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Readers Respond: The best and worst of Ridgewood

Responses: 44

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the old gang from madison st.

wonder if anyone of my pals are around at this time........eric gehm,john lynch,anthony glomski,audrey emerich,betty emerick,charles ackerman,the murgolo girls,thelma ritter,catherine jahn, if so I would like to hear from you.
—Guest frederick letzeisen

Recipe for German spice cake?

Does anyone out there have a recipe for German spice cakes that were baked in all German bakeries during the 1930/1950 time frame . Sure would like to taste on again after all of the years that have passed. I grew up on Madison Street between Seneca and Cypress avenues and remember going to the bakery for my parents and getting crumb buns and spice cakes and now I cannot find anyone who has the spice cake recipe. Please help an old timer to taste this treat once more.
—Guest fred letzeisen

old freinds

Looking to see if any of the old gang that hung out at Sal's pizzia or Nicks Auto shop are still around,Robert Kruger,Tony, Nat, Ralph.
—Guest Rupert

Growing up on Seneca Avenue in Ridgewood

I grew up on Seneca Ave and Cornelia St in the 50's and 60's. I remember a kosher butcher on our corner, named Mr. Zipper, and a produce store on the other, a man we called "Jimmy". Around the corner down Catalpa Ave, right past Mr. Zipper's, was "Mary's Flower Shop". I remember shopping at Trunz Pork store (motto: "Less work for Mother") and the twin five-and-ten cent stores, Woolworth's and S.S. Kresge's ("Ma! I'm goin' to the five-and-ten!" "Which one?" "Kresge's"). In the summer we would walk all the way up Seneca Ave to St. Felix Ave and go to the park there. On the way we'd stop by a corner store that sold Italian Ice; I think it was across the street from P.S. 77. That park had a little shallow swimming pool for kids.
—Guest Henry

Ridgewood, Queens

I grew up on Catalpa ave and moved in the 80"s. I just buried Dad and I was disapointed with the condition of the neighborhood.
—Guest Steve Rybicki

Wonderful Madison Street and Ridgewood

I grew up on Madison St. between Seneca and Cypress Ave. during the 30's and 40's.I went to P.S. 77 elementary school on Seneca and George . It was great to go to the Ridgewood and/or Madison theaters on a Saturday morning to see cartoons, a double feature and sing along with the organ music....even Pathe News was great to see. All of this for twenty five cents. Went shopping with my Mother on Myrtle Avenue and I worked after school in the Berkys Mens and Boys Store on Myrtle Ave. I also worked for Waxgizers Paint and Wallpaper store further out on Myrtle. My first job was with Franzinis Vegetable Market at the corner of Madison and Seneca...three dollars a week and a bag of fruit on Saturday when day was done. What memories. I now live in Florida, at just celebrated my 81st birthday. Times sure have changed . I wonder if anybody that I grew up with is still around............Eric Gehm, John Lynch, Jane Schultheis, Carl and Elsie Wildgruber, Anthony Glomski. It would be nice to contact you.
—Guest fred letzeisen

Ridgewood Special

Ridgewood shall always hold a special place in my soul, where it shall live on eternally...
—Guest carolann

Best About Ridgewood

I liked to shop in the 5 & 10 on Myrtle Avenue. Soft pretzels were sold on the sidewalk - 3 for a quarter. I think there was a Woolworths on Knickerbocker Avenue. We'd meet in Knickerbocker Park and sing doo-wop but hang-out in Cleveland Park. Social Clubs with juke boxes were also part of the scene. One could always buy a slice of pizza somewhere on the avenue and that is still true today!
—Guest Anita

P.S.116

I attended P.S. 116 and remember the thrill of walking to school alone in the first grade. What kid does that nowadays? The teachers were all woman and no one stepped out of line. All the students went home for lunch and came back just in time to line up in the crowded school yard and quietly enter the school. After, 116 I went to 162 on Suydam and St. Nicholas...a very long walk from my house on Gates and Knickerbocker. And who can forget the many candy stores that dotted the neighborhood? If you had a quarter, you could buy lots of candy. The people who lived in the neighborhood all knew who you were and, if you did anything wrong, your Mom was told immediately......by word of mouth, because one of the many pastimes of Brooklyn was looking out the window. My aunt has a pillow and a little bench that she would kneel on and watch the world go by. I often times joined her just to watch.....it was another time, in another place.
—Guest isadora

The Oasis

My grandmother lived on Grove St. right off Fresh Pond Rd. Almost every Saturday in the 70's my mother would take me to visit. Some days I got lucky and went to the Disney double feature they always had at the Oasis right around the corner. Other times I would have to go with them shopping on Myrtle Ave which was a pretty good walk. All I really remember about it was the store fronts. All those businesses with the big glass displays and set back doors. They don't build them like that anymore. My father was friends with a guy named Bruce who owned Paradise pet shop on Fresh Pond Rd. I loved the aroma of the aquariums as you entered. Katty-corner from the Oasis was Jimmy's Italian restaurant and it wasn't the best pizza, but you don't care when you're a kid. I also remember we would go to mass on Saturday night at 5pm at Miraculous Medal. The diner on Fresh Pond right before Metro was always good for some late night munchies. It was all good.
—Guest Mike previously from Middle Village

What a great place to grow up! Ridgewood

I, too, grew up in Ridgewood in the 1940's and 50's. The ice cream parlor on Myrtle Avenue near Wyckoff was called Kolleti's and the Jewish deli nearby was called Gottlieb's. I went to St. Brigid's School on St. Nicholas Avenue between Grove and Linden Streets and we also went home for lunch every day. Grove Street was actually designated a "Play Street" and was closed to traffic between Wyckoff and St. Nicholas Avenues every day after school. It was a great place to grow up!
—Guest Elaine

Best of Ridgewood

It was always immaculate. Though I attended St Brigid's School, I also attended many functions at St Matthias like processions, bazaars, Masses, etc. Church was very important. Catalpa Ave was lined with people that could not get into the church for functions like Confirmation where the Bishop and his entourage would march. You could walk or take public transportation almost anywhere without worrying about your well being when you were as young as 12 or 13. We often took the elevated line downtown to shop at A&S and Mays and Martins. The name of the sandwich restaurant you refer to was Gottlieb's. Across the street was Bickford's. I will always cherish the memories I have of growing up in Ridgewood. Going to Coney Island was quite a trek though. You had to take the train to Manhattan and pickup the train to Stillwell Ave. On hot summer days we would sit out on the fire escape and dare not move. Ah, yes the good old days.
—Elizaberh

Ice Cream Parlor in Ridgewood

The name of the ice cream parlor near the corner of Wyckoff and Myrtle was Colletti's. Yummy. And that was next to a Jewish sandwich shop, name of which now escapes me, started with a G I think. Great safe neighborhood, spent my childhhood there, on Madison St. near Woodward Ave. At that time it was solid German, though we were Italian. The only ones on the block, I think! Went to school at St. Matthias and "came home for lunch" every day. That's not something you hear much anymore. There were soooo many kids outside to play with at any given time. You could always come up with a few to play a board game with on someone's front stoop or inside their front gate. Candy stores were everywhere and all it cost was really, really a penny. No lie!! And I think it was 10 cents for a delicious ice cream cone. Hand dipped! I loved growing up in Ridgewood, nice memories.
—Guest Terry

Best About Ridgewood

Shopping along Myrtle Avenue ....and the Madison movie theater where I spent many long afternoons watching two movies, in the children's section......where the matron would try to hush all the chatty children. The ice cream parlor...can't remember the name....and Abner's Bake Shop...where the coffee cakes were the best!
—Guest Marie Colicchio

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