Tag Archives: Ridgewood

First Queens Art Intervention Day to offer interactive projects throughout borough


| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Photos by RPGA Studios

Communities throughout Queens are set for an artistic intervention, looking to inspire, educate and empower residents and feed the pulse of the borough.

The nonprofit studio Rego Park Green Alliance, which uses creative methods to address community issues, will host the first Queens Art Intervention Day on Sept. 27 throughout the borough from Long Island City to the Rockaways.

“We see something that we are not happy with and we try to think about how we can fix it in a creative way,” said Yvonne Shortt, who started the studio and is currently the executive director.

The day-long event, which has a rain date for Oct. 4, will feature a total of 30 projects including murals, art installations, performance pieces, hands-on programs, and many more creative activities taking place outdoors in Astoria, LIC, Kew Gardens, Elmhurst, Rego Park, Forest Hills, Jackson Heights, Ozone Park, Ridgewood, Laurelton, Corona, Whitestone and the Rockaways.

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“We want our borough to be seen as a place that people want to come and do interesting things,” Shortt said. “We hope this will help Queens continue to grow and continue to thrive and not just have one spot thought of as artistic and creative.”

According to Shortt, along with being visually appealing, the pieces will also serve to bring about change and to get community members thinking about certain issues.

For example, posters for one project called “Stat Girl” depict a super hero displaying statistics on traffic accidents that have occurred on Queens Boulevard in the past two years. The posters will be put up all day down the thoroughfare.

stat girl photo by RPGA Studios

“We would love for people to stop and engage,” Shortt said. “It’s really about the communities themselves to find some inspiration and advocate for better communities.”

Shortt said that although there were over 160 submissions this year, funding, provided solely by Shortt, only allowed for 25 projects to be part of the event. In the future, she hopes to expand the event to more days and many more communities in the borough.

“There’s an active pulse throughout the borough of Queens and I’m very excited to help it move forward. I feel that if you have ideas and are willing to push it forward, that Queens is a very inviting borough.” Shortt said. “We’re showing the vitality of Queens.”

For more information and the full list of projects for Queens Art Intervention Day, click here.

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Report: Queens rental prices drop in August


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Charts courtesy of MNS Real Estate 

The fluctuating Queens rental market saw a decrease in prices in August, after increases in July, according to the “Queens Rental Market Report” by MNS Real Estate.

Average rents throughout the borough dropped 3.74 percent from $2,113 in July to $2,034 in August, the report stated.

The report focused on several neighborhoods, including Long Island City, Astoria, Ridgewood, Flushing, Rego Park, Forest Hills and Jackson Heights.

The biggest changes occurred in studio apartments in Ridgewood, where prices dropped 43.5 percent — about $848 — to $1,100, the least expensive rental price for any type of apartment in the borough. The average price of a studio in the borough is $1,550, according to the report.

Studios page

Also, two-bedroom units in Jackson Heights dipped 26.12 percent to $1,841 from $2,494 in July, a decrease of $653.

“Smaller neighborhoods in Queens are seeing slower progression, however more new developments are scheduled to open their doors in the coming months offering high-end amenities and exceptional convenience,” the report said. “As is evident from the overall decrease in prices this month Queens is expected to have up and down monthly fluctuations, but long-term projections have prices increasing steadily.”

Flushing had the largest decrease in overall average rents with 7.47 percent. Two-bedroom units in Flushing experienced a fall of 17.8 percent from $2,599 in July to $2,136 in August.

The biggest increase was in Ridgewood, where prices for one-bedroom apartments rose 15.3 percent or $260 to $1,960.

Prices in Astoria and Long Island City remained fairly stable, although dropped slightly, according to the report.

Click here to view the full report.

 

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Report: Queens rental prices increase


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

Charts courtesy of MNS Real Estate

Rental prices are continuing to rise in the borough, according to the Queens Rental Market Report by MNS Real Estate.

Rents in Queens jumped about 1.76 percent from approximately $2,077 in June to $2,113 in July, according to the report, which targeted several Queens neighborhoods, including Long Island City, Astoria, Ridgewood, Flushing, Forest Hills, Jackson Heights and Rego Park.

The largest percentage increase in rent prices was seen in studios in Jackson Heights, which saw a 21 percent jump over a month. Studios in the neighborhood shot up from $1,238 in June to about $1,500 in July.

