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Image Source: Louis Armstrong House Museum

After helping Disneyland open in 1955, Cornelius Vanderbilt Wood Jr. set his sights on designing an amusement park in New York City. On June 19, 1960, Freedomland U.S.A. opened in the Bronx in front of roughly 63,000 guests. Though it closed after just five seasons due to crushing debt, “The Worlds Largest Entertainment Center” hosted some of the era’s biggest talent, including Chubby Checker, Tony Bennett and Queens resident Louis Armstrong.

Today, the Louis Armstrong House Museum opens up its collection of previously unseen photographs of Satchmo and his integrated band at Freedomland, the current site of Co-op City. The images paint an intimate portrait of the living legend on stage and off during the turbulent early 1960s, when the Civil Rights Movement, Cold War and Vietnam Conflict were growing.

Louis Armstrong House  Museum
34-56 107th Street, Corona
Saturday, December 1 (exhibit runs until May 1, 2013)
noon – 5pm | $7 students/seniors/children; $10 adults

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The countdown for Labor Day is on and we’ve got three weeks to wear white pants and flip flops and cut out of the office early on Friday afternoons. While New Yorkers everywhere mourn the disappearance of Water Taxi Beach at Hunter’s Point, we’ve still got the Rockaways for sand and surf. Anywhere around the borough you happen to be, you can find plenty of casual summer fare, perfect for hot days and nights, to keep that feeling of summer going right up to the end.

Image source: karlnorling on Flickr

There’s been a lot of happy buzz about Motorboat & the Big Banana, located at the Rockaway Beach Club at the Boardwalk. A venture of Brooklyn’s Vinegar Hill House’s Jean Adamson and Lindsay Robinson, who came from Diner (also in Brooklyn), it’s a low-brow fry shack that serves up very high quality grub (and check out this video of their food).