Has it only been a year? Somehow it feels like five.
Back on March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization officially declared COVID-19 a pandemic. Two days later, the President declared a national emergency. Within another week, California was on lockdown, and New York City was entering a period of deep crisis.
In short, the pandemic has been a long, dark ride—and of course it’s far from over. But even in the midst of all the struggles of the past 12 months, right now we’d like to focus our attention on the things that inspired and sustained us.
First off, we’re so lucky to live in such a supportive community. We’ve been amazed to see the steady outpouring of support for local businesses, including ours.
Late last March, when all nonessential businesses in New York shut down, many of you made a point of going online and giving our digital sales a big boost (And we cannot thank you enough.) You ordered giftcards for the future, shopped early for birthdays and holidays, and in general, just paid it forward.
Again and again, we’ve seen our neighbors make a concerted effort to support local restaurants in particular—taking all the necessary precautions, which sometimes meant eating outside in really foul weather—and doing everything within their power to give these vital businesses a boost.
We’ve also been inspired by our community’s support for local nonprofits. Together, we helped raise over $1,800 for Project Resilience, which helped feed those in need here in Ulster County. At a time when many nonprofits and arts organizations were unable to hold traditional fundraisers, Kingston came out swinging to help them keep the lights on. (We’ve been honored to play a small role in helping the Kingston Food Co-Op get off the ground, and grateful for all of you who donated to the co-op’s Solidarity Share Fund over the holidays, more to come on that this year)
Of course, even with more vaccines going in more arms every day, the fight is far from over. The coronavirus is still very much among us. A lot of businesses have closed for good, and a lot of people have lost their livelihoods. It will take a long time, and a lot of effort, and a lot of us working together to overcome the challenges of the pandemic—and we’ll probably be feeling the aftereffects, often in unexpected ways, for a long time to come.
But based on the evidence of the past 12 months, one thing is clear: our community will be there to support all of us—as we come out the other side. We’re committed to doing everything we can to help our greater Kingston community remain resilient in the days and years to come.
Andrew + Clark
Missed our last //blog about Cabin Fever? Check it out here.