Tag Archives: Ridgewood

Man dies after fleeing police in Ridgewood


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

police car

Updated 2:53 p.m.

A 46-year-old man died following a police chase in Ridgewood Wednesday afternoon after he told officers that he was having trouble breathing, authorities said.

The man, Daniel Levitt, was sitting on a motorized scooter in front of a home on Grand View Avenue at about 2:10 p.m. when a sergeant and police officer spotted him, cops said.

After seeing the cops, the man, who had an active arrest warrant relating to a petit larceny incident, fled down Grandview Avenue in the wrong direction, according to police. The officers began to follow the man in their unmarked vehicle until he collided into the side view mirror of an SUV near Grand View Avenue and Bleecker Street.

He then fell off his scooter and tried to run, but the cops nabbed him down the block.

The man then told officers that he had a pre-existing medical condition and was having difficulty breathing, cops said. He also told them that he had medication for his condition and the officers then administered the medication.

According to published reports, he was asthmatic and also had a pacemaker. When he couldn’t breath, he asked the officers to administer his inhaler.

At that point, the man stood up and moments later he became unconscious. His handcuffs were then removed and the officer began chest compressions while EMS was called, authorities said.

He was taken to Wyckoff Heights Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.

The medical examiner is determining the cause of death and the Internal Affairs Bureau is investigating the incident.

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Intellectually disabled man missing from Ridgewood since Friday found


| slicata@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of Stephanie Almache

The family of an intellectually disabled man who went missing in Ridgewood Friday night received good news Monday when he was found safe.

“We are all so happy. We are all crying with happiness. We are thankful he was finally found,” Stephanie Almache, the cousin of the missing man, Geovanny Gonzalez, told The Courier as she was on her way to be reunited with him at New York Hospital Queens.

Gonzalez, 26, was last seen on the corner of Grove Street and Wycoff Avenue on the border of Ridgewood and Bushwick on October 3 at around 6 p.m.

Gonzalez, who is on vacation in America from Ecuador and only speaks Spanish, has the mental capacity of a 10-year-old and also suffers from epilepsy, which he has not had his medication for since he went missing.

“We are all really worried and want him back,” Almache said shortly before he was found. “He is a great guy and a really good friend. We are all just devastated.”

Family members said that Gonzalez was having dinner when he suddenly ran off. They chased him through the streets but eventually lost sight of him near the M train stop on Grove Street and Wycoff Avenue.

Because he was here for two months this year, prior to this vacation, he vaguely knows the cityscape and may have tried to make his way into Manhattan, which is where he came from earlier that day, Almache said.

According to police, Gonzalez was found in good condition. Almache and authorities did not immediately have more details on how he was located.

-With additional reporting by Cristabelle Tumola

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Local resident starts writing group in Ridgewood


| slicata@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Salvatore Licata

A writer’s struggles can be daunting, but a Ridgewood writer hopes to help locals overcome difficulties with their literary labors.

Amy Wilson, who moved to the neighborhood from Michigan in July, founded Ridgewood Writers so local authors could offer each other support.

“I’m aware of how difficult it is for people to pursue their own writing careers,” Wilson said. “This will give myself and the members of the group a new perspective on our work and can help us grow as writers.”

The group was started at the beginning of September and already has seven members. They are having their first meeting this Saturday at 2:30 p.m. at The Spot, a restaurant located on Madison Avenue and Fresh Pond Road.

Wilson, 26, said that she already noticed how tight-knit Ridgewood is and believes the group would be a great way for her to get more involved and in tune with the community along with helping her begin a more serious writing experience.

“My personal goal for the group is to get a deeper connection to Ridgewood and grow a support network when writing,” Wilson said. “I am still working on a lot of different things and this group will give me the accountability I need to keep writing.”

She has written novels and poetry and is hoping to start a compilation of essays that will be based on her experiences.

Wilson said that between work and life she has yet to attempt to publish her work, but she is hoping that this group will help her and all of the other members get published.

