March 18, 2020
Whew, what a few days it has been. And I do mean days, because even though it seems like this has been our reality for weeks, just last Thursday everything was open. Isn’t that crazy?
This blog is just a very basic post about what switching to this new normal has been like for me. I’ll tell you - as an event planner, it has not been fun. Everything I do is based on people getting together on large scale events, and right now, we won’t be able to do that at least until May 8.
I’m watching myself and others take a major hit right now, and we don’t know when it will end. This isn’t to complain or make money the center of a global pandemic. It’s just stating a reality: small businesses like restaurants, breweries, event planners, venues and so many more are losing money right now. Their future businesses, and their sense of security, is in jeopardy. It’s scary.
BUT all we can do is look for the silver lining, and that’s what I’m choosing to do. I know this will pass, and entrepreneurs are made to think on their feet. We’ve already got some great things we’re working on, so stay tuned.
In the meantime, let’s talk about the ways you can still support businesses during this time, plus a few tips for working from home without going insane.
Support businesses and the economy… from home.
The way people have come together to support businesses that will be hurt by necessary social distancing measures has been inspiring to see as a business owner. I’m here to help spread the love. You can support any local business now by following them on social media, engaging with their posts, and, if they’re a business you absolutely cannot support right now for any reason, keeping them in mind when the air clears - literally.
Some have asked how they can best support J. Leigh during this time. We’re still working on a few things, but each of those steps outlined above are major. You can also help by booking fall and winter events early and leaving a Google Review for my business if we’ve worked together in the past. Thank you to everyone who has reached out recently - it means the world.
I’ve also been continually inspired by the way some of my favorite Charlotte businesses have pivoted and found new ways to get their products and services to the public during this strange time. Here’s a quick list of just a few:
Lincoln’s Haberdashery - You can’t congregate inside, but you can pick up your food, sweet treats or mimosa kits curbside. Click here to head to their website.
Girl Tribe Co. - They may have closed their stores but you can still shop online, and they’re offering major deals, too! Their website is here.
That’s Novel Books - After only 2 weeks open, the store had to close down. Luckily, you can still pick up your books curbside. Here are the details.
Leah & Louise - Award-winning chef Greg Collier was set to open his second restaurant on March 20. Instead, you can check out the incredible food via curbside pick up. Get updates here.
Julia Fay Photography - She’s still taking on photoshoots as long as they’re one-on-one and no one is sick! She’s offering a deal on headshots right now. Head to her site.
JJ Horton Photography - If you’re feeling the need to change up your space now that you’re in it all the time, why not order some new fine art prints? Check out her store.
Esther & Elsa - To keep everyone sane right now, they’re asking other local business owners to participate in daily challenges with them via social media. It’s a great way to stay involved with a community while staying safe. They’ll post details on their Instagram daily.
Digi-Bridge - This local nonprofit offers STEAM programming to kids, and they had to postpone one of their major annual fundraisers, Bots + Brews. You can help them by donating on their website - just click here.
Piedmont Culinary Guild - This Charlotte nonprofit connects and offers resources to the city’s chefs, farmers, culinary educators, and food artisans. You can donate to their cause here.
Teach for America - This is an uncertain and confusing time for many of our city’s educators. Teach for America will be helping support our local schools educate our youth. You can help by donating here.
Above all right now, we at J. Leigh Events ask you to be kind and patient to everyone. We are all confused, and ready to leave our homes, and maybe even a little scared. Let’s do our best support and love each other in any way we can.
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Happy National Beer Day!
If you're beer lovers like us, or maybe your new to craft beer and want to try something new, I thought it would be fun to showcase some of our favorite beer and party food appetizer pairings. You can use this post as a guide when planning a party for yourself or your favorite beer drinkers!