Winter Solstice Celebration & Tree Lighting

IMG_9523webOn Sunday, December 7, Queens BotanicalGarden, located at43-50 Main Street, Flushing, NY 11355. is hosting a winter celebration event. From 1PM to 5PM, get into the holiday spirit with an afternoon of family fun, including a winter Garden tour, botanical crafts, live musical performances and Tree Lighting Ceremony.


Event Schedule:

  • 1 to 5pm: Refreshments and treats for purchase
  • 12:30 to 4:30pm: Appearances by Santa — bring your camera!
  • 1 to 2pm: Tour the Garden in Winter
  • 2 to 4pm: Botanical craft activities (additional fee; while supplies last)
  • 3 to 3:45pm and 4:15 to 5pm: Concert by the Rough Dozen acappella group performing seasonal songs
  • 4:45 to 5pm: Tree lighting ceremony and sing-along

Parking is hard to find, so LAZ parking garage (5 min walk from Queens Botanical Garden,) is offering a special discount to QB Garden visitors. $10 for 3 hours, or $20 for the entire day!

Advocacy group calls on stricter DEP stormwater response

A coalition of over 70 local and national organizations has submitted a letter to the city calling the Flushing Creek Long Term Control Plan (LTCP) “deeply flawed, both in process and in substance.”

The Stormwater Infrastructure Matters (SWIM) Coalition, consisting of dozens of organizations dedicated to ensuring swimmable and fishable waters around New York City, believes that the city’s current long-term goals for controlling sewage aren’t stringent enough.

But according to the recent Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) decision in the Alley Creek LTCP, the city is already doing all it needs to control sewage and storm overflow, says Lawrence Levine, SWIM Steering Committee member and senior attorney in the NRDC water program.

Following the submission of the Alley Creek LTCP by DEP, the state Department of Environmental Conservation said it didn’t go far enough to reduce stormwater outfall and sewage dumping, but the city sued to support its plan. Now, the fate of all future LTCP’s hang in the balance of that lawsuit, argues Levine.

“Because that was the first one to be submitted that set the tone for everything else,” he said. “If the city wins, they’re going to get to take that same position with every other plan. If the state wins, then the city will have to do more.”

According to Levine, the Clean Water Act calls for the establishment of the highest attainable use for a water body and says that ideally, all waterways should be swimmable and fishable. But according to DEP, maintaining the status quo goes far enough.

In Flushing Bay, which will be up for LTCP review in the next two years, the current designation is non-contact recreational use, but even those who use the waterway correctly face the risk of eye infections and gastrointestinal problems.

The Empire Dragon Boat Team NYC, a team of breast cancer survivors who use the bay regularly for practice, have had several members hospitalized after contact with the filthy, sewage-rich bay waters.

SWIM member Jaime Stein wrote to DEP Commissioner Emily Lloyd called on the agency to be more transparent and welcome public input.

“It is impossible at this time for any member of the public to evaluate DEP’s proposal or its underlying analysis, as the public is merely provided a PowerPoint presentation, instead of the actual draft plan,” Stein wrote. 
“The final Hutchinson River LTCP submitted in September failed to even acknowledge the comment letter we submitted, at DEP’s invitation, following the last public meeting on that plan,” Stein added.


New Flushing business group to launch next month

In anticipation of their upcoming December launch, members of the new Greater Flushing Chamber of Commerce met with local leaders and representatives of the Flushing community to discuss their future plans.

“We have the opportunity to meet or exceed the downtown Brooklyn and downtown Manhattan business districts,” said the group’s new executive director, John Choe. “Flushing is really, in my mind, at the forefront of changing the way our local New York City economy operates.”

Choe, founding director of One Flushing, a non-profit economic development center, said he hopes by next summer there will be an outreach campaign that includes local hotels, restaurants and retail establishments.

“In Flushing, we have a multi-ethnic community, and the chamber will reflect that and will be a bridge, not only between the ethnic groups, but also between the local mom-and-pop stores and mainstream economies,” he said.

He added that the group plans on holding networking events and street fairs for the community and participating business owners, who can showcase their services.

Regina Im, from Korea TaeKwanDo at 150-80 70th Road, said she hopes the new group will find a way to help immigrant startups find the services they need to stay afloat.

