Astoria Park Pool diving pool and more in the QNYC Evening Edition for Tuesday February 5, 2013

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    The Astoria Park Pool diving pool info meeting is happening soon

    Curious about what’s up with the plan to make the currently defunct Astoria Park Pool diving pool into an outdoor amphitheater? Attend the informational meeting on Wednesday, February 20 from 6:30-8:30pm at the Astoria World Manor, 25-22 Astoria Blvd (GMAP). Folks from the Parks Dept will be there to share the schematic design for the proposed performance space. It’s a pretty exciting prospect, to have the diving pool spot serve as something that could benefit the entire community; right now it just sits there, attracting leaves, bugs, and feral cats.

    You can gamble in NY State at age 18… but perhaps not for long

    NY1 reports that Assemblyman Philip Goldfeder and Senator Joseph Addabbo have proposed in a bill that the minimum gambling age be raised from 18 to 21. Both of these lawmakers oversee districts that include the Resorts World Casino at Aqueduct Racetrack. Goldfeder says he is, “concerned after spotting gamblers under 21 at Resorts World, which is near several schools.”

    Old Prague in Astoria, Queens

    Old Prague has arrived… in the form of a bar by the same name. Thanks to consummate beer lover tastoriaqueens for the info and rundown. This location on 31st Street, the old Zlata Praha restaurant that was closed for like forever (GMAP), has been transformed into a cozy, homey Czech bar with lots of dark wood, delicious Czech beer on tap, plenty of TVs, and future offerings in the plans of homestyle Czech food and espresso. We look forward to drinking (and later, eating) there very soon.

    Will big box stores find their way to Dutch Kills

    Dutch Kills is known as a bit of a sleepy part of LIC, and home to many hotels, but in the near future big box retailers might also be finding their way there, too. Right now, this sort of retail is mainly found along Northern Blvd in LIC (think Home Depot, Michaels, etc), but there is a huge property on 21st Street near 39th Ave – 100,000 square feet’s worth – that could be come home to a variety of chain retailers. This is according to Benjamin Fox, executive vice president of retail leasing with Massey Knakal (who is exclusively marketing the property). MK would love to secure a long-term net lease of $1.5 million. There is a warehouse building on the property – which housed a Staples some time ago – but that is only 16,000 square feet, so there’s lots of extra space to work with (some smaller buildings would likely be razed). The developers are considering businesses like supermarkets, fashion retailers, automobile dealerships, and storage companies, among others, and they are open to splitting up the lot for the right mix of businesses; zoning rules are on their side for this. We’ll keep an eye on it.

    Art & Solitude in LIC

    This is a thoughtful video of artist Angélique Chandy, who makes art in LIC. We love the sights of the neighborhood that she incorporates into the video, some magnificent and some quite ordinary. About the art featured in the video:

    This video is dedicated to people with albinism experiencing separateness and social isolation. It was inspired by the process of painting my colleague Diandra Forrest, an African American with albinism.

    [vimeo http://vimeo.com/57386833]

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