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East Elmhurst

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St. Michael’s Cemetery in East Elmhurst has a probably–it is running out of space. And since there’s no reason to think people are going to stop dying, they need to get their hands on more land. One small plot of land that cemetery leaders have targeted is an irregularly-shaped parcel of unloved city park land known as St. Michael’s Park. The 4-acre plot is located at the Northeast corner of the cemetery, up against the BQE just south of Astoria Boulevard. Earlier this week, the blog Queens Crap posted a copy of a bill that would authorize the transfer of the park in return for a similar-sized property elsewhere in the borough. According to a Daily News story yesterday, local politicians support the swap. “I hope we can take a local eyesore, put it to productive use and find replacement land that can be used as a park,” said state Sen. Michael Gianaris. “It’s an abandoned (and) overgrown area. People throw their garbage over the fence.” Are you okay with the plan?
Queens Cemetery’s Attempts to Expand on Park Land in Limbo [NY Daily News]

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Designed by William Delano and built in 1939, LaGuardia Airport’s Marine Air Terminal is one of two passenger terminals remaining from the first generation of USA air travel, dating back to the airport’s first days. (The other belongs to American Airlines.) LGA opened in October 1939 and the Marine Air Terminal was dedicated the following March, serving Pan American’s magnificent Yankee Clipper aircraft, seaplanes known as “flying boats.” Today it serves commuter airlines including the Delta Water Shuttle (a ferry service), air taxis, and a private weather station.

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Image Source: LastFM

It all adds up. Jazz is the USA’s greatest contribution to music. Louis Armstrong is the greatest contributor to the genre. And Queens is the best place in the world for a jazz celebration. On April 30, the Louis Armstrong House Museum and the Jazz Journalists Association will hold a free, fun, food-filled festivity feting International Jazz Day at the Langston Hughes Community Library & Cultural Center in Corona. The program — presented by official Armstrong archivist Ricky Riccardi and Dan Morgenstern, director of the Institute of Jazz Studies at Rutgers University — will include the public premier of a newly discovered recording by Armstrong at Freedomland, a fabled Bronx amusement park in 1961. Then, the Jazz Journalists Association will toast Satchmo at a soul food reception. Some might attend for the music. Others might attend for the food. But all will enjoy themselves.

International Jazz Day Celebration
Langston Hughes Library
100-01 Northern Boulevard, Corona
Tuesday, April 30th, 2013
2pm – 5pm | Free

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The Riker Home in East Elmhurst was once used to house soldiers during the Revolutionary War. “This was my little girl’s storybook dream come true,” says Marion Duckwoirth Smith, the homes owner.

The home, built by Abraham Riker in 1654, is the Lent-Riker-Smith homestead. It has seen only four owners in its incredible 350-year existence, and stands today as piece of history, otherwise unrecognized next to the LaGuardia Airport’s Marine Air Terminal on the south side of the intersection of Hazen Street and 19th Avenue (GMAP) in East Elmhurst.

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Here is a roundup of properties we’ve featured on QueensNYC this week – a couple of condos, a co-op, and a house in LIC, Woodside, and East Elmhurst.

5-19 Borden Ave., #2A, Long Island City, NY 11101 (GMAP) – This 2 bed/2 bath condo in the Murano building is priced at $895,000. Some of the sweet aspects of this unit include north and west exposures, a 98 square foot balcony, and this soaking tub in the bathroom. The Murano is also a “green building,” with the use of eco-friendly building materials and energy efficient appliances. The building is convenient to the Vernon-Jackson 7 stop on the subway (one stop from Grand Central), the Hunters Point LIRR, and the East River Ferry. It is also close to the LIE and the Queens Midtown Tunnel.

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Image source: WSJ – the LaGuardia Mariott Hotel, where the awards were given

The Queens Gazette reports that last Thursday, January 17, the Queens Chamber of Commerce held their annual Building Awards and Reception at the LaGuardia Mariott Hotel (which we recently told you had been sold for $22 million – GMAP); they’ve been doing this since 1926. The Chamber of Commerce honored property owners, architects, and builders; 100 entries were submitted and out of that 21 winners were chosen.

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Image source: Wikimedia Commons – Langston Hughes in 1936

On Saturday, February 9, the Queens Library’s Langston Hughes Community Library and Cultural Center in Corona-East Elmhurst (100-01 Northern Boulevard – GMAP) will be nationally recognized at a Literary Landmark by United for Libraries. Each year the library holds a Langston Hughes Celebration and it will be during that event – the 28th annual – that a plaque will be placed at the library. All are welcome and admission is free!

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Image source: WSJ

The Wall Street Journal reported on a multi-million dollar sale of the 438-room NY LaGuardia Airport Mariott hotel (102-05 Ditmars Boulevard – GMAP) in East Elmhurst (about a mile north of that block-sized property that recently came on the market for $21 million near Citi Field). The sale was completed last Friday for $21 million, apparently one third of the price it held in 2007.

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Image Source: Quintet of the Americas

Five musicians. Three concerts. Two days. One borough. The Quintet of the Americas will perform the Crystal Winter series in Jackson Heights, East Elmhurst and Bayside on January 15 and 16. The multi-faceted group will play seasonal songs from around the world in front of projected images of crystals, snowflakes, winter scenes and Vincent Van Gogh’s painting Starry Night. Expect Van Gogh-inspired jam sessions and audience members jumping the stage to join in with bells, jingling keys and water glasses. The band will also do golden oldies such as Sammy Cahn’s “Let It Snow” and “Silver Bells,” an arrangement of Sergie Prokofiev’s Troika from Lt. Kije Suite.

Salvation Army Temple
86-07 35th Avenue, Jackson Heights
Tuesday, January 15
11am – 12:30pm | Free

Elm-Cor Senior Center
98-19 Astoria Boulevard, East Elmhurst
Tuesday, January 15
1:30pm – 3pm | Free

Catholic Charities Bayside Senior Center
221-15 Horace Harding Boulevard, Bayside
Wednesday, January 16
12:15pm – 1:45pm | Free