Tag Archives: resorts world casino

Playing the networking game at Resorts World Casino


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Gambling and networking are normally two words that don’t go together, but at the Promote & Play Networking Business Card Exchange, they do.

“It’s a very reasonable night out with the opportunity of meeting some exciting business professionals,” said Michael Addeo, Jr., chair of Resources Networking Group, which is hosting the event at Resorts World Casino New York City on Thursday, October 25 from 5:30 to 8 p.m.

Addeo’s business, Ridgewood Office Products Center, is also one of the sponsors, along with The Queens Courier, Capital One Bank, Royal Waste Services, Cross County Savings Bank, Sito Business Advisors, Kelair, Inc., Acme American Environmental Co., V.P. Media Inc., and Vulcan Business Solutions.

For just $20 attendees will get a $10 gaming credit and access to the casino’s games. There will also be free parking, hot food and refreshments, as well as a cash bar.

But before the gambling begins, there will be networking — something Resources Networking Group knows well.

In its second decade, “the group is like having a second silent sales person on the road,” said Addeo.

Representing an array of industries, from banking, real estate and law to plumbing, office furniture design and elevator sales and service, the group meets every other Wednesday morning at North Shore Towers, where members share lead information. Anywhere from 60 to 75 leads are exchanged each meeting, said Addeo.

The group only holds special events, such as Promote & Play, a few times a year.

Though it’s the perfect chance for those interested in joining Resources Networking Group, the event is also for anyone who wants to network while having fun at one of Queens’ newest attractions.

“There are many opportunities out there. By networking you create new opportunities,” said Addeo.

For more info or to RSVP, call 718-386-3266 or email rngleads@gmail.com.

Queens events this weekend


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

File photo

Saturday, October 6

10 a.m. – 11 a.m., Blessing of the animals in honor of St. Francis at Grace Episcopal Church in Whitestone. All pets are welcome to attend with their families.

10 a.m. – 4 p.m., St. Paul’s International Lutheran Church will be holding its sixth annual International Fall Fair in Floral Park. There will be a free blessing of the pets, free entertainment, free games and a moonbounce for the kids. Flu shots, vendors, pumpkin painting, a Verizon Fios booth and food will be available as well.

11 a.m. – 4 p.m.,  Pony rides, pumpkin decorating, face-painting, balloon animals and more at the Fall Family Flea Market Festival at the Bay Terrace Country Club.

11 a.m. – 2 p.m., The 34th Annual Queens Columbus Day Parade in Astoria will begin at Kaufman Astoria Studios and end at Astoria Boulevard and 31st Street.  NYPD Chief Diana Pizzuti will serve as grand marshal.

Noon – 7 p.m., Oktoberfest in Sunnyside Gardens Park will include face-painting, live music, arts & crafts, jewelry, homemade food and merchandise and pumpkins, pumpkins, pumpkins.

Noon – 3 p.m., Learn to prepare a Puerto Rican pastelon (Shepherd’s Pie) and enjoy the sounds of Argentine tango  and Spanish “cuadro flamenco” at the free Hispanic Heritage Festival in Corona.

1 p.m. – 3 p.m., Enjoy crafts, stories and learn about the history of tea at Tea Time at King Manor. Bring your favorite stuffed animal or doll for this fun afternoon.

Sunday, October 7

11 a.m. – 5 p.m., Walk Now for Autism Speaks is a fun-filled, family friendly event and is our single most powerful force to fund vital research that will lead us to the answers we need.

11 a.m. – noon, Chef Alex Privilegi of Il Toscano Restaurant returns for a cooking demonstration featuring locally grown ingredients from the Douglaston Greenmarket.

Noon – 3 p.m., The Dominican Day Parade will march down Northern Boulevard from 69th Street through 86th Street.

1 p.m. – 3 p.m., Stop by Hallets Cove for your last chance to kayak/canoe. Free and no experience necessary and all ages are welcome (under 18 must be accompanied by parent) Wear clothing and shoes ready to get wet.

2 p.m. – 5 p.m., Resorts World Casino New York City’s Oktoberfest is an abbreviated visit to Munich. Complete with an oompah band and specialty fare including Jagar Schnitzel with braised red cabbage, warm German potato salad and Kringle. Enjoy the essence of Germany.

