Archive for October, 2013

A Year Later: Woodhaven Steps Up After Sandy

October 29, 2013

One year ago today, Hurricane Sandy slammed into the East Coast, costing many lives – inflicting billions and billions of dollars worth of damage.  Locally, here in New York, people were left homeless, some homes washed away — other destroyed by trees or fire.  It was devastation on an epic scale.

Locally, here in Woodhaven, there was considerable damage (though we got off very easy compared to our neighbors in Howard Beach and the Rockaways).  We spend the first day licking our own wounds (click here for the list of damage along with pictures).

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The biggest blow we suffered was the loss of our tree at Forest Parkway — it was a shocking sight.

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Click here for more pictures of the hurricane’s damage here in Woodhaven.

The following day, after numerous residents asked whether or not we’d be accepting donations, we opened the doors of the Woodhaven Residents’ Block Association, and the donations flowed.  Clothing, bottled water, diapers, medicine, cleaning materials — it was an amazing outpouring of generosity and caring by the residents of Woodhaven.

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And we didn’t just accept clothing — the many volunteers that came in sorted it, folded it, organized it.  We didn’t want to just go down to the Rockaways and drop 50 bags of random clothes on their doorsteps — they had enough to contend with — it was an exhausting first day, but we accomplished a lot.

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Here’s some video from that first day —

Click here for more pictures from that first day.

Many trips to Breezy Point, Howard Beach and the Rockaways followed.  Gasoline was scarce — but many residents volunteered to drive down to the collection points anyway.  And when you drove down there, you walked away realizing how very lucky we were here in Woodhaven.

sandy-relief2-02 sandy-relief2-05 sandy-relief2-09Click here for more on our trips to the areas of impact.

The weekend saw some cold weather come in – but our residents kept bringing in the donations — and we brought them to several different donation points throughout the area, destines for points all over New York.  The residents of Woodhaven donated over 1,000 bags of clothing — all of which was sorted and labeled.  There was tons of food, water, baby supplies — and cash money, which was used to buy even more food and supplies.

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Click here for more pictures from the weekend’s relief efforts.

Even after the initial rush, there was work to be done.  There was a flashlight vigil held at the site of our fallen tree on Forest Parkway where we asked residents to come and pray for the victims — and bring flashlights!

And finally a toy drive for the children of Hurricane Sandy

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Never have I ever been more proud to be a resident of this community.  There were so many people that came in and out of the offices of the Woodhaven Residents’ Block Association, proving that we can do fantastic things when we work together.  And although we haven’t seen many of these volunteers over the past few months, we know they are out there, and that should another disaster occured, they will be there to lend their fellow neighbors a helping hand.  God Bless each and every person who took part in the relief efforts – it is deeply appreciated.

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Woodhaven’s Grapevine – Volume # 99

October 25, 2013

Time got away from us this week, so this week’s Grapevine is more of just a reminder about some great local events:

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In this issue of The Grapevine:
  • Town Hall Meeting – Date Change – 10/28 @ 7:30 PM
  • Radio Free Woodhaven LIVE at 10 PM Friday
  • WRBA / ECCA Toys for Tots Drive – Donate Toys for Children
  • Reconsecration of All Saint’s – Friday, 10/25 @ 7:00 PM
  • Halloween at the Forest Park Carousel 10/26 @ 2 PM
  • Forest Park Dog Run Halloween Costume Contest 10/26 @12:30
  • Woodhaven Historical Society Meeting – History of Doo-Wop 10/30 @ 1 PM
  • Carousel Landmarking Ceremony – 10/28 @ 3:30 PM
  • Queens Tabernacle News
  • Emanuel United’s Annual Church Fair – 11/16 All Day
  • QueensWay Public Forum – 11/13 @ 7:30 PM
** Next Town Hall Meeting – DATE CHANGED.  Our next Town Hall meeting will be on Monday, October 28th at 7:30 PM and will take place at Emanuel United Church of Christ (corner of Woodhaven Boulevard and 91st Avenue). Come out to discuss issues that impact the neighborhood.

