Sunday, June 26, 2016

Happy Pride Day!

We had a great time at the Dolly Parton concert last night at the Stadium. I realized it was my 6th concert at the Stadium since music returned there on August 28, 2013: Mumford (2013); James Taylor (2015); New York Pops (twice) (2015); Disclosure (2016) and now Dolly (2016).

Anyway, Dolly put on a great show, I'm sure anyone who attended would agree. She's really amazing.

And, this pic of a couple of rather enthusiastic Dolly fans at the concert last night also gave me a fresh new Gay Pride Day photo to use on the blog! It will battle the Gay Imperial Storm Trooper on this website each year going forward! (I also included that one below for good measure.)

Happy Pride Day everyone!

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Target Responds

I received an email from a Target spokesperson regarding my post the other day about the bricking over of the tree pits on the sidewalk in front of the store:
Prior to Target signing our lease with Muss Development, the NYC Parks Department removed dead trees in July 2015 from the sidewalk area at 7000 Austin Street. Since signing the lease, Muss Development and Target have worked with the city and paid to have the tree stumps ground and sidewalks temporarily bricked over so there wasn’t a tripping hazard. We understand the NYC Parks Department will replace the trees at a future date. I’d suggest that you contact the NYC Parks Department to learn about their plans for this space.

We look forward to working with the city and local community to maintain the green space outside our new Forest Hills, Queens store, scheduled to open July 20, 2016.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Mumford & Sons Concert Pics

Some photos from Mumford's return to Forest Hills Stadium. These are from the second show on June 17th Friday night, courtesy of Kevin Hung. Thanks Kevin!

Marcus Mumford ran through the crowd!

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Disclosure at Forest Hills Stadium

Some pics I took at this awesome concert last night. Remember to send your concert photos in to and I'll post the best ones. So far, I don't have any from the Mumford shows! Come on people!! Don't let me down!!

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Waaay Off Target

Post Update: I just wanted to post an update to my original comments below. I should clarify that when I wrote the post I assumed that Target had no permission to do this to the sidewalk in front of its new store. But, upon discussing it with others, I should amend this post to say that I have no information supporting that assumption. While I am not familiar with cases where a business has received permission to alter the sidewalk in front of its store, until I know for sure I should not jump to the conclusion, and nor should any readers, that Target acted without receiving permission from the City. If Target took this action after getting the OK from the City, then that changes everything—and my issue would be with the City granting that permission. Also, I objected to this based on the photos I saw. As a neighborhood blogger, I should and will visit the site myself and see if there is any worthwhile reason for this construction. It just could be that Target absolutely needed this part of the sidewalk unobstructed in order to conduct its business, for example. I view Target as an excellent addition to our neighborhood—one that will provide a lot of easy access to a wide assortment of products we probably don't currently have in Central Forest Hills, so I want to be as fair as possible to this new store. I think my original post was a little hasty and unfair until we know the full story.

We have a history on Austin Street of builders cementing over these tree pits, even cementing over LIVING TREES believe it or not (hey, it happened at the still-in-limbo construction site next to the Bareburger), so forgive me for being a little, perhaps, over-sensitive to this issue. 

This is truly bizarre behavior for a business just entering our neighborhood and, I'm sorry to say, is the height of corporate arrogance. The squares you see in the sidewalk below used to be home to beautiful trees, something we citizens of New York City can always use more of, not less of. The soon-to-open Target apparently took it upon itself to just brick these spots over to fit with their new store's design. They don't own the sidewalk, and they certainly have no right to assume we will be ok with them taking away the precious spaces we have reserved for our sidewalk trees. It's disgraceful behavior which I hope was the result of just an oversight between Target and the builders of its new store and not actually planned. In any case, it needs to be rectified immediately. (It also makes their co-retailer, Starbucks, look very, very bad.)
Thanks to Michael Perlman for the photos.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Dramatic Act of Subway Heroism

During such a difficult week, this story will hopefully lift your spirits. It occurred Friday at the City Hall R train station when a man collapsed onto the tracks and in seconds several bystanders jumped onto the tracks to rescue him from the oncoming train while others in the station all sprang into action to help in different ways.

You can read the full story here: In a Race to Save a Man on the Tracks, a Reminder of What’s Good in the World