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Restaurants & Food / Uncle Peters for special Holiday Lunches
« on: December 15, 2021, 09:29:22 AM »
 Want to let people know that lunch at Uncle Peters on Northern Blvd is usually pretty great but it's a special kind of restaurant for a splurge lunch here in JH. It's the food and the atmosphere and the professional staff that elevate the whole experience. An added feature of the outdoor dining shed is that the normal street traffic from Northern Blvd. is diminished and it's nice and quiet inside. Don't work for them but have been a couple of times lately and was pleasantly surprised at how nice the experience was. Any other favorites out there for a special place for lunch?

Neighborhood Chat / The New JH Community Center and a Senior component?
« on: December 07, 2021, 10:40:11 AM »
 There is a dearth of activity and attention here in JH for seniors. We are way behind our neighbors even in other Queens communities and it would be great to change that in the coming community center. We have heard a lot about the cost of childcare but the cost of elder care is five times that amount! Many of NYC's vast network of senior centers are multi-tasking as nursery and after school centers too. One of the senior centers on Manhattan's East Side offers healthy farm-to-table style meals for a couple of dollars to their members along with many other programs, classes and services. What a great help for families!
  JH needs a proper facility for its senior population now and for those eventually becoming seniors. See this NYTimes article about how someone in the US turns 65 every 8 seconds. Give the podcast on the excellent research by Ai Jen Poo and on Ezra Klein's podcast a listen today.

 So much debate has happened with 34th Open Streets. Can anyone please answer why the ave is
closed when it is pitch black out at 7:00 on a cold night? With proper data collection, this could be
right sized so that the timing of the closures matches usage, need and common sense safety. How
many streets are closed at this hour besides 34th Ave which is not well lit and is mostly residential?

  Am not able to find information on the locations of which of the 900+ stores that CVS plans to close soon. Does anyone else know how to find this? Or have any other info? The JH store feels kind of bare on the shelves but that could be due to the supply chain issues maybe. It's always felt like a pretty busy store but it does take up the whole block and has that parking lot so it might be attractive for other businesses if the rent is high and the lease is up. The other CVS up in the 90's is a very busy store too.

Neighborhood Chat / Small Business Saturday Nov.28, 2021 is tomorrow!
« on: November 27, 2021, 11:33:17 AM »
Shopping local is great for so many reasons. Our local shopping streets, 37th Ave, Northern Blvd. Roosevelt Ave, 82nd St., 74th Street and Junction Blvd. have an huge selection of locally made and international items for your holiday gifting. Whether it's Hanukkah or Christmas or another holiday of the season, please consider shopping locally. These areas took a big hit with COVID as people were shopping the big box stores we see so much in the neighborhood with deliveries. If you only shifted your purchases locally for these next fours weeks, we could see a big uptick if you are shopping for multiple gifts. Consider adding a stop at a cafe, bakery or restaurant or pick up some wine or spirits while you are at it. Small business Saturday is officially Nov. 28th.
   The whole neighborhood will benefit and we will add the holiday spirit to those streets and for those shopkeepers who keep us going these past 20 months and more. Keep it local if you can!

 FYI - if Saturday doesn't work for you, the Momo Crawl is back on Sunday and that supports a great local organization. Please try to come out...

Neighborhood Chat / Pandemic puppies and dog run for pay?
« on: November 19, 2021, 08:44:32 AM »
 This NYT article was interesting about some pay for dog runs in NYC with a wide range of fees. There is a quiet, modest - and well run- dog park here in JH on 69th Street near the corner of 35th Ave with a suggested contribution but these some of the dog parks listed in the times are fancy and expensive!

 If JH wants more dog parks, which direction makes sense for the whole community?

Neighborhood Chat / New Soccer Pitches coming to Jackson Heights!
« on: November 10, 2021, 05:17:09 PM »
 There is already one at the Bulova Park, near Home Depot, and it's great. Soccer is sooo popular in this neighborhood and it will be much appreciated to have some of these mini pitches populate our small parks and school spaces. Yipee!

 I've heard of some co-ops replacing slate roofs with other materials that are supposed to look as nice but not have some of the hassles of slate. Has anyone done this lately? Care to say anything about the pros or cons?

