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Bi-Weekly COVID-19 Update – July 21, 2020

How Café Neo Hopes to Build a Sense of Community During COVID-19 

Café Neo opened in late June of 2020 in Revolution Square on Stony Plain Road (10062R 151St NW). The little coffee shop is managed by Zana and Antonio, both of whom love coffee and people and cannot wait to meet more of the surrounding community. Their passion is to create a space where people feel welcome, loved, creative ad open for genuine connection. The idea behind creating Café Neo emerged out of passion for creating a positive customer experience. The Neo brand is rooted in the making of high quality beverages, started by their sister company, Neo Juicery. At Café Neo, they offer a selection of fresh cold pressed juices, tasty snacks and sandwiches that complement their core product: coffee! 

“Our sister company, Neo Juicery, made plans to set up a shop in this building and as a brand, we felt like we needed to create a new place to build community in the area around Revolution Square,” Zana tells us, “A coffeehouse is the best way we felt we could do that.” 

Café Neo combines the freshness and vibrancy of the Neo brand with a welcoming and positive atmosphere for their neighbours and community to relax in. Both Café Neo and Neo Juicery are developed and owned by local entrepreneur, Ala, Kareema, Daniel and Jonathan. Neo Juicery was established in 2017 and has been serving Edmontonians with fresh cold-pressed plant-based beverages ever since. Through the Neo brand, they as a team, wanted to create a new experience for customers, so they dreamt up Café Neo. Both are located in the same building, opposite of each other, with a shared food development space in the middle that serves the production of Neo Juicery’s products and the catering of all of Café Neo’s foods, drinks, and snacks. 

The inspiration for Café Neo, both in brand and in atmosphere, came from the roots of traditional coffee experienced in the Middle East. They aspired to take that warm, traditional and authentic coffee experience and modernize it to fit the area and clientele around Revolution Square. With that, a pop of colour was added in the space, along with a delectable menu of fresh and exciting new beverages, and an authentic coffee menu to inspire even the most selective coffee connoisseurs. 

“We believe Café Neo is a unique business in Edmonton because we combine our passion for food, coffee and people with a deep desire to build and grow beyond the boundaries of our space,” states Zana, “When you walk into Café Neo, you’re not just walking in to grab a coffee; you’re walking into a family of dedicated entrepreneurs that want Café Neo to be your daily fuel stop.” 

In the case of opening the business during the pandemic, the Café believes they have been exceptionally lucky to have been at the tail end of setting up things when COVID-19 hit Edmonton hard. It did delay them, but they hadn’t yet opened their doors which was for the best. Not having opened yet bought them some time to adjust their business plan and reconfigure how they would do things. 

“COVID-19 definitely reduced our capacity to offer the full vision behind Café Neo, due to space and size restrictions, and concerns around customer safety,” says Zana, “That being said, Edmontonians really have stuck together during this time, and we have experiences a lot of patience, kindness and support from the community around us as we stumble sometimes to make things work.” 

Some precautions that Café Neo has taken include reducing their menu offerings to take-out friendly options and have only been offering foods and beverages in take-out containers. They have also reduced seating capacity and adjusted how they configured space to allow for ample room between tables and chairs for social distancing. In addition to this the business has also amplified their sanitation procedures and added safety tools such as social distancing stickers, maks and gloves for staff, and a sanitation station at the entrance and exit. 

The next time you’re craving a coffee or juice, stop by and try Café Neo, they love hearing feedback on how they can improve and create what people want in the area.

Visit them on Facebook for more info and to stay up to date! 

If you would like to see your Stony Plain Road & Area business featured on our blog, please contact communications.spr@gmail.com


Symptoms and Testing: COVID-19 

Who can be tested? 

Any person who wants to be tested, can now be tested, even if they do not have symptoms. 

The following groups will continue to receive priority: 

– Any person exhibiting any symptom of COVID-19 

– All close contacts of confirmed COVID-19 cases 

– All workers and/or residents at specific outbreak sites

– All workers and/or residents at long-term care and level 4 supportive living facilities 

– All patients admitted to continuing care and hospital settings. 