** RADIO FREE WOODHAVEN — Tonight’s guest is Paul Toomey of the Forest Park Dog Run.  Click here at 10 PM EST to listen LIVE.
** WRBA / ECCA Toys for Tots Drive.  The Woodhaven Residents’ Block Association is participating in the annual Toys for Toys Drive held by the East Coast Car Association.  ECCA Toys for Tots holds fundraisers throughout the year and has donated over 100K to St. Mary’s Hospital for Children in Bayside.  This is a noble cause – and we will be collecting new, unwrapped educational toys (no stuffed animals, please) and here’s the best part — we will bring them to Forest Park on Sunday, November 17th and take part in a car run to Bayside to deliver the presents.  Please bring a toy to our next Town Hall — or you can drop it off at our office on the day of the Street Fair (Sunday, 10/20/13).
** Reconsecration of All Saint’s – The reconsecration mass for All Saint’s Church (formerly St. Matthew’s) will be held TONIGHT Friday, October 25th at 7 PM.  This is a rare and historic occasion and we wish them all the best – and a great chance to welcome them to the community — and welcome them back at the same time!
** Halloween at the Forest Park Carousel – Our Forest Park Carousel will be a spooktacular place to be on Saturday, October 26th from 2 to 5 PM.  Click here for details.
** Forest Park Dog Run Halloween Costume Contest – The annual K9 Costume Contest will take place at the Forest Park Dog Run (85th Street and Park Lane South) on Saturday October 26th from 12:30 to 3 PM (judging starts at 2 PM) – click here for details on the contest.  If you want to enter your pooch in the costume contest there is a $5 dollar fee for non-members.  There will be a Bobbing for Biscuits contest at 2:45.  They will also be accepting donations of blankets and supplies for pets that need it (click here for info on the blanket donations).
** The Woodhaven Cultural & Historical Society presents “The Roots of Doo-Wop and Rock ‘n’ Roll” (1 PM on Wednesday, October 30th) and Artist Madeline Lovallo (1 PM on Wednesday, November 20th).
** Carousel Landmarking Dedication Ceremony – The Landmarks Preservation Commission along with the NYC Parks Department and CM Elizabeth Crowley will be hosting a dedication ceremony of a plaque commemorating the landmarking of our historic carousel.  The plaque was purchased via donations from organizations from Woodhaven – the Greater Woodhaven Developments Corporation (GWDC), the Woodhaven Business Improvement District (WBID), the Woodhaven Cultural & Historical Society and the Woodhaven Residents’ Block Association.  The ceremony will take place at the Forest Park Carousel on Monday, October 28th at 3:30 PM – everyone is invited.

** Queens Tabernacle News – Queens Tabernacle (8603 96th St) is giving away Free turkeys on Nov. 24 at two services (8am and 11am). You must attend one of the services to be eligible for the free turkey. And on  December 8th at 11am there will be a Christmas concert with the Emmy award winners The Doleman’s. All seats are free.  Queens Tabernacle is also doing an Angel Christmas Tree and accepting gifts for children whose parents are in prison.  Call (718) 846-7575 for details.

** Emanuel United Church of Christ Church Fair – Emanuel’s annual Church Fair will be held on Saturday, November 16th — there will be vendors, used books, knick-knacks and all sorts of goodies, along with a ton of raffle prizes.  A terrific, fun event.

** QueensWay – The Friends of the QueensWay will be holding an open public meeting / presentation at Emanuel United Church of Christ on Wednesday, November 13th at 7:30 PM.

Take Woodhaven Survey – Earn Chance to Win MP4 Player

October 18, 2013

Sunday, October 20th is the Wonderful Woodhaven Street Fair — from 80th Street to Woodhavne Boulevard on Jamaica Avenue.  The Woodhaven Residents’ Block Association will be in front of the office at 84-20 Jamaica Avenue selling Woodhaven T-Shirts.  And right next to the WRBA you will find the Woodhaven-Richmond Hill Volunteer Ambulance Corps where you will be able to get your blood pressure checked for free!

Also – take a few moments to fill out a brief survey about our community and you’ll be entered into a drawing to win an MP4 Player that plays up to 1000 songs and 8 hours of video!

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Conditions for winning the MP4 Player —

(1) You must be a resident of Woodhaven.  You will be required to show proof of residence when collecting prize.

(2) You must take a few moments to fill out a brief survey.

(3) You must provide a way for us to contact you (email or phone).

Note: You must come down to the WRBA on Sunday to fill out the survey – you cannot fill it out online and we are not mailing it out to anyone.

Drawing for the MP4 will be done approximately 5:30 on Sunday, winner will be notified.