Nov. 27, Staff Report
Ethel Plimack, a Sunnyside Gardens resident, turned 104 today and the neighborhood came to her 46th Street home to wish her well.
At noon, Ethel’s neighbor Patricia Dorfman distributed birthday candles to the well-wishes and knocked on her front door. When Ethel opened her door, about 120 people cheered.
The mob sang Happy Birthday and Ethel expressed her gratitude with a broad smile and a few soft words.
Dorfman, the organizer, said that the occasion was particularly touching. This was the second time she had organized the event– the first time being when Ethel turned 103.
Many people who attended viewed Ethel as an inspiration. “Do you think you will reach 104?” one resident asked a friend. The friend replied: “I will be lucky to make 64.”
Nov. 25, By Michael Florio
The third annual “Taste of Woodside” was its biggest one yet.
The event, which was hosted by Woodside on the Move, featured 14 restaurants and a crowd of about 120 attendees.
The goal of the event, which took place last Thursday, was to provide attendees with the ability to sample each restaurant’s food so they would be able to get an appreciation of the quality of Woodside’s cuisine.
“We had people from Manhattan, the Bronx, Brooklyn and all over,” said Woodside on the Move Executive Director Adrian Bordoni, who held the event at at St. Sebastian’s School auditorium.
Bordoni said the oysters and clams from Murphy’s Lobster Grill (48-20 Skillman Ave) were once again popular items. A new Woodside restaurant, Casa Del Chef (39-06 64th St), offered pumpkin soup with Parmesan whip cream on top , which Bordoni said was loved by all.
Meanwhile, Takesushi (43-46 42nd Street) chef Robin Kawada was on site making sushi for those in attendance.
“That was a big, big hit,” Bordoni said referring to Takesushi. “People were really impressed [watching him make it] and it was delicious.”
Red Ribbon Bakeshop (65-02 Roosevelt Ave) and Engeline’s Restaurant & Bakeshop (58-28 Roosevelt Ave) were two Filipino bakeries that helped bring variety to the event.
“We were happy to have Filipino businesses well represented,” Bordoni said.
Bordoni said there were also Irish, Italian, Bolivian, American and Japanese restaurants on site.
“People were definitely happy with the diverse selection,” he said.
Woodside on the Move introduced a new feature this year, a photo exhibit by Rachel Mintz, called The Woodsider. The exhibit was hung around the auditorium and featured photos of a variety of Woodside businesses.
“The exhibit celebrates the hard work and services that businesses supply to the community,” Bordoni said.
The Taste of Woodside continues to grow. Last year about 80 people attended and about 11 restaurants participated. However, that event was held in a much smaller venue at the Big Six Towers.
“The location helped because it was a much bigger space,” he said.
Nov. 24, By Christian Murray
A Jackson Height’s man who drove into five people while they were sitting in a bus shelter on Northern Boulevard (by 48th Street) in February was sentenced last week to two years in prison on charges related to leaving the scene of the accident, according to the Queens District Attorney’s office.
Luis Andrade, 32, was sentenced to two years after taking a plea deal in October when he admitted his guilt to assault in the first degree. However, in taking the plea other charges such as “leaving the scene of an incident without reporting serious physical injury” were dropped.
Andrade, who was an unlicensed driver according to the criminal complaint, struck five people—including an 8-year-old girl—at around 7:30 pm on Saturday, February 1. He destroyed the bus shelter and left the 8-year-old girl with a fractured skull and a woman with a broken femur and tibia. The others were taken to area hospitals with minor injuries.
Andrade then fled the scene and ditched his white 2003 Mazda outside 37-59 61st Street. The police found the vehicle with a shattered windshield and partially torn-off bumper..
Andrade was also sentenced to a year and a half of post-release supervision, according to the district attorney’s office.
Nov. 23, By Christian Murray
Expect a holiday gift guide – promoting Sunnyside’s small businesses – to arrive in the mail any day now.
Sunnyside Shines Business Improvement District, with the help of LaGuardia Community College students, has produced a 10-page brochure that showcases what 22 local stores have to offer as well as the importance of shopping locally. The promotion also ties into Small Business Saturday, a day when shoppers are expected to buy from smaller stores following the big-box binge on black Friday.
The BID has printed 30,000 guides and will be mailing 18,000 of them to the zip code 11104 and certain sections of Woodside. The remaining guides will be distributed this Saturday when a special event is held at Bliss Plaza (underneath the 46th train station) to kickoff Small Business Saturday and the holiday season.
The event, which will take place on Nov. 29 between 12:00 pm and 1 pm, will feature free giveaways and live music from the Sunnyside Social Club, a local jazz group.
“I am delighted that the BID has produced a holiday gift guide,” said Czarinna Andres, owner of Bing’s Hallmark. “Every bit of publicity helps local businesses.”
Andres is offering a coupon in the guide that offers shoppers a discount. Stores such as Avalon Florist and Red Wing Shoes are also providing discounts.
Maria Torres-Springer, Commissioner of the NYC Department of Small Business Services, was in Sunnyside last week and spoke about the importance of residents shopping locally during the holiday season.
Springer said that 20-30 percent of sales for small businesses take place during this period. She said that it is important to have promotions like these to help them compete with the large online retailers and bigger stores. She added that the marketing campaigns conducted by the 70 BIDs across the city are helping smaller businesses– including in this neighborhood.
“Sunnysiders understand the importance of shopping locally, but we wanted to make it even easier by publishing the gift guide and promoting local businesses on Small Business Saturday,” said Rachel Thieme, executive director of Sunnyside Shines.