Click here for a COVID-19 Assessment Flowchart

Click here to book a COVID-19 Test


Canada to Go

10 students from UBC (University of British Columbia) have put together a resource listing businesses from all over Canada. The website contains a simple list of local restaurants, cafes, and breweries, which are currently open to serve us, with their updated operating hours and offerings. They are hoping that this will allow customers to see what options still exist for them while providing some support for local restaurants who are operating with severe resource constraints due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

So far, the website has over 1000 businesses spanning from Vancouver to Halifax. An area on this resource that is lacking is the listing of Stony Plain Road & Area businesses. We encourage businesses in the area to post their information on the site so more people can reach you. You can list your businesses and find out more here: https://www.canadatogo.ca/  


Quick Reference Resources for Businesses

Alberta Biz Connect – Biz Connect provides workplace guidance and supports to help businesses and non-profits affected by COVID-19 begin to reopen and resume operations safely. 

Visit Biz Connect here

Business Licence Fee Reduction – To help businesses experiencing financial hardship due to the COVID-19 situation, the City is offering a 50 percent business licence fee reduction upon request for businesses that renew or apply for a new business licence between June 1 and December 31, 2020. To request the fee reduction, please renew or apply for your new licence by calling 780.442.5311 or emailing businesslicenseapplications@edmonton.ca 

One-on-One Support for Edmonton Businesses – Do you have questions about the City of Edmonton or supports available to your business? Email businessinfo@edmonton.ca and they’ll do their best to assist you. 

Personal Protective Equipment for Businesses – The City has developed this list for local businesses that may need personal protective equipment (PPE) 

The list can be found here

Small & Medium Enterprise Relaunch Grant – The Small & Medium Enterprise Relaunch Grant offers financial assistance to Alberta businesses, cooperatives, and non-profit organizations that were ordered to close or curtail operations, and that experienced a revenue reduction of at least 50 percent, as a result of COVID-19. 

The Government of Alberta has committed up to $200 million in funding for this program. 

Applications will remain open until August 31, or for 4 weeks following the start of phase 3 of Alberta’s Relaunch Strategy – whichever is later. 

More info 

Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) – This wage subsidy will enable you to rehire workers previously laid off as a result of COVID-19, help prevent further job losses, and better position you to resume normal operations following the crisis. On July 17, 2020 the government proposed changes to CEWS including the extension of CEWS until Dec 19, 2020. 

Learn more here.


 Engagement Assistant Reaching Out to SPR Businesses

Stony Plain Road & Area businesses will be hearing from our new Engagement Assistant, Leo, in the upcoming days and weeks to get some updated information on your businesses. To ensure that our directories are up to date and make sure everything is in order Leo will be doing his best to reach every one of you! Please give him a warm welcome to the BIA when he reaches out! 


The Stony Plain Road & Area BIA (Business Improvement Area) is Looking for Participation From Businesses for a Scavenger Hunt! 

This summer the Stony Plain Road and Area BIA is launching a shop local initiative to encourage our community members to engage and explore the businesses within our district. We are currently planning a digital initiative with the working title “Secrets of Stony Plain Road: Scavenger Challenge” on our social media channels that will allow the community to learn about our district, explore the area, and support our businesses while staying safe during the ongoing concerns of COVID-19. Our tentative dates for this challenge are August 7th to 21st.

What It Is:

– Each day we will post a question about a landmark, historical fact, or business in the BIA on our various social media channels  

– Participants who answer correctly will be entered into a daily draw to win a certificate / gift card or prize package to a local business for a minimum of $25.

– If they visit a location specified in the post and post a photo at the location to their social media, they receive an additional entry to the daily draw. 

– Those who participate each day of the scavenger hunt are entered to win a grand prize of products and gift cards / certificates to local businesses valued at a minimum of $250.

We are looking for participation from our businesses in three areas:

– We are looking to feature a variety of diverse businesses with interesting facts about their products or services or in a building with a recognizable landmark. The facts or landmark can be widely known, as we are looking for a range of difficulty in our questions. 

– We will be purchasing the certificates / gift cards, prize packages from our local businesses for each of the daily prizes and are looking for at least ten businesses that are willing to match our contribution for the grand prize through donation of a product, service, or certificate. 

– We are also asking willing businesses to promote the initiative on their social media channels to increase participation and awareness.

Reasons to participate:

– Participating businesses will receive business exposure and promotion through our social media as well as any other channels that share the initiative.

– We will attach your logo and business information on our promotional materials posted on our website and social media. 

– Winners of prizes will have the opportunity to try your products. The goal of the grand prize is to provide community members with the opportunity to try a range of products and services in our BIA that they may not have been aware of.

Please fill out this google form if you are interested in partnering with us for this initiative: https://forms.gle/zvudsGAVbvZts1TF9

Please contact Jane at shoplocal.spr@gmail.com if you have any inquiries. 


