Thursday, May 31, 2007

East Side, West Side


You're not going to believe this. The townhouses on the WEST side of 72nd Ave are now for sale. And they're being pitched as "perfect for developers." Now, I'm told that these have some true historical significance, so we might be able to landmark them.

Please call Melinda Katz's office or fax her. You can even email her if you like. Just do what you can so Forest Hills d0esn't look like Junction Blvd at Horace Harding.
Melinda Katz
Phone: 718-544-8800
Fax: (718) 544-4452
Email: katz@council.nyc.ny.us (but I don't know if she even looks at those)

The sales pitch: http://www.masseyknakal.com/buildingphotos/108-17%2072nd.pdf

Dancing at Forest Park

On Monday nights through the summer at Forest Park. . .

Dancing Under the Stars at Forest Park
Beginning Monday, Jun 04, 2007

6:00 pm - 7:30 pm
Free International Dance Lessons for all ages taught by professional dance instructors.
Location: Wallenberg Square. Park Lane South @ Metropolitan Avenue

More Information: Phone number: 718-235-4100

http://nycgovparks.org/sub_your_park/park_info_pages/park_info.php?propID=Q015

Forest Hills Art Show Reception

"Exploring a World of Art" open theme, all media exhibition of art at the AQA Gallery
Gallery Exihibit: June 2nd - 23rd Public Reception: Saturday, June 9th, 2-4pm

99-10 Metropolitan AvenueForest Hills, NY 11375 Regular Gallery hours: Tuesday-Saturday, 1-6pm.

AQA Website: http://www.arts4u.org

TJ's Envy?


This Chowhound post seemed like an odd response to a nothing little post about the Forest Hills Trader Joe's. Comparing square feet now? I'm probably reading into it, but it looks like some borough is getting a little jealous. . .

Novo 64 (64th and Yellowstone) Job Listing

FOREST HILLS, NEW YORK - RECEPTIONIST POSITION AVAILABLE FOR LUXURY CONDOMINIUM APT SALES OFFICE

WE ARE LOOKING FOR RECEPTIONIST/HOSTESS FOR A LUXURY CONDOMINIUM APTS SALES OFFICE IN FOREST HILLS NEW YORK. MUST HAVE EXCELLENT PHONE MANNERS, INTERPERSONAL SKILLS AND STELLAR PROFESSIONAL APPEARANCE. THE DUTIES INCLUDE GREETING CUSTOMERS, ANSWERING PHONES, ADMINISTRATIVE TASK. POSH WORK ENVIRONMENT. OFFICE OPENING BEGINNING OF JUNE, POSITION AVAILABLE IMMEDIATELY. FULL TIME, WEEK-ENDS AVAILABLE. SALARIED COMPENSATION. MUST LIVE IN THE IMMEDIATE PROXIMITY OF FOREST HILLS. RUSSIAN SPEAKING A + PLEASE FAX COVER LETTER AND RESUME TO 212-448-1090 OR E-MAIL gigi@novo64.com, GIGI PIERRE, DIRECTOR OF SALES.



Congratulations, David from the Queens Central forums who predicted:

Forest Hills or Rego Park, I know I’d be hard pressed to spend the inevitable $600k+ for a 2 BR in THAT area. They’ll get scooped up by Russians foreign investors.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Note to Martha's: Scrap the Waitress Service

My wife and son walked me to the LIRR this morning. Was a little early for the next train so we went to Martha's. We made our orders, coffee (iced for her) and a cupcake for the boy. Counter person asked if we were staying or going. I said staying since I had about ten minutes to kill before the train. That's where the trouble started.



She told us to sit down. Now it's a full-on waitress service. Menus, water, all of it. Then everyone behind the counter was confused - did they order already or should we do it again with the waitress? Who got the cupcake? What kind was it?



Martha's, don't make this harder than it has to be. Just serve the coffee/pastries at the counter and let people sit down for five minutes to enjoy it.


I say this because I don't Martha's to get Cami'ed, which apparently is happening at Cabana Express. Cafe Cami was that elusive American Bistro that everyone at Queenscentral.com is wishing for. Well it existed about two years ago. The food was the best on Austin Street by far. But the place went under because the service was so incredibly slow (and the location sucked). Nobody had two hours to spare for a stack of blueberry pancakes - no matter how great they were.

