December 2014 Juniper Berry Magazine - JuniperCivic.com
Serving Middle Village and Maspeth since 1938.
December Juniper Berry Magazine

December 2014 Juniper Berry

The Juniper Berry magazine has a rich tradition in the communities of Middle Village, Maspeth and Elmhurst. It was first published in 1938. The quarterly magazine is an all-volunteer effort and contains articles on crime prevention, neighborhood issues, meeting reports and notices, neighborhood history and photographs, guest articles, editorials and more.

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things that are dumb: SIGNS OUT OF CONTROL

things that are dumb: SIGNS OUT OF CONTROL

This Cash for Cars type sign was pasted onto the back of a DOT truck route sign at 69th Street and Grand Avenue. The condition was called into 311 on September 21. The following day, we received a response to the 311 complaint: "The Department of Transportation inspected the condition and opened a repair order.

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things that are dumb: DE BLASIO WORSENS HOMELESS CRISIS

things that are dumb: DE BLASIO WORSENS HOMELESS CRISIS

An October editorial in the Daily News shed more light on the role that the de Blasio administration has played in worsening NYC's homeless situation.

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things that are dumb: Tree needs a Trim

things that are dumb: Tree needs a Trim

A city street tree located in front of the Duane Reade on Grand Avenue was noticed to be pretty shaggy. In fact, upon close examination it was discovered that the tree pit containing the gingko that was planted by the city had been encroached upon by an invasive tree of heaven.

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things that are dumb: CROWLEY'S BRIGHT IDEA

things that are dumb: CROWLEY'S BRIGHT IDEA

Council Member Elizabeth Crowley introduced a bill in October that would require the Department of Homeless Services to show videos and provide pamphlets regarding domestic violence against partners and children.

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things that are dumb: TRAIN RUNS OUT OF TRACK IN MASPETH

things that are dumb: TRAIN RUNS OUT OF TRACK IN MASPETH

A New York & Atlantic locomotive literally ran out of track in Maspeth in early October. No one can seem to explain why the rail abruptly ended near 60th Lane, but the conductor obviously was unaware of the condition.

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things that are dumb: IT'S A BOX, NOT A BUILDING!

things that are dumb: IT'S A BOX, NOT A BUILDING!

This traffic control box near 69th Place along the westbound LIE service road had been tagged with graffiti this summer and this problem was reported to 311. The unfortunate response that was received: "Your Service Request was closed.

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things that are dumb: TO PLANT OR NOT TO PLANT, THAT IS THE QUESTION

things that are dumb: TO PLANT OR NOT TO PLANT, THAT IS THE QUESTION

Many homeowners in the quest to find more parking for their cars have taken to paving over their front yards, sideyards and increasing curb cuts.

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things that are dumb: WATCH OUT FOR GARBAGE TRUCKS

things that are dumb: WATCH OUT FOR GARBAGE TRUCKS

Comptroller Scott Stringer took a look at lawsuits filed by pedestrians against the city over the past 8 years. Filing against the city means that a city vehicle was involved in the accident.

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things that are dumb: EXPRESSWAY PRISON WALLS

things that are dumb: EXPRESSWAY PRISON WALLS

While communities on Long Island got the designer expressway walls through their neighborhoods, Maspeth and Middle Village got the Sing-Sing prison-style version. This demonstrates exactly what the State Department of Transportation thinks of our community.

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things that are dumb: DUMB PARKING ON CALDWELL

things that are dumb: DUMB PARKING ON CALDWELL

A few residents have gotten the bright idea to park on Caldwell Avenue at its narrowest point, between 71st and 72nd Streets.

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things that are dumb: YOUR TAX DOLLARS AT WORK

things that are dumb: YOUR TAX DOLLARS AT WORK

The Department of Transportation has the following passage on its "CityBench" website: "DOT is installing attractive and durable benches around the city, particularly at bus stops, retail corridors, and in areas with high concentrations of senior citizens. These benches will make streets more comfortable for transit riders and pedestrians, especially for those who are older and disabled.

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BERRY BITS: Easier to Get Eyesores Removed

BERRY BITS: Easier to Get Eyesores Removed

The City Council passed a bill on November 13th that allows the Department of Sanitation to more quickly and easily remove illegal clothing donation bins.