3 p.m. – 5 p.m., You don’t meet Pat Cooper, you experience him. Whether sharing his views on kids, politics or popular celebrities, his no-holds-barred discussion on his life (and everyone else’s), will have you rolling in the aisles.

FDNY boxers take the ring for charity


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Terence M. Cullen

This time, instead of their gear, they donned boxing gloves.

Several FDNY firefighters took part in the “Battle of the Badges” on Friday, September 14 at Resorts World Casino New York City — the first-ever boxing match at a city casino.

The action in the ring started with the first match of amateur boxers Ali Salem and Omawaie Adewale.

The night really began, however, when Todd Velten, a firefighter in Lower Manhattan, took off his robe — fashioned after an FDNY service jacket. Every blow from the boxer resulted in cheers from his fellow firefighters. Nearly every spectator from the FDNY became a coach, yelling advice for Velten as he took on opponent Angel Castro.

When the referee lifted Velten’s arm to officiate his victory, the cheers from the scores of firefighters and FDNY supporters could be heard throughout the third floor of the Racino.

Velten’s match was followed by super heavyweight and fellow FDNY John Phillips, who faced John Rosales from Universal Boxing Organization. Though the two tired as the match went on, the energy from the crowd only continued to grow.

Eddie Brown, the Bronx trustee for the Uniformed Firefighters Association, sat ringside and was one of those cheering on the FDNY boxers. A former fighter and trainer on the FDNY team, Brown said it was amazing how dedicated some blaze battlers were to another kind of fight during their downtime.

“These guys work hard,” Brown said. “They’re going to fight fires, and then they’re training on their days off.”

The matches were intended to be primarily against members of the New England Law Enforcement team, whom the FDNY fought at Foxwoods in Connecticut earlier this year, said Bobby Maguire, who organized the event. Because of problems with the northeastern team, only a few were able to fight, including Jose De la Rosa, who sparred off against Shariff Farrow from the FDNY.

Most of the money raised by ticket sales to the event, after costs to organize the matches are handled, will go toward a number of charities to help veterans and fellow firefighters, Maguire said. Along with ticket sales, a 50/50 raffle raised about $2,600 to go toward the Wounded Warriors Foundation, which helps disabled veterans get new homes.

Two robbed at gunpoint outside Resorts World Casino


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

Resorts World

Two men were held at gun point and handed over more than $200 to a robber in the early hours of Sunday, September 16 in the parking lot of Resorts World Casino New York City, police said.

The victims, ages 18 and 19, were approached around 4:20 a.m. by a man, about 6’ tall and 180 pounds, as the pair was leaving the casino and headed toward their car.

The man pulled out a small black fire arm and pointed it at the two and demanded money, police said; the two men gave about $260 to the mugger before he fled the scene through the parking lot.

No shots were fired and the victims did not sustain any injuries.

The robber was last seen wearing a white sweater with black and orange diamonds, blue jeans and a black cap, police said.

 

Racino robber faces 25 years


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

Resorts World

Prosecutors did their own snatch and grab.

The suspect nabbed for robbing Resorts World Casino New York City in late June waived his extradition rights on Wednesday, August 1, and will be moved to Queens from Monroe County, Pennsylvania, officials said.

Kevin Lides, 23, of Briarwood, had been named as the culprit by the district attorney’s office after the note he passed to a teller — demanding cash and threatening the teller’s life — was found to have his fingerprints. There was also surveillance video placing the suspect in the casino at the time of the robbery.

For security reasons, it has not been announced when Lides will be moved back to Queens, officials said.

Should Lides be convicted for taking around $63,000 in cash from the casino, he could face up to 25 years in prison, according to the DA’s office.

The arrest was applauded by local politicians and Resorts World officials, highlighting the Racino’s surveillance system and its cooperation with the 106th Precinct as pivotal to Lides’ capture.

“This arrest proves that our surveillance system is working,” said Resorts World spokesperson Stefan Friedman. “Through close collaboration with the NYPD and the information revealed on our state-of-the-art on-site surveillance technology, we were able to assist the police in apprehending the suspect.”

