Thursday, March 19, 2015

Sky-High Graffiti Bust: Teens Caught On Top Of Flushing Meadows Corona Park Worlds Fair Towers

Five teens were caught by park police after they broke into and climbed 226 feet to the top of the observation deck of the abandoned and severely deteriorated Worlds Fair Astro Towers. The iconic structure closed in 1965.   (Photos: © Geoffrey Croft/NYC Park Advocates)  Click on images to enlarge


By Geoffrey Croft

Five knuckle-headed teens were busted hanging out and doing graffiti 226 feet in the air on the observation deck of the Worlds Fair's iconic Astro Towers NYC Park Advocates has learned. 

Two girls and three boys broke into the towers and made their way to the very top, spray painting tags along the way.  

Two eagle-eyed park cops on patrol in Flushing Meadows Corona Park spotted several figures from about a half mile away walking around the rusted flying saucer-like structures at approximately at 3:30pm on Sunday. 

 Death Staircase.  One the severely deteriorated staircases is missing entire sections of stairs. 

When Park Enforcement Patrol Officers arrived they found a hole in the perimeter fence.   At the base of the circular concrete tower they found the rusty door leading to staircase wide open and a pair of pliers and a broken lock tossed on the ground. 

The KEEP OUT sign on the door had fresh graffiti.

Where the futuristic yellow steel-and-glass enclosed Sky Streak capsule elevators once whisked visitors in seconds to its observation decks high above the World's Fair officers now had to risk their lives going up the severely rusted staircase in order to bring the kids back down to safety. 

When PEP officers arrived at the base of the tower they saw the door leading inside wide open and a pair of pliers and a clipped lock tossed on the ground. 

Numerous fresh pink, teal and black-colored graffiti tags were found in numerous locations as the officers ascended to the top. 

Officers had to use a make-shift ladder made of electrical cords in order to reach the highest peak of observation deck to reach the teens. 

Some of the sky-high graffiti seen on the obsevation deck. 

And at the base. 

Rusted Staircase.

The surprised group were caught red handed with two book bags filled with spray paint,  markers and a camera that contained photos of tags at various locations. 

Park Enforcement Patrol Officers arrested two males, a 14 & 15-year old.

The two were charged with trespassing and possession of a graffiti instrument.  The 14-year-old was busted a few weeks ago for pot possession and had rolling papers on him on Sunday according to law enforcement sources.   

The two were transported to the 110 Pct., given juvenile reports and released to their parents who were not happy.

"Safety is always first," a PEP officer at the scene commented. 

"It's an old building that's falling apart. It is really not safe to be up there, they are putting their lives in danger and if they are partying it makes it a lot worse." 

Breathtaking Views. 

March 7, 2015

Park officers found the front gate of the New York State Pavilion wide open and the lock missing.  They also discovered a hole in another fence on the inside. 

New York State Pavilion.    (Photos: © Geoffrey Croft/NYC Park Advocates)  Click on images to enlarge

February 23, 2015

PEP officers caught a vandal wanted by police.  

While on patrol PEP officers caught Bagner Jara, 16, literally red handed spray-painting the tag "zero"  with red paint on the outside of a park bathroom near the Playground for All Children in Flushing Meadows Corona Park. 

When officers approached he jumped on his bike and took off, peddling away.  He was captured by the New York State Pavilion. He had a knapsack with a red spray can and a bag containing nearly 4 grams of marijuanna. 

He is known to tag "Zero" and "Zion" which are prevalent in and around the park. 

Jara was charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and possession of a graffiti instrument.

At the 110 Pct.  His name came up when police ran his name in the NYPD vandal unit data base.   Police charged with a second crime for spray painting the word "zero" on the rear of an abandoned building at 97-05 Alstayne Ave also in the 110 Pct. 

These are Jara's only two arrests. 

Read More:

CBS - March 20, 2015 - By Sonia Rincon

Eyewitness News - March 20, 2015

5 teens busted after climbing tower at New York State Pavilion in Queens with spray paint: officials  
New York Daily News - March 19, 2015 -  By Lisa L. Colangelo   

NY1 -  March 19, 2015 

New York Post - March 19, 2015  - By Kirstan Conley

Gothamist - March 19, 2015 -  Ben Yakas  


  1. Thanks for the news story about the vandals up in the towers. There's a lot of work underway to stabilize and hopefully restore the pavilion, and a dedicated crew of volunteers has put a lot of time, effort, and their own money into painting the lower portions. It's a shame to see what damage a bunch of morons can do in such a short time. I hope the city charges their parents for the cost of removing it.

  2. What a bunch of lunkheads. I hope they get what's coming to them.

  3. It is very disheartening to see such wanton vandalism.