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Volume 12 Issue No. 8 Feb. 25 - March 3, 2011

PAGE 8

,)'(43/54 After every school that has been tested showed elevated levels of PCBs, the City introduced a $708M plan for more than 700 buildings – including 130 Queens schools – that replaces aging fluorescent lights, which could be a source of cancer-causing chemicals. By Jessica Ablamsky…Page 3

PRESS Photos by Ira Cohen

Schools like Thomas Edison Vocational and Technical High School and IS 8 are some of the dozens on the list from Southeast Queens.

Online at www.QueensPress.com


News Briefs SJU Helps Needy For the thousands of children in New York City exposed to physical, sexual or domestic violence, effects range from anxiety to depression and juvenile delinquency. Those consequences are all the more tragic because modern psychologists know what works, said St. John’s University Professor Dr. Elissa Brown, founder and executive director of the PARTNERS program, which treats survivors of violence ages four to 17. Located in Queens since 2004, PARTNERS treats 100-120 kids each year, a number that could double with the aid of a four-year, $1 million federal grant. With overhead provided by St. John’s, every dollar that PARTNERS takes in goes directly toward services for survivors. Staff provide free therapy; train mental health students and professionals; help community leaders recognize signs of trauma and make appropriate mental health referrals; and consult with family violence centers to help them incorporate evaluation of their own services into their repertoire. Patients arrive at PARTNERS through a variety of referral methods, including from the City Administration for Children’s Services, the Legal Aid Society, the Queens Child Advocacy Center – or even self-referral. “We try to make ourselves as accessible as possible,� she said. To find out more information about PARTNERS or fill out a referral form, go

Another Victory: Queens DA Richard Brown (at podium) and Police Commissioner Ray Kelly (left of DA) announce the indictment of 14 individuals and the arrest of 48 others as part of a large-scale undercover narcotics investigation at the Baisley Park Housing Development and Rochdale Village.

Page 2 PRESS of Southeast Queens Feb. 25 - March 3, 2011

The path to your first home. The State of New York Mortgage Agency (SONYMA) offers first-time homebuyers: ‡RU\HDUIL[HGLQWHUHVWUDWHVWKDWDUHW\SLFDOO\ EHORZPDUNHW ‡)LQDQFLQJXSWR ‡)OH[LEOHXQGHUZULWLQJJXLGHOLQHV ‡'RZQSD\PHQWDVVLVWDQFH KLJKHURIRURIWKHORDQ DPRXQWRUXSWR  ‡1RSRLQWV ‡1RILQDQFLQJDGGRQV

For more information, call

1-800-382-HOME (4663) or visit www.nyshcr.org

to stjohns.edu/partners or call Beth Cory at (718) 990-2367.

$100K In Immigrant Aid Councilman Daniel Dromm (D-Jackson Heights) handed out $100,000 to local groups in an effort to maintain support for immigrant services in the borough. The considerable amount is part of the City Council’s Immigration Opportunity Initiative (IOI), a $4.5 million fund which provides English classes and legal services to low-income immigrants. Dromm, who serves as the chair of the Immigration Committee, hailed the firstever allocation of funding as a victory for which non-English speaking immigrants will benefit.

Carousel May Have Future Visitors to Forest Park this coming summer may get to ride the historic carousel that has been shuttered for the past few years. The City is due to release a Request for Proposals to find a vendor for the carousel as well as the carousel in Flushing Meadows Corona Park next month. The Forest Park Carousel, located just steps from Woodhaven Boulevard, was shuttered in 2008 after the former vendor, New York One LLC, let the carousel deteriorate. New York One also operates the carousel at Flushing Meadow Corona Park. That contract expires next year. In 2008, the carousel was closed and it has been locked up behind a tall chain-linked fence.


Presstime

$708M Fix For School PCB Problem

BY JESSICA ABLAMSKY

Schools Chancellor Cathie Black announced a $708 million capital plan to remove a toxin from City schools that can interrupt fetal development and lower IQ, trumping a rally organized by elected officials urging the City Dept. of Education to take immediate action. The DOE’s 10-year plan will commence this year with Requests for Proposals to replace all PCB containing lighting ballasts at 772 City school buildings and conduct a complete energy audit in each site. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has been in discussion with City officials for months and had strongly recommended systematic action. In addition to significant operational savings, the capital plan would reduce greenhouse gas emissions by more than 200,000 metric tons per year, the equivalent of removing 40,000 cars from the road. A decade-long timeline may not be good enough for some local politicians. A bill in the State Assembly with 42 cosponsors would force the DOE to upgrade the lighting units within five years. Polychlorinated biphenyls, or PCBs, were commonly used in the mid-to-late 20th century for a variety of purposes, most commonly as a cooling agent added to oil in power equipment. Due to their toxic effects, Congress banned the manufacture of PCBs in 1977,

but many schools were constructed before the ban took effect. At least 740 school buildings in the City, including 130 in Queens, may contain aging lighting ballasts and caulk laden with PCBs. A known cancer-causing agent, PCBs can cause immune system dysfunction and increase the risk of chronic health problems later in life, such as high blood pressure and diabetes. In collaboration with the EPA, the City School Construction Authority conducted a still-ongoing pilot study of five schools in the city, one in each borough. Results from schools in the Bronx, Brooklyn and Manhattan showed elevated levels of PCBs in the air in various classrooms and common areas in all three schools. PS 183 in Queens will be tested later this year. As part of an agreement with the EPA, the City had been required to put into place a management plan, but the timeline was unclear. Since Jan. 8, the EPA has performed spot checks at six school buildings in the city, three in Brooklyn, and one each in the Bronx, Manhattan and Staten Island.

Leaking lighting ballasts with elevated levels of PCBs were discovered at every building. If leaking lighting ballasts contain more than 50 parts per million PCBs, federal law requires immediate removal and disposal of the unit, and any PCB-contaminated material, at an EPA-approved facility. On Feb. 22, the EPA announced results from sampling at PS 45 in Brooklyn, where lighting ballasts were leaking at levels of up to 670,000 ppm. The capital plan came as a surprise to the bill’s supporters, said Assemblywoman Grace Meng (D-Flushing). Elected officials who contacted Mayor Mike Bloomberg in anticipation of the rally never received a response. “We’re in the middle of the press conference and then someone from the mayor’s press office comes passing out a press release, basically announcing capital funding,” she said. “PCB lights are exposing kids to health risks across the city every day. Their replacement can happen in two years with no cash outlet by the city at all. There is no reason for kids to be

exposed to PCBs for an extra eight years.” Private contractors known as energy service companies are prepared to front the City money for the energy efficient lighting units, with repayment based on energy savings. Other financial solutions could include a low-interest loan from the New York Power Authority, which is already slowly replacing lighting ballasts, said Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal (D-Manhattan), the bill’s primary sponsor. “The City was talking about wild figures like a billion dollars a few weeks ago,” said Miranda Massie, director of litigation for New York Lawyers for the Public Interest. “It is clear that they can get this taken care of with no cash outlay and much more quickly.” A major unanswered question is source of funding, said Councilman Mark Weprin (D-Oakland Gardens). “In these fiscal times, we want to know where the money is coming from,” he said. “I’m nervous about how this will be done, if it will be done in a way that the children will be safe. There are a lot of questions that have to be answered, but it’s a good first step.” In a statement, the EPA agreed. “We are reviewing the City’s proposed plan and timeline and we will respond soon with our recommendations to the City,” the statement read. Reach Reporter Jessica Ablamsky at jablamsky@queenstribune.com or (718) 3577400, Ext. 124.

Landlord Lets Tenants Feel The Cold

BY SASHA AUSTRIE

thing as simple as scrambled eggs can take at least 20 minutes. “I don’t care about the roaches and rats, the little leaks,” Taylor said. “I just want my heat and gas so that I can cook for my kids.” Her electric bill has more than doubled in the last two months; it used to be $86, now it is $179. Taylor moved into the property eight years ago. At the time, there were small issues she overlooked. The burgundy, dirtstained carpet, which was supposed to be replaced, still lies on her living room floor. In 2005, the apartment was infested with rats and roaches. When Taylor called the landlord, which at the time was Group Kappa Corp, she was met with a bevy of inane questions. “What time do the rats come out? How many did you see? Have you ever thought about getting a cat?” She said because of the landlord’s lack of action, she called 311 and HPD came to exterminate the vermin. Taylor has not had contact with her landlord since 2005. “The landlord hasn’t spoken a word to me,” Taylor said. “I regret moving here.” Group Kappa is not listed as her landlord and the owners of the business are embroiled in a mortgage fraud scandal. An entity linked to Group Kappa Plaza Real Estate said it is not responsible for Taylor’s unit. According to the Dept. of Finance, the property is owned by Edward Hunt.

Like Taylor, many of her neighbors are suffering the same fate of shut-off utilities. Her next-door neighbor has no water and a few apartments that are hooked up to the boiler in her basement also have no heat. Their residences are part of a 28-building, 58-unit complex and has 63 outstanding violations. In early December, Sanders promised to do his utmost to get residents of the complex heat within a week. A source in Sanders’ office said though heat has been turned on for some tenants, landlords are again shutting of the utilities within weeks. Other than Sanders, other members of the Southeast Queens delegation are getting involved. Assemblyman Bill Scarborough (D-Jamaica) said he has been in touch with U.S. Rep. Gregory Meeks (D-Jamaica) and State Sen. Shirley Huntley (D-Jamaica). Scarborough said the U.S. Attorney’s office is currently investigating instances of mortgage fraud at the complex. He said landlords have swapped the buildings back and forth so they could turn a profit and avoid responsibility for the property. A few of the landlords were indicted and linked to mortgage fraud in other properties around the City. Reach Reporter Sasha Austrie at saustrie@queenspress.com, or (718) 3577400, Ext. 123.