 This is hard to imagine it being such a deal in this day and age, even in the Catholic schools, but there is something sad and so backward about this happening. I hope he gets some great
offers from the publicity.

Restaurants & Food / UFC is Unidentified Flying Chicken on Roosevelt
« on: October 22, 2021, 02:04:04 PM »
  Giving a shout out to UFC chicken - and now many other things - on Roosevelt and 71st. Give them another look if you haven't been lately. They have added delicious noodle dishes with glass noodles and veg, bulgogi sliders and fries. Poutine. And a host of other things on top of their delicious legs and wings that we have been enjoying for awhile. They also have one of the best beer menus in the neighborhood. Growlers for takeout. No I do not work for them but just respect them for continually improving and adding to their already wonderful menu and want to spread the word. It's a cute place too if you are eating in these days...

 Yes, it's here, finally, the long wished for Jackson Heights Community Center! Not certain of a lot of the details but this will go a long way in helping with activities all year round as well as adding to a meetup for locals and a bunch of other community needs. Hip, hip hooray to Danny Dromm and the other politicians and countless neighbors and activists who have been asking for this for years. Seriously, years.
  So now we can reconfigure the needs of the community as a whole. Include as many people as possible, as many ages as possible, as many streets as possible to form a cohesive plan for everyone to have activities and exercise and community involvement here in JH. Rain or shine,
heat wave or cold snap, this facility will be available and this is absolutely great news!
   If you haven't heard much about it yet, read below. Of course we will all need to help fund raise and give suggestions but the groundwork is laid here.

Neighborhood Chat / The HORT?
« on: October 07, 2021, 03:10:34 PM »
 There is an obscene amount of money being spent on 34th Avenue, not in the median, or to fix the many issues but to replant those hulking planters that were just installed. It's a waste of resources when so many other areas in the neighborhood are looking very shabby right now. The HORT is the same group that I believe does those overly fancy displays at Diversity Plaza, am I right? They are beautiful arrangements, kind of like hotel landscaping, and it looks odd juxtaposed with the rest of the scene there. Anyone know who is working with this well financed group and how they could interact more with the local gardening community to conserve and spread around resources??

Neighborhood Chat / Conversation about Mid- day changes to Open Streets
« on: September 22, 2021, 10:05:14 AM »
  It appears that Covid will be with us for awhile longer but many in the community are back at work, in school, keeping appts, home improvements, etc. Should this be the time where we have a dialogue about the lag in use mid-day of the 34th Ave Open Streets? The darker nights that will be here shortly make for an unsafe amount of visibility for those later hours too.
  The hours that the street is happily in use seem to be early, as in the 8-10am time and then somewhere in the 2:30- 3:00 to 6-7. Opening the street to alternate needs for schools, seniors, residents, deliveries, sanitation crews, etc. would be very welcome to those who live on the avenue. It seems like a reasonable and fair compromise to have a dialogue about and it's one that neighbors would very much welcome.

 This letter was posted on another site and said to be taken down. I thought it was so well written that it should be seen by others in the neighborhood and am taking the liberty of copying it here. Author is Joseph de S. and I believe it went to a couple of sites like TransAlt and something on OS FB.

