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The Historic Districts Council just announced its annual list of six areas of New York meriting preservation, as part of its Six to Celebrate campaign this year. Over the year, the HDC will offer hands-on assistance in a number of preservation issues, like documentation, research, zoning, landmarking, publicity, and public outreach. Here in Queens, the HDC selected the Forest Close neighborhood of Forest Hills as an area worth celebrating. Here’s what they have to say about Forest Close:

Designed in 1927 in the spirit of the garden city movement, Forest Close is a charming nook of 38 neo-Tudor houses surrounding a shared communal garden. While the Forest Close Association maintains covenants that regulate design and open space elements of the community and advises residents on design guidelines for building projects, they are now exploring other tools to better protect the area’s special character. The Association is working to engage residents and local stakeholders to promote the preservation of this lush neighborhood in Forest Hills.

The 2014 groups will be formally introduced at the Six to Celebrate Launch Party on Wednesday, January 29th, 6 to 8pm at the LGBT Community Center, 208 West 13th Street. You can get tickets here.

Photo by Michael Perlman

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How the Jehovah’s Witnesses Acquired Some of Brooklyn’s Most Insanely Valuable Properties
The Jehovah’s Witnesses — aka the Watchtower Bible and Tract Society — first came to Brooklyn in 1908, in hopes of having their sermons syndicated in newspapers alongside the writings of the borough’s most famous pastors. It was under the Watchtower’s autocratic second leader, Joseph F. Rutherford, that the religious group truly began practicing the art of Brooklyn real estate.