Locals take control of their health

Last weekend, men ages 45 and up had the opportunity to take control of their health and get tested for prostate cancer.

On July 24, Mount Sinai’s Robert F. Smith Prostate Cancer Screening Mobile Unit was stationed at The Shops at Atlas Park, located at 8000 Cooper Avenue in Glendale.

Mount Sinai partnered with NYS Senator Joseph Addabbo to bring the hospital’s free PSA blood tests into the community.

This free screening was available to men who have never been previously diagnosed and treated for prostate cancer, whether or not they have health insurance.

“As men age it is vitally important that they take care of their prostate health through annual exams because if something is wrong, it is essential to catch prostate cancer early,” Addabbo said.

“Prostate cancer is one of the deadliest cancers in the U.S. and early detection is key to combating this illness. After the pandemic our previous provider of prostate cancer screenings went out of business so it took us some time to bring this service back to the community,” he continued. “I want to thank Mount Sinai and Atlas Park for their partnership in this event and for working with my team to set up this important free health screening for men across the district.”

Women will also have the chance to advocate for their health, through a free Mammogram Screening service in Maspeth.

On Wednesday, August 3, the American-Italian Cancer Foundation will have their Mammogram Bus located outside of the Maspeth Federal Savings Bank branch located at 56-18 69th Street, in Maspeth from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. to provide free mammogram screenings to women who register for the event through Addabbo’s office.

In order to be eligible for the clinical breast exam, women must be between 40 and 79 years old with health insurance, or between 50 and 79 years old without health insurance.

They must currently live in New York City, and have not had a mammogram in the last 12 months.

Uninsured patients are welcome, there are no co-payments, and all deductibles are waived for this service.

Although registration is preferred, walk-ins will be accommodated on a limited basis.

Addabbo encourages residents to call his office at (718) 738-1111 or the American-Italian Cancer Foundation at 1-877-628-9090 to secure their appointment.

Perlman: Reviving the chimes in Station Square

By Michael Perlman


History will be made in Station Square beginning on August 1, as Forest Hills Gardens residents and visitors will hear chimes from the tri-clock tower on the hour at 3 p.m. with three chimes, and 6 p.m. with six chimes, complementing traditions in European villages and cities, as well as in Colonial towns.

This will mark the rebirth of a tradition that began decades ago, but is long-forgotten by most, and unknown by newcomers.

Forest Hills will once again be on the map, reminiscent of the charm and grandeur of London’s Big Ben, Spasskaya Tower of the Kremlin, and St. Mark’s Basilica in Venice.        

In recent years, the iconic Forest Hills Inn underwent weatherproofing and roof restoration work.

Then in 2018, Station Square underwent a large-scale restoration initiative encompassing its utilities and the historic brick roadway, situated in a signature Union Jack pattern, as well as a median reconfiguration, transforming it closer to its roots.

In the recently enhanced regal wood-paneled Forest Hills Inn lobby, with period furniture, a fireplace, and “Pub Room” in gold leaf stenciled in the background, this columnist spoke with Aaron Bitic, project manager and founder of home improvement firm Das365 Inc, as well as George Hoban, board president of Station Square Inn Apartments.

At 33, Bitic, who is a shareholder of the Forest Hills Inn, emphasized his pride in being born and raised in Forest Hills.

He said, “I admire the Tudor and Arts & Crafts style, and there is no other town in New York that looks like this. I feel very fortunate and honored.” The neighborhood’s ambiance motivated him to initiate the chimes in Station Square.

Hoban explained “Through Aaron’s company, he can provide technical skills and advice to complex applications that can be done electronically or through a computer. He is very kind to be able to donate his services.”

Bitic continued, “I donated the equipment for the sound and a computer for its programming.” In mid-May, Bitic approached Hoban, who recalled, “He said that he would like to explore this at no cost, and I said, ‘Great. It would be consistent with the aesthetics of our neighborhood.’”

Chimes restoration expert Aaron Bitic behind a clock in the tower.

Precisely when and why residents stopped hearing the chimes is a mystery.

Two years ago, Bitic’s vision of restoring the clock tower and the chimes originated.

“I learned that it used to chime, but some of the crucial parts went missing,” he said.

Hoban made his home at the Inn in 1997.

He reminisced, “The chimes were working then. They would go off from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. and ring on the hour. Many times, they were very helpful, since I would be getting ready for work. There was a beauty to it, whether it is European or the sound of a quiet Sunday in the city, mid-day. I feel as if I’m in an old German town somewhere in Europe on a snowy night or day.”

