Sena Christian is the managing editor for Comstock’s magazine. In her 10 years as a professional journalist, she has worked on staff for two newspapers and one newsweekly, and regularly freelanced for national publications. Most recently, she was an environmental journalism fellow at the University of Colorado Boulder. She earned degrees from UC Berkeley and University of Oregon. Read more at www.senachristian.com. On Twitter @SenaCChristian.
We asked readers to submit their picks for the Capital Region’s top entrepreneurs —and you answered. Our editorial team vetted almost 100 nominations, looking for innovative business ideas, interesting backstories, unique products and services and that ineffable “it” factor. And here they are…
For advocates looking to curb disposable plastic use and pollution through regulation, California represents the benchmark. But for industry groups, the regulation is overly burdensome, going too far to restrict what businesses can do, which they argue would ultimately increase costs for consumer goods.
Origin Materials is part of a small but growing bioplastics market. Regulation, recycling and changing consumer behavior have proven ineffective in curbing the environment impacts of plastic. With plastic production projected to double over the next 20 years, Origins founders think the key solution lies in the bottles themselves.
Raised in Oak Park and a Sacramento State graduate, Sacramento Police Chief Daniel Hahn brings a lifetime of local experience to the job. Rich Ehisen sat down with Hahn last January — exactly two months prior to the officer shooting of Stephon Clark — to discuss Hahn’s priorities for our April issue, which went to press just days after details of the shooting began to surface. We have updated the Q&A with a follow-up interview that took place in early April.
Sales tax just isn’t what it used to be in suburban shopping meccas, as nearly half of all American households now have an Amazon Prime membership. Now, Roseville is looking to residents to help prioritize city services and mitigate the lost revenue.
In a way, not much has changed.
At the Golden 1 Center, Sacramento Kings fans continue to wave cowbells at games, having long since embraced the once-insulting apparatus. The grub still costs a pretty penny. The team remains perpetually in a building year.
Vintage Monkey conducts antique motorcycle repairs like a well-oiled machine.
Raley’s recently nabbed the coveted Retailer of the Year award from Wine Enthusiast, thanks to Director of Alcohol and Beverage Curtis Mann
Comstock’s monthly look at the business news in the Capital Region. Here’s some stuff that happened in October.
For 10 years, Dana Chavez-Rey and her husband, Alex, ran a successful brick-and-mortar pet grooming salon in West Sacramento, handling up to 30 dogs and cats a day. Then, they went mobile.
The historic D.O. Mills Bank building, owned by the Cameron Family since 1922, is in the midst of massive transformation. The bank, slated to open this year, will be a three level 30,000 square-foot culinary destination.
Comstock’s monthly look at business news in the Capital Region. Want to know what happened in September? Then read on, my friends.
While many supporters of local music may agree that Sacramento needs a homegrown music festival, this type of event isn’t easy to produce, and doesn’t always get the financial backing it needs.
The Sacramento region’s urban farming movement keeps growing and growing, but the two farms that started it all — Soil Born Farms and Yisrael Family Urban Farm — remain the hub of the activity. Both farms focus on education as critical to expanding the movement even more, and giving residents old and young the know-how and tools to grow their own food.
In 2004, four years after launching their first farm, the founders of Soil Born Farms Urban Agriculture and Education Project incorporated their group as a nonprofit to help others see the value of growing food within cities, spreading the philosophy of “healthy food for all.”
Ten years into the movement, and urban farming in the Sacramento region has garnered widespread support. Agrihoods now represent the latest development in the movement — but will they strengthen or overshadow it?
Comstock’s monthly look at the business news in the Capital Region. Let’s take a peek at August.
Founded in 1996, Gutterglove recently doubled its space by moving from Rocklin to a 43,000-square-foot facility in Roseville where the company manufactures 60,000 feet of gutters in one day — all done by the hands of people.
The Capital Dance Project recently announced a partnership with the Sacramento Kings and the Kings Foundation to produce their inaugural Sensory-Friendly Dance Performance on Friday, Aug. 25 at Crest Theatre.
Comstock’s monthly look at the business news in the Capital Region. So what happened in July (and the tail end of June)?
The Americana rock ‘n’ roll band, The Nickel Slots went to Belgium for two weeks this summer for its third European tour, playing 11 straight shows.
According to numbers from the Sacramento Area Council of Governments, the region needs to be building an average of 12,000 homes per year to meet demand. Here are five projects in the works:
Punjabis first emigrated from India to California at the turn of the 20th century, and soon carved out a prominent role in the economy, culture and identity of Yuba City. They overcame discriminatory laws that prevented immigration, citizenship and land ownership — and have flourished. Most Punjabis in the Yuba City area practice Sikhism, a religion with values that resemble those in the U.S. Constitution. An estimated 15,000 Sikhs now live in the Yuba-Sutter area.
As the legend goes, Didar Singh Bains arrived in his new home of Yuba City in 1958 at age 18 with only $8 in his pocket, which was enough for him. A young immigrant from India with humble origins, he says he believed that in the U.S. “money could grow on trees.” In the course of his lifetime, that youthful optimism has proven true — at least figuratively.
Eugene Phillips, owner of Miyazaki Bath House and Gallery in Walnut Grove, fills two tubs with hot water in preparation for a two-hour soak.
Comstock’s monthly look at the business news in the Capital Region. We fondly remember what happened in May.