Two-bedrooms in Flushing also experienced a huge surge as prices soared more than 15 percent—an increase of $345 from $2,254 in June to $2,599 in July.

web Market report Jax Hts

The most expensive neighborhood was Long Island City. Although prices fell 0.65 percent for the month because of “a maturing luxury rental market,” according to the report, the average rent prices ranged from $2,410 for a studio to $3,908 for a two-bedroom apartment.

“The rental market throughout Queens is still following the patterns of recent months as the borough continues to see major growth, particularly in Long Island City and Astoria,” the report points out. “With new developments and conversions hitting the market recently, renters have flocked to these areas seeking more options and value for their money.”

Market report page 2 beds web

Studios in Forest Hills had the largest percentage decrease. Prices for a studio in the neighborhood dropped 27 percent ($501) from $1,851 in June to $1,350 in July.

To see the full report, click here.

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Painting helps connect Ridgewood resident to his home


| slicata@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Salvatore Licata

The simple act of painting his surroundings helped draw a Texas transplant closer to his new hometown of Ridgewood.

David Nakabayashi, 52, has been painting since his early childhood. He moved to Ridgewood from Texas in December and right away began painting the landscape of his new area.

“This takes me out of the studio and connects me to my neighborhood,” he said. “It’s a great area to paint.”

Nakabayashi can be spotted throughout the neighborhood about two to three times a week as he does his paintings of Ridgewood en plein air.

He picks a spot to set up his paint stand and illustrates the scene taking place in front of him on a tiny 7-by-7-inch canvas.

During his usual four to five hours of painting, in which he finishes about two to three canvases, locals stop to admire the work and talk about the history of some of the buildings or scenery he may be painting.

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“There are times where I’ll be painting a building and people come up to me and start talking about different stores that used to be there or the different people that once lived there,” he said. “If I hadn’t been out on the streets I would have never learned so much [about Ridgewood].”

Nakabayashi is a self-taught painter. He relies on his artwork as his main source of income but does it for more than just monetary purposes.

“I feel it is my civic duty if I’m a talented guy to give back to my neighborhood,” he said. “Although my paintings are about the neighborhood what’s really important is the connection between me and the art.”

He described Ridgewood as a tight-knit community and said he has never had a bad comment come from any resident who passes by to watch him paint.

“Ridgewood has been super nice to me,” Nakabayashi said. “It’s an ideal place to paint because there is so much diversity in the area.”

paint

He said he has held many “normal” jobs throughout his life, mostly in Texas and New Mexico, but none have given him more pride than painting. The art scene in New York drew him to the city as he is now just a train ride away from some of the most famous art museums in the world. He believes that Ridgewood has been the place for him to live all along.

“I never had the experience of being able to go anywhere and see art all over,” he said. “I think this might be home. I like it here.”

To check out more of Nakabayashi’s work go to www.davidnakabayashi.com.

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Ridgewood bar hosts first variety and burlesque show


| slicata@queenscourier.com

Photos Courtesy of KissedPR

Queens County took on a whole new meaning when a Ridgewood bar hosted a burlesque show.

The first-ever Ridgewood Variety Show, held on Aug. 14, bedazzled patrons at the Queens Tavern on Fresh Pond Road.

“There were so many talented acts,” said Sarah Feldman, one of the organizers of the event and operator of the website Ridgewood Social. “The bar owner and the locals had a fabulous time.”

The two–hour show, held in front of more than 30 cheering guests, included drag, dance, singing, comedy and burlesque acts.

Headliners included New Orleans chanteuse Bronze Bettina, “Maven of the Underworld” Lady Zombie, premiere female drag queen Miss Crimson Kitty and Jantina, the “Burlesque Booty Queen.”

“This was a variety show and the difference between a variety show and a burlesque is you have an opportunity to entertain people with more unique performers,” Feldman said.

The event was put together by both Ridgewood Social and KissedPR, a public relations firm for small businesses. One person even commented on how the performances reminded them of what used to happen in Greenwich Village and said it was a “very New York City” kind of night.

The show worked out so well that Feldman was asked to put together another one and is hoping that she can have it as a monthly event at the tavern.