Feb. 25 - March 3, 2011 PRESS of Southeast Queens Page 3

Melanie Taylor’s 8-year-old son casually pulls on a pair of blue winter gloves and then dons a pair of yellow rubber gloves. This routine is repeated day after day by members of Taylor’s household when the kitchen sink fills up with dishes. “No child should know how to do that,” Taylor, 31, said. Taylor has been without heat in her apartment at 183-07 141st Ave. for three years, and in late December, her hot water and gas were surreptitiously turned off. Due to the essential utilities being shutoff, Taylor is facing the possibility of losing her Section 8 status if the amenities are not reinstated or she does not move. “Section 8 said they are not paying no more due to the problems in the apartment,” she said. “Even though it is not your fault, they still hold you accountable.” Though New York City Housing Authority, which administers Section 8, gave Taylor a year to find another apartment, the mother of three will soon run out of options. She has until April 20 to find a new apartment. “I’m trying to find something for me and my kids,” she said. “It’s really hard. [Landlords] don’t do their repairs and we have to suffer.” Taylor’s unit has three Class C violations, which are deemed immediately

hazardous, for lack of heat, gas and hot water. The Dept. of Housing Preservation and Development usually mends Class C violations if the landlord does not take appropriate action in a certain amount of time, then bills the owner, said Eric Bederman, an agency spokesman. He said a lien is placed on the property and when the owner tries to sell or refinance the building, the City recoups its money if the landlord refuses to pay. HPD has created work orders for the repairs needed in Taylor’s unit and the Division of Maintenance is reviewing the case. Though a spokesman for Councilman James Sanders (D-Laurelton) said the councilman is working with NYCHA to temporarily relocate Taylor, a NYCHA spokesman denied that Taylor was a client. “We don’t have anybody by that name at that address,” she said. Sanders’ spokesman said, “We are trying to work with [Taylor] to see if we can temporarily downsize her and see how that will affect her voucher.” Before her gas was turned off, Taylor used the oven to heat the living room and kitchen. A heater in her bedroom keeps the three warm at night, while another heater recently lent to her is used in the front of the home. Taylor now uses a hot plate to cook for her family; cooking dinner can take up to four hours and some-


Seeking Ways To Keep Kids Busy BY SASHA AUSTRIE

Page 4 PRESS of Southeast Queens Feb. 25 - March 3, 2011

They converge at street corners and file into local businesses at the end of every school day in Downtown Jamaica. By midafternoon, Parsons Boulevard, a main artery leading into the area, is rife with students from nine schools encroaching on the avenues and streets in the district. "No other transportation hub in New York City has the amount of young people," said Frederica Jeffries, Queens supervising assistant district attorney. The Greater Jamaica Development Corp. spearheaded a program dubbed "Engaging the Young People of Jamaica" and engaged a panel to find solutions, which would occupy and keep children off the street after school hours. Jefferies said the young people need job opportunities, training and programs that can develop their talents. Dr. Wilma Hunt-Watts of GJDC said the ritual of convening on the streets every afternoon is because "our children do not have a place to go. "I think that is one of the biggest problems not only in Southeast Queens, but around the country." Panelists offered their programs and resolutions. Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning Executive Director Phillip Willis said his group is adding art programs that would shore up the holes left by disbanded arts programs in schools. He said the organiza-

tion is also trying to acquire funds for a media center. "We are very much directly addressing [the issue,]" he said. "We feel this is a critical need in our community." Jamaica YMCA Executive Director Cedric Dew said the students' lives are so structured that sometimes they just need to let loose. He said though there are programs out there for young people, there

may be financial barriers that keep them idle. The YMCA is trying to make its programs available to more children for free. "The YMCA put 75,000 Strong Kids Cards out throughout the City," Dew said. Some 5,600 cards were given out to children in the Jamaica area. Father Darryl James of Grace Episcopal Church said churches, mosques and temples need to be active in the commu-

nity during more than just worship hours. The Rev. Kenneth Richardson, an associate pastor at the Greater Allen AME Cathedral, said the church takes a "spiritual long-term approach." Allen has 16 youth programs and Richardson advocates including children in the church's activities. Reach Reporter Sasha Austrie at saustrie@queenspress.com, or (718) 3577400, Ext. 123.

City Seeks To Discern JFK Air Cargo Future BY DOMENICK RAFTER New York City Economic Development Corp. is looking to explore ways to improve the air cargo system at JFK Airport. The EDC issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) seeking a consultant to conduct an in-depth study of the air cargo industry, focusing on ways to increase and expand the industry at JFK, the top international cargo airport in the region. “The air cargo industry, which employs thousands of New Yorkers and generates billions of dollars in economic activity, is an essential piece of the region’s economy,” said NYCEDC President Seth Pinsky. “With air cargo competition increasing across the country, this study will help identify opportunities to keep our region competitive and growing.” The airports in Queens are the No. 1 generator of jobs for the borough.

The winning consultant will be responsible for researching other cargo gateways in the U.S., like Anchorage, Alaska or FedEx’s hub, Memphis, Tenn., the two busiest cargo airports in the country, and determine JFK’s competitiveness in the field. The consultant must also research market conditions and trends for air cargo, the specific costs and benefits of doing business at JFK, and opportunities for infrastructure and financing programs to encourage industry growth. The findings of the study will address opportunities to retain and expand the industry. EDC spokesman Kyle Skerlov said RFP responses are due by March 22 and the EDC hopes to finish the study by the end of the year. The study would be focused mainly on JFK, which handles 57 percent of the total regional air cargo volume. JFK is the region’s leading international cargo gateway, processing 1.3 million tons

of air freight in 2010 and directly supporting 49,000 jobs, more than half of the total jobs in the industry region-wide, but the cargo industry at New York’s main airport has been reeling recently. From 2006 to 2009, air cargo processed at JFK dropped from 1.63 million tons to 1.14 million tons. In 2009, JFK’s cargo volume dropped 21.2 percent from 2008 levels. As of the end of 2010, the numbers are still below 2008 levels. Nationwide, cargo numbers in every major cargo airport were down in 2009 except for Memphis, which recorded a slight uptick of less than a tenth of a percent, but no drop was a drastic as JFK’s. The study is being funded by the New York City Industrial Development Agency and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. Reach Reporter Domenick Rafter at drafter@queenstribune.com or (718) 3577400, Ext. 125.


City App Project Aims To Help All BY JESSICA ABLAMSKY Wish you knew your subway train was delayed before you left the office, or where to find the cheapest Ugg boots in Queens? Some very clever techies may have the answer. Using data sets from more than 40 city agencies and commissions, the BigApps 2.0 Competition features phone, text and web apps from developers who hope to score cash, wide exposure and a meeting with Mayor Mike Bloomberg. Sponsored by the City Economic Development Corp., the contest boasts categories that range from Best Overall Application to Student Award, and include two popular choice winners chosen by public vote. With a dizzying seven pages of apps to review, here are a few of our favorites. CiviGuard Stay safe with CiviGuard. When there's an emergency in your area, the app lets you know. It monitors news sources and social media sites for breaking news, and lets a grab bag of agencies send out alerts. If you're lost, trapped or just fine, the app lets you report back to authorities and loved ones with one click. Available for iPhone, iPad and Android devices, with text and email available for non-smart and PDA mobiles. Clean Plates Looking for the perfect grass-fed steak,

gourmet vegetarian dinner or naturally sweetened dessert? This print, mobile and Web guide has the answer. Satisfy your gluten-free friend with a list of restaurants evaluated on criteria that include atmosphere, taste, type of cuisine, healthfulness and quality of ingredients. cultureNOW Experience Manhattan in the most rewarding way possible - for free. This Museum Without Walls app is a self-guided tour of Downtown art and architecture, complete with maps, podcasts and insights from the artists, architects and historians who have shaped the borough we love to hate. Featuring 1,000 sites and six walking tours, from Revolutionary War Sites in New York City to Jewish Arrival in Lower Manhattan, maybe you'll finally find out whom that horse and rider in Central Park is honoring. Goodzer This "I don't know how I lived without it" Web site might not change your life, but it could make your shopping trips a little easier. Need folding chairs, but don't know who sells them cheapest? Go to goodzer.com, type in your product and zip code and it will come back with a list of who's selling them. Searchable by relevance, price and distance. Watch your back, Amazon.

Want to know when that next train is coming? There's an app for that. SubwayArrival Transportation apps were quite the popular feature, but our headache-sparing favorite was SubwayArrival. An elegant solution to a confounding problem, this iPhone app maps in real time the location and arrival time of all City subways. Best of all, you don't have to do anything. Using the cell phone's own technology, the application automatically detects when the user leaves a train. No, it's not magic. To detect your train's

location, the app tracks the way your cell phone changes base stations, periods of no reception and your proximity to a subway exit. But the app needs users to work - 10,000 of them, so get it now for free on the iPhone app store. Coming soon to an Android and Blackberry phone near you. Voting is open until 5 p.m. March 9. To vote, go to nycbigapps.com. Reach Reporter Jessica Ablamsky at jablamsky@queenstribune.com or (718) 3577400, Ext. 124.

Feb. 25 - March 3, 2011 PRESS of Southeast Queens Page 5


OF SOUTHEAST QUEENS 150-50 14th Road Whitestone, NY 11357 (voice) (718) 357-7400 fax (718) 357-9417 email news@queenspress.com The PRESS of Southeast Queens Associate Publisher

In Our Opinion: Arnold Thibou Executive Editor:

Brian Rafferty

Editorial For The Children The news this week said that the City will spend nearly three quarters of a billion dollars to upgrade aging lighting systems in our schools comes as a welcome response to parents who have been concerned for their children's health. The aging fluorescent lighting ballasts in school buildings across Queens and the other boroughs have been cause for alarm, as every single building tested under a pilot program between the City and the Environmental Protection Agency has tested positive for high concentrations of the cancer-causing compound. We applaud the City for - in the middle of talking about laying off teachers - finding the money to make a direct and immediate solution to what has quickly become a growing concern. We're still not sure where the funds are coming from, but we certainly are glad to see that the health and safety of our children is paramount in this decision. We are, however, waiting for the other shoe to drop.

Contributing Editor:

Marcia Moxam Comrie Production Manager:

Shiek Mohamed Queens Today Editor

Regina Vogel Photo Editor: Ira Cohen

Reporters: Harley Benson Sasha Austrie Joseph Orovic Domenick Rafter Jessica Ablamsky Editorial Intern: Angy Altamirano Jason Banrey

Art Dept:

Letters They All Spend To The Editor: In his Feb. 10 column, Henry Stern states that "the principle fault line in fiscal policy is‌ between spenders and savers." He then proceeds to get in a dig at "the Democratic Left" by accusing them of being among the former. In fact, everyone in politics is a spender, Republicans and Democrats alike. That is what governments do. The real fault line in fiscal policy is between those who think that our problems will be solved by slashing budgets and imposing all manner of austerity measures while continuing to borrow money against future generations, and those who know that a lasting solution can only come from a system of

Sara Gold Rhonda Leefoon Candice Lolier Barbara Townsend Advertising Director James Mammarella Sr. Account Executive Shelly Cookson

Page 6 PRESS of Southeast Queens Feb. 25 - March 3, 2011

Advertising Executives Merlene Carnegie

A Queens Tribune Publication. Š Copyright 2011 Tribco, LLC

Michael Schenkler, President & Publisher

Michael Nussbaum, Vice President, Associate Publisher

progressive taxation that forces the wealthy to step up in this time of crisis and do their part to keep the society afloat. Unfortunately neither Republicans nor Democrats are willing to have a meaningful conversation about the duty of those who have so much towards their fellow citizens who have so little. Until this situation changes we can expect no positive change for ordinary Americans. And lest someone dismiss my argument with those dreaded conversationstopping labels of "socialism" or "communism," let me remind them that what I am describing is precisely what the U.S. government did in the 1930s and 40s, and it is precisely what got us out of the last economic crisis of this magnitude - the great depression.

Letters Where is FDR when you need him? Christian Collins, Richmond Hill

Legalize It To The Editor: The NYPD making possession of marijuana No. 1 for arrests of more than 50,000 people in 2010 is nothing to be proud of. The crusade against marijuana - along with tobacco, pornography, adult entertainment and unhealthy food - still continues by both government and those who believe they know best what is good for you is a waste of taxpayers' monies. Consumption of marijuana for both medical and recreational use has been part of mainstream America, transcending generations. Despite the best efforts of both government and the Moral Majority social police to outlaw marijuana consumption, just like alcohol prohibition in the 1920s, both have been total failures. Creative entrepreneurs will always meet the citizens' desire, regardless of government approval. Consumers have voted with their dollars, making marijuana consumption a multibilliondollar enterprise today. Legalize it and add a sales tax. Revenues will more than cover the costs of any abuse. Our tax dollars would be better used if police and judges spend more time prosecuting those who commit real crimes against individuals or property than going after those who consume or distribute marijuana.