George Hoban & Aaron Bitic near the clock tower.

Beginning in 1912, when guests and prospective residents picked up a copy of “Forest Hills Inn,” an early 20th century illustrated pamphlet by philanthropic organization Russell Sage Foundation’s subsidiary, Sage Foundation Homes Company, they learned about Forest Hills Gardens’ benefits of location, education, and business, as evident by the planning of parks and open spaces alongside homes embodying architectural treatment.

It read, “Grouped around the arcade, through whose arches may be seen the Common, the groves, and the homes of Forest Hills Gardens, are attractive stores and shops that supply every normal want. In the center of the Square, the play of a fountain adds to the vivacity and charm of the scene. The architecture and plan of Station Square have been designed to provide an attractive spot for the common use and pleasure of residents. Beauty, harmony, and utility are here combined in a unique way.”

Inspired by Sir Ebenezer Howard’s Garden City Movement, this model residential development was designed by principal architect Grosvenor Atterbury and landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr.

Station Square accommodated a classy social life, particularly at the spire-adorned Forest Hills Inn, which opened on May 1, 1912 and offered 150 rooms, adjoining the Raleigh apartments on the east and the Marlboro apartments on the west.

The LIRR Station, accessible from the Inn through arcades and bridges sheltering residents and visitors from the weather, enabled a 13-minute commute to Manhattan.

Historic events transpired, including annual Fourth of July celebrations, such as Col. Theodore Roosevelt’s “100 Percent American” speech on July 4, 1917 at Forest Hills Station.

In 1968, the inn was converted into a residence.

Bitic is an all-around hands-on man of determination, who recognizes the value behind restoration, volunteering, and a cleaner and more appealing environment.

Among his diverse projects included cleaning the velvet chairs in Radio City.

Das365 Inc. is Green Seal certified and offers cleaning specialty services consisting of brush vacuum shampoo drying, steam cleaning, carpet and upholstery, mattress deep cleaning, drapery fabric leather, wood floor cleaning and conditioning, and stone tile cleaning and sealing.

Bitic explained the chimes’ restoration process, which spanned a month and required an estimated 45 hours of work. “Since crucial parts were missing, the challenge was trying to find what may be the original sound (which Hoban recalled as Westminster). I am able to edit and extract tones from mp3 sound files and repeat them every 4 to 5 seconds, and produce new sound files. We were also missing a computer. The receiver was old and didn’t work well. It was from Radio Shack. When I turned it on, it didn’t have enough power, so I donated my own receiver, offering high definition sound. I was proud to also donate my know-how.”

Residents can now anticipate the chimes to go off to the second, based on an algorithm that he programmed.

One may wonder about the associated restoration costs for other projects.

Bitic explained, “If there is an original sound system, but the receiver doesn’t operate or the computer needs to be revamped or updated, it could be $8,000. If there is a clock tower with no system or speaker and they wanted it to be installed, it would cost $10,000 to $25,000.”

This is Bitic’s first project of its kind.

“If I had another opportunity to restore a clock tower with chimes, I can do it,” he said.

Hoban commended Bitic as “an example of the residents who are very proud of this building,” and said, “I’ve lived here for 25 years, and I have never walked out that door and not been impacted by the beauty of Station Square. Anything that we can do, within reason, to enhance that, we will jump all over.”

Bitic continued, “Volunteering is crucial to spread positivity in a mysterious world of negativity and positivity. Maybe you can change someone’s mind and heart from negative to the neutral and positive sides, and maybe they can contribute to something in their lives, as in a ripple effect.”

Hoban began dissecting the word “cooperative,” as per his role on the board. “My board members volunteer their own time, as well as plenty of other residents.”     

This project is also an example of how it is significant to preserve and restore America’s clocks and its chimes. It also makes one wonder how many clock towers are analog with a bell and how many consist of a sound system with speakers.

Clocks restoration team, Sept. 1992

Bitic explained, “I feel it’s very important to bring back history to the present time, since someone else will do that in the future. Otherwise, it will be forgotten.”

The visit to the Forest Hills Inn continued with a walk up a winding staircase into the clock tower for a demonstration and a few test runs, but within days, the public will experience the Real McCoy of the chimes, as the clocks keep on ticking in the name of a timeless garden community.