Speeding Through Summer with Revolution Cycle

  For Jesse Aronyk, Revolution Cycle, located at 15103 Stony Plain Road, is more than a bike shop, it’s home. In 1991, Aronyk’s father, Dennis, and his father’s older brother, Al, founded Revolution Cycle. Al has since retired, but Dennis remains in the office and on the sales floor daily. The concept of the shop was simple; to create a bicycle shop and hub for the cycling community that didn’t exist yet. Their mission was to build a store that catered to beginners and enthusiasts alike, while housing the largest inventory within the bike industry. Nearly 30 years later, they have brought that vision to life while exceeding their own expectations. 

Revolution Cycle provides a number of different services to the community including a full service repair shop, spin classes, rentals, maintenance courses, a party venue for renting as well as selling bicycle related things such as bikes, accessories, clothing, tools and parts. It is truly a one stop shop! 

“Revolution Cycle has always been unique due to its physical size and large inventory,” Aronyk tells us, “But this year we developed a new online store that truly sets us apart from any of our competitors.” Shopping online with Revolution Cycle has never been easier! 

The COVID-19 pandemic has created some challenges for the store, but they have already come out stronger since the start of it all. Their hours have been cut down, and they have created a line up outside the store for any customers wanting to come inside and shop. Revolution Cycle have taken many precautions to limit people in the store, and create a safer shopping experience. This has resulted in a smoother buying experience for their customers. Once a customer is let inside the store, they will be assigned a salesperson who will walk them through every step of the sale. This ensures the customer finds exactly what they need in a more efficient way rather than just browsing and guessing.

The online store has made life easier for customers who prefer to not shop in public, and they can also request curbside pickup or delivery of their items. Overall, the pandemic has created a buying surge for bikes and bicycle related products! 

“We have never been busier, and our stock is getting low, but luckily we were able to secure several shipments of quality bikes to replenish the stock for Edmontonians with any budget to come and shop,” states Aronyk. 

Shopping local during times like this is very important to Revolution Cycle as it keeps locally owned companies from going out of business. 

“Keeping these businesses open prevents massive corporations from taking over all of Edmonton’s fun and unique small businesses,” says Aronyk.

For a full list of Revolution Cycle’s product and service offerings, you can visit their website.

If your Stony Plain Road & Area businesses would like to be featured on our blog, please reach out to communications.spr@gmail.com

Bi-Weekly COVID-19 Update – July 7, 2020

Jasmine Nails and Lash Bar Opens Amid Alberta’s Phase 2 Relaunch 

On Monday, June 29, 2020, Jasmine Nails and Lash Bar Opened its location on 14917 Stony Plain Road. According to owner, Ada, the location is a beauty salon that specializes in nails and eyelash extensions. Jasmine Nails and Lash Bar is built around a modern concept and design with a focus on customer comfort and confidence. 

Ada tells us that she has been in the beauty industry for as long as she could remember and has owned two beauty salons before this one. The business offers a wide range of services that can be found on their website. They offer manis, pedis, acrylics, eyelash extensions, waxing and much more! 

The goal of the salon is to offer a nice and relaxing environment where customers of all ages can come in and relax after a long day. The location are licenced to serve alcoholic beverages so clients can enjoy a refreshment while getting their hands/feet done. This is also perfect for any customers who want to bring in their wedding party for a private group booking. 

Jasmine Nails and Lash bar prides itself in a clean environment and they follow very strict sanitary procedures. 

“The numerous amount of plants help absorb some of the toxins in the air that can arise from the chemicals in nail products,” Ada tells us. 

The salon was in the midst of renovating when COVID-19 was established in Edmonton, so an executive decision was made to take small steps in opening for business. Due to the pandemic, the business drastically reduced the number of appointments they take. 

“It is a difficult time for small/new businesses, however we are doing the best we can,” states Ada, “I am very grateful for any support we receive.” 

With everything that is going on around the world, the salon is very cautious about how they operate. They have reduced their occupancy capacity to a maximum of only two clients and 2-3 staff members. Clients are not to bring in any guests to ensure that social distancing can be maintained within the salon. 

“Supporting small businesses is especially crucial during this time because many of us are struggling to keep afloat,” says Ada, “Small businesses build close ties with their clients and bring character to the community and by supporting your local business you are putting that money back into your community.” 

Jasmine Nails and Lash Bar is currently hiring nail techs and lash techs! Please email Ada at jasminenailslashbar@gmail.com for more information! 

