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Pastels, florals mark spring fashion

‘GRACE KELLY COLORS’ by Victoria Zunitch

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pring blooms are ready to burst in bold patterns and creamy pastels, not just in our tiny Queens strip gardens and brick-house flower boxes but also splashed across freshly styled women’s dresses and yes, the neckties of fashion-forward men. “Pastels is huge. Floral dresses is huge,” said Jacqueline Quinn, a Long Island City fashion designer. Quinn is creative director for the Sara Emanuel fashion house, sells her own line of clothing and accessories and works as a stylist and fashion consultant for celebrities. She recently consulted on and judged a “Design for Brad Smith” competition for Philadelphia Eagles wide receiver Brad Smith and dressed 2013 Grammy winner Billy Vera, as well as others for the 2012 and 2013 Grammies. This year’s spring f lorals are bold placement prints, as opposed to the familiar all-over pattern that displays evenly dispersed flowers, Quinn said. Placement prints are f loral patterns that are repeated every 36 inches when printed on cloth. Shoppers might find a dress or top that places a swath of floralpatterned fabric in a section along the top and repeats the pattern at the hem, or runs the flowers along the side of the garment, for example. “Dresses will be a key item for the wardrobe,” this spring, Quinn said. She recommends wearing this year’s dresses with a flat pump. This year’s color palette? Think

Italian sorbet. “What I’d call the Grace Kelly colors,” Quinn said. Washed-out pink and soft baby blue are sure to be two commonly spotted colors. They’ve already arrived at retailers such as Ann Taylor Loft and Banana Republic. One look Quinn likes is a washed-out denim legging with a soft baby blue lace inset panel. Despite this trend toward quiet colors, there’s still a way to put together a “Look at me!” outfit and stay fashionable. “One of the things that’s fun to do is pick a shocking color” for accessories, Quinn said. One of her suggestions: a vibrant orange or lime-green purse or belt would add some spark to a pale pastel outfit. If you don’t have anything riotous on hand, just make sure your accessories do not get all “matchymatchy” with the rest of your outfit. Peaceful accommodation is no friend of the fashionable this year. Make sure your purse and shoes get into an argument with your dress. Speaking of arguments, the trend for hemlines is short. No, long. “Hemlines are ver y shor t,” Quinn said, short for spring and even shorter for summer. But stores are expected to stock clothes for demure moods as well, courtesy of the 1950s. One coveredup option is to go long with an afternoon-tea-length dress or puffy skirt, perfect for keeping your knees to yourself or protecting those gams from ultraviolet rays. Another fully clothed option is the Audrey Hepburn look. Quinn

Good boy! Great Dane Faye keeps his paws off the Sara Emanuel dresses as Kate Potter and Henriett Barabas horse around with him a bit, while Jacqueline Quinn, creative director for the Sara Emanuel Collection, shows a stylish clutch from her own line in her LIC home studio. PHOTO, RIGHT, BY VICTORIA ZUNITCH

envisions a pairing of narrow cigarette pants with either a soft knit or retro sleeveless structured top that is cut to fit over the waist and has a prominent darted bust. Retro lace embellishment is also a trend, Quinn said. Rihanna is wearing the style on the cover of the March issue of Vogue in an abbreviated top made of a substantial black lace fabric. Though the cut reveals as much hip as any casual observer would need to see, the lace defies the ephemeral stereotype usually evoked when we think “lacy.” Instead, the singer is clothed in a feminine yet powerfully substantial garment that stands up to her rock-star image. Teens, as always, are likely to take advantage of the full range of options, as many fearlessly express themselves through fashion as a route to identity formation. Glamour magazine recommends in an online piece that a skin-showing boxy crop top could be paired with a tea-length skirt to make a gal look taller. “Crop tops are really big,” and the 13-to-17-year-old set can easily indulge in the look, maybe paired with some high-waisted pants, Quinn said. High-waisted pants are cut in an unbroken line from above the tummy to the ankle in order to elongate the leg, and the 43-to-97 set might easily remember the look, maybe f rom their ow n 1970s wardrobes. For men, perhaps the last remaining male-only garment or accessory is the necktie (though some gents are taking to pocket handkerchiefs again). This year, however, ties take inspiration from women’s styles, especially for casual looks and younger, more fashionable men, according to Nicholas Sackett, a partner with Bill Mountain in the Mountain and Sackett necktie company of Long Island City. Mountain and Sackett does private-label manufacturing and also sells ties directly to customers online and through stores. “The printed fabrics are making a big comeback,” Sackett said. That means fancy designs such as bold florals, in concert with the women’s trend. These patterns will be seen on cotton and linen ties, fabrics that easily allow for color and pattern in the design. The men’s f lorals are not a demure and ladylike version of the women’s prints but equally bold and virile. Liberty prints, an English brand similar to the strongly flamboyant women’s f lorals of Laura

Roses are red ... and you couldn’t be blue in this dress from the Sara Emanuel line, modeled by Kate Potter. PHOTOS BY DELLA BASS / COURTESY THE LANE STYLE HOUSE Ashley, will be seen, Sackett said. “There is a relation to the women’s f loral prints,” Sackett said. Fashion currents emanate from the European fashion shows, he said, and in recent years trends have started to cross over from women’s to men’s styles. “Another thing that has occurred in recent years is that the men’s business has become more like the women’s business in that there are multiple fashion trends going on at the same time,” Sackett said. He said this could mean preppy vineyard vine prints on the East Coast or a Brooklyn hipster look elsewhere. “The men’s industry is able to support different design concepts.” “The printed tie appeals more to younger people who are looking to wear ties outside of the traditional way,” Sackett said. For more formal outfits, neckties made of textured fabrics such as raw or crude yarns will offer a fresh option. Some of the textured ties coming out now are made of English Noile and Indian Matka, a crude yarn with slubs, he added. “The textured fabrics, I think that’s an evolution of the dressy

look that’s now giving a little more creativity to the repp stripe, which has been the mainstay of the traditional world,” Sackett said. If you’re out trend-spotting, look for a tie made of a textured fabric on a businessman running to a meeting at the Citicorp Center and a loud f lor a l-pr i nt t ie on a 20-something sipping iced chai on a Friday afternoon at MoMA PS1’s M. Wells dinette. Even those who pay little attention to neckties might notice, as fashions in neckwear have not changed much for quite a while. “The business has been predominantly jacquards in neckties for quite some years,” Sackett said. The variety and vibrancy of the spring necktie fashions may turn out to be a bit of a coming-out party for the necktie business, which Sackett says has been evolving since the 1980s. That decade, with its yellow “power tie” concept, stands out as an incredibly homogeneous time for the industry. Today it’s different. “It’s becoming, and continuing to become, even more, a broad spectrum of design concepts,” he said. Q

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Queens spaces for fun & relaxation

A DAY AT THE PARK by Mark Lord

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Garden, New York Hall of Science and the recently expanded Queens Museum. The zoo, operated by the Wildlife Conservation Society, exhibits North American animals on naturalistic grounds, allowing unusual intimacy between animals and visitors. Its Children’s Farm offers exhibitions of domestic animals. The borough’s keystone park is its largest and busiest. Walk or drive through the park on any summerlike day and you’ll likely find plenty of folks engaged in activities ranging from baseball, soccer, football and basketball to bicycling, running, cricket and even kayaking. An indoor Olympic-size pool is available to members of the Recreation Center of the Department of Parks and Recreation. The park is accessible from the Grand Central Parkway, Van Wyck Expressway and local streets. The borough’s second largest park, at approximately 657 acres, is Alley Pond Park, which spans Douglaston to Oakland Gardens and includes the Alley Pond Environmental Center, a year-round education destination for school groups and individuals. The park’s adventure program teaches participants how to canoe, fish and enjoy a natural setting without leaving the city. T he pa rk of fer s g l i m p s e s i nt o New York’s geologic past, its colonial history and its cur rent conservation efforts. The park also features an obstacle course with rock climbing, a driving range and a mini-golf course. And it has a generous number of playHighland Park is a great spot for walking, grounds and barbecue jogging or cycling in extreme southwestern areas. Entrances are on Queens, right on the Brooklyn border. Springfield Boulevard PHOTO BY MICHAEL FLORIO and Union Turnpike.

ur ing the seemingly endless winter of 2014, you’ve undoubtedly fantasized about getting away from it all — perhaps by surfing on Kauai, or biking along Colorado’s mountain trails, or getting in touch with nature at a national wildlife refuge in Florida. Whatever escape you may dream about, you’re likely to find at least a touch of it in your own backyard ... much of it available for free or at a fraction of what you might have expected to pay. An incredible array of warmweather family-oriented activities awaits you in the countless parks and stretches of beautiful beaches right here in Queens, which boasts more parkland than any other borough. The area that F. Scott Fitzgerald described as “a valley of ashes” in his novel “The Great Gatsby” has evolved into Flushing Meadows Corona Park, a 1,200-acre site that has famously hosted two World’s Fairs, several World Series, and, for five years, even the United Nations General Assembly. Today, it remains home to the US Open ten nis tou r nament, New York Mets, Queens Theatre, Queens Zoo, Queens Botanical

Volleyball is just one sport you might play at Flushing Meadows Corona Park.

