You are reading

Two Woodsiders Open Business Undeterred by Pandemic

Jose Campos, co owner of Bibi & JD’s Barbershop, cuts the ribbon on Thursday (Photo: Queens Post)

Sept. 18, 2020 By Christian Murray

Two Woodside residents opened a barbershop on Roosevelt Avenue on Thursday undeterred by the economic meltdown caused by COVID-19.

The opening was an anomaly and was the first ribbon cutting that the leaders of the Queens Chamber of Commerce had attended since the economy came to an abrupt halt in mid March.

“We have been shut down as a city since March 16,” said Tom Grech, the president of the Queens Chamber of Commerce. “I’m very happy to be here for this opening. It is a great Queens success story, immigrant success story.”

The barbershop, located at 63-25 Roosevelt Ave., is called Bibi & JD’s Barbershop and is owned by two immigrants who are friends.

Jose Campos, a co-owner who was born in El Salvador, said he did not want COVID-19 to stop them from pursuing their dream.

He decided to put the business together after being laid off in March from his job as the general manager of the NBA store on Fifth Avenue.

“I always wanted my own business,” he said. He joined forces with Esmerlin Ramirez, who was raised in the Dominican Republic, to form the business.

The pair first met when Ramirez cut Campos’ hair.

“We decided that we would start working on a business instead of staying home,” Campos said. “We decided that COVID would not stop us.”

Their tenacity was recognized by those who attended the ribbon cutting.

“Congratulations to all of you for having the courage to open a small business,” said Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer, who attended the opening. “It is difficult to do it at any time but particularly right now.”

Grech said that he is seeing early signs of a bounce back, although business on the whole is suffering.

“We are seeing signs of life,” Grech said, noting that the chamber was going to a ribbon cutting at a real estate office in Queens Village that afternoon.

But Grech did say that the restaurant industry continues to take a beating.

“I have been talking since April that we have 6,000 restaurants in Queens County…and that half of them would not reopen,” Grech said. He said that his dire prediction is likely to pan out.

Grech said that outdoor dining has not been the panacea that the mayor has indicated.

Furthermore, the city’s plan to allow indoor dining starting Sept. 30 is inadequate, he said. Grech added that the maximum capacity for indoor dining is limited to 25 percent, which isn’t enough.

“We advocated for 50 percent on Sept. 15 and then two weeks later…if things go well 100 percent on Oct.1,” Grech said.

Many restaurants won’t make enough money at 25 percent capacity to survive, he said.

While their labor costs might be less, Grech said, most of their big expenses will remain the same.

email the author: news@queenspost.com
No comments yet

Leave a Comment
Reply to this Comment

All comments are subject to moderation before being posted.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Recent News

Urgent manhunt underway for ‘animal’ who allegedly raped a 13-year-old girl in Flushing park on Thursday: NYPD

The NYPD announced a $10,000 reward is being offered for information that leads to the arrest of a Hispanic man who allegedly raped a 13-year-old girl in a wooded area of Kissena Corridor Park on Thursday afternoon.

More than sixty investigators were at the crime scene late into the night. During a press briefing by NYPD brass on Friday, Chief of Department Jeffrey Maddrey said that the manhunt was expanded city-wide and that the department would spare no expense until the suspect was apprehended.

Southeast Queens man arraigned on weapons charges after cops search his ‘ghost car’ near LaGuardia Airport: DA

A Hollis man was criminally charged after police discovered a cache of weapons in his vehicle during a traffic stop. He was pulled over for driving a “ghost car” with obscured license plates in East Elmhurst near LaGuardia Airport during the early morning hours of June 12.

Judd Sanson, 27, of Jamaica Avenue, was ordered held without bail after he was arraigned in Queens Criminal Court on Thursday afternoon on a criminal complaint charging him with multiple counts of weapons possession, unlawful possession of pistol or revolver ammunition, and unlawful use of a police uniform or emblem and other crimes after the arsenal was found in his SUV.

‘Ghost car’ driver arrested in East Elmhurst after traffic stop reveals weapons, threatening note: NYPD

Police from the 110th Precinct in Elmhurst discovered an arsenal of weapons in a ghost car they pulled over on Ditmars Boulevard and 86th Street in East Elmhurst early Wednesday morning.

NYPD Chief of Department Jeffrey Maddrey held a press briefing at the 110th Precinct on Wednesday afternoon to discuss what the sergeant and three officers from the 110th Precinct public safety team found when they pulled over a black Ford Explorer at around 1:30 a.m. because it had blacked-out license plates.

Henry ‘Hank’ Krumholz, stalwart pioneer of Queens LGBTQ Pride, dies at 73

Henry “Hank” Krumholz, a pioneering gay rights activist in Queens, passed away on Sunday in his Flushing apartment at the age of 73.

Krumholz played a crucial role in the establishment and success of the Queens LGBTQ Pride Parade, which is held annually in Jackson Heights. He joined the parade’s sponsoring organization right after its inaugural event in 1993 and continued his involvement for decades. His passing came just a week after this year’s parade on June 2, marking its 31st anniversary.