LIC Adventure Day

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Gantry Plaza State Park in LIC

Andrew Karistinos’s mustache is amazing. So amazing, in fact, that it became the logo for his restaurant. He owns Jackson’s Eatery | Bar — located at 10-37 Jackson Ave. in Long Island City. Apparently, it’s a rare occasion if you don’t spot Andrew while there.

The dining experience was top-notch. Brunch was fantastic — we had egg dishes, French Toast and pancakes. The pancakes came with a generous portion of blueberry compote and homemade whipped cream — which the bruncher took home and said were just as divine later. The pancakes themselves were nice and fluffy and the compote was so fresh that it tasted like homemade jam. The French Toast was elevated with caramelized bananas and Nutella drizzled on — which was just the right amount. This bruncher said it was just delightful! The omelete was nicely fluffy and the gal who ordered this proclaimed that the potatoes it came with were the best part of her meal. One of our brunchers ordered a dish called Fixin’ to Feast — which included two fried eggs, biscuits ‘n gravy and yam hash browns. He said it was incredible, but wanted to know more about the meat in his gravy. Our host for our LIC adventure got the Southern Eggs Benny — a reliable and enjoyable dish, and he liked the mini sour cream cajun pancakes instead of the English Muffins. There was plenty of outdoor seating and the menu was accessible by scanning a QR code. We appreciated how the coffee was presented (check out the picture), and the cocktails were delectable. Also, the music gave off a chill vibe, and it was key that it wasn’t too loud.

The waitstaff were not only attentive to the human guests, but also to the dogs. Each dog accompanying their owners at the outdoor seating at this establishment was greeted with a big bowl of water.

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Before our group left, we asked the owner, Andrew, if he’d be in a photo with us. He happily joined. We can’t wait to go back and try all their mac & cheese options and the chicken and waffles dish we saw on other tables. Both looked amazing!

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The next item on our LIC agenda was to find a bubble tea place. Our host brought us to Mango Mango (which is just fun to say!) at 47-43 Vernon Blvd. and the ambience was just as bright and bubbly as the beverages! There was a mango-shaped chair swing which we all took turns being photographed in while waiting for our drinks. It was nice and clean inside and the employees were friendly. Most of the brunch crew got bubble tea (Oreo Creme Brulee, Passion Fruit and Signature White Bubble Tea) while others got smoothies (Strawberry and Coconut Mango). The bubble teas tasted very fresh, and there are many other desserts, such as ice cream, cakes, and waffles, so there should be something for everyone wanting a treat.

Our fearless leader continued to show off his new stomping grounds with a walk through Gantry Plaza State Park — where we stopped to snap photos and take breaks to just enjoy the New York City skyline and our drinks.

It was a wonderful adventure to explore LIC a little more. It’s a great neighborhood full of color and inspiring messages. (These signs were outside Black Star Bakery & Kitchen at 10-01 50th Ave.)

Text and photos by Emily, Jennie, Rachelle, Jamie and Jonah


APAC Welcomes new Artistic Director

[From Astoria Performing Arts Center]

unnamedAstoria Performing Arts Center welcomes Tony Williams II as new Artistic Director

Astoria, NY, August 2, 2021—Astoria Performing Arts Center has announced that Tony Williams II will take the lead as Artistic Director in August 2021. Tony recently co-directed and choreographed APAC’s Big Green Theater’s The Mystical Jungle and Luminescent City, a co-production with Superhero Clubhouse (now on FiveOhm.TV) and directed last year’s Summer Stars production of You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown. Tony will lead the previously planned 2021-22 Fall Season and curate the remainder of the Season this summer. “I look forward to continuing excellence that APAC is known for and elevating it to new heights,” said Williams.

Tony Williams II is a New York transplant who has worked regionally as both a director and a choreographer. His love of theatre and dance took him to Jacksonville University earning him a B.F.A with minors in Dance and Music. Since graduating in 2011 Tony has worked for companies such as Clayton State University, Players Theatre, Prospect Theatre, Children’s Theatre Company, Crosswalk Ministries USA. Bronx Arts Ensemble, and New York City Center.