Scrap the waitress service. We would have gone to Piu Bello if we wanted that. Just let us order and sit for a few minutes. It's worked out okay for Starbucks.

Only in Forest Hills Kids - Only in Forest Hills


From today's, yes today's, Cindy Adams NY Post column comes this out-of-the-blue mention of our own Bartini's.




Forest Hills, booze, Cindy Adams. Now, that's retro.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

DB's Wins Over Another

Another great review for DB's (Danny Brown's) which is quickly becoming Forest Hills' coolest restaurant. Is it in Nick's territory yet? The Forest Hills 72 restaurant categories are much like those of hurricanes. Nick's is a category 5. It's where you take your most close-minded Manhattanite friends (we all have them) and send them back on the F saying 'now I get it.' You might even get another visit next year.


On the notch below, category 4's include Dee's, Q, Pinang, Five Burros and a few others. Those same Woody Allen wannabees will give you a "This is really good. . .for Queens." Most Forest Hills restaurants are 3 and below. You'd sooner order a few pies from AJ's than take them there.

Side Note:

DB's and Jade opened at about the same time. Jade got all the press, is in a superior location, and has much more room. Yet, there seems to be no contest in which is a better dining experience. Plus, via Queens Central there are preliminary reports of Bartini's crowd invading Jade's silly Morroccan lounge. Now that's a lot of cell phones.

Congrats DB's for making it about the food.

Q54 to stop at Atlas Park



The Q54 will be re-routed to by bypass a portion of Metropolitan Ave to stop at Atlas Park. I'm not sure the effective date, but it's soon.




On the map above, the route in red is the new route. The route in blue is the old route.




Don't know how much this affects the car-less in Forest Hills, since most live closer to Austin - which is a hike from Metropolitan when you're carrying bags from Atlas Park. Yes, you can transfer to the Q23, but nobody's going to spend an entire Saturday on buses to go to California Pizza Kitchen. I guess this move is for other neighborhoods (Kew Gardens, etc) which have higher concentrations of residences near Metropolitan.


Friday, May 25, 2007

Good Godspell


Forest Hills theatre group "The Parkside Players" is putting on Godspell this week and next. It's at 71st and Union Turnpike. Check it out, and walk up to DB's afterwards to get drunk and talk about how you're going to audition for the next one. They welcome newcomers.

www.parksideplayers.com

Festival for the Arts Schedule

On June 10th, it's the Forest Hills Festival for the Arts, aka the street fair on Austin St. The stage will be on 70th Rd (restaurant row) where the acts below will be performing. Courtesy of shopforesthills.com (the commercial site by the Forest Hills Chamber of Commerce), here is what you can expect:


11AMKids Theater by Ibble Bibble & Stewzo. A silly show that introduces kids to live theater, featuring original songs with oodles of fun and kid participation.

12PMBombazo Dance Theater A Puerto Rican folkloric dance celebration performed by a talented troupe that dances to the beat of native drums. It's an exciting, colorful show!

1PMKaissa Born in Cameroon, Kaissa brings the beauty and joy of African song, dance and rhythm to the stage. She torus around the world and has performed with many well-known African and American artists including Diana Ross.

2PMMinx Classic Rock Band New York City's own powerhouse classic rock 'n roll band featuring top hits that make everyone want to sing along.

3PMAmanda Homi Exotic singer and song writer born of English and Indian descent, Amanda brings a musical journey of the world with her, in music that is true to its international sources and at the same time offers the best of great pop music. Performin in Greece, Spain, Senegal, Jamaica and Canada she has also performed back up vocals and percussion with the legendary Jackson Browne.

4PM George Gee Orchestra World-renowned swing bandleader George Gee brings his orchestra to the festival so everyone an jump, jive and wail to some great big band sounds. His sets draw brig crowds and folks come up and try to swing their dancing skills. George's second set is a tribute to New Orleans and the red ot jazz will make the crowd come alive as if they're partying at Mardi Gras!


In other words, I'll see everybody at 4pm on 70th Rd.

Prayers for Jimenez

This Memorial Day, take a quick second to pray for Alex Jimenez from Corona. Alex is one of three, make that two, missing soldiers in Iraq. One of the bodies of the three was found yesterday, it was not Jimenez.

No Future for the Austin Street Psychic

The psychic on top of the Nine West on Austin East is closed. It's a second floor store so don't expect anything substantial to replace it.