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BERRY BITS: State and City reverse course on Ridgewood Reservoir plans

BERRY BITS: State and City reverse course on Ridgewood Reservoir plans

Just after we went to press on our September 2014 issue, word came that the Commissioner of the State Department of Environmental Protection had responded to a joint letter sent to him by several elected officials regarding the preservation of the Ridgewood Reservoir.

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BERRY BITS: Not much of an improvement

BERRY BITS: Not much of an improvement

The ratty old newsstand formerly at the corner of Fresh Pond Road & Metropolitan Avenue has been gone for almost a year, but there has been recent activity at the corner.

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BERRY BITS: NYC buildings department  hosts Homeowners Night

BERRY BITS: NYC buildings department hosts Homeowners Night

Before you make any alterations to your home, it's a good idea to consult with a buildings department official.

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BERRY BITS: St. John's Queens Hospital conversion almost complete

BERRY BITS: St. John's Queens Hospital conversion almost complete

Several people have inquired about the status of St. John's Queens Hospital. Some were concerned that it might also be converted into a homeless shelter since the project has been stalled for a while and the property changed hands a couple of times since the hospital closed in 2009.

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BERRY BITS: Movement on Quiet Skies

BERRY BITS: Movement on Quiet Skies

A well-attended rally against airplane noise was held in September at Cunningham Park. Elected officials and civic leaders from across the borough were present.

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BERRY BITS: Poison in the park?

BERRY BITS: Poison in the park?

News reports in late September alleged that there were incidents of dogs suffering from antifreeze poisoning after walking in Juniper Valley Park.

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BERRY BITS: Cross Harbor Draft Environmental Impact Statement released

BERRY BITS: Cross Harbor Draft Environmental Impact Statement released

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey (PANYNJ) has announced the release of the Tier 1 Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for the Cross Harbor Freight Program (CHFP).

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Bad behavior outside Knockdown Center event

Bad behavior outside Knockdown Center event

On Veterans Day, the Knockdown Center hosted a techno concert sponsored by Honda Stage.

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BERRY BITS: Mailboxes, relay boxes  & fireboxes ‒ oh my!

BERRY BITS: Mailboxes, relay boxes & fireboxes ‒ oh my!

A graffiti cleanup of government-owned street furniture in Maspeth and Middle Village was conducted on November 22nd.

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BERRY BITS: Candid Camera at Silver Barn

BERRY BITS: Candid Camera at Silver Barn

This past September, the TV show Candid Camera filmed three segments at the checkout area of Silver Barn Farms.

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BERRY BITS: MV 5th grader takes center stage in film

BERRY BITS: MV 5th grader takes center stage in film

The recent film release Once Upon a Time in Queens was shot in Middle Village, Long Island City and Ridgewood, at many familiar venues including Juniper Valley Park and Village Gourmet Deli.

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Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

Comments or Opinions? Send to: Letters/Juniper Berry PO Box 790275, Middle Village, NY 11379 or e-mail: letters@junipercivic.com

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BERRY BITS: Safe Streets to School project complete

BERRY BITS: Safe Streets to School project complete

The green space at 61st Street and Grand Avenue, installed as a safety precaution for pedestrians walking through the area, was completed in November.

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Sunk in Maspeth

Sunk in Maspeth

A house at 69-11 58th Road in Maspeth was evacuated on October 24th due to a partial collapse of its foundation. Residents are questioning whether the presence of sinkholes in the street near the house could have led to the cave-in.

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Our Hometown Home Brew

Our Hometown Home Brew

Looking for a locally micro brewed beer rather than something shipped in massive quantities from St. Louis? Well it doesn't get any more micro or local than Bridge and Tunnel Brewery.

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The House on 62nd Road

The House on 62nd Road

At the turn of the nineteenth century, East Williamsburg was becoming too crowded and noisy for my great grandparents, John and Rosina Landsiedel. He had emigrated from Hochspeyer, Germany, in the late 1870's and procured employment at the Bossert Lumber Company, the largest in the city of Brooklyn.

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The transformation of the Clinton Diner

The transformation of the Clinton Diner

The Clinton Diner has been a Maspeth landmark since 1935. The following was provided to us by Nick Diamantis. Nick's family has owned the diner for decades.

