Berger’s Delicatessen and Restaurant at 1913 Mott Avenue promised “anything from a sandwich to a banquet.” The eatery was one of the favorites of the Schwach family and they went there every Friday night for dinner when he was young. Helen, who invariably was their waitress, was like one of the family, bringing hot open turkey sandwiches, a family favorite.
Digging through some dusty drawers, Wave Editor Howard Schwach came upon the December, 1956 issue of the Rockaway Review, the slick magazine put out each month by the Rockaway Chamber of Commerce in those halcyon days of yore.
The magazine immediately brought back some great memories for Schwach, who was a junior at Far Rockaway High School at the time.
Do you have any memories of these Rockaway icons? Let us know by email at editor@rockawave. com or by mail at 8808 Rockaway Beach Boulevard, Rockaway Beach, NY 11693.
Officials digging at the groundbreaking for the “new” hospital at Beach 51 Street and Beach Channel Drive – now known as the Peninsula Hospital Center.
Morton’s Army and Navy was one of the most popular clothing stores on the peninsula, providing not only military surplus (the Korean police action was just a few years past), but Boy Scout uniforms and work clothes of all sorts. Schwach remembers buying his first pair of what were then called “dungarees” in that store as well as all his scout outfits. The store still exists today in Cedarhurst, Long island.
The China House building still stands today, and it is still a Chinese Restaurant. At 11-59 Beach Channel Drive, it is right across the street from McDonald’s.
The Queens-Nassau Lighting Company at 2105 Cornaga Avenue was the place to go for lamps and lighting fixtures. It probably lit more Rockaway homes in the day than any other local store.
The Far Rockaway Palace Chinese and American Restaurant could be found at 1043 Central Avenue, upstairs from the Central Delicatessen. The Palace was one of the first Chinese restaurants in Far Rockaway and the first to be air conditioned. Schwach had all his birthday parties at the Palace, from his fifth birthday up until the sixth grade.
Harry Locker’s Park Inn Hotel, at the boardwalk and Beach 115 Street was one of the first local hotels with an elevator. It had a large dining room that often hosted Boy Scout and other community functions and a roof garden that was open all summer. A kosher establishment, the catering facility was used nearly every weekend. Today, it has fallen into disrepute as one of Rockaway’s adult homes.