PHOTO BY STEVE FISHER

it features facilities for bicycling, cricket, soccer, football, handball, tennis, basketball, running and fishing. If you prefer to spend your leisure time engaged in less athletic endeavors, you might revel in the park’s many peaceful, shady alcoves that are available for picnicking. It also offers an urban natural habitat for the study of plant and animal life. Summertime attractions include the Southern Queens Gospel Fest and puppet shows. Entrances are on North Conduit Avenue, Baisley Boulevard South and Lake View Boulevard East. About half the size of Baisley Pond Park is Juniper Valley Park, a 55-acre oasis with tree-lined paths, baseball and soccer fields, tennis courts, a running track and roller-hockey rink. Juniper Valley is also famous for hosting a bocce tournament every fall. The bocce courts are currently closed for reconstruction, with renovations expected to be completed in time for the summer crowds. Access the park f rom 80th Street, Juniper Boulevard North and South, and Lutheran Avenue. A lso recently upg r aded is Highland Park, surrounded by the Jackie Robinson Parkway, Vermont Avenue and Highland Boulevard between Bulwer Place and Cypress Hills Street. Besides offering stunning views of the Ridgewood Reservoir, the Rockaways and the Atlantic Ocean, the park features children’s farm gardens that serve as hands-on classrooms, as well as barbecue areas and tennis, handball and basketball courts. Fitness enthusiasts can revel in four paths around Queens specifically set aside by the Parks Department for running. They are located

in Juniper Valley Park in Middle Village, Kissena Park in Flushing, Phil Rizzuto Park in Richmond Hill and St. Albans Memorial Park. Dozens of fitness stations are spread among the borough’s recreation areas, with Forest Park, Flushing Meadows Corona Park, Kissena Park and Cunningham Park each offering multiple stations. If a day at the shore, where sand and surf convene, is more your style, consider the Rockaway Beach and Boardwalk, a yearround refuge for residents and visitors all along the Rockaway Peninsula. In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, an estimated $140 million was invested to restore the area to its former glory. Located on the Atlantic Ocean from Beach 9th Street in Far Rockaway to Beach 149th Street in Neponsit, Rockaway boasts beautiful sand and water and a variety of concessions. It is also home to the city’s only legal surfing beach, located from 67th to 69th streets and from 87th to 92nd streets. Playgrounds and an array of outdoor activities are to be found all around. No wond e r t he ba nd T he Ramones was inspired to pay musical tribute to their hometown mecca: “It’s not hard, not far to reach ... Rock, Rock Rockaway Beach.” In all, the city’s Department of Parks and Recreation maintains 14 miles of beaches, open f rom Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day. During the season, lifeguards are on duty daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. For further information on these and several other warm-weather attractions around the borough, v isit t he Pa rk s De pa r t ment’s official website, nycgovparks.org. Q

Forest Park comes in third in overall size and offers the borough’s only horseback riding trail, a four-mile equestrian path that winds through the park’s vast wooded area of 543 acres. The park is perhaps most famous for its century-old carousel, one of only five within the Parks Department. In the summer, it also hosts free concerts at the George Seuffert Bandshell. A golf course is another popular attraction. You can get into the park from Myrtle Avenue, Union Turnpike, Woodhaven Boulevard and Park Lane South in Woodhaven. Among the borough’s other family-friendly outdoor spaces is Astoria Park, located under the Hell Gate Bridge and home to the city’s oldest and largest outdoor swimming pool. In addition to aquatic pleasures, the park boasts an outdoor garden, bocce courts, tennis courts, basketball courts, a bandstand, a running track and a dog run. Thanks to magnificent views, the park’s benches that dot its perimeter are popular spots yearround. Entrances are on Astoria Park South, 21st Street, Hoyt Avenue and Ditmars Boulevard. Cunningham Park offers a labyrinth of trails, a delight for the many mountain bikers who frequent the 358-acre site. Besides being home to the borough’s first dedicated off-road cycling space, the park has baseball, soccer and cricket fields, basketball courts and hiking trails. The park may be accessed from Francis Lewis Boulevard, Union Turnpike and the Horace Harding Expressway. At 109 acres, Baisley Pond Park is one of the less expansive of the borough’s larger green spaces, but

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Queens’ eateries provide delicious weekend options

LET’S DO BRUNCH! by Tess McRae

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runch has grown from being a meal for the rich and famous to a more accessible and creative way to enjoy the sweetness of breakfast and the savoriness of lunch. While it has become popular with young adults, particularly in Brooklyn, Queens has become home to a significant number of eateries that specialize in the weekend afternoon meal. There are staples to the meal: mimosas, Bloody Marys, eggs Benedict and Nutella-filled, well, anything. Each space does it their own way but there is always a sense of familiarity within each menu. At least the good ones. Astoria is blanketed with small shops and restaurants, so naturally brunch spots were bound to pop up. One such place is Sanford’s Restaurant, located at 30-13 Broadway. It is described on Yelp by residents as “one of the best brunch spots in Astoria,” and a “highly recommended spot for brunch.” They call it “Absolut Brunch,” named for the vodka company. Unlike most brunch menus, this one is served Monday to Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The prix fixe allows diners an alcoholic mixed drink with one free refill and coffee. There are 20 or so dishes one can choose from as well, all for $16. “I ordered the steak skillet with extra cheese because I’m a sucker for cheese and it was so amazing,” Yelp user Katrina B. of Manhattan said. “I washed it all down with their Blood Mary drinks and it was the perfect combo.” Fan favorites include peanut butter banana pancakes, Nutella s’mores, waffles, and pancakes as well as the crab cakes Benedict. Nearby at Vesta Trattoria and Wine Bar, located at 21-02 30th Ave. in Astoria, there is a less vast yet surprisingly creative brunch menu. Vesta serves brunch within the traditional time frame — Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. If you’re still feeling the affects from a wild Friday night, Vesta has a Hangover Pizza made with potatoes, pancetta,

sausage, fried eggs and spicy tomato sauce. “I really enjoyed brunch here,” Amit V. of Long Island City said on Yelp. “Went with my fiance and her parents. We ordered different items so we got to try most of the menu, really surprised how much I like their brunch pizza. I definitely would come back for brunch ...” If pizza isn’t exactly what you’re looking for in the morning, Vesta also offers “A Warm Bankie” with fried eggs, creamy polenta, asparagus, mushrooms and truffle oil. If you’re looking for something a bit different from the norm, Sugarfreak, located at 36-18 30 Ave. in Astoria, offers a quirky spin on Louisiana home-style cooking on its brunch menu. The selection is large — bigger than many dinner menus — and tasty. From bananas Foster, French toast, served with bacon or sausage, to the Po-Boy — a Louisiana French bread with Jimmy Dean sausage patties, fried eggs, American cheese, lettuce, tomatoes and Tabasco mayo, Sugarfreak offers a fun experience with great food that won’t cost an arm and a leg either. Main dishes don’t go over $14 and the cooky cocktails, such as the sugar honey ice tea — made with Firefly iced tea vodka, mixed with lemony, honey goodness — Sugarfreak is for anyone looking for a unique spin on brunch. “Brunch, this place ... five stars,” Katie E. of Manhattan wrote on Yelp. “There’s so much on the menu, I want to go back and try. The oysters are so cheap! We were staring at other people’s food as it came out — it all looked so good.” The newly opened Crescent Grill, located at 38-40 Crescent St. in Dutch Kills, offers foodies a place to eat good food while taking in fine art. The restaurant is part eatery, part gallery and offers a $25 brunch option on Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., which comes with an entree and sweet and savory selections for the table. Crescent even offers a Bloody Mary with a piece of bacon in the glass. “The food was absolutely delicious,” Giusy C. of Manhattan wrote on Yelp. “They brought us this little basket of pastries as a starter, so fresh and delectable!”

Sandford’s Restaurant has been called the best place for brunch in Queens by many Yelp users. COURTESY PHOTO The eatery offers a prix fix for only $16.

Aged in Forest Hills provides foodies with a rustic setting and COURTESY PHOTO traditional brunch cuisine with a twist. If Western Queens is too far for you, there are still plenty of places to brunch with your friends, family and loved ones. Aged is an upscale steak and seafood restaurant located at 107-02 70 Road in Forest Hills that offers brunch for $15.65 with unlimited champagne. The menu is traditional: organic egg omelets that you can create yourself, Angus beef burgers and vanilla pancakes, but traditional doesn’t necessarily mean boring. Each item has a unique twist. For example, the sausage sandwich at Aged is made from lamb with sauteed onions, peppers and olives on a baguette. “For under $20 you can’t go wrong with unlimited champagne with brunch,” Venice A. of Corona said. “This is my go to brunch spot.” While some may not consider a diner to be a “brunch spot,” these eateries often offer dishes similar to some of the most popular restaurants at a much lower cost. One of Queens’ most famous diners, Georgia Diner, offers brunch food and drink all day every day. So if you want to sleep in and not have to worry about making the 3 p.m. deadline most brunch restaurants set in place, a diner is a fantastic option. Located at 86-55 Queens Blvd. in Elmhurst, Georgia Diner is accessible by three train lines: the E, M and R. The menu is about the size of a lengthy children’s book, something many patrons are thankful for. “This place is great,” Diana P. of Forest Hills wrote. “It’s super casual as it is a diner but offers an extensive menu to fulfill your cravings from breakfast/brunch to Q dinner/dessert.”