Andy Stone, head mechanic for Team Novo Nordisk, prepares a bike during training camp for the Amgen Tour of California’s Sacramento stage in May. A Sacramento native, Stone attended Encina High School where he took a Regional Occupation Program bicycle mechanic class. He worked at bike shops for several years before getting into race mechanics.
In the Sacramento region, at least one major medical provider is already on the same page with the benefits of OpenNotes. Across the country, an estimated 13 million patients can now access their notes. This open-source movement, proponents say, represents a shift away from a paternalistic model of medical care and toward a model of fully-engaged and informed patients. And that, they argue, is better for everyone.
Placer SPCA Behavior Department Coordinator Meghan Oliver conducts an assessment of every dog and cat that enters the Roseville shelter to ensure they are safe around other animals, children and the general public. Each assessment takes about 10 minutes and includes monitoring how the dog socializes, handles tolerance (Oliver holds the animal’s collar, picks up feet, opens the mouth), plays with toys and reacts to the removal of food.
Having a robust agricultural industry has meant accommodating crops and livestock by forcing out wildlife. Before farming came to the region 150 years ago, waterbird habitat was primarily provided by wetlands. Now managed wetlands make up only about one-third of their habitat in California and rice fields comprise nearly 60 percent.
Founded in 1946 by Ross Relles, Sr., Relles Florist is now in its fourth location on J Street in Sacramento (a second store on Howe Avenue has closed). After Ross died in 1972, sons Jim and Tom Relles took over; their sister JoAnn Bradley joined in 1975.
Glimpse the future of our region through the eyes of its emerging leaders in our annual salute to to young professionals.
Jessie Svozil uses glass cleaner and a cloth rag to wipe down the “Golden Teal Chandelier” in the lobby of the Crocker Art Museum. It’s important to always keep the artwork looking good: Dale Chihuly’s 2014 blown-glass sculpture is translucent, with colors representing Sacramento’s rivers and mining history.
Can Sacramento become a capital of entrepreneurship? Yes, agreed panelists at an event focused on innovation in the city, held Jan. 23 at the E. Claire Raley Studios for the Performing Arts in Midtown and co-hosted by California Groundbreakers and Comstock’s magazine.
Rachel Smith, the head mermaid at the Dive Bar on K Street in downtown Sacramento, prepares to enter the aquarium for a performance.
Roseville’s downtown — once the civic core — is now off the beaten path, given how the city has developed over the years, spreading out with subdivisions and new thoroughfares that keep people away from this original urban center.
Valarie Phillips sorts through clothing to be dry cleaned at Woodard-Ficetti Cleaners on J Street in Sacramento. She checks each garment, cleans the material under the arms and then handles any special spot-cleaning and scrubbing as dictated by a ticket attached to the clothing. Phillips, a Louisiana native, has worked at the cleaners for 22 years.
Each month, Comstock’s online features a different Startup of the Month. As 2016 comes to a close, we take one last look at these startups to see how they stack up.
More than simply an evening of musical theater fun, these sing-alongs raise money for Empire Arts Collective’s plan to eventually open a coworking theater space in Sacramento.
Artery Recordings is a modern-day label and sits under the umbrella of the Artery Foundation, a full-service artist management company based in Sacramento.
In May 2015, a pediatrician at Kaiser Permanente Roseville Medical Center pioneered a life-saving idea. It was remarkably simple, relatively inexpensive and would help address a public health crisis. Nurses would ask every mother of a newborn leaving the hospital if her baby had a safe place to sleep. If not, Kaiser would send the parent home with a free, portable Pack-N-Play.
The instructors at iFly Sacramento, in Roseville, do a practice round, as the controller manages air flow. Fans at the top of a vertical wind tunnel draw air through the flight chamber and then push it back down through the sides, creating a column of air. These instructors pride themselves on being able to take anyone off the street and introduce them to the sport of bodyflight.
Representatives from Warwick University had been scouting a prime spot to establish its graduate school in Roseville, but the search kept coming up empty. The city’s numerous shopping centers didn’t fit the vision of Warwick University. But recently they found their desired location: The former Fire Station No. 1.
Recently published book includes reflections on the changing landscape of California water by 20 top water leaders.
While California is all-consumed with water wars, the Sacramento region’s efforts toward collaboration are easy to overlook. The best example is the landmark Water Forum Agreement, which 22 water agencies from Sacramento, El Dorado and Placer counties signed in 2000 to balance the environmental and human needs of the lower American River. Now, water agencies have joined together to launch the River Arc Project.
Based on the enormity of this pressroom in Midtown, one wouldn’t think print newspapers are dying. The pressroom, a three-story labyrinth of rooms, stairwells and machinery, operates nearly 22 hours a day, printing five daily newspapers and six weekly publications.
Jeff Pettigrew prepares the inside padding of a casket at Pettigrew & Sons Casket Co., a family-run business in Sacramento founded by the late Fay Pettigrew, who is Jeff’s grandfather.
I had signed up for a four-mile Capital City Highlights Tour in Sacramento. I run, but I’m not a runner. Now, on a weekday morning, I’m greeted by my tour guide, a bonafide running beast, who launched a running-tour business in September. Would I be able to reach the finish line?
Bryan Valenzuela’s sculpture, “Multitudes Converge,” will illustrate the convergence of the Sacramento and American rivers, and it is one of four pieces of public art commissioned for the Golden 1 Center in downtown Sacramento.
Annie and Jeff Main started farming after college, inspired by the back-to-land movement of the 1970s. They farmed on rented land for 17 years and then bought their own 20 acres in Capay Valley, in Yolo County.