Citizens have more to fear from murder, arson, rape, muggings, robberies, auto and identity theft or home break-ins along with ever increasing levels of confiscatory taxation and debt by government than individuals who get high in the privacy of their own home. Law enforcement authorities should be free to pursue those who commit real crimes against citizens and property. At 18, you are old enough to vote, be a parent, pay taxes, own a car, take out a bank loan, serve in the military and die for your country - but not consume marijuana. What consenting adults consume, inhale, perform, read or view in the privacy of their own home or private social club isn't the concern of government. Individual economic and civil liberties prosper best when government stays out of both the bedroom and marketplace. Let us hope that we have finally learned from the obvious failures of Prohibition. It is time to permit consenting adults to access any socalled illegal products or substances such as pot without fear from government harassment. Larry Penner, Great Neck

WRITE ON: The PRESS of Southeast Queens,

150-50 14th Rd. Whitestone, NY 11357 email news@queenspress.com fax: (718) 357-9417

Desperate Times Creating Desperados A Personal Perspective By MARCIA MOXAM COMRIE They say desperate times call for desperate measures. Indeed this is true. So true in fact, that a "Hollywoodized" version of a hiker's predicament is up for an Academy Award this Sunday. Played to perfection by James Franco, Aron Ralston was a 20something hiker whose arm became trapped under a boulder on a mountain hike. He self-amputated the limb, freeing himself after 127 hours of anguish and the reality of imminent death. It was a desperate time that required a desperate act, and the young man did what he had to do. But people robbing the elderly because the economy is bad? That "desperate measure," is not acceptable under any circumstance. Three alleged thieves have moved on from the ritzy Riverdale

section of the Bronx, where they are said to have posed as DEPtype employees who went around ringing bells at homes where they had determined elderly people lived alone. They proceeded to clean them out of cash and small expensive items such as jewelry. Reportedly, that area got too hot to handle in light of a police investigation; so they've (allegedly) taken their evil act on the road to the West Village in Manhattan, where they continue to prey on the elderly using the same ruse. Desperate times, yes. Acceptable measures, no. But if they think they are enduring hard times, now just wait until they get caught. It is inevitable that they will be caught. In fact, there are stills from surveillance videos being circulated right now. They are hazy, but someone will recognize and report them soon. One can only hope that they'll

be caught before they make their way over the Brooklyn or Queensborough Bridge into these two boroughs to continue their robbing spree. Preying on the elderly is as bad as harming children. How despicable can you get? It is a frightful thing to know that someone could ring your mother's or grandmother's bell pretending to be a sanctioned public worker and abuse that trust to rob them blind. And who's to say that it won't escalate into violence against those helpless homeowners too? My grandparents' generation used to warn against lying. They used to say, "If you lie, you'll steal and if you steal, you'll kill." That was a very scary prospect to us as children; but there may be some truth there. These guys who are gaining what purports to be legal access could eventually get violent.

At this time, they may not be physically accosting their victims. They are distracting and ransacking. But what if someone gets wise and tries to object to being robbed? The thieves could very well get angry and harm someone in desperation. There is also the fear that copycat acts could start popping up all over the place. One has to wonder what makes a person feel the entitlement to "go get mine," when they're down on their luck. Well it's not yours to get, don't you get that? Sadly, too many people don't and that is why the jails are perpetually full. In the meantime, those of us with elderly relatives living alone need to start visiting more and to make them aware of the potential dangers they face. These are indeed desperate times, but our measures still need to be legal and harmless.


New York, New York, It’s A Wonderful Town

By MICHAEL SCHENKLER My current Facebook status: “Your car is German. Your vodka is Russian. Your pizza is Italian. Your kebab is Turkish. Your democracy is Greek. Your coffee is Brazilian. Your movies are American. Your tea is Tamil. Your shirt is Indian. Your oil is Norwegian. Your electronics are Chinese. Your numbers are Arabic & your letters Latin. Yet you complain your neighbor is an immigrant? Pull yourself together and stand with them all.”

LULUS CORRUPT Manhattan State Senator Liz Krueger in the Daily News modifies the long reform wish list citizens of New York must have to make their legislature anything but pathetic. To independent redistricting, campaign finance, (and allow me to add member items, off the books deficits and on-time balanced budgets) Krueger proclaims: “But there’s one practice that’s

so routine it’s often overlooked on the reform wish list: the way rankand-file members appear to sell their power, i.e. their votes, to par t y leader ship. T his is done through ‘lulus,’ the pet name for the large stipends doled out to those who are given leadership positions. “The most common way to acquire a lulu? By securing a chairmanship or ranking position on a commit tee or a leadership t itle within your political conference. The se role s are distributed by party leaders to members of their own conference, both in the Senate and Assembly, with the highest positions and lulus going to majority members and lower ranking positions and lulus going to minority members. “At the end of the year, lulus cost the state $2.5 million, which is admittedly only a drop in the fiscal budget. But it’s fundamentally corrupting when a partisan leader

has direct control over thousands of dollars in your salary.” Krueger points out the practice exists on both side s of the aisle. But she highlights the outof-the-ordinary lulus given by Republican leadership to the four members of the breakaway Independent Democratic Conference. “What followed was not so surprising,” proclaims Krueger. “After accepting the lulus, these IDC members suddenly began voting in lockstep with the Republicans. The most egregious instance came with a vote that allowed the Republicans to change the rules of the Senate and circumvent the State Constitution to strip Lieutenant Governor Robert Duffy, a Democrat, of h is abilit y to cast a tiebreaking vote in the event that the Senate is tied. Coincidence? I don’t believe it,” Krueger accuses. Krueger has always refused lulus and is now calling upon her colleagues in both the Senate and

Assembly to refuse theirs. Liz, this is Albany, don’t hold your breath. REDISTRICTING While we’re on the “upstanding,” “reform-minded” State Legislature – the most dysfunctional of all 50 states, there are a sufficient number of members of both houses signed on to enact independent redistricting – the true first step in real reform. I apologize for the cynicism, but in spite of the math being there – with members publically signed on and pledged — and some noble New York elders like Ed Koch and Henry Stern monitoring and driving the process, it ain’t gonna happen. Hair splitting, the two houses (intentionally) passing different final bills which they will be unable to reconcile, a last minute tweak of independently drawn lines by leadership or some supposed par-

liamentary or compromise provision will allow legislative leadership to make sure the lines favor their party, their favorites and insure that our state spends the next 10 years playing in the same muck and mire the State Legislature has provided for much of our lifetime. It will take an uncompromising, heroic, reform-minded Governor to veto anything less than real independent redistricting. I fear that such heroism exists only in fairy tales. But nonetheless, I hope. MSchenkler@QueensPress.com

Layoff of 4,666 Teachers Proposed After State & Fed Cuts issue of teacher layoffs is linked to the mayor’s attempt to change the LIFO (last in, first out) law in New York State. Under that law, seniorit y dictate s t hat t he newest, usually younger, teachers are the first to be laid off. The parties Stern involved all deny any linkage, but that is the way negotiations, if any, are conducted. Besides, it is probably true that there is no linkage now, but who knows what will happen down the road. The law that teachers must be laid off in reverse order of seniority is widely regarded as an impediment to quality education. President Obama and U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan know this, as does anyone who is concerned with student outcomes rather than lifetime jobs for people, some of whom long ago lost their ability or willingness to communicate. On the other hand, LIFO protects teachers from arbitrary actions by political, corrupt or simply stupid supervisors. OBSERVATIONS OF A SMALL BOY I know from first-hand experience (as a kid) in New York City public schools that some teachers were wonderful - I still remember their names today - a handful were terrible, and most were all right. One of the best, Dr. Julius H. Hlavaty, first chairman of the math department at Bronx Science, was fired for not answering questions about his membership in the Communist Party. He was ordered reinstated with back pay by the courts. Mrs. Mildred Waltzer, who at the time taught at P.S. 152-M, on

Nagle Avenue, was a wonder ful woman who cared deeply about her students. She taught an ungraded class called O.A. (open air), which would now be considered special ed. She later became a principal in East Harlem. She wanted to adopt me, but fortunately my parents resisted her kind offer. One of the worst, A.A., taught in Junior High School 52-M, appropriately on Academy Street. She was perpetually annoyed, although we had no idea why. One day, another teacher in the school, a Mrs. Good, died. The next morning, A.A. told her class, 8B-R, which included me: “Do you know why Mrs. Good died? It was because she was too good. I won’t make that mistake.” I can’t say she frightened me (I was 11), but the fact that I remember what she said so many years later indicates that she did make a strong impression. There was an art teacher, G., who was so fat she couldn’t fit down the aisles between the children’s desks. When she tried, the bad kids tried to poke her with their rulers. I felt sorry for her. In a way, teacher quality didn’t mat ter t hat much because the smart kids knew the material anyway, but there were others who did rely on the teachers for information and instruction. Other teachers at 52, in math and history, were very good. One science teacher spent most of the class time fooling around with developed 13-year-old girls, who he brought to the front of the room to sit by him. At Bronx Science the teachers were generally better. Some of the science teachers had Ph.D. degrees, but they were unable to get jobs in science because of the Great

Depression and because they were Jews. Things were really different many years ago, which young people often have no idea of, although they do know a lot about computer s, v ideo game s, cel l phones and other devices. Each generation masters different skills. The purpose of this reminiscence is to make the point that teachers vary widely in ability, dedication and mental health. If thousands must be laid off, the City should be able to get rid of the worst ones, regardless of seniority. It is really bad for kids to be stuck with an incompetent or host ile teacher, e special ly if t he y rely on him or her to teach them English, or how to read. After a number of years, some teachers get sick and tired of other people’s children, while others don’t know how to control a classroom.

