This year-long reporting initiative explores the challenges faced by small businesses in our neighborhood and investigates the best solutions for long-term survival.

The project includes a series of 8 in-depth stories, profiles of the LES’s most loved businesses, a “Buy Local” Guide and comprehensive interviews with local leaders.

Our readers helped to make this project possible by backing our campaign here. We want to thank each and every one of them and especially our community partners:





photo via @sweetpicklebooks Instagram

Sweet Pickle Books, a Used Books and Pickle Store, Comes to Orchard Street

Sweet Pickle Books, a used bookstore and pickle shop, opened at 47 Orchard Street this week. Offering used books and homemade pickles, the shop also “buys books, libraries, records and weird things …

Dah Shop, at 134 Division St. Photo by Alain Levitt

Dah Shop To The Rescue!

From the Inbox: Local resident and Lo-Down reader, Cass Lilien, wrote us an uplifting note — “Hoping to share a story about why I love my neighborhood and Dah Shop…My bike and main source of transportation was run over while parked in front of my apartment on Orchard Street… …

Partybus bakeshop tote

New Specials and Classes from Partybus Bakeshop, Your Lower East Side Bakery! (Sponsored)

Howdy from Partybus Bakeshop, your Lower East Side Bakery!

As fall approaches, we want to take a moment and say thank you to everyone …

HesterStreetFairReopens

Hester Street Fair Announces Opening Day

The Hester Street Fair will be up and running “IRL” this Saturday, August 15th, 2020. As with most businesses and venues, it has been …

Photo via @katzdeli on Instagram.

Katz’s Deli is Now Offering Local Direct Delivery, Waiving Fee For First 132 Customers

Katz’s Delicatessen has launched local delivery, directly from its website — the owners of the iconic Lower East Side restaurant concluding they can offer a better deal than third party delivery companies like Seamless and Grubhub. …

Doughnut Plant on Grand Street, NYC.

Doughnut Plant Closes Stores, Posts a Call to Action

In a troubling sign of the times, the popular dessert shop Doughnut Plant announced their decision to close all of their shops, “at least through August,” this past week. …

Photo by The Lo-Down

Bluestockings Bookstore Announces Search For New Home

Photo by The Lo-Down

Longtime activist bookstore, cafe and collective, Bluestockings Bookstore, has announced they are being forced to move from their location at …

Gaia sign

Gaia Italian Cafe Announces Last Day at 251 East Houston

Beloved Italian cafe, Gaia, has announced via Facebook that Sunday, July 26th, will be its last day at the restaurant’s current location on Houston …

PartyBus Bake Shop Exterior

Breads, Cookies, Pies, Oh My! Partybus Bakeshop Now Open on Essex Street (Sponsored)

Partybus Bakeshop is a new(ish) artisan bakery and cafe located on the Lower East Side. We started as a pop-up at the Hester Street Fair, but we parked the Partybus on Essex Street in November 2019 and we’re here to stay! Come see for yourself why Food Network included us on this year’s list of… …

Grand Cutters Royal Hot Towel Shave

Get a Free Shampoo with Your Royal Shave and a Haircut at Grand Cutters Barber Shop

Grand Cutters Barber Shop is a family oriented barbershop that has been on the Lower East Side since 1960. There’s a reason why Grand Cutters has been around for so long. ​From haircuts, beard trims, and the signature classic – the Royal Shave, we care about the quality of service. …