“I believe that the safety and security of the visitors to Resorts World should always be a high priority,” said State Senator Joseph Addabbo, who pushed for better security in the wake of the robbery. “I appreciate all the efforts of law enforcement involved in this arrest; I am most grateful and proud of the work done by our 106th Precinct and its detectives.”

Racino robber caught in Pennsylvania


| tcullen@queenscourier.com

Resorts World

The suspect wanted for robbing about $63,000 from Resorts World Casino New York City was arrested on Tuesday, July 29 in Pennsylvania and will be moved back to Queens, the district dttorney’s office announced.

The suspect entered the Racino during the afternoon of June 29, passed a note to a teller on the second floor demanding money and threatening that she would be killed. After receiving cash, he fled, right out of the casino’s front door.

Officials allege that finger prints on the note matched that of Kevin Lides, 23, of Briarwood. Surveillance video of the suspect match Lides’ description, officials said, and he was picked up by Monroe County police.

Lides faced a Monroe County judge on Wednesday, August 1 in regards to his extradition to Queens. He will be charged in Queens with first-degree robbery and second-degree grand larceny, according to the DA’s office. He could face up to 25 years in prison if convicted.

“The defendant is accused of brazenly walking into a crowded casino on a Friday afternoon and demanding money,” said District Attorney Richard A. Brown. “The odds of getting away with such an alleged crime were stacked against him, and his long overdue arrest proves the old adage: you can run but you cannot hide.”

Queens’ Morning Roundup


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Con Ed Locks Out Workers Following Failed Contract Talks 

Consolidated Edison and its employees union had a war of words Sunday over who was responsible for the lockout that left 8,500 workers off the job. Talks between Con Ed and Local 1-2, Utility Workers Union of America broke down early Sunday.Both sides kept talking past the midnight deadline but the utility dismissed the workers at 2 a.m. Sunday and brought in 5,000 managers to run its electric, gas and steam operations. Read more: [NY1] 

Police Are Hunting For A Pair Of Suspects In A String Of Sexual Assaults In Queens 

The NYPD is asking the public for assistance in tracking down a sexual abuse, rape, and robbery suspect in Queens. The alleged perpetrator has struck four times. His first attack came against a 19-year-old woman in Forest Hills when he sexually assaulted a woman at knife point and stole her cell phone and cash. Read more: [1010wins]

Willets Point Business owners’ City and NY Mets owners intend to maul us with mega-mall 

The city’s newly announced plans for Willets Point are an outrage — and should be seen as such by every City Council member who voted in favor of the plan that was originally proposed, and by all New York City taxpayers who are being stuck with the bill for what will forever be known as Bloomberg’s folly. Read more: [New York Daily News] 

Queens billboard no good for advertising: lawsuit 

A 75-year-old Queens billboard could go blank if the city has its way. Atlantic Outdoor Advertising began leasing the billboard at 23-10 Queens Plaza South in 1999, but when it sought permission to change wording on the rooftop display last year, the move was rejected because the city claimed the billboard was not an “advertising” sign. Read more: [New York Post] 

Rockaway residents rally to replace fence around nude beach 

Rockaway residents fed up with getting an eyeful from a nude beach are demanding the city rebuild a fence to shield their gaze from naked sunbathers. Dozens of scandalized locals rallied at the beach Sunday — pushing to rebuild the fence that separated the federally controlled adult beach in Riis Park from the tamer sands of Neponsit. Read more: [New York Daily News] 

NYC’s first casino, Resorts World Casino, robbed for the first time

The city’s first casino was robbed for the first time on Friday afternoon, police and sources said. An unarmed robber slipped a note to a second-floor cashier at Resorts World Casino in Queens and demanded cash late Friday afternoon, police said. The cashier forked over currency and the suspect fled about 4:45 p.m. Police would not confirm the amount. Read more: [New York Daily News]

 

State Senator Shirley Huntley’s husband allegedly robbed outside Aqueduct Racino


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

The husband of a Queens public official alleged he was robbed at gunpoint outside Resorts World Casino, but Racino officials are calling his bluff.

State Senator Shirley Huntley’s spouse, Herbert Huntley, told cops last month that while walking outside the Ozone Park facility, three males with revolvers stopped him and stole approximately $380 in cash from his wallet.