Already, she and the owner of the Queens Tavern have scheduled for the next show to be on Sept. 18 and hope for an even bigger crowd.

 

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Police looking for driver in fatal Maspeth hit-and-run


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

PoliceCarHC0312_L_300_C_R

A 32-year-old Ridgewood man was struck and killed in a hit-and-run accident early Monday morning, police said.

Police responded to a call at about 2:52 a.m. on Fresh Pond Road between 60th Drive and Elliot Avenue where they found Karoll Grzegorczyk unconscious with trauma on his body, lying on the road. Grzegorczyk was taken to Elmhurst Hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival, according to the NYPD.

Further investigation showed that Grzegorczyk was walking on Fresh Pond Road when mid-block he entered the street between parked cars, police said. The Ridgewood resident was then struck by a dark-colored sedan, which fled the scene.

No arrests have been made and the investigation is ongoing.

 

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L’Arte del Gelato opening factory, first Queens spot in LIC


| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Photo Courtesy of Jamestown

Long Island City is getting a taste of “la dolce vita.”

L’Arte del Gelato, which has three locations in Manhattan, has stationed a cart outside The Food Box located in the Falchi Building at 31-00 47th Ave.

The cart will be serving 12 flavors of gelato on weekdays from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and will be offering a buy one, get one free gelato deal every Friday. Nine of the popular flavors will stay the same and three flavors change every Monday.

“I think this is an upcoming area,” said Francesco Realmuto, owner of L’Arte del Gelato, about deciding to open up a spot in Long Island City, the first in Queens. “I think the building is great. There are a lot of people in the area, there is a lot of new construction. I think the next couple of years we’ll see a stronger community.”

L’Arte del Gelato products are made from recipes brought from Sicily, where Realmuto is from, and feature all-natural ingredients found in either local markets or imported from Italy.

“We’re a really authentic product,” said Realmuto, a Ridgewood resident. “We’re a great product.”

The gelato cart will be in front of the Falchi Building as long as weather is permitting, according to Realmuto, and will come back in the spring.

In the next couple of weeks, Realmuto also said he plans on opening a gelato factory inside the Falchi Building. The factory will make gelato to sell to supermarkets such as Dean & DeLuca.

The Food Box is a 2,000-square-foot pop-up artisanal food fair located on the ground floor of the five-story, 657,660-square-foot, multi-tenant and mixed-use building.

Vendors within The Food Box include Karu Café, ReCaFo, Made from Scratch and Mrs. Soupy & Friends.

Last year, Jamestown announced the multi-million dollar repositioning and capital improvement program at the Falchi Building, built in 1920 as a warehouse and distribution facility. This program includes façade and lobby renovations, furniture upgrades, art installations and the introduction of food purveyors, such as L’Arte del Gelato and Artisanal Cheese.

Other Falchi Building tenants include jewelry manufacturers, government and medical offices, and media, technology and engineering companies.

 

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Ridgewood thrift shop shutting its doors


| slicata@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/ Photo by Salvatore Licata


A Second Glance, a thrift store in Ridgewood, will be closing up shop later this month but hopes to make a comeback within the neighborhood soon.

Co-owners Aaron and Jola Amrhern, both 28 and residents of Ridgewood, said their storefront will be closing Aug. 17 because their sub-lease is up. They have generated a large following in their two years of leasing, at 61-65 Metropolitan Ave., and hope to find another spot nearby to keep serving them.

“I grew up two blocks from [the store]. This neighborhood is my home,” Aaron said. “We’re looking for another spot around here and hopefully we can continue to do what we love in this community.”

Once closed, a furniture store will take up the location, which will be operated by the property owner, according to the Amrherns. But they hope to continue to sell their unique items in the neighborhood again sometime in the winter. They said they have already looked at two nearby locations, one on Fresh Pond Road and one on Myrtle Avenue, but will keep shopping around until they find the right fit.

A Second Glance is no ordinary thrift shop, according to the Amrherns, who consider it more of an antique store because of the rich history many of the items have. Among many other items, they have a pair of J.J. Slater shoes from the 1800s; similar shoes can also be found on display on the Smithsonian Institution. The Amrherns once had a $15,000 bottle of A.E. Dor cognac from 1889, of which only two were made, come through the door.

