Narcissus Garden by Yayoi Kusama//Wikimedia

Queens Today


News, events, sports and politics from the world’s most diverse urban center

TUESDAY, JUNE 19, 2018

Weather in Queens (NWS): Today: 89° Sunny, Night: 75° Clear

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THE LEDE: Good Tuesday Morning! Every team in the World Cup has played at least one game and there have been plenty of surprises — with more to come. Go experience World Cup fever with Egyptian fans at a viewing party and festival at a Coptic Christian church in Ridgewood this afternoon. In immigration news, Council Speaker Corey Johnson blasted the Trump administration’s family separation policy and several Queens council members, including Ozone Park Republican Eric Ulrich echoed the condemnation. A Jackson Heights community group hosts a town hall with Council Member Francisco Moya in an effort to block a new development and Community Board 1 meets in Astoria to review four rezoning proposals. A report by the NYCEDC finds that ride-hailing apps are driving down subway ridership in Queens. And attention art-lovers: Yayoi Nusama’s famed Narcissus Garden art installation is coming to Fort Tilden.

TWEET OF THE DAY: “Separating children from their parents is immoral and unjust. I am sincerely hoping both parties can work together for a solution that unites families and fixes our broken immigration system” — Republican Councilman Eric Ulrich condemned the Trump Administration’s border policy.



Corey Johnson Stands Up for Immigrant Detained During Green Card Interview

Yesterday, City Council Speaker Corey Johnson spoke out in support of Xiu Qing You, a Flushing resident detained by ICE during a green-card interview. You arrived in the US 18 years ago and immediately sought asylum. He married an American citizen and both of his children were born in the US. “This is his home,” Johnson said in a statement. “I want the You family to know that New Yorkers are here for you. We will stand together so that our voices are heard. Our message is simple: Innocent families should never be kept apart by the U.S. government.”

Queens Council Members From Both Parties Condemn the Trump Policy of Separating Families at the Border

On Monday morning, various Queens council members issued statements condemning the separation of families at the US-Mexico border. Eric Ulrich, the borough’s lone Republican council member, condemned the separation policy as “immoral and unjust.” Francisco Moya called the policy “mind-bogglingly cruel” and Adrienne Adams quoted a recent New York Times column that explained how “barbaric” family separation “threatens the mental and physical health of both the children and their caregivers.”

Decreased Subway Ridership Is Due to Reliance on Ride-Hailing Apps, NYCEDC Reports

More and more often, New York City residents are choosing Uber and Lyft over subways and buses, a recent report by the New York City Economic Development Corporation revealed. “Growth in subway ridership began to fall as app-based companies took to the streets,” the report states, adding that subway and bus ridership decreased by 5.6% between March 2017 and March 2018. According to the NYCEDC, Queens and Brooklyn accounted for big chunk of the decrease in MTA ridership.

Watch Superstar Mo Salah and Egypt take on Russia at an Egyptian Festival in Ridgewood

St. Mary and St. Antonios Coptic Orthodox Church in Ridgewood will host a viewing party and cultural festival from 1 pm to 6 pm today in honor of Egypt’s World Cup soccer team. Join soccer fans and church members as they watch superstar Mo Salah and his Egyptian teammates take on host Russia in their second match of the 2018 World Cup. The game starts at 2 pm and the festival will feature Egyptian food and desserts, face painting and free flags.

Community Board 1 to Review St. Michael’s Park and 12th Street Rezonings

Community Board 1 will meet at the Pistilli Grand Manor on Ditmars Blvd. in Astoria tonight at 6:30 pm. Agenda items include public hearings on proposed rezonings in St. Michael’s Park, along 12th Street and at Variety Boys and Girls Club. This will be the last Community Board 1 meeting until September 18.

Jackson Heights Community Group Questions Developer’s Donations to Katz, de Blasio and Moya in Effort to Block Project

Queens Neighborhoods United has long opposed Yeheskel Elias’ planned Jackson Heights development. Now, the community group has begun highlighting the developers’ campaign donations to elected officials with the power approve rezoning related to the project as further reason to block the development. “From looking at the time lines of those donations it’s without a doubt a violation of the spirit of New York City’s campaign finance laws,” a Queens Neighborhoods United spokesperson told The Real Deal. “Even if it’s been made before the rezoning, it’s clearly with the intent of gaining approval.” Elias donated $4,970 to Mayor de Blasio’s re-election campaign, $3,850 to Queens Borough President Melinda Katz and $1,000 City Council Member Francisco Moya. The organization will host a town hall meeting with Moya at the Jewish Center of Jackson Heights tonight at 6:30 pm.

Watch the World Cup with Passionate Egyptian Fans at a Church Festival This Afternoon

This World Cup, everyone seems to be rooting for Egypt, led by dynamic playmaker Mo Salah. Join in on the Egyptian excitement today at Ridgewood’s St. Mary and St. Antonios Coptic Christian Church, which will host a viewing party and festival from 1 pm to 6 pm. The event will feature traditional Egyptian food and desserts, face-painting and free Egyptian flags. At 2 pm, Egypt takes on Russia in their second match of the tournament.

Japanese Artist Yayoi Kusama Brings her Groundbreaking Garden Installation to the Rockaways

Beginning July 1, hundreds of mirrored steel balls will cover Fort Tilden as famed artist Yayoi Kusama’s Narcissus Garden blooms in the Rockaways. MoMA PS1 will deliver the art installation, which has appeared all over the world since it debuted in 1966. Yet, MoMA PS1 Director Klaus Biesenbach told the New York Times that Narcissus Gardens “will look very, very different than before.” He did not disclose further details, which means it is up to Queens residents to see for themselves.



LONG READ: “As goes the South, so goes the Nation.” Imani Perry writes about changing Alabama in Harper’s

ANOTHER LONG READ: “There’s been a global increase in armed groups. Can they be restrained?” writes Kenneth R. Rosen in The New York Times Magazine

VIRAL: Portuguese fans launched a petition to return a very bad Cristiano Ronaldo statue to a place of honor

YUM: The New York Times reviews Lahi, a Filipino restaurant in Elmhurst that fuses traditional dishes with innovative fare


NATIONAL NEWS: Hundreds March to Texas Tent City Where Children Are Detained NPR . . . First Lady Says US Should Govern ‘With Heart’ Boston Globe

FOREIGN DISPATCHES:  Trump Attacks Germany’s Refugee Policy, Falsely Claims Crime is Up The New York Times . . . Head of Audi Arrested Over Diesel Emissions Scandal Reuters


QUEENS SPORTS: Watch Mo Salah and Egypt take on World Cup hosts Russia an Egyptian festival in Ridgewood’s St. Mary and St. Antonios Coptic Christian Church



12:15 pm to 1:15 pm: Yoga Classes hosted by the Bayside Historical Society at the Castle in Bayside

1 pm to 6 pm: Watch Egypt take on Russia at an Egyptian festival hosted by St. Mary and St. Atonious Coptic Orthodox Church

6 pm to 9 pm: The Locals Rule Band Summer Residency Concert at Riis Beach Bazaar

6:30 pm: Queens Neighborhood United hosts town hall on proposed Jackson Heights Development

6:30 pm: Community Board 1 Meets in Astoria

6:30 pm to 8:30 pm: Common Thread: Making a Community Memory Quilt at the Flushing Main St. Library

7 pm to 8 pm: Alfresco Community Drumming Class in Long Island City

7 pm to 9 pm: Newtown Literary Issue #12 Launch Reading in Ridgewood

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