For more info on the salon please visit their website

Follow them on Instagram and Facebook to keep up to date and to enter their occasional giveaway! 

You can also check out a TikTok featuring the salon here!

If you are interested in having your SPR business profiled for our blog, please contact communications.spr@gmail.com.. 


Small & Medium Enterprise Relaunch Grant 

The Small & Medium Enterprise Relaunch Grant offers financial assistance to Alberta businesses, cooperatives, and non-profit organizations that were ordered to close or curtail operations, and that experienced a revenue reduction of at least 50 per cent, as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The Government of Alberta has committed up to $200 million in funding for this program. 

Applications will remain open until August 31, or for 4 weeks following the start of Phase 3 of Alberta’s Relaunch Strategy – whichever is later. 

For more information: Small & Medium Enterprise Relaunch Grant or PDF


Alberta Biz Connect 

Biz Connect provides workplace guidance and supports to help businesses and non-profits affected by COVID-19 begin to reopen and resume operations safely. 

Check out Biz Connect


Mandatory Isolation

Albertans are legally required to isolate for: 

– 14 days if they returned to or entered Alberta from outside Canada or if they have been in close contact with someone with COVID-19 

– 10 days if they have any symptoms that are not related to a pre-existing illness or health condition; cough, fever, shortness of breath, runny nose or sore throat. 

If you have symptoms, take the online assessment to arrange testing.

Alberta is also testing anyone who wants to be tested.

How to Isolate: 

– Stay home – do not leave your home or attend work, school, social events or any other public gatherings. 

– Avoid close contact with people in your household, especially seniors and people with chronic conditions or compromised immune systems

– You are prohibited from taking public transportation like buses, taxis or ride-sharing.

– Do not go outside for a walk through your neighbourhood or park. This includes children in mandatory isolation. 

– You can get fresh air in your backyard if you have one, but you must remain on private property not accessible by others. 

– If you live in an apartment building or highrise, you must stay inside and cannot use the elevators or stairways to go outside. If your balcony is private and at least 2 metres away from your closest neighbour’s, you may go outside on the balcony. 


Business Licence Fee Reduction

To help support businesses experiencing financial hardship due to the COVID-19 situation, the City is offering a 50 percent business licence fee reduction upon request for businesses that renew or apply for a new business licence between June 1 and December 31, 2020. To request the fee reduction, please renew or apply for your new licence by calling 780.442.5311 or emailing businesslicenceapplications@edmonton.ca..



One-On-One Support for Edmonton Businesses

Do you have questions about the City of Edmonton or supports available to you? Email businessinfo@edmonton.ca and they’ll do their best to assist you! 


Personal Protective Equipment for Businesses 

The City has developed this list for local businesses that may need personal protective equipment (PPE) 

This list can be found here: List of PPE Suppliers


Bi-Weekly COVID-19 Update – June 23, 2020

Although we are currently in Phase 2 of Alberta’s relaunch strategy, it is important that we remember that the COVID-19 virus is not gone. Please continue to practice social distancing, good hygiene and continue to wear masks for the safety of yourself and those around you.


City of Edmonton – Economic Recovery Grant 

The City of Edmonton has launched the Edmonton Economic Recovery Grant. This grant is available in two streams and is designed to help businesses recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

This grant provides local businesses and business organizations with flexible funding in order to relaunch and strengthen their business models. 

Grant Streams: 

1. Grants for Individual Businesses: 

Businesses are able to apply for grants valued at $100, $2500, $5000, depending on circumstances and scale. The intake opens each Monday at 9:00am. Prepare your responses in advance and enter answers. Applications are limited each week. These grants are meant to support immediate need and longer term recovery efforts of businesses. Larger grants will be available in Phase 2 (January 2021) for businesses who have not received funding in Phase 1. 

More information here:
https://www.edmonton.ca/programs_services/funding_grants/individual-business-grants.aspx

2. Grants for Organizations, Associations, and Groups: 

Does your organization support local businesses and our local economy? You may be eligible for a “Business Association” grant. 

These grants allow for up to $75,000 in matching funds directed towards business associations, organizations, and other groups which support local business, economic development, and play a role in COVID-19 economic recovery.

More information here:
https://www.edmonton.ca/programs_services/funding_grants/grants-for-organizations.aspx

The City will begin re-accepting applications for both streams on Monday, June 29 at 9:00am. 


Casting Call! Share Your Love for Your Favourite SPR Business! 

Casting agency, Groundglass Casting is currently working on a Visa campaign where everyday people recommend one their favourite Canadian small businesses! 

