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Queens native Ray Romano narrates tribute video for local businesses during pandemic

Cast member Ray Romano arrives for the premiere of film "The Irishman", in Los Angeles, California, U.S. October 24, 2019. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni

Forest Hills’ favorite son Ray Romano paid video tribute to the small businesses, essential workers and frontline heroes that served Queens residents during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic declaring “Queens Stands Strong Together.”

The video, titled “Queens Rising,” was narrated by the Emmy Award-winning comedian produced in conjunction with the Queens Chamber of Commerce.

In addition to releasing the video, the Chamber announced a multi-pronged effort to get Queens’ businesses and economy back on track, including several new initiatives to support existing businesses across the borough while attracting new businesses to Queens.

“The last few months have been incredibly difficult for Queens, but we got through it because Queens doesn’t quit,” Queens Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Thomas J. Grech said. “We owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to the frontline heroes, essential workers and small businesses who continued to serve Queens residents in the face of this unprecedented pandemic. We are thankful to Ray Romano for his support of Queens’ small business community.”

Romano was raised at the family home at 70-17 Nansen St. and studied at Archbishop Molloy High School in Briarwood for two years before transferring to Hillcrest High School. After graduating, he studied accounting at Queens College before becoming one of the highest-paid actors on television, starring on the hit show “Everybody Loves Raymond.”

“No matter where you are — Sunnyside, Astoria, my hometown Forest Hills, Jamaica, the Rockaways, let’s do what we all do best, what I know Queens does best, and that is support each other,” Romano said.

Among the initiatives announced by the Chamber include QueensCare, a day care program to support working parents; Adopt a Small Business, allowing corporations to sponsor local small business; and QueensShoring, a collaboration with NYC Small Business Services to bring manufacturing back to Queens.

Other programs include QueensChamberBites, an effort to support Queens’ restaurants and food service industries; QueensChamberTech, a campaign to attract, retain and grow a tech-based ecosystem in strategic locations throughout the borough; and more.

“Now is the time to get back to work, and we are excited to announce that these new initiatives to help our local businesses rebuild our economy stronger than ever before,” Grech said. 

The video was produced by Queens-native Emma Leavy, and features footage from a number of beloved local businesses including Bourbon Street in Bayside, Kimmy Ma Art Studio in Fresh Meadows, Great Bear Auto in Flushing, Martha’s Bakery in Bayside, Laundry Stop in Queens Village, Patel Brothers Supermarket in Jackson Heights and New Golden Wine & Liquor in Bayside.

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