School can be a wonder ful place for instruction and socializat ion. It can also ut terly fail to achieve those goals. Empowering principals and teachers is important, and school officials should not be intimidated by hostile and belligerent parents. On the other hand, sometimes the parents are right, and principals should have the judgment to make decisions on the merits, not simply on the basis of politics or threats. I have serious doubts that public school children are being taught and supervised in the best possible way. The problem is that either we don’t know the best way, or the people who do know aren’t being listened to. Can the new Chancellor provide instruction or guidance in the most serious and compelling issue of public policy? StarQuest@NYCivic.org

Not 4 Publication.com by Dom Nunziato

Feb. 25 - March 3, 2011 PRESS of Southeast Queens Page 7

By HENRY J. STERN The proposed cit y budget is $65.6 billion. That is a $300 million reduction from the current year, almost one half of one per cent of the total budget, and represents a serious effor t to control costs. Henry The most striking part of this year’s budget, covering FY 2012 (which begins July 1, 2011) is the projected reduction in the Department of Education staff by 6,166 teachers. Attrition will account for 1,500 vacancies, leaving 4,666 layoffs on the table. This is the opening gambit in what will be a four-month struggle. The city budget is adopted each year by the City Council and the Mayor in June, and a series of public hearings will be held this spring. It is highly unlikely that the final result of the process will be the dismissal of 4,666 teachers, but we believe it is cer tain that the teaching force in Sept. 2011 will be somewhat smaller than it is today. The scope of the proposed layoffs suggest that the mayor reduced the city’s education budget. In fact, he did not do that. He said that the city will spend $2.2 billion more on education next year than it has this year. He attributed the shortfall to a cut of $800 million in Federal funds and the loss of $1.1 billion in state aid. Governor Cuomo disputes the size of the cut, saying that part of the state reduction came a year ago, during the Paterson administration. But whenever the reduction came, the money is not in the school budget for FY 2012. There is speculation that the


For The Long Haul:

Civil Rights Titan Bond Looks Back BY JESSICA ABLAMSKY “It is difficult to tell people you used to sit in the back of the bus,” said Julian Bond, a civil rights leader whose lifelong activism has inspired generations. His name is not often uttered without mention of the seminal Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee he helped found. SNCC – pronounced SNICK – is the 1960s-era group whose members, at great personal risk, organized lunch counter sit-ins, freedom rides and the Mississippi Freedom Summer. It is a time in his life for which Bond hopes he will always be remembered. “I’m quite proud of that,” he said. “That’s not the only thing I’ve done that I’m proud of, but I’m proud of that and I’m happy to be remembered for that.” The author, activist, professor and subject of several biographies, with 20 years in the Georgia State Legislature under his belt, serves on the boards of organizations ranging from the NAACP to the Southern Law Poverty Center. He recently spoke at Queens College, in honor of a new addition to the Civil Rights Archive. “I have retired a couple of times from my teaching jobs, but they kept on making me an offer I couldn’t refuse,” he said. “I like what I do. I haven’t seen any reason to stop.” The Politics of Compromise Still, the 71-year-old said he has yet to accomplish what he is most proud of.

It will be many years before freedom and justice become a reality across America, said Bond, discussing a realization that came many years ago. “When I started out in the movement when I was 18, I and countless others thought these things would be settled pretty quickly,” he said. “I think most of us now realize that we are still in it for the long haul and it is not likely to reach total solutions in our lifetimes. We’ll have to keep plugging away, and those who come after us will keep plugging away. “All of the peoples of the country who are denied their rights have to be included in this. I have special interest in peoples of color because I am one of them, but I don’t think I stand ahead of any of them in who gets their rights first.” Among those rights are gay marriage and abortion, for which Bond has provided outspoken and sometimes controversial support. “You don’t have to respect idiocy,” he said. “You don’t have to respect wrongheadedness. If you think that gay people shouldn’t marry in your church, that’s okay with me.” But marriage is as much a right as it is a rite, he explained, adding, “If you don’t like abortion, don’t have one.” When viewed through the lens of a society whose black and white populations were once separated by a seemingly insurmountable chasm, Bond does not think Americans are more polarized today. The current political environment is

Page 8 PRESS of Southeast Queens Feb. 25 - March 3, 2011

The James Forman Library Collection Bond’s lecture celebrated Queens College’s recent acquisition of James Forman’s personal library and recordings. As one of the founders of the influential Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) in the 1960s, Bond worked closely with Forman, SNCC’s executive secretary. Forman was a principal organizer of the 1963 March on Washington and the Freedom Rides and the key framer of the “Black Manifesto,” which demanded reparations to African Americans in payment for the hardships of slavery. He remained active in promoting the cause of blacks throughout his career, including traveling to Africa and Europe on behalf of the Black Panther party. The Forman library consists of approximately 2,000 books, over 2,100 pamphlets, academic journals and printed ephemera as well as a variety of audio and moving image material – a major addition to the history of Civil Rights in America. This contribution

by the Forman family is the latest acquisition in the college’s expanding archive of original materials from the Civil Rights era. These materials are being organized and catalogued, with selections digitized by the school’s faculty and graduate students for permanent use by the campus community, researchers and the general public. The Queens College Civil Rights Archive, begun with donations from a significant number of alumni who were involved in the movement, has generated considerable interest among historians and scholars. One of the college’s civil activists was student Andrew Goodman, who was slain in Mississippi in 1964 with two other young men; all three were “Freedom Summer” volunteers trying to register blacks to vote in the South. The Chaney-Goodman-Schwerner Clock Tower of Rosenthal Library, a highly visible borough landmark, is named in their honor.

“harder because I can’t remember any time in my lifetime that we’ve had one political party determined to say ‘no’ to everything,” he said. “If that is going to be the case, you can’t get anything done.” Bond is not coy about his feelings for the Republican Party, saying that its members are unwilling to compromise. He does think the divisions can be healed. “As you push and push, things will happen,” he said. People have to get “down in the trenches” and make sure that the politicians who are getting elected and reelected “make some sense.” “What happened now is that the lunatics have taken over the asylum,” he said. Compromise is a virtue he learned to appreciate over Queens College student Jennifer Meza with Civil Rights activist Julian Bond during his Feb. 17 visit to the time. “If you and I are having an school. argument, I will compromise up to my principles,” he said. “But I won’t compromise my principles. against Bond in 1986 for the CongresIf you can’t find some common ground sional seat Lewis still holds. with me, we can’t get anyplace.” Of his time in politics, Bond said, “I enjoyed it a tremendous amount. I’m sorry The Bond Legacy it had to end, but I’m not the kind of perJulian is not the first Bond to stand son who looks back all the time.” firmly behind the courage of his convictions. The Spark that Lit Born a slave, his grandfather James Based on a by-the-numbers comparigraduated from Berea College and in the son, Bond said the current generation’s early 20th century helped found a school quest for equality comes up lacking; his for black children and spoke out against was the last to work towards social jussegregation. tice, work that was done particularly, Julian’s father, Horace Mann, was the but not exclusively, by African Amerifirst black president of historically black cans. Lincoln University and conducted some “We marched and organized and we of the research for Brown v. Board of sustained that for 10 years,” he said. “I Education. think part of the reason is that people “My brother and sister and I had it put who are my age who lived through this in our heads that we should do something sometimes didn’t want their children to similar as we came along,” Bond said. He know about it. This was a bad time, and if fought for the right to take a seat in the you thought that you could protect your Georgia House of Representatives, win- children by separating them from it, you ning three times – once in 1965 and twice did.” in 1966 – and was blocked by a House The history teacher believes that anthat refused him entry due to his vocal other problem is a high school curricuopposition to the Vietnam War. lum that does not emphasize the civil After a unanimous vote by the U.S. rights movement. This complicated piece Supreme Court, he went on to serve four of history teaches a lesson that still resoterms in the House and six in the State nates: when people work together they Senate. can win. As a member of a relatively conserva“When Rosa Parks sat down on the tive legislature, he did not accomplish bus by herself, she prompted others to do everything he set out to, but got his way what she did,” he said. “She could not do often enough to leave his mark. it by herself.” For Bond, it does not seem Bond played a big hand in redistrict- so long ago that he was forced to sit in ing Georgia after the 1970 and 1980 the back of the bus. Census, which paved the way for more “I’ve thought when I die I want to have black people running for public office. a double-sided tombstone,” he said. “On He also helped a single woman adopt a one side, it will say, ‘Race man.’ Meanchild, pass a bill that established a pio- ing, I didn’t put my race above other races neering sickle cell anemia testing pro- but I thought it equaled other races. On gram and organize the state’s black cau- the other side it would say, ‘Easily cus. amused.’” His political career came to a premaReach Reporter Jessica Ablamsky at ture end at the hands of fellow SNCC jablamsky@queenstribune.com or (718) 357alumnus John Lewis, who won a primary 7400, Ext. 124.


Police Blotter Compiled by DOMENICK RAFTER

From the DA

Driving On Crack

A Long Island woman has pleaded guilty to first-degree assault for driving while under the influence of crack cocaine and at a high rate of speed through a South Jamaica construction zone – marked off with lights and orange and white striped barrels – and striking and seriously injuring two workers. Yolanda Silvera, 29, of 84 Franklin Ave., Malverne, pleaded guilty to first-degree assault on Feb. 23. According to the charges, Silvera, who does not hold

a valid driver’s license, was driving a 2002 Nissan at approximately 60 miles per hour and arguing with David Kruger, a passenger in the car, when she approached the intersection of Rockaway Boulevard and 150th Street in South Jamaica at about 10:40 p.m. on Thursday, Aug. 13, 2009. Although other vehicles were stopped at the light, Silvera failed to slow down and instead veered right into the barrier leading up to the construction zone and struck Michael Hudson, 36, and Robert Keller, 35, who were working at the site. The force of the impact sent one of the men flying over the car’s hood.

Don’t Leave Your Retirement Planning to Chance

When police arrived at the scene, they observed the front end of the Nissan smashed, the windows blown out and bloodstains on the trunk and rear passenger door. Silvera was later arrested and made statements to the police that she had smoked crack cocaine prior to the accident. Hudson and Keller were transported to a local Queens hospital. Hudson sustained facial trauma and injuries to his lower extremities that required the amputation of his lower left leg. Keller, who also sustained injuries to his lower extremities, has undergone multiple surgeries since the incident. The passenger, Kruger, 40, of 2300 Fowler St., Bellmore, pleaded guilty to seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, a Class A misdemeanor, last year, and is expected to be sentenced on March 1. Silvera was ordered to return to court on March 11, when she is expected to be sentenced to nine years in prison and five years’ post-release supervision.

104th Precinct

Bank Robber Sought

The NYPD is seeking the public’s assistance in locating a suspect wanted in connection with a bank robbery in Maspeth. On Wednesday, Feb. 16, at 10:53 a.m., the suspect entered Amalgamated Bank, located at 69-73 Grand Ave. in Maspeth, grabbed a 33-year-old female employee and placed an unknown object to her back, pretending it was a gun. The suspect then brought the employee to a nearby teller and instructed her to inform the teller to give him cash. The suspect then fled the location with an undetermined amount of cash. There were no injuries. The suspect is described as being a white man, 30 years old, 6-feet tall with a thin build. He was last seen wearing a dark hooded jacket with dark jeans and white sneakers. Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call Crime Stoppers at (800) 577-TIPS (8477). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers Web site at nypdcrimestoppers.com or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then entering TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.

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The NYPD is seeking the public’s assistance in locating this suspect wanted in connection with a bank robbery in Maspeth.

YOU DON'T HAVE TO REVEAL YOUR IDENTITY TO HELP SOLVE A CRIME.

Feb. 25 - March 3, 2011 PRESS of Southeast Queens Page 9

•Earnings grow TAX-DEFERRED

TAX TIP:


pix

Southeast Queens Events Edited By Harley Benson

Happy New Year! Hundreds of people lined the streets of Flushing to celebrate the Year of the Rabbit at the largest Lunar New Year celebration in New York City, outside of Chinatown.

Senior Award Senator Malcolm A. Smith presented David Bluford with a proclamation at the Alpha Phi Alpha Senior Center Award Ceremony on Saturday. Bluford was awarded for the many years he spent educating children throughout New York City and advocating for people in his community.