“I won’t put just anything on my shelves,” Aaron, who finds most of his items while traveling, said. “I am very selective with my stuff.”

For now, they are having sales up to 50 percent off on some items. Everything that isn’t sold by the Aug. 17 will go to their warehouse.

Once the store closes, they are going on a two-week search for new antiques and items, which according to the couple, is their vacation. They said they hope the new items they find will be on display in their new store soon.

 

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Historic Ridgewood Onderdonk House finally getting roof replacement


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Liam La Guerre


It’s finally time to raise the roof off this old house.

Work to replace the roof of the landmarked Vander Ende-Onderdonk House, the city’s oldest Dutch Colonial residence, has finally commenced after being delayed a year.

The Ridgewood site, which has been placed on the National Register of Historic Places and is a city landmark, serves as a museum in the neighborhood and hosts public and private events during the year, including weddings. It is also the home of the Greater Ridgewood Historical Society.

However, wear and tear on the more than 30-year-old roof, caused leaks during rain and after melting of large snow accumulations.

“If you were to go up to the second floor and look up you would see a lot of daylight,” said Steve Monte, a board member of the Greater Ridgewood Historical Society. “And it would only get worse.”

The Onderdonk House, named for former owners Paulus Vander Ende and Adrian Onderdonk, served as the boundary line between the towns of Newtown and Bushwick in 1769, settling a Brooklyn-Queens dispute.

In 2009, the society hosted a fundraiser to collect money for the roof replacement. And in the 2012, capital budget former Councilwoman Diana Reyna allocated $500,000 to the Greater Ridgewood Historical Society for the project. The budget for the project is $670,000, according to Community Board 5.

While the roof is being replaced, the museum is still open to the public on Saturdays and it will continue to host events. The roof replacement is scheduled to be completed by late September.

 

 

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Ridgewood coffee shop gives a helping hand to local artists


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Salvatore Licata

SALVATORE LICATA

It is not easy for local artists to get their names heard but Norma’s, a coffee shop in Ridgewood, is doing everything they can to help.

Denise Plowman and Crystal Williams started their “support local art” initiative in their coffee shop after they opened on Catalpa Avenue two years ago.

They allow the artists to promote their work, free of charge, and then give the proceeds from the sales to the artists—without taking a cut.

“It was our dream to open up Norma’s,” Plowman said. “This gives us an opportunity to help other locals’ dreams come true.”

The shop’s walls and furniture is filled with all types of creative works, ranging from jewelry, books, greeting cards and paintings to handcrafted pins and miniature aprons.

Currently, the store holds the work of about 12 different locals. Sarah Feldman, the first designer showcased in Norma’s, said the store helped to rejuvenate her jewelry business.

“I stopped making jewelry for a while but decided to set up some of my work in Norma’s when [Plowman and Williams] asked me to,” said Feldman, who now operates the jewelry website princepeacock.com. “It got me so motivated once I heard my stuff was selling. It’s a great feeling to have people come up to you in the neighborhood and say, ‘Wow, you’re the jewelry girl!’”

Plowman said more and more artists have asked to display their work just from hearing about her store’s campaign through word of mouth. She said the art has been flying off the walls and that she always gets comments about how great the pieces are.

“There’s a lot of creative people in this neighborhood but not a lot of exposure for them,” Plowman said. “I think it’s important to do this to help them grow.”

 

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The Doe Fund to help clean up Myrtle, Grand avenues


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley's Office

CHRIS BUMBACA

In an effort to beautify Queens and support job growth within District 30, Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley and The Doe Fund announced on Thursday discretionary budget funding of The Doe Fund’s Ready, Willing & Able program.

The Fund’s president and founder, George McDonald as well as other local community leaders, were also on hand for the announcement. The Doe Fund’s workers, men who were formerly incarcerated or homelessness, will take part in this year-long transitional program, and service streets and sidewalks along Myrtle and Grand avenues in communities such as Glendale, Ridgewood and Maspeth, improving cleanliness and safety throughout the community.

Crowley acquired $61,800 in funding in the current budget to fund these street-cleaning crews.

