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Forest Hills Residents to Beautify Neighborhood for Earth Day

By Ewa Kern-Jedrychowska | April 16, 2013 11:35am

QUEENS — A group of Forest Hills residents is planning to celebrate the upcoming Earth Day by beautifying the area and planting pansies and begonias along Continental Avenue and Austin Street, the group said.

Members of The Forest Hills Green Team will gather on Saturday, April 20, in efforts to spruce up the neighborhood.

“We need to clear the tree pits along Continental Avenue,” said Stephen Melnick who started the group about 10 years ago. “We will add top soil and mulch and we'll be putting new plants.”

The group, with the support of the Parks Department and local councilwoman Karen Koslowitz, hopes to also get a hand from local businesses and banks, said Melnick, 50, who works for HSBC. He said he hopes they will donate some plants and materials.

Melnick, who has also been involved with getting trees planted on Queens Boulevard, said he initiated the efforts because “it’s good for the community.”

“This is a very busy area,” said Melnick who has lived in Forest Hills for about 23 years. “It’s also a historic area and it has tree guards around the trees. Why don’t we plant something to make it look nice?”

The group is looking for volunteers willing to help. The cleanup will take place on Saturday, April 20, between 9 a.m. and 12 p.m. All supplies and gloves will be provided.