APAC’s 2021-22 Season will contain premiere works of plays and musicals, plus dance, music, and art performances presented at their new permanent home in Long Island City. Currently announced works are Solo Flight (co-production with Heidi Latsky Dance) in July 2021, the postponed production of Man of La Mancha, a musical by Joe Darion, Mitch Leigh, and Dale Wasserman, directed and choreographed by Tony Williams II, Theatre of the Film Noir a play by George F. Walker, and the popular annual community programs Summer Stars and Senior Stars among others. The company will also present free readings and workshops and a new music series to be announced. For more information please visit www.apacny.org.


Ophira Eisenberg to Record Her New Live Comedy Album on Aug. 1

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Ophira Eisenberg is Back From The ‘Quar’ To Record Her New Live Comedy Album at New York Comedy Club on Sunday, August 1, 2021 at 7pm and 9:30pm

Stand-UP Clips From The Comedy Cellar:
Canadians
Being Nice
High Dog-Walker

WHAT: Brooklyn-based, Canadian comedian and host of NPR’s trivia radio show Ask Me Another Ophira Eisenberg is recording her new comedy album at the iconic New York Comedy Club, for upcoming release on 800 Pound Gorilla.

Having released her last album in 2014, Ophira was scheduled to record a new comedy album in April of 2020 but we all remember the lock-down canceling our plans. This was no exception. But she now has even more new material to share, including her thoughts on modern cultural obsessions like CBD, Venmo, and escape rooms, as well as her experiences being a rookie mom, and as a Canadian living in America. Come listen as she transforms these realizations into a hilarious new comedy hour!

WHO: Ophira Eisenberg is a standup comedian, writer and host of NPR’s national syndicated comedy trivia radio show and podcast Ask Me Another where she interviews, jokes around with and plays silly games with Sir Patrick Harris, Tan France, Awkwafina, Roxanne Gay, Terry Crews, Jessica Walter, Bowen Yang, Julio Torres, Nick Kroll, Ben Sinclair, Ethan Hawke and more. She is also a regular host and teller on The Moth Radio Hour.

WHEN: Sunday, August 1, 2021: Shows at 7:00pm and 9:30pm

WHERE: New York Comedy Club, 241 E 24th St, New York, NY 10010

TICKET INFO: 16+, $18.00 drink minimum, $25, or $10 with discount code CANADA.

Tickets available for purchase here

About Ophira Eisenberg:
After her April 2020 album taping was postponed by the pandemic, Ophira Eisenberg is finally poised to record her new hour of material, which now has even more new material informed by a year in the ‘quar.’ Eisenberg is a standup comedian, writer and host of NPR’s national syndicated comedy trivia radio show and podcast Ask Me Another where she interviews, jokes around with and plays silly games with Sir Patrick Harris, Tan France, Awkwafina, Roxanne Gay, Terry Crews, Jessica Walter, Bowen Yang, Julio Torres, Nick Kroll, Ben Sinclair, Ethan Hawke and more. She’s appeared on Comedy Central many times, as well as The Late Late Show, Gotham Live, The New Yorker Festival, Kevin Hart’s LOL Network, and HBO’s Girls. Selected as one of New York Magazine‘s “Top 10 Comics that Funny People Find Funny,” and featured in The New York Times as a skilled comedian and storyteller with a “bleakly stylish” sense of humor.

She is also a regular host and teller on The Moth Radio Hour. Her stories have also been included in two of The Moth’s best-selling collections, including the most recent: Occasional Magic: True Stories About Defying the Impossible. Ophira’s own comedic memoir, Screw Everyone: Sleeping My Way to Monogamy was optioned for a feature film. Her comedy special, Inside Joke, is available on Amazon now.

Ophira Eisenberg Online:
Website
Twitter
Facebook
Instagram


SOLO FLIGHT Final Week — Extended to Aug. 1

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[From Astoria Performing Arts Center]

Now extended through Sunday, August 1, APAC presents Heidi Latsky Dance in the New York City premiere of SOLO FLIGHT, an intimate and provocative volumetric video and film installation playing its final week! Featuring three dance films and three holographic performances, visitors will experience a unique, immersive dance piece that celebrates the complexity and beauty of exquisite, disabled and non-disabled women athletes.

Thursday, July 29 at 6pm/7pm/8pm/9pm
Friday, July 30 at 6pm/7pm/8pm/9pm
Saturday, July 31 at 3pm/4pm/5pm/6pm
Sunday, August 1 at 3pm, 4pm and 5pm JUST ADDED!

