food tour’s official website.
The first Sunday, August 10, starting at noon, the tour will focus on the Spice Route of Queens dining at restaurants specializing in Italian, Egyptian, South Indian, Malaysian and Cantonese cuisines.
The following week, participants will explore the Silk Road tasting food from Greece, the Middle East, Uzbekistan, Afghanistan and Central/Western China.
Tickets are currently on sale for $150 as an early-bird special, up to 10 days before the events, and the full price of the tickets is $200 per day.
All proceeds from the food tour will go toward supporting the nonprofit Upwardly Global, for which Edwards has organized fundraisers over the past few years.
Angy Rivera, a formerly undocumented immigrant, knew which words she wanted to let out when she was invited to take the stage at Flushing Town Hall last month.
In her original poem, “Community Not Condominiums,” the 23-year-old Flushing resident describes in detail the communities of Jackson Heights, Flushing and Corona through following a food vendor named “Doña María.”
Doña María is up before the sun rises Moon shining on her face she gets ready for the morning commute It’s her job to feed others Moon shining on her face ella empieza a cocinar arepas, tamales, café y chocolate Arepas made with corn and cheese They start to melt as soon as they touch your mouth.
“At first I thought, ‘Oh wait, what if someone doesn’t understand that,” Rivera said about writing the poem in both Spanish and English. “But that’s how it is here in Queens.”
The college junior, who is studying culture and deviance with a minor in human services at John Jay College, said she felt pride when writing the poem for being part of “such a beautiful community” and remembering all the great details of each neighborhood. Yet, she said she also felt sadness when thinking about the idea of growing up and facing changes.
How will Doña María sell her tamales, arepas, café y chocolate When the streets becomes businesses she cannot pronounce Will her café con leche compete with Starbucks? These signs of a cleaner and safer Queens erase the resiliency already here We weren’t dirty to begin with Will her house stand untouched during gentrification?
“That’s what I wanted to make sure came across, as much as it’s a celebration of Queens, on the flipside it’s about things we can lose,” she said.
This wasn’t the first time Rivera’s words reached a much larger audience. In 2009 she joined the nonprofit New York State Youth Leadership Council, the first volunteer undocumented youth and membership led organization started in 2007, as an intern.
The Colombian-native, who was undocumented for 19 years and has recently obtained a visa, went on to create a national undocumented youth advice column in 2010 called “Ask Angy.”
“It was the first time I met with other immigrant young people that wanted to change things that they saw unjust,” said Rivera, who immigrated with her family to the United States just one week shy of her fourth birthday. “Through them I grew as a person.”
Now as a core member of the organization, she helps out in the media/outreach and arts/self-expression programs. Through her weekly column, she said she gets people writing to her from all around the nation about different subjects undocumented youths face, such as driving without a license and deferred action.
Although she said it is tricky at times because she doesn’t always have answers, especially when it comes to legal topics, she said the column has helped her learn different laws depending on states.
“Being involved helped me become more open about a lot of things and helped me learn a lot of new stuff,” she said. “It’s been very healing to meet other people in the same situation as you. It’s always been nice to have a group to understand.”
Continuing her involvement in activism, Rivera has also become part of Queens Neighborhoods United, a coalition created to build power and develop leadership in Corona, Elmhurst and Jackson Heights. The group recently has gone around cleaning the streets down Roosevelt Avenue.
Rivera now plans to recite “Community Not Condominiums” at a new quarterly series called “Queens Documented,” which launches on July 20 at Terraza 7 located at 40-19 Gleane St. in Elmhurst and features stories and music from people who migrated to Queens.
Adam Edwards is turning to Kickstarter to make his idea of bringing a two-day international food tour to Queens a reality.
Edwards’ project, called “The Silk Road & Spice Route of Queens,” hopes to highlight the borough’s diversity and modern versions of the foods that could be found along the ancient Silk Road and spice routes that connected Europe, Asia and Africa.
“I always wanted to do something with food that really connects with people, and Queens is a unique food destination in itself,” said Edwards, who calls himself a “history buff.”
