Monday, March 26, 2007

Wireless Connection - No Mas

The wireless/cell phone/PDA store on QB just east of Ascan was closed for good. Now where are we going to get wireless products? Oh yeah, one of the 75 other wireless places in town.

There's used to be a great little diner around there (Abby's I think), let's hope another one opens.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Park Slope Wrong Way

I think Forest Hills has Park Slope licked on a lot of things, but when it comes to community activism, they absolutely kick our ass.

Their Community Board has a sick website. Ours has none. Type in "Park Slope Community Group" and you'll get,,, a bunch of stuff on Atlantic Yards,, and a bunch of others - all updated frequently. Barbara Stuchinski has nothing. Then you got the Streetsblog/Transportation Alternatives always doing reports from there. Park Slope's a media monster and I have no idea how they have the time to fight as much as they do.

Recently, the Department of Transportation announced they wanted to switch 6th and 7th Aves from two way to one way. All the above groups went berserk. 'We've got to mobilize immediately' said a couple of commenters on one of the many Park Slope boards. I would love Forest Hills to mobilize for something. Better bagels, less Eastern European hair salons, something.

Anyway, so they fought the DOT and won. I couldn't believe how much the DOT kissed their ass, but I guess that's what you get when you mobilize. Problem is, those streets should be one-way and I think they fought just to fight.

I've been wanting Austin St. (our 7th Ave.) to be one-way for years and I know it'll never happen. Park Slope's argument was that it would make those streets more speedy and dangerous for small children. As a parent of a toddler, I totally understand that. But I'll trade a few MPH for the safety of knowing from what direction the cars are coming. Plus, you eliminate the SOB's making mid-block u-turns, and the morons who double-park waiting for a spot to open up (a one-way street, cars can pass them - or police can move them along). And, if a person wants to parallel park, he won't completely stop traffic behind him. All this adds up to less traffic and less honking. The car stereos from Briarwood don't get stuck behind double parked SUVs and you've got the street to yourself again.

Also, with the DOT so subservient to Park Slopers, they probably could have bargained more. Instead of just 'no!', maybe say ' We'll do it, but give pedestrians 30 seconds before the light goes green.' Or 'We'll do it, but we need parking permits for all residents. Otherwise, go screw yourself and your one-way plan.' It sounded like the DOT was willing to deal, but we'll never know.

Park Slope, I admire your power, but I think it went to your head this time.

Martha's Bakery

They're going to have SIXTEEN different kinds of buttercream cupcakes - yum.

Noshwalk 3/25/07

NOSHWALKS Sunday at 2:30 p.m., a walk through the Rego Park and Forest Hills sections of Queens, with samplings of ethnic cuisine, meeting in Queens in front of the A&D Deli, 93-07 63rd Drive. $33; students with ID, $16. Reservations: (212) 222-2243.

Friday, March 23, 2007

Queens Greenway

There's a movement to get Queens' own High Line park, but it's being fought. In fact, many CB 6 board members are fighting the mere consideration of the idea - refusing to even agree to a free study. There's an abandoned railway (when you're on Metropolitan, it has that horrendous car wash banner hanging from it), that runs from Rego Park down to Ozone Park. Some people want to clean it up and make it a bike path/park.

Many residents are against it thinking it'll bring noise and other problems to their backyards (many of which the trail runs through). So they're fine with it being the useless eyesore that it is. The abandoned line runs next to the new Trader Joe's so it would be a nice way for those without cars to get there.

It's on the outskirts of FoHi, so it doesn't affect us too much. But it's a little disappointing to hear a provocative idea like this shot down so quickly. It's one of the first battles between Queens' lifers and the newbies coming in.

Barbara Stuchinski, head of the Forest Hills Civic Association, is the path's biggest opponent. She's against pretty much everything - but would love King George to come back to Austin St. The Daily News did a piece on Forest Hills a few months ago and Ms. Stuchinski was the source. All she did was lament about how great it used to be. King George used to be here, the drug store/soda fountain was there, etc. Who gives a rat's ass?

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Martha's Country Bakery

They've posted a sample of the menu in the window - just east of Johnny Rocket's on Austin. All pastry type stuff. Cupcakes, black and white cookies, gelato, homemade pies, etc.