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Our Greatest Challenge Is Yet To Come

Our Greatest Challenge Is Yet To Come

Who is responsible for this country experiencing a steady decline in morality as well as the unmooring from the United States Constitution?

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City Homeless Shelter Plan in Disarray

City Homeless Shelter Plan in Disarray

Neighborhood Coalition Fights Back • Challenges Plan in Court In 2012 a purported "rumor" surfaced that the former factory at 78-16 Cooper Avenue in Glendale was to become a homeless shelter. This "rumor" was realized to be a reality when, in August 2013, Samaritan Village informed Community Board 5 they intended to operate a homeless shelter at the site. Research on the shelter provider and the NYC shelter system in general aroused numerous concerns in addition to concerns regarding the site itself. Concerns included, but were not limited to, the following:

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Why Choose Christ  the King High School?

Why Choose Christ the King High School?

That is a question I have been asked dozens, maybe hundreds of times. As someone who has spent three decades teaching at the school, and another four years as a student, parents and prospective students often will ask for my point of view. It is an easy question to answer.

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The Lost Community of METROPOLITAN

The Lost Community of METROPOLITAN

Have you been to Metropolitan lately? I don't mean the Avenue specifically, but the neighborhood called Metropolitan. Not sure where that is?

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Plateau Pride

Plateau Pride

Ridgewood Plateau arches undergo restoration after decades of neglect

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Florence Buchholz: A Pillar of Trinity's Sunday school

Florence Buchholz: A Pillar of Trinity's Sunday school

Being with kids was the joy of her life. Florence Buchholz simply loved kids and youths, and they loved her in return. It was two boys in her Sunday school class who gave Florence Buchholz the nickname "Flo-flo;" from then on all the other kids called her that. The youths of the church also gave her a nickname – "Aunt Florence."

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Q&A with Familiar Faces: INTERVIEW WITH  DR. MATTHEW McCARTHY  Juniper Valley Animal Hospital

Q&A with Familiar Faces: INTERVIEW WITH DR. MATTHEW McCARTHY Juniper Valley Animal Hospital

INTERVIEW WITH DR. MATTHEW McCARTHY Juniper Valley Animal Hospital The new state-of-the-art Juniper Valley Animal Hospital is slated to open next month to replace the one adjacent to it on 69th Place in Middle Village. It will be 8000 square feet and consist of two floors, five examination rooms, new equipment, separate waiting areas for dogs and cats, and other features too numerous to mention in this article. It was the intention and the vision of its founder, Dr. Matthew McCarthy to build the best veterinary hospital in Queens, and he has successfully achieved that goal with the same passion, determination, and discipline he has displayed so often when treating his patients, the many dogs and cats of our community. But it is Dr. McCarthy's veterinary skill and management acumen that has made him such a veterinary icon in our community. He treats his patients with incredible compassion and resourcefulness. His clients admire his integrity and unique style, and have the upmost trust in him with their pets, as if he were a family member. Among the many accolades, here's one from Dr. Philip Franco, the principal at Saint Margaret's School: "He saved my dog, Lucy's life. He really did. She was very sick with a temperature of 104 with pneumonia and within 24 hours he had her right back on track. He's the best!" Dr. Matthew McCarthy was born and raised in Washington Heights. He went to grammar school at Saint Elizabeth's Catholic School in Manhattan, high school at Fordham Prep., then earned a B.S. in Engineering from Fordham University and latera B.S. at Columbia University for Engineering. A few years later he studied to be a veterinarian. He currently lives in Forest Hills with his wife, two children, five cats, and one dog (his other dog, Clarence, a Weimaraner, recently passed away). The silhouettes of Clarence and his cat, Hedwig are in the logo of the JVAH.

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Our Nocturnal Neighbors

Our Nocturnal Neighbors

You may have noticed an increase in the number of skunks, opossums and raccoons seen around the neighborhood in the last few years. You would think that as the neighborhood becomes more populated with people, wildlife would be crowded out. However, the exact opposite has occurred. Skunks, opossums and raccoons have all adapted very well to the presence of humans, mainly because humans have unwittingly provided an unlimited food supply for them.