Crescent Grill is part gallery and part restaurant and serves brunch every weekend for $25. PHOTO BY TESS MCRAE

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‘ENRICH YOUR LIFE’ AT THE QUEENS LIBRARY S by Peter C. Mastrosimone

ure, spring brings to mind plans for the outdoors, as it should, but those April showers can sometimes put them on hold. When they do, the perfect place to spend your time in Queens is at the library. And the borough’s 62 locations offer so much, from the expected books to entertainment, job-seeking and home-buying assistance, children’s clubs and more, you just may want to go there even when it is sunny out. It’s with good reason the Queens Library’s slogan is “Enrich your life.” April is National Poetry Month, and the library has a slew of special events planned to celebrate it. Just a few are listed below (the library provides so many programs its monthly newsletter looks almost like a magazine; April’s is 40 pages. Full listings are always posted at queenslibrary.org). The Langston Hughes Library in Corona is hosting a poetry-writing workshop series for adults with George Edward Tait, dedicated to the legacies of poets Amiri Baraka and John Watusi Branch. It is being held every Tuesday this month at 5:30 p.m. A poetry workshop for children ages 6 to 12 called “Poetry is Lively!” will be held at the Flushing Library April 14 and 16 at 2:30 p.m. The kids will learn about the music of poetry

from Mother Goose to Shakespeare, and then get to write their own verses. Another poetry workshop for teens is going on at the LeFrak City Library, but it’s set to end April 11. Both children and teens are welcome to the “Poetry Residency with Community Word Project” event at the Far Rockaway Library, however. It began April 2 and will continue at 3:30 p.m. April 23 and 30. Other poetry-related events, many focused on the works of particular ethnic groups, are being held at library branches across Queens. And more are coming, including some looking at the most modern types of verse. “Hip-hop and rap are great examples of how poetry continues to evolve into new art forms,” said Kelvin Watson, the library’s vice president for digital service and strategy. “Queens Library is looking forward to launching its Hip-Hop Elements initiative with ‘31 Days of Non-Stop Hip-Hop’ in May. It will celebrate Queens’ cultural heritage and explore how rhyme and rhythm express emotion.” Cool. Given Queens’ well-earned reputation as home to many immigrants, it’s no surprise the library offers many programs in languages other than English. Those include Beginners’ Sewing for Women in Bengali at the Central Library at 10 a.m. April 16 and 17; Job Interview Strategies in Chinese at the Flushing

Library at 3 p.m. April 30; and an Afghan Calligraphy Workshop in Persian (and English) at the Pomonok Library in Flushing at 6 p.m. April 30. And again, that’s just a sampling of what’s on the agenda. “Queens Library is the international leader in providing library services to new Americans by providing them with popular reading materials and programs in their preferred languages,” said Fred Gintner, the assistant director for the New Americans Program & International Relations. Noting that immigrants are also introduced to other library services, including ones that help children succeed in English-speaking schools, Gintner added, “Multilingual skills are so valuable in today’s economy. There is no better place to encourage it than at Queens Library.” But what if you actually can’t get to any of the library branches for any event because you’re elderly or for some other reason are unable leave home? That’s where Mail-aBook comes in. It doesn’t just provide library materials for all ages sent to your door, though it certainly does that. Mail-a-Book also offers a teleconferenced program open to older people and the homebound. Just two of the events you can join in from home this month are “You Be the Judge,” in which real court cases will be discussed at 11

The Central Library is in the heart of Jamaica, and there are 61 other locations throughout FILE PHOTO Queens. a.m. April 16, and “Share Your Memories,” a writing workshop set for 11 a.m. April 30. Anyone who wants to participate in Mail-aBook teleconferences must call (718) 4640084 to register. An orientation for new members will be held at 11 a.m. April 14; call (718) 464-0074 for information on that. “Older adults want, need and deserve lifelong learning opportunities and enrichment,” said Madlyn Schneider of the library’s Older Adult Services. “Queens Library has a full schedule to engage, inform and entertain, whether they are able to visit the library in person or want to participate virtually from their homes.” “Enrich your life”: It’s what the library Q helps Queens residents do every day.

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Youth sports leagues all around Queens begin to play

PUT ME IN, COACH by Christopher Barca

A

s the weather finally warms up and the borough’s athletic fields thaw out, the dozens of youth s p o r t s le a g u e s t h r o u g h o u t Queens will begin play in the coming days and weeks. Every athletically inclined child loves the feeling of dusting off the lacrosse stick or oiling up the baseball glove for the first time come springtime, and there certainly is no shortage of affordable programs parents can sign their kids up for, regardless of the sport. With the Brazil-hosted 2014 FIFA World Cup fast approaching, it will be pretty evident which sport is the world’s favorite this summer. Sports bars packed with rowdy fans aside, children around Queens will be kicking the soccer ball around while wearing their favorite footballer’s jersey all spring and summer, and the Auburndale Soccer Club will honor soccer’s most extravagant spectacle as well. “This year, the intramural team names are World Cup teams,” office manager Christine Coniglio said. “We have Brazil, Russia, Italy and England and many others. It’s great.” Founded in 1977, the Auburndale Soccer Club has been teaching children the fundamentals of the world’s most popular game and educating them about the importance of teamwork for decades. The club hosts a myriad of opportunities for boys and girls of all ages to play, beginning with a First Kicks program for children ages 3 to 5.

He shoots, he scores! A boy learns the fundamentals of lacrosse at a Bombers clinic PHOTO COURTESY BOMBERS LACROSSE in 2013.

Registration costs $235 and kids will enjoy one-hour instructional sessions every Sunday until June 15 in Cunningham Park near the 73rd Ave and 210th Street intersection in Oakland Gardens. “Teachers teach them how to work within a group and the fundamental basics of kicking the ball,” Coniglio said. “It’s all about the kids and teaching them to stay healthy and be active.” For children between 6 and 16 years old, intramural play is a smashing success. Running until Father’s Day, the players are placed onto teams named after World Cup nations and practice once a week after 4:30 p.m. before playing a game every Sunday afternoon. The coaches are volunteers with backgrounds in soccer, according to Coniglio, who herself coaches a team, and registration costs $245. “Once the season starts and people see the kids on the field, parents come to the field and try to register their kids right then and there,” she said. Around 1,200 children take part in various Auburndale Soccer Club programs, including comprehensive travel and pretravel squads that children can try out for. Practices and games for those programs take place at 422 Weaver Road in Bayside. The club also runs a lengthy program for children with mental and physical disabilities, free of charge, every Sunday until June 15. The sessions are one hour a nd a re f u nded by sponsors a nd the community. “One of my main beliefs is teaching kids to be part of a group,” Coniglio said. “And oh, the parents get so involved.” For children who prefer lacrosse, arguably the Northeast’s most popular sport, the relatively new Bombers Boys and Girls Youth Lacrosse Program is always looking for new children to join. Bombers team coordinator and program co-founder Demian DeViccaro said the inspiration to start a youth lacrosse camp came from his son. “I have a young son. I wanted him to grow up and have somewhere to play,” DeViccaro said. “So I thought, ‘why don’t we start a youth program?’” Boys and girls between 5 and 18 years old can join and no prerequisite skill level is needed. Registration prices range from $125 for kindergartners through second graders, $175 for children in grades three through eight and $225 for high school students. Because the eight-weekend program began on April 6, the cost for enrollment will decrease with every session missed.

Who knows? Maybe some future members of the United States men’s and women’s national teams will be kicking the soccer ball around as members of the Auburndale Soccer Club this PHOTO COURTESY AUBURNDALE SOCCER CLUB spring and summer. “It’s such a great sport. It combines soccer skills, basketball skills, hockey skills. You really have to come out and try it,” DeVicarro said. “We’ll get them to learn the sport, know the sport and hopefully get them to love the sport.” Dozens of for mer Bombers yout h lacrosse players are now enjoying successful college playing careers, something DeVicarro hopes will continue as the program continues. “The way the sport is growing, there are more opportunities in college compared to any other sport,” he said. “Tons of colleges are bringing in [a lacrosse] program now.” For kids interested in playing either baseball or basketball this spring, South Ozone Park-based LP Fam is an organization dozens of ball players enjoy. According to program Executive Director David Reid, about 70 children have signed up so far for the weekly basketball clinic that takes place at the Queens Transition Center at 142-10 Linden Blvd. in Jamaica. The clinic, for boys and girls between the ages of 8 and 16, takes place on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and costs $40 for the season, which runs until mid-June.

