Tag Archives: Ridgewood

New Single Stop pilot program helps seniors sign up for benefits


| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

RIDGEWOOD TIMES/Photo by Anthony Giudice

The seniors at the Peter Cardella Senior Citizen Center in Ridgewood can now receive help signing up for important benefit programs through a new pilot initiative called the Single Stop Program.

It aims to expand seniors’ access to and enrollment in benefits such as Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Senior Citizen Rent Increase Exemption (SCRIE), Extra Help, Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) and more.

“It really is a good thing,” said Barbara Toscano, executive director for the Peter Cardella Senior Center. “I think we were picked because this community would have a high level of seniors that would need these programs.”

The Single Stop Program brings in knowledgeable staff members to the senior center once a week who will screen seniors for benefits, help maximize services for individuals, and provide individual assistance in applying and securing the benefits needed. This is all done through the pilot program’s electronic enrollment system which will help seniors navigate the many potential assistance opportunities.

“A person can come in to the senior center and want food stamps, and it goes through their computer system,” Toscano said. “It really is wonderful because a lot of times when you have all these forms and paperwork to fill out, it can take over a month-and-a-half sometimes to enroll…the Single Stop Program is working really well here. It runs until November, but they might come back and do it again.”

Single Stop Program staff members will be able to provide follow-up services from their Single Stop sites where seniors can obtain additional services and follow-up on issues related to their benefits applications and cases.

“It’s a really nice program, it’s really helpful for the seniors,” Toscano said. “We do all this here at the Peter Cardella Center, but it takes a long time. This gets back to them really quick. Food stamps are so important, especially for seniors. It’s really good for them. We are trying to get a lot of people enrolled and are trying to bring a lot of these benefits to the seniors here.”

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Shipping service center affiliated with Amazon moving to Ridgewood


| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

Photo courtesy of PropertyShark/Greiner Maltz

A major shipping provider is moving to Ridgewood as it expands its space in the borough.

LaserShip, a shipping service that distributes products for companies including Amazon, Staples and Office Depot, has agreed to leave their current location in Long Island City, and move into the larger warehouse at 16-70 Weirfield St., between Cypress and Wyckoff avenues, according to The Real Deal.

The Commercial Observer reported that the distribution company based out of Virginia has signed a 10-year lease to use the one-story 40,800-square-foot warehouse in Ridgewood, giving them more than triple the space they had at the 36-01 47th Ave. location, which is a 13,000-square foot warehouse.

The Ridgewood location is an ideal space for the distribution center, as it will place LaserShip between Brooklyn and Queens.

When contacted, LaserShip declined to comment.

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Art, film and music festival Kunstfest is coming to Ridgewood


| editorial@ridgewoodtimes.com

Photo courtesy of Troma Entertainment

BY KELLY MARIE MANCUSO

World-renowned independent film studio Troma is coming to Ridgewood with the debut of Kunstfest, a celebration of B movies, beer and art, at local heavy metal hofbrau Bierleichen (582 Seneca Ave.) on Sunday, Sept. 6, from 4 to 10 p.m.

Troma Entertainment Inc. recently celebrated its 40th anniversary, making it the longest-running independent movie studio in North America. Troma studios first gained notoriety in the 1980s with the debut of their cult classic sci-fi comedy “The Toxic Avenger,” followed by other underground hits such as “Poultrygeist: Night of the Chicken Dead” and “Return to Nuke ‘Em High: Vol. 1.”

The upcoming Kunstfest will feature a screening of Troma’s latest Blu-ray release, “Extreme Jukebox.” The Italian horror comedy follows the misadventures of rock ‘n’ roll couple Jessie and Chloe after the young lovers unleash the murderous spirit of the Killer in the Woods, once contained in an LP found in the derelict estate of fictitious rock star David Crystal. Troma describes the film as “’Lords of Salem’ by way of ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll High School,’ with a side of spaghetti!”

Sunday’s festival kicks off with German food and beer specials from heavy metal German bar Bierleichen, along with a barbecue in the beer hall’s garden. “Extreme Jukebox” premiers at 5 p.m., followed by a special reading of Troma Entertainment president Lloyd Kaufman’s sci-fi satire novel “Pests” by Ridgewood resident and Troma studios’ own Jordan Young at 6:30 p.m.

Glendale-based Finback Brewery will be on hand to celebrate the release of Oscillation, its first-ever IPA in a can. Finback will be joined by Craft Beer New York, a mobile beer application, to celebrate Bierleichen’s addition to the app.

