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Children Clean Up, Draw and Dance along Barnett Avenue

Photo: QueensPost

May 9, 2014 Staff Report

More than 100 children participated in a neighborhood cleanup and arts event on Barnett Avenue on Saturday.

The event was the first “Make Your Mark” event organized by Re-Create Queens, a newly-formed arts and youth alliance.

The children swept, picked up, danced, drew and planted marigolds along the short industrial strip between 37th and 39th Avenues.

The “Make Your Mark” concept stems from premise that children can be taught to make their mark in the world by tending to public space and appreciating art.

The event drew many of Sunnyside’s local community groups, including: artspaceQ, an all-arts alliance that was formed earlier this year in Sunnyside; Sunnyside Artists, a visual fine arts group; Sunnyside Woodside Boys & Girls Club, a group that focuses on youth recreation, learning and sports; Unity Stage Company, a Sunnyside-based performing arts group; and Unplug Kids, which provides creative classes for children.

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Patricia Dorfman

ny1 came and ran something. anyone see it?

jean claude, u sound knowledgeable! we are about to roll out out something like that shortly independently from 2 grps. wanna help? email please offlist to [email protected]

nancy reported that the bldg owners were great and up for the hordes and planting. as far as i know, no towering structure planned. that corner was not the strip mainly needing a spruce up, which was the area closer to and inside the tunnel. nice that kids from all over sunnyside and woodside came to help! sunnyside artists took a lot of pix of the event now up on facebook, for anyone interested

how did great community clean up go on 43rd ave?

sunnysideposthatesme has to be the funniest moniker on sp.

thank you, deniz!


Thanks, Patricia, for your description of the event – it sounds like it was lots of fun! All the best 🙂

Kenny Medrano

Love the fact that our respective organizations were able to come together to make this happen.
Let this be the start to many more great events.
And of course, much respect to Nancy Kleaver leading the way!



Jean Claude Van Bram

How about Children design, code and build Apps along Barnett Avenue using Java and Objective C. That will look better on their resumes.


as long as you don’t pay em and call it a lesson then no labor laws are broken eh?

Take It Easy

@Strange That is a great point. I don’t think they gave a thin dime.

But they sure will suck all the money and peace out of this place if they can. Developers are the outreach unit of Cold Bankersheart. Consider the greedy ass who made money for years off poor artists, who were the only ones talented and desperate enough to spend money on the place while the “owner” aka Super Leech, waited for the right time to cash in. While I think he should be stood in front of a brick wall and shot with thousands of paint balls, Justice’s scales always balance.


It seems funny having kids clean up a nasty million dollar building the is being sold for development. It is nice to have things for kids, but I hope the building’s owner gave big money.


What a great event! The kids had such a great time in so many ways. Planting, dancing, drawing, acting, and beading! Thanks to everyone who came out.

Patricia Dorfman

Yes, Deniz.

The event was beautifully organized by Nancy Kleaver, executive director of Re-Create Queens, who got all the local youth and arts groups together for this fun event and ran the show. Go check out the marigolds and hostas on 48th Street next to the former Pulse Fitness building.

Also participating was the multi-talented Judson Jones and his troupe from Theatre East, Arts and Craftsman Supply, Greening Western Queens, and big thanks to Ottomanelli Best Burgers in the world, and delicious Uncle Jimmy’s Pizza.

Kenny Medrano had the idea to apply for a Love Your Block grant from Citizens Committee or NYC, which Nancy applied for and got! All involved spent their own funds, too. The concept was that kids did not have to draw murals or graffiti to make a mark on the world, but could create art or tidy up an area to make it a peaceful place to pass by and dream and think.

Thank you to the 108 Precinct for letting kids “tour” the patrol car, which was a big favorite among parents, and Jimmy Van Bramer’s office for helping get a portion of the street closed to keep the children safe!


I think the address is supposed to be on Barnett between 37th and 39th Streets, no?


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