A coach tutors a youngster on how to shoot the ball at a Bombers youth lacrosse clinic PHOTO COURTESY BOMBERS LACROSSE last year.

Parents can sign their child up in person by coming to the clinic. Reid says there is no late fee or penalty for children who register later in the spring. “There’s no deadline because we don’t want to refuse kids just for being late,” Reid said. “It’s about them, not about deadlines.” At the conclusion of the weekly clinic, LP Fam hosts a summer basketball league, where kids who took part in the clinic are divided into teams and par ticipate in tournaments. Reid says the clinic, which has about 70 kids enrolled, and league are good for children who are familiar with the game and those who are looking to learn the game. For more experienced teenage players, the program is holding tr youts for its American Athletic Union team, which travels up and down the East Coast playing teams from different cities throughout the summer. LP Fam also caters to fans of America’s pastime, as the organization is looking for young baseball players to join their ranks. About 60 children are already enrolled to play in the program’s baseball league, which features a handful of teams, and registration costs $100. The league takes place at Lincoln Park in South Ozone Park and play will begin on the weekend of May 17. Parents can sign their children up in person by coming to the weekly basketball clinic. Reid says LP Fam is also interested in creating a soccer tournament, but the organization does not have an adequate number of coaches. Anyone interested in volunteering or coaching is asked to contact managers Paul Cox or Derick Braswell at (917) 607-2421 or (917) 692-4775, respectively. These are just some of the many leagues available to youngsters, and comprehensive lists of programs to join can be found at jamaica311.com/youth-sports-organizations / and queensmamas.com /queens_ mamas/2012/04/spring-and-summer- sportsQ leagues-for-queens-kids.html.

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From festivals to concerts, Queens offers fantastic entertainment

A BOOMING ART SEASON IN STORE by Tess McRae

W

hile tulips and daffodils poke out of the thawing soil and the borough undergoes its natural transformation into spring, the arts venues of Queens are going through their own metamorphosis. Already, museums, music venues and theater spaces have begun rolling out their new exhibits and lineups. The Queens Museum, located in Flushing Meadows Corona Park, will open “13 Most Wanted Men: Andy Warhol and the 1964 World’s Fair,” on April 26 in honor of the historical event’s 50th anniversary. Warhol, a pop provocateur, sparked a scandal at the World’s Fair. As part of a prominent set of public commissions for the New York State Pavilion — designed by Philip Johnson — Warhol enlarged mug shots from an NYPD booklet featuring the 13 most wanted criminals of 1962. The piece was installed in April 15, 1964 but was painted over by Fair officials with silver paint a few days after. When the World’s Fair opened to the public, all that was visible was a large shiny square. The artist later produced another set of “Most Wanted Men” paintings with the screens he used to make the mural, nine of which

are assembled in Queens for the first time since their creation. “13 Most Wanted Men: Andy Warhol and the 1964 World’s Fair” takes Warhol’s original piece as its subject and addresses the creation and destruction of the work while placing it in its artistic and social context; combining art, documentation and archival material. The exhibit is one of dozens of special events going on in April in honor of the fair. T h e q u i r k y ye t b e aut i f u l Socrates Sculpture Park, located at 32-01 Vernon Blvd. in Long Island City, is unveiling two new pieces this spring. Starting May 11, “SuralArk” and “Queen Mother of Reality” will be on view until August. “SuralArk” is the winner of “Folly 2014,” an annual competition among emerging architects to design and build a large-scale project for public exhibition. The piece was designed by the architectural firm Austin + Mergold and blends an overturned ship and a typical suburban house. “SuralArk” will provide shelter for “respite and contemplation” for all who enter the park this spring and summer. The large-scale installation will span more than 50 feet with an elevation of 16 feet. It is meant to represent the increasingly blurred lines between city, suburban envi-

The notorious Andy Warhol was involved in a scandal when he plastered photos of the NYPD’s most wanted men during the 1964 World’s Fair. In honor of the fair’s anniversary, the Queens Museum will once again display COURTESY PHOTO the controversial piece.

ronments and rural living. “Queen Mother of Reality” opens the same day as “SuralArk.” The 50-foot long by 18-foot high sculpture of a reclining woman resting on her arm was made from reclaimed mater ials and was designed by renowned Polish artist Pawel Althamer. The piece is meant — as much artwork is — to be a platform for creative dialogue but will also provide a space for interactive programming, ref lecting the park’s commitment to engaging audiences through public art. “Queen Mother of Reality” is dedicated to Queen Mother Dr. Delois Blakely, who has been the community mayor of Harlem since she was swor n i n by Mayor Rudolph Giuliani in 1995. The Jeff rey Leder Galler y, located at 21-37 45 Road, will present what may be the most anticipated exhibit in Queens: “Whitewashed.” The showcase will feature artists from the recently painted-over 5Pointz building, where street artists were once free to paint and decorate the structure as they

Flushing Town Hall hosts arts programs all year long but special guests “Black Violin,” a duo who perform hip-hop-inspired music with a classical twist, have been one of the venue’s more anticipated concerts. COURTESY PHOTO pleased. The building will be razed and replaced with luxury housing and commercial space. Flushing Town Hall, located at 137-35 Northern Blvd., presents on April 12, “Black Violin,” also known as American hip-hop duo Kev Marcus and Wil B. The pair are classically trained string instrumentalists who meld highbrow and pop culture into a single genre-bustling act. Marcus, who plays violin, and B, who plays viola, will perform songs from their second CD, “Classical Trained,” which features verses and symphonic hooks underscored by an array of rhythmic grooves.

The Jeffrey Leder Gallery will become home to 5Pointz for the “Whitewashed” exhibit, where street artists will display their work for the first time in LIC PHOTO BY TESS MCRAE since losing the building in the fall.

Flushing Town Hall will also display works of Queens College u nderg radu ate sen iors i n its “Queens College St udio A r ts Senior Projects” showcase. Broadway legend Barbara Cook will perform in the Colden Auditorium at Queens College, located at 65-30 Kissena Blvd., as part of the Kupferberg Center for the Arts Presents series. The two-time Grammy Award winner and Tony Award winner will grace the stage and perform a number of hits meant to touch the audience’s heart and raise their spirits. Richard Mazda, founder and executive director of the Queens Secret Theatre, will run the fourth annual Long Island City Arts Open where art lovers can experience visual and performance art over the course of four days. The LIC Arts Open bridges the gap between artists, creatives, residents, local government, tourists, art enthusiasts and the art-buying sector. The events and activities provide exposure for and outreach to the vibrant population of the Long Island City arts community. A series of exhibits, shows and concerts will be ongoing throughout the four-day festival in various spaces in the neighborhood. “Because our exhibition space and performance spaces are located in both highly trafficked commercial districts and traditional galler ies to cult u rally u nderserved areas, in alternative spaces, each venue brings with it a unique taste of ‘community,’” the event’s website reads. The LIC Arts Open will run from May 14 to 18. Visit licarts open.org for more information. Q

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Sailing in the city’s waterways is a way to get over cabin fever

HIT THE WATER AS WEATHER WARMS by Domenick Rafter

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e’re surrounded by water: bays, rivers and canals that are often just as clogged w it h t r af f ic as some of ou r roadways. The views of the city from its waterways are unique, but not hard to get. The city is bustling with tourist boat and dinner cruises that allow the sailor in us all to enjoy the city’s skyline, bridges and harbor sights, like the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. Most prominent among them is the Circle Line. The big green and white boats that circumvent Manhattan have been a staple of the city since 1945. The cruises, which run almost three hours completely around Manhattan and about 90 minutes for those who only go halfway around, attract tourists looking for a different view of the city and residents who just want to relax and get off the busy streets and trains for a while. Departing from Pier 83, the Circle Line heads south along the Hudson River into New York Harbor,

where it does a figure eight at the Statue of Liberty — so both the port and starboard sides of the boat get a clear view of Lady Liberty — before heading up the East River under the city’s iconic bridges. From the water, there is a strange sense of calm as the boat sails under the Manhattan and Williamsburg bridges where the clanging sound of subway trains and car horns seems very distant, though it’s all happening just several dozen feet from your head. At Midtown, the semicircle cruises turn back and retrace their wake back to Pier 83, but the full island cruise offers something few experience — a trip up the lesserknown Harlem River past Harlem and the Bronx, under the low Harlem River bridges (As you pass under them, look up; you can actually see the underbellies of cars as they pass over the bridges). From here, riders get a view of Yankee Stadium and the rural Inwood Hill Park. After passing the Spuy ten D uy v il rail road bridge, the only bridge that needs to open for the boats to pass through, the Circle Line heads out

