Celebrating downtown’s Hispanic businesses


In spite of howling cold winds, a small crowd gathered in Village Square to dance to the pulsating beats from music by Ricardo Stevan and Nataly Barco. The joint gathering by the Business Improvement District and the North Shore Hispanic Chamber of commerce was the first of its kind in downtown, celebrating the accomplishments of Hispanic business owners of the BID district in the backdrop of Hispanic Heritage month.
The Hispanic Chamber serves and connects the Hispanic community while helping small businesses and to empower the economy of Hispanic owned businesses on Long Island’s North Shore, while the BID solely focuses on attracting shoppers to Glen Cove’s downtown.
Connie Pinilla, the chamber’s president, and Jill Nossa, the BID’s executive director, both expressed their excitement in collaborating with one another to help combat any language barriers small Hispanic-owned business owners may face, and gathering during Hispanic Heritage month was the perfect opportunity to emphasize their commitment to help local businesses.
National Hispanic Heritage Month is celebrated from Sept. 15 through Oct. 15, and recognizes the contributions and influences of Hispanic Americans to the history, culture, and achievements of the United States. The month also celebrates Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua, who all gained their independence on Sept. 15.
Meanwhile, Mexico celebrates its Independence Day on Sept. 16, followed by Chile’s Independence Day on Sept. 18. It spans between two months to encompass Columbus Day, or Dia de la Raza, “Race Day,” which falls on Oct. 12, and recognizes the cultural fusion of indigenous America and Spanish heritage.

The observation started in 1968 as Hispanic Heritage Week under President Lyndon Johnson and was expanded by President Ronald Reagan in 1988 to cover a 30-day period
According to the Pew Research center the United States Hispanic population reached 63.6 million in 2022, up from 50.5 million in 2010. The 26 percent increase in the Hispanic population was faster than the nation’s 8 percent growth rate but slower than the 34 percent increase in the Asian population. In 2022, Hispanics made up nearly one-in-five people in the U.S., up from 16 percent in 2010 and just 5 percent in 1970.
Hispanics are the fastest growing segment of the U.S. population. They own and operate more than 350,000 businesses nationwide.