Page 10 PRESS of Southeast Queens Feb. 25 - March 3, 2011

Photos by Ira Cohen


A&E

QC, Town Hall Unite In China Show

East meets West in a group show of art professor at Queens College, Culture 10 American ceramists inspired by the Blending showcases 10 U.S. artists who artisanal techniques and traditions of are heavily influenced by Chinese ceramChina, the birthplace of porcelain; a co- ics. The exhibition is being presented in presentation of Queens College and conjunction with Queens College's Year of China - the first in an Flushing Town Hall. annual series of events Since clay was first dedicated to the art, fired in ancient China, history and contribuceramic objects have tions of a single counbeen traded and refined throughout the world. The exhibit is part of the Year of try. Porcelain, for ex"Culture Blending in Ce- China, sponsored by Queens Colramic Arts: Contempo- lege. ample, is so closely linked to China that the rary Ceramic Artwork," on display at the Flushing Council on Cul- nation's name, lower-cased, is a synonym ture and the Arts, brings the global con- for dishes and other tableware. Outstanding examples of these items have been versation into the 21st century. Curated by ceramist Sin-ying Ho, an coveted in every era. Sixth-century mer-

Restaurant Review

'My Beloved' Italian

CARA MIA 220-20 Hillside Ave., Queens Village (718) 740-9118 caramiarestaurant.com CUISINE: Italian HOURS: 11 am-10 pm Tue-Fri; noon-10 pm Sat; 1-9 pm Sun PARKING: Lot in back CREDIT CARDS: All Major

viewpoints, aesthetics, and technical research. This exhibition is also supported by Global Education at Queens College, the Art Department of Queens College, Flushing Town Hall, the New York State Council on the Arts, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, the Dominick and Rose Ciampa Family Foundation and Tai Pan Bakery Inc. For more information about the Year of China, visit qc.cuny.edu The gallery is open Saturdays and Sundays, noon to 5 p.m. For more information, call (718) 463-7700, Ext. 222.

Food Product Exhibit At LIC’s Homefront

The Homefront Gallery is holding an exhibition by Hidemi Takagi. Known for her bright and saturated images of immigrant food products collected from different boroughs in New York City, Takagi transforms the gallery space into an absorbing environment of curious consumer items from home and abroad. Combining framed photographs of food packages with the actual products, her installation presents us with the cultural images and objects of consumption. For this exhibition, Takagi's photographs and collected items are displayed on the walls and on shelves thus altering our everyday perception of these food products. An ice cream cart and newsstand featuring products will recreate the context of a store. Takagi's artistic practice is formulated as part of a larger project called "Blender," which draws upon the abundance and diversity of New York City culture. The artist writes of her work: "The packaging of these products is a form of art that tells stories and helps remind people that their culture is alive." For viewers, the outmoded look of these food packages evokes nostalgia and brand recognition. Using the language of advertising, Takagi articulates the relationship between photography, symbol and memory. Born in Kyoto, Japan and currently living in New York City, Takagi has exhibited both nationally and internationally for several years. Recent exhibitions

have been at: The Bronx Museum (Bronx), The Dollinger Art Project (Tel Aviv, Israel), The Fleare Gallery, (London, UK), Longwood Art gallery (Bronx), BAC gallery at Brooklyn Arts Council (Brooklyn), Chambers Fine Art (NYC), Dumbo Arts Center (Brooklyn), White Columns (NYC). Takagi participated in the AIM program at The Bronx Museum of the Arts in 2003 and Lower Manhattan Cultural Council's Swing Space in 2010. Her work has been reviewed in Time Out Tel Aviv, Time Out New York, The NY Times and Village Voice. The "Blender" project was published in NYFA Current, the New York Foundation for the Arts online publication of artists' writings and projects. The Homefront Gallery aims to bring together art and design objects that address the concept of the "homefront." There is a focus on the home as a place where we design our daily lives. The Homefront Gallery is a space for artists who, in one way or another, find themselves living and working on the "homefront." Come visit and find something to take away with you-a work of art, an experience, an encounter with an artist, a book or gift. For more information contact Crystal Kui at homefrontgallery@gmail.com The Homefront Gallery is located at 26-23 Jackson Ave., Long Island City. It is open Thursday through Sunday from noon to 6 p.m. and by appointment. Call (347) 827-0553 for more information.

One of Hidemi Takagi’s pieces from “Blender.”

Feb. 25 - March 3, 2011 PRESS of Southeast Queens Page 11

It is only fitting that leading up to Valentine's Day, we were tempted to go to a place named Cara Mia, which translates to "My Beloved." Truth be told, this is one of our more regular dining spots in Queens - hailing from the days when Nonna would make the meatballs by hand well into her 90s, to the way that this Hillside Avenue mainstay has offered stellar cuisine throughout the years. It's always great to come back. We entered on a bitterly cold Saturday night, hopeful to not wait too long without a reservation. Showing up shortly after 7 p.m. we barely had a wait, though we were told 15-20 minutes. As we were seated, our server listed through the specials, which included veal cannelloni and a handful of other tempting dishes. We chose to stick with the menu, and dove in to our order with great haste - with a 10-year-old in tow, we needed to get food on the table immediately. Again, we didn't have long to wait. After we got our drinks but before our appetizers arrived, we were delivered a basket with pieces of flatbread and a steaming small loaf of crusty Italian bread. Sitting and snacking, we chatted as the f lurry of diners and servers hustled around us. And then the appetizers arrived - Mozzarella Sticks for the kids, a Caesar Salad for the Mrs. and a big bowl of Pasta e Fagioli for me. The sticks were gooey and served with Cara Mia's knockout marinara, the salad was very traditional - with a salty anchovy bite that my wife loved (and we all shared) - and the soup was just the right thing to help warm me up on a chilly evening. The beans were tender, the

broth rich with tomato flavor and the nuttiness of the prosciutto and sweetness of the onion added layers of flavor that forbade me from putting my spoon down. As we paused brief ly between courses, our server, with her booming voice, came out and called upon the whole restaurant to wish our dining neighbor Gina a happy birthday, getting the whole place to join in song. That's typical of this place - they really make you feel like you're part of the family. Our attention quickly turned to our entrees, which is where my daughter differs from many of her 10-year-old contemporaries. Though kids' meals are on the menu, my 10-year-old dug into the Veal Cara Mia - thin slices of tender meat sautéed and layered with eggplant in a Marsala wine sauce with mushrooms and topped with mozzarella cheese. The sweetness of the wine, the earthiness of the eggplant and mushrooms and the richness of the veal combined for a killer combination worthy of donning the restaurant's name. My wife, who likely imagined a smaller dish, had ordered the Eggplant Parmesan and received what appeared to be the perfectly prepared contents of an entire eggplant - breaded, sautéed, covered in mozzarella and served with a fresh tomato sauce. For me, I'm a bit of a traditionalist, so I went with the classic Veal Parmesan, served in a large, wide ramekin fresh from the oven, smothered in cheese and just as tender as the Veal Cara Mia. Though my wife and daughter were content to take home huge portions of their meals, I could not face the idea of packing up a single morsel of this delicious dish, and it was good to the last bite. From classic entrees to creative concoctions, Cara Mia's menu is a delight; add to that the ambiance of the location and the friendly staff, and you've got a great spot for a romantic night out, a family meal or just some place great to eat when you don't feel like cooking. — Brian M. Rafferty

chants carried ceramic pieces by camel across the Silk Road, linking Central and Eastern Asia. Ceramic objects found in shipwrecks and museum collections attest to the lively 18th-century trade between China and Europe. Today, computer technology, advanced communications and modern transportation enable artists to incorporate the rich history of Chinese ceramics into their works. The participants in Culture Blending embrace the cross-fertilization in ceramic arts; all of the artists in this show explore new ways to express ideas from their diverse backgrounds, social and political


Faith

Westminster’s Black History Service

BY SASHA AUSTRIE

The Westminster Presbyterian Church in Cedar Manor is closing out Black History Month with a look back on the footpaths of yesteryear. The church will host a worship service and special presentation at 11 a.m. Sunday, Feb. 27, at 159-11 115th Rd. The service and presentation will be held in the lower auditorium with refreshments to follow.

The exhibition will recap the trail from slavery in the American South to freedom in the North and into Canada. “We have much to remember, celebrate and pass on to our children,” wrote Rochelle Cummings, Westminster’s secretary. “It’s a gathering and presentation, you, your family and friends don’t want to miss.” Westminster has long been a foothold and trailblazer in the community. Beginning in 1928, a group of blacks fought to

Word

“When men destroy their old gods they will find new ones to take their place.” – Pearl S. Buck

have a Presbyterian church in southern Jamaica. After a 17-year odyssey, a meeting in the home of Mattie McClester led to a proposal requesting the establishment of the church. The plan was sent to the Brooklyn-Nassau Presbytery in February 1945. On Easter Sunday, those who would later be ordained as elected officers of the church received a response. “When it first started out, it was a neighborhood church,” Cummings said. “It promoted self-determination.” Members kept services in McClester’s funeral home from February to July 1945. According to Westminster’s history, the Presbytery arranged for the congregation to worship at the all-white Cedar Manor Presbyterian Church. Though there was resistance by the existing congregation, the Presbytery mandated that the churches converge in March 1947 and became the Westminster Presbyterian

Church in Cedar Manor. In its first nine years, the church’s congregation had grown from 30 to 400. A former minister, the Rev. Gilbert Lincoln, stated that Westminster was “unafraid of challenges and responsibilities” and in the aftermath of Sept. 11, the church offered solace. The church provided weekly services for those grieving and the following month held a spiritual overnight retreat. Also, in November 2001, the church hosted its first Spiritual Prayer Breakfast and Worship Service, which has become an annual event. Cummings first came to the church in 1994. Since she became a member the dynamics of the church has changed. “It is mostly an elderly population,” she said. “I love these folks.” Reach Reporter Sasha Austrie at saustrie@queenspress.com, or (718) 3577400, Ext. 123.

Notebook Virtual Enterprise

Computer Applications & Entrepreneurship H.S. BY BOB HARRIS

Page 12 PRESS of Southeast Queens Feb. 25 - March 3, 2011

The Virtual Enterprise Class in the Business, Computer Applications & Entrepreneurship H.S. in the Campus Magnet Complex, Cambria Heights, is a simulated business designed to give the students real-world entrepreneurial skills. The students run their own simulated business called, “Office Supplies Enterprise, Inc.” Under the guidance of business teacher Morgan Thomas Nadine, the students are involved in every aspect of running their virtual business, from human resources, accounting and production development to production, distribution, marketing and sales. In addition, these student entrepreneurs are part of a global e-commerce network of 4,000 student-run enterprises through which they

buy and sell make-believe goods and services via the regular mail, e-mail or fax. The Virtual Enterprise Classroom is set up like a business office with the students each performing an aspect of the business. To develop business skills and motivate the students to become active, there is an advertising competition, a business plan competition, product catalogue competition, web page design and trade fairs where the students prepare a booth where they sell their products. This year, Virtual Enterprises International will have a trade fair in California in March and the usual one in the 69th Regiment Armory, Manhattan, in April. The Business H.S. students have participated in the AD Council Advertising Contest and have won it for the second year in a row. A team, accompanied by Thomas, went to Manhattan weekly to

The Virtual Enterprise Class students of the Business, Computer Applications & Entrepreneurship H.S. the DRAFTFCB Healthcare Advertising Firm to devise an ad that would show how sending photos over the Internet can damage one’s reputation.

