Mets to host blood drive on July 6

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The New York Mets are hosting their annual summer blood drive with the New York Blood Center on July 6 at Citi Field.

Fans are encouraged to donate blood from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Foxwoods Club.

This particular drive will produce the team’s 10,000th blood drive donor, who will receive a Mets jersey, four field-level seats to the August 21st game and take part in an on-field pregame presentation.

All fans donating blood will receive a voucher redeemable for two tickets to a select 2017 Mets home game.

Donors must be 17 years of age, or 16 with parents permission. Donors must also weigh at least 110 pounds.

PHOTOS: Fort Totten Independence Day celebration

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Fort Totten played hosted to its third annual Independence Day celebration on a warm and breezy Wednesday.

Thousands of nearby residents brought lawn chairs and settled into the great lawn for the evening.

Vendors lined up on the southern end of the area, selling all sorts of food.

While enjoying the sun, visitors also got a chance to listen to bands like Chicken Head Rocks and Phil Costa and The Something Special Band.

At 9 p.m., the Grucci fireworks went off, much to the amazement of the crowd.

Here are more photos from the event:

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Meng to Trump: Don’t deport military recruits

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Congresswoman Grace Meng fired off a letter to President Trump this week requesting that no foreign-born person recruited into the Armed Forces should be deported.

In 2009, the Department of Defense began a new program to recruit foreign-born people to join our military. Trump is reportedly considering canceling contracts for those 1,000 recruits, leading to their deportation.

According to Meng, since the program began, more than 10,400 troops have provided medical and language assistance, including Russian, Chinese and Pashto.

“MAVNI recruits have contractually agreed to place their lives on the line to protect every American citizen,” Meng said. “I feel it is only right that we honor our contract with them, and that we allow these individuals to continue to live in America once their service has concluded. They are exactly the type of individuals who will continue to make America great.”

Northeast Queens students selected for service academies

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Four students from northeast Queens have been nominated to attend one of five service academies.

Karim Ahmed of Flushing will serve in the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs.

Sung Ho Chong, an Oakland Gardens native currently at Benjamin Cardozo High School, will go to West Point.

Jacqueline Girardin of Fresh Meadows, now a student at Alfred University, was nominated to attend the Air Force Academy.

Allison Lee from Flushing, who goes to LaGuardia High School, will attend the Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland.

 

They are one of six local students nominated by Congresswoman Grace Meng to attend the service academies.

All students will begin attending the academies later this month when they graduate from their high schools. After four years of study, graduates become commissioned as officers in active or reserve components of the U.S. military for a minimum of five years.

Students who want to attend the service academies are typically nominated by their representative in Congress. They’re evaluated based on highly competitive educational, physical and extracurricular standards.

“It is an honor to have nominated these exceptional young men and women to attend our nation’s elite service academies,” Meng said. “These outstanding students are among the best and brightest in our community ad I’m confident the’ll make us proud.”

 

Korean American Association President honored

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Minsun Kim, president of the Korean American Association of Greater New York (KAAGNY), was honored last week by Assemblywoman Nily Rozic.

Assemblymen Edward Braunstein and Ron Kim joined Rozic in introducing a resolution commemorating Kim’s inauguration for her second term as president.

Kim is KAAGNY’s first woman president in its 50-year history, and the first leader to be re-elected for a second term in more than three decades.

Vanderbilt Motor Parkway to be resurfaced

Good news for all the outdoor enthusiasts in the area.

The Vanderbilt Motor Parkway, also known as the Long Island Motor Parkway, has received $1.25 million in city funding for resurfacing.

The public parkland is used by hundreds of people daily.

The Motor Parkway opened in 1908 as a racecourse. It later became a toll road. According to officials, it was the nation’s first highway to use bridges and overpasses.

In 1938, New York State took over the land and remade it into an urban promenade.

The trail was last repaved roughly 20 years ago, and many sections now are still in bad shape. The resurfacing will make the trail safer for all to hike, jog or bike.

“The Vanderbilt Motor Parkway is a Queens gem that must be preserved,” said Councilman Barry Grodenchik, who secured the funding in next year’s budget for the fixes.

Pols, DEP host rain barrel giveaway at Utopia

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Over the weekend, elected officials and the city Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) hosted a free rain barrel giveaway at Utopia Playground in Fresh Meadows.

The event was organized by Assemblywoman Nily Rozic, State Senator Leroy Comrie and Councilman Rory Lancman. It was Rozic’s fifth year organizing the giveaway.

More than 200 of the 55-gallon rain barrels were distributed to Queens residents. Each homeowner took home one along with an installation kit, instructions and the DEP Homeowner’s Guide to Flood Preparedness.

Residents should only use the rain barrels for activities like gardening. It must be disconnected from the downspout during the winter months to avoid freezing, officials said.

They should also be covered to avoid standing water issues and are not meant for resale, according to DEP.