Thursday, August 29, 2013

My Favorite Concert Pic

There's been a ton of pics of last night's Mumford and Sons concert but I have to say, I think this one, shared by @charrie_t tonight on Twitter, has to be my absolute favorite so far!

Filming in The Gardens Tonight

Thanks to Patrick for sending in this cool shot of some filming in The Gardens tonight on Greenway North just east of Ascan. He says it looked like a large production. There was a large food truck and several trailers along the greenway. All I heard is that Elementary was filming around there this week, and also maybe Blue Bloods? Anyone know anything else?

Post Show Pics

Some folks have expressed an interest in what FoHi was like post-concert last night. Here's some pics I took as we left the show. From what I saw, Station House and Banter seemed to be particularly popular spots for the concert-goers...

Some More Mumford Pics

I'll be posting 'em throughout the day...

George caught some of the building excitement pre-show around Station Square and concert-goers arriving on the LIRR...

Some pics from Rego Parker (is that how you say it?) Lisa:

Elan sent in this really nice shot when things were just getting going...

And this shot from Manny really makes you feel the magnitude of the crowd. Funny how the photos somehow make the crowd seem even bigger than it really was. It was big, but this makes it look like an endless sea of people!

These great shots are courtesy of @harrydelpain who was in the third row...

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Mumford Concert Pics

Just a few pics from the amazing concert tonight. I'll post more tomorrow, probably in the afternoon some time. Was a great night...

And some of the press coverage:

Wall St. Journal: Mumford & Sons perform at Forest Hills reopening

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

New Stadium Entrance

Thanks to Manny for sending in this cool pic he took tonight of the new Tennis Stadium entrance, all decked out for the concert Wednesday night...

Monday, August 26, 2013

Restaurants Preparing For Extra Visitors

The Mumford & Sons Concert Wednesday will probably bring the most visitors to our neighborhood since the last concert was held at our Stadium some 16 years ago. Yes, local politicians, see all those empty storefronts along Austin Street? You bear some of the responsibility for that for not pushing for our beautiful Stadium to be utilized for all of these 16 wasted years; years when struggling local businesses really could have used the help. Yes, you should be ashamed of yourselves. Seriously ashamed. And the same goes for local residents who wanted all events at the Stadium squelched. What could be better for your quality of life here in Forest Hills than having a vibrant local shopping district with awesome restaurants and upscale stores, instead of sad, empty storefronts?

As proof of what I'm saying, local businesses are already embracing the large volume of visitors expected to stroll down Austin Street this Wednesday evening both before and after the concert.

One of my favorite new restaurants, Banter, will be having live music of its own after the concert ends around 10 p.m., and Jack & Nellie’s plans to open a little earlier that day for the pre-show crowd. And those are just the ones I know about. If you know of others, comment about them below.

The concert's organizers have really been handling this just fantastically by the way. They understand how much money events like these at the Stadium can bring to our local businesses, a shopping area that could most definitely use a good shot in the arm. (Things have improved, but hey, we're still all recovering from the Depression, aren't we?) So in the letter accompanying tickets to Mumford, the organizers add: "We encourage you to visit local restaurants and shops before and after the show, and explore Forest Hills."

This is truly a great week to be a Forest Hills resident. I hope everyone enjoys what will truly be a memorable time for our thriving New York City neighborhood!

Today's Daily News Story About the Stadium

Tennis stadium, home to greats like Arthur Ashe, the Beatles and Bob Dylan, now will host Mumford & Sons
Forest Hills Tennis Stadium is on the backswing.
The long-closed venue, which brought acts including the Beatles, Bob Dylan and Barbra Streisand to Queens in the ’60s and ’70s, will host its first concert in 16 years when Mumford & Sons take the stage on Wednesday.
The once-legendary venue lay fallow for over a decade, leaving it a gnarled pit of spiraling weeds and chipped stones that promoter Mike Luba described as “a crumbling mess” when he visited six months ago. Yet he saw in it “a priceless jewel.”

This Week's Local Movie/TV Shoots

The television show Elementary is filming in The Gardens Tuesday, reports @AmandaKohut on Twitter. And Blue Bloods is also filming in these parts this week, she says, but isn't sure of the date.

How ironic. I wonder if we Time Warner subscribers will ever get to see these episodes filmed right here in our own backyards given that they're shown on the forbidden network known as CBS.

More Reader Pics

Some more photos readers sent in...
Stephen sent in this photo of  last week's Jazz Thursday performance, "I attended tonight's Cheryl Pepsii Riley concert on 70th Road. It was a fantastic show with wall to wall attendance! Glad the weather held up."

And speaking of performances, another reader sent in this pic of the Tennis Stadium, all spruced up and just about ready for Mumford this Wednesday eve...

Saturday, August 24, 2013

More on Overnight Ruckus

Based on this report on DNAinfo it appears that all of the commotion that awoke residents early Thursday morning near Metropolitan Avenue, with police helicopters, etc. was probably about the burglaries of these two businesses and not about a robbery at the Chase Bank as some readers had suspected:  Two Forest Hills Restaurants Burglarized on the Same Night Still a mystery is what caused the overturned car nearby that night as well.

