The cliché about LA is “there is no there, there”--If its true, it's because all the there's are here in Queens!
NYC, unlike many east coast cities is physically huge-it annexed acrage—LOTS OF IT.
The 5 boro's all have different characteristic—and Queens is, well, the most mixed bag!
It large (110 square miles), At parts, it's the most urban (with skycrapers), in other parts, the most rural, there is, --abeit a very small one-- a working farm, and a farm museum. At no point is it suburban—but lots of parts are small town-ish.
I live in central Queens, but I have lived in 3 part of Queens over my lifetime.
Weekly, I travel a few miles (and world away!) from my multi ethnic neighborhood to join a group of knitters in LIC (Long Island City).
LIC is technically a huge chunk of Queens, but it is subdivided into other neighborhoods, like Astoria, Ravenswood, Queensboro Plaza, Dutch Kills (kills is an obsolete Dutch work for a spring or small water way) and other neighborhoods
The part of LIC that is called LIC is neighborhood in transition. Changing from small row homes, small walk up apartments (many with 12 foot ceiling!) and light industry, to a much more upscale area. With luxury apartments that sell for $500,000 and up (for a 1 bedroom apartment!)
Along the way, Artist have lead the change. They moved in (starting with sculptor Nuguchi, more than 30 years ago) and opened studios and galleries. Collectors came, and found the neighborhood, and the rebuild started. Industries moved out, and industrial space became more studio's. Some old warehouses and manufacturing got torn down, more luxury housing went in.
Now, older residents, live in small neat houses, cheek by jowl next to over sized luxury housing.
The good new is Change! The bad new is Change!
LIC is home to the Silvercup studios—so its not unusual to see celebrities in the neighborhood--
and many of the local residents are support staff to TV and movies productions –providing the prop's, or costumes, or other stuff (electrical work, set painting, and so on)
For the next 10 days, LIC will be home to the LIC ARTS OPEN—A 3 square (well no, not square, triangular really!) mile Arts extravaganza.
I plan to participate as I love(and do) best—as audience—there's a lot of places just waiting for me to show up!
If you are in the NYMetro area, why don't you come join me?
LIC is not just an arts community—its slowly becoming one of the greener areas of NYC.
There are parks, and community gardens, and kayaking, and bike paths—there is the water front (and great view of the Manhattan skyline), there is history—Lots of history—LIC was the home to the Borden Farm (as in Borden MILK) and it's home to the Newton Pippin (an excellent archival apple), and lots more.