1 2 3 4

Flushing Town Hall celebrates 160th anniversary

Flushing Town Hall celebrated the 160th anniversary of its historic facility on Northern Boulevard. To commemorate the occasion, Flushing Town Hall held its “Happy Birthday Gala” on June 9th honoring New York City Council Speaker Adrienne Adams and CUNY Queens College President Frank H. Wu.

More than 125 people were in attendance for the historic event, which helped raise funds to support the landmarked building’s operations. The evening was filled with music, performances, networking, and an awards dinner in the renowned institution’s grand theater.

Howard Gilman Foundation Program Officer Emily Sproch (Photos By Dominick Totino)

While the Town Hall limited attendance this year, out of an abundance of caution due to the pandemic, it happily held its first in-person event since 2019.

“In spite of everything, culture never closed, and the arts are essential,” Flushing Town Hall Executive and Artistic Director Ellen Kodadek said. “It’s very simple actually, that’s what you can count on us for here at Flushing Town Hall.”

In attendance were Queens Borough President Donovan Richards, New York City Councilwoman Sandra Ung, New York State Sentator John Liu, Assemblyman Khaleel Anderson, and a representative for Council Speaker Adrienne Adams.

When attendees arrived, they were greeted by The Hellfighters—an ensemble created by Black, Harlem-based artists-educator Elijah J. Thomas—before enjoying performances by the New York Chinese Chours, and a “Global Mashup” featuring seven of New York’s finest musicians including Abdulaye Diop, Alioune Fayé, Frank London, Meg Okura, Arcoiris Sandoval, Cillian Vallely, and Jennifer Vincent, who were representing regions from all over the world, including Senegal, Mexico, and Asia.

The Gala was co-chaired by Flushing Town Hall Board Members Pauline Huang and Timothy Chen. Sponsors included Veronica Y. Tsang, Queens College, City University of New York, Raymond Jasen, Graf & Lewent Architects, Tai Wang/WAC Lighting/Glow Cultural Center/Glow Foundation, Viviana Benitez, TeHsing Niu, Emily Lin/Lin + Loveall Foundation, and New York-Presbyterian Queens.

During the event, Flushing Town Hall honored New York City Council Speaker Adrienne Adams, the first Black woman to hold the position and proud representative of the 28th District in Queens. Robbie Welsh, co-director of the community outreach unit / community engagement division of the New York City Council Speaker’s Office, represented Adams, who was unable to attend due to budget negotiations.

Co-Director of the Community Outreach Unit/Community Engagement Division of the New York City Council Speaker’s Office Robbie Welsh

“Your stewardship of this historic institution has made Flushing Town Hall a welcome destination for residents of all ages to watch concerts, dance, theater, and much more,” Welsh said.

The second honoree, Queens College President Frank H. Wu, praised Flushing Town Hall for being a beacon of culture in the borough. “Through concerts and jam sessions,” he said, “Flushing Town Hall has helped to establish this borough as a home for jazz. That is the United States’ musical gift to the world: American classical music.”

During the evening, Howard Gilman Foundation Program Officer Emily Sproch called Flushing Town Hall “a very bright spot in this City’s cultural ecosystem,” announcing that the foundation made a $160,000 gift to Flushing Town Hall.

“One thousand dollars for each year of its impressive life,” Sproch said. “So happy birthday Flushing Town Hall, may you continue to be blessed, and may you continue to share these blessings with this remarkable community.”

Flushing Town Hall is a Smithsonian affiliate, which presents multi-disciplinary global arts that engage and educate the global communities of Queens and New York City in order to foster mutual appreciation. As advocates of arts equity since 1979, Flushing Town Hall supports local, immigrant, national, and international artists, developing partnerships, and collaborations that enhance its efforts. Part of the New York City’s Cultural Institutions Group, it serves to restore, manage and program the historic 1862 landmark on behalf of the City of New York. Flushing Town Hall iscommitted to arts education and hands-on learning, for the arts-curious, art enthusiasts, and professional artists. They continue to serve one of the most diverse communities in the world and strive to uphold the legacy of inclusiveness that has defined the community since the Flushing Remonstrance of 1657.

Maspeth Federal Savings turns 75

Maspeth Federal Savings was joined by the community in celebration of its 75th anniversary.

Around 100 residents, students, and local elected officials gathered at the Maspeth location ⁠—the site of the original storefront that first opened in 1947 with a staff of only seven employees.

President and CEO Thomas Rudzewick said that Maspeth Federal Savings has grown to become an institution with seven different locations, nearly 200 employees, and $2.2 billion in assets over the last 75 years.

“We stayed to our mission. We wanted to make sure that this institution was a safe place to put your deposits and to get your home loan,” he said.

“Our mission is to create and maintain a professional environment that fosters the confidence of our board of directors, invites the ideas of our employees and exceeds the expectations of our customers,” he continued. “We are here to treat you like family, and we hope all of you feel the same way from myself and the board of directors that are here today.”

Queens Borough President Donovan Richards, NYS Assemblyman Brian Barnwell, and Councilman Robert Holden congratulated Maspeth Federal Savings on their achievements and presented them with citations.

“Maspeth Federal Savings has become a trusted financial institution admired for its fiscal management and deep commitment to the community,” Richards said.“Thank you for contributing to financial literacy for community based organizations. Think about the impact that this has had on families and businesses, and how it has kept Queens such a vibrant borough.”

In the spirit of family, the St. Stan’s Players gave a musical performance, which included Sister Sledge’s 1979 hit, “We Are Family.”

Upon pointing out that the bank’s former President and CEO Kenneth Rudzewick, has a story quite similar to George Bailey from “It’s a Wonderful Life,” Holden said: “It’s rare that a bank is the center of the community for all celebrations, but Maspeth Federal has always been that. That’s because of men like Kenny and Tom Rudzewick.”

“With your help over the last 75 years, you did make living in Maspeth and the surrounding communities a wonderful life,” Holden said.

Let them attend

Dear Editor,
The decision to not invite all first responders and other emergency workers to this year’s 20th Anniversary of the September 11th terror attacks is inexplicable.
Many of these people were there when the attacks occurred and they have been coming to the ceremony every single year, except in 2020 due to the pandemic. It is a veiled insult to every single first responder in our city.
All of our first responders should be allowed to attend this year’s ceremony.
Sincerely,
John Amato
Fresh Meadows

Fill the Form for Events, Advertisement or Business Listing