For more information about the services Bitic offers at Das365 Inc, please visit their website: www.das365inc.com

John Jastremski: A Passing Storm Or A Storm Front For the NY Locals?

By John Jastremski

Back in late March, I think it’s fair to say that both respective NY baseball fan bases would have signed on the dotted line for where they stand in late July heading into the Subway Series. 

Imagine saying in late March that the Yankees would have a 12.5 division lead and be 35 games over .500? 

Or how about the Mets finding a way to maintain a 2 game lead in the National League East without Jacob deGrom throwing a pitch in the 2022 season. 

Sure, the first four months were a whole lot of positive vibes for the NY Baseball locals, but the last few weeks have highlighted that despite the amazing four months of winning ball that both teams have treated us two, neither team is perfect. 

The Yankees depth has been tested for the first time all season. 

They lost Luis Severino in the rotation to the IL. 

The bullpen has lost Chad Green and now Michael King for the season. 

The Yankees feeling of invincibility was quieted in a recent doubleheader sweep at the hands of the hated Houston Astros. 

The Astros outpitched, outhit and outplayed the Yankees every which way. 

You combine the Yankees history in Houston, the Yankees playoff history against the Astros and the recent injury bug, it only heightens the importance of the next two weeks for Yankees General Manager Brian Cashman.  

There is work to do. 

The Yankees need a big starter, an outfielder to replace the inept Joey Gallo & a bullpen arm or two to supplement the losses of Green and King. 

The Yankees need a big move, they’ve been knocking at the door of an American League Pennant for the last five years, the time to go big is now. 

For the Mets, the heightened concern about the state of affairs has been triggered by a few reasons. 

The Mets offense has been MIA for a few weeks. 

The team that was getting every big hit in the first two plus months of the year stopped hitting. 

The Mets simply don’t have enough power within their lineup. It is an absolute must to get more power to compliment Pete Alonso. 

There is a lengthy shopping list for the Mets heading into the August 2nd trade deadline. 

Power bat? Power bullpen arms? Help Wanted! 

I fully expect the Mets and their aggressive ownership group to make the necessary moves over the next few weeks, but the biggest million dollar question still hovers over the franchise. 

What version of Jacob deGrom are you getting off the Injured List? 

The difference between vintage deGrom and so so deGrom could determine the fate of the season. 

However, complimenting a struggling Mets lineup with much needed power could make deGrom more of a luxury and not a necessity. 

So, there’s work to be done for both the Yankees and the Mets to fine tune their rosters for championship aspirations. 

That’s a good thing. 

Two win now, first place NY Baseball teams. 

Who will be the next David Justice or Yoenis Cespedes to live in NY Trade Deadline lore? 

We’ll soon find out… 

You can listen to my podcast New York, New York every Sunday, Tuesday & Thursday on The Ringer Podcast Network on Spotify/Apple Podcasts. 

You can watch me nightly on Geico Sportsnight after Mets postgame on SNY.

Festival of Cinema NYC returns to Forest Hills

Showcase includes over 120 films from 25+ countries

By Jessica Meditz


Next week, residents of Forest Hills and its surrounding communities will have the chance to enjoy a fun activity while summer is still here.

Festival of Cinema NYC, a nonprofit organization focused on bringing the works of diverse filmmakers to the community, will return to the Regal UA Midway at 108-22 Queens Blvd. for their festival on August 5.

Featuring 124 independent films from more than 25 countries, the 10-day festival offers locals an opportunity to learn about the world of filmmaking and become engaged with the arts community.

Over 90 filmmakers are expected to attend.

“I hope that residents get a better understanding and appreciation of independent film, especially with all these Hollywood blockbusters coming out. So I hope audiences come out and find a true appreciation for these films, or at least discover these filmmakers and this whole genre of independent films,” Jayson Simba, founder and director of Festival of Cinema NYC, said.

“Because roughly 90 filmmakers have confirmed attendance, we’re hoping that the audience could connect with the filmmakers and learn more about their process,” he continued. “After the film is shown, we do a Q&A with the filmmakers, where the audience can ask questions. Afterwards, everyone can mix, mingle, network, and take pictures together.”

One of these filmmakers is Nicola Rose, director of “Goodbye, Petrushka,” which she describes as a “not quite romantic comedy” about a spunky oddball named Claire.

The film poster for “Goodbye, Petrushka”

Although it is set in Paris, “Goodbye, Petrushka” was actually entirely filmed in New York City—in areas such as Harlem, Washington Heights, and Midtown, to be specific.