Tickets only $15, reservations required, maximum of 6 guests per hour time slot. This production is entirely accessible and open to everyone.

Astoria Performing Arts Center: 44-02 23rd St. in Long Island City
Trains: 7, E, M to Court Square. Limited Street Parking.


New Spot: Ralph’s Famous Italian Ices of Astoria

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There’s a new delicacy in Astoria that’s been here since early March. I’ve been making almost weekly trips to enjoy all the fantastic temptations at Ralph’s Famous Italian Ices of Astoria.

My favorites have included a cup of chocolate and cherry coke ices, and the twister: soft serve ice cream on the bottom and top, with a layer of the ice flavor of your choice in between. There are so many flavor combinations and options of things to try, you may just find yourself going back every week like I do! (Follow me on Instagram and Twitter at @anecdotally.em.) It’s right across from Athens Square Park—a great place to people watch and eat frozen treats!

Ralph’s Famous Italian Ices of Astoria
30-02 30th St
Astoria, NY 11102
917-396-1100
Open every day, 2–11pm
https://www.ralphsices.com


Popup Gift Shop this Saturday at Tacostoria

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[From Tacostoria]
The Astoria New York Entrepreneurs Club is hosting a “Spring Into Summer” Popup Gift Shop on Saturday, June 12 from 11am to 6pm, showcasing a variety of products and services of women-owned Queens-based business. Featured vendors will showcase a wide variety of unique finds, such as gifts for Dads and Grads, jewelry, makeup and skin care, ceramics, painting kits, nail design strips, healthy living products, personalized gifts and much more.
Club member Rocco Del Greco, owner of Tacostoria Taqueria and Cantina, will host the popup gift shop at his restaurant at 36-05 30th Avenue (between 36th and 37th Street) in Astoria. Shoppers will get the chance to enter to win Dinner for Two from Tacostoria Taqueria and Cantina ($50 value, no purchase necessary).
The Club’s members who will be participating in this popup gift shop include: Elena Cruz of CareerProz-Resume Writer, Touchstone Crystal by Swarovski and Avon, Elizabeth Cruz of Handmade by eLIZabeth, Pauline Zammit of Let’s Have Fun With Ceramics, Maria Christoforou of NuSkin and Magical Moments Vacations-Travel Agent, Ileana Tescaru of Blacksea Spell, Lisa Mulero of Little Art Studio, Sophia Hrisomallidou of Hana Lima Craft Shop, Cindy Solis of Total Life Changes, Kelly Biondi of ColorStreet-Easy Nail Designs, Georgia Papadopoulou of NYC Academics, Margaret Ann Xanthos Sargent of State Farm Insurance and PS84 and their Hayward Gourmet Fundraiser.
ABOUT TACOSTORIA TAQUERIA & CANTINA
Tacostoria, located on Astoria’s famous 30th Avenue, is a neighborhood taqueria and cantina serving up fusion-inspired tacos, blended burritos, quesadillas, slushees, sangrias and craft cocktails. Using fresh ingredients and homemade recipes, including vegan tortillas made by hand on premises daily, Tacostoria’s menu showcases a diversity of meat, seafood and vegetarian/vegan options with bold flavors and worldly tastes, a reflection of the spirit of NYC and its people. The restaurant’s web site is https://www.tacostoria.com.
ABOUT THE ASTORIA NEW YORK ENTREPRENEURS CLUB
The Astoria New York Entrepreneurs Club is a local Queens-based business group of entrepreneurs that come together to network, collaborate on projects and events and support each other’s growth and success. Members benefit from becoming part of a broader community of passionate business people who understand that it takes a village to build a successful business. The Club’s monthly “jam sessions” (currently held virtually through Zoom) are inspiring and energizing, and feature lively discussions, presentations on various growth ideas and best practices, opportunities to present each other’s products and services and welcome newcomers to the Club. Members collaborate to promote each other’s businesses through social media and cross promotions.
Social Media
Instagram: @astorianyentrepreneursclub

APAC presents Stuff, a radio play by Mrinalini Kamath

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Astoria Performing Arts Center
presents

Stuff

a radio play

by Mrinalini Kamath

Astoria Performing Arts Center presents the world premiere of Stuff, a radio play by Mrinalini Kamath. Inspired by the 2015 New York Times article “The Lonely Death of George Bell,” Stuff tells the story of lives that intersect when a man dies alone in his cluttered apartment. Stuff is about living alone in modern times.

