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70 Amazing Nostalgic Photos of Corona, Queens from the 1980s

Stepping into Corona, Queens in the 1980s was like entering a mix of cultures, bustling streets, and a strong sense of community. It was a time when kids played stickball until dusk, families gathered on stoops, and the smell of home-cooked meals wafted from apartment windows. Italian, Irish, and Jewish families who had established roots in earlier decades lived alongside newer immigrants from Latin America and Asia.  Let’s rewind and explore this dynamic neighborhood, capturing its essence during that iconic decade.

Walking down 108th Street, the heart of Corona, felt like navigating a global marketplace. Mom-and-pop shops displayed colorful merchandise, from religious statues and handcrafted jewelry to exotic spices and vibrant fabrics. The street was a sensory feast, with vendors hawking their wares and the chatter of different languages creating a constant hum.

Speaking of food, Italian restaurants like Park Side and Leo’s Latticini served up classic pasta dishes and hearty pizzas. For those craving Latin American flavors, Rincon Criollo was the go-to spot for delicious roast pork and savory stews. And who could forget the iconic Lemon Ice King of Corona, a neighborhood staple serving up refreshing Italian ices in a rainbow of flavors?

Life in Corona wasn’t just about food and shopping; it was about community. Kids spent their days playing in Flushing Meadows Corona Park, home to the iconic Unisphere and the New York Hall of Science. The park was a haven for outdoor fun, with its vast green spaces, playgrounds, and baseball fields hosting countless Little League games and family picnics.

Movie nights were often spent at the local cinema, the Corona Theater, which showcased a mix of Hollywood blockbusters and Spanish-language films.  The theater was more than just a place to watch movies; it was a community hub where friends and families shared popcorn and laughter, escaping into the magic of the silver screen.

Sports, especially baseball, held a special place in the hearts of Corona residents. Shea Stadium, the former home of the New York Mets, stood proudly at the edge of the neighborhood, drawing passionate fans who cheered on their team with unwavering loyalty.  The stadium was more than just a sports venue; it was a symbol of community pride and a place where dreams of victory were shared by young and old.

#1 Graffiti on a retaining wall features an ocean-themed mural with Mickey Mouse and Lucille’s Beauty Parlor, Corona, Queens, 1982.

#2 X&P Grocery, Likavitos Gift Shop, and Bel Paese Pizzeria on National Street in Corona, Queens, 1982.

#3 Elevated subway tracks at the intersection of 45th Avenue and National Street in Corona, Queens, 1982.

#4 Residential buildings at the intersection of 108th Street and 36th Avenue in Corona, Queens, 1982.

#5 A vehicle parked next to a retaining wall covered in street art in Corona, Queens, 1982.

#6 Vehicular traffic on the Grand Central Parkway in Corona, Queens, 1982.

#7 Tom’s Latticini market, Leonard’s Bake Shop, Star Barbara, and National Meats on 102nd Street in Corona, Queens, 1982.

#8 A staircase leads to the elevated subway line at the intersection of Roosevelt Avenue and National Street in Corona, Queens, 1982.

#9 Masjid Al-Falah Islamic Center on National Street in Corona, Queens, 1982.

#10 Dilapidated and graffiti-covered cement staircases lead to residential homes on 37th Avenue in Corona, Queens, 1982.

#11 Dilapidated and graffiti-covered cement staircases lead to residential homes on 37th Avenue in Corona, Queens, 1982.

#12 Fans enter Shea Stadium before an opening day baseball game in Corona, Queens, 1982.

#13 Two people walk a child across the intersection of National Street and Roosevelt Avenue near an elevated subway line in Corona, Queens, 1982.

#14 Fans watch an opening day baseball game from outside Shea Stadium in Corona, Queens, 1982.

#15 A boy looks over the edge of an elevated pedestrian walkway over the Shea Stadium parking lot in Corona, Queens, 1982.

#16 The ‘Diamond Vision’ video screen is visible from the upper deck of Shea Stadium during an opening day baseball game in Corona, Queens, 1982.

#17 Street traffic under the elevated subway tracks at the intersection of 108th Street and Roosevelt Avenue in Corona, Queens, 1984.

#18 Street traffic under the elevated subway tracks at the intersection of 108th Street and Roosevelt Avenue in Corona, Queens, 1984.

#19 A Spanish-American Market at the corner of 108th Street and 37th Drive in Corona, Queens, 1984.

#20 Stairs leading to the elevated subway line on Roosevelt Avenue in Corona, Queens, 1984.

#21 Graffiti on a retaining wall along 45th Avenue in Corona, Queens, featuring Mickey Mouse with an anti-littering message, 1984.