“We did the best possible job we could faking Paris,” Rose said.

“Claire puts everything on hold as an au pair over in Paris… Basically everything goes wrong that could go wrong. It’s a complete comedy of errors.”

The character falls in love with a retired figure skater, which is unreciprocated, but Rose said that they needed to meet each other in order to realize where they needed to go in their lives.

“Each of them are at this very different, but similar creative crossroads,” she added.

Exemplifying the diversity of the films selected, another film called “Wishing for Wings” will have its world premiere at the Festival of Cinema NYC.

The director, Kim Johnson, hails from Port of Spain in the country of Trinidad & Tobago, where the film was also shot.

“Wishing for Wings” is based on the 2013 book by Debbie Jacob with the same title, whom Johnson is friends with.

The film centers around Jacob, an American librarian who teaches literature to teenage boys who are in prison at YTC Youth Training Center, located to the east of the city.

Helping to prepare the boys for exams, the newly found teacher/student relationship affects their lives in ways that neither foresaw.

“This is the story of the boys getting accustomed to her, and her getting accustomed to the boys, it was them growing together,” Johnson said.

“Debbie is white, and they are Black. So they were both suspicious and uncomfortable with one another, and they actually came to love one another,” he continued. “It was a very emotional experience for her and for them.”

Kim Johnson in his element.

Although Johnson cannot make it to the festival, he is excited and proud to have his film shown to the diverse communities Queens has to offer.

“I spent all the money out of my pocket for the film and of course, [the screening] doesn’t pay me back what I put into it. But at the same time, it is some recognition that I did something that’s valuable and worthwhile.” he said.

In addition to the festival at Regal UA Midway, Festival of Cinema NYC will offer programming throughout the week, including a pre-launch party at Resorts World New York City’s Bar 360 on Aug. 4, and sessions at the Forest Hills Library from Aug. 9 until the 12.

There will also be an awards ceremony for the filmmakers at Jamaica Performing Arts Center on Aug. 14.

Ticket prices vary for the various events, but general admission is $17. Folks can purchase a 10-ticket bundle for $136 and save 20 percent, or a 15-ticket bundle for $178.50 to save 30 percent. The VIP All-Access Film Badge costs $365.

For a full list of the schedule and more information about the festival, visit www.festivalofcinemanyc.com

Police impersonation, home invasion, robbery on Doran Ave.

Perp got away with $10K, still at large

By Jessica Meditz


Photo: Google Maps

A home invasion and robbery occurred Saturday at around 1 a.m. on Doran Ave. in Glendale, police say.

A 27-year-old female victim reported that two unidentified males, one of them wearing an NYPD t-shirt, ballistic vest, and a baseball cap, rang her doorbell looking for her boyfriend, claiming they were NYPD officers before kicking in the door and handcuffed her.

The individuals displayed a firearm and forcibly entered the residence.

The 104th Precinct shared these photos of the suspects and vehicles involved.

Police say the suspects removed $10,000 cash and fled in a black Ford Mustang and dark colored Nissan crossover model.

Upon arrival, officers encountered the woman standing in the street, handcuffed. She did not sustain any injuries as a result of this crime.

At the time of publication, no arrests have been made in regard to this incident and the investigation is ongoing.

Residents of the neighborhood remain concerned about the motive of the crime, and what the recent uptick in crime means for the community in the long term.

“Who leaves $10,000 on their night table? If that’s true, I’m going to assume the burglary was drug-related,” Kathy Masi, a Glendale resident and member of Community Board 5, said.

“Unfortunately, due to bail reform we are seeing large spikes in crime throughout the city and right here locally in our neighborhood,” Michael Conigliaro, a Rego Park resident and the Republican candidate for the upcoming State Assembly District 28 election, said.

“Police officers risk their lives each day they put on their uniform and under the current flawed criminal justice system, criminals are released after an arrest without any fear of repercussions of committing the same crime again,” he continued. “This is unacceptable and needs to stop.”

Locals don’t see eye-to-eye on Citi Bike

By Jessica Meditz


As Citi Bike continues to expand in Queens and throughout the city, cyclists, drivers, and other commuters are becoming more vocal about their views on the bike sharing system.

This summer, the DOT and Lyft plan to follow through with a Citi Bike expansion plan that was released in February, adding 52 Citi Bike stations throughout Community Board 5’s neighborhoods of Middle Village, Maspeth, Glendale, and Ridgewood.