The students have to punch in and out at a time clock daily and receive a simulated W2 Form prepared by the appropriate department. It is simulated reality.


Profile

Rosedale's Little League Turns 56 children ages 5 to 17. The league accepts children from Rosedale, Laurelton, Sit with Bernie Brown just a few mo- Cambria Heights, Springfield Gardens ments and you will understand her pride and parts of Far Rockaway. The season and passion for the Rosedale Little lasts from March to June. Parents of chilLeague. She will tell you that any acco- dren interested in playing in the league lade one can possibly heap on the orga- should call (917) 225-4716 to register. Brown stresses that all her coaches nization "is well deserving." "This league is so huge to me," she and people who come in contact with the children undergo said. "It is one of the biggest background checks. things I've done in my life." Brown, who claims to The league will celebrate its be the only female presi56th season this year. Its field dent of a little league oron 147th Avenue was merely ganization, took the reins an empty lot when a few seven years ago. She does people lent a hand to clean it not remember her exact up. Brown said the new stewfeelings the moment she ards of the park, which would was asked to lead the oreventually be named Dottie D' ganization; Brown could Ambroi Memorial Field, not say if she hesitated, battled the bureaucracy. whether or not she "[Former Councilman] Bernie Brown thought she would be acArchie Spigner spearheaded cepted in the male-domithe movement to get the field cleaned," she said. Since 1955, the nated stadium. She remembers accepting Rosedale Little League has cared for its the position and the growing pains that came with the unknown. swath of Brookville Park. "They all knew what I did in this And with another season looming, the Rosedale Little League is celebrating league," she said. "I knew how to manits anniversary by asking parents to regis- age, but I didn't know baseball." She said people like Vice President ter their children to play America's pastime. The league is comprised of 18 Hugh Wilson helped with the growing teams, two girls' softball teams and 16 pains. Before heading the league, she boys' teams. The league accommodates served as a coach for the girls' softball BY SASHA AUSTRIE

One of the Rosedale Little League's teams, the Monarchs. team, a manager and the corresponding and financial secretaries. Brown said though the people in the Rosedale Little League respected her leadership, other managers and presidents are falling in line. "Because I'm not going anywhere, you might as well get use to Bernie Brown," she said. Brown contends that the Rosedale Little League teaches more than a game. Children learn teamwork, charity and giving back to their community. The league has hosted a toy drive for the last few years. Last year, 250 children received toys, with the majority going to the Saratoga Inn homeless shelter. This holi-

day season, Brown is hoping to host a toy, coat and food drive. The league also hosted a Halloween function in conjunction with Andrea Sanders, wife of Councilman James Sanders (D-Laurelton.) Brown's current goal is to find an indoor facility, which would allow the league members to practice and keep improving on their skills during the winter months. She is also looking for vendors to sponsor teams within the league. "This is just not baseball or softball," she said. "I'm trying to grow this community:" Reach Reporter Sasha Austrie at saustrie@queenspress.com, or (718) 3577400, Ext. 123.

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Feb. 25 - March 3, 2011 PRESS of Southeast Queens Page 13


Borough Beat

EDC Willets Pt. Plan Is Rife With Support BY JOSEPH OROVIC

Page 14 PRESS of Southeast Queens Feb. 25 - March 3, 2011

As the redevelopment of Willets Point marches onward, opponents of the plan have often successfully kept themselves in the media spotlight, staging press conferences and reacting to the City’s every move. They have garnered a consistent trail of newspaper ink and TV time in the process. But less often heard are the plan’s supporters, who include elected officials and local business leaders. Each harbors specific reasons for supporting Iron Triangle’s redevelopment, which looks to transform the 62-acre patch of industrial business and junk yards into a mix of housing, commerce and community space. “When this project is complete, it will create a brand new neighborhood with thousands of jobs, affordable housing options, and a vibrant retail sector, and it will remediate decades of environmental damage,” said New York City Economic Development Corp. spokeswoman Julie Wood. Both state legislators representing Willets Point have supported the project from the onset, with State Sen. Toby Stavisky (D-Flushing) calling the project a win for the community on multiple levels. “I’m a yea-sayer,” said Stavisky. “When I look at the derelict, debris-ridden site, I cringe.”

The area is in dire need of an economic rejuvenation, one that takes it away from its current state, according to Stavisky. “[The redevelopment] will improve the area but also make it a destination, not an area where you speed up on the highway so you don’t have to look at it,” she added. The EDC has said it owns more than 80 percent of the land in Willets Point through formal acquisitions mixed, in some cases, with helping businesses move. The project took its next step towards reality when the EDC announced the beginning of Phase 1, which would focus on a 20.2acre area. The agency owns 90 percent of that property, with nine landowners refusing to sell. Opponents grew more vocal at the beginning of the month, when the EDC began formal proceedings that would eventually lead to the acquisition of the remaining land in Phase 1 through the use of eminent domain. The agency has maintained it will keep negotiations open and says the landowners will get fair market value for their property, should it be obtained through eminent domain. “As we seek to reach agreements with the nine remaining businesses, we will also begin the legal process that gives us the option to condemn these properties if needed, so that we can continue to move

forward,” Wood said. The agency will explore relocation with Phase 1 businesses by the end of 2011, though actual relocation will not happen until half a year later. All tenants outside of the Phase 1 area have a three-year buffer to continue business as usual. Opponents have taken the EDC to task for past promises made by the City to keep eminent domain off the table until exit ramps off the Van Wyck Expressway were approved by the state’s Dept. of Transportation. The EDC maintains its new phased-in approach eliminates the necessity for the ramps’ approval, adding it anticipates their revised plan’s approval shortly. The first part of the redevelopment will include affordable housing, a hotel, infrastructure improvements, retail and two acres of open space. “That location is ripe for development,” said Seth Bornstein, president of the Queens Economic Development Corp, adding growth comes at a cost. “For the borough and city, change is difficult, but the city doesn’t grow if it doesn’t change,” he said. “Overall, this will bring more opportunity for more people.” The project’s opposition befuddles the Queens Chamber of Commerce’s Executive Vice President Jack Friedman, who

A vision for the future of Willets Point has widespread support, though the plan’s detractors are often considerably more vocal. sees nothing but benefits from the plan’s completion. “Whoever is opposed to this project, God bless them, but this area is not helping anyone,” he said. The plan’s convention center remains the lynchpin of the Chamber’s support, Friedman said, but the overall economic boon redevelopment will bring sustains the group’s position. “Right now, the current situation in Willets Point is not helping anybody,” he said. The EDC plans to release a Request for Proposals for Phase 1’s developer in April. Reach Deputy Reporter Joseph Orovic at jorovic@queenstribune.com, or (718) 3577400, Ext. 127.


What’s Up SATURDAY, FEB. 26 Youth & Tennis The Youth and Tennis group meets every Saturday morning at Roy Wilkins Park Saturday. To learn more, call Bill Briggs at (718) 658-6728.

JIC Orientation Join us for an interactive orientation to learn about our services: career resources including workshops; assistance with your job searching; our resources: books, newspapers, pathfinders, bookmarks and brochures; resume/cover letter reviews and Queens Workforce 1 information. This free event will be held at the Queensborough Public Library’s Central Branch, 89-11 Merrick Blvd., at 11 a.m.

Diva on a Dime Workshop The Daughters of Isis Foundation is pleased to present the Bossed Out Diva on a Dime Workshop. This workshop is geared towards young women in helping each to learn how to appreciate and celebrate her own unique beauty and self-determination. For additional information, visit thedaughtersofisisfoundation.org, or contact Simone Williams at (347) 731-1721 or isis1995@netzero.com. This free event will be held at the Young Queens Loft, 148-14 Liberty Ave., from noon to 2 p.m.

Meta and The Cornerstones The Jamaica Performing Arts Center is pleased to present New Reggae Soul Meta and The Cornerstones. Meta and The Cornerstones blend Afropop, hiphop, rock, and soul with a mixture of French, English, Wolof, and Fulani vocals, creating a unique reggae and soul sound. With powerful lyrics and joyful melodies, they create exciting music that transcends borders and language barriers. For additional information, visit jamaicaperformingartscenter.org or call the box office at (718) 618-6170 or info@jamaicaperformingartscenter.org. This event will be held at the Jamaica Performing Arts Center, 153-10 Jamaica Ave. at 8 p.m. General admission costs $22.

SUNDAY, FEB. 27 Don’t Shoot New York

MONDAY, FEB. 28 Adult Chess Club Practice your chess skills weekly, on Monday and Thursday evenings. The event is held at 6 p.m. every Monday at Queens Village Library, 94-11 217 St., (718) 776-6800.

Search the Internet to Find a Job The Job Information Center in collabo-

Calling all older adults: Join our galaxy of STARs to perform theatrical works at the library with a great group of people while brightening your life. Rehearsals are held at 10:30 a.m. Fridays at Queens Village Library, 94-11 217th St., (718) 776-6800.

Neighborhood Housing Services Macroscopia The continual intrigue of creative improvisation is the nature of the combination of instruments which the musicians choose. In Macroscopia, the quartet exists without a drummer. Tom Zlabinger plays bass; Daniel Carter, the trumpet and reeds; Ken Silverman, the guitar, oud and hand percussion, and Claire DeBrunner, the bassoon. When: Monday, Feb. 28 - 7:00 pm This free event will be held at the York College Illinois Jacquet Performance Space at the Chapel of the Three Sisters, 94-15 159th St. at 7 p.m.

TUESDAY, MARCH 1 Job Club Every Tuesday, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., the Jamaica Neighborhood Center offers a free service to assist people from Southeast Queens with job-readiness skill sets in writing a professional resume and cover letter; interviewing practices and techniques; applying on-line procedures; elevator pitch and Microsoft Suite 2007. For additional information, contact Lenin Gross, Job Coach, at (718) 739-2060, Ext. 18 or lgrossjnc@yahoo.com. This free event will be held at the Jamaica Neighborhood Center - 161-06 89th Ave.

Camera Club The Southeast Queens Camera Club welcomes photographers, beginners to advanced. Meetings are held the second, third and fourth Tuesday every month at 7:30 p.m. at Roy Wilkins Family Life Center, 177-01 Baisley Blvd.

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 2 Lunch In Church Join us for lunch and get refueled, renewed and refilled. This free event is held every Wednesday at noon at the First Presbyterian Church in Jamaica, 89-60 164th St. For more information, call (718) 5264775, Ext. 10. Come just as you are.

THURSDAY, March 3 Adult Chess Club Practice your chess skills weekly, on Monday and Thursday evenings. The event is held at 6 p.m. every Thursday at Queens Village Library, 94-11 217th St., (718) 776-6800.

Discover Your Career Potential Take the Career Exploration Inventory, a self-scored, easy-to-use survey guide to choosing a career based on your interests and experiences. This free event will be held at the Queensborough Public Library’s Central Branch, 89-11 Merrick Blvd., at 2 p.m.