"Jazz" Summer Series Forest Hills

The Jazz Summer Series is back. On three Thursdays in August, (8/9. 8/16, 8/23) 70th Rd, aka Restaurant Row, will be closed to traffic and a band will play. They've been doing this for the last few years.

Does anyone have any ideas to liven this up? It's a great idea, but the last few times I've gone, it's awfully old and not that much fun. I've got Leslie Brown's email address (the Forest Hills Chamber of Commerce organizes this thing) and can send her suggestions. I'm sure she'll be happy to delete them.

Anyway, leave any suggestions in the comments section or start a thread at http://www.queenscentral.com/forums/

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Congratulations Little Guys

The New York City Department of Education released the 2006-2007 English Reading Comprehension test scores this week. Because of a law change, city scores were predicted to go down. The law said that recent immigrants (those here for at least one year) must take the test. Before this year, if you were here for 3 years or less, you were exempt. Well, city test scores did go down. From the Daily News:

New York's elementary school students' reading scores fell across the board this year - but instead of knocking the kids or teachers, school officials put the blame on the feds.
A new federal requirement has compelled more non-English-speaking students to take the tests this year, lowering the overall scores
.

There were only a handful of schools that actually did better than the year before. And guess what? Yes, PS 101 was among them. 2006 92% of third graders passed. 2007 it went UP to 93.3%. PS 196 also went up (as usual), but I don't remember the scores.

Check them out here . Guess we got some pretty smart immigrants coming to Forest Hills.

Outdoor Cafes


For your Memorial Day Weekend dining, here's a list of licensed outdoor cafe's in Forest Hills. Everyone else doing it is an outlaw.

The Bloom Off La Rosa?

Both times I've walked by Latina Cabana Express this week, it's been empty. Last week there were lines out the door. Did I just pick bad times or is this place in trouble?

On the other side of Austin, fellow newcomer Martha's has been "ridiculously slammed everyday since we opened" according to the counter person today.

I wish them both well and will order something from Cabana Xpress this weekend for support.

More Memorial Day Stuff

A few things - Mayor Bloomberg will be at the Metropolitan Avenue parade - the mayor goes every year. For Racked.com readers, just take the Q54 from Williamsburg. Maybe Bloomberg will save you a seat since there's no way he's got the onions to take a private car.

Bonus tidbit, on the next day Councilmember Melinda Katz will be at the Glendale Memorial Day Parade. She will be singing the Star Spangled Banner. I'm not kidding. She's apparently a great singer. I know her dad was the conductor for the Queens Symphony Orchestra, but didn't know she was a musician. It's tempting to make fun, but that's a freaking hard song to sing. If she can pull it off, more power to her.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Memorial Day Parade

A reminder that the Forest Hills Memorial Day Parade is Sunday at Noon on Metropolitan Ave. It's one of the bigger ones in the city.

It starts at Ascan and Metropolitan and runs west until Trotting Course Lane (where you can grab a peek at the Trader Joe's progress).

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Trader Joe's/Staples First Floor, Michael's Up Top







The plans for 90-30 Metropolitan Ave are a little more clear. These images are from the sales material posted on the developer's website. Trader Joe's will go on the first floor with an escalator separating it from Staples in the same building. On top will be a Michael's, which is kind of like Staples, isn't it? How many magic markers and oak tag can one building sell?



Anyway, who cares about those two. Expect TJ's to be open in the Fall. Congratulations to Robert K. Futterman & Associates. The Trader Joe's Forest Hills signing is up for the REBNY Deal of the Year award. It's the only real estate deal outside of Manhattan nominated.

Over and Out




The lower picture was as of last night (can you tell the stop work order was lifted?). By now, the whole structure is probably gone. Thanks Bahar or whatever the hell your name is, you've got great taste. Expect a four-story nothing of a building to go up in its place.

By the way, I don't expect anybody here to ever enter one of these ugly-ass buildings - except to find violations (graffiti, sidewalk maintenance, snow removal, elevator service) and call 311. Don't give any of these businesses your business.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Townhouse Lost

It's not going to happen for the last townhouse on the east side of 72nd Ave. Just spoke to Melinda Katz's office and there really isn't anything they can do to stop it. Bahar's plans conform to the zone (though I have my doubts) and he can do what he wants. What he's going to want is to tear down the historic house and put up an ugly medical clinic. It's a loss anyway you look at it.