At 7 p.m., New York City-based indie rock trio The Shook Ones will take the stage for a live musical performance. The all-female band’s unique sound is an eclectic mix of 1960s girl groups, 1990s riot-girl punk, surf rock and funk. The band made its debut performance at 5Pointz in Queens and The Branded Saloon in Brooklyn during the 2013 Make Music New York Festival.

Kunstfest is derived from “Kunst,” which is German for art. To celebrate the festival’s mix of metal, art and German culture, Ridgewood Social will curate a small market of artists working in the horror and gore genres.

Admission to Kunstfest is free and open to the public. Festivalgoers will also be treated to a special secret surprise guest appearance at 8:30 p.m.

For more information, visit Bierleichen on Facebook.

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Annual drag festival to take place at Ridgewood’s Onderdonk House


| asuriel@queenscourier.com

Photos courtesy of Bushwig

It’ll be a real drag to see this show, but in a fun way.

Ridgewood’s Onderdonk House is gearing up to host Bushwig, the fourth annual festival of drag and musical performances in Queens.

The main event will take place on Sept. 12 and 13 from 2 to 10 p.m. at 1820 Flushing Ave. on the Ridgewood/Bushwick border. The shows during this time are appropriate for all ages and are being held outdoors, and DJ sets, BBQ, crafts, a photo booth, games and prizes are all slated to be a part of the lineup.

The festival will feature 150 drag queens with different styles and themed costumes and 20 live musical performances. Major names set to appear include Lady Bunny, No Bra, Macy Rodman and Chae Buttuh, and Mz. Bushwig 2015 will be crowned during a special ball on the night of Sept. 11 at the Lovegun club on Grand Avenue in Brooklyn.

According to Matthew Mendoza, an event planner performing under the name “Matty Horrorchata,” the show has grown considerably since its creation. This will be its first year at the Onderdonk House as part of that expansion.


Mendoza—who dubbed the show “Bushwig” after being inspired by a wig shopping trip—said that a lot of the performers had an experimental performing style. This sentiment was echoed last year in a 2014 review by The New York Times, who declared the festival to be “pushing the boundaries of drag.”

“We’re not ‘pageanty.’ It’s not traditional,” Mendoza said. “It’s newer and cutting edge.”

A full access weekend passes is $40 and is available at bushwig2015.peatix.com.

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Police issue warning after burglary rash strikes 104th Precinct area


| rpozarycki@queenscourier.com

Photo via Google Maps

Open windows and unlocked doors contributed to seven of nine burglaries that occurred within a four-day period last month in the 104th Precinct’s confines, according to police.

In an Aug. 30 email to civic leaders that the Ridgewood Times obtained, Det. Thomas Bell of the 104th Precinct Community Affairs Unit stated that eight of the break-ins between Aug. 23 and Aug. 26 occurred in Ridgewood and Glendale, while the other took place in Maspeth.

The first burglary occurred in Ridgewood between 3 and 5:30 p.m. on Aug. 23, when unidentified suspects entered a location on the 8000 block of Cypress Avenue. The following day, two apartments on the 900 block of Onderdonk Avenue were hit by burglars sometime after 2:30 p.m.

Three other break-ins in Ridgewood occurred on Aug. 25, with two incidents happening between 6:30 a.m. and 8:30 p.m. on the 1800 block of Cornelia St.; and the other between 11:30 a.m. and 1:45 p.m. on the 1800 block of Centre St. In each case, Bell said, the culprit(s) entered through a window. The Maspeth burglary also occurred on Aug. 25 between 7 a.m. and 10:15 p.m. at a dry cleaners on the 6000 block of 56th Road; in that incident, police said, the crooks entered through an unlocked rear door.

Finally, two apartments on the 6400 block of 74th Avenue in Glendale were visited by burglars between 8 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Aug. 26. In both instances, the suspect(s) reportedly entered through open windows.

Police continue to search for the suspects responsible. Bell indicated the burglaries may have been prevented if the homeowners remembered to properly secure their windows and doors before leaving the premises.

“Taking a minute to check your windows can make the difference between you being the victim of a burglary and that burglar moving on to another location,” he wrote. “Please take the time to check your windows before you leave your home. I am not saying this is going to stop a determined criminal, but I am saying it will make it more difficult for the criminal.”