However, representatives from the Racino have contradicted the husband’s account after reviewing the facility’s surveillance cameras.

“A preliminary look at our surveillance system does not support the allegation,” said Stefan Friedman, a spokesperson for Resorts World. “The safety of our patrons is Resorts World New York’s top priority, and working alongside the NYPD, we have launched a thorough investigation of these allegations.”

Investigators at the 106th Precinct are looking into the claims of both sides, but have not confirmed anything at this time.

“We investigated the night of the report and we forwarded it to the detectives who are now working on it,” 106th Precinct community affairs officer Kenneth Zorn said. “It is absolutely an open investigation.”

Repeated calls to the senator’s office for comment were not returned by the time this paper went to print.

Last month The Courier reported that the 106th Precinct, which covers the Racino, added 15 new officers. In anticipation of the first summer after the opening of Resorts World, four additional officers have been designated to the casino during the weekends.

 

New cops join 106th precinct


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

DSC_0321

Fresh out of the academy, 15 newly minted police officers joined the 106th Precinct. The rookie rangers were introduced to the public at the precinct’s monthly meeting on Wednesday, May 9 by Captain Thomas Pascale. On hand to welcome the recruits was Senator Joseph Addabbo who congratulated Pascale for obtaining extra law enforcement officials. According to Addabbo, the tourist traffic at Resorts World Casino and the relocation of cops to the Rockaways during the summer caused the precinct to garner more assistance.

Racino employees charged with forging cards


| mchan@queenscourier.com

A stint of luck has run dry for two Racino employees, busted for forging fraudulent casino player cards, officials said.

Moises Jones, 29, and Rolanda Roberts, 33, have been charged with allegedly generating and distributing between 70 and 200 fraudulent casino player cards over the last seven weeks at Resorts World Casino, said District Attorney Richard A. Brown. Each card, Brown said, represents $100 in casino credit.

In statements made to casino authorities, Jones allegedly said he had been making fraudulent player cards for about a month — netting approximately $2,000 in profit — while Roberts, he said — working in concert — handed the cards to casino clients.

“Employee theft is a major concern for the gaming industry and my office,” Brown said. “In this case, the defendants took a gamble and lost — big time. They now face having felony criminal records and the real possibility of incarceration.”

Stefan Friedman, spokesperson for Resorts World, said the Racino is “working cooperatively with the authorities on this matter,” but he declined to comment further “due to the ongoing nature of the investigation.”

Jones and Roberts, respectively from the Bronx and Brooklyn, were arraigned on February 21 and were each charged with one count of fourth-degree grand larceny, 24 counts of second-degree forgery, 24 counts of second-degree criminal possession of a forged instrument, 24 counts of first-degree falsifying business records and 24 counts of fifth degree criminal possession of stolen property.

If convicted, they each face up to seven years in prison.

Jones was held on $5,000 bail while Roberts was released on her own recognizance, the district attorney said. They were both ordered to return to court on March 9.

Two casino players from Brooklyn also drew snake eyes, the district attorney said, and were arrested for unlawfully using at least seven of the cards.

Sonny Vlado, 40, and Richard Ulado, 45, were each charged with one count of second-degree criminal possession of a forged instrument, one count of petit larceny and one count of fifth-degree criminal possession of stolen property, officials said.

Vlado and Ulado face up to seven years in prison if convicted. They are slated to return to court on March 12.

Addabbo calls for more cops in 106th Precinct


| mchan@queenscourier.com

The pressure is on for NYPD officials to assign more officers to an area local leaders are saying is quickly becoming inundated with mass volumes of visitors.

Senator Joseph Addabbo sent Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly a letter on February 8, requesting a “significant increase” in additional officers for the 106th Precinct in Ozone Park — home to the newest city hotspot, Resorts World Casino.

While Addabbo said there is “never a magic number” in regards to how many officers are needed, he said major changes to the precinct coverage areas should be coupled with substantial increases in their resources.

“We are a different precinct than we have been in the past. Rationally, there is a dire need for an increase of police officers,” Addabbo said. “I don’t expect a quick answer, but I think everyone is on the same page. Nobody would want to see the neighborhoods around Resorts World become a bad area if they want the casino to flourish.”