Because the majority of proposed Citi Bike locations are in roadbeds, community leaders and civic groups remain concerned about the impact on small businesses and residential areas with the loss of parking that’s to come.

In response, the Juniper Park Civic Association released a counter proposal to the DOT’s Citi Bike draft plan in April, suggesting that only 43 stations be added to the community—all on sidewalks.

“We’re a transit desert in most of the areas, so they were putting more of their stations in the street, which takes parking away from people who need it for parking at their residences or businesses,” said Christina Wilkinson, a member of JPCA.

“I think our plan is more sensitive to the needs of the community,” she continued. “We’re having bus stops taken away from us and spaced further apart. So having bike share with this narrow criteria that the DOT has of every two or three blocks is not very realistic if they’re asking people who take mass transit to walk further to get to the bus.”

Although Wilkinson said that the DOT seemed fairly receptive to their counter proposal, it has since been revealed that most of their suggestions were rejected.

Since then, Councilman Robert Holden called out the DOT, demanding they stand up for New Yorkers and work with civic organizations to incorporate community feedback into these plans.

He has also called for Queens DOT Commissioner Nicole Garcia to be fired.

“The Queens DOT has repeatedly put the brakes on most requests for stop signs, speed bumps, and other traffic safety measures. Someone shouldn’t have to die for the Queens DOT to act, but that is exactly what the Queens

DOT has done under Commissioner Garcia,” Holden said in a statement.

“Garcia’s Queens DOT makes a dog and pony show out of asking for community input and then throws it in the gutter,” he continued. “Lyft’s Citi Bike program continues to gobble up parking spaces badly needed by hardworking New Yorkers, like a giant corporate PAC-MAN who refuses to hear the reasonable requests of middle-class neighborhoods in favor of the fanatical anti-car movement and a corporation with a vested interest in getting New Yorkers to give up owning cars.”

Although she supports cyclists and feels all commuters should be able to live cohesively, Kathy Masi, a Glendale resident and member of Queens Community Board 5, also feels angry and ignored due to the “lack of transparency” surrounding the issue.

“The DOT made a proposal of where these locations were going to be, sent it to Community Board 5, who sent it to the Transportation Committee, who never sent it to the entire Community Board for a vote. Every board member has a right to this information and the right to have input,” she said.

“It actually seems that there was no thought process by DOT or, had this gone to the entire Community Board for discussion, I’m sure that a lot of these issues would have been brought up,” she continued. “We have never had a major DOT issue that was not put before the board. For example, the bus lane on Fresh Pond Road.”

As skepticism of the proposed Citi Bike locations continues, other residents are just as outspoken about why they believe more docking stations would improve the community.

Elizabeth Crowley, a Ridgewood resident, former councilwoman for Glendale, Maspeth, Middle Village, Ridgewood, and parts of Woodside and Woodhaven in District 30, and a candidate for State Senate District 59, is actively pro-bike, advocating for protected bike lanes and for more folks to ditch their cars and start biking.

She is in favor of the DOT’s Citi Bike plan to build locations in roadbeds.

“The sidewalks are for pedestrians, and far too many pedestrians feel threatened by bikers. We need to remind cyclists, as some of them are not respecting sidewalks and using them when they have to stay on the road. The whole idea of taking up a sidewalk is counterintuitive to using our roads for cyclists,” Crowley said.

Mollie Lauffer, a Glendale resident and an organizer of new bike advocacy group Ridgewood Rides, echoed Crowley’s sentiment that Citi Bike stations are safest on the road, not the sidewalk.

“Sidewalks are already too crowded and there’s not enough space for people as it is. Cars park on them and cause damage, cars block crosswalks, and people can’t see when they’re trying to cross the street. If bicycles are parked in the road it’ll prevent cars from parking there and make it safer for everyone,” Lauffer said.

She argued that because a single parking space can fit at least 10 bikes and many cars in the area only have one occupant, the city should not have to go out of its way to preserve street parking spots.

“Biking has exploded in Ridgewood the past couple years. You can see people riding bikes here all over the place and people are just trying to make do—Ridgewood, Glendale, Middle Village, Maspeth doesn’t have any truly protected bike lanes with hard barriers,” Lauffer said.“It’s time for us to have safe infrastructure like they’re building everywhere else in the city.”

