Ardila raises over $40K in latest filing

City Council candidate Juan Ardila has raised over $40,000 in his campaign to unseat incumbent Councilman Bob Holden.

According to the latest filings, Ardila has raised nearly $41,000, and received another $74,000 in matching funds.

Holden, by contrast, has also raised nearly $43,000, putting the two campaigns in good positions moving forward in the race.

According to Ardila’s campaign, he had over 500 individual donations and 160 in-district donors. The average contribution size was $76.

“It’s clear that our campaign is continuing to build the kind of grassroots movement we need to not only win this race, but create a people-powered agenda that will help us solve the many problem our district faces,” he said.

Ardila has racked up endorsements from the Working Families Party, State Senators Jessica Ramos and Michael Gianaris, Councilman Brad Lander, SEIU 1199, Make the Road Action, Run for Something and Churches United for Fair Housing.

New York Blood Center, Mets host blood drive at Atlas

The New York Mets and the New York Blood Center are teaming up today for the 2021 Mets Fan Blood Drive.

Mets fans and all interested blood donors can donate at one of five locations in Queens, including The Shops at Atlas Park between 10 a.m. and 7 p.m.

Donors will receive a voucher for a pair of tickets to see the Mets, a free limited edition fan t-shirt and an entry into a sweepstakes for signed memorabilia.

Usually held at Citi Field, the semi-annual blood drive is being at five locations to better control the size of the crowds and facilitate social distancing.

“The vaccine has shown us a light at the end of the tunnel, but we need New Yorkers to come together to help build and sustain the blood supply,” said Andrea Cefarelli, senior executive director of recruitment and marketing for New York Blood Center. “We’re grateful to the Mets for their support and I encourage all eligible New Yorkers—Yankees fans included!—to come out and give.”

Make an appointment by visiting

Holden joins council’s Public Safety Committee

File Photo

In the last year of his first term, Councilman Bob Holden has joined the City Council’s Public Safety Committee.

He currently chairs the Committee on Technology.

“If we don’t have public safety in our city, we don’t have anything,” he said. “Our city has lost its way, as many of our elected officials have turned their backs on public safety policies that kept the city safer for decades.”

The Public Safety Committee, chaired by fellow Queens Councilwoman Adrienne Adams, includes jurisdiction over the NYPD, Civilian Complaint Review Board, Mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice, courts, district attorneys, and the Office of the Special Narcotics Prosecutor.

The committee was previously chaired by then-Councilman and now Queens Borough President Donovan Richards.

Other City Council members in the committee include Keith Powers, Ydanis Rodriguez, Kevin Riley, Fernando Cabrera, Vanessa Gibson, I. Daneek Miller, Carlos Menchaca and Chaim Deutsch.

“I will be a voice of reason,” Holden added, “fighting for common-sense policy and safer streets for my constituents and for all New Yorkers.”

City Council candidate Juan Ardila endorsed by Gianaris

State Senator Michael Gianaris

A City Council candidate challenging Robert Holden to represent the district has been backed by an influential Democrat.

Juan Ardila was endorsed by Michael Gianaris, the deputy leader of the New York State Senate who also represents a sliver of Ridgewood.

Others who have backed Ardila’s bid to unseat Holden include State Senator Jessica Ramos, Councilman Brad Lander, the NY Working Families Party, SEIU 1199, Make the Road Action, CVH Power, Run for Something and Open NY.

Ardila, the son of a Colombian father and Honduran-Cuban mother, is the first Latino candidate in District 30’s history. If elected, he would be the first Colombian-American to serve in the City Council.

He worked for Lander before becoming a consultant for the Department of Education. He now works at a legal services nonprofit as a program coordinator.

Ardila is an alum of St. Adalberts, Archbishop Molloy High School, Fordham University and NYU.

Ridgewood’s Edward Grayson is the new DSNY commissioner

The new leader of the NYC Department of Sanitation knows Ridgewood’s streets well.

Before the start of the new year, Mayor de Blasio appointed Edward Grayson, who grew up in Ridgewood, as the commissioner of DSNY. He served as acting commissioner since September.

Grayson is a 21-year veteran of the department, and has a family history with DSNY. His dad was a sanitation worker and supervisor, while his mom was the recycling outreach coordinator during the 90s.

Before being appointed acting commissioner, Grayson was a four-star chief and director of the Bureau of Cleaning and Collection. He oversaw the day-to-day operations for the agency, including the collection, recycling and disposal of more than 12,000 tons of waste every day.

