Residents from Forest Hills hosted the first virtual meeting of the Color of Justice (@COJ_FH) last week.“Forest Hills is a nice place to live,” said COJ president Titilayo Yasukawa. “But far too often Black concerns get overlooked or outright dismissed by other organizations. So we decided to create our own space that empowers its citizens to find solutions through political, civic and legislative engagement.” The goals of COJ include educating residents about local government, community issues, legislative policy, and civic organizations, as well as local elections and candidates running in them. Bigger goals will tackle social justice, inequities in education, housing, public health, and more. They are currently seeking to fill the positions of secretary and treasurer on its board.“Our first objective is to build membership and to educate on the local political process,” said COJ’s vice president Gideon Zvulon. “We want to facilitate access to local government and encourage civic engagement, because it is at this level where critical resources for our community are distributed. We need to ensure that we have a seat at the table in those discussions.”The upcoming local elections were a major topic during the inaugural meeting.“In order to affect change that would affect yourself, or your community starts at the local level,” said Zvulon,. “Our clear and initial choice is to get people involved locally. Secondly, educating people to know politicians who have the best interests at heart, instead of just the ones you know by name.”By Samantha Galvez-Montiel
The Forest Hills Memorial Day Ceremony is only a few weeks away, and organizers met together last week at the American Legion Continental Post 1424 to conduct their final preparations for the event.The occasion will take place on Sunday, May 30, in Remsen Park and pay tribute to all the men and woman who have died while in the U.S. military. Slated to go on for just over an hour, the event will be filled with music, speeches, and honors.This year, the ceremony will not only recognize fallen service members but will also honor the sacrifice of frontline workers. Members of the Forest Hills Volunteer Ambulance Corps will be honored at the event for their efforts in saving the local community from the COVID-19 pandemic.Michael Arcati is commander of Post 1424 and has been a major force in organizing this year’s ceremony. He served in the navy for a combined total of eight years as both a prosecutor and defense counsel. Specializing in international, criminal, and tax law, he’s been awarded the Bronze Star among other military accolades. It was his goal to extend Memorial Day to as many people as possible. “This event is not just for the veterans but for the community and the service that is central to how it functions.”Arcati couldn’t envision honoring sacrifice this year without paying homage those who grappled with the pandemic on behalf of Queens, especially those from the volunteer ambulance service. “Like a military they lined up side by side, and put their lives on the line without question,” he said. “These people never asked for a dime, and they need to be recognized.Read the full story by @andrebeganski by clicking on the link in our bio.
Arnold Stone, an award-winning sculptor, painter, illustrator, and a dentist, passed away at 49 in 1971,but his memory is very much alive thanks to Paula Stone Borge, his daughter, and Robert Andrew McKie, his stepson, who are preserving his artwork and sharing stories. Most recently, the nearly 2-story “Floating Leaves” sculpture fountain of the shuttered Parkside Chapel at 98-60 Queens Boulevard in Rego Park, was relocated off-site. This was after Rego-Forest Preservation Council’s initiative to secure an early 1960s prized work by the late sculptor Arnold Stone to a new home, ideally at a nearby cultural institution. Parkside Chapel by notable architects Henry Sandig and Robert Kasindorf, was designed as tribute to the Israelites, the Ten Commandments, and the Sinai desert, and offered a Modernist twist on traditional symbolism. : @michaelhperlman
On May 14, the Midway Theatre at 108-22 Queens Boulevard in Forest Hills reopened its doors. Operator Regal Cinemas decided last fall to close 543 theaters due to the pandemic, and the Midway was one of them.“I thought they were shutting their doors for good, so this is such wonderful news,” said local resident Christina Gennaro. “The history surrounding Forest Hills is what made me want to move here. Movie theaters like the Midway are living history.” With a largely intact vertical beacon, curved façade, and whimsical circular lobby with a sweeping staircase, the Art Moderne theater is one of the borough’s oldest, operating since 1942. The Midway was named after the Battle of Midway in World War II. Opening attractions were the U.S. Navy’s Technicolor short The Battle of Midway, as well as The Pied Piper and Just Off Broadway. Among the celebrities who made appearances were Bob Hope and Lucille Ball, who conducted a meet and greet. Over time, it transitioned from a single screen to a quad to nine screens. In more recent times, digital advances and recliners were introduced.“It holds fond memories,” said Jennifer Vega of the theater. “I’ve went there with my parents and siblings in the 1980s, had dates there in the late 1990s and 2000s, and then watched movies with my son.” The Midway was designed by America’s foremost theater architect, Scotland native Thomas White Lamb, along with consulting architect S. Charles Lee. Today, Tom Andrew Lamb of White Plains is preserving his great-grandfather’s legacy. Click the link in our bio to read the full story by @michaelhperlman
Hits: 41Summer at The Kew-Forest School July 6 – August 13, 2021 Summer at The Kew-Forest School in Queens provides children entering Kindergarten to Grade 5 with academic enrichment and recreational activities including arts, dance, computers,...
