PLACERVILLE, Calif. — Businesses in the Sierra foothills are still recovering from losses sustained during planned power outages in October and November.
The Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) turned off power to hundreds of thousands of customers during several high wind events to prevent its equipment from sparking wildfires. Some of the planned shutoffs affected homes and businesses for days at a time.
Mary Dedrick’s cheese store is on Placerville’s Main Street. The store lost more than $10,000 in sales and product during recent power outages, she said.
"I don’t think that you can catch up,” Dedrick said. “I think that you can move forward and hold on to what you have for the next time we have a hiccup.”
She and other small businesses in the Sierra are hoping for community support on Small Business Saturday, to help lift them up following losses sustained during the power outages. Dedrick teared up as she recalled the many people who came out in the days and weeks following the outages to show support.
“This city of Placerville, us, we all lost a lot of money with all the electrical outs,” said Dolly Wager, one of the 24 owners of Lofty Lou’s Yarn Shop in Placerville.
The store had to shut down during the power outages, Wager said. She says small businesses are important, especially to communities like Placerville.
“We are a small main street,” Wager said. “We are small businesses and if you want this to stay a vibrant community, we need, to have, to support the businesses here.”
Small Business Saturday launched in 2010 and is now a part of the five days of holiday sales that start on Thanksgiving morning. The day encourages Americans to shop at local businesses.
A National Retail Federation poll estimates that more than 50 million people will shop at small businesses on Saturday, November 30.