“I’m so thrilled to welcome The Doe Fund to District 30. Myrtle and Grand Avenues have been major sources of sanitation complaints for years, but thanks to The Doe Fund, residents and business owners along these commercial corridors will begin to see a big difference almost immediately,” Crowley, who also serves as Chair of the Committee on Fire and Criminal Justice, said. “This program is win-win: keeping our community clean, while simultaneously providing jobs, education, and career development services for hardworking New Yorkers trying to turn their lives around and make a positive impact.”

The crews will pick up litter and clean trash on Myrtle Avenue from Cooper Avenue to Fresh Pond Road and on Grand Avenue from 61st to 74th streets, three days a week for the next year. Clean-up on Myrtle Avenue began on July 15, and crews began cleaning Grand Avenue on July 15.

“We’re grateful and proud to join Councilmember Crowley in her commitment to her district and the vibrant communities in it,” McDonald said. “By choosing The Doe Fund’s ‘men in blue’ to service Myrtle Avenue and the surrounding area, Ms. Crowley is leading by example, providing our men the opportunity and work they need to transform their lives, while improving the cleanliness and safety of the district’s streets.”

“This is only the beginning, and I look forward to expanding this program over the next several years,” Crowley added.

 

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Two men arrested in Ridgewood attempted rape of 18-year-old


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of NYPD

Two men have been charged with attempted rape after attacking a teen in Ridgewood earlier this week, according to police.

The 18-year-old victim was walking near Putnam and Seneca avenues at about 2:50 a.m. on Wednesday when the two suspects came up behind her, and one of the men choked the girl and covered her mouth with his hand, cops said.

The second suspect tried to steal her purse, but she was able to hold on to it. The first suspect then attempted to sexually assault her, but both men fled when someone passed by them, authorities said.

The victim was taken to Woodhull Hospital where she was treated and released.

Franclin Velazquez, 21, of Brooklyn, and Jorge Maldonado, 28, of the Bronx, have both been charged with attempted rape and sexual abuse, police said. Maldonado has also been charged with assault.

 

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Pair sought in Ridgewood attempted rape of teen


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photos and video courtesy of NYPD


An 18-year-old was attacked by two men who punched and choked the girl before trying to rob and rape her in Ridgewood on Wednesday, police said.

The victim was walking near Putnam and Seneca avenues at about 2:50 a.m. when the two suspects came up behind her, according to authorities.

One of the suspects punched her in the head while the second suspect choked the teen and covered her mouth with his hand, cops said. The second suspect then tried to swipe her pocketbook, but she was able to hold on to it, cops said.

The first suspect attempted to sexually assault her, but both men fled when a passerby approached, according to police.

The victim was taken to Woodhull Medical Center  where she was treated and released.

Police describe both suspects as Hispanic, in their early 30s and 5 feet 5 inches tall. The first suspect  was last seen wearing a striped shirt, white hat, and camouflaged shorts, and had a backpack. The second suspect had a ponytail and was last seen wearing a dark colored shirt with “Aero 199″ on the left sleeve and had a backpack.

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.

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Ridgewood art center provides free space for locals and intellectually disabled


| ejankiewicz@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Eric Jankiewicz

This may start off like Williamsburg — but it ain’t.

An arts center in Ridgewood is applying for a liquor license. Okay, sounds like Williamsburg so far.

But while it wants to serve alcohol for its weekend music shows, the owners also want to make more money so that they can continue to offer free services on weekdays to the local community — especially the intellectually disabled.

“The basic logic behind this place is we’re here in the community and the community needs space so we give them space,” said Sam Hillmer, one of the owners of the venue Trans Pecos. “We believe that we can be the new model for new art spaces opening up in the community.”

Every Tuesday afternoon, The Downtown Electric band can be found practicing its music set. The group is made up of six intellectually disabled people who have been practicing in the space since Trans Pecos opened in December 2013.

“Our own facility is overcrowded and it’s not conducive to creativity,” said Taryn Harris, a worker for AHRC who supervises the group’s trip from their office in downtown Brooklyn to the venue in Ridgewood. “They’d be in a dark room. Next to a copy machine. But here it’s wonderful. It’s big and we can all make as much noise as we want to.”

On Monday, another group from the same organization that provides services for handicapped people, AHRC, uses the business to hold art programs for the intellectually disabled.

On top of providing equipment and room for the group to practice their hip-hop music, Hillmer is also putting together a large exhibition at the end of the summer that will showcase the group’s music and costumes that Christian Joy — who designs the costumes for Karen O, the lead singer of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs — is helping them design for the band’s live performance.

