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Village Trustees Expected To Pass Resolution To Create Nyack Business Council At Dec. 10th Meeting
By Tina Traster
Nyack is no stranger to its businesses banding together for the greater good.
But on Dec. 10th, the Village’s Board of Trustees is expected to pass a resolution to create a Nyack Business Council to bring individual groups under one tent to steer the village through the pandemic and beyond.
Mayor Don Hammond, who initiated the effort, envisions a panel of a dozen representatives from Village of Nyack, Chamber of Commerce, Nyack Merchants United, ACADA, and Visit Nyack to work to strengthen the village’s economic fiber.
“I’ve lived here for 60 years,” said Hammond. “This is one of the most difficult times I’ve seen in the downtown.”
Hammond said the village has lost at least 25 small businesses, though a few new ones have sprung up and leases are pending at a couple of the shuttered restaurants.
“We have to work together to create activities but not crowds,” he continued. “We need to give businesses support. To hang in there until we’re back to normal. This is an anxious time. We’re on edge.”
What the mayor and the respective groups are looking at, the mayor said, is a “BID-like” organization without the taxing and funding. A BID, or “Business Improvement District” is a geographical area where local stakeholders oversee and fund the maintenance, improvement, and promotion of their commercial district.
Hammond said the village explored a BID several years ago to no avail. He said he doubted there would be state or county funding at this juncture but it may be a concept worth revisiting down the road.
The Nyack Business Council would play a critical role in focusing on economic activity in the village.
De facto, Nyack’s business groups already have been working in tandem with one another and the village government to make the best of difficult times. Throughout the spring, summer and fall, Nyack created an out-door, block-party atmosphere on the weekends. The mayor, in a letter, is encouraging restaurants and merchants to bring their business to sidewalks and erect signage to encourage business.
The Village is waiving fees for sidewalk selling but businesses must have insurance.
Walking in Nyack’s Winter Wanderland
Now, Nyack’s Winter Wanderland, a new program developed by the Village of Nyack, Chamber of Commerce, Nyack Merchants United, ACADA, and Visit Nyack, is promoting the village as a safe place to enjoy the holidays and winter season.
Nyack’s Winter Wanderland showcases the best of what Nyack has to offer every Saturday and Sunday through February 28, 2021. Residents and visitors will find sidewalk shopping and winter markets, hearty food and hot drinks, festive lights, the warmth of fire pits, and music.
To stir up some magic, the Chamber is running a holiday window-decorating content on Facebook. Voting begins Dec. 4th; winners will be announced Dec. 29th. Prizes include a one-year Nyack Chamber membership, three-month display ads on Visit Nyack Website and one-hour portrait session with photographer Kellie Walsh.
“Nyack Winter Wonderland really leverages the village’s assets,” said Thomas Schneck, president of Visit Nyack. “This is definitely a stressful time. We don’t know how quickly a vaccine will be here. But over the next three to nine months we must find creative ways to support Nyack’s businesses.
Among new ideas in the works are the Nyack Fan Card, a $20 card that will give residents and tourists access to special deals among at least 15 and counting participating businesses. Schneck said the Fan Card will be available at local merchants on the Visit Nyack website starting Dec. 7.