World Yacht has been running dinner cruises in New York Harbor for 30 years. PHOTO COURTESY WORLD YACHT

into the Hudson River, past New Jersey’s picturesque Palisades and under the George Washington Bridge before heading back to Pier 83. The entire cruise is narrated by one of the company’s tour guides, who often tell riders the story of New York City in a unique way that only New Yorkers can tell it, with some of the great stories in city history — including the traditional tale of Peter Minuit’s swindling of the Native Americans when he bought Manhattan for $24. (The guide might tell you that would be much higher in today’s money thanks to inflation). Food and drink can be purchased on board, and seats can be found inside, outside, or under a canopy with open-air windows. Besides the full island and semicircle cruises, the company also offers cruises just to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, sunset cruises, special event cruises and sailing dedicated specifically to children. As the weather gets warmer, take a ride on the Beast — Circle Line’s 70-foot speedboat that races down the Hudson River at 45 mph, in a thrilling adventure to the Statue of Liberty. The Beast starts operating May 3, but does not run when it rains. Fore more information and a schedule of sailings, visit circleline42.com. For those who would rather enjoy a dinner or host a party on the open water, there’s a cruise for that. World Yacht has also been a staple of New York’s waterways for decades. The ships operate out of Pier 81, next to the Circle Line pier. The company offers din ner cruises, at sunset and after nightfall, as well as brunch cruises and charters for weddings, birthday parties and corporate events. The ships will also be sailing for

A Circle Line boat past the United Nations in Midtown as it heads north along the East River. The 69-year-old sightseeing cruise is perhaps the most PHOTO BY DOMENICK RAFTER popular boat ride in New York City. special Easter and Mother’s Day cruises. World Yacht’s ships, which can carry parties of 50 to 250 people, offer indoor dining, but also outdoor seating for those who want to enjoy a drink in the sun or under the stars on a warm evening. For more information on pricing and sailing times, visit worldyacht. com. For a different dining experience, check out the Bateux. Cruising year round from Chelsea Piers, the Bateux offers 180 -degree viewing from its dining space with its glass ceiling and walls. The boat also includes two outdoor decks with views of Manhattan and the Statue of Liberty. Groove under the city lights well into the night on the boat’s hardwood dance f loor, which is surprisingly stable despite being in the water.

For more information on the Bateux and pictures of the boat, visit bateuxnewyork.com. Though Seastreak is known for operating some of the city’s ferry routes, most notably the Rockaway ferry, the company also offers up its ships for charters. Though most of the line’s dinner cruises stay in New York Harbor, Seastreak’s larger ships can be chartered for cruises to Nantucket, Martha’s Vineyard or Connecticut. For more information on how to charter a Seastreak boat, visit seastreak.com. This winter was long and cold a nd kept most New Yorkers indoors and away from the water. With the weather warming up, go out and enjoy the richness that surrounds us and the vistas that are offered from our rivers and bays. It won’t be that long before they will be clogged with ice — again. Q

From your dinner table on the Bateux, you get a panoramic view of the PHOTO COURTESY BATEUX Manhattan skyline and landmarks of New York.

C M SG page 17 Y K Page 17 QUEENS CHRONICLE, Thursday, April 10, 2014

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t’s been 50 years this month since the 1964-65 World’s Fair opened at Flushing Meadows, yet people still refer to the site as the fairgrounds, and for good reason. With the grandiose Unisphere and the hulking New York State Pavilion remaining as testaments to the fair, it’s hard not to imagine what it looked like when the area was covered with 150 pavilions, swarming with millions of visitors. Robert Moses, president and creator of the fair, said that the Unisphere would remind future generations that “a pageant of surpassing interest and significance” once took place there. He was right, and to honor the memory of that massive undertaking, the city and other institutions are holding special events through October [when the fair closed for the season]. It is also the 75th anniversary of the 1939-40 World’s Fair at the fairgrounds. Listed below is the most comprehensive schedule of programs available at this time. Additional events will be posted as they become available at Itsinqueens.com / worldsfair. Exhibit: “The 1939 and 1964 New York World’s Fair,” Greater Astoria Historical Society, Quinn Building, 35-20 Broadway, 4th Floor, Long Island City, now through June 30, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily. Suggested donation: $5; free for GAHS members. Queens Center Mall, Elmhurst, will dedicate space in April for an exhibit on how the 1939 and 1964 World’s Fairs played up the borough’s diversity. Saturday, April 12, a NY World’s Fair tour, led by Greater Astoria Historical Society and Forgotten New York. Meet at the boardwalk leading to Flushing Meadows Park, south of 7 Train Willets Point St at ion, noon to 3 pm. $ 20 ; $15 for GAHS members. Sunday, April 13, at 3 p.m., “Visions of Tomorrow: Art and Commerce at the 1939 New York World’s Fair,” Noguchi Museum, 9-01 33rd Road, LIC. Lecture by Helen Harrison, director of the Pollack-Krasner House and Study Center. Free with NG admission. “64 in 64,” organized by the Queens Historical Society, at Queens Theatre, Flushing Meadows Park. Sixty-four photographs documenting the construction of the New York State Pavilion which consisted of Theaterama

The Unisphere was the central hub of the 1964-65 World’s Fair at Flushing Meadows. Behind it to the left are the U.S. Pavilion and Shea Stadium. PHOTO COURTESY RON MARZLOCK To the right rear is the Singer Bowl, now the USTA’s Louis Armstrong Stadium. (today’s Queens Theatre), the Tent of Tomorrow and three Observation Towers. Runs through Nov. 2, open on Mondays from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m and Tuesdays through Sundays, 10 a.m. to 6 pm. Free. “Iconic Symbols of the 1964 World’s Fair Reimagined — in LEGOs”, Queens Theatre, Fun exhibit of seven World’s Fair structures made out of LEGOs. Runs through Nov. 2. “Bringing the World to the Fair: The Port Authority’s Role — Trade, Travel and Tourism in Queens, the Region and the World,” Queens Theatre. Exhibit includes a pop-up, display case and video. Runs through July 31. Open on Mondays, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and Tuesdays through Sundays, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Free. April 22 (50th anniversary of the opening of the 1964 fair). “When the World Came to Queens,” a presentation at Queens Theatre featuring rare photographs and anecdotes on both fairs conducted by author and historian Bill Cotter, 3 p.m. and 7 p.m., Free (suggested donation $10).

April 22, Open gate event, Flushing Meadows Park. NYC Parks, Borough President Melinda Katz and the New York State Pavilion Paint Project Crew will open the gate to the NYS Pavilion so guests can view and take photos of the interior (Tent of Tomorrow only). The Paint Crew will answer questions and talk about the structure’s past, present and future, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., free. Apri l 27, “A ndy Warhol’s 13 Most Wanted Men and the 1964 World’s Fair” exhibit, Queens Museum, Flushing Meadows Park Warhol’s exhibit sparked a scandal at the fair. He enlarged mug shots from an NYPD booklet featuring the 13 most wanted criminals of 1962. The work was installed and shortly after painted over. Later, Warhol produced 20 Most Wanted Men paintings with the screens he had used to make the mural. These works will form the core of this year’s exhibition, open Wednesday through Sunday, noon to 6 p.m., runs through Sept. 7, free with QM admission.

April 29, Queens Taste 2014, Sheraton LaGuardia Hotel, 135-20 39 Ave., Flushing. This annual event to support the Queens Economic Development Corp. will feature a World’s Fair memorabilia table and photos, 6 to 9 p.m., $100. A fair expert and the women who sold Belgian waffles in 1964 will attend. April 30, “The World Comes to Queens: Films from the 1939 and 1964 World Fairs,” Museum of the Moving Image, 36-01 35 Ave., Astoria. The museum will continuously show fair-related films, in excerpts or their entirety. Runs through Aug. 31. May 5, “Moving the World to the 1964 World’s Fair,” photo exhibit will be on display at the AirTrain JFK Jamaica and Howard Beach Stations until Nov. 12. May 6, “Harvesting our History: The Birth of Queens Botanical Garden,” 43-50 Main Street, Flushing. Exhibition created largely from the venue’s archives looks back at the 1939 and 1964 fairs and traces QBG’s development. Free with QBG admission. continued on page 25

C M SG page 19 Y K Page 19 QUEENS CHRONICLE, Thursday, April 10, 2014

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Lend a helping hand

TIPS ON HELPING INJURED WILDLIFE A by Harry Kane

ll too often, a passerby st u mbles upon an i nju red a n i m al a nd wonders what to do. It’s happened to most of us. Do we pick up this wounded bird and bring it to our home? Or, can we call someone who knows what to do? These types of questions are common, but in that moment, when we see the fallen bird, we need to rethink our actions before making a hasty decision. A myriad of wild animals exist within the confines of the urban landscape, from raccoons and skunks to pigeons and squirrels. Wild animals such as these can sometimes pose dilem mas to urban city dwellers. Feral cats threaten wildlife, such as birds and squirrels, and are considered a menace by some. These cats, descendants of domesticated felines, are often born in the wild and turn to the streets for survival. They hunt and kill an exorbitant number of wildlife species. And they prey on smaller wildlife — mainly birds, “You do have cats that are programmed killers,” said Mike Phillips, a community outreach coordinator with the New York City Feral Cat Initiative, a program of the Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals. But, he says, the killer cat syndrome that some of the feral cats have is rare and often the exception.

