The Forest Hills Chamber of Commerce hosted the fourth annual Celebrate Winter event on Monday night.
As part of the chamber’s campaign to “Eat, Shop, Love Forest Hills,” local businesses and organizations gathered under a tent at 71st Road between Austin Street and Queens Boulevard to celebrate the community and promote local businesses.
In addition to a winter fashion show and live music, attendees sampled food from local restaurants and learned more about the various businesses. The Forest Hills Reindeer also made an appearance, taking photos with families and handing out goodies to children.
This year, the chamber chose the Queens Community House to benefit from the raffle proceeds raised at the event.
“They help everyone, from children to seniors, to people in need to the LGBTQ community,” said chamber president Leslie Brown. “They look out for everyone in Forest Hills and it spreads throughout Queens.”
Earlier in the day, Councilwoman Karen Koslowitz and Forest Hills Stadium promoters Madison House Presents were honored by the Forest Hills Chamber on Austin Street for bringing the holiday lights back.
Like many in the community, Koslowitz said she was upset to hear the news regarding the possibility of no lights this year.
“I love the holiday season, it’s a happy time to come and see the lights,” she said. “It’s just wonderful.”
Madison House assists with street cleaning efforts in Forest Hills and Kew Gardens, but previous provided funding exceeded the amount needed and there was a $9,000 surplus. Koslowitz asked Madison House if they were able to donate $9,000 and they agreed to do so.
“They were willing to give us even more money for more lights,” Koslowitz said, adding that Madison House eventually donated money to provide lights in other communities as well. “Next year, we’re going to have a lot of lights.”