Queens College student athlete receives All-American honors

Queens College freshman Marc Cisco has made his mark in the college’s history during his first year with the Knights, earning All-American honors in baseball. He is just the second baseball student-athlete in the college’s Athletic Program Division II era, which began in 1985, to be recognized — and the first since 1998.

Cisco, a Long Island City resident, earned a vast collection of awards for his freshman year. These accolades include 2022 NCAA Division II Conference Commissioners Association All-American Third Team Honors — one of only four freshmen selected — being named to the American Baseball Coaches Association/Rawlings All-American Third Team and National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Second Team All-American honors.  

The second basemean is one of only four players in the East Region to earn all-American honors, and is the first player since 2019 to be recognized in the East Coast Conference (ECC). 

“We are absolutely delighted at Marc’s All-American honors and offer him and his family our warmest congratulations,” Queens College President Frank H. Wu said. “Marc’s success is a shining example of how well we combine the student-athlete experience with a rigorous course of academic study, as he attained these honors while pursuing a degree in actuarial studies.”

Cisco is the first All-American to be named to the American Baseball Coaches Association/Rawlings Team since outfielder Justin Davies during the 1998 season.

“We could not be happier for Marc and the incredible season he had,” Queens College Head Baseball Coach Chris Reardon, who incidentally was the roommate of Davies when they played together during their college careers, said. “His numbers show that, but his impact on each game, our season, and program go well beyond numbers. He is an outstanding person and teammate, and we are thrilled that Marc is getting this recognition.”

During the season, the infielder earned ECC Player and Rookie of the Week honors on five different occasions, and became the second ECC player to be named Player and Rookie of the Year in the same season. To further solidify his position in the Queens College history books, he was named to the ECC All-Conference First Team, the Division II Conference Commissioners Association All-East Region First Team, National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association Second Team All-East Region First Team and American Baseball Coaches Association/Rawlings All-East Region First Team. He was ranked 12th nationally for his batting average — an impressive .435 — and tied for team home runs at 10.

Since 1998, only 10 student-athletes have earned All-American honors in softball, baseball, women’s basketball, and mens and women’s tennis. Cisco will join them, generating anticipation for the rest of his career with the Knights.

Brother-Duo to Lead St. John’s Lacrosse

Photo Courtesy / Red Storm Sports

As a first-year head coach of the St. John’s lacrosse team, Justin Turri has quite a job ahead of him. Following a season that generated only two wins from fourteen outings, the Johnnies have proven to be a team in desperate need of strong leadership and guidance. In a search for a partner to help him lead, Turri has turned to his brother Kyle Turri to fill the role of assistant coach for the 2022-23 year, serving as a defensive coordinator for the Red Storm. 

“[Kyle] will fit in seamlessly with the identity we are building as a program and has proven through his stops at Binghamton and Hobart that he recruits at the absolute highest level,” Justin Turri said in a press release. “His addition is another major victory for our players and program.” 

Turri spent the last four years as the defensive coordinator at Hobart and William Smith College, whose lacrosse team is the only Division I program at the college. While there, Hobart compiled a record of 28-15 and finished runner up in the Northeast Conference in two of the last three conference championships. 

Justin Turri landed the role as head coach recently, being announced by the Red Storm Athletic Department on June 17. A New York native, he returned to his home state after serving as the offensive coordinator at Michigan. 

Both Turri brothers were players themselves at Duke University, Justin being a two-time all American. While together, they won back-to-back national titles in 2013-14. Once again, the duo will take the field, but in coaching gear instead of jerseys.

“Having a tie as close as a brother in the profession is very unique,” Justin Turri said. “I have always admired Kyle’s work ethic, energy, and the way in which he installs and directs a defense.” 

The announcement for Kyle to join his brother came on July 20, ten days before the lacrosse program is hosting their ‘Red Storm ID Clinic’ for prospective student-athletes. Hosted at DaSilva Memorial Field, the home to the Red Storm, the camp is open to all players going into grades 10-12 — the years in which recruiting is at its greatest for Division I schools. 

As per NCAA regulations, Division I and Division II college coaches are not allowed to contact student-athletes prior to September 1 of their junior year. However, eyes on our players their sophomore year, and through this camp the Johnnies will be able to check out players they otherwise would not be able to interact with. Naturally, head coach Turri would want his brother at his side for this crucial part of recruiting — he will be coaching at the ID Clinic, according to graduate assistant Kevin Wehner.