The idea came to him upon exploring Astoria and seeing the different restaurants featuring international cuisines, such as Mombar located at 25-22 Steinway St.
“Walking through the beautiful entrance and tasting the amazing food by Chef Moustafa El Sayed really transported me back to ancient times and I want to share that feeling with others,” he said.
The Astoria resident, originally from Pittsburgh, said the biggest challenge is getting people to support his campaign without knowing an exact date of the tour.
The money donated to the Kickstarter will go toward a shuttle bus, which will serve as transportation between restaurants, and for prizes and reservations at the restaurants.
If he reaches the Kickstarter campaign’s goal of $2,000 by July 15, Edwards said, the two-day tour, slated to happen the second weekend of August, will cover five restaurants per day. The estimated price per day is $200.
The Saturday of the tour would be dedicated to the spice route, concentrating on Malaysian, Southern Indian and Egyptian cuisines. On Sunday, participants will go down the Silk Road, tasting food from Uzbekistan, western China and more.
“Queens is the most diverse place on earth,” Edwards said. “Certainly in the United States it’s the most diverse. I hope people can travel a little bit in their own backyard.”
Additional funds will also go toward supporting the nonprofit Upwardly Global, for which Edwards has organized fundraisers over the past few years.
Instead of sitting in air conditioning, try cooling off in one of the borough’s free outdoor pools starting Friday, June 27. All locations are open from 11:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. (with a break for cleaning between 3 and 4 p.m). The season ends September 1.
Astoria Park 19th Street and 23rd Drive Olympic-sized Pool
Fisher Pool 99th Street and 32nd Avenue Outdoor Intermediate Pool, Outdoor Wading Pool
Fort Totten 338 Story Avenue Outdoor Intermediate Pool, Outdoor Wading Pool, Outdoor Diving Pool
Liberty Park Pool 173rd Street and 106th Avenue Outdoor Intermediate Pool, Outdoor Wading Pool
Marie Curie Park 211th Street and 46th Avenue Outdoor Mini Pool
P.S. 10 45th Street and 30th Road Outdoor Mini Pool
P.S. 186 Playground Little Neck Parkway & 72nd Avenue Outdoor Mini Pool
Windmuller Park 54th Street and 39th Road Outdoor Mini Pool
The first book of the series debuted Sunday at the World’s Fair Anniversary Festival. It takes these young world travelers back in time to experience the site of the 1939 and 1964 World’s Fairs, the Queens County Farm, before it was a museum, and a Civil War fort in Fort Totten.
“You pick up books in the bookstore and you are learning about the Statue of Liberty and Empire State Building, but never about the structures in Queens,” Tsavaris-Lecourezos said.
The concept of the “Young World Travelers” series began nine years ago when Tsavaris-Lecourezos gave birth to her daughter Katerina, the year after marrying her high school sweetheart. Together with her husband, Constantinos (Gus) P. Lecourezos she began to come up an initial concept of writing a movie script that would be educational for children and revolve around traveling to Greece.
After realizing the large costs that involved turning the script into a film, Tsavaris-Lecourezos decided to create a children’s book. She wrote four books in total with the characters traveling to places in Egypt, England, Greece and New York.
In 2009, her husband passed away and Tsavaris-Lecourezos moved to Tarpon Springs, Florida with her daughter.
At the end of last year a friend suggested she take her concept to a publisher and when Tsavaris-Lecourezos approached publisher thewordverve inc. her ideas were accepted.
“It was all falling into place, I had no idea,” she said. “I’m rolling with it and I’m really excited.”
The “Young World Travelers” series is dedicated to Tsavaris-Lecourezos’ husband and mother. In the book the children receive a magical crystal globe, which allows them to time travel, from Mrs. Eva, who was named and inspired by Tsavaris-Lecourezos’ mother.
The 43-page book’s illustrator Rick Sanders is also a Queens native. Though Tsavaris-Lecourezos and him first met through thewordverve, they were coincidentally born in the same hospital.
During the World’s Fair Anniversary Festival, Tsavaris-Lecourezos held two readings to share the book with visitors of all ages.
