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Support local businesses through the Community Tee Project

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Community Tee Project

(WBNG) -- Businesses around the Southern Tier have taken a hit due to the pandemic.

While some are set to reopen Friday, businesses like gyms and salons are waiting to open their doors.

JAM Fitness in Vestal is a studio that offers group workout classes, and has been closed for weeks now.

"Literally, the next day we made the complete switch to virtual because we knew consistency was really important to our squad," said owner Marysol Burgos.

While it is offering online classes, JAM still has bills to pay.

"Rent has to be paid, we have to keep the lights on, we appreciate having heat when we're here teaching so all of those things were real concerns about how are we going to cover the cost of a small business when we are shut down," said owner Jenna Moore.

That's why when they heard about the Community Tee Project, JAM jumped on board.

The Community Tee Project was brought to the area by Worldwide Sport Supply in Vestal.

The store has partnered with more than 100 businesses to sell shirts with their logo on them.

"Here's an opportunity for them to get back out in front of people, have people support them, buying a t-shirt, being able to wear their logo and help these companies out," said Worldwide Sport Supply owner TJ Ciaravino.

The shirts cost $19.

$10 goes back directly to the featured business while the other $9 goes to Worldwide Sport Supply.

"I had to lay my staff off a month ago and we're just now able to get them back to work," said Ciaravino.

While the project has been able to help financially, it's also giving some local businesses energy.

"It just gave us such a boost of morale, coming down the home stretch, I pray," said Salon Trend owner Sherette Parker.

Salon Trend got involved with the project early on.

"I didn't think anyone was going to buy a shirt. Then it turned into one, 10, 20, 30, and I think we're over 70 or 80 at this point," said Parker.

Parker is donating Salon Trend's share of the proceeds to the non-profit, New York Bully Crew.

Atlya Studio in Endwell is also choosing to donate its portion of the sales to the non-profit, Mom's House.

"I've had a lot of people and customers and guests reach out to me and just show their concern about our business being closed. I feel like it's sort of a situation of pay it forward," said owner Danielle Loeb.

While the Community Tee Project was meant to help local businesses, it's reaching even further, bringing the whole Southern Tier together.

If you would like to purchase a shirt from the Community Tee Project, click here.

If you are interested in getting your business involved to partner with the Community Tee Project, email TJ Ciaravino at

The online store closes June 1.

Annie Flaherty

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