Senator Jeff Klein’s concert series – his annual 2013 Summertime Symphonies – are about more than just family, friends and music.
They can also mean business if music fans and those enjoying the night out take time before or after the concert to visit local restaurants, businesses, and commercial strips.
With locals, as well as visitors from Long Island and Westchester, coming to the concerts, the musical performances can have a positive economic impact on local commercial enterprises, said Klein.
He gathered with business owners from around his district at Loreto Park in Morris Park on Thursday, August 8 to promote the idea of the concerts as an economic driver for commercial corridors.
“We are bringing people to our community, so why not provide that link to our local businesses?” asked Klein. “One of the things that we have to be really clear about is that if we are bringing individuals to our area, they should shop in our local area.
During the summer it gets more difficult for neighborhood businesses like restaurants to make money because people are often out-of-town, he said. The concerts can offer a boost, and Klein is calling on the concert-goers to seek out local establishments.
“When you come to the show, shop in the local neighborhood,” said Klein. “Go have dinner and sample some of our wares in local community stores.”
Loreto Park will be the scene of a summer concert with Bobby Rydell, performing on there Wednesday, August 21 at 7pm.
Among the business owners and representatives attending Klein’s meeting were those from PBQ Smoke House, Patricia’s Morris Park, & Big Deal Supermarket on Morris Park Avenue; Lucca restaurant on Westchester Avenue in Pelham Bay; Babalu restaurant on E. Tremont Avenue in Throggs Neck, and Bistro SK restaurant and City Island’s Lickety-Split ice cream shop.
“I think we should say that most people are not even familiar with the area of Morris Park,” said Alex Borgognone, owner of Patricia’s Restaurant. “By having these events, we introduce them to a whole new neighborhood…which is absolutely fantastic and which we have been involved in for the past 23 years.”
Anything that draws a crowd can give a boost to a local restaurant like Babalu, said co-owner William Padilla.
Lucca owner Lucia Mariani said that she hopes there will be a concert or movie in Keane Square Park to benefit Pelham Bay businesses.
Highlights of the concert series include The Bronx Wanderers performing at Bufano Park on Wednesday, August 14; Orquesta Broadway at the Oscar Comras Mall off Bronx Park East on Friday, August 16; Alive & Kickin’ at City Island’s Ambrosini Field on Tuesday, August 20; and Dionne Warwick performing in Riverdale at Seton Park on Tuesday, August 27. The shows all start at 7 p.m.
Patrick Rocchio can be reach via e-mail at email@example.com or by phone at (718) 742-3393