James in Katz's office left messages to Bahar (real name Franklin Baharestani) to talk to him about preserving the look of the townhouse. But even if Bahar calls James back, the Katz office request will be just that, a request. There's nothing legally stoping Bahar from tearing down the townhouse, which he surely will do.

Not a good way to start the week.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Sunday Editorial: Good Schools, Good Grief

Everyone on Earth knows Manhattan gets better press than Queens. Most of it deserved. But in this NY Observer article, I think the 'I love Manhattan, I'm nothing without Manhattan, Manhattan is better than my hometown Upper Darby so it must be better than Queens even though I've never been there, Manhattan completes me" trend is getting out of hand.

This article in the New York Observer is on the 'Gold Rush' of uptown Manhattan, which apparently is being fueled by families. Now, I'm a family and sometimes think of returning to Manhattan, so I wanted to check it out. I couldn't get past the bolded claims:

"It is exactly this marriage of relatively inexpensive land prices and a Manhattan address that is bringing more real-estate savvy developers and buyers to neighborhoods above the park.
Mr. Stahelski, whose project at 245 West 115th Street is already sold-out (“We’re done!”).


And what kinds of buyers are hoping to take advantage of lots of space, easy access to public transportation, good Manhattan schools and safer streets? Yup, you guessed it—families.

“I think our buyers are almost exclusively coming from the Upper East and Upper West Sides,” They are comfortable up there, they have kids and they know there are good schools around,” said Gary Davis, executive vice president of development at the Athena Group. That firm’s 111 Central Park North (the marketers’ moniker for 110th Street) is already over 70 percent sold."


Back to reality (and nothing screams reality more than Queens), the two elementary schools which are assigned to the condo addresses above are PS 76 and PS 208. According to independent third party GreatSchools.net, PS 76 got a rating of a 2 out of a possible 10. PS 208 got a 1 out of 10.

Forest Hills' PS 101 and PS 196 both got 9 out of 10. At 101, 92% of third graders met or exceeded standards in English Language Arts. The state average is 69%. At PS 76 in the 'good school' district in Manhattan, it's 35%.


Why bring this up? I made my choice to buy in Forest Hills because of schools. Others, like my Queens Central friend, bought based on more important factors, like cupcakes. Just kidding Steve.

If schools are in your future, Forest Hills is worlds better than most parts of Manhattan. It's one of the very few things at which we kick their ass.

And if you buy in Manhattan and send your kid to a shitty school just so your friends have to dial 212 to reach you? There's no hope for you or your kin anyway.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

New Condo

Novo 64? From Craigslist

Brand New Construction Project opening up in Forest Hills, if you missed your chance at the Windsor, you can get into the next hot new condo project in the area. This Luxury full service condo will feature a doorman/concierge, fitness center, roof deck and parking in addition to owners lounge and a 15 year tax abatement... Email me to get on the Friends and Family list... only 10% down...
Location: Forest Hills, Queens

Friday, May 18, 2007

Townhouse Update 9:13AM EDT 5/18

Just spoke to Coucilwoman Katz's office. They are aware of the townhouse situation and according to her office PUT IN A STOP WORK ORDER ON THE SITE.

Hopefully Bahar will observe the stop work order. If you see work being done on the site, call 311 immediately. Tell them you were told a stop work order was on the site, but there is still work being done.

Keep calling Coucilwoman Katz's office at 718-544-8800. Ask for James, he's the one heading up the 72nd Ave. townhouse situation.

If by some miracle this thing is stopped and the townhouse remains, a huge thank you to the unlikely pair of the Queens Crapper (who was writing about this back in February) and Councilwoman Melinda Katz. But that's premature at this point since I have my doubts on Bahar observing the stop work order.

Keep calling Melinda Katz. Her office seemed relieved to be talking to someone under 70 and she needs to know we're paying attention.

Latest Townhouse Update


The demolition has begun and the windows have been removed. I'll try to get a picture later today.


In the meantime, my suggestion is it's too late to organize as it looks like it's a matter of days before this house comes down. If you care about this, it's best to call Councilwoman Melinda Katz' office. Don't email, it's a waste of time. Call or fax.



