By Dee Richard
On Tuesday the Queens County Overall Economic Development Corporation held a fund-raiser at the Diamond Club at Shea Stadium. It was called “A Taste of the World” with over 30 restaurants, beverage and food purveyors participating.
Like the name implied, it seemed every country in the world was represented. The problem, of course, was which foods to sample, as you could not possibly try them all. It was a food lover’s paradise. If you want to have diversity in your quest for ethnic foods, then Queens is the place to go.
Live music was provided throughout the evening courtesy of Steinway & Sons. Dennis Tortora, Steinway vice president, had a baby grand piano brought in for the evening. Everyone had the opportunity to be a critic of the food. At the end of the evening they voted on four categories. I. The best appetizer went to London Lennies of Rego Park. 2. The best entrée went to Papazzio of Bayside, 3. The best dessert went to Durso’s of Flushing 4. The best beverage was won by Dazies of Sunnyside and the Manhattan beer distributors of New York City’s five boroughs.
The awards were given out by Queens Borough President Helen Marshall, Gail Roseman president of QCOEDC, and Joseph Bechtold, event chairman, as well as representatives of the various sponsors. Spotted in the crowd as well were George Rozarisky, Terri Tompson, Eileen Auld, Moustafa Elshiekh, Jackie Arrington and her husband Roy Pinkard, Carol Simon, Greg Murphy, April Dubison, Robert Nyman, Christopher Blumlo, Chris Iladi and Terry Osbourne.
On Saturday afternoon a memorial tree was planted in Kissena Park. State Sen. Frank Padavan, Assemblyman Barry Grodenchick, and Councilman John Liu were all present as well as the local civic association members. A Barry Grodenchick update: Barry informed me at the tree planting that he is in contract for a home in Cedar Grove, which will locate him in his district. John Liu’s son Joey was enjoying a Carvel on a warm summer day as his Dad said say hello to “Auntie Dee.” Joey had a birthday on Tuesday May 6. Happy 2 1/2 Birthday, Joey, from your Aunt Dee.
Melinda Katz had a fund-raiser on Sunday at Pasta Del Giorno on Austin Street in Forest Hills. State Comptroller Alan Hevesi, Jack Chartier, Helen Marshall, Betsey Gotbaum, Danny Dromm, Honey Miller, Martha Taylor, (Debbie Markell, Cathy and Rudy Giuliani (Mayor Rudy’s cousin), Michael Cohen, Toby Stavisky, Brian McLaughlin and Uma Sen Gupta were among the notables present. Council Speaker Giff Miller and fellow council members were not present as they were all at City Hall working on the budget
On Sunday night David Weprin had a combination birthday party at which he announced that he is running again for his Councilmanic seat. His wife Ronnie and three of their five children, David’s brothers Mark and Barry were there as well as mom Sylvia and her husband. Giff Miller was able to make this party as well as Leroy Comrie, Oliver Kopell, John Liu and his son Joey, Brian McLaughlin and his daughter Meaghan, Martha Taylor, Carlisle Towery, Mustafa Elshiekh, Chet Szarejko, Betsy Gotbaum, Uma Sen Gupta, Thomas Chen, Hank Yeh, Morshed Alam, Vic Mimone, Jim Rodgers, Elliot Zaretsky. Marc Haken, Arthur Plug, and Yvonne Reddick. A Reddick update: She says that she is definitely running against Allen Jennings.
Diccia Pineda-Kirwan tells us that while on her vacation in the Dominican Republic, she was invited to a luncheon with the president of the Dominican Republic and Hillary and Bill Clinton -pretty impressive!
The Queens Chamber of Commerce sponsored its annual legislative breakfast at the Citicorp Bank Building in Long Island City. As well as the usual cadre of elected officials, New York State Attorney General Elliott Spitzer and Queens County Democratic Chairman Tom Manton were also present.
An update on the Frank episode: Apparently Tony Avella read the my column and took Frank seriously when he was quoted as saying he was “going to support Tony Avella,” according to Vic Mimone of the Little Neck Douglaston Memorial Day Parade Committee. Tony is putting Frank on his steering committee.
Save the date, Sunday, May 18, the Little Neck Douglaston Memorial Day Parade Organization is having its annual luncheon at the Kings Point Merchant Marine Academy. The group has a Web site with information about the upcoming May 26 Memorial Day Parade at www.memorialdayparade.org
Also save the date Thursday, May 22. The Bayside Republican Club is having a cocktail party at the Reception House in Flushing to celebrate its new name change to the Northeast Queens Republican Club.
If you care to share information about upcoming events or information, call me at 718-767 6484 or fax me at 718-746 0066.
Till next week, Dee