The 104th Precinct also encourages residents in the area to take advantage of free home security screenings offered by its Crime Prevention Unit. During the screenings arranged with the homeowner or tenant, officers inspect the premises and offer advice on ways residents can make improvements to keep potential criminals away.

For more information or to sign up for a free survey, call Police Officers Brenda Hyatt or Edwin Collado of the Crime Prevention Unit at 718-386-6223.

Anyone who has information about the burglary rash that could prove helpful should call the 104th Precinct Detective Squad at 718-386-2735; anyone who witnesses a possible burglary in progress should call 911 immediately.

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Police searching for suspect in Ridgewood gunpoint robberies


| amatua@queenscourier.com

Video courtesy of NYPD

The NYPD has released video footage of a man wanted in connection to two armed robberies in Ridgewood.

The suspect — described as an 18-year-old Hispanic male — stopped a 58-year-old woman on Aug. 22 at the corner of 60th Lane and 67th Avenue around 5:30 a.m., police said. He displayed a gun and demanded her belongings, stealing the victim’s purse containing $50, a Samsung cellphone and other items.

According to authorities, later that day, at about 11:55 p.m., the same man is suspected of robbing an 18-year-old man and woman who were sitting in front of a home on 60th Place near Linden Street. After displaying a gun, the suspect pocketed an iPhone and a black bag that belonged to the victims.

Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 800-577-TIPS (8477). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website or can text their tips to CRIMES (274637), then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.

Video footage from the second robbery on Aug. 22.

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Ridgewood to get 17-story mixed-use building on St. Nicholas Avenue


| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

Rendering courtesy of AB Capstone

Plans for a large scale 17-story mixed-use building in the heart of Ridgewood have been filed with the Department of Buildings (DOB), according to Community Board 5 (CB 5).

The mixed retail and residential building will encompass the footprint of the sites at 54-27 Myrtle Ave. and 336 and 350 St. Nicholas Ave. At 17 stories, it will dwarf the surrounding buildings.

According to the plans filed earlier this month, there will be two retail spaces within the mixed-use structure, as well as several office spaces.

The site will have 129 residential units, according to Meir Babaev, of developer AB Capstone, owner of the properties.

“We are not quite certain yet regarding the percentage of units that will or will not be affordable. This will depend on the mayor’s office,” Babaev said.

AB Capstone purchased the sites last year and has set aside 87,441 square feet of space for the residential portion of the building; 88,598 square feet for the commercial aspects; and 3,265 square feet for an as-of-yet undefined community facility. This will total a square footage of 179,304 square feet, according to plans.

Babaev also confirmed that the site will have “below-grade attended parking.”

For future residents who depend on public transportation, the development site is located a block from the L and M Myrtle-Wyckoff Avenues subway station, and is near the B13, B26, B52, B54, Q55 and Q58 buses.

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Public invited to September participatory budgeting meetings in 30th Council District


| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

RIDGEWOOD TIMES/Photo by Anthony Giudice

Now that participatory budgeting is coming to the 30th Council DistrictCity Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley is inviting the public to attend neighborhood meetings where they can have their voices heard on upcoming capital budget ideas.

Through the participatory budgeting process, residents of the 30th Council District — which includes all or parts of Ridgewood, Glendale, Maspeth, Middle Village, Woodhaven and Woodside — will gather to brainstorm and then vote on a number of proposed capital budget projects for their community, including street resurfacing, street tree planting, park improvements and more.

Crowley has released a list of dates through September of when and where community members can meet with her to discuss the process of participatory budgeting.

Those dates and locations are as follows:

  • Thursday, Sept. 10, at the Frank Kowalinski Post, 61-57 Maspeth Ave., Maspeth, at 6:30 p.m.;
  • Saturday, Sept. 12, at the Ridgewood Library, 2012 Madison St., Ridgewood, at 2:30 p.m.;
  • Monday, Sept. 14, at the Wynwood Gardens Civic Association meeting, 70-31 48th Ave., Woodside, at 7 p.m.;
  • Wednesday, Sept. 16, at Maspeth Town Hall, 53-37 72nd St., Maspeth, at 6:30 p.m.;
  • Saturday, Sept. 19, at the Ridgewood YMCA located at 69-02 64th St., Ridgewood, at 1 p.m.;
  • Thursday, Sept. 24, at P.S. 87, 67-54 80th St., Middle Village, at 6:30 p.m.;
  • Monday, Sept. 28, at Redeemer Lutheran School located at 69-26 Cooper Ave., Glendale, at 6:30 p.m.; and
  • Wednesday, Sept. 30, at the U.S. Columbarium, 61-40 Mount Olivet Crescent, Middle Village, at 6:30 p.m.

