Port BID, Chamber launch first-of-kind app

The home screen of the Try Port First mobile app, jointly created by the Port Washington Business Improvement District and the Port Washington Chamber of Commerce. (Screencap)

A first-of-its-kind app on Long Island has been jointly launched by the Port Washington Chamber of Commerce and the Port Washington Business Improvement District, meant to encourage prospective customers to “Try Port First.”

Launched this week, the “Try Port First” app came from a joint discussion between the two organizations, according to Chamber of Commerce board member and BID President Bill Gordon, who said the app was the first step toward two of their largest goals.

“The two goals here is one, to get more shop local, out of the people that are local, and two, to get people to come visit Port Washington as a destination,” Gordon said in a phone interview. “I’m hoping that over time, we build this so that literally everything is at your fingertips.”

Each organization provided half of the financing for the app, and with the use of a business information database created by the Chamber, all businesses in Port are listed with their contact information, split up by the categories “shop” for stores, “dine” for restaurants, “play and stay” for attractions and hotels, “on the water” for boat rentals and other seafaring necessities, “services” for carpenters, real estate agents, insurance agencies, salons and other businesses, and “events” for a calendar of local events of interest.

The app also has a “hot deals” tab, and those who download it can be the first informed about sales and deals at their favorite Port stores, Gordon said.

“So if a company wants to tell its customers, ‘I’m doing a sale on Friday nights after 5,’ if the push notification is on, not only will it show up in hot deals, but it’ll show up on your cellphone,” Gordon said. “And if an event is canceled, like if we have to cancel Port Outdoors because of the rain, you’ll find that in the app.”

Another tab arranges the Port area’s public service contacts for easy access to elected officials, school districts, local public agencies, fire and police departments, and village governments.

“The new Try Port First app is a one-stop app for everything about Port Washington, whether events and fun things to do, shopping, dining or local government information,” Debbie Greco Cohen, president of the Chamber of Commerce, said. “We are so excited to be launching it and know it will become a favorite app among Port’s residents and visitors alike!”

The app is  free to download via one’s app store of choice, and can be found by searching “Try Port First” in the app store’s search bar.


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