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Tuesday December 12th 2017

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Out & About: New York Ferries Get Even Better

By Merle Exit

Starting August 29, 2017, a ferry route started up in Astoria, Queens that connects to Roosevelt Island, Long Island City, East 34th St. in Manhattan, then on down to Wall St. at Pier 11 with the entire route taking approximately 45 minutes.

What that means for travelers staying in Manhattan is an easy opportunity to visit a few areas in Queens without using an overcrowded subway system.   Aside from the many Greek restaurants in Astoria there are some top attractions, two of which are in walking distance of the ferry on the border of Long Island City. Otherwise, you can utilize the MTA buses.

If the fine arts are your thing, take in Noguchi Museum celebrating the works of sculptor and artist Isamu Noguchi. Opened in 1985, the Museum complex was built around a 1920s industrial building, and features indoor-outdoor galleries and a serene outdoor sculpture garden, with two floors of interior exhibition space.  There are other artists displaying exhibits as well. www.noguchi.org

Socrates Sculpture Park offers another art form as well as that out-door serenity. Take in the Socrates Annual, an exhibition of emerging artists running from October 1, 2017 until March 11, 2018. www.socratessculturepark.org.

MoMA PS1 is said to be the oldest and largest nonprofit contemporary art institutions in the United States. An exhibition space rather than a collecting institution, MoMA PS1 devotes its energy and resources to displaying the most experimental art in the world. This is not the same MoMA in Manhattan. There are a few new exhibitions worth a visit that will be showing starting on October 22. www.moma.org

If you love the movies, head to the Museum of the Moving Image. Permanent exhibitions include Behind the Scene, Tut’s Fever Movie Palace and the new Jim Henson Exhibit. There are screenings and events to keep you occupied for hours. www.movingimage.us

Kaufman Studios abuts MOMI and although you cannot get a tour, the site is part of the Kaufman Arts District. Founded by KAS, Museum of the Moving Image and Queens Council on the Arts, KAD spans 24+ blocks and promote arts in the neighborhood. There is an area just outside the studios known as the Backlot where there is an Easement Art Space. Artist Marlene Tseng Yu has four of her paintings located in immediate view of the alley.

Eat and drink at the nearby Rar Bar Restaurant, a local bar and art venue located at 30-01 35th Avenue.

If you would rather stay in that area, The Paper Factory Hotel is the place to be and just a few blocks from the Rar Bar. The hotel was converted from a radio manufacturing factory. www.paperfactoryhotel.com