Future workshop dates will be released in the weeks to come. For more information, call Crowley’s Glendale office at 718-366-3900.

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Queens workers owed $800K in unclaimed back wages: comptroller


| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

Photo via Scott Stringer's Facebook page

With Labor Rights Week quickly approaching, City Comptroller Scott Stringer scored a victory for city workers when he found $3.7 million as part of unclaimed prevailing wage settlements with several companies that worked on city-funded projects.

Stringer is now seeking the public’s help in identifying the over 1,000 workers from across the city to whom these funds are owed.

Throughout Queens, 200 individuals are owed nearly $800,000, according to Stringer’s findings.

In Corona, 20 people are owed a total of $117,470.53; Elmhurst has 18 individuals who are owed $74,934.79; and in Maspeth, Ridgewood and Jackson Heights, 14 people from each neighborhood are owed a total of $151,811.21.

“My office has recovered millions of dollars through our enforcement of the prevailing wage, but now we need your help to connect these workers with the money they are owed,” Stringer said. “Thousands of hard-working individuals, many of whom are immigrants, have been cheated out of their rightfully earned wages, but they may not know these funds exist. Help us get the word out about unclaimed wages — recovering thousands of dollars may only be a phone call or email away.”

Stringer’s office is trying to identify those who are owed wages through social media, media partnerships and distribution of informational flyers in several languages including English, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, Russian and Creole in neighborhoods throughout the city.

“We’re ramping up our efforts to identify these hard-working men and women who are owed the money they earned,” the comptroller said. “In the coming weeks, we’ll be on the streets, on social media and on the airwaves with a single message: if you’ve been cheated out of your wages, the comptroller’s office has your back. Tell your friends and family: call our hotline or visit our website to see if you are eligible to receive your lost wages.”

The prevailing wage laws require employers to pay workers the wage and benefit rate set annually by the comptroller when those employees work on city public works projects, such as renovating public schools or building service contracts, which includes security guard and custodial work, with city agencies.

Workers who believe they may be entitled to unclaimed wages can call the comptroller’s hotline at 212-669-4443, send in inquiries via email to laborlaw@comptroller.nyc.gov or check the comptroller’s unclaimed wages website.

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PHOTOS: Good health and cheer found at Wyckoff Hospital street fair


| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

Photo by Eddie Torres/

The community was invited to come out and enjoy a day filled with fun, entertainment and information during the annual Wyckoff Heights Medical Center Health Fair on Aug. 15.

More than 70 information booths from the hospital’s departments as well as community vendors lined Stockholm Street between Wyckoff and St. Nicholas avenues on the Ridgewood/Bushwick border. Ramon Rodriguez, the hospital’s CEO, was on hand to greet guests.

Photo by Anthony Giudice

Photo by Anthony Giudice

Many of the booths provided presentations and educational materials as well as free screenings for blood pressure, cholesterol, body mass index, bone density and blood glucose to more than 500 visitors throughout the day. There were also activities for children including face painting, music and raffles.


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Cops nab pair who used BB gun to rob man on Ridgewood street


| rpozarycki@queenscourier.com

Photo via Google Maps

Two men were arrested last week after they allegedly used a BB gun to rob a man on a Ridgewood street, prosecutors revealed on Tuesday.

Ridgewood’s Enis Mustafa, 30, and Astrit Kupi, 22, were collared by 104th Precinct officers shortly after the stickup, which occurred at 12:15 a.m. on Aug. 10 in the area of 60th Place and Putnam Avenue, according to the Queens district attorney’s office.

Reportedly, the two suspects approached the male victim and attempted to yank the gold chain he was wearing around his neck.

Police said Kupi then allegedly punched the man in the face, and Mustafa pulled a black firearm out of his waistband, pointed it at the victim and demanded additional property.

The victim removed the gold chain as well as a gold bracelet from his wrist and nearly $400 in cash and threw them to the ground. Kupi and Mustafa picked up the items, then ordered the victim to leave.

According to the criminal complaint, responding officers soon spotted Kupi and Mustafa walking in the vicinity of 60th Street and 70th Avenue and stopped them; both men fit the description of the suspects.