FRIDAY, MARCH 4 Senior Theatre Acting Repertory

Neighborhood Housing Services of Jamaica (NHSJ) invites you to attend their Open House, scheduled for Friday, March 4. The Open House will be an opportunity to stop by the office to meet the staff and hear about all of the programs that they have to offer. For additional information, visit www.nhsj.org or contact Derek Johnson at (718) 517-6655. This free event will be held at Neighborhood Housing Services Jamaica, 89-70 162nd St., from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

ONGOING CPR Training The FDNY Mobile CPR Training Unit will hold regularly scheduled free CPR classes in all five boroughs. The first Tuesday through the fourth Tuesday and the fourth Thursday of every month there will be Borough CPR training sessions in Manhattan, Brooklyn, the Bronx, Staten Island and Queens. Training is free to anyone over the age of 14. The goal of this program is increase the number of people in New York City trained in bystander CPR Each class lasts 1 hour and participants in the class learn basic CPR skills from a member of the FDNY Emergency Medical Service. Volunteers for the class follow along using the CPR Anytime Personal Learning Kit, which features an instructional DVD and an inflatable mannequin. All participants are able take home the kit at the end of class and asked to pledge to use the kit to show five of their family members and friends how to perform CPR. This class teaches basic CPR technique and is not a certification course. In Queens, the classes will be held the fourth Thursday of every month at EMS Station 54, 222-15 Merrick Blvd. In addition, please visit www.nyc.gov/cprtogo for New York Sports Club locations offering free CPR classes starting in January. Please visit www.fdnyfoundation.org or call (718) 999-2413 for more information.

Group Sessions Clergy United for Community Empowerment, Inc. Group Sessions are located at 89-31 161st St., 10th Floor, Jamaica, for the community on various topics such as Domestic Violence, Mental Health, Substance Abuse intervention, Decision Making, Condom Use, High Risk Behaviors leading to HIV, and self – esteem awareness. All group sessions offer light snacks and beverages. Group sessions are open to the public. Round-Trip Metro Card reimbursement is available at the end of each completed session. For further information call (718) 297-0720. All services are free. Please call for next group date.

Infant Mortality Clergy United for Community Empowerment’s Infant Mortality Reduc-

tion Initiative program provides the following services free of charge: case management services, parent skills building, crib care, breast feeding education, health education, nutritional information/education, referral for HIV testing, confidential one-on-one counseling, workshops, and women support groups. IMRI provides referrals for Food stamps, GED, GYN, Emergency Baby Formula (qualifications required) and more. Call (718) 297-0720. Located at 89-31 161 St., 10th floor, Jamaica. Services are available Tue.-Thurs. 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

HIV Awareness Clergy United for Community Empowerment provides intervention and curriculum-based prevention education sessions on HIV/AIDS, to reduce risk behaviors that lead to HIV transmission. Services are located at 89-31 161st St., Jamaica. Call (718) 297-0720 ask about our presentation to adolescents and men/women of color. Services are available Tue.-Thurs., 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Laurelton Flea Market A flea market has opened at 221-02 Merrick Blvd. On sale are a wide range of items, including household items, jewelry and clothing. The market is open every Thursday through Sunday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

CPR Class Learn to protect yourself and others at Heron Care with a CPR class that includes a certification from the American Heart Association. Please call (718) 291-8788 for more details. Heron is located at 16830 89th Ave., Jamaica.

PAL Volunteers The Police Athletic League (PAL) is looking for volunteers to continue its mission of serving New York City’s young people by donating their time and talents to help serve Queens youngsters at PAL’s Redfern Cornerstone and Far Rockaway Beacon in Arverne-Far Rockaway, PAL’s Edward Byrne Center in South Jamaica and PS 214 in Flushing. PAL Centers in Queens offer a wide range of opportunities for volunteers of all talents. PAL’s Redfern Cornerstone and Far Rockaway Beacon are looking for people to participate in a center clean-up day. Volunteers are needed to tutor and mentor young people during the After School Program’s daily homework help sessions. In addition, individuals can also donate their time assisting the many special events held at PAL’s Centers throughout the year. PAL is also seeking professionals to give career advice and talk about their own careers to young people, as well as guest speakers who can share information on a specific hobby of interest to the youngsters. To become a volunteer with the Police Athletic League or to learn more about volunteer opportunities, please visit palnyc.org. Volunteers will go through an application process that includes an interview, screening and an orientation. For more information, please contact PAL’s Volunteer Coordinator, Alexandria Sumpter-Delves, at (212) 477-9450, Ext. 390 or volunteer@palnyc.org.

Feb. 25 - March 3, 2011 PRESS of Southeast Queens Page 15

Senator Malcolm A. Smith is pleased to present Don’t Shoot New York: A March & Rally. Don’t Shoot New York will take place to promote the end of senseless acts of gun violence. It will start at the United Nations(1st Avenue at 42nd Street) Participants will march from United Nations Plaza to Times Square for a rally. For additional information, contact Tai White at (718) 528-4290 or twhite@nysenate.gov. This free event will be held at the United Nations, 1st Avenue at 42nd Street, from 3-4:30 p.m.

ration with New York Cares will help you find the most useful websites when job hunting. You must have basic computer skills. Seating limited; pre-registration required. This free event will be held at the Queensborough Public Library’s Central Branch, 89-11 Merrick Blvd., at 6:30 p.m.


People Airmen who complete basic training earn four credits toward an associate in applied science degree through the Community College of the Air Force. She is the daughter of Idilia Colon of Arverne. Colon graduated in 2004 from Beach Channel High School, Rockaway Park, and received an associate degree in 2007 from Nassac Community College, Garden City.

Adrienne Gordon, a resident of Springfield Gardens, a student at Martin Van Buren High School, has been admitted to Concordia University, St. Paul for the fall 2011 semester. Gordon was awarded the University scholarship. This achievement provides a total of $8,000 in funds.

Alissa D. Anderson Air Force Reserve Airman Alissa D. Anderson graduated from basic military training at Lackland Air Force Base, San Antonio, Texas. The airman completed an intensive, eight-week program that included training in military discipline and studies, Air Force core values, physical fitness, and basic warfare principles and skills. Airmen who complete basic training earn four credits toward an associate in applied science degree through the Community College of the Air Force. She is the daughter of Darlene Anderson of Orange, N.J., and granddaughter of Doreen Osborne of Springfield Gardens. Anderson graduated in 2003 from Campus Magnet High School.

Army Pvt. Godspower O. Okoroh has graduated from basic combat training at Fort Jackson, Columbia, S.C. During the nine weeks of training, the soldier studied the Army mission, history, tradition and core values, physical fitness, and received instruction and practice in basic combat skills, military weapons, chemical warfare and bayonet training, drill and ceremony, marching, rifle marksmanship, armed and unarmed combat, map reading, field tactics, military courtesy, military justice system, basic first aid, foot marches, and field training exercises. He is the stepson of Enoh Obarakpor and son of Lucky Okoroh of Far Rockaway. Air Force Reserve Airman Duvina R. Jones graduated from basic military training at Lackland Air Force Base, San Antonio, Texas. The airman completed an intensive, eight-week program that included training in military discipline and studies, Air Force core values, physical fitness, and basic warfare principles and skills. Airmen who complete basic training earn four credits toward an associate in

Duvina R. Jones applied science degree through the Community College of the Air Force. She is the daughter of Marjorie M. Moncrieffe of Rosedale, and sister of Keisha Jones of Laurelton. Jones graduated in 2008 from Aviation High School, Long Island City.

The following local students earned honors for the fall semester at Skidmore College: Karen Abramowitz, Class of 2013, the daughter of Arne Abramowitz and Deborah Bernstein of Jamaica; and Stefani Mladenova, Class of 2014, the daughter of Radostin and Roumiana Mladenova of Sunnyside. Highest honors are awarded for a quality point ratio of 3.670 or more from a possible 4.0. Honors are awarded for a grade point ratio of 3.4 to 3.669.

Tell The PRESS Send notices of graduation, awards, anniversaries, engagements and honors to: PRESS of Southeast Queens 150-50 14th Rd. Whittestone, NY 111357 All announcements will be considered for publication without fee.

Air Force Airman 1st Class Linda G. Colon graduated from basic military training at Lackland Air Force Base, San Antonio, Texas. The airman completed an intensive, eight-week program that included training in military discipline and studies, Air Force core values, physical fitness, and basic warfare principles and skills.

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Queens Today SECTION EDITOR: REGINA VOGEL

Send typed announcements for your club or organization’s events at least TWO weeks in advance to “Queens Today” Editor, Queens Tribune, 174-15 Horace Harding Expressway, Fresh Meadows, NY 11365. Send faxes to 357-9417, c/o Regina. IF YOUR ORGANIZATION MEETS ON A REGULAR BASIS, SEND ALL DATES FOR THE ENTIRE YEAR.

TALKS REVITALIZE QUEENS Tuesday, March 1 How to Revitalize queens in This Time of Economic Turmoil at 1:30 at the Kew Gardens Hills library. HUMAN DEV. IN CHINA Thursday, March 3 Human Development in China at the Rosenthal Library, room 230 at 7 at Queens College. Free. SELF ESTEEM Thursday, March 3 Build Your Self Esteem at 6 at the Corona library. BOOK TALK Thursday, March 3 at the East Elmhurst library at 6. MASPETH TALK Thursday, March 3 “Corrections” will be discussed at the Maspeth library at 6. FLUSHING BOOK Friday, March 4 “The Pa i n te d Ve i l ” w i l l b e d i s cussed at the Flushing library at 1. RELIGIOUS SITES Sunday, March 6 History of Religious Sites in Flushing lecture 2:30-4:30 at the Queens Historical Societ y. $8, $5 members. 939-0647.

THEATER

PHAT LITERATURE Saturday, February 26 at the Langston Hughes library at 10. DANCE THEATER Saturday, February 26 Charles Moore Dance Theater: Across the African Diaspora at 2 at the Flushing library. CHESS CLUB Saturdays at the Flushing library at 2. TEEN TUTORING Saturdays, February 26, March 6 at the Bayside library at 10. TEEN TUTORING Monday, February 28 at the Bayside library at 3:30. TEEN CHESS CLUB Monday, February 28 at the Bayside library at 6. KNIT & CROCHET Mondays at the Douglaston/ Little Neck library at 4. BOOK BUDDIES Tuesday, March 1 at the Hillcrest library at 3:30. DUNGEONS & DRAGONS Tu e s d a y, M a r c h 1 a t t h e Baisley Park library. Register. LAPTOPS Tu e s d a y, We d n e s d ay a n d Thursday at the Hollis library at 4. GUITAR LESSONS Tuesday, March 1 at t he Woodhaven librar y. Register. CHESS Wednesdays at 3:30 at the Queens Village library. CHESS & CHECKERS Wednesday, March 2 at the Woodside library at 3. CROCHET Wednesday, March 2 at the Astoria library at 4. TEEN GAMES Wednesday, March 2 at the Central library at 4. NEWSPAPER POETRY Wednesday, March 2 Newspaper Blackout Poetry at 4 at the Steinway library. DRAMA POSSE Thursday, March 3 at the Hillcrest library at 3. COMIC BOOK Thursday and Friday, March 3, 4 create a comic book at 3 at the Far Rockaway library. SAT STRATEGY Thursday, March 3 ST free strategy session with the Princeton Review at the A r ve r n e l i b r a r y. 8 0 0 - 2 7 3 8439 to register. GIRL SCOUTS Thursday, March 3 at the Queens Village library at 4. YOGA FOR YOUTH Thursday, March 3 at the Ridgewood library. Register. GAME DAY Friday, March 4 at the Bay Terrace library at 2:30. GAME PLAYERS Fridays at the Hillcrest library at 2. GAME CHALLENGE Friday, March 4 at the East Elmhurst library at 3. CHESS CLUB Friday, March 4 at the Auburndale library at 3:30. ARTS & CRAFTS Friday, March 4 at the Briarwood library at 4. WII SPORTS Friday, March 4 at the Lefrak Cit y library at 4:30. HAPPY HOUR Friday, March 4 at the Flushing library at 3.