“I was so honored to have been invited to such an event,” she said. “It was amazing and an opportunity of a lifetime to be able to debut my book there.”
To preorder “Young World Travelers and the Magical Crystal Globe,” click here.
Actor Alex Webb has gone behind the camera to write, direct and produce award-winning films. Now, he is turning to Kickstarter to get his new film rolling.
The Jackson Heights resident has worked with actors such Meryl Streep, Kevin Spacey and Ben Affleck and has appeared in the Netflix series “House of Cards” and HBO’s “Boardwalk Empire.”
Aside from acting, Webb began working on film production with his first picture “The Girl in 2C,” which received a silver medal at WorldFest, an international indie film festival in Houston. His most recent short film “Hove (The Wind)” received the Panavision New Filmmaker Award and was selected for several international film festivals.
“The interesting thing I didn’t realize is that all along I had writing and directing right in my pocket,” Webb said. “I was much happier when those times came to be creative and start creating your own work.”
Webb decided the next step in his production career would be to create a full-length feature and came up with his newest thriller and dark comedy flick called “To The Flame.”
“[I wanted to] try to make a story that is super intriguing, weird and surprising and — on the production end — simple,” Webb said. “Make [a film] that would really lend itself to a micro-budget.”
On May 7, Webb created a 30-day Kickstarter project to help raise $25,000 in funds to make his feature film a reality. The money raised would go toward production equipment and hiring the remaining cast and crew members, as well as helping to keep location and travel needs to a minimum.
“The great thing about Kickstarter is you are raising awareness about your project before even starting it,” Webb said. “You get these people already hooked on the project and you’re getting an audience before it even starts.”
The film, which already has Oscar-winning actress Olympia Dukakis and actor Bob Balaban slotted for cameos, was inspired by the works of directors Alfred Hitchcock and David Lynch. It follows two college students, Kyle and Penny, and their interaction with two neighbors, played by Webb and his wife Shirleyann Kaladjian, for a school assignment. The project then takes the students into the couple’s “dark and twisted world,” Webb said.
Shooting for the film is expected to begin in early July, with some scenes possibly shot in Queens, and a release date is slated for late this year or early 2015.
To watch a teaser for “To The Flame” and donate to the Kickstarter, which ends June 6, click here.
The 12th Annual Top Women in Business networking and awards event on Tuesday, May 20, will honor influential women in business in Queens.
The event will celebrate women of Queens finance, healthcare, education and entrepreneurship whose major achievements and participation in community activities has helped the borough grow. Along with recognizing notable Queens’s figures, the “Women in Business” event also provides one of the top networking forums in the borough.
The event will also honor Greg Kelly, co-host of Fox News’s “Good Day New York,” as Best Man of the Year. Queensborough President Melinda Katz will be attending the ceremony as well. “Greg Kelly is one of the most beloved, interesting and powerful newscasters in television,” said Victoria Schneps, publisher and CEO of The Queens Courier. “We are delighted to honor the highest-rated morning TV personality as our Best Man of the Year.”
The event will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. at Terrace on the Park, 52-11 111 St., Flushing Meadows Park, Queens. The evening will begin with an Expo and Networking portion followed by the Dinner awards ceremony.
This years honorees:
LEADERSHIP IN EDUCATION AWARD
Sharon DeVivo President, Vaughn College
LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD
Dr. Jasmin Moshirpur : Dean/Medical Director, Elmhurst Hospital
Gina Battagliola, Project Manager : JFK International Air Terminal
Kimberly Benn, Advertising Account Executive: DeSales Media Group
Clara Berg, Service Specialist: YAI Services
Marizen Bernales, RN/CEO: Atlantic Dialysis
Dr. Sabra Brock, Interim Dean: Touro Grad School of Business
A new Fox show, called “Weird Loners,” will use Queens as its backdrop.
The single-camera comedy, scheduled for 2015, focuses on “four single 30-something underdogs who are unexpectedly thrust into one another’s lives and form an unlikely bond in a Queens townhouse.” The show, which is still early in production, places the home in Ridgewood.
