Queens Botanical Garden awarded $20K TD Green Space Grant


Photo courtesy of Queens Botanical Garden

To support an innovative urban greening and tree planting project, TD Bank Group and the Arbor Day Foundation awarded the Queens Botanical Garden a $20,000 grant last week.

QBG will partner with students from John Bowne High School’s agriculture program to help fight urban heat island effect by planting trees ad installing green infrastructure in the Cherry Circle of the Garden.

QBG staff and interns, as well as students from John Bowne HS and Cardozo HS, led a mulching demonstration on the newly-planted trees.

According to the garden, here are the new trees planted:

Golden Raindrops Crabapple

Malus transitoria

AKA ‘Golden Raindrops’


Japanese Snowbell                     

Styrax japonicus

AKA ‘Emerald Pagoda’


Japanese Tree Lilac

Syringa reticulata                                                 


Green Hawthorn

Crataegus viridis

AKA ‘Winter King’                        


Pink Mountain Silverbell

Halesia tetraptera var. monticola

AKA ‘Arnold Pink’             


Pagoda Dogwood

Cornus alternifolia                                                           

Mountain Silverbell

Halesia monticola


Elizabeth Magnolia

Magnolia x

AKA ‘Elizabeth’

Flushing Library begins to-go services on November 16


The Central and Flushing branches of Queens Public Library will begin offering to-go services beginning Monday, November 16 at 10 a.m.

That means customers can request books in advance either online, using the QPL app, or calling 718-990-0728. Customers can also return materials to locations offering to-go services.

Flushing Library will be open to the public from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, with a one-hour closure from 1 to 2 p.m. to cleaning.

It will be open Tuesdays from 1 to 5 p.m. and Thursdays from noon to 7 p.m., with closures from 3 to 4 p.m. for cleaning.

More than 20 other QPL branches are also open for to-go services.

Whitestone corner proposed to be named after Monsignor John C. Tosi

Msgr Tosi

Councilman Paul Vallone has put in legislation to co-name the intersection of Clintonville Street and Locke Avenue in Whitestone as “Msgr. John C. Tosi Way.”

Community Board 7 approved the co-naming at their monthly meeting on Monday.

Tosi was a priest for over 45 years, and a monsignor for 23 years in the Diocese of Brooklyn.

He passed away on May 23 after suffering from a coronary condition. He was 73.

Born in Flushing, Tosi attended St. Ann’s School, Monsignor McClancy Memorial High School, Cathedral College, Douglaston and Immaculate Conception Seminary.

Tosi was ordained a monsignor in 1997. In January 2005, he was named pastor of St. Luke’s, where he stayed until he died this year.

“Monsignor Tosi was a man of deep faith and firm commitment to bettering each and every community he served throughout his lifetime,” Vallone said. “His loss is felt profoundly throughout the Whitestone community and I’m proud to propose this street co-naming in his honor.”

Queens College gives President’s Medal to alumnus Ricardo L. Cortez

Ricardo Cortez headshotQueens College President Frank Wu has awarded his first Presidential Medal to distinguished alumnus Ricardo L. Cortez.

Cortez, a financier and asset management specialist, was honored at the college’s annual Academic Excellence Award Ceremony, where he gave the keynote address.

He graduated cum laude from Queens College in 1972 with a degree in mathematics. Cortez went on to be certified as an Investment Management Analyst at the Wharton School in 1993.

Cortez is now the co-chief executive officer of Broadmark Asset Management.

“I graduated from Bayside High School in 1967, and perhaps like some Queens College students, I was the first in my family to go to college,” he said.

He applied to three schools: Columbia, St. John’s and Queens College.

“I was accepted at all three, but my parents, who did not have a lot of money, thought Queens College was by far the best choice,” Cortez said. “They turned out to be right.”

Participate in this year’s Halloween Essay and Poetry Contest

Mother's Day Essay Contest 2019

Don’t miss this year’s Halloween Essay & Poetry Contest, sponsored annually by Assemblyman Edward Braunstein.

Students from grades two through five are invited to participate.

The essay or poem submission should have a Halloween theme, such as favorite trick-or-treat experience or a short story related to Halloween.

If interested in participating, print your full name, grade and school on the entry.

Essays and poems can be submitted to Braunstein’s office by mail (213-33 39th Avenue, Suite 238 Bayside, NY 11361) or email (braunsteine@nyassembly.gov).

District-wide prizes will be awarded to a winner in each grade. Certificates of Merit will be given to all students who participate.

The contest deadline is Thursday, November 5.

For any questions, contact Braunstein’s office at 718-357-3588.

Get your free flu shot at Queens Botanical Garden

flu shots 2020-page-001

On Wednesday, Councilman Peter Koo is teaming up with the Chinese Community Partnership for Health, NY Presbyterian and Queens Botanical Garden to offer free flu shots to the Flushing community.

Those interested in the free flu shots must be over 10 years old, live in Council District 20, and be in relatively good health, meaning no cold or fevers at the time).

You must also register before coming in for the flu shot. Shots will be administered at Queens Botanical Garden, located at 43-40 Main Street, between 3 and 6 p.m.

There are a limited number of shots available, so the priority will be given to residents of District 20 over 50 years, without insurance and/or chronic illness.

“The pandemic has highlighted just how important it is to be conscious of our health and get vaccinated,” Koo said. “An annual seasonal flu vaccine is a great way to boost your immune system and stay healthy.”

School of Rock location to open along Francis Lewis Blvd

Screen shot via Google Maps.

Screen shot via Google Maps.

School of Rock is opening its Bayside location, located at 34-43 Francis Lewis Boulevard, this Saturday.

The grand opening will take place from noon to 6 p.m. The afternoon will feature a ribbon-cutting ceremony, live music and free trial lessons.

Of course, there will be precautions like social distancing and masks to keep everyone saef.

School of Rock provides students of all ages music lessons, including guitar, singing, drum and piano lessons. Students learn theory and techniques through songs from legends like Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin and Frank Zappa.

Learn more about School of Rock and its Bayside location here.