According to Betty Braton, chair of Community Board 10, the current number of officers the precinct has is not enough to properly service an area that now sees over 20,000 visitors per day and close to 100,000 on the weekend.

“That number of people adds to the load of the day-to-day work of police officers,” Braton said. “For the police department not to assign additional police officers to the 106th Precinct when we have that volume of people coming in, out and through our area is not acceptable.”

Addabbo said the fight to secure more resources for the precinct has been ongoing since even before the casino made its debut. Now, more than ever — especially with the proposed convention center at the same location — he said there is a “greater need for public security” in the area.

The senator also cited the “recent rise in crime in the area” as one of the reasons for his request, however NYPD officials did not comment regarding reported rumors of crime spikes near the Racino.

Though Stefan Friedman, spokesperson for Resorts World, declined to comment on these specific allegations, he said the facility has been “incredibly safe.”

“We just want to be preventive of any spikes in serious crimes,” Addabbo said. “We should always stay ahead of the curve.”

The NYPD did not comment as to whether the 106th Precinct will be getting additional officers.

Officials dispel rumors of crime spikes near Racino


| mchan@queenscourier.com

While reported rumors surface about crime spikes near the Racino, officials hope to dispel the so-called fallacies.

A recent New York Post article alleged petit larcenies and misdemeanor assaults have increased within the 106th Precinct — which covers the new Resorts World Casino — though they say it’s unclear whether the offenses can be tied to the South Ozone Park gambling operation.

The published story started a flurry of worry, according to Captain Thomas Pascale, the 106th Precinct’s commanding officer.

However, local officials said so far there’s no cause for concern.

“There’s no indication that any increase in crime is related to activities at the casino,” said Betty Braton, chair of Community Board 10. “We work closely with the police department and casino security to monitor what is actually going on. So far, there’s nothing out of the ordinary.”

According to the Post, “at least three” separate crimes have occurred on casino property, including “a car stolen from a parking lot, a dropped wallet snatched in the Racino by a patron, and one gambler who tried to use a counterfeit bill in a slot machine.”

Though Stefan Friedman, spokesperson for Resorts World, declined to comment on these specific allegations, he said the facility has been “incredibly safe.”

“The safety of our patrons is priority number one,” Friedman said. “Our commitment to keeping criminal activity out of our project has resulted in extremely few incidents on and around the casino property since our opening.”

Pascale of the 106th Precinct directed comment — in regards to statistics and allegations — to NYPD officials, who did not respond as of press time.

Local businesses benefit from Giants’ championship run


| aaltman@queenscourier.com

As Big Blue heads to Indianapolis, New York is seeing green.

After their teeth-clenching defeat of the San Francisco 49ers in overtime, the Giants are set for Super Bowl XLVI — and local companies are experiencing an upswing in business as fans flock to retailers and restaurants teeming with team spirit.

Shoppers stormed Modell’s within minutes of the NFC Championship Game’s end, scouring racks and shelves for coveted Giants gear. A spokesperson from the store’s College Point location divulged that the “Locker Room Tee” and the “Roster Tee” are two of the hottest items flying off the shelves, as well as the “always popular” hat adorned with the official Championship logo.

At the Modell’s in Ozone Park, patrons arrived as early as 7 a.m. on Monday, January 23 to be the first to score Championship duds. The store had been receiving shipments of merchandise intermittently throughout the day. According to a store spokesperson, five tables were set aside to hold Giants merchandise.

Athletic apparel outfitters were not the only businesses suddenly stricken with Super Bowl fever. At Strawberry’s Sports Grill in Douglaston, fans enjoying the Championship game were thrown into a frenzy when the Giants scored the final points.

“The place went nuts,” said Strawberry’s General Manager James Scholz. “It was amazing.”

According to Scholz, guests packed the restaurant, taking up every reservation slot and filling up the waitlist. Several Giants diehards have already cemented their Super Bowl Sunday plans at Strawberry’s, making reservations nearly two weeks in advance.