Officers found the stolen cash in Kupi’s pants pocket, while the gold chain and bracelet — as well as a BB gun allegedly used in the robbery — were found on the ground near where the suspects were stopped.

Kupi and Mustafa were charged with second-degree armed robbery, second-degree robbery, criminal possession of a weapon and criminal possession of stolen property. Both remain held on $25,000 bond or $15,000 cash bail, according to court records.

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Wyckoff Heights Hospital working to affiliate with North Shore/LIJ system


| rpozarycki@queenscourier.com

File photo

America’s health care industry is changing, and Wyckoff Heights Medical Center on the Ridgewood/Bushwick border is looking to partner with a regional health care giant to expand and enhance its services.

According to Wyckoff Heights CEO Ramon Rodriguez, the hospital is in discussions with the North Shore/LIJ Health System regarding an affiliation agreement designed to retain Wyckoff’s independence while also providing additional health care options and “support for quality of care and clinical decisions.”

Serving tens of thousands of patients annually from both sides of the Brooklyn/Queens border, Rodriguez said, the hospital needs to transform its services to keep up with the national health care trend that has seen the rise of urgent care centers and outpatient/ambulatory services along with a reduction in extended hospital stays.

To that end, the board recently authorized Rodriguez to seek out affiliations with larger medical organizations in the New York City area. In responding to a request for proposals, he noted, North Shore/LIJ offered what the board considered to be the best options for Wyckoff Heights.

“We are expecting to continue the services we deliver and expand outpatient and ambulatory services,” Rodriguez said. “We’re trying to figure out how to be more efficient and effective and make Wyckoff Heights a better place for residents to turn.”

The hospital already has a working agreement with Maimonides Medical Center, also a North Shore/LIJ partner, to enhance patient care as part of a transformation plan submitted to the state. Should the state approve the plan, Wyckoff Heights would be in line to receive $60 million in “substantial capital to make improvements to [the hospital’s] clinical services and make it possible to transform to a more outpatient delivery system,” Rodriguez said.

One such plan to enhance care is the creation of a revamped Maternity Department featuring new birthing rooms.

Working with Maimonides, Wyckoff Heights is on target later this year to receive certification to perform cardiac catherizations, a potentially lifesaving procedure among heart attack and stroke patients currently outsourced to other medical centers.

Rodriguez added that Wyckoff Heights is also working with the Ridgewood Bushwick Senior Citizens Council to expand health care availability to the more than 6,000 people the nonprofit agency serves in both neighborhoods.

As for the North Shore/LIJ partnership, Rodriguez is confident that an agreement will be finalized within six months to a year.

“We’re very excited about it,” he added. “Our board, after much discussion, felt that it made the most sense.”

The Ridgewood Times is awaiting a response from North Shore/LIJ to a request for comment.

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Greater Ridgewood Restoration Corporation kicks off summer fundraising campaign


| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

Photo courtesy of the Greater Ridgewood Restoration Corporation

The Greater Ridgewood Restoration Corporation (GRRC) has begun its semi-annual fundraising campaign, asking members of the Ridgewood, Glendale, Maspeth and Middle Village communities to make donations to help fund programs that have made an important contribution to the areas’ quality of life.

The GRRC has been instrumental in stabilizing and upgrading the neighborhoods that make up Community Board 5 for the last 40 years, offering free programs such as landlord/tenant counseling, helping homeowners apply for low-interest home improvement loans, lobbying for street tree plantings, removing graffiti and more.

The donations will go towards the purchase of a lift for the hot pressure washer used in graffiti removal.

“The pressure washer is extremely heavy and getting it off and on the van is very difficult,” said Angela Mirabile, executive director of GRRC. “Our fundraising goal this year is $10,000 in private donations. This will cover the cost of the lift and replacement of worn equipment and supplies.”

The anti-graffiti program is one of the most used programs offered by GRRC. Last year, GRRC removed graffiti at 125 locations, and this year has cleaned over 110 sites. The organization anticipates cleaning 50 more sites by the end of November.

“It is evident that graffiti vandalism is once again on the rise, and we are doing our best to stay on top of it,” said Christa Walls, community liaison specialist for GRRC.

Mirabile added that funds will also go to cover general administration expenses as well as updating GRRC’s computer systems and software.

