Hours before the decision was reached to postpone the city’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade, for the first time in 258 years, over concerns about the spread of the coronavirus, the Queens Chamber of Commerce celebrated their annual St. Patrick’s Day luncheon.
Hundreds of business and community leaders from across the borough gathered in record numbers at Antun’s in Queens Village as the Chamber honored NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea and Dan “Dee” Tubridy, co-founder and principal of In Good Hospitality and owner of the iconic Rockaway restaurant Bungalow Bar.
“Mom and Dad came here from Ireland, raising five kids in a one-bedroom apartment in Sunnyside. I’m home in Queens,” Shea said, upon receiving the Public Service Award. “I’m incredibly proud to be here today as a police commissioner, and I’m incredibly proud to be here celebrating all of our Irish heritage.”
Tubriday, who received the St. Patrick’s Day Person of the Year Award, will open the Rockaway Beach Hotel, his latest project, and the newest hotel in Queens County, on Memorial Day Weekend.
“This is by no means an individual honor, together we have created an organization that proudly employs over 1,200 people,” Tubridy said. “All those of you in the room that own and operate small businesses are to be celebrated and appreciated. For you are the job creators, the risk takers, and the innovators, the backbone of our local economy.”
The luncheon began with the Presentation of Colors by the 2nd Battalion 25th Marines, followed by the National Anthem sung by Scarlett Lavin. Participants were then treated to a performance by the NYPD Emerald Society Bag Pipers.
“It is an honor to bring together business and community leaders from throughout our great borough to celebrate the amazing contributions that Irish immigrants and Irish-Americans have made to our business community,” Queens Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Tom Grech said. “”From Commissioner Shea, who has served New York City as an NYPD officer for close to thirty years, to Dee Tubridy, whose new Rockaway Hotel promises to be one of Queens’ go-to destinations, Irish-Americans have helped make our borough, and our city, a truly great place to work, live, and do business.”
The Queens Chamber of commerce is the oldest and largest business association in Queens, representing more than 1,150 businesses and more than 100,000 Queens-based employees. For more information you can visit their website here.