The camp is from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m., and costs $175. Each player will receive a reversible jersey to wear that day, along with a t-shirt upon departure. Registration can be accessed through redstormsports.com.

Pol Position: AOC absent or is Ramos full of hot air?

State Senator Jessica Ramos recently slammed Representative Alexandria Ocasio Cortez for being ‘absent’ in the district.

The debacle started on Monday after a British medical student tweeted that AOC’s staff dismissed NHS experts, telling them that “they were doing healthcare right now.” AOC tried to address the issue saying that it was antithetical to her values. (A representative for AOC told The New York Post that they werent able to identify the meeting referenced in the tweet.)

“Maybe if you spent more time in your office and with your team you’d know what goes on,” Ramos, the left-leaning local politician who represents overlapping Queens neighborhoods tweeted.

“She’s barely ever present in the community. It’s an indisputable fact,” Ramos, who shares an office building with the congresswoman added in a follow-up tweet.

DSA-affiliated pols like Brooklyn State Senator Julia Salazar, Brooklyn State Senator Jabari Brisport, and Queens Assemblyman Zohran Kwame Mamdani came to AOC’s defense on Monday night.

“Respectfully… I don’t think New York State Senators, who are only expected to be in Albany for like 70 days/year (or less), can expect a member of congress (who also rep districts like 3X larger than our districts) to be in one neighborhood in their district as often as we are,” Salazar tweeted.

“Respectfully, she ran on breathing our air,” Ramos replied. In AOC’s original 2018 campaign, she released an ad stating that someone who “doesn’t drink our water or breathe our air cannot possibly represent us,” critiquing the then-long-time incumbent as out of touch with the district.

Ramos added that she has gotten better facetime and support from local officials like Congresswoman Grace Meng than she has out of her Astoria counterpart.

Brooklyn State Senator Jabari Brisport hit back against Senator Ramos, tweeting a photo of Ramos and AOC from March, with Ramos’ own words:  “I have not spoken to my congressperson in months. Maybe more than a year?”

Ramos called Brisport’s tweet disingenuous, as it was an event and not the same as a conversation or meeting.

Queens needs better bike lanes

If listening to DOT spokespeople has taught us anything, it’s that “jersey barriers” and “baffle walls” are the appropriate lingo to use for a cement barrier.

It is something that Transportation officials really need to consider with regards to the “protected bike lanes,” because it’s apparent they are not very well protected at all.

Creating an interborough bike network is a fantastic idea, but DOT really needs to weigh its options when it comes to the implementation because there are some serious issues with some major thoroughfares in Queens.

For instance, placing bike lanes along Queens Boulevard really needs to be reexamined. They seem out of place along “the Boulevard of Death,” without some sort of physical buffer between the street traffic and bike traffic.

They have concrete dividers between cyclists and drivers in places like Downtown Brooklyn and parts of Lower Manhattan, where they have proven to be effective.

Earlier this year, DOT announced plans to fortify these delineated bike lanes, but thus far little has been done to deploy jersey barriers in Queens, with the first half of the project focused on Manhattan.

However, at other locations like Cooper Avenue in Glendale or Skillman Avenue in Sunnyside, there is literally nothing separating cyclists and motorists whatsoever. Just a few painted lines signifying where the lanes begin and end.

The way the “protected” bike lanes are currently situated poses a serious hazard to both motor vehicle operators and cyclists. The existing plastic road dividers do little to nothing to stop a speeding vehicle from charging into the pathway.

With the added use of e-bikes and scooters, these already busy thoroughfares have become even more treacherous for pedestrians. Dozens of irresponsible cyclists and drivers will blow through red lights, zip through pedestrian crosswalks at excessive speed, and sometimes people will even pop up onto the sidewalks.

To make matters worse, on any given day, there are guaranteed to be a few motorcycles and moped riders jumping in and out of the bike lanes in order to evade vehicular traffic patterns.

State traffic laws do allow for e-bikes and scooters to use the designated bike lanes, but they do not allow mopeds, motorcycles, ATVs, or any other form of vehicle that are required to be registered with the DMV.

Even though operating these vehicles in the bike lane is a violation, law enforcement doesn’t seem to be doing much to prevent this from happening. This is why people continue to do it.

Without penalties, people think its perfectly acceptable to drive their 40 mph mopeds in and out of the lanes and onto the sidewalks, not realizing that they’re still going fast enough to cause serious harm to cyclists, pedestrians, and drivers.

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