From writer Michael J. Weithorn (“The King of Queens”) and director Jake Kasdan (“New Girl”), the show stars Becki Newton (“Ugly Betty”), Zachary Knighton (“Happy Endings”), Nate Torrence (“Hello Ladies”) and newcomer Meera Khumbhani.
Newton plays Caryn Goldfarb: “A cute, but high-strung dental hygienist whose romantic life, unfortunately, is dictated by the love-crazed, ultra-romantic 13-year-old barricaded inside the control room of her brain. Each time a handsome new man crosses her field of vision, infatuation and extreme over-eagerness take over, and she inevitably winds up back at square one – single and not getting any younger.”
Knighton plays Stosh Lewandoski: Described as “handsome, charming and whip-smart,” he’s a “serial seducer who has never been able to maintain an intimate relationship with a woman for very long – a couple of hours, usually. When Stosh’s shenanigans result in him losing his corporate condo, he winds up moving in with his cousin Eric.”
Torrence plays Eric Lewandoski: “A sweet, odd man-child, whose “adult life has consisted of living at home with elderly parents and working as a toll collector on the Queensboro Bridge. After both of his parents pass away, he finds himself cast adrift in the world for the first time.”
Meera Khumbhani plays Zara Sandhu: “Drop-dead gorgeous, mysterious and ethereal, Zara is a lifelong heartbreaker who’s only capable of living one way – ‘in the moment.’ Men and women fall in love with her on a regular basis, and she often reciprocates their feelings with great passion, until… she doesn’t.”
The hammer-wielding robber wanted in three attacks, including an assault on a woman in Queens, has been charged in connection to the two of the incidents, police said.
Anthony Coward, 28, who police identified as the suspect in the robberies over the weekend, allegedly approached a 23-year-old man and struck him in the head with a hammer on May 4, at about 11:00 a.m., at the Rockaway Avenue A/C subway station at Fulton Street in Brooklyn. He then continued to beat the rest of his body with the hammer before he fled with the victim’s wallet, police said. The victim was taken to Brookdale Hospital and released.
He then approached a 32-year-old man, who was trying to buy a MetroCard at the same Rockaway Avenue subway station in Brooklyn at about 9:20 a.m. Wednesday, and struck him on the head with a hammer and demanded money, cops said. Once the victim handed over the money, Coward fled. The victim was taken to Brookdale Hospital and released.
Coward has been charged with robbery in both of the Brooklyn attacks, according to police.
In another attack that is believed to be connected to the other incidents, a 26-year-old reportedly pregnant woman was robbed and assaulted on the morning of March 5 on Pershing Crescent in Briarwood, cops said. The suspect came up to her from behind and struck her on the head with a silver hammer and fled with her handbag. The victim was taken to Jamaica Hospital in stable condition. The investigation is still ongoing into that robbery, officials said.
Queens Borough President Melinda Katz and Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. are wagering an assortment of foods, each from their respective boroughs, based on the results of the four-game series taking place from Monday, May 12 through Thursday, May 15, the two announced Sunday.
If the Mets win more games than the Yankees, then Diaz will send Katz a sample tray of empanadas from Babalu on East Tremont Road and a dozen cannolis from Egidio Pastry Shop, located in Belmont, the Bronx’s Little Italy.
But if the Yankees win, Katz will send Diaz a tray of sandwiches from Leo’s Latticini, also known as Mama’s of Corona. For dessert, Katz will also send pastries from the Omonia Café in Astoria.
“Queens offers an incredibly diverse array of cuisine and has some of the best restaurants in the city, so Borough President Diaz is in for a real treat if the Yankees manage to win the series,” Katz said. “But I fully expect the Mets will win and that I will be enjoying some delicious food from the Bronx.”
Both stakes will be paid out if the two New York baseball teams split the four game series 2-2.
“We have great culinary options in The Bronx, so a Mets victory would certainly be a treat for Borough President Katz,” Diaz said. “But the Yankees are the greatest franchise in baseball history, and I’m sure their decades of dominance will continue through this week.”