Presentation will compare Woodhaven, then & now
by Ed Wendell
Apr 16, 2014 | 2684 views | 0 0 comments | 71 71 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A Woodhaven home separated by 60 years.
A Woodhaven home separated by 60 years.
The Woodhaven Cultural & Historical Society will host a free slideshow on Monday, April 21, at 7 p.m. at Neir’s Tavern and Steakhouse, 87-48 78th Street. The slideshow is entitled “A View of Woodhaven” and will consist of many “then and now” images of our community.

Neir’s has a full dinner menu so come early and enjoy a meal. Go to to get a sneak peek at their menu.

I will be hosting the presentation on behalf of the society and am looking forward to the interaction with people who are similarly enthusiastic about looking at Woodhaven’s past. There’s been so much talk about how much Woodhaven has changed over the years – and no doubt about it, it has changed – but it’s quite surprising how recognizable our community is, even during its earliest days.

For example, there’s a beautiful aerial image of Woodhaven taken when large sections of our community were still farmland. And yet, at a glance, you can recognize right where you are and what streets - just dirt roads at the time - you are looking at.

It’s an exciting feeling when you are researching an old picture and you finally discover the exact location it was taken, or the exact house in the picture still standing over a century later tucked away on one of our quiet little streets.

You will learn a little about the history of Woodhaven and along the way pick up an appreciation for the intriguing details that you’ve never noticed before. You’ll learn interesting histories about unassuming buildings that you’ve passed many times in your life.

You’ll see every day buildings that used to be hotels or fancy restaurants. You’ll see the building that housed a K-Mart in the 30s and 40s. You’ll be introduced to buildings that were important in the everyday lives of the residents of Woodhaven that were torn down decades ago.

One of the images we’ll be showing you is a representation of what residents in 1900 thought Woodhaven would look like in the future. We’ll take you to the exact location where that image was created and you can compare their vision with the reality of today.

Along the way we will see the faces of the residents of Woodhaven from over 100 years ago. These people may seem worlds apart from us, but we lived and worked and cried and laughed and lived on the same streets, in the same houses. They are us.

There’s something special about looking at Woodhaven’s past – its buildings and people from long ago – while sitting in an establishment that’s been in business for 185 years. We hope the friendly spirits of long ago will join us for our show and enjoy the look back at their time on Earth.

We plan on this being a fun presentation. There will be a quiz given throughout the night (bring a pen) and the winner will walk away with a copy of The Story of Woodhaven and Ozone Park by Vincent Seyfried.

For those who cannot make the presentation, we will be repeating it at the monthly meeting of the Woodhaven Cultural & Historical Society on Wednesday, April 30, at 1 p.m. at Emanuel United Church of Christ, 91st Avenue and Woodhaven Boulevard. We had planned on having a viewing of the film 14 Hours on that day, but due to a scheduling difficulty with our guest speaker we are postponing that until a future date.

We hope to see you at one of these events when residents of Woodhaven’s past and present come together to look at “A View of Woodhaven.”

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