Forest Hills 72's on Sale

Zappos has a sale on Forest Hills 72's, but they're black. Not Forest Hills 72's best color. Still, if you need black to round out your collection, go to $129 plus shipping.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Wanted: Asian Fusion/Moroccan Lounge Experts

From the Craigslist Help Wanted Section:

Jade Eatery & Lounge in forest hills queens is seeking an expierienced, attractive, trendy waiter or waitress. We are a busy asian fusion restaurant / moroccan lounge. We are looking for someone to fill a full time position. 6 days tues-thurs 4pm-11pm, fri/sat 4pm-12:30, sun 4pm-10pm.

I admire Jade's resolve in getting a restaurant back into 1 Station Square. It was dark for years before their hard work turned out Jade and I applaud them. Asian Fusion? Fine. We've got 12 Thai places and 9 sushi ones, but fine. Have heard some great reviews and some bad ones. Everyone says the inside looks great.

But Moroccan Lounge? So if I go, is a monkey going to feed me dates? I don't know if this was an attempt at trying to be downtown or a play to get our tinted-window silver Maxima driving friends to order bottle service and pretend they're playaz.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

West Side Tennis Club Schedule Announced

They have announced the West Side Tennis Club schedule. The club will once again host the Sony Ericsson Tour Championship from August 21 - 25. It's a final tune-up to the US Open and gets famous players. There's also a few other tourneys of interest including a $50k Clay Court men's tournament in June that's open to everyone.

Most of these events are open to public viewing. I highly recommend going to a couple of matches this summer if you're around. No other area in NYC has anything like this and it's good to support it. Plus, the clubhouse and pro-shop will make you feel like you're on vacation in Cape Cod.

Here's a good NY1 piece about the stadium from 2004. They were talking about refurbishing it, but I don't think they've done anything with it yet. Tennis Fans Team Up To Restore Forest Hills Stadium To Former Glory

Joining the Club is expensive, but not as bad as a country club. You're looking at about $6 or 7k per year per person for tennis and pool, with monthly minimums on food at the club's restaurant. I've never joined, but I hope to someday. Where else in the city - or anywhere else for that matter - can you play grass court tennis on impeccable grounds?

Monday, March 19, 2007

Rite-Aid Buys Eckerd

Slow news day for Forest Hills. In minor news, Rite-Aid recently bought Eckerd and announced that all Eckerd stores will be rebranded as a Rite-Aid. The only store it affects in our area is the Eckerd in AQUA (group of prewars and Arbor Close bordered by Ascan Av, Queens Bl., Union Tk, Austin St.).

Friday, March 16, 2007

Frankie and Johnny's Pizza - No Mas

Frankie and Johnny's Pizza (next to the Midway) was closed this week by the board of health. While it's possible the inspectors might have mistaken some Rego Park taggin' teens for rats, there were probably other violations.

This place was up for sale for a while and there were understandably no takers. In the last few years there was a Krispy Kreme, pet store, and another pizzeria. It's an awkward spot for FoHi residents because unless you're going to the movies, there's no reason to be there. Delivery times always took longer than 90 minutes whenever I called, so that's out. So that leaves you with customers from the surrounding areas (Jamaica, Corona, Woodhaven) and that's not going to pay FoHi rent. Ciao Frankie and Johnny's. Tell H and H Bagels about the space on the way out.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Martha's Country Bakery

Welcome Martha's Country Bakery to Forest Hills (a couple of stores East of Johnny Rocket's).

Looks like it used to be in Astoria and people seemed to love it. Cupcakes, coffee, bakery stuff. It's a nice addition to Austin Street and a huge step up from what used to be there (T-Mobile). And anything that hurts Broadway Bakery is good with me.

Photos of the Astoria location (both above) courtesy of Wikipedia. Expect the store to be open in about a month.

Friday, March 9, 2007

Community Board Meeting

The Forest Hills Community Board (#6) meeting is Wednesday 3/14 at 7:30pm. It's at 80-02 Kew Gardens Rd, which is right around that weird Nathan's.