Event: Small Business Saturday kickoff
Date: Nov. 29
Time: 12 pm – 1pm
Nov. 21, By Christian Murray
Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer and Community Board 2 have started the process to name a street after Luke Adams, the long-time Sunnysider who passed away about two weeks ago.
Van Bramer said shortly after Adams’ death several people approached him and wanted a street named after him. Adams, who lived in Sunnyside for nearly 40 years, was known throughout the community for his work with the Sunnyside Chamber of Commerce, Sunnyside/Woodside Lions Club and SunnysideArtists.
“It was no surprise that everyone wanted a street named after him,” Van Bramer said.
“Luke was so involved in the neighborhood—and on a consistent basis—for the better part of 30 years,” Van Bramer said.
The community board is still deciding what street should be named after him. It has narrowed it down to two streets: 46th Street (between Queens Blvd and Greenpoint Avenue) and 43rd Street/47th Avenue where he lived.
The street would be named “Luke Adams Way,” an apt named for someone who was known as having strong opinions.
“I think there is more support for 46th Street,” Van Bramer said, who has to get the city council to sign off on it. However, “I am going to defer that decision to the community and those people closest to him.”
Patricia Dorfman, who was a very close friend of Adams, said that she was initially an advocate for 43rd Street but now views 46th Street by the arch to be more appropriate.
“His business was located on 46th street,” Dorfman said. She said that he was very involved in maintaining the arch in its early years and his name should be more prominently placed.
Van Bramer said if a decision is made quickly he would be able to get it through the city council shortly. If that is the case, we could have an unveiling in spring.”
Nov. 20, By Christian Murray
A new commanding officer has been appointed to the 108 Police Precinct, which covers Sunnyside, Woodside and Long Island City.
Captain John Travaglia, who has spent most of his career in Queens, will be taking over the command following the departure of Capt. Brian Hennessy.
This will be Travaglia’s first time as a commanding officer. He was most recently the executive officer at the 114th Precinct in Astoria. Prior to that, he was an executive officer at the 104th Precinct that covers Maspeth, Middle Village and Ridgewood.
Travaglia takes the top job at a time when Sunnyside has been experiencing an uptick in burglaries and other property-related crime. However, Astoria too has seen a jump in burglaries recently.
Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer said that he has scheduled a meeting with Travaglia and has heard good things about him. “We look forward to meeting him as we all work to keep the neighborhood safe.”
Nov. 20, By Michael Florio
A fire broke out in a Sunnyside apartment building last night.
The blaze took place on the fifth floor at 41-36 51st Street. The FDNY received a call just before 7 pm and the fire was brought under control by 7:30 pm, according to the FDNY.
The fire was contained to one apartment and one person, believed to be the tenant, was taken to a local hospital with serious, but non-life threatening injuries. The victim was believed to have been unconscious when he was removed from his apartment.
A neighboring tenant, who didn’t want to be named, showed up during the fire. She said the fire was first noticed by a passerby, who saw flames shooting out the window.
“This was traumatizing for everyone,” the neighboring tenant said. “Everyone here was freaked out.”
The apartment that caught fire is completely destroyed. The apartment above may have been damaged as well, and the apartment below suffered severe water damage.
The apartment that caught fire was rented by a younger man, according to a neighboring tenant, who moved into the building earlier this year. He was known for having parties.
“We [the occupants] were worried something like this would happen,” the neighbor said.
The FDNY is still investigating what caused the fire.
Nov. 19, By Christian Murray
The police have released another photo of one of the two men suspected of beating and robbing an 81-year-old Sunnysider at the Chase Bank branch at 46-10 Queens Blvd last month.
The two men allegedly approached the victim inside the Chase bank ATM area at about 9:30 am on Sunday, October 26, before punching him in the face and removing $100 and his debit card from his pocket. The victim was William Eichhorn, who has lived in the Phipps Houses for the past 50 years.
Anyone with information is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477)
For previous coverage, click here
Nov. 18, By Christian Murray
The frozen yogurt store 4 Squared Flavors has closed for winter and will reopen March 1, according to co-owner Khalil Nayl,
Nayl said that landlord is supportive of the store and is by providing discounted rent during the winter months.
Nayl’s announcement came less than an hour after he was asked why the store had been closed all month.
“We are exploring our options,” Nayl said at about 3:30 pm, when asked whether the 45-12 Greenpoint Avenue store had closed for good. “I will get back to you when we have made a final decision.”
Nayl had been asked the question several times during the month and provided the same response.
The store has had a tough go of it from the get-go. It was supposed to open in October 2013 but the owners had issues with the contractor and it opened in March.
Nevertheless, Nayl is hoping to get the support of Sunnysiders when he reopens. He still plans to open other 4 Squared Flavors in other locations.
The Sunnyside store is spacious—with a lounge area that has couches. There is also a special area where iPads are provided, so people can surf the web while they eat their yogurt.
Meanwhile, in other news, Mediterraneo, the popular pizzeria located at 46-21 Queens Blvd, closed at the end of last month. The owner closed for personal reasons, according to sources.
In other news, Safra Bistro, a Turkish restaurant located on the corner of 43rd Avenue and 43rd Street, is up for sale. The restaurant, which opened a year ago, is on the market for $139,000. The owner is seeking a quick sale.
Commissioner Trottenberg announces DOT anticipates reducing Queens Blvd speed limit to #25MPH the end of the year. — NYC DOT (@NYC_DOT) November 14, 2014