When AHRC isn’t using the building, several afterschool kids programs use the venue for reading programs during the week.

Harris, who is a Certified Safety Professional, explains that some days the venue gets too hot, causing them to have to cut the band’s practice short. But with the liquor license, Hillmer said there will be enough money to install an air conditioner and make the venue more tolerable for AHRC and other community groups.

The venue also houses a record label, Northern Spy, and a coffee shop is in the process of being built in the front of the building.

Hillmer and the other owner, Justin Todd Patrick, applied for a liquor license with the State Liquor Authority last week and they are also seeking the approval of Community Board 5.

Even with the intellectually disabled groups using the venue, which is equipped with expensive sound systems and a backyard for recreation, Hillmer believes that the venue is not doing enough for the community. With the help of Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley’s office, they are looking for other community organizations that would like to take advantage of the free space.

For Hillmer, “space is a commodity” in New York City and most art venues in New York City that set up in low rent neighborhoods don’t allow the locals to use the venue.

“If you do that without any degree of responsibility to the community then it’s shortsighted and irresponsible,” Hillmer said. “It’s a shame that so many spaces are dark during the day and it’s as simple as opening up your doors. We seek to not be in two different worlds.”

 

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Mini-documentary features ‘remarkable stories’ from Queens magic shop


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Michael “Six” Muldoon


America already knows he’s “Got Talent.” A new mini-documentary is now showing how one Queens magician has helped a pair of local tricksters and countless others through his shop.

“The Magic Man,” a six-minute film recently released on YouTube as part of Bacardi’s The Untameable Series, features Rogue Magic and Funshop on Queens Boulevard in Elmhurst.

The store is owned by 35-year-old Briarwood magician Roger “Rogue” Quan who appeared on the July 1 episode of “America’s Got Talent,” and also owns Rogue Magic Bar & Theatre in Rego Park.

Quan opened the store in 2000, and in addition to selling tricks, the business became like a sanctuary for local youngsters.

“I pushed these kids. If they needed money, needed a place to stay,” Quan said, he helped them out. “I created another family and they helped me out.”

Two of those people’s stories are the focus of “The Magic Man” — Ridgewood resident Michael “Six” Muldoon and Brooklyn native Devonte Rosero.

Both men have made careers out of magic after dealing with personal struggles.

At a young age, Muldoon, now 25, coped with having a sixth finger and weight issues. His Maspeth house burned downed when he was 11 and his parents separated around that time.

Muldoon found magic at about age 13, and bought his first trick from Quan’s store.

“It kind of became an addiction after that,” said Muldoon, who eventually started working at the shop.

Quan not only helped give Muldoon the confidence he needed, but also his stage name — ”Six.”

“He gave us a place to connect, to be open, to find ourselves,” Muldoon said.

After Muldoon nearly died from a ruptured spleen at 18, and was looking to give back, Rosero, who had just met the founder of Magicians Without Borders, suggested that Muldoon work with the organization.

Today, the two are still involved with the group, which travels to more than 30 countries “using magic to entertain, educate and empower.”

They also both started System 6 Magic, a company that produces playing cards and DVDs, and have each become accomplished performers and entrepreneurs.

Though he became interested in magic at an early age, in his teen years Rosero, now 24, started associating with local street gangs.

After landing in the hospital, Rosero received a call from Quan, whose shop he used to go to four or five years earlier, urging him to try out for a magic competition, he recalls in “The Magic Man.”

“If Rouge had not called me, I would be in jail or dead,” Rosero said.

The mini-documentary is not the first time Quan’s magic shop and some of the people it’s helped have been captured on film.

A full-length documentary called “The Magic Men,” featuring Rosero and another local magician, Miles Thorn, was screened at the Woodstock Film Festival in 2013. The film’s producer is trying to get it distributed for full release in New York City, according to Quan. He believes it may have been the reason the filmmakers behind the Bacardi piece came calling.

The aim of the Bacardi series is to tell “remarkable stories of irrepressible spirits from around the world.”

Some of that spirit is summed up in how Quan answers the question about why he does what he does in the documentary.

“Why do I do it? Because I want people to believe. That’s what magic’s all about.”

 

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