She hopes that as they grow, the group will be able to work with local visual artists and start their own collection of writings and arts about Ridgewood.

Wilson encourages writers of all skill levels to become members and hopes to work with writers of varying styles.

“Don’t be intimidated to join the group based on your level of writing skills,” Wilson noted. “I want people to have a fun experience and want any writer who wishes for a more serious path in writing to join.”

To find out more about the Ridgewood Writers group, contact Amy Wilson at ridgewoodwriters@gmail.com.

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Suspect arrested in Ridgewood stabbing, carjacking of livery cab driver


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photo courtesy of NYPD

Updated 2:35 p.m.

Police have arrested a man suspected of stabbing a 30-year-old livery cab driver and then stealing his car in Ridgewood last week.

Kenneth Suden, 41, of Ridgewood, has been charged with attempted murder, robbery, assault, and criminal possession of a weapon in connection with the brutal Sept. 25 attack, according to the Queens district attorney’s office.

The victim, Fernando Crespin-Santos, was dispatched to the Cypress Hills section of Brooklyn, where, at about 1:10 a.m. that day, he picked up Suden and was asked to drive him to Ridgewood, according to officials.

Once in the neighborhood, and several blocks from Suden’s home, Suden allegedly held a knife to Crespin-Santos’ throat and demanded money, prosecutors said. He is then accused of stabbing Crespin-Santos repeatedly in the arms, legs and chest before taking off in his vehicle.

Crespin-Santos was able to flee from the car before Suden drove off and was found near 70th Avenue and 60th Street, officials said. He was taken to Elmhurst Hospital, suffering from a collapsed lung, a severed stomach and a severed liver, the district attorney said.

The car was discovered illegally parked a short time later in Ridgewood not far from where Crespin-Santos was found, reports said.

The day of the incident, police released a photo of Suden, looking to question him in the stabbing and carjacking. He was arrested after he walked into a local hospital on Monday and hospital police recognized him and alerted authorities, police said.

Suden has also been charged with committing a knifepoint robbery at a Ridgewood grocery store on Putnam Avenue the night before the stabbing of the livery cab driver, according to the district attorney.

As of Tuesday afternoon, Suden was currently awaiting arraignment in Queens Criminal Court on a criminal complaint in each case. If convicted in both, he faces up to 50 years in prison.

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Man wanted in Ridgewood assault of 82-year-old woman


| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Video courtesy of NYPD

Police have released surveillance footage of a man suspected of punching an elderly woman as she was walking in Ridgewood Thursday morning.

On Sept. 25 at about 6:35 a.m. the 82-year-old victim was walking near the intersection of Myrtle Avenue and Seneca Street when the suspect came up behind her and struck her to the side of her face with a closed fist, causing bruising and swelling, according to cops.

The suspect is described as a Hispanic or black man, between 25 to 30 years old and 5 feet 7 inches tall. He was wearing blue jeans and a black T-shirt with a design in white.

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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Top vegan-friendly food places in Queens


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

Photos via Rose Valley Cakes Facebook page / Courtesy of Johnny Solo

BY ECLEEN CARABALLO 

PETA recently declared New York City as 2014’s “Most Vegan-Friendly City” for its numerous establishments that offer veggie lovers an array of options. We’ve compiled this list of food places in Queens that offer delicious cuisine along with vegan-friendly choices.

Co Co Lin Vegetarian House
64-19 Fresh Pond Rd., Ridgewood
718-416-1688
cocolins.com

This restaurant houses a wide array of vegetarian options that are made from a fuse of Chinese and Thai seasonings and flavors. Whether craving a smoothie or a simple vegan-friendly meal, Co Co Lin seems to have the right amount of options for both meat and veggie lovers alike.

