President’s Message – April 2021

April 12, 2021

Dear Merchants, Business Owners, and Fellow Members:

April showers bring May flowers! Hopefully, that will be the case as we get more into the spring season and can enjoy the longer days and nice weather.

Even though we have been in a pandemic, I am proud to say that the Chamber has been busy keeping things moving along. We held our April Board Meeting recently, and the report from the Nominating Committee was made by Carol Leff. We will have our elections in May at the General Meeting. We look forward to all of the new and returning Board Members working together as a cohesive group.

Our next General Meeting will be held on Thursday, April 22nd at Sal’s Place. We ask all to support this luncheon, as it will be our first one back in-person since about three months ago. We look forward to seeing all soon. Registration is required, so please visit our website to register and pre-pay.

We have planned some great upcoming fundraisers like a Wine Tasting, Trade Show, and Craft Fair. We also still have Restaurant Week on the table – which will help our restaurant businesses to prosper and encourage our community to enjoy and participate in as well.

Past Presidents Gary Slavin and Patty Orzano are once again working on the second round of federal grants and PSEG grants. We have received some of those funds already and we look forward to being able to use for our needs in the near future. I have also been advised that the Nassau County IDA will be providing community grants for festivals to use. I have apprised Past President and Street Festival Chairman Tony Ventiera about this, and we will look to maximize our efforts to obtain these funds.

We have a new concept for our member businesses through the OPTIMALLY firm. This company assists businesses with a certain threshold of revenue look at their costs and help them save money where applicable. The Chamber will also benefit, as Gary Levy (our member and President of Biltmore Savings Consultants) will rebate to the Chamber when a business uses this concept. We look forward to a great relationship with OPTIMALLY, and we ask all to promote this program for the benefit of all to use. More information will be on the website shortly as a Membership Benefit. We need to do more programs like this, so if you have any ideas, please contact me at (516) 633 – 1435, and we can discuss in detail.

My thanks also to Maria Guzzetta of Lock and Key Therapy and Francesca Zeltmann Attorney at Law for their idea to run a fitness fundraiser at Orangetheory Fitness on April 18th at 3:30 PM. This will benefit the Chamber, so when you receive the flyer, please try and support this project. All are welcome to attend for a small fee.

We will be trying to have our Street Festival in August as well. As more details come forward, we will get them out to all. Past President Tony Ventiera will be the Chairperson as usual, and he will need all to pitch in for a successful event.

I am sad to report that approximately 50 member businesses have not yet paid their dues. If this is you, please remit as soon as possible. Membership is the lifeblood of any organization. To that end, we will be having a Massapequa Membership Blitz on Saturday June 19th from 10AM – 2PM. We will all go out and push membership to all of the open storefronts in the area and put the Chamber out there, as we have not done this concept for at least fifteen years that I know of, and we need to keep our membership strong. We will look for all to assist, so please mark your calendars for this special project. We will also follow this up with another day on Wednesday June 23rd from 9AM – 12PM with other members as well, so please again mark your calendars and be ready to help out with this major project.

My final piece of this message is dedicated to two great Board Members.

Past President Robert R. Barrett has had the honor of being President twice, and he led the Chamber with skill and determination. Robert is a retired NYPD Police Officer and a current Realtor with Nappa Realty. He is well-known within the Massapequa community for being active in the Kiwanis as well. I value his advice and direct approach, and thoroughly enjoy his writings with his million-dollar words.

The other Board Member is Past President Patty Orzano. I will give her the name “Madame Chamber,” as she is involved in so much with our programs, and she does a great job with her dedication and determination for the Chamber in these sometimes trying times. I value her advice and friendship and look for more great things to come from Patty. She is a former business owner of 7-Eleven on Merrick Road in E. Massapequa, and she now consults for other local merchants and does a great job for them.

Looking forward to seeing all after we get our “shots in the arm!”

Keith Wilson, President
Massapequa Chamber of Commerce