By NAN Staff Writer
News Americas, QUEENS, NY, Mon. May 31, 2021: For decades its been referred to as ‘Little Guyana,’ but as of Saturday, May 29, 2021, it is now official.
New York City officials on Saturday co-named the corner of Liberty Avenue and Lefferts Boulevard in Richmond Hill, Queens, NY “Little Guyana Avenue.”
The co-naming ceremony was held to celebrate the contributions of the Guyanese community in New York City and came three days after the country and its nationals in the Diaspora marked its 55th anniversary of independence from Britain.
According to the latest census data, Richmond Hill has the largest Guyanese community outside of Guyana. The community is made up of immigrants who have businesses, big and small, along Liberty Avenue and neighboring streets.
The event was made possible by Councilmember Adrienne Adams and District Leader Richard David.
“I am ecstatic, thrilled, and thankful and our ancestors are happy. Pride took a front-row seat as Guyanese from near and far gathered regardless of the pouring rain for the co-signing of “Little Guyana Ave.,” commented Pat Jordon Langford, president of the Guyana Tri-State Alliance.
“We’re recognized, we’re here, we made a difference, uplifted the community,” said Bihari Lall, of the Gitto Farmers Market. “There’s little Italy, Chinatown, now there’s Little Guyana.”
“Today’s a special day, because it brought recognition to my community,” said Ryan Koobial, of Kaieteur Liberty Restaurant. “I gotta’ thank my parents for coming to this country and building a foundation for us.”
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio joined the festivities and donned a Guyana flag mask. He addressed hundreds of attendees who were waving their flags and celebrating in the rain.
“A community so worthy of respect, of appreciation in this finally being seen, finally being understood, finally being acknowledged, finally being understood… this is your day for all you’ve done for this city and nation,” the mayor said.
“We brag about how we come from all over the world,” added Rep. Gregory Meeks. “Your presence here in Richmond Hill has made Queens a better place.”