A Back to Business event sponsored by the Queens Chronicle and Antun’s of Queens Village took place on June 15th. The Back to Business event was held at Antun’s, located at 96-43 Springfield Blvd and it was hosted by Ree Brinn, an account executive at the Queens Chronicle.This event allowed small business owners and advocates to come together and share their business tips and resources with each other.
Pauline Swift of Our World Media Network, a nonprofit online community broadcast and radio station, was one of the entrepreneurs in attendance. She came up with the idea of the network seven years ago in an effort to create an unbiased source for people to listen to. Our World Media Network is run by Pauline Swift as well as her son Joseph Swift, an Emmy-nominated photographer, and Glenn Greenidge, the executive director of the Sutphin Boulevard Business Improvement District. Coronavirus has caused them to conduct their interviews with guests online. In a brief assessment about the event Mrs. Swift stated “It was wonderful! It’s what we need for the community and it was a great place for people to meet. People can go there to learn about what is going on in the community and have different resources. It’s something that is needed.” Although Covid-19 has had many negative effects on entrepreneurs there have also been some positive effects. An outcome of the virus that Pauline Swift mentioned is “We can do remote interviews all over the world now because everybody doesn’t have to come to the studio like it used to be. One of the goals I set for the future is training and educating young people in broadcasting so they can get hands-on experience. I want to get college interns in broadcasting so they can get their feet wet.”
Glen Greenidge, a co-host at Our World’s WGJS radio shows, also attended the Back to Business event. Glen Greenidge has conducted interviews with the police commissioner, elected officials and many different entrepreneurs on the show. In addition to interviewing guests on the show Greenidge has also hosted a plethora of events and he is the executive director of a Business Improvement District.
In 2020 Greenidge was forced to cancel the Harvest Festival, however his festival will be coming back and he is excited that people will get to go from Hillside and Jamaica avenues to Sutphin Boulevard to see what Downtown Jamaica has to offer.
According to Greenidge, in the past, the event has averaged 10,000 guests and had 100 vendors.
“We are going to have a cultural arts section, which is new,” said Greenidge. “We are going to have a petting zoo, some classic cars and then of course a stage with music … the theme is ‘For the Children.’”
All together, the event was a success and a step in the right direction towards getting small businesses back on their feet.
Photo by Ree Brinn