'Mayor of Arthur Avenue' honored in Little Italy with street renaming ceremony

City officials and the Belmont community hosted a street renaming ceremony in honor of Joe Liberatore, the last of the original 117 merchants in the Arthur Avenue retail market, who was known as the "Mayor of Arthur Avenue."

News 12 Staff

Aug 24, 2021, 9:44 PM

Updated 1,065 days ago

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A beloved business owner was honored Tuesday in the Little Italy section of the Bronx.
City officials and the Belmont community hosted a street renaming ceremony in honor of Joe Liberatore, the last of the original 117 merchants in the Arthur Avenue retail market, who was known as the "Mayor of Arthur Avenue."
Arthur Avenue at Crescent Avenue was renamed "Joe Liberatore Way."
A few years before his passing in 2011, his son Richard took over the business.
"It's a great honor for my father, and a great honor for this neighborhood, because he was the kind of guy who was very dependable, and people trusted him. He did as much as he could for the people in the neighborhood for 75 years. He put his heart into this neighborhood," Richard said.
Liberatore started his career as a street vendor and owner of a vegetable pushcart in 1930s. In the 1970s, Liberatore shifted his businesses to include selling houseplants and vegetable seeds from Italy.


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