INTERPRET Friday, March 4 teen-created videos about the Noguchi Museum at the Museum. 204-7088. FUTURE WRITERS Saturday, March 5 book club at the LIC library at 11.

SINGLES SINGLES SOCIAL & DANCE Sundays, February 27, singles social and dance from 2-6. $10. Over 45. Rego Park Jewish Center, 97-30 Q u een s B l v d . , R eg o P a r k . 459-1000.

SENIORS AARP CHORUS Like to sing? The AARP Queens Chorus holds practice rehearsals for performances at nursing homes, rehab and senior centers. 523-1330. FREE LUNCH Saturdays, February 26, March 26 at Church of the Resurrection in Kew Gardens. 847-2649 reservations. TAI CHI CLASSES Mondays at 9 at the Pomonok Senior Center, 6709 Kissena Blvd, Flushing. 591-3377. AARP 1405 Monday, February 28 at 1 at the Bowne Street Communit y Church, 143-11 Roosevelt Avenue., Flushing. CLEARVIEW Monday, February 28 Music Appreciation at 12:45. Clearview Senior Center, 208-11 26 th Avenue, Bayside. 224-7888. CAREGIVERS Ever y Tuesday Caregivers Support group at 3:30-4:30 at the Selfhelp Clearview Senior Center, 208-11 26 th Avenue, Bayside. 631-1886. AARP 3654 Tuesdays, March 1, April 5, May 3 AARP chapter 3654 meets in Bayside. 423-4237. AARP TAX HELP Tuesday, March 1 at t he Bayside library at 1 and at the Hollis library at 1.Wednesday, March 2 at the Broad Channel library at 1 and the Fresh Meadows library at 1. HORIZONS Thursday, March 3 see Meetings. DANCE LESSONS Fridays, March 4, April 1, May 6 free dance lessons – tango, pasodoble, cha cha, etc. – from 1-2:30 at the Pomonok Senior Center. 591-3377. STARS Friday, March 4 at 10:30 at the Queens Village library. Senior Theater Acting Repertory meets. STAY WELL Wednesdays at 10:15 at the East Elmhurst library for exercise and other health related programs. WOMANSPACE Wednesdays Womanspace, group devoted to issues concerning women, meets 1-3 at the Great Neck Senior Center, 80 Grace Avenue.

QUEENS LIBRARIES Many branches of the Queensborough Library offer toddler and pre-school programs. Contact your local branch for dates. KIDS’ THEATER Through Saturday, April 9 LaMicro Children’s Theater Workshop at the Sunnyside library. PHAT LITERATURE Saturday, February 26 at the Langston Hughes library starting at 10. TEEN TUTORING Saturdays, February 26, March 5 at the Bayside library at 10. YOUNG CHEFS Saturday, February 26 at Alley Pond Environmental Center. 229-4000 to register. MATH HELP Saturdays at the Flushing library at 10. SCIENCE LAB Saturdays, February 26, March 5 at the Central library at 11. CHESS CLUB Saturdays at the Flushing library at 2. S TORY TIMES Saturdays at 11 and Tuesdays at 10:30 weekly story times at 7 at Barnes & Noble, 1 7 6 - 6 0 Un i o n Tu r n p i k e , Fresh Meadows. MAD SCIENTISTS Sunday, February 27 at Alley Pond Environmental Center. 229-4000 to register. KNIT & CROCHET Mondays at 4 at the Douglaston/Little Neck lib ra r y. B r i n g n e e d l e s a n d yarn. HOMEWORK HELP Weekdays at the Lefrak Cit y library at 3. Call 592-7677 to confirm. TEEN TUTORING Monday, February 28 at the Bayside library at 3:30. PJ STORY TIME Monday, February 28 at the Pomonok library at 7. AFTERSCHOOL TIME Monday, February 28 at the Arverne library for those 7 and over. DR. SEUSS Tuesday, March 1 Dr. Seuss Birthday Celebration story time at 10:30 at Barnes & Noble, 176-60 Union Turnpike, Fresh Meadows. GO GREEN Tuesday, March 1 at the East Elmhurst library at 4. CHESS CLUB Tuesday, March 1 at the LIC library at 4. BOOK BUDDIES Tuesday, March 1 at 3:30 at the Hillcrest library. DUNGEONS & DRAGONS Tuesday, March 1 at t he Baisley Park library. Register. ORIGAMI Tuesday, March 1 at t he Poppenhusen library at 4. Space limited. GUITAR LESSONS Tuesday, March 1 at t he Woodhaven librar y. Register. NUTRITION WORKSHOP Tuesday, March 1 at t he Ridgewood library. Register. BOOST READING CLUB Tuesday, March 1 at t he McGoldrick library at 5.

STORIES & CRAFTS Wednesday, March 2 at the Bay Terrace library at 10:30. TODDLER CRAFT Wednesday, March 2 at the Briarwood library at 10:30. DR. SEUSS DAY Wednesday, March 2 at 10:30 and again at 3 at the Pomonok library. FAMILY STORY TIME Wednesday, March 2 at the Queensboro Hill library at 11. CRAFTS Wednesday, March 2 at the Steinway library at 11. Space limited. CHESS Wednesdays at the Queens Village library at 3:30. COLORING & CRAFT Wednesday, March 2 at the Queensboro Hill library at 11:15. BABY CRAWL Wednesday, March 2 at the Forest Hills library at 1:30. HOMEWORK HELP Wednesday, March 2 at the LIC library at 3. READING CLUB Wednesday, March 2 at the Bay Terrace library at 3:30. TWEEN CROCHETING Wednesday, March 2 at the Bayside library. Register. STORY & CRAFT Wednesday, March 2 at the East Flushing library. Register. CHESS CLUB Wednesday, March 2 at the Poppenhusen library at 4. CHESS CLUB Wednesday, March 2 at the Ridgewood library at 4. MATH ACTIVITY Wednesday, March 2 at the McGoldrick library at 5. HOMEWORK HELP Thursday, March 3 at the LIC library at 3. MIND MATH Thursday, March 3 at the North Hills library. Register. ARTS & CRAFTS Thursday, March 3 at the Auburndale library at 4. GIRL SCOUTS Thursday, March 3 at the Queens Village library at 4. YOGA FOR YOUTH Thursday, March 3 at the Ridgewood library at 4:15. Limited space. DISCOVER SCIENCE Thursday, March 3 at the McGoldrick library at 5. CHESS CLUB Fridays at the Poppenhusen library at 3:30. GAME DAY Fridays at 3:30 at the Queens Village library. GAME PLAYERS CLUB Fridays at the Hillcrest library at 4. GAME TIME Fridays at the Windsor Park library at 4. CHESS CLUB Fridays at the Douglaston/ Little Neck library. Register. S TORY T I M E Friday, March 4 at the Seaside library at 11. PRESCHOOL CRAFTS Friday, March 4 at the Sunnyside library. Register. GAME DAY Friday, March 4 at the Bay Terrace library at 2:30. READ TO ME Friday, March 4 at the Briarwood library at 3.

HOMEWORK HELP Friday, March 4 at the LIC library at 3. ACTIVITY TIME Fridays at the Briarwood library at 3:30. ARTS & CRAFTS Friday, March 4 at the East Flushing library. Register. CRAFTERNOONS Friday, March 4 at the Ridgewood library. Register. GAME DAY Friday, March 4 at the McGoldrick library at 5. S TORY T I M E Saturday, March 5 at the Flushing library at 11. NATURE PHOTOGRAPHY Saturday, March 5 starts a two week workshop for those 6-11 at Alley Pond Environmental Center. 2294000 to register. S TORY T I M E Saturday, March 5 at the Ridgewood library at 11. THEATER WORKSHOP Saturday, March 5 at the Sunnyside library for 10 weeks. Register. ART FOR FAMIIES Saturdays, March 5, April 23 for families with children 5-11 at the Noguchi Museum. 204-7088 to register. FAMILY DANCE Sunday, March 6 Make a Family Dance at the Noguchi Museum. 204-7088.

PARENTS YOGA FOR PARENTS Thursday, March 3 at the Ridgewood library. Register. S TORY T I M E Saturday, March 5 at the Ridgewood library at 11. For kids 5 and under.

EXHIBIT AMER. CIVIL RIGHTS February through April “Bindu Masks from the Imperato Collection.” February through June “QCC Art Gallery: 20 Years of Collecting.” QCC Art Gallery. 6316396. SMALL WORKS Through February 26 at the National Art League, 33-21 Douglaston Parkway. Monday-Thursday and Saturday 14. Free. CULTURAL BLENDING Through March 31 “Culture Blending in Ceramic Arts” at F l u s h i n g To w n H a l l . 4 6 3 7700, ext. 222 ISAMU NOGUCHI Through April 24 “On Becoming An Artist: Isamu Noguchi and His Contemporaries: 1922-1960” at the Noguchi Museum, 32-37 Ve r n o n B l vd . , L I C . $ 1 0 adults, $5 seniors and students. 204-7088. MANSHENG WANG Through May 27 “Mansheng Wang: Art and Artlessness” a t t h e G o d w i n - Te r n b a c h Museum. 997-4747. NY REGIONAL AESTHETICS Through June 30 “Express: L o c a l / N ew Yo r k Re g i o n a l Aesthetics” at the Queens College Art Center. 9973770.

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INDEPENDENCE Fridays and Saturdays, February 25, 26, March 4, 5 at 8 and Sunday, February 27 and Saturday, March 5 at 2. The Douglaston Commun i t y T h e a t re p re s e n t s t h e drama “Independence” at the Zion Episcopal Church in Douglaston. $15. 4823332 reservations. OTHELLO March 4-12 at Queensborough Communit y College. 631-6284. $10, seniors $5, facult y and students $3. SLOW DANCE March 18-27 new American musical Slow Dance will be performed at Queens Theatre in the Park. 760-0064. ALL SHOOK UP Sunday, March 27 features Elvis songs at Queensborough Communit y College. 631-6311. IN ARABIA May 6-13 “In Arabia We’d All Be Kings” by Stephen Adly Guirgis at Queensborough Communit y College. 631-6284. $10, seniors $4, facult y and students $3.

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