Ginger Organic
37-01 30th Ave., Astoria
718-777-0626
facebook.com/GingerOrganicAstoria

Connected to Astoria’s Grand Café, this organic juice and smoothie shop just opened a few months ago. The establishment offers all-organic smoothies and cold-pressed juices bottled on site, salads, kale chips and much more, which is all 100 percent vegan. Ginger also serves up organic liquors, wines and champagnes. Juices come packaged in recycled cardboard six-pack beer containers.

Happy Buddha
135-37 37th Ave., Flushing
718-358-0079
happybuddha.com

This veggie-loving restaurant in downtown Flushing earned a place on SuperVegan’s list of “Top 5 Vegetarian Restaurants in Queens” with a nice list of reviews from customers who are pleased with the vegetarian option in the community. Happy Buddha aims to create a peaceful environment for guests, and create a fusion of “innovative vegetarian cuisine, Zen surroundings, and respect for all living things.”

Rose Valley Cakes
134-03 Liberty Ave., South Richmond Hill
718- 523-2253
rosevalleycakes.com

This bakery meets plenty of dietary needs with their unique focus on vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free baked goods. With impressive reviews and complex cake decorations, it has earned a 4-1/2 star rating on Yelp, and claims to be able to create “any confectionery creation you can think of.” Although it does offer specialty cakes of all sorts, it also sells bakery items that are available daily.

Simple Veggie Cuisine
95-26 Queens Blvd., Rego Park
718-830-0808
sveggie.com

Simple Veggie Cuisine keeps it simple with a wide array of options on their menu, and a promising amount of good reviews on Yelp. This restaurant offers Chinese food, with vegan options that are moderately priced and seemingly loved by the public.

Smile of the Beyond
8614 Parsons Blvd, Jamaica
718-739-7453
smileofthebeyond.com

This vegetarian diner located in Jamaica was established in 1972, making it the first vegetarian diner in New York City. The diner offers classic and unique breakfast and lunch items and vegan-friendly options, which include everything from a good hot cup of organic coffee to a tofu scramble and more.

The Oneness-Fountain Heart
157-19 72nd Ave., Flushing
718-591-3663
oneness-fountain-heart.com

This vegetarian restaurant has been in Flushing since 1998, and is committed to creating an environment where you can “enjoy food that nourishes the body, heart and soul.” With unique options on their menu, like Cashew Nut Paella, it has earned an impressive list of reviews on Yelp, and was mentioned in the Long Island Restaurant Review as well as The Restaurant Fairy and others.

Veggie Castle II
132-09 Liberty Ave., South Richmond Hill
718-641-8342

This hidden treasure in South Richmond Hill is a grab-and-go go-to for many veggie lovers because of its vegan-friendly options and juice bar that offers a well-reviewed green juice, as well as smoothies.

What do you think are the top vegan-friendly food places in Queens? Let us know by commenting below. 

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Passenger stabs livery cab driver, steals car in Ridgewood: police  


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

POLICE TAPE

Updated 8:35 p.m.

Police are searching for a man who allegedly stabbed a 30-year-old livery cab driver several times before driving off with his car in Ridgewood early Thursday morning.

The driver was dispatched to Hemlock Street and Jamaica Avenue in Brooklyn, where he picked up the suspect at about 1:10 a.m., and was asked to drive the man to Ridgewood, police said.

Around 1:35 a.m. a witness saw the livery cab hit a parked car then speed off at 69th Avenue and Fresh Pond Road, cops said. A short time later and just a few blocks away, the driver was found near 70th Avenue and 60th Street with stab wounds to the chest, arm and hands. His passenger had allegedly taken off with his 2012 gray Toyota Camry after the two got into an argument and the suspect stabbed him.

The cabbie was transported to Elmhurst Hospital, where he is listed in critical but stable condition.

livery cab

Photo courtesy of NYPD

Police have released a photo of a man wanted for questioning in connection to the stabbing and stolen car, 41-year-old Kenneth Suden, and describe him as 5 feet 7 inches tall and 180 pounds. The vehicle has a New York registration number of T634876C.

