Since March, when the world started to count Covid cases and deaths, the Town of Pound Ridge has consistently ranked as the municipality with the lowest numbers in Westchester.
It takes a community!
The Market at Pound Ridge Square has been central to Pound Ridge’s success. Even during the primal scare at the beginning of the pandemic, with an almost total shutdown of everything but essential services such as food, Market owner Billy Fortin never missed a beat. Billy and his staff of 110 worked tirelessly to keep the Market open for regular business hours and doing double and triple shifts to help fill curbside orders for the next day. With Pound Ridge Chief of Staff, Nicole Engel, coordinating the volunteer list, scores of townsfolk have helped out. Notable among these volunteers has been: Pound Ridge Police Chief David Ryan; Police Sargeant Mike Armistead; Members of the Pound Ridge Fire Department and Ambulance Corps, including Justin and Deborah Friedland and Tammy Rainford; longtime Pound Ridger Melinda Velez, who found the volunteer work to be so rewarding she’s taken a permanent position at the Market focusing on food delivery to some of the Market’s senior and more vulnerable customers, and; several residents who made helping at the Market virtually a full-time job, including Todd Sullivan, Lisa Zaino, and Colette Dow. The Town assigned volunteers to deliver groceries to all seniors requesting the help.
Always humbly focusing the spotlight on others, Fortin says: “I couldn’t be prouder of my staff. They’ve worked as a team, night and day, without a single complaint, on a mission to keep our shelves stocked, adhere to a whole new set of safeguards to protect against the virus, and continue the regular flow and delivery of groceries to our customers. I feel personally responsible to ensure a steady flow, and not just for everyone in Pound Ridge, but for the neighboring towns, too…we have as many customers coming from Connecticut as from New York. We’re pleased to be doing our part keeping Pound Ridge as safe and normal as possible.”
In the first 5 months of the pandemic, The Market at Pound Ridge Square packaged over 30,000 curbside pick-ups and served a total of over 152,000 customers.
Also key to Pound Ridge’s survivalist success is the special group of teachers at the Pound Ridge Elementary School. Amy Fishkin, Principal, stepped-up as soon as possible coordinating the shift to technology-based distanced learning and doings things such as distributing Chromebooks to make sure every student has access.
And kudos go out to Town Supervisor, Kevin Hansen, who, among other things, worked with The Pound Ridge Land Conservancy to keep the local preserves and reservation open. For many in Town, the ability to go for a serene socially-distanced walk has been a saving grace.
And for everyone else who has volunteered in the effort…you know who you are…the Town applauds your charity, and thanks you for your service to the community! It’s Pound Ridgers that make Pound Ridge so great!