“Even my parents, they are not good at English, but they are business owners and they need help,” Im said. “I want to see that this chamber is the bridge to another chamber or another financial resource so that the people and business owners here can get the same help that other business owners have.”

Peter Tu, executive director of the Flushing Chinese Business Association, said he plans on becoming a longtime partner of the new chamber, explaining that immigrant business owners need as many resources as possible to be successful.

“I hope that this helps this community work together and become more beautiful,” he said.

Councilman Peter Koo commended Choe and his team for their efforts, adding that any help is necessary in today’s market.

“We are still living in a climate of over regulation that remains challenging for many small business owners, so the Flushing Chamber will be a welcomed addition to our diverse business community,” he said.

The Greater Flushing Chamber of Commerce will hold their official launch event on Thursday, December 11, from 6 to 8 p.m. at Flushing Town Hall, located at 137-25 Northern Blvd.


Farmers Market Friday

Get fresh produce from the Farmers Market!  This Friday,  November 21, from 8:30am to 4pm on Dahlia Avenue off Main Street. The farmers accept the following benefits: SNAP/food stamps (EBT) for each $5 spent in food stamps the shopper gets $2 coupon (Health Bucks) they can use for produce; FNMP checks; WIC-VF (WIC fruit and vegetables) 

See more at:


Parking islogo-section hard to find, so LAZ parking garage (5 min walk from the Farmers Market) is offering a special discount to Farmers Market visitors. $10 for 3 hours, or $20 for the entire day!


Meet professional wrestling legend Gail Kim tonight

Tonight from 7 to 9 p.m., world-famous female wrestling champion Gail Kim will be making an appearance at The Wrestling Universe, located at 34-29 Francis Lewis Blvd.

Kim began her wrestling career in the Canadian Independent Circuit under the name La Felina, but changed her name to Gail Kim when she joined the WWE in 2002. She immediately solidified her place in the world of professional wrestling when she became the first WWE Diva to win a championship belt during her first match.

From 2005 to 2007, Kim competed in the TNA circuit, returning the the WWE after becoming the first-ever TNA Women’s Knockout Champion. She again returned to TNA in 2012, the year she was named the number one pro female wrestler in the world by Pro Wrestling Illustrated.

Tickets to her appearance at The Wrestling Universe cost $30 at the door. Included in the price is a chance to meet Gail Kim and have her sign one personal item, and two photos – one with your own camera and one with a house camera that will be posted on The Wrestling Universe’s Facebook page.

Flushing community leaders to announce new chamber of commerce tomorrow

Tomorrow at 11 a.m., Flushing’s local elected and community leaders will gather to announce the formation of a new chamber of commerce at the Chamber of Commerce Building, located at 39-01 Main St., Suite 511.

Details and information about membership and sponsorship opportunities will be provided at the launch.


The list of scheduled attendees includes:

Assemblyman Ron Kim
Peter Tu, Executive Director of the Flushing Chinese Business Association (FCBA).
Ikwhan Rim, President of the Union Street Small Business Association.
Jack Friedman, Executive Director of the Queens Chamber of Commerce.
Ellen Kodadek, Executive & Artistic Director of Flushing Town Hall.
Christopher Kui, Executive Director of Asian Americans for Equality (AAFE).
Simon Gerson, Managing Principal of Gerson Properties LLC.
Richard Siu, Chief Investment Officer, F&T Group.
Evan Jerome, Vice President of Monroe College.
James Chen, Founder of
Taehoon Kim, Owner of Regen Acupuncture.
Sal D’Aguanno, Owner of Phil & Son’s Restaurant & Pizzeria.
Alice Lee, Director of Business Development at Amerigroup.
David Steinberg, Founder of Summit Funding.
Perka Chan, Site Developer for HealthFirst.

Did you know Flushing Town Hall was built to welcome home Veterans of the Civil War?

“On a rainy day in December 1861, Union Troops marched down what is now Northern Boulevard. Due to inclement weather the community quickly bid goodbye to their troops and they steamed away to war,” says Gabrielle Hamilton, Director of Education and Public Programs at Flushing Town Hall.

“The leaders of Flushing knew they deserved better, and wanted to welcome home the Veterans of the Civil War with dignity so they immediately made plans to build Flushing Town Hall.”

