4 East Elmhurst Sights You Might Not Expect
The four sights in East Elmhurst in New York, USA you might not expect to find can sneak up on you if you don’t know about them beforehand. On your next visit, be sure to check out these unassuming, but historically relevant, places.
1. The World’s Fair Marina
Tucked in the southeastern corner of the neighborhood, the World’s Fair Marina is a haven for recreational boaters in Queens. Built in 1937, the marina has five docking areas that can accommodate boats of all sizes, including yachts. Even if you don’t want to head out on the water, you can stroll the promenade and enjoy the view. If you own a kayak, powerboat, or canoe, launching from the marina is free from April 15 to November 15 each year.
Contact the marina ahead of time to reserve your launch. Operating hours are one hour after sunrise to one hour before sunset.
2. Louis Armstrong Artifacts
The Queens Library, in East Elmhurst, has several important items of interest for visiting music historians and fans alike. The library’s small archive of Louis Armstrong’s personal writings, memorabilia, and music collection is among the most reviewed materials kept on site. Through funding from the Louis Armstrong Educational Foundation, the library offers regular music workshops and talks, all with the goal of keeping jazz music alive in Queens, East Elmhurst, and Corona. Library staff and their guests offer these programs throughout the year, so check in with them before you visit.
3. Queens Jazz Trail
The Queens Jazz Trail is both an unguided tour and an interactive map taking guests on a walking tour of New York City’s jazz roots. The tour features stops through East Elmhurst and surrounding Queens, including the homes of Jimmy Rushing, Louis Armstrong, and Dizzie Gillespie. While physical copies of the map are long out of print, you can download a digital copy and print one before you head out into the city. Take one neighborhood at a time and get to know the landmarks that made jazz such a significant force in New York for decades.
4. Homes of Famous Residents
East Elmhurst was among the first neighborhoods in the country where African-Americans could buy homes. The neighborhood has a rich history of well-known residents, including Attorney General Eric Holder, writer Langston Hughes, and Willie Mays when he played briefly for the New York Mets. Ella Fitzgerald and Harry Belafonte also owned homes in East Elmhurst for varying amounts of time. The last house that Malcolm X lived in before his assassination is on 97th Street.
Touring these sights can give you a deeper sense of the neighborhood’s cultural significance. No mansions or fancy homes here, but each building carries its own landmark status for the prominent men and women who lived in them.
Queens is a borough filled with tinier neighborhoods, all with their own unique stories and significant sites. Take the time to visit East Elmhurst, and while you might not leave with a postcard, you certainly won’t go away disappointed.
Jonathan Lister is a published author and content strategist. His latest work, Bullet: a Demos City Novel, is out now through J Taylor Publishing.