Besides wild cats, the general public coexists with wildlife, but someti mes forgets the effect humans have on other species. Man’s habitat is also theirs, and with cold winters, such as the one we are coming out of, these wild animals have struggled, in the elements, just to survive. When wild animals come into contact with humans, it’s often about survival. People tend to want to feed these animals with bread crumbs or leftovers, and while they may feel gratification from the gestures, they need to strike a balance between nurturing wild animals and leaving them to survive in nature on their own, without human assistance. Every so often, well-meaning citizens attempt to rescue injured, sick or orphaned animals that look like they need assistance. While technically, it is illegal to keep wildlife without a per mit or license by the state as a rehabilitator, rescuing wildlife is a common occurrence. But people should heed the advice of specialists whose job it is to rescue and rehabilit ate sick or i nju red w ild animals. In Queens, many go to parks or open spaces to relax. While walking along the path, one might see what appears to be an injured squirrel. In this scenario, a decision must be made on what to do. Leaving the animal alone, to fend for itself

Young squirrels often fall from nests and get injured when the wind picks up.

and survive, is the usual correct decision, according to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. But, if you want to do more, you can contact a wildlife rehabilitator in your area. Cathy Horvath has been a federally and state-licensed rehabilitator for 30 years and her nonprofit group, WINNOR, or Wildlife in Need of Rescue and Rehabilitation, is based out of her home in Massapequa, LI. “There are different protocols for different animals,” Horvath said. Typically, the general public can call park rangers or 311. With some dangerous animals, like a bird of prey, it is inadvisable to pick it up. But, Horvath added, it’s alright to scoop up a songbird or pigeon. Every year, Horvath and her husband, Bobby Horvath, who works as a firefighter in Far Rockaway, rehabilitate a couple hundred animals. “I try to fix everything. Some things I can fix, some things I can’t,” she said. “A lot of times the animals don’t make it.” Horvath admits that feral cats are a constant problem for birds. When an animal has been bitten by a feral cat, they are given pain m e d ic a t io n a n d a nt i bio t ic s , “because when a cat bites an animal, they have a lot of bacteria in their mouth and it goes into the blood stream of the animal they have bitten,” she said. In Queens, Donna Bungo, who has been a licensed rehabilitator in the state since 2004, primarily handles small mammals. The most common injuries consist of broken bones and head trauma. Bungo explained that if the bird is older and hurt, it is probably having trouble regulating its body temperature; it can’t stay warm and is going into shock. If you decide to help the bird, she says, take it inside for warmth. Sometimes it needs to be dried off with a hand towel if wet. Then, Bungo says, take a soda bottle with a screw top, fill it with warm water, put it in a sock, and lay the animal next to the bottle in

Cathy Horvath, a state-licensed rehabilitator, with an injured snowy owl. She and her husband treat about 200 wild animals a year. PHOTOS COURTESY CATHY HORVATH

a small box. The smaller the box the better, otherwise the heat will escape. Make sure the screw cap is on tight, so it doesn’t leak on the animal. Afterwards, if the rescuer can ascertain whether the animal is stable, he or she can give it sugar water, she said. With squirrels, lay them down on their stomachs and put a drop of water by their lips. In the best-case scenario, they will start licking it. It is critical to rehydrate them within 24 hours, so time is of the essence. Over the years, Bungo has received numerous calls from Rego Park and Forest Hills. She says nests in the trees sometimes fall during storms. Squirrel nests are precariously situated on branches or the ledge of a tree and are easily blown over, she explained. But Edita Birnkrant, the New York director of Friends of Animals, says that it is illegal to treat injured wildlife unless you have a permit. Birnkrant explained that a passerby should be especially careful with baby birds. The parents could be nearby, and it might be temporarily stunned or in shock, so should be left alone. But if the bird

truly needs to be rescued, she said, it should be transported to a rehabilitator or animal hospital in a small box. Birnkrant says that one of the best resources in the area is The Wild Bird Fund Inc., based on the Upper West Side in Manhattan. It is an emergency care center for birds. “Generally, we advocate that people do not feed the animals,” she added. “Once wild animals are given food, they become dependent on people. Plus, much of the food isn’t good for the animal and causes digestive issues.” The wildlife g roup that Bir n k rant directs, which was founded in 1957, deals with issues associated with urban wildlife from across New York City. She is concerned about the Department of Environmental Conservation’s plan to obliterate the mute swan population, which consists of around 2,200 swans throughout the state of New York. But that proposal is now on hold. Birnkrant added that there aren’t enough park rangers in the city and that one problem area for wildlife is at Kissena Park in Flushing, where fishermen allegedly net turQ tles, which are protected.

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BETTER WEATHER MAY BE COMING by Domenick Rafter

T

he groundhog was right. When Staten Island Chuck leaped from Mayor de Blasio’s arms two months ago, he saw his shadow and called for a longer winter. It lasted six more weeks — and then some. This winter has been a snowy one. Though it hasn’t been much colder than average, it sure felt like it was never ending. Below freezing conditions lasted regularly through March 27, and although it is not uncommon to see bitter cold and snow in early April, because the winter has been cold and snowy since early December with little reprieve, it felt even worse than it was. That’s because a trough in the upper atmosphere kept arctic air locked over the Eastern United States much later than usual — through the end of March. That left people wondering whether or not spring would ever arrive. Well it has and it will, WILL, get

warmer. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s prediction calls for an equal chance of colder than normal and warmer than nor mal temperat u res this spring. The possibility for warmer weather is greater as we get into late May and Ju ne, especially along the coast. That means while Apr il cou ld st ill be cool, the warmer weather will be more likely than not to kick in as we get later in the spring and could be warmer than usual. The Great Lakes and Northern Pl a i n s , w h ich h ave s u f fe r e d through an even more brutal winter than we have, are more likely to see b elow ave r a g e t e m p e r a t u r e s throughout the spring. That’s mainly due to the frozen Great Lakes and the winter’s cold causing the ground to freeze unusually deep, which means it will take longer for both water and soil to thaw. The West Coast and Alaska, which have experienced a much warmer winter than usual and suffered from lack of rain, will continue

to be dry and warm for the foreseeable future. If you want warmer weather, you may be excited to know NOAA is predicting a hot summer along the coast and a warmer winter next yea r t h roug hout t he cou nt r y, including the Northeast, as El Niño kicks in. Meanwhile, the Farmers Almanac seems to be in agreement with NOAA on most accounts. Its longrange forecast for the Alantic Corridor, which runs from Virgina to Boston, says: “April and May will be drier and much warmer than normal.” As for its forecast for the rest of the year beyond the spring: “Summer will be hotter and rainier than normal, with the hottest periods in early June, early to mid-July, and early to mid-August. September and October will be warmer and drier than normal, with a hur r icane th reat in early to mid-September.” Let’s just forget we read the latter half of that last sentence, shall we? Q

Page 21 QUEENS CHRONICLE, Thursday, April 10, 2014

After a long, cold winter, forecast calls for average to warmer future

While the Northern Plains and Great Lakes are expected to still be chilly this spring, New York is forecasted to have an average season, with a greater possibility of warmer than normal weather later in the spring and MAP COURTESY NOAA into summer.

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Wil this be the year? Unlikely.

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A METS ANALYSIS by Lloyd Carroll

C

iti Field opened five years ago and the Mets have not had a winning season since. Throw in the last two years they played in Shea Stadium, 2007 and 2008, when they were in first place in September in the National League East only to wind up behind the Philadelphia Phillies, and Mets fans must feel as if they have endured a biblical seven years of famine. Well, fans of our Flushing heroes, get ready for year No. 8. To say the fan base is dispirited is an understatement. Two years ago it appeared that Mets ownership was going to turn the page on player salaries when it settled with Irving Picard, the trustee seeking compensation for the victims of the Madoff Securities scandal. Picard had determined the Mets owners, Fred Wilpon and his brother-in-law Saul Katz, had been unjustifiably enriched by Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi scheme even though they were not complicit. Much to their fans’ collective chagrin, Mets management has continued to sit on the checkbook when it comes to salaries. Coming into the 2014 season the Mets ranked a puny 22nd out of the 30 Major League Baseball teams in terms of payroll, at around $89 million. In comparison, the Yankees payroll is close to $204 million. Yes, high payroll doesn’t always translate to winning on the field, but the odds are your team is not going to compete for a postseason berth if it is in the bottom third in player compensation. Even the small-town Kansas City Royals, Cincinnati Reds and Milwaukee Brewers outspend the Mets, who play in the biggest media market but often conveniently ignore that when it comes to salaries. One reason Mets fans were excited at the end of the 2013 season was that the monstrous contracts of underperforming outfielder Jason Bay and often-injured pitcher Johan Santana were coming off the books. That