Ms. Hamilton added, “It seems fitting that we once again welcome veterans to Flushing Town Hall and collect their personal stories and preserve their contributions with respect. Please join us to learn how you can collect the stories from the Veterans in your family and preserve them in the Library of Congress. Make sure your voice is heard!”

Celebrate Veterans Day on Tuesday, November 11, 2014 with a workshop that will teach visitors how to preserve the story of the Veterans in their family. Attendees will learn how to conduct interviews, collect stories and transfer their story to the Library of Congress’ American Folklife Center: Veterans History Project.

Veterans and their families, students looking for a Service Learning Project, and the general public are encouraged to attend.Parking is hard to find, so LAZ parking garage (5 min walk from Flushing Town Hall) is offering a special discount to Town Hall visitors. $10 for 3 hours, or $20 for the entire day!

*Content provided by Flushing Town Hall

SLOW DOWN! New lowered city speed limit goes into effect today

Starting today, police will begin enforcing the new 25 mph citywide speed limit.

Legislation passed last month lowered the default city speed limit from 30 mph to 25 mph. For the past 25 days, the Department of Transportation, politicians, the NYPD and others have done what they could to get the word out about the new road rules.

Today, strict enforcement of the new speed limit will begin. Unless otherwise posted, speed limits on city roads will now be 25 mph, so unless you want to be the one putting money into the City’s pockets through the pile of speeding tickets that are sure to be issued in the coming months, make sure you slow down.


Need a parking garage in Flushing, Queens? LAZ Parking offers safe, affordable monthly, daily and yearly parking. 347.398.4688 … 133-59 Roosevelt Ave. Flushing, NY 11354 (Close to Main St.)

Gladys Knight to perform at Kupferberg tonight

Gladys Knight aka the Empress of Soul is set to perform at 8 p.m. tonight at Colden Auditorium, located at 65-30 Kissena Blvd. on the Queens College campus.

During her more than 50 year career, Knight has received numerous honors throughout her career, including seven Grammy’s, a BET Lifetime Achievement Award, and a place in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame among others. Knight has produced gold-certified singles including “Neither One of Us (Wants to be the First to Say Goodbye),” “I’ve Got to Use My Imagination,” and “Best Thing to Ever Happen to Me,” the chart-topping “Midnight Train to Georgia,” and the classic “That’s What Friends are For.”

Tickets for the event range from $35 to $109.


Permanent Comfort Women exhibit on the way at QCC

Queensborough Community College (QCC) announced the construction of a permanent exhibit in honor of the Korean Comfort Women of WWII today at the Kupferberg Holocaust Center and Archives (KHRCA), located at 222-05 56th Street in Bayside.

The opening art display of the new exhibition by artist Steve Cavallo entitled, “Eulogies,” shows numerous watercolor portraits of the Korean teenage girls, forced into sexual servitude by Japanese armies in 1937.

With an estimated cost ranging from $50,000 to $80,000, the new exhibit is expected to add to the awareness of these young women and survivors by engaging the students and surrounding community.

Three years ago, KHRCA executive director Arthur Flug began working with The Korean American Association of Greater New York (KAAGNY) to further the education surrounding the issue. Since then, they have worked together to create a partnership between the two communities out of the tragedies experienced in WWII.

“When we were approached by the people of the Korean community – who said can you please help us with this – the more we looked at it, we couldn’t find a reason to say no,” Flug explained. “What was happening to these young women in Asia during WWII, was happening to the people who are Holocaust survivors today.”

Since teaming up with KAAGNY, Flug said both Holocaust and Comfort Women survivors have met and formed what they call the Sisterhood of Survivors.

“Now there are very few people on campus who have not heard of the Comfort Women,” he said. “People come in here, not because they’ve been assigned to do a project by their professors, but they heard of the Comfort Women and they want to see the exhibit.”

With the new exhibit, Flug said the school plans on finding new ways of engaging the students as well as potentially releasing a new speaker program to further the discussion.

KAAGNY president Sung K. Min joined Flug at the KHRCA to announce the pending opening of the new exhibit.

“This is not a political issue, this is a human rights issue,” Min said through the help of a translator. “This is to raise awareness and to protect our countrymen and women.”

Read more: Queens Examiner – Permanent Comfort Women exhibit on the way at QCC