Ocean Seashore welcomes summer season with smaller, business-friendly honest

After greater than a yr of battling the financial results of the COVID-19 pandemic, a number of companies in Ocean Seashore on Saturday celebrated the beginning of summer season with the return of its long-time conventional honest — albeit with a twist this yr.

The Ocean Seashore MainStreet Affiliation hosted “Rejoice the OB Vibe,” a free neighborhood occasion alongside the waterfront on Abbot Road to help companies affected by the pandemic akin to its annual Ocean Seashore Road Honest and Chili Cookoff.

This yr’s occasion was held on a smaller scale and arrange in parking tons, relatively than on streets close to the seaside. As a result of uncertainty of health-related restrictions, the standard occasion was canceled in 2020 and this yr.

“Retailers have had sufficient setbacks and it is a time to have fun,” stated Barbara Iacometti, president of the affiliation. “We have now bars, breweries, retailers, eating places and we have to help them. This setup provides everybody an opportunity to come back out and help our companies, in addition to our artists.”

Companies alongside Abbott Road and Newport Avenue stored busy all through the day as some had traces of shoppers wrap round their storefronts. Whereas the pandemic introduced forth challenges for companies, the world has not seen a rise in vacant storefronts like another neighborhoods.

“Proper now we’re full. There aren’t any companies which are out,” stated Tracy Wagner, operations supervisor with the affiliation. “A variety of companies deferred their lease. There’s numerous companies which are ready to see what occurs after summer season, however summer season is our busy time and that’s when most retailers make their cash.”

Dozens of native artisans promoting handmade items and leisure for kids additionally noticed heavy foot site visitors.

Amongst them was El Cajon resident Kathy Ford, who sells plant hangers, mild pendants and hand-dyed wall décor. She started her small enterprise throughout the COVID-19 lockdown final yr.

On the Rad Hatter sales space, from left, Ashley Andrade, Ciera Lazott, Laurel Inexperienced and Jake Brown, create hats out of paper luggage on the Rejoice the OB Vibe competition Saturday.

(Nelvin C. Cepeda/The San Diego Union-Tribune)

“I’ve a enterprise administration job, and we’ve been working from house. Final yr, I wanted to have a inventive outlet. I’m a really inventive particular person. I simply began making issues for family and friends, after which I began my store,” stated Ford. “Being out right here in the present day is simply nice to see folks’s reactions in particular person after simply interacting on-line.”

An in-person expertise with others was a plus for most of the a number of hundred guests that occupied the Ocean Seashore waterfront.

“It’s great to have the ability to stroll down the road, come down right here and see different children. It’s superior to be round different children,” stated resident Dave Jalonen, who made kites along with his daughter and spouse Ruth at a sales space hosted by the Kiwanis Membership of Ocean Seashore.

The Kiwanis Membership had additionally paused its annual kite competition as a result of pandemic however made a comeback Saturday by offering about 1,000 free kites for kids to brighten, arrange and fly alongside the seaside.

A hat creation at the Celebrate the OB Vibe festival Saturday.

A hat creation on the Rejoice the OB Vibe competition Saturday.

(Nelvin C. Cepeda/The San Diego Union-Tribune)

At Ocean Seashore resident Tony Melendez’s Rad Hatter sales space, guests may adorn paper hats utilizing a wide range of artwork provides.

“That is artwork remedy. Persons are strolling round with their hats and others are saying, ‘Hey, you look good in your hat,’ and that’s good as a result of folks’s esteem has been down throughout the pandemic,” he stated. The occasion additionally marked his official return to enterprise, he stated, since COVID-19 halted him from doing his common of about 170 annual reveals, the place he gives occasion leisure along with his interactive artwork.

Saturday’s occasion additionally featured reside music, video games and raffles, and different meals distributors. The affiliation’s conventional avenue honest — with its common chili cookoff — is slated to return in June 2022.

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