Contact Information: Melinda Katz
District Office Address:104-01 Metropolitan Ave.,

Forest Hills, New York 11375

District Office Phone No.: (718) 544-8800

District Office Fax No.: (718) 544-4452


Just say something like "Good morning. My name is _____. I'm a constituent of Councilwoman Katz. I'm calling to express my concern about the demolition of all the historic townhouses on the east side of 72nd Ave between Queens Blvd and Austin St. I'm disappointed that no effort was put in by my elected official to preserve this part of Forest Hills History".


That's all you have to say. Please be polite since we're going to be working with her on other things. You can't totally blame Katz if we don't do anything about it either. It's probably too late to save this one, but we have to stop this before it happens again.

H and R Block - No Mas

On Austin East, between Savvy and Diva (only in Forest Hills these names). It's a few doors down from the Austin House coffee shop. Savvy next door is also no mas so if it's the same owner it would make a huge new space.

If it's a new clothing store, some guesses on the name to fit in:

Mr. Big Shot
Fancy Schmancy
Oh La La
Clothes You Buy Now So I Make Payment On 11 Bedroom House On 20x40 Lot on Jewel Ave I Just Build. (the honest approach)

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Future of Forest Hills 3

Not as much fun as a new bakery, but potentially pretty important. Today's New York Times has a piece on how the city wants to develop the West Side Rail Yards (around 33rd and 11th). They want to make it a 21st Centry Rockefeller Plaza. One developer called it 'The Future for New York' and Bloomberg said he could see five Empire State Buildings built on the land.

Why care? Because Forest Hills is 12 minutes away by LIRR. So in 100 years when the thing is built, you can get to work in 12 minutes.

Rockaway Bedding - No Mas

Over on the north side of Queens Blvd, Rockaway Bedding on Queens Blvd near the Kennedy House is going out of business. A big space, but QB doesn't exactly have the best track record when it comes to cool stores. I'm pretty sure the retail space is owned by the co-op above it so my guess is it'll be something conservative and reliable with the rent. Another mattress store or a bank.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Martha's Country Bakery is Open

The much blogged about Martha's Country Bakery is open and it looks excellent. It's more of a pastry bakery than breads. Good coffee, and most importantly, delivered in cups with raised lids. Before now, Starbucks was the only place in Forest Hills to get the superior-designed raised lids. Everything else is flat. Small detail, but it speaks of the detail and effort that Martha's shows.

It's a long narrow shop with seating in the back. It's not throw-away seating like you find at Bagels Etc, but well designed small colorful block chairs and booths. There are some signs on the wall with kitschy sayings (Life's too short for coffee, have a danish too). It's obvious they're not just going after Saturday customers on their way to Verizon Wireless, like those dirty pizza places on Continental.

You get the feeling that they're trying, which immediately puts them in the top 10% of Forest Hills restaurants.

Competition:

Broadway Bakery: If you're not blasted out of the place with the static-y radio booming salsa, you're rewarded with stale donut reeking of pizza and watery coffee. Winner? Martha's in a landslide.

The Romanian Bakery on 67th: People love this place, but they're assholes behind the counter and I can't give them any business. Crappy location. Winner? Martha's.

Bonnelle on Ascan: Great coffee (but in flat lids), and terrific pastries and bread. About 1/10th the size of Martha's. Better location in my opinion. Winner? Bonnelle because of the bread, but it's still very early.


Queens Central also went there this morning so please check out his report.

Monday, May 14, 2007

The End is Near


Speaking of non-descript shitty medical offices. . .


This sign just went up in front of the last remaining eastside townhouse on 72nd Ave between QB and Austin. The new owner/douche - Franklin Baharestani aka Frank Bahar - has single-handedly changed the character of block by buying the early century townhouses one by one - tearing them down - and putting up semi-tall office buildings in their place. He even puts his initials on the top for full villainous effect.

Previous Bahar works on the block:

Town House at 108-14 72nd Ave: Demolished 2002 (left of townhouse pictured)

Town House at 108-10 72nd Ave: Demolished 2006 (right of townhouse pictured)

And the pictured Town House at 108-12 72nd Ave: To Be Demolished 2007........................................
How does one man take a row of townhouses in the one of the best neighborhoods in NYC and make it an office park? Who's to blame? Stuchinski? She doesn't care about Austin St., only 7-11's on Metropolitan. Bloomberg? Come on. Melinda Katz? There's a start.

