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Neir’s Tavern: One of America’s Oldest Bars in NYC Perseveres as a Testament to Community and Backing from American Express

July 18, 2022


Loycent Gordon, Owner & CEO of Neir’s Tavern in Queens, New York, was on a mission to give back to community because his friends, neighbors and family had rallied for him when he needed it most. He found his opportunity when one of America’s oldest bars – and a centerpiece of his community – was in jeopardy.

It’s been a roller-coaster ride he couldn’t have imagined, Gordon said, but the tavern has persevered and remains a focal point in the neighborhood.

Neir’s was a 2021 recipient of an American Express’ Backing Historic Small Restaurants grant, awarded in partnership with the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Now in its second year, Backing Historic Small Restaurants was first introduced in 2021 to aid restaurant recovery amid ongoing challenges related to the pandemic. Twenty-five small historic restaurants each received a $40,000 grant to help them improve, upgrade, and preserve their exterior physical spaces and online businesses. “The very survivability of Neir’s Tavern hinges on how connected it is with the community,” Gordon said.

Here, Gordon tells his story as one of NYC’s small business owners and how Amex’s powerful backing has helped him, his business, and those who love it:

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