“In the past we have received donations ranging from $10 to $2,500. The people of our community support our effort and we are very thankful,” Mirabile said. “The public in this community has been very responsive to our campaign efforts. They are very active and we appreciate that.”

Donations can be made through the GRRC website, through PayPal or by mail to 68-56 Forest Ave., Ridgewood, NY 11385.

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Queens real estate sales drop, but turn bigger profits in recent months: report


| rpozarycki@queenscourier.com

File photo

Reflecting a market gripped by high demand and low supply, real estate sales in Queens decreased slightly but yielded higher prices during the second quarter of 2015, according to a report from broker Cushman & Wakefield.

Approximately 230 properties across the “World’s Borough” changed hands between April and June of this year, a 7 percent drop from the number sold during the first quarter of 2015. Even so, the aggregate sales consideration this quarter — the volume of money exchanged in real estate transactions — reached $835 million, an 8 percent increase from the first quarter.

Cushman & Wakefield described the first six months of 2015 as the second-highest dollar volume the Queens real estate market has seen within the first half of any year, with $1.6 billion in real estate sales generated.

“[At $313 million], development sites accounted for 20 percent of all dollar volume,” the report indicated, “followed by retail properties, with $259 million accounting for 16 percent of the total dollar volume.”

The average price for all types of real estate sold in Queens was $3.4 million, an 18 percent jump from the first half of 2014.

Queens’ strong real estate numbers were evident of a continued upward trend in New York City’s real estate market. According to the report, $37.8 billion in sales activity took place through June, and the city is “on pace to exceed the previous cycle’s high established in 2007.”

“The first half of 2015 will go down as one of the best six-month periods in the city’s history,” said Adrian Mercado, Cushman & Wakefield managing director of research. “All submarkets and property types are firing on all cylinders with market activity outpacing our year-end forecasts.”

Cushman & Wakefield catalogued 141 sales in Queens in which properties were sold for $1 million or more during the second quarter of 2015, accounting for 61.3 percent of real estate transactions during the period.

Among the most lucrative deals were the $71 million sale of an office building at 33-00 Northern Blvd. in Long Island City; a $4.35 million sale of a 23-unit lot of apartment buildings at 1705-1725 Putnam Ave. in Ridgewood; a $72.25 million sale of a 144-unit apartment building at 11-15 Broadway/30-50 21st St. in Astoria; and a $8.8 million sale of a 43,800-square-foot industrial building at 72-42 60th Lane in Glendale.

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Star of Queens: Sarah Feldman, Community Board 5


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Sarah Feldman

Background: Sarah Feldman’s family was originally from New York City but moved to Houston in the ‘70s. Her parents then moved to the West Coast, where her father works for a software company. She moved back to New York in 2006 to study fine arts and web design at Parsons School of Design. Feldman moved to Ridgewood in 2011, where she met her fiance Neil Myers, and she fell in love with the neighborhood.

Occupation: Feldman is self-employed. She also owns a small jewelry business, Prince Peacock, and works at the YMCA teaching art to kids.

She owns Ridgewood Market, which sells affordable art, goods and alcohol.

“I wanted a safe environment that is community driven with the decisions of others,” Feldman said. “I wanted to bring awareness and a new, unbiased perspective of old businesses.” The next market will take place on Sept. 13.

Community Involvement: Feldman was recently appointed to Community Board 5. She’s one of the youngest people on the board and says that she’s learned so much already from the other board members.

“They’ve lived here all their lives,” Feldman said. “There is so much you can learn from them.”

Feldman additionally runs the Ridgewood Social website as its head of marketing.

Biggest Challenge: “The recession was scary,” Feldman said. Additionally, at one point, Feldman couldn’t leave the house due to a health problem.

She had a lot of social anxiety but was able to overcome it. Feldman absolutely loved the feeling of being welcomed into the Ridgewood community, and she has a very positive outlook on life.

Greatest Achievement: “My greatest achievement was my social anxiety not being as bad,” Feldman said. Now, she has more self-confidence, and she added that the people in her neighborhood definitely made her happier.

“Kindness can get you so much further in life than jealousy can,” Feldman said.

Biggest Inspiration: “My biggest inspiration was my grandmother and my stepmom,” Feldman said. Her grandmother, who passed away in 2008, was a creative artist and a feminist who was like a mother to Feldman.

Feldman’s stepmom was the mom she never had. She is self-sufficient and a great role model. “My stepmom practically saved my life,” Feldman said.

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