Citi Field on Opening Day, March 31. PHOTO BY CHRISTOPHER BARCA

factor, coupled with the end of the Madoff saga, had even the team’s notoriously parsimonious general manager, Sandy Alderson, chirping about the Mets’ newfound financial flexibility. Unfortunately, the Mets picked the wrong year to come into a windfall because of the extremely poor quality of available free agents. The best-known free agent Alderson did sign was outfielder Curtis Granderson, who spent the last four years with the Yankees. Granderson signed a four-year $60 million contract, and would certainly have commanded even more money from another team if not for unrelated injuries to his left hand and right forearm that caused him to miss most of 2013. Granderson can hit for power, has enough speed to get to most fly balls and has a good enough arm to keep opposing runners from taking an extra base on a hit. His biggest detriment is his propensity to strike out. If “The Grandy Man” (as Yankees radio announcer John Sterling liked to call him) is to succeed with the Mets, he is going to have to revert to the kind of player he was with the Detroit Tigers. Instead of trying to jack home runs in cavernous Citi Field, he is better off thinking of making contact and trying to get balls into the outfield gaps for doubles and triples. Granderson’s arrival will certainly help the most recognizable Met, third baseman David Wright. Not only will his presence in the lineup ensure that Wright gets better pitches to hit but he will also give him pre- and postgame relief in the clubhouse because Curtis enjoys giveand-take with the media and has long been regarded as one of baseball’s really good guys. While Alderson won plaudits for his successful pursuit of Granderson, his signing of outfielder Chris Young to a one-year $7.5 million contract raised eyebrows to say the least. For a team that has become renowned for its unwillingness to spend money, giving a guy who batted .200 with a dozen homers for the Oakland Athletics in 2013, a player that few Mets fans were clamoring for, seemed bizarre. Young did show more pop at the plate when he played for the Arizona Diamondbacks from 2007 through 2012, but he never hit for a batting average higher than a very pedestrian .257. When the 2013 season ended, the biggest questions for the Mets were, “Who will play first base and who will play shortstop?” Now that the 2014 season is underway the biggest questions facing manager Terry Collins are “Who will play first base and who will play shortstop?” Spring training was supposed to be a great battle for the first baseman’s job, with Lucas Duda and Ike Davis, who both endured poor seasons last year, battling it out for the position. Instead both appeared to be locked in a contest for who could miss the most March games with injuries. Davis is a better fielder than Duda and when he is going well has far more upside. Ruben Tejada did a wonderful job taking over the shortstop job in 2012, when perennial All-Star and 2011 National League batting

champ Jose Reyes was forced to leave Flushing for Miami (he would subsequently be traded to the Toronto Blue Jays) because the Mets were so cashstrapped that Alderson could not even make him a token offer to stay. Tejada’s performance badly tailed off last year and there were rumors that he wasn’t working as hard at his craft as he should have been. He spent the off-season working on strength and conditioning in the brutal cold of Michigan, which seemed to impress Collins, a Can Zach Wheeler become this year ’s Mat t Har vey? native Michigander. It would be nice PHOTO COUR TESY NY METS to report Tejada enjoyed a great spring training but alas, that was not the case. Catcher Travis d’Arnaud (along with pitcher of the Mets starting corps because in spite of Noah Syndergaard) was a key piece in the trade him being one of the best pitchers the team has that sent Cy Young Award-winning pitcher had over the last five years, he still never seems R.A. Dickey to the Blue Jays. D’Arnaud strug- to get the respect of many of the media or fans. gled at the plate during his September call-up It could be because he has an unassuming perand did not do much better in spring training. If sonality or the fact that he gets outs without the Mets are going to surprise their many crit- throwing overpowering fastballs. I admit I was dumbfounded when the Mets ics this year, it’s imperative that he both hit and signed corpulent 40-year-old righthander Barhandle their highly vaunted pitching staff. Every year Daniel Murphy, who has proven tolo Colon to a two-year, $20 million contract. to be a fine hitter over the years, is always Sure, Colon won 18 games for the Oakland rumored to be traded and yet every year he is Athletics last year, but there is no guarantee back with the Mets. To his immense credit, he that kind of lightning will strike with the Mets. My guess is that lefty pitcher and Long has worked hard on his defense and has turned Beach, LI native John Lannan, who pitched out to be a very good second baseman. Eric Young Jr. was acquired by the Mets last pretty well for the Washington Nationals for June, and it turned out to be a good acquisition years and was signed by Alderson to a minor as he led the National League in stolen bases league contract during the off-season, will give last year. Young can play both second base and the Mets their best bang for the salary buck. the outfield, though I have a feeling that both Lannan will start out in the Mets bullpen but I Collins and Alderson wish he could add short- expect him to be a spot starter before long. Bobby Parnell finally became the hardstop to his resume. Speaking again of pitching, it has long been throwing successful closer that Mets managethe Mets’ strong suit, even back in those terri- ment had long envisioned last year. But last ble pre-Tom Seaver days when Al Jackson and year he had surgery on his neck and then tore a ligament on Opening Day this year, putting Jack Fisher took the mound for the Amazin’s. Matt Harvey reminded fans a lot of the great him out for weeks, and much more than that if Seaver last year as he dominated hitters and he requires Tommy John surgery. The rest of the Mets bullpen is so nondewas the starting pitcher for the National League at the 2013 All-Star Game, held at Citi Field. script that Alderson brought in former Tigers As has unfortunately become more common- reliever Jose Valverde. Valverde was fortunate place in baseball, Harvey suffered a ligament in that he played for some powerhouse teams tear in his elbow and required Tommy John but he is notorious for poor control, especially surgery that will in all likelihood shelve him under high pressure. My guess is it won’t be for the entire season (see “Bobby Parnell”). long until he is cascaded with boos at Citi Field. Where will the Mets wind up in all likeliHarvey says he will rejoin the Mets sometime in 2014, but there is no way Alderson is going hood? Both the Atlanta Braves and the Washto rush him back and risk another injury that ington Nationals, who swept the Amazin’s to start the season, have far more talent and could be career-ending. Zack Wheeler, who was obtained from the should compete right until the end of SeptemSan Francisco Giants for Carlos Beltran, is ber for the NL East crown. The Mets are, howbeing counted on to be this year’s Matt Harvey. ever, in better shape than both the aging Phillies and the penny-pinching Miami Marlins. That’s a tall order. Alderson generated some off-season headJonathon Niese has proven to be a reliable hurler but he missed a good deal of spring lines and a lot of guffaws when he said the training with arm issues that required him to Mets can be a 90-win team. If I were Collins I fly up to New York twice for medical exams. would worry about 82 wins as my magic numEverything proved negative and Mets manage- ber since that would mean that the Mets would ment is crossing its fingers that Niese can be have won more games than they lost. If Collins can’t break even in the win-loss column then he the workhorse that he’s been in recent years. Q Dillon Gee could be the Rodney Dangerfield will probably be out at the end of the year.

C M SG page 23 Y K Page 23 QUEENS CHRONICLE, Thursday, April 10, 2014

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Fresh produce in the fresh air

MARKET FORCES by Alessandra Malito

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F

resh green vegetables and colorful fruits, a variety of spices and homemade goods — those are some of the best parts of a farmers market. The benefits for the body and community are pretty plentiful, too. Spring will eventually bud and when it does will come a number of barrels and baskets with seasonal treats. Not only do the products from farmers markets taste better, but they’re locally grown and healthier, promoters say. “There’s no better-tasting product than what’s sold at a farmers market,” Michael Hurwitz, director of the Greenmarkets program at GrowNYC, said. And Queens’ cultural mix stretches far into the depths of the varieties of the borough’s delicious fresh foods. “We’re celebrating the diversity Queens has to offer,” Hurwitz said. “We’re celebrating the many cultures that live next to one another in the neighborhood.” The nonprofit GrowNYC has seven farmers markets in Queens, located in Long Island City, Astoria, Sunnyside, Jackson Heights, Corona, Elmhurst and Forest Hills. Jackson Heights and Forest Hills are open year-round, while the others have varying schedules, with the earliest opening, May 10, at the one in Sunnyside. “The markets we operate in Queens — we’re transforming cement into vibrant centers of community activity, bringing neighbors together that may not interact on a daily basis,” Hurwitz said. GrowNYC Greenmarkets boast a substantial inventory, including 100 types of apples, sustainably raised meats from beef to goat, tea, fish, honey, maple products, jam, baked goods and cheese. One of the benefits of buying locally grown and raised food is the fact that it takes less time to be distributed after harvesting, meaning the products are fresher and longer lasting — that’s good for your wallet and your stomach. Nutrients diminish in food that takes longer to travel from farm to store to kitchen.

