Obama's Inauguration & the impact on 3 small businesses

by Jill Foster on January 27, 2009


4 quarters, $1 get your 4 stickers, 2 keychains for 4 quarters, $1 -chanting street vendors in Chinatown, Washington, DC for Inauguration2009 events

It’s great living in the District.

Pulsing excitement and nerves
I live a few minutes walking distance to the White House (and with ready sneakers plus an hour, the inauguration site is walkable too). From most every neighborhood eatery to street-side vendor to office window, the inauguration permeates this city. Washington, DC for weeks now has exuded bionic excitement and edgy nerves to prepare for 3 million or more visitors to welcome our new president. And with some organizations planning over 3,500 events honoring the occasion locally and nationally, the buzz just…pulsates.

Inauguration’s influence on (3) women-owned businesses

It’s been a strange thrill watching this town unfurl security measures plus street and bridge closures to organize. And it’s been as insightful learning specific stories from a few local businesses on how they’ve prepared or adjusted operations.

A quick boots on the ground commentary:

Floriana’s Mercury Grill: changing from Clinton to Obama
Many businesses have presented Obama posters to show a sign of local support as he’s officially ushered in. What struck about Floriana’s is that months ago during the primaries, support for Clinton appeared where Obama support is now displayed. For this historical occasion, it’s interesting to see businesses reveal community support.

Eye Street Massage Therapy: halting business
Just after inauguration ceremonies, the inauguration parade will flow up Pennsylvania Avenue near key business districts in the area. Staff at Eye Street Massage Therapy clinic at first was keen to work through events or at least observe festivities from their office. Yet as of Monday, 3:00pm, 1/19th, all businesses in the parade route’s restricted zone were closed for security measures. Business will not re-open until 1/21st, the day after official inaugural events occur.

Prego Cafe: redirecting staff due to closed bridges
Ms. Sun runs the local Prego Cafe (on 17th Street & Corcoran NW, without a website). She’s prepared for long hours to make her team available to the visiting crowds yet had to set boundaries for her team. Her crew resides in Virginia; and on Inauguration Day, main Virginia bridge routes into the city will close off. Ms. Sun requested her staff take extended commutes via Maryland to enter the District.

More features to follow with a more immediate goal right now: starting the foot commute to the inauguration ceremony.

(image by Jill Foster)

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