Friday, February 21, 2014

A look at the RKO Keith's of Flushing over time


Anonymous said...

Sad. Many memories for me of the Keith's.

Anonymous said...

Nice tribute. A shme what those people have done to that neighborhood. It used to be a beautiful place to live.

Anonymous said...

My mom used to do dance recitals on the stages there as a child. The marble work that made up the lobby was truly a sight to see. As a kid, took my first date there.

What a shame, all the beautiful things destroyed along with the history.

Unfortunately, what people don't remember is how bad Flushing was becoming. It came back from the dead, but at a price.

Anonymous said...

Very sad. This is what you get when you hand over an entire neighborhood to poor,uneducated, low class individuals and greedy Asian developers who have no history and no ties to that neighborhood. Throw in some local scumbag leaders, and you have yourself one hot mess. We ought to have mass deportation in Flushing and clear the place out. Take out ALL the trash. Only then can some semblance of respect and decorum be restored to downtown to Flushing. SAVE THE RKO KEITHS!

Anonymous said...

No one forced the people out. Their greed took over and the land/property owners sold to the highest bidder. You folks are fooling yourselves if you or your neighbors wouldn't do the same given the chance.

But go ahead, blame immigrants and Asians because they got all of this for free. Yeah.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said..."But go ahead, blame immigrants and Asians because they got all of this for free. Yeah."

Yeah ! Some do get it for free !
How about all the tax free churches on every block west of 154th St. and 35th Avenue ?
What about all the illegal apartments that I'm sure are not being reported as income to the IRS !

Jerry Rotondi said...

Blame Claire Shulman!
in 1986 our CommitteeTo Save The RKO Keith's Theatre Of Flushing Inc. submitted over 3,500 petition signatures certified mail return receipt to reinstate the full interior municipal landmark designation that her crooked boss Donald Manes had shot down.

she did not support it.
Copies were also sent to the LPC and the mayor but without Shulmans support the NYC Landmarks preservation Commision would not would not act.

the decay and betrayal of community is her legacy to history.

She will be remembered for her treachery .

Anonymous said...

Right on the money!
Shulman is a low down dog....Manes' apt pupil.
Contrast what Brooklyn borough president Marty Markowitz has done for the Loews Kings movie palace.
History gets preserved in Brooklyn. In the hands of our borough presidents it gets obliterated.

Queens is a developers borough...the wild west ...Deadwood!

Anonymous said...

Why is Michael Nussbaum...whom the Daily News once called "Manes's bag man" representing the current owner (number 4) of the Keiths as he had done for Patrick Thompson?

The old Manes gang is still in the picture.
I would not be surprised if they are shilling for Tommy Huang's son or himself.
Wouldn't that be something?

the Flushing Phantom said...

Flushing is now a ghetto!
It too is Gone With The Wind as the movie poster says!

Anonymous said...

I guess that Robert Peck didn't give a crap when he sold the store his father Irwin started...Pecks office supply store? The community sold itself out too! Greed rules the roost!

Jerry Rotondi said...

If you want to recapture an RKO Keith's movie palace experience, go to the Loew's Jersey in Jersey City as I now do.
Yes it is certainly a pity that I have to travel to another state to get what we all had right here in Flushing.

A quick trip to Journal Square on the PATH line makes it worth visiting the Loew's Jersey.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps a quick death would have been better for the theater than suffering lingering decay.

Anonymous said...

I predict the the partial landmark designation will be overturned in 3 years.

Anonymous said...

The inv-Asian of Flushing helped to bring it down!
Manes and Huang were coconspirators.

Those "wonderful" folks at CB7 just want it all to go away.

"Im tired", moans "follow the buck" Chuck Apelian.
"Groan" I've had a few too many", says Gene "the 80 proof machine" Kelty.

Anonymous said...

We can still observe foul toads filling Flushing with political that big lie that continues to be foisted upon the public...that "Flushing was blighted" and the Asians have rescued it from the pit.

It WAS NOT blighted. The old businesses were just being turned over by its elderly original owners.
Many were retiring.

Flushing was just in a period of natural flux during the 1970s.

The arriving Taiwanese (like Tommy Huang) were certainly not its saviors...
h-m-m-m...except maybe to prevent a much feared African American takeover (by paranoid xenophobic local real estate moguls).

These old landowners cringed at the thought of Flushing becoming another south Bronx or south Jamaica and "ruining" the value of their holdings.

THAT'S THE REAL TRUTH OF THE MATTER...if anyone bothers to read between the lines.

Thus, the Asians were given carte blanche by the pols and local community board who looked the other way while all kinds of laws were being broken.

Anonymous said...

I believe most of the new residents in Flushing were not aware of the situation at all. I am a relatively new resident for Flushing, coming in during the late 1990s. I have always wondered why a building of such magnitude was being abandoned like so. Back in the days when I was a teenager, the only word I heard from my mother was "oh, it was a theatre of some sort" ,and that was it. I imagined it as being your typical movie theatre in the modern days, and I just thought the entire situation was due to some silly landlord disputes. My parents even discussed about this theatre taking up such a big space and not contributing any value to the community at all. All of us were never aware of what it was, and the history behind it.

No one ever wrote in major ethnic newspapers of why it mattered much, and these locally produced newspapers are probably the key to let the contemporary Flushing community be aware of the situations. If you want the residents of Flushing stand up and fight for this, you need to embrace them and let them know who you are, and what RKO was all about.

As for all of your commenters who just use racial profiling to summarize the reason why no one wants to save RKO Flushing: I am raised as an Asian American in Flushing, and my parents sent me to Laguardia High School of Arts with ENORMOUS pride. I am stressing my alma mater here to prove you wrong: Asian Americans raised in Flushing DO appreciate arts and history.

Dear Blog owner: If you still care about RKO, please send me an email to lagmeiathotmaildotcom and let me know what I can do to help. I am fluent in Mandarin, Cantonese, and English; I am excellent at social media in Chinese and English; I got a fine arts degree from Laguardia High School; I love Sheila Stember, my AP art history teacher at Laguardia. She taught me all about Baroque and modern Baroque. Utilize me now.

Thanks, Mei