#22 Veteran’s Square park and businesses along 102nd street in Corona, Queens, including National Meats and the Open Air Market, 1984.

#23 View looking north towards Roosevelt Avenue, from the intersection of National and 102nd streets in Corona, Queens, 1984.

#24 The elevated subway line at the intersection of 45th Avenue and National Street in Corona, Queens, 1984.

#25 View looking north towards Roosevelt Avenue, from the intersection of National and 103rd streets in Corona, Queens, 1984.

#26 A young fan looks over the edge of an elevated pedestrian walkway over the Shea Stadium parking lot during a baseball game, Corona, Queens, 1982.

#27 View from the upper deck of Shea Stadium during a baseball game, Corona, Queens, 1982.

#28 Street traffic under the elevated subway tracks at the intersection of 108th Street and Roosevelt Avenue, Corona, Queens, 1984.

#29 Street traffic under the elevated subway tracks at the intersection of 108th Street and Roosevelt Avenue, Corona, Queens, 1984.

#30 A Spanish-American Market at the corner of 108th Street and 37th Drive, Corona, Queens, 1984.

#31 The stairs leading to the elevated subway line on Roosevelt Avenue, Corona, Queens, 1984.

#32 Businesses on 63rd Drive, Rego Park, Queens, 1984.

#33 Graffiti on a retaining wall along 45th Avenue, Corona, Queens, 1984.

#34 Veteran’s Square park and businesses along 102nd street, Corona, Queens, 1984.

#35 The intersection of National and 102nd streets, Corona, Queens, 1984.

#36 The elevated subway line at the intersection of 45th Avenue and National Street, Corona, Queens, 1984.

#37 The intersection of National and 103rd streets, Corona, Queens, 1984.

#38 People sit along the stone wall next to the Unisphere in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1986.

#39 Two children enter Flushing Meadows Park in Corona, Queens, 1986.

#40 A family relaxes on the grass in Flushing Meadows Park in Corona, Queens, 1986.

#41 Aerobics instructors work their routine in a boxing ring in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1986.

#42 A young girl sits on the lap of ‘Mickey Mouse’ in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1986.

#43 People lie on the grass in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1986.

#44 People on the foot paths in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1986.

#45 A woman crouches on the grass beside a toddler sleeping in a stroller in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1986.

#46 Baseball fans tailgate in a parking lot outside Shea Stadium before game six of the 1986 World Series, Corona, Queens, 1986.

#47 Baseball fans tailgate in a parking lot outside Shea Stadium before game six of the 1986 World Series, Corona, Queens, 1986.

#48 Baseball fans tailgate in a parking lot outside Shea Stadium before game six of the 1986 World Series, Corona, Queens, 1986.

#49 Baseball fans tailgate in a parking lot outside Shea Stadium before game six of the 1986 World Series, Corona, Queens, 1986.

#50 A man and a young boy sit on the flatbed of a lumber truck parked outside Shea Stadium before game six of the 1986 World Series, Corona, Queens, 1986.

#51 Two baseball fans tailgate in a parking lot outside Shea Stadium before game six of the 1986 World Series, Corona, Queens, 1986.

#52 Baseball fans wait outside Shea Stadium before game six of the 1986 World Series, Corona, Queens, 1986.

#53 A group of baseball fans tailgate in a parking lot outside Shea Stadium before game six of the 1986 World Series, Corona, Queens, 1986.

#54 Two baseball fans tailgate in a parking lot outside Shea Stadium before game six of the 1986 World Series, Corona, Queens, 1986.

#55 A pair of women and a young boy look at a baby in the arms of a man near vendor stalls in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1988.

#56 A boy on a bicycle stops to watch musicians perform traditional Hindustani music in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1988.

#57 Two boys lie on the ground in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1988.

#58 A man stands on a footpath in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1988.

#59 A group of people talk in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1988.

#60 A family relaxes on the grass in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1980.

#61 People relax on the lawn in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1980.

#62 A man sits in a chair with a radio in his lap in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1980.

#63 People wait in line in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1980.

#64 Players and spectators watch a baseball game in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1980.

#65 People relax on the lawn in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1980.

#66 People gather on the lawn, footpaths, and recreational areas in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1980.

#67 People walk over a pedestrian bridge in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1980.

#68 A man carries a child on his shoulders in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1980.

#69 People crowd on a footpath in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1980.

#70 People sit on a park bench as a woman combs a child’s hair in Flushing Meadows Park, Corona, Queens, 1980.

Written by Makayla White

An amateur content creator and dreamer. I Run, Cycle, Swim, Dance and drink a lot of Coffee.

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