While countless businesses deemed nonessential are closed across Queens, many of those considered most vital remain open. Groceries, restaurants, hardware stores, auto repair shops, pet food chains, home supply outlets — all these and more can stay open as long as they follow the rules laid down by state order.
But they can only stay open if we keep them open, by patronizing them. That’s where Alan Baglia of Woodside, the Sunnyside Shines Business Improvement District, other community groups and Edible Queens magazine come in. Together they created “Who’s Open Queens?”, a clickable map that shows hundreds of shops — and now food pantries — that are still open for business. It’s posted online at bit.ly/2WEOttw and can also be found by doing a search.
There are two problems, though: It’s dominated by certain neighborhoods while others are MIA, and it’s become too big for the volunteers to manage. So now they’ve gone to Borough Hall for help. What’s needed is for other BIDs, and maybe the Queens Chamber of Commerce, to also get involved, to fill in the empty spots on the map and to help all those businesses that are still open remain that way.