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Reflections on the Life of Albert Banke

Reflections on the Life of Albert Banke

AlbertPeterBanke – was as he told it – born on a kitchen table in New York City – during the Great Depression on April 2, 1933. The hard times of his childhood affected him throughout his life, always leading him to strive and move forward to prepare and provide a betterway for his children and grandchildren.

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We Must Rekindle the Essence of America

We Must Rekindle the Essence of America

It was never my intention to make my "essence of America" series extend into part 4, but much has happened on the geopolitical and social justice scene since the June/July edition of the Juniper Berry that requires further scrutiny into just why America as a "World Superpower" is on a steady decline. In prior articles, I mentioned several contributing factors, such as, "Corporate Greed", which is only focused on the bottom line: and "Political Narcissism", which is politicians only concerned with protecting themselves and not putting Americans first

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Organics Recycling  Program 101

Organics Recycling Program 101

What you should know about the Organics Recycling Program: In the fall of 2012, the Department of Sanitation (DSNY) began offering curbside collection of organic waste to select NYC schools, residences, and institutions. In 2013, the pilot program was codified into law by Local Law 77 of 2013, requiring DSNY to carry out the pilot through July 2015. The program is strictly voluntary.

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Killy's Korner

Killy's Korner

Send info and photos to: KillysKorner@aol.com or write: Juniper Berry PO Box 790275 Middle Village, NY 11379. The deadline for the next issue is February 15, 2015.

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Heavenly Hours: Reading  Aloud at  St.Stan's

Heavenly Hours: Reading Aloud at St.Stan's

I am sitting on one of the little wooden bench-like seats bolted onto the floor of my second-grade classroom in P.S. 72 (now Martin Luther High School) in Maspeth. It is the winter of 1954.

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BERRY HEALTH: Allergies & Asthma  Go To School

BERRY HEALTH: Allergies & Asthma Go To School

Mary had a little lamb Its fleece was white as snow And everywhere that Mary went the lamb was sure to go It followed her to school one day which was against the rule It made the child sneeze and wheeze to see a lamb at school

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NEIGHBORHOOD HALL OF SHAME: A 58 Ave Problem

NEIGHBORHOOD HALL OF SHAME: A 58 Ave Problem

Thankfully, the vast majority of property owners in Middle Village & Maspeth take pride in the appearance and well-being of our neighborhood. But a few property owners have a total disregard for the condition of their property. So we induct these properties into this month's Hall of Shame. If you see properties in disarray, call 311. And please send them to us for possible inclusion in our neighborhood hall of shame. Graffiti images on this page have been altered to not give vandals notoriety. Send to: info@junipercivic.com or mail to: Juniper Berry Eyesores, PO Box 275 Middle Village, NY 11379

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EYESORE: Another 58 Ave Problem

EYESORE: Another 58 Ave Problem

Thankfully, the vast majority of property owners in Middle Village & Maspeth take pride in the appearance and well-being of our neighborhood. But a few property owners have a total disregard for the condition of their property. So we induct these properties into this month's Hall of Shame. If you see properties in disarray, call 311. And please send them to us for possible inclusion in our neighborhood hall of shame. Graffiti images on this page have been altered to not give vandals notoriety. Send to: info@junipercivic.com or mail to: Juniper Berry Eyesores, PO Box 275 Middle Village, NY 11379

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EYESORE: 69TH LAME

EYESORE: 69TH LAME

Thankfully, the vast majority of property owners in Middle Village & Maspeth take pride in the appearance and well-being of our neighborhood. But a few property owners have a total disregard for the condition of their property. So we induct these properties into this month's Hall of Shame. If you see properties in disarray, call 311. And please send them to us for possible inclusion in our neighborhood hall of shame. Graffiti images on this page have been altered to not give vandals notoriety. Send to: info@junipercivic.com or mail to: Juniper Berry Eyesores, PO Box 275 Middle Village, NY 11379

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Our Old Dance Halls & Picnic Parks

Our Old Dance Halls & Picnic Parks

IN THE LATE 1800s picnic parks became popular for the immigrant residents of the Greater Ridgewood area who worked six days a week and needed a form of entertainment. The success of the picnic parks carried over into Maspeth and parts of Middle Village. One of the first was Clinton Park, owned and operated by DeWitt Clinton (Governor) of Maspeth

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