All of this happened under Melinda Katz and does she really want her legacy to be turning 72nd Ave. from townhouse row into office building alley? If she's seeking higher office - and of course she is - she can't want this on her record.


Also, is this legal? The buildings are in a C4-2 zone which is supposedly low-rise commercial. Are four story office buildings legal in a C4-2? If you think it's no big deal - Natural, 5 Burros, and pretty much all of Austin St. east of Continental is a C4-2 so what's to stop Bahar from buying all of them? Granted, this is only one half block of the hundreds that make up Forest Hills. But do we need more protection to preserve some of the key other ones?


Finally, do we care? That's not a knock, but are these townhouses really considered important to Forest Hills. I mean, there are still townhouses across the street from Bahar Alley and those business aren't exactly the cream of the crop (Dakota Realty 4 U). This isn't Station Square or Austin St. Park we're talking about. But still, if someone wanted to make a stink about this, I'd like to join. I'd love to force Bahar to keep this townhouse intact and remind himself of what used to be there. If anyone has any experience in blocking something like this, let's hear it.
I can understand one townhouse, but the entire block without a whimper from a public official? Am I missing something?

Congrats Atlas Park







Just a quick note to congratulate the people behind the-just-about-completed Atlas Park. I went over the weekend and what they've done in the last year is just amazing. It's wide open, certain parts keep the industrial feel of the Atlas railroad terminal it was before the area was built. And, it's going after the right tenants.

Dahlia Flowers, one of the tenants, has only two other stores - one at Grand Central Station, the other at Rockefeller Plaza. I asked the manager why put the third one in a defunct railroad terminal in Glendale Queens. She said 'because they asked'. Hear that landlord of Vincci?

Make no mistake, the developers of Atlas Park are counting on people like us to make the venture successful. With Borders Cafe, Joseph A. Bank, Amish Market, Marni, White House Black Market, Starbucks, Shiro, Chopin Chemists, Pasticcio, Rosetta Wines, and more on the way, let's face it, it's not trying to lure anyone away from Queens Center Mall.

The onions on these guys who built this. Can you imagine how easy (and profitable) it would have been just to build crappy housing, medical offices, or a second-rate corporate park? Between the design and choice of retail/dining, it's clear they have a very specific upscale/hip shopper in mind. And they have not wavered from that target - no matter how many times Value Depot has called. It's nice to see somebody actually seem to want our business. I hope those of us with cars find the time to check it out.

Anyway, congrats Atlas Park. How do we get your leasing staff to work on Austin Street.

C-Town Out, Country Markets In


Over on the west side of FoHi, the owners of the C-Town on Yellowstone have changed the name to more crunchy Country Markets.


Nothing may change on the inside, but the mere fact that they acknowledge the wildly popular Whole Foods/Trader Joe's trend and try to cash in on it, has to be considered progress. It's nice to see these owners see that there's no value in the C-Town brand (or Trade Fair for that matter) to the new Forest Hills residents and adjust accordingly.


Good luck Country Markets. You'll need it when TJ's opens up a quarter mile south of here.

Sunday Morning in AQUA




















A few pictures from an early morning walk with my two-year old in AQUA (square formed by Ascan Ave, Queens Blvd, Union Turnpike, Austin St.). If I ever sell my apartment, I'm having the open house on a Sunday at 8am. Hands down, the best time of the week to see FoHi.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Forest Hills Clay Court Classic/Jazz Festival

Yet another reminder that next week is the Forest Hills Clay Court Classic and Jazz Festival. It's open to everyone. Saturday's the big day, but it will be fun all week.

By the way the Tennis Club is having a special of $1000 off initiation if you sign up between now and July 4th. $1500 off if you bought a place in FoHi (must sign up 30 days after closing). For a family of three, you're looking at about $4k a year for non tennis and $8k for tennis. Those are very approximate and might be way off. Call the club if you're interested. I'm not a member, but maybe one day. www.foresthillstennis.com

More about next week's event:

Free admission to opening rounds Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.
Thursday:Tennis matches and Jazz music all day. Free tennis clinic for adults from 1pm - 3pm (must call to RSVP).

Friday:Tennis matches and Jazz music all day.

Saturday - the big day:Tennis Carnival for entire Family 10am - Noon.Brunch on the Terrace 11am - 3pm.Food Court open 11am - 3pm.Wine, Champagne and Stoli tasting Noon - 2pm.Men's Final 2pm.

