Carmel Magazine

Spring/Summer 2020

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82 C A R M E L M A G A Z I N E • S P R I N G / S U M M E R 2 0 2 0 system. It includes a highly streamlined application process for nonprofits to obtain relief, as well as a brand-new program with the Monterey Peninsula Chamber of Commerce that is providing immediate loans and grants to local small businesses. Chamber CEO Frank Geisler says it's a small solution born from a new Covid-era program: a weekly, online roundtable of local business people and government officials. "We are getting ideas generated. More help will come out of this. A management plan will be ready when shelter-in- place is over. But I still think that we'll have to face a lot of hurts when the hospitality industry loses major events. Something happening to Car Week is devastating to so many—the big players and the small businesses that support those big players." The Chamber has more than 600 member businesses, representing an astounding 50,000 local employees. It is yet another of the many that had to cancel their annual fundraising gala, losing tens-of-thousands of dollars. "We are rolling with the punches," says Diane Mandeville, marketing director of The Cannery Row Company, whose businesses employ hun- dreds of locals in the hospitality arena. Cannery Row Company, helmed by local icon Ted Balestreri, also had two company-related fundraisers can- celled or postponed by the pandemic. "Not to be trite, but we operate as a family. When we knew we had to have people work from home, Ted said, 'I need to be the first person to know if anyone needs anything.' We are looking out for all our employees, from a par t-time food server to housekeepers who've been here from months to years." Mandeville has been in the hospitality busi- ness for decades, and she has hope. "I would say we are optimistic. The hospitality and tourism industr y have weathered many major crises—9/11, the reces- sion of 2008—and we know what the recovery times are. Well over 70 percent of our visitors drive here. They're also in the same time frame as we are, so as Northern California and the Central Valley are released, and we get comfortable in new normal, I don't have a doubt in my mind that when we reopen, we will return to safe travel." Mandeville isn't the only one adapting to the "new normal." Many groups, such as Ron Johnson and the Boys and Girls Clubs, have mobilized Community Foundation for Monterey County Women's Fund (virtual) Luncheon took place on Zoom. Community Foundation for Monterey County Women's Fund Luncheon took place on Zoom because the actual event was cancelled due to COVID-19.

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