Stuff features Jen Anaya, Alan Ariano, Shabazz Green, Greg Horton, Jim Nugent, Shetal Shah, and David Shih, is directed by Dev Bondarin, with sound design by Caroline Eng and engineering by Jim Petty.

Stuff will be released in three episodes beginning Tuesday May 11th at 6pm, with each subsequent episode released on Tuesdays in May. The play will be available on APAC’s Five Ohm TV Channel (fiveohm.tv) and on Spotify and other podcast platforms. Listening is free of charge with donations suggested to be made to Astoria Performing Arts Center. More information can be found at www.apacny.org.

Mrinalini Kamath (Playwright) is a Queens-based playwright who attended Johns Hopkins University and the New School for Drama. She was a 2019 recipient of a Queens Council on the Arts New Works Grant for her play Term Limits and was a 2018 Ma-Yi/UWashington Mellon Creative Initiative fellow. Many of her short plays are included in Smith and Kraus anthologies, and she is a member of the Ma-Yi Writers Lab and the PlayGround Experiment, and is an alumna of EST’s Youngblood and the Mission to (dit)Mars Propulsion Lab. For more info about Mrinalini: mkwriter.com

Astoria Performing Arts Center, Inc. (APAC) is an award-winning non-profit theater company dedicated to engaging the residents of Astoria, Long Island City, and greater Queens in contemporary social and cultural issues through live performance and arts education. Established in 2001, APAC has produced a diverse mix of new plays and reimagined musicals and developed dozens of new works. APAC also provides a robust array of community and arts education programs that offer writing and performing opportunities to students, seniors, and residents of all ages with and without disabilities. Recent productions include the New York premieres of Marguerite by Michael Cooper and Anton Dudley featuring Tony Award-winner Cady Huffman and Jump by Charly Evon Simpson directed by Arpita Mukherjee.


BOAST: Best of Astoria Winter Virtual Party 2021 Wrap-Up

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Michelle Slonim Rosenfeld and Ben Rosenfeld

The first virtual BOAST: Best of Astoria party is in the books! Thank you to everyone who attended. We learned a lot for next time we do a virtual event (although we hope next year it can be in person). Our gratitude goes to the musicians, Queens community groups and comedians who participated and presented. We hope everyone had a good time.

Congratulations to the raffle winners, who won prizes from The BonnieAstoria Performing Arts CenterAstoria Bier & Cheese, and The Thirsty Koala.

Would you like to be signed up for the BOAST newsletter, if you are not already signed up? Just comment here or email us at hello@boast.nyc. And if you want to sign up on your own, you can do that from the sidebar of the homepage. Also, let us know if you would like to purchase a magnet of the BOAST 2020 Winners. Here is the post with that graphic.

We want to give a shout-out and thank you to We Heart Astoria for plugging the BOAST party on Instagram. Their website and Instagram links are listed below in the Queens Community Groups section.

Here are the links for the performers and groups at the party.

MUSICIANS
Dan Rauchwerk
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/2rHgkPts59Wrb1BidM8E6z

Andrew Weiss
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/andrewweissandfriends
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/andrewweissmusic/
TikTok: @andrewweissmusic
Website: www.andrewweissmusic.com

Jeff Prentky
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jeffjacobscomedy
Twitter: https://twitter.com/JambaJeff
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jeffjacobscomedy/

Dave Vargo
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/dvargomusic
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/davevargomusic
Website: http://davevargomusic.com/

QUEENS COMMUNITY GROUPS
Queens Together
Website: https://queenstogether.org
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/qns_together/

Astoria Performing Arts Center
Website: www.apacny.org
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/APACNY
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/apacgram/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/APACnyc

Rocky the Pug
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/astoriapug/
Newsletter: http://eepurl.com/g2SFcf

Greater Astoria Historical Society
Website: https://www.astorialic.org
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AstoriaHistory/
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lichistory/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/lichistory?lang=en
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCkGJ3qj2sLweD5J7k-gTRyA

We Heart Astoria
Website: https://weheartastoria.com
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/weheartastoria/

COMEDIANS
Ben and Michelle Rosenfeld
New Parent Smell book: https://www.amazon.com/New-Parent-Smell-Thoughts-Pregnancy/dp/0990855228/
Michelle’s website: https://michelleslonim.net
Ben’s website: https://www.bigbencomedy.com
Ben’s TikTok: https://www.tiktok.com/@bigbencomedy
Michelle’s Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/michelleslonimcomedy/


Virtual Dance Classes for Children and Teens

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[From Anastasia Soroczynski]

Registration is now open for our Virtual Dance Classes for Children and Teens!