Stefan Friedman, a spokesperson from Resort’s World Casino, said the complex’s Bar 360 was jammed “wall to wall” with Giants supporters during the penultimate match. Friedman said the room’s post-win energy was “euphoric.” Resorts World is planning a special party for February 5 to celebrate the Super Bowl.

If you build it, they will come


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Last week’s State of the State address by Governor Andrew Cuomo promised big things for Queens, chief among them building the country’s largest convention center on the former site of the Aqueduct Racino.

The 3.8 million-square-foot convention center would accommodate the nation’s largest events, up to 3,000 hotel rooms and many restaurants, and create new tourism revenues. The project would be a $4 billion investment financed by Resorts World that the governor said is estimated to generate 10,000 construction jobs and 10,000 direct, permanent jobs and thus create new economic activity throughout the state, especially in our own backyards.

The project would be headed by Genting America, the same company that conceived and constructed the Resorts World Casino at Aqueduct.

We say bravo to Cuomo, to Genting, the elected officials in support and to the project as a whole.

The New York International Convention and Exhibition Center will put Queens on the map and make us a “destination location.”

The first phase, 2.6 million square feet, is set to be completed at the earliest, in November 2014.

But before that can happen, certain improvements must be in place.

Traffic and road conditions need to be ameliorated on the Belt Parkway and local streets need to be studied and prepared for the additional traffic, including extra parking spaces.

The good news is that Resorts World and the state have already agreed to work alongside the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) to help fund and introduce uninterrupted subway service between Midtown Manhattan and the center.

Our borough is bustling and bourgeoning, and a convention center will be the perfect way for Queens to hit the jackpot!

Meanwhile, on the other end of the borough, 13 acres of waterfront property — the single largest building site in the borough — is now for sale in Whitestone.

According to Massey Knakal Realty Services, the site has already been approved for the construction of 52 single-family homes by the City Planning Commission.

The area, according to locals, is one of the most desirable in the borough, with houses selling for $2 million. And the development of the 52 homes, according to one local official, would “set a precedent for future development.”

And in Astoria, the Lincoln Equities Group, a real estate company based in New Jersey, hopes to build seven residential towers, dubbed Hallets Point, a supermarket and a waterfront park along the East River.

This would create roughly 2,200 units of housing. Approximately 1,800 of the units would be market rate, with 400 to 500 – or 20 percent – reserved for affordable housing. The privately-financed project, which is expected to create 1,400 construction jobs and 300 permanent jobs, has an estimated cost of over $1 billion.

With all these development projects, it’s clear that Queens is the place to be!

 

[Update with pics] Cuomo wants convention center, table gaming for Aqueduct Racino


| smosco@queenscourier.com

Convention Interior 1 w

There were two major points in Governor Andrew Cuomo’s State of the State speech that everyone saw coming, both of which have a lot to do with Queens.

During his speech on Wednesday, January 4, the governor formally introduced the idea of legalizing full table gaming in New York State, which would mean big news for Resorts World Casino in South Ozone Park. He also revealed his plan to initiate the building of the country’s largest convention center on that ground, the former site of the Aqueduct Racino.

The 3.8 million-square-foot convention center would accommodate the nation’s largest events, drive demand for hotel rooms and restaurants, and create new tourism revenues. The project would be a $4 billion investment that the governor said is estimated to generate tens of thousands of jobs and create new economic activity throughout the state.

“Today is different. We are not just talking about problems, we are talking about our opportunities,” he said. “Let’s build the largest convention center in the nation, period.”

The project would be headed by Genting America, the same company that conceived and constructed the Resorts World Casino at Aqueduct.
“Genting America is extremely excited about this opportunity to partner with Governor Cuomo to build the largest convention center in the country,” said Genting America’s senior vice president of development Christian Goode. “It’s a great time to invest and grow in New York, and we are thrilled to be able to play a role in creating jobs and increasing tourism.”

On the gaming end, Cuomo said the state must develop a comprehensive approach to casino gaming because the state is losing tax revenue, tourism dollars and jobs to neighboring states. Cuomo said he will support a constitutional amendment to allow gaming in the state, which he said will generate an estimated $1 billion in economic activity in the state.

“It’s not about chips and cards, it’s about jobs,” he said. “Let’s get the jobs back in New York, and let’s take the first step this year.”