A virtual art contest and breast cancer fundraiser broadcast from Ridgewood Savings Bank in Forest Hills last Friday attracted 33 artists. Money raised from the event benefited Elmhurst Hospital and local nonprofit Paddle For The Cure (PFC).It was produced and co-hosted by this columnist and PFC founder Leah Salmorin. Technical support was provided by Michael Wechsler. Click on the link in our bio to read the story by @michaelhperlman
Following last year’s wildly successful screenings, the “Free Movie Nights at the Queens Drive-In” program plans on hosting six free events throughout the spring and summer of 2021.“We’re not out of the woods when it comes to COVID-19 just yet, but that doesn’t mean we can’t safely enjoy evenings in Flushing Meadows Corona Park with our family, friends and neighbors,” said Borough President Donovan Richards. “From kids flicks to cinematic classics, there is something for every family to enjoy on the big screen this spring.”The first screening was held on May 4. Appropriately, the original Star Wars was shown to celebrate “May the Fourth Be With You.” Future screenings will include the films Inside Out, Moonlight, Coming to America, Monsoon Wedding, and Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. A full list of movies and show times is available at @queensdrivein
Amid rising attacks on Asians, more than 1,000 people took to the streets in Flushing calling for an end to Asian hate crimes.The event was organized by the Borough President’s Office.Mayor Bill de Blasio reminded everyone of the important role Asian Americans have played in shaping the city."If you love New York City, you can’t take the contribution of the Asian-American community out of it,” he said. “The only way we are New York City today is because of what Asian Americans have done for us.”Senator Chuck Schumer spoke of a city of diversity, immigrants and unity and discussed the recently passed “COVID–19 Hate Crimes Act,” which among other things will make the reporting of hate crimes easier.“We want to tell those evil few who propagate the Asian hate that you are not new Yorkers, you are not Americans and under the new law we passed we will prosecute you and give you the punishment you deserve,” he told the crowd.Calling for a unified front against the attacks, Reverend Al Sharpton urged all community leaders to speak out and stop the violence.“When Blacks attack Asians, Black leaders need to stand up,” he said. “When whites attack others, whites need to stand up.”State Senator John Liu became emotional discussing reports of passersby refusing to intervene in some of the attack. He said it made him wonder if Asians are seen as less than human.“We are not dogs,” he said. “We are not the coronavirus. We are people, we are human, we are Americans.”According to the NYPD, in 2020 there was a 1,900 percent increase in attacks on Asians. But a presentative from the Asian American Federation said the statistics represent a huge undercount because many attack go unreported by the victims out of fear of retaliation or that they won’t be taken seriously.
When Claire Shulman passed away last August at the age of 94, Queens lost one of its greatest advocates. However, the legacy of the borough’s trailblazing first female borough president continues to live on and inspire.On Monday May 3, Borough President Donovan Richards presided over a ceremony unveiling “One Claire Shulman Way” as the vanity address of Borough Hall. “Claire Shulman was a larger-than-life figure who consistently defied expectations with her uncanny ability to get things done for the people of Queens,” said Richards. “Her death last year was a huge loss to all of us who relied on her friendship and counsel, but we keep her legacy and memory alive by permanently and prominently affixing her name to Queens Borough Hall.“From now on, everyone who visits the people’s house will see the name of Claire Shulman and reflect on the great work she did to build a better Queens,” he added.