Spring Semester: March 1st – May 28th

Our experienced and well-loved teachers (former teachers from RIOULT Dance Center) are here to offer your children engaging, professional programming that will keep them dancing well after the end of class. We cultivate your child’s artistic excellence through our classes for ages 3–15 in Ballet, Modern, Hip Hop, Creative Movement & Pre-Pointe.

Tuition: $122 plus 10% Off Multiple Class and/or Sibling Registration

Virtual Trials Welcome!

Sign Up at: https://forms.gle/G4GbNB9ATLfv7Swx7

Class Schedule includes:
Creative Movement (3–5 years) Tuesdays 4–5pm EST
Creative Movement (3–5 years) Wednesdays 10–11am EST
Ballet I (6–9 years) Mondays 4–5pm EST
Ballet II (10–15 years) Mondays 5:45–6:45pm EST
Pre-Pointe (10–15 years) Mondays 6:45–7:45pm
Modern I (6–9 years) Thursdays 4–5pm EST
Modern II (10–15 years) Thursdays 5:45–6:45pm EST
Hip Hop I (6–9 years) Fridays 4–5pm EST
Hip Hop II (10–15 years) Fridays 5:45–6:45pm EST

Interested in in-person private classes or pod classes, please contact Anastasia Soroczynski at anastasia.soroczynski09@gmail.com.

Info on former teachers from RIOULT Dance Center. (The Center closed due to COVID and they have come together to still offer virtual dance classes through originality, vitality, and diversity along with artistic excellence during a time period that people are still so unsure of what to do.)

Anastasia Soroczynski (Director of Programing, Ballet & Modern Teacher)
Anastasia Soroczynski graduated with a BFA in Dance from SUNY Purchase in 2002. She has performed professionally for over 18 years; upon retiring from her professional dance career, Ms. Soroczynski transitioned into various teaching and administrative capacities. She has previously directed RIOULT’s in-school arts education program called DanceREACH and co-directed the RIOULT Dance School. Currently, the Education Director for Thistle Dance and Community Engagement Consultant for Gotham Dance Theater. Ms. Anastasia teaches extensively domestic and internationally. She is excited to work with your children and ignite their love of dance!

Marc Nuñez (Hip Hop Teacher)
Marc Nuñez is a Queens-based Choreographer, Dancer, and Fitness Instructor. Professionally, Marc has danced for Rihanna, Todrick Hall, Panic! at the Disco, Elijah Wood, BARE Dance Company and Entity Contemporary Dance, as well as played roles in musicals including Peter Pan (International Tour with Cathy Rigby), Newsies, Cabaret and The King and I. He has also appeared in commercials for Nintendo, Disney, and K-Swiss. Marc has directed productions of The Wizard of Oz and Sweeney Todd.

Marc is Founder and Director of Gotham Dance Theater since 2015 and Dance Curator at The Tank. Marc specializes in Contemporary, Jazz, Hip-Hop, Musical Theatre, and Heels. In fitness, Marc specializes in Dance Cardio and has taught at ChaiseFitness (Pilates-based workout) and fitBallet (circuit training). Marc holds a BFA in Dance Performance with Excellence in Choreography from the University of California, Irvine. Marc is a member of Actors Equity and represented by CESD Talent Agency.

Kerry McManus (Creative Movement Teacher)
Kerry McManus is a classically trained modern and ballet teacher. She began her dance studies at Eastern Connecticut Ballet under the direction of Gloria Govrin and Lise Reardon. She then continued her studies at Marymount Manhattan College and graduated in 2017 with a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts in dance. While in school she had the opportunity to perform the works of choreographers like George Balanchine, José Limón, Robert Battle and Jae Man Joo.

Kerry has taught ballet, modern and creative movement classes in Manhattan and Queens. She is currently training to receive a certification in Autism Movement Therapy.

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