“Growing up in Ridgewood, everyone in my neighborhood had a plan for how they’d someday serve the people of New York,” Grayson said, “as so many of our parents did, including my own.”

We wish him luck as he leads New York’s Strongest!

Another chance to volunteer at Ridgewood Reservoir

There’s no better way to start the new year than volunteering your time to help with landscaping at the Ridgewood Reservoir.

On Saturday, January 9 at 10 a.m., NYC H2O and the Parks Department will rake leaves and clear the bluestone border on the East Causeway.

They’re looking for volunteers to help out between 10 a.m. and noon. Gloves, garbage bags and rakes will be provided.

Be sure to wear a mask and maintain six feet of social distancing between participants.

Meet at the parking lot on Vermont Place, across the street from the reservoir.

Register for the event here.

Holden seeks four more years in City Council

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Councilman Robert Holden wants a shot at four more years in office.

Holden announced that he’s running for re-election in 2021, hoping for a chance to represent District 30 (Maspeth, Middle Village, Glendale, Ridgewood) again in the City Council.

In a video announcement released Tuesday, Holden said the city has lost its way, and many elected officials have abandoned the policies that kept the streets safe for decades.

“City Hall has tried to govern with protest slogans instead of common sense,” he says in the video. “I have been one of the few voices in the council to stand up to the de Blasio agenda.”

Holden is touting his first-term battles with de Blasio, including speaking out about the mayor’s plans to close Rikers Island, the mayor’s homeless policies, his handling of the coronavirus, mishandling ThriveNYC funds and attempting to get rid of the specialized high school admissions test.

“Over these past three years, I have never stopped fighting for you,” Holden said. “We’ve done a lot together these last three years, and there’s a lot more we need to do.”

For his second and last term, should he win in 2021, Holden said he pledges to deliver on quality of life issues, help the city recover from COVID, create a better environment for small businesses and reverse the rise in crime and homelessness.

A holiday market is coming to Atlas Park

The Shops at Atlas Park. Image courtesy of Google Maps

Leaders of the Glendale Chamber of Commerce have set up a holiday market from Friday, December 18 to Wednesday, December 23 at The Shops at Atlas Park.

The seasonal market will take place on the lawn at the shopping center. There will be two tents, heated and decorated with Christmas themes.

Staff will be dressed up as Santa’s elves to help everyone find what they’re looking for.

The goal of the holiday market, according to organizers, is to keep the holiday cheer alive and help people through this time of struggle.

Here are the rules of the market due to COVID:

  • Only 10 people allowed into each tent at a time
  • Everyone’s temperature will be checked at the entrance
  • All vendor tables will be set up 6 feet apart
  • Everyone must wear face masks at all times

To contribute to the event, donate to the GoFundMe campaign here.

Ridgewood man sentenced to 21 years for fatal stabbing

Dahe Lin, 77, has been sentenced to 21 years in prison for fatally stabbing his daughter-in-law in broad daylight outside of their Ridgewood home in March 2019.

Lin, who lives on Suydam Street, pleaded guilty to manslaughter last month. He has been sentenced to 21 years behind bars followed by five years’ post-release supervision.

According to District Attorney Melinda Katz, Lin was seen choking Wen Ying He outside their Ridgewood home. A witness intervened and pulled the man off her. Lin then ran back inside to grab a kitchen knife, which he used to stab her repeatedly in the neck.

Another passerby saw the bloodshed and flagged down a police car, leading to Lin’s arrest. He died in the hospital several days later.

“This was an unimaginably horrific crime,” Katz said. “The defendant has admitted his guilt and will be punished for taking the life of his daughter-in-law.”

Stop & Shop opens new pickup location in Glendale

New Stop & Shop pickup location at 89-89 Union Turnpike. Image courtesy of Google Maps.

Stop & Shop has launched another pickup location in Queens, this one at 89-89 Union Turnpike in Glendale.

This site joins the Maspeth location, at 74-17 Grand Avenue, where shoppers can place an order ahead of time and a Stop & Shop associate will load groceries right into their cars on site.

Shoppers can place an order on the website or on the Stop & Shop mobile app. Click on “order online” and select “pickup” at the preferred location.

After choosing a pickup time, shoppers can park in a designated pickup spot and call to let the store know that they have arrived. The associate will then drop off the groceries.

Customers are asked to have their trunk or door open for associates to place directly into the car. Customers are also encouraged to wear masks and limit the number of people in the car where possible.

A $30 minimum is required on all pickup orders, and a $2.95 service fee will be applied at checkout.