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Boccie in "Spaghetti Park"

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Built in the late 1910s, and officially named for the neighborhood's first casualty in World War I, the William F Moore Park is better known by its local nickname - Spaghetti Park - and for its location, across from the Lemon Ice King. The park's treasure is its clay-and-and boccie court, where players from all over the city gather in the evening to play - aided by the lights installed in 1979 that make it the only nighttime boccie location and a beacon to older Italian gentlemen who love to play. Although boccie takes center stage, the park quietly hums with couples strolling or sitting on benches, enjoying ices from the Lemon Ice King, and the older men playing chess and checkers. Cara De Silva speaks beautifully about her experience of the park: "Spaghetti Park, in increasingly Hispanic Corona Heights, especially at dusk when the vanishing Italian American life of the city, still visible here, is caught in the glow of the park's lanterns as though preserved in amber. Men still speak Italian as they play boccie, and on the recently inaugurated Italian Day, the park's outdoor kitchen - replete with fridge, sink, stove, and deep fryer - was scheduled to produce zeppole for every celebrant in this tiny green bastion of resistance."

Credits: Produced for Queens Council on the Arts by Highly Enterprises and Michael Vance Productions. Directed by Michael Vance and E. Paul DiMartino. Produced by Nancy Lee and Ilana Harlow. Text by Ilana Harlow. (1:20)