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

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Middle Village, local 10-year-old featured in soon-to-be-released movie


| ctumola@queenscourier.com

Photos by Kelsey Bennett

Middle Village is ready for its close-up.

The neighborhood is the backdrop for a soon-to-be-released film focusing on an ex-mafia captain (“capo”) as he comes to grips with how his former life has changed after spending the last 20 years in federal prison. The movie also features a 10-year-old actress from the neighborhood, Olivia Panepinto, in her debut role.

Director, writer and producer David Rodriguez was inspired to make “Once Upon a Time in Queens” after seeing a program on the Investigation Discovery channel about an FBI agent who went undercover in the Gambino crime family in the Bronx. There was one member who was recently released from prison and came home to reclaim his old rackets, but most of the people from his former mob life were dead, in prison or informants.

“In his mind it was still the early 90s … where you could still survive in this world and be untouchable, and what he didn’t realize was that it was the opposite,” Rodriguez said.

In the film, Paul Sorvino plays Joseph Scoleri, who was sent away for racketeering and conspiracy to commit murder. After his release, he goes to live at his Middle Village home, with his 43-year-old daughter Rita (Renee Props). In addition to leaving his gangster lifestyle behind and being forbidden to speak to former associates, Scoleri must reestablish his relationship with his daughter and come to terms with how she has been living her life.

He also becomes reacquainted with his neighbor Bobby DiBianco, played by Michael Rapaport, whom he last saw as a teenager.

Bobby now has a family of his own and runs his father’s deli, and agrees to help run errands for the ailing Scoleri. The character represents a progressive, professional lifestyle, instead of a wannabe gangster, according to Rodriguez.

“He speaks to [Scoleri] like nobody has ever spoken to him,” Rodriguez said. “That is another shocker to him.”

Part of Bobby’s family man image is his daughter Liv, played by Olivia.

Olivia

The current fifth-grader landed the part after three impressive auditions. She was so good that her part was changed from a boy to a girl.

“She really knocked it out of the park in the audition,” Rodriguez said. The part was also changed to make the film less male-centric and more heartfelt.

Olivia’s dream of acting started at two years old when she was watching TV and asked, “How can I be in the box?”

After a trip to Los Angeles where she visited the Hollywood Walk of Fame and asked her parents how she could “get one of those stars,” Olivia started taking acting lessons, and landed her first part in “Once Upon a Time in Queens.”

“It was like my dream come true,” she said. “It was even more cool that we shot it in my neighborhood.”

Filming was somewhat challenging, but mostly fun, Olivia said, especially when Sorvino would sing opera between takes.

The young actress has also appeared in a web show called “Mona in Manhattan” with her older sisters, Alessandra, 14, and Emmanuela, 12, and will be filming a movie with them in LA this January called “Marilyn Monroe Zombie Hunter.”

Olivia  during a scene at a Middle Village deli with actor Michael Rapaport (far right).

Olivia during a scene at a Middle Village deli with actor Michael Rapaport (far right).

Olivia’s father Ignazio was also involved in “Once Upon a Time in Queens,” receiving a co-executive producer credit for helping find most the locations for the film, which was mainly shot in Middle Village and Ridgewood. Some scenes were filmed at Juniper Valley Park and Village Gourmet on Eliot Avenue, a stand-in for Bobby’s deli.

Though the film was shown at several film festivals around the country last year, including the 2013 Austin Film Festival, its official premiere, with its new name, will take place this Wednesday in the East Village.

In February, Lionsgate purchased the movie, which was originally called “Last I Heard,” and renamed it “Once Upon a Time in Queens.”

It also will have a Los Angeles premiere on Thursday, which will be followed by a seven-day theatrical run in the city. On Nov. 11 it will be available on DVD, iTunes, Netflix and Amazon Instant Video.

Rodriguez hopes audiences “see the film for what it is.”

“I don’t want people to see the movie and think it’s a mob movie,” he said. “It’s a slice of New York life.”

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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.

QAIposter6

“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.

Paint_3

“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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