The farmers market in Jackson Heights, above and below, is one that draws a crowd and has plenty of booths. It’s also open PHOTOS BY CHRISTOPHE TEDJASUKMANA year-round. “It’s healthier, it’s better tasting, it ripens the way it’s supposed to ripen,” Hurwitz said. “Food that is shipped is harvested long before it’s nutritionally matured. It also means the most value for your money.” There are areas all around Queens that embrace the importance of having farmers markets. Another one, separate from GrowNYC, is held outside the Queens Botanical Garden on Dahlia Avenue in Flushing. It will be open from June 20 until the end of November. The QBG is open all year. Darcy Hector, the garden’s director of marketing and development, echoed Hurwitz’s statements on the benefit of getting produce at a farmers market. “The local-grown product is the most natural because it doesn’t have to travel,” Hector said. “Everything is always better when it’s fresh.” Besides the produce and other seasonal goods sold outside the botanical garden, the QBG offers cooking demonstrations. Farmers markets don’t have to be open only be during the warmer months, though. The city Health Department has made fresh fruits and vegetables easily available with mobile food carts known as Green Carts. The program was implemented in 2009 and has shown significant positive effects. “Eating more fruits and vegetables prevents diabetes, heart disease, cancer, high blood pressure and many other illnesses,” the Health Department said. According to the department, those who eat fruits and vegetables three times or more a day are 42 percent less likely to die of a stroke and 24 percent less likely to die of heart disease than those who eat fruits or vegetables less than once a day. The Citizens’ Committee for Children of New York collected data from the first year of the Green Carts program and found that the fruit carts were frequently relied upon and that once consumers purchased from a vendor, they were likely to do so again. It’s through a farmers market that the connection between farm and city can truly be seen, including here in Queens. “Rural and urban are intrinsically connected,” Hurwitz said. “The market provides New Yorkers with a sense of place and vibrant center of community activity that is focused around wellness, health and social engagement and I think many opportunities for New Yorkers to engage in Q this way is a huge benefit.”

Queens farmers markets Flushing Queens Botanical Garden 43-50 Main St. Fridays, 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m., June 20-Nov. 23 Long Island City Socrates Sculpture Park Vernon Boulevard and Broadway Saturdays, 8 a.m.-4 p.m., June 7-Nov. 22 Astoria 14th Street at 31st Avenue and 31st Road Wednesdays, 8 a.m.-3 p.m., July 9–Nov. 26 Sunnyside Skillman Avenue and 42nd and 43rd streets Saturdays, 8 a.m.-3 p.m., May 10–Dec. 20 Jackson Heights 34th Avenue and 78th Street Sundays, 8 a.m.-3 p.m., year-round Corona 103rd Street and Roosevelt Avenue Fridays, 8 a.m.-3 p.m., July 11–Nov. 21 Elmhurst Elmhurst Hospital 41st Avenue at 80th and 81st streets Tuesdays, 8 a.m.-4 p.m., June 3–Dec. 23 Forest Hills Post Office 70th Avenue and Queens Boulevard Sundays, 8 a.m.-3 p.m., year-round

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continued from page 18 May 17, “105th Annual Magic Show,” Queens Theatre. For the first time at Queens Theatre, this show will include performances by the Society of American Magicians and commemorate the role of magic at the fairs at 8 pm. $45. May 17 and May 18, The Workers Art Coalition presents a temporary public art installation, The Workers Pavilion, at Queens Museum to serve as an outdoor exhibition that showcases original art, photography and writing by union workers, immigrant workers and participating labor groups. May 18, World’s Fair Anniversary Festival in Flushing Meadows Park.Games, inflatable rides, crafts and activities, tours of fair sculptures and structures, memorabilia, and free fun for the entire family, 1 to 4 p.m. followed by a concert. Free. May 18, “Build It!: A LEGO Workshop,” Queens Theatre, Special community events, where participants can learn to build LEGO models and will leave with a mini-model of the New York State Pavilion. Three sessions: 11 a.m., 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. Free. May 24 to May 26, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m, World’s Fair Train Show at Queens Botanical Garden, 43-50 Main St., Flushing. The Long Island Garden Railway Society will create a working “G-scale” model train exhibit in a World’s Fair-themed outdoor setting. On May 24, the festivities will

The 1964-65 World’s Fair at Flushing Meadows used the slogan “Peace Through Understanding.” The Unisphere was the centerpiece with millions of people flocking to the historic event right POSTCARD BY NY WORLD’S FAIR CORP. here in Queens. include food and craft vendors, a trackless train for rides through selected sections of QBG, and a 4 p.m. concert by John Yao’s Big Band, a 17-piece ensemble. Free with QBG admission. May 25, “The Designing Eye: Exposition Posters from 1893 – 2000,” on loan from a private collection, at the Queens

Museum, Flushing Meadows Park. Exhibiting 30 fair posters from a 100-year period and spanning several continents. Runs through Aug. 31. June 22, Pierre Montiel, a World’s Fair historian, will discuss the 1964 fair at 2 p.m. at the Queens Historical Society, 143-35 37 Ave., Flushing. Prior to the talk, the QHS

will open its exhibit on the people who came to the World’s Fair at 1:30 p.m. It will run until next May. Cost is $5. July 13, the QHS will present German Night with food and music from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. $10. July 19 the Queens Botanical Garden will hold two World’s Fair beer tasting sessions from noon to 3 p.m. and 4 to 7 p.m. The fest includes music, food and craft vendors. Tickets are required. Call (718) 886-3800, ext. 330. $30, early bird; $40; and $50 at door. July 27, 2:30-4:30 p.m. the QHS will hold Italian Night with food and music. $10. Aug. 10 is Polish Night and Aug. 24 is Irish Night. Sept. 28 at 2 p.m. the botanial garden will present Margaret Anne Tockarshewsky, a former staff member and now director of the New Haven Museum ,who will give a lecture on the histories of the fairs. Ongoing exhibits include a World’s Fair visible storage and gallery at the Queens Museum in Flushing Meadows Park with more than 900 pieces of artifacts and memorabilia, plus a World’s Fair adventure, a virtual experience and game transporting visitors back to the 1964 event. Also at the Queens Museum, permanently, is the Panorama of the City of New York, an installation from the 1964 fair. The former ride shows New York City’s Q five boroughs in miniature.

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Upcoming activities for ’64 World’s Fair anniversary

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fter a deep, extended stretch of cold weather, residents of Queens will welcome warm, sunny, seasonal days in the event they ever break out in the Northeastern United States this year. But healthcare officials are warning those who suffer from allergies or tend to attract mosquitoes to be prepared for the effects of the protracted, difficult winter. “The predictions, based on what I am reading, are that this could be one of the worst allergy seasons ever,” said Dr. Alan Roth, chairman of family medicine and ambulatory care at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center. Roth said that seasonal allergy patients began coming in early this month. His colleagues in the field are saying that the extended winter conditions have caused some plants to delay when they come into bloom. “Based on the winter you have, the changeover can be gradual, releasing less pollen and fewer histamines,” Roth said. But extended winter conditions that delay flowering in some plants that normally do so early in the spring could be leading this year to more types of plants coming into bloom at one time. “That could mean a really severe allergy season,” he said. But Roth also said that better medications for helping people deal with their allergies are becoming more available. “Antihistamines will treat symptoms,” he said. “But now there are some nasal steroids that have become available over the counter that treat the actual inflammation caused by inhaled allergens.” The damp conditions also are a bad portent for those suffering from mold allergies. As for mosquitoes, Roth said long, severe cold stretches can and do kill off mosquito eggs. But he also said the amount of snow and rain could establish excellent breeding grounds this spring in places where standing water is allowed to accumulate. “When we warn people about (mosquitoborne) West Nile virus, we tell them to remove standing water,” he said. “That’s where they breed — puddles, buckets, planters, old tires, anywhere that water can sit after it rains.” Statistics provided by the state’s Department of Health say that there have been 490 human cases of WNV and 37 deaths reported statewide since 2000. Eastern equine encephalitis, also transmitted by mosquitoes, is very rare but serious. Between five and 10 human cases are reported in the country each year. Five cases of EEE in people in New York

Deep, extended cold snaps in the winter of 2013-14 could lead to bumper crops of mosquitoes and allergy-irritating pollen this TOP PHOTO COURTESY U.S. CDC spring. State have been reported since 1971. These cases were reported in 1971, 1983, 2009, 2010 and 2011 and occurred in Oswego and Onondaga counties. All five patients died. The risk of getting EEE is highest from late July through September. People at the greatest risk of developing a severe case of the disease are those over 50 years of age and younger than 15 years of age. People with mild cases of EEE and WNV usually recover completely. The New York State DOH’s website says there are no human vaccines for EEE or WNV, and that prevention of mosquito bites is the most effective way to reduce risk. The state recommends several steps for reducing mosquito exposure, including: • Cover your skin as completely as possible if outside when mosquitoes are present and active; wear long sleeves, pants and socks; • Use insect repellent on exposed skin and follow label directions; • Make sure there are screens in your home’s windows and doors, and make sure they are free of rips, tears and holes; and • As Dr. Roth and his colleagues recommend, remove or drain all standing water around your home and proper ty, thus depriving mosquitoes of a place to breed Q and lay their eggs.

C M SG page 27 Y K Page 27 QUEENS CHRONICLE, Thursday, April 10, 2014

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Spring Guide 2014