In any case, these break-ins on Metropolitan Ave. reveal a crime wave in the portion of Forest Hills between Austin Street and Metropolitan Ave. that unfortunately continues...

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Overnight Action: Crash and Bank Robbery

I'm hearing from different folks that the overnight hours were particularly busy locally, especially in the area around the Gardens and Metropolitan Ave.

Some residents report being awoken around 4 a.m. by police helicopters and I'm hearing that the Chase Bank on Metropolitan Ave. at the corner of 70th Ave. may have been robbed around that time.

Also overnight, a car overturned on Juno St., near 69th. But remarkably everyone was reportedly ok. I have no idea at this time if the two incidents are connected in any way.

The photo below was tweeted by @tarakinkead

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Kubrick Film Shoot Photos

Some pics sent in to me of the film being shot in the Gardens yesterday. The movie is about the life of legendary director Stanley Kubrick. You can find more info about the film, and the future plans for the Tea Garden where it is being filmed, on
Century-Old Hidden Forest Hills Garden Gets Spruced Up For Movie Shoot

Actress Bella Heathcote at yesterday's shoot in The Gardens.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Tea Garden Mystery Solved!

A reader cleared up the mysterious renovation going on at the historic Tea Garden, in back of the Forest Hills Inn. I'm told it is for a movie shoot there starting Tuesday about legendary film director Stanley Kubrick. They have transformed the Tea Garden into Oktoberfest in 1957 Munich, Germany for the shoot. Here are some photos. I'm working on getting the name of the movie, but so far no luck. If anyone knows, please let me know (Kubrick was/is one of my favorite all-time directors, so I'm quite excited about this!)

Some Reader Pics

Steve spotted one of them fancy new "outer borough" green cabs roaring down Queens Blvd... By the way, don't get me started on this one. Personally, I don't quite get it. I think the boundaries between Manhattan and the "outer boroughs" are quickly blurring and I predict they will eventually be completely erased (maybe not in my lifetime, but eventually ;) ...  So, do we really need our own special cabs? I guess, probably? For now anyway? Discuss, or not...

And Linda snapped this pic of what she said was a "beautiful night for some Jazz" last Thursday eve, on our Restaurant Row during our summer jazz nights...

As always, thanks guys for sending in your pics and keep 'em coming!

Latest Views of Aston

Taken over the past several days...

Front (Queens Blvd. Side)

Side (71st Road Side)

Tea Garden Renovations

@AmandaKohut tweeted this pic yesterday of renovations taking place at the historic Tea Garden, located behind the Forest Hills Inn.  If anyone knows what they plan to do with this beautiful space, can you please let us know by either emailing us or commenting below?

Sunday, August 18, 2013

More News on H&M

It's been a rumor for the past couple of weeks that H&M was opening on Austin St., in the space being renovated near Bareburger. Then, this morning @DavidSchantz tweeted that it was in fact going to happen and he tells me it is confirmed.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Opening Soon in Forest Hills: The Grill

A reader sent in this photo of what will be going into the space formerly occupied by Liang's chinese restaurant on Restaurant Row (70th Road). I am thoroughly intrigued and am hoping this is a place that serves up tasty platters of falafel and kabobs, but we will see. "Mediterranean" and "Grill" can mean a lot of different things...

Stadium Preparations Continue

A reader sent in these new photos of the preparations continuing at the Stadium for the Mumford concert in two weeks. He adds:
"Tremendous progress on the Stadium renovation. It appears most of the rusty railings have been sanded and painted blue along with patch up of the cement columns. Also, the new entrance has been paved and a permanent gate."

Monday, August 12, 2013

Laytner's Closing

As others have already commented, Laytner's on Austin now has a For Rent sign in the window. A reader emailed a couple of weeks ago that they were closing. Personally, I feel it was a nice store but I may have bought like one thing there the entire time they were open. To me it was a missed opportunity. I was hoping for more of a Bed, Bath & Beyond type housewares store. Instead, they never seemed to have the little things for the house I needed, that I always am able to get at B,B&B. Anyway, their leaving opens up a pretty big retail space on Austin St., with a large lower level no less if I recall.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

The End of the Suburbs - This Weekend on Book TV

Those of you who read this blog regularly, know that one of my least favorite things in this world is suburbia. ... Well, maybe you don't know that, but there, I just told you. So, this kinda caught my eye:

Saturday 10 pm,
Sunday 9 pm & Midnight ET

 Weekly interview of a nonfiction author by a guest host who shares an area of expertise or interest.

Leigh Gallagher, The End of the Suburbs: Where the American Dream is Moving, interviewed by Rich Benjamin, author ofSearching for Whitopia
Fortune assistant managing editor Leigh Gallagher argues that the recession and crash of the housing market have produced a permanent change in America's landscape: the rapid disappearance of the suburbs. The decline in marriage and birthrates, the rise of gasoline prices and liveliness of city life for young singles have all combined to push more of the population to make their homes inside the city limits. Ms. Gallagher discusses this growing trend with the author of Searching for Whitopia, Rich Benjamin

You can watch it online, if you can't find it on your TV, or if Time Warner decided to go up and ban that channel too:
Book TV Online!
Did you know you can watch Book TV streaming all weekend long on You can also search our archives for footage of your favorite authors and events.