Dear Lorraine:
Just received my Juniper Berry – Absolutely Beautiful. Your dedication to the young fireman whom we lost as well as our beloved Dick Schick who was loved by all, the article on the trees, the whole book!! Keep it up! Enclosing my dues for 1999-2000. Sorry I’m late, nursing a nasty cold.

Love and prayers,
May Kelly

Editors note: thanks for your kind words, sure hope your nasty cold is gone!

To the editor:
Having lived my entire life on Caldwell Avenue in Maspeth, I want to tell you how much I enjoyed reading the article “My Maspeth Memories.” It was wonderful strolling down memory lane.

Many thanks to Mr. Vincent Branigan for writing a great story and to the Berry for publishing it.

C. Hoffman
Maspeth, N.Y.

Again I am requesting a tree. Asked for one when my last check for dues was due. If there is any reason why we have not gotten one in the past 2 years?

Thanking you in advance for your attention,

Paul Kucan

Editors note: There is a very long wait for trees, unfortunately. When one is available, it will be planted right in front of your house. Thank you for your patience.

To the Editor:

Please renew our subscription to the wonderful Juniper

Berry and membership to the Juniper Park Civic Association.

As long time residents of this area, we appreciate the work you are doing to keep our neighborhood in tip-top shape.

Thank you,
Rosalyn Becker

Editor-Juniper Berry:
I was born in Middle Village on December 21,1925 just at the start of the great depression. We lived at 111 Wayne Street, now called 67th Drive. I can still hear the clanging of the firehouse bell coming from the block behind us. The streets were unpaved and we were surrounded by dairy farms mostly owned by Jews.

The Village at that time was mostly Jewish and Italian with a smattering of German, Irish and other ethnic groups. I attended P.S. 87 and can still remember the names of many of my teachers. Most of the relatives on my mother’s side also lived in the Village. Every family struggled to survive and survive we did. It was a town of total peace and harmony. How I loved it! I still do!

In 1939 we moved to the other side of Middle Village to a lovely brick attached one family home on Penelope Avenue and lived there with my family until I got married.Every so often I go to visit a cousin, who still lives in the Village and we go on a walking tour of that great town. You might say this is an effort on my part to recapture something that continues to elude me – the carefree life of a child growing up in a wonderful environment. It’s impossible to achieve, but, what fun it is trying. We search for familiar faces. We try to identify houses with original owner's’ names – many times to no avail. But, in general we see a nicer Village. Things have really improved! I’m proud of that town.

With all of that as a preamble, how do I get on your mailing list? Of course I will gladly pay for whatever the subscription cost may be and, while I don’t live in Middle Village, my heart is still there.

Respectfully yours,
Matthew Ciancimino
Bricktown, N.J. 08724

Editors note: Thank you for the kind words. You echo many of the thoughts of long time residents of Middle Village. To receive our Juniper Berry just send a check for $l4 to our organization.

To Rosemarie Gray:
Just had to let you know how much I enjoyed your article in the Juniper Berry – – boy did that bring back memories. I remember every place you mentioned. The trolley car – – how we pushed and shoved to get in to get to Newtown High School and back. The Maspeth movies. My mother and I went there three times a week. And, I went there three times a week. And, I do remember that crazy lady with the flash light when Jack and I would go to Saturday matinee. Stokes, Ben’s Bargain Store, etc.,etc.

I sure hit them all. Because of my asthma I don’t get down the avenue much. When I do I still expect to run into your mom. I know you can’t go back but I do wish you could go down there now without worrying if you were going to get kidded.

It was nice going back with you and I thank you for that.
Hope you can read this letter. The medicine I’m taking makes me a little shaky.

Hope your holidays were good and the New Year Happy and Healthy.

My love to Gene,
Irene Peterson
Maspeth, N.Y.

Dear Editor Holden:
When I began campaigning for State Assembly, one of the first issues I took on concerned the building of a 7-Eleven on Eliot Avenue in Middle Village. I remember standing outside with you and many members of our community, outside Southland Headquarters in Melville, Long Island. Thereafter, I wrote an article for the Juniper Berry outlining my position against the proliferation of all-night convenience stores so close to residences, schools, and houses of worship.

I take my campaign promises seriously, that is why I am proud to announce, that 1, along with my colleague State Senator Serphin Maltese, have submitted legislation which would prohibit retail establishments like a 7-Eleven from remaining open between the hours of 12:01 a.m. and 6:00 a.m., when near a residence. As part of the legislative process, I was asked to provide a general justification for this proposal.

“The proliferation of all-night convenience stores and retail mercantile establishments has escalated in recent years to a point where they are locating in densely populated residential neighborhoods. This results in serious degradation to the quality of life enjoyed by the residents of the community in which these stores are located Excessive noise, traffic, litter, crime, and pollution are issues presented by the arrival of these stores. Residents are subjected to increased dangers concerning pedestrian safety as well as increased danger of physical harm from individuals utilizing all-night establishments.“

My legislation would effectively prohibit an all-night store from staying open if they are located within 500 feet from a residence. Exemptions may be had by proper application to the governing body of the municipality, in our case I believe that this would mean the New York City Council.

I am not against stores like 7-Eleven; I find them very convenient to shop in, when I need to pick up some grocery items. However, I cannot justify this particular 7-Eleven now on Eliot Avenue because it is located on an already dangerous intersection so close to a house of worship and school. It is clearly inappropriate and unjustified in its planning.

It gave me great pleasure to work with our Senator Serphin Maltese on this legislation, because our quality of life is literally at stake. No longer can we permit these stores to locate across from our homes and schools on already dangerously overcrowded intersections. No longer should we as a society tolerate commercial entities coming into our densely populated residential communities on an “as of right” basis. No longer will we have to put up with convenience stores open all-night with their attendant noise, crime, traffic, and pollution. Its time we fought back, and I believe that you put me in office to do just that. I urge you to write to each and every New York State Senator and Assembly Member as well as the Governor and demand that they support the Cohen/Maltese legislation. The Assembly Bill Number is A6905/99 and the Senate Bill Number is S3726/99. When you write to the Governor, please remind him that he did speak before the Juniper Park Civic Association and thus should support our community’s interests.

Interestingly enough, not long after I submitted this legislation, I received a phone call asking me to meet with representatives of the Southland Corporation. I met with them and I told these individuals in no uncertain terms that Eliot Avenue was unsuited to this type of business, and I warned them that the community is organizing for a possible boycott of this location. I went into the history of the protest against this site, with special attention to our demonstration in Long Island, and the many meetings we had at the Juniper Park Civic Association. I was informed that there would now be an open dialogue between Southland and our community representatives to address neighborhood concerns. I hope that this comes to pass and I believe that it is regrettable that Southland chose not to come to the table before now.

Unfortunately, the current 7-Eleven on Eliot Avenue would be unaffected by this new proposal, so I want to join with Juniper Park Civic Association President Bob Holden and call for a boycott of the 7-Eleven, if Southland does not meet with us to listen to our grievances, and then act to address them. I would then urge all Middle Village residents not to patronize this establishment, so as to demonstrate our economic power.

Michael Cohen
Assembly Member

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