Queens Offers Entertainment To Suit Every Taste
New York City has always been a town that knows how to throw a party, and starting this week, the city is host to two of the biggest bashes to come our way in a long while. The Republican Party national convention will be held in Madison Square Garden starting August 30, and the legendary US Open, a leading light in the world of international tennis tournaments, will occupy every court at the US Tennis Center in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park from August 30 through September 12.
We welcome these two events. This is an ideal city for any kind of convention and we’re glad that the GOP decided to pay us a visit so they can experience all the delights of New York City. The same goes for the tennis players and their loyal adherents. Only New York City is big and bold enough to be able to accommodate these two affairs at once.
There’s plenty to see and do in the Big Apple. While our distinguished guests are visiting, we think they’d enhance the pleasure of their stay by a trip to this branch of the apple tree on the eastern shores of the East River. It’s a safe, short subway ride away and well worth the trip. Starting from the Queensboro Plaza subway stop on the N and W lines and its underground counterpart, the Queens Plaza station on the Number 7 and R, V, E and F lines, long regarded as the doorway to Queens, there’s a fascinating world here waiting to be discovered.
Aside from its renown as the largest Greek community outside Athens, Astoria is one of the most diverse communities in the United States, with more than 127 languages spoken on its streets by new Americans who have come here from some 140 different countries. Like the rest of the borough of Queens, Astoria offers the convention delegate or the tennis spectator a chance to see the world without leaving New York City.
Flushing Meadows-Corona Park holds much more than the US Tennis Center. The Queens Museum holds among other treasures the New York City Panorama, a scale model of New York City that has fascinated visitors for decades. The New York Hall of Science has all manner of exhibits and programs to explain the world in which we live. Young children will find the Science Playground a fascinating place. Queens Theater In the Park has a schedule of performances to suit every taste. The Queens Zoo offers visitors a rare opportunity to view animals in their native habitats. Besides, as former Borough President Claire Shulman noted, you can see it all in one afternoon, making it far easier on feet and temper than many larger wildlife conservation centers. Nearly all parks in Queens, including Alley Pond Evironmental Center and Gateway National Park, are easily reached by subway or bus.
Queens abounds in the performing arts and the borough is rife with concert and drama performance venues. This newspaper’s calendar listings hold a goodly number of such endeavors. They’re all low-cost or free and well worth a look. The visual arts are also well represented here. Socrates Sculpture Park, at the foot of Broadway at the East River, as just one example, is a great place to look at some of the latest and best offerings of contemporary sculpture, and a great place for a picnic lunch from one of the many delicatessens or restaurants in the area. Movie buffs and anyone else curious about how a film reaches the silver screen will find an afternoon at the American Museum of the Moving Image on 35th Avenue time well spent.
The rest of the borough has as much, if not more, to offer. The Queens County Farm Museum, the only working farm remaining in what was once the vegetable garden for Manhattan, lets visitors spend a day in the country without leaving the city. Historic King Manor and the Quaker Meeting House offer glimpses into America’s past and insights into the principles on which the country was founded. The Queens Botanical Garden shows why the borough can lay claim to being one of the cradles of American horticulture. The self-guided Queens Jazz tour provides a look at the homes and performance venues of the musicians who helped create a truly American art form.
There are many more exciting and interesting things to see and do in Queens than we can list in this space. We’ve barely scratched the surface. We hope that during their stay here the convention delegates and tennis buffs will pay the borough a call. To everyone, whoever they are and whatever their reason for visiting New York City, welcome!