If you don't know where the West Side Tennis Club is, it's where Jimi Hendrix opened for the Monkees.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Scoop of the Week


Wish it were more exciting. The huge Bang Bang space has been rented. The new tenants?

New York and Company

It's a mall-friendly clothing store. Should fit in nicely, next to Banana Republic and Sephora. Here is the website with confirmation

http://www.nyandcompany.com/nyco/company/locator.jsp;jsessionid=FF80CBBA63D09749598442A41337C9DA.prod7b

As far as neighborhood impact, it doesn't look like it will have much of one. No worse than Bang Bang certainly. A lot of you are going to be pissed about this, the continuing mallification of Austin St. But it could have been a Conway or a KFC, so consider yourself lucky. Yes, a Whole Foods would have been nice, but my guess is we'll get one of those too.
If you pick up on this tremendous Earth-shattering news, please give the blog a credit. Thanks.

Forest Hills to the Outside World

Here's an excerpt of a diary-type blog of a guy who moved to Brooklyn from Pittsburgh a few weeks ago. He had a job interview (Jet-Blue) in Forest Hills. He describes the neighborhood a bit:

"10:20am - Finding my connection to the F train in Manhattan was a breeze. I arrive in Forest Hills, Queens a little more than an hour and a half early for my interview, decide to find the building my interview is in and then go exploring. Forest Hills seems a bit more like small town than Prospect Park (Brooklyn) in that there are little shops along the street, it's not nearly as dirty, and the streets are tree lined. All the blues and greens stand out it all looks sort of quaint, I suppose."

If you read the rest of the blog, you'll see he's pretty stereotypical of a young person moving to NYC. Backburner would love a guy like this to move to Forest Hills. Looks like the guy wouldn't mind either.

Put Up Or Shut Up Part II

I would be out of business in six months. . .

For “Antique Lovers”; Great business opportunity with nice income. Forest Hills, Metropolitan Avenue, Busy Shopping Street, 1,700 sq.ft + full selling basement. Owner has been in business 18 years (in this location for more than 10 yr), well established customer base and supply connections. Business was featured, with great reviews in Major Publications (Lucky Magazine, Time Out NY, USA today). Time has come for the owner to pursue other interests. $140,000 (estimated inventory value) will buy you the extensive inventory, store fixtures, lease, and get you started in the great world of the Antique Business. Serious inquiries only. Call and leave a message (718) 268-1613

Saturday, May 5, 2007

Brooklyn/Queens Bike Route


The city has published the Brooklyn-Queens Greenway Guide. It takes you through a ride starting in South Brooklyn and ending in North Queens. It's looks like it's for experienced riders only, which rules me out.


It includes a nice section on Forest Park and the surrounding area (Forest Hills) starting on page 36. We're lucky to have Forest Park and this blog will promote many of the cool features (horse stables, golf course) and events throughout the summer. Stay tuned.

118-02 Queens Blvd Apartments?


Looks like the owner of 118-02 Queens Blvd is looking to change the zone of 118-02 Queens Blvd from a C4-2 to a C4-4D. C4-4D is both a commercial/residential zone so it could be either. Maximum height of 120 feet in a c4-4D. Lower in a C4-2.


However looking at the lots assisnged it might be a bigger project than one building. The lot(s) are at the Forest Hills end of QB by Kew Gardens, near that Kinkos. I'm not against it since it's a mess down there. But no medical pavillions to serve Briarwood residents without insurance please.

Anyone with any knowledge on lots and zones is welcome to comment. I don't know anything about it.

Friday, May 4, 2007

Sentenced to the Max

You might remember a few years ago, a gang of Forest Hills and Rego Park teens beat, stabbed, and killed an innocent 20 year old on Christmas night in front of the Midway. As the verdicts and sentences are coming in, they're all getting the maximum.

http://www.zwire.com/site/news.cfm?newsid=18295894&BRD=2731&PAG=461&dept_id=574907&rfi=6

Enjoy Rikers guys.

Newsday: T-Bone Sucks

http://www.amny.com/search/108572,0,6613758.venue

Here's a review of the T-Bone diner in AMNY, which is the city edition of Newsday. Verdict? The food is shit. However, they make up for it with mean old waiters.