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Startup of the Month: wimZr

With this app, it's not just who you know but when you meet them

New app wimZr’s main focus is people. The interface is straightforward. You view the profiles of people going to the same place. If you like them, click “Connect Me.” If you want to pass, click “Next Time.” If the person you like likes you back, you can start talking. For upcoming events, you can scan guest lists and either connect one-on-one or openly in a public forum.

Jan 4, 2016 Russell Nichols
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A Cup of Cheer

Starbucks transcends hokey marketing tactics with its controversial 2015 holiday cup

It’s no secret Starbucks’ holiday cuptroversy has created a lot of extra buzz for them this season. By removing the ‘“symbols of the season,” the coffee giant is being accused of going overboard to be politically correct. This new, bold design ignited an overblown conspiracy theory that got the internet chattering. But instead of mourning the loss of kitschy graphics, we are applauding Starbucks on their brand’s success.

Dec 17, 2015 Rebecca Plumb & Meghan Phillips

‘Tis the Season to Support Small Business

A year after opening, Display: California rings in the ‘HollaDays’ once again

One year ago, the husband-and-wife team of Roshaun and Maritza Davis opened their Display: California pop-up retail store, selling holiday gifts from about 30 artists in the Sacramento area. They called it, “The HollaDays.” The “HollaDays” are back at the shop’s location on 34th Street and Broadway in Sacramento’s Oak Park neighborhood. But Display isn’t simply a seasonal gift shop. 

Dec 16, 2015 Joan Cusick
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Business Vacay

The millennial approach to business travel

According to a recent article, millennials are not frugal when it comes to company cash. Recent research shows that millennials spend more money on business trips than either gen X or baby boomers — on costly expenses ranging from flight upgrades to hotel room service.

Nov 17, 2015 Kiara Reed

Brewed by Design

The brewery tasting room is a new kind of social space, where ambience matters as much as ale

Wine tasting is often an experience shared only by the taster and pourer. A brewery tasting room, however, needs to facilitate the gregariously social aspects of craft beer, making space for interaction and mingling. Room to brew, room to chat and room to sample flights of beer make for highly dynamic spaces that bring to life the distinct personalities of brewers and their art.

Oct 20, 2015 Andy Galloway
Shelves at Oto’s Market off Freeport Boulevard in Sacramento brim with Japanese imports and local produce

Global Flavors Next Door

The rising popularity of ethnic grocers is impacting everyday dining

Where in your local supermarket do you find the curry leaves? How about dumplings filled with red bean paste, or maybe smoked duck. Does your local grocer have fresh menudo, warm tortillas right out of the oven, or miso broth prepared that morning on-site? Independent grocery stores focused on specific ethnic cuisines are thriving in Sacramento, enjoying a boom in customers from beyond their base cultural markets.

Oct 12, 2015 Andy Galloway
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Start Smart by Starting Small

ShopSmart nurtures small retailers, one square foot at a time

When Faiz Saif got his electrical engineering degree from Sacramento State in 2010, he never dreamt his business card would say “Owner, Clothes For Bros” just a few short years later. But thanks to a downturned economy and the presence of a unique store in south Sacramento, Saif isn’t looking for an electrical engineering job anymore. Instead, he’s looking to expand his growing business into a retail empire.

Oct 7, 2015 Robin Epley

NeighborWorks Paint the Town

Nearly 150 volunteers spent Saturday, September 19, sprucing up 10 homes in South Oak Park during the 26th annual Paint the Town event, sponsored by NeighborWorks HomeOwnership Center Sacramento Region. 

Sep 21, 2015 Joan Cusick
The set for Idris Goodwin’s “Bars and Measures,” which will end its run at B Street Theatre on Sept. 27, marries structural design with elements of movement and careful light choreography. Though many audience members probably don't realize it, the amount of conceptualizing, visualizing and manpower it takes to be prepared for opening night is immense.

The Team Behind the Scene

B Street Theatre

“We are lucky to work with a great team here, because this is not always easy,” says set designer and charge artist for B Street Theatre Samantha Reno. “You have to be flexible, you have to be quick and you have to make good, solid decisions. The schedule can be grueling, but the show must go on.”

Sep 18, 2015 Kelly Higdon
Photos courtesy of William Glen

The Gift Shop That Keeps On Giving

After years in limbo, William Glen returns with the old spirit for a new generation

For most people, William Glen was an enduring symbol of simpler times, a homegrown survivor of bad economies and big department chains. For Mark Snyder, the store was a family treasure. His father, Bill Snyder, co-founded the original store more than 50 years ago. But in 2010, the William Glen story became a tragedy, closing down after Bill passed away from lung cancer. 

Sep 11, 2015 Russell Nichols