Adapting to COVID-19

I will not know if COVID-19 has entered Plumas County by the time this update goes to press. I do know most of us are feeling the effects the crisis is having on our local commerce and community as a whole.

Businesses are getting creative in order to keep their doors open while taking proper precautions to insure public safety. Many have added a curb-side service. You do not have to go without pizza or Mexican food, for example. You can still grab a table at Gumba’s in Blairsden if you do wish to dine in or phone-in an order and they will take it right to your car door. Several area restaurants, like Lena’s Cantina in Portola, and local grocery stores are providing similar customer services.

Some events within the county have been cancelled or at least postponed, for now. I just found out that Plumas Arts had to cancel ‘Taste of Plumas,’ a popular event which was to be held April 18. Lost Sierra Chamber of Commerce is postponing some of our B2B events for now, as well, like the ‘Work It Wednesday Coffee Hour’ and our annual member meeting. We will reschedule these events when things settle back down, hopefully by May.

We did have extremely successful B2B events earlier this month. About 20 folks gathered for our first WIW Coffee hour at Nakoma, and discussed short term goals for 2020. More than 30 members attended our first ‘Cocktails & Commerce’ mixer in Clio right before the snows hit. This mixer was held at a VRBO to highlight the value of chamber membership to VRBO owners.

The Sierra Valley Entertainment Group, a new LSCC member, has two events currently scheduled in April: our next C&C mixer on April 10, with great music and more, and a ‘Reggae for a Reason’ Concert on April 19. Both events will be held at the Diamond S Ranch, on A-23. We should have a go/no-go decision regarding possible postponement of these events by March 30, and will keep you posted through social media.

The Friends of the NRA annual fundraiser will be May 2, here at the Corner Barn in Blairsden, unless it is postponed. This is a huge fundraiser for the Chamber, as we receive the proceeds from the event’s bar sales.

The Chamber and Visitor Center offices have closed for the time being. We will be checking our phone messages regularly should you need to reach us and will reopen as soon as possible. Meanwhile, we are keeping our magazine racks stocked for visitors and passersby, and our public Wi-Fi is available outside the building.

In other news, we are progressing on our Visitor Center’s “facelift.” A couple of our members stepped up and are helping us create a new look and feel that better reflects our vision of the “Lost Sierra.” A big thank you to Joanne at Feathers in Graeagle and Mike at Kinship Ranch in Cromberg for your expertise in the remodel!

An important reason for the overhaul is to make more room for our historical lending library. We already have a number of books and materials available to the public, and will be working with the Plumas County Museum and others to expand our selection.

Are you a LSCC member? Do you have a chamber decal in your window? If you have a brick-and-mortar business, displaying a chamber window decal helps show strength in commerce within a community. Be sure to stop by when we reopen, and pick up your decal. We even have a couple members who put the decal in their car window. Now, that’s pride of membership!

If you are a member, and are having a special event, grand re-opening or anything newsworthy going on, let us know ahead of time. Part of the many perks of being a member of the Chamber is having us to get the word out to our vast membership and the community at large.

Not yet a LSCC member? Were you once a member and let your membership lapse? There is no better time to join or rejoin the Chamber than now. One of our longtime members said to me while holding up a finger regarding the decision of whether or not to participate in clubs and associations, “One: Is it fun? And two: Does it make a difference?” We have many new opportunities for member involvement to help our economy and businesses grow. And yes, we have a ton of fun when we work toward our common goals! Come check us out. Let’s work together in 2020 and get this county jumping!

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