 “It should be noted the the author is the admin/moderator of a FB page that is ostensibly for all residents of Jackson Heights, yet posts that are even mildly critical of OS on 34th Ave are routinely deleted, and those authors are often time blocked from posting at all.
What is also missing from this opinion piece is what the leaflets looked like. They were nothing like the official leaflets that one would expect to see announcing “no parking” due to filming, road repairs, utility work, etc.. They looked (and apparently were) leaflets printed on a copier without any indication this was a permitted/approved road closure. Having had other leaflets posted by those running 34th Ave OS that were not permitted/approved, residents were right to be wary. There was NO concerted effort to “ruin daycamp” - a post was made on a few JH pages questioning the legitimacy of the leaflets. When the handmade efforts were replaced with official leaflets, residents complied.
What is also missing from this piece, (and the coverage of 34th Ave OS on Streetsblog, and other media), is that fact the those of us who “oppose OS” are not opposing the concept of OS but rather how it has been, and is being implemented on 34th Ave. Many of us have repeatedly stated this in communications with DOT, elected officials, the various FB pages dedicated to Jackson Heights, as well as with our neighbors, and friends in JH. But that doesn’t fit with the narrative I suppose.
What has always been advocated is compromises like:
• seasonal open streets - with more, and more adults returning to their offices, and children returning to school, why continue to close 34th Ave 12 hours a day, 7 days a week? Seasonal
OS (ie; Memorial to Labor days) makes more sense.
• banning electric scooters, bikes, Vespas, etc. from OS - the riders barely, if ever, obey any rules, exceed the 5 MPH limit by many times, swerve around pedestrians at high speed, do not heed the red lights for North or South bound traffic, and have proven in JH, and other OS areas around the city to be dangerous, causing injuries, even death.
• no vendors - there has always been an ice cream truck, and pushcart vendors around Travers Park for decades. That makes sense. But with 34th Ave OS, there has been an explosion of unlicensed vendors setting up shop on the medians selling everything from food, drinks, housewares, jewellery, clothing, toys, etc.. It must be remembered that 34th Ave is a residential street - the entire area under OS is made up of residential apartment buildings, schools, and a church. The only commercial businesses on 34th Ave are the 3 located right off the BQE at 70th thru 69th streets, and the parking lot for the supermarket at Junction. The vendors not only destroy the plantings in the median that so many enjoy, but are a nuisance to 34th Ave residents that they shouldn’t have to put up with.
• parades - no parades on 34th (with the median, they wouldn’t work anyway), but when 37th Ave or Northern Blvd are closed to traffic for the many parades we have in JH, 34th Ave should be opened to traffic to ease congestion in JH.
• trash - with OS there have two things that have increased on 34th Ave - trash, and dog droppings; both on the street, and the medians. While many of the maintenance workers in the buildings on 34th do their best to clean up what they can, the trash does attract more vermin to 34th Ave. which is not desirable no matter where you stand on OS.
• no cookouts/parties - both last summer, and this summer, we’ve seen individual families, and groups block off sections to hold private cookouts/parties. BBQs, beach/lawn chairs, tables, coolers, amplified music. Again, no matter where you stand on OS, you would agree this is not only inappropriate, against the concept of OS, but again it creates huge nuisances for the residents of 34th Ave.
• questionable activities on 34th - whether it’s salsa lessons, Zumba classes, concerts, religious gatherings, and yes, “daycamps” - it’s not an appropriate use. There are 8 parks/playgrounds within walking distance of 34th Ave that can, and should be used for these activities, not the street. Yet, many of the playgrounds remain locked up, unused - why is no one advocating for their use for some of these activities?
No one I know of is JH is opposed to Fresh Air Fund daycamps. Many of us attended them when we were young. We do question why they are now taking place on asphalt. In addition to the 8 parks/playgrounds that would be more appropriate to use, JH is about 15 mins away from 800 acres of real parkland with trees, grass, sports fields - surely any of these would be safer, and offer more fun/activities for children. Yes, we played in the street growing up, we yelled “car!” to clear the street when one came, but our daycamp was never on the street. To many of us, it just makes no sense, which is why we’ve been questioning the rationale behind it.
A few short years ago, many parents bemoaned the lack of greenspace in JH, yet now it’s perfectly fine to have children attending a “daycamp” on asphalt in 90F+ weather.
To listen to those in favor of OS, you’d think there was no where else for residents to jog, walk, ride bikes other than 34th Ave OS. Make mention of the difficulties the elderly, and handicapped have encountered, and they’re “poo-poo’d” away. To question OS is to be labeled as “selfish”.
There are real, legitimate concerns that residents have about how 34th OS has been/is being implemented. There needs to be discussion, review, and compromise by all in order to get to a place where both sides of OS can be satisfied.”

 Sudden notices about moving your parked car on 34th ave between 73rd and 72nd streets on the North side for 12:00AM or it will be towed. I believe this is an illegal amount of notice - signs appeared to go up today- but no one wants to get towed so get out there first, move your vehicle and complain later.

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