Friday, August 5 2022

As Long Island City has seen an unprecedented boom in its real estate market over the past decade, the sprawling neighborhood’s Asian and Asian American population has also grown. LIC contains the fastest growing Asian community in New York, according to census data with nearly 11,000 Asian residents, representing 34% of the population.

With these changing demographics in mind, the Long Island City Partnership kicked off its first-ever LIC Lunar New Year celebration, which began Monday, January 24 and will run through Sunday, February 6.

“LIC is where the world comes together, and we’re excited to help our growing Asian and Asian American community share this Lunar New Year celebration with the rest of the city,” said Elizabeth Lusskin, President. of the Long Island City Partnership. “It is also a great time to highlight the many Asian and Asian American businesses in the region, and the great pride that the whole community, including all of our small businesses, has in our diversity. Even as LIC evolves, it remains one of New York’s most unique and rewarding neighborhoods to discover.

During the two-week program, the neighborhood will be bustling with promotions, offers and events from more than 60 businesses and organizations, including top restaurants, cultural institutions and retail stores. Experiences range from a Lunar New Year-themed flea market to new menu offerings.

The participants and partners of the celebration cover a range of categories. Some participants include JACX&CO Restoration Hall (including LOTUS+CLEAVER and Temakase Long Island City), Materials for the Arts, Museum of the Moving Image, New York Chinese Cultural Center, Socrates Sculpture Park, The Noguchi Museum, Xi’an Famous Foods and Yumpling, among others. The event was not limited to Asian or targeted businesses in order to remain inclusive of LIC’s diverse community interested in honoring Lunar New Year in their own way.

“We jumped at the chance to be part of this groundbreaking Long Island City Partnership program that both engages and champions local businesses like mine and validates the vibrant Asian community that has flourished over the past few years” , said Jason Wang, CEO. of Xi’an Famous Foods, which has advised LICP on the event for the past few months.

Xi’an Famous Foods reopened its LIC location in April after a devastating fire in January 2020. The LIC branch is offering a special signed version of their famous house chili oil from January 29 to February 1, as part of the celebration.

“As a business owner and former resident, I am committed to the success of Long Island City and showcase its continued diversity in an authentic way,” Wang said.

In recent years, and throughout the ongoing pandemic, several Asian-owned businesses have opened and thrived in LIC, capitalizing on the neighborhood’s changing demographics, Lusskin explained.

“We are thrilled to partner with LIC Partnership to celebrate the Lunar New Year and share Chinese arts with the community,” said Ying Yen, Executive Director of the Chinese Cultural Center of New York. “Long Island City is becoming an epicenter of Asian and Asian American culture and opportunity. We look forward to doing more to serve the growing Asian and Asian American populations in Long Island City and the LIC community as a whole.

For more information on events and participating companies, visit the LICP website longislandcityqueens.com.

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