By Christopher Gomez
It’s been a year since our community and the rest of the world began battling the COVID-19 pandemic. Small businesses everywhere have been affected and put into survival mode during this time of crisis. Many have needed financial assistance to stay open or had to completely shut down if they weren’t able to make ends meet. Even our beloved and resilient businesses here in Little Italy have had to quickly pivot to stay open. We are so grateful to say that because of their determination and unrivaled community support, no businesses have had to close their doors.
Little Italy cafés, restaurants, pubs, fine dining, boutiques, art galleries and shops have all adapted to this “new normal.” Local eateries began offering curbside pickup, takeout, and delivery services. And that’s not all. Many businesses have gotten creative and found innovative ways to continue providing services to the community and engage with their customers safely: boutiques are offering FaceTime personal shopping; shops are offering personalized subscription services for jewelry, coffee, or ice cream; and wineries are even delivering local wine right to your door.
Even with the challenges of COVID, new businesses are opening and flourishing in our beautiful community. Allegro, a new Italian restaurant, expects to open its doors to the community later this month. Pizza enthusiasts, get ready for a new go-to spot in the neighborhood, Mr. Moto Pizza — specializing in authentic New York-style pizza. For those of us who want to eat with our eyes first, there’s Pop Pops Paletas, a pop art inspired popsicle ice cream shop. They are already open and running, so make sure to get your natural, gourmet, handmade popsicle when you get the chance!
All of this amazing success couldn’t have been possible without the support of our Little Italy community. We want to thank everyone who has supported and continues to support local businesses during this difficult time. Thank you for continuing to help our famiglia in any way you can, whether it be big or small.
We also can’t forget about those in our neighborhood that haven’t been able to open their doors: barbershops, hair salons, gyms and yoga studios. Some have gone virtual, while others have continued to stay closed in the meantime. Our goal is to continue to support in any way we can. So please, take that virtual yoga class, buy those gift cards for a manicure and hair color and cut once they’re open again. Let’s continue to stand by our businesses and show that “when the going gets tough, the tough get going.”
For a running list of open businesses, please visit LittleItalySD.com
For more ways to Shop, Dine & Support #LittleItalySD join our Facebook group dedicated to supporting our Little Italy community and local business owners.
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— Christopher Gomez has been Little Italy’s district manager since 2000. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.