The company is looking for recommendations for any type of business, from restaurants, to clothing, barber shops, tattoo parlours, yoga studios, etc.

For people interested in applying, they would need to record a quick 15-30 second video recommending one of their favourite small local Canadian (SPR) businesses. If selected, the person (customer) who applies would receive $300, while the business would receive free publicity through Visa! 

This is a great campaign to share with loyal and passionate customers to promote your business! 

Learn more here: 
https://irecommend.castingcrane.com/


CERB Extension! 

The Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) has been extended from 16 weeks to 24 weeks for workers who: 

– Stopped working due to COVID-19 or 

– Are eligible for Employment Insurance regular or sickness benefits or

– Have exhausted their Employment Insurance regular benefits or Employment Insurance fishing benefits between December 29, 2019 and October 3, 2020. 

Only apply for the CERB through either Service Canada or the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) – NOT BOTH. 

You may be eligible for support via other programs as well. Answer some questions to find financial help during COVID-19 here:
https://covid-benefits.alpha.canada.ca/en/start


Bill 23 Commercial Tenancies Protection Act 

Proposed legislation will safeguard businesses from eviction, and more, as Alberta deals with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The act would protect eligible commercial tenants from having their leases terminated due to non-payment of rent as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. If passed, the act would also prevent landlords from raising rent and charging late fees and penalties on missed rent.

The new measures will help address shortfalls in the current Canada Emergency Commercial Rent (CECRA) program, and will give eligible business owners a peace of mind as they reopen and help with the provincial economic recovery. 

More information here:
https://www.alberta.ca/release.cfm?xID=72618743EAD85-9C35-EF4B-9D68C122EA1C2DFF#ableg


Bi-Weekly COVID-19 Update – June 9, 2020

What to Expect in Alberta’s STAGE 2 Relaunch 

Today, the Premier announced a date for the Province’s move into stage 2 of the relaunch, which will be Friday, June 12, 2020. Stage 2 will allow additional businesses and services to reopen and resume operations starting June 12 with 2 metre distancing requirements and other public health guidelines in place. 

What can reopen with restrictions? 

– Libraries

– Wellness services such as massage, acupuncture, and reflexology

– Personal services (esthetics, cosmetics, skin and body treatments, manicures, pedicures, waxing, facial treatments, artificial tanning) 

– Movie theatres and theatres

– Community halls

– Team sports

– Indoor recreation, fitness and sports, including gyms and arenas

– Pools for leisure swimming

– VLTs in restaurants and bars

– Bingo halls and casinos (but not table games)

– Instrumental concerts

– Provincial campgrounds at full capacity

Events and gatherings that can be larger in stage 2: 

50 people max: Indoor gatherings, including weddings and funeral receptions, and birthday parties. 

100 people max: Outdoor events and indoor seated/audience events, including wedding and funeral ceremonies

No cap on the number of people (with health measures in place): 

– Worship gatherings

– Restaurant, Cafés, Lounges and Bars

– Casinos

– Bingo Halls

Still not approved in stage 2: 

– Social gatherings that exceed about listed maximums

– Vocal concerts

– Major festivals and concerts, large conferences, trade shows and events (as these are non-seated social events and/or vocal concerts) 

– Nightclubs

– Amusement Parks

– Hookah lounges 

– Major sporting events & tournaments 

– Non-essential travel outside the Province is not recommended – this won’t be lifted until stage 3 of the relaunch strategy

The success of stage 2 will determine when Alberta progresses to stage 3. 


Edmonton Launches First Phase of Recovery Grant Program for Businesses 

Our Executive Director, Todd Janes, spoke with CBC News to discuss Edmonton’s recovery grant program for businesses. Check out the article here:
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/edmonton/edmonton-city-council-covid-19-1.5603919

More information on how to apply for this grant will be available here in the upcoming days:
https://www.edmonton.ca/programs_services/funding_grants/edmonton-economic-recovery-grant.aspx


Last Call: COVID-19 Check-In Survey

We appreciate the time that a variety of SPR businesses have taken to complete our survey on the impacts of COVID-19. To get the best possible idea of how we can support businesses as the Province continues its relaunch, we encourage as many businesses as possible to complete this survey. We will also be posting this survey on our social media channels tomorrow, so feel free to share! 

https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/ZZ2GPDV


Free Masks for Albertans Through McDonalds, Tim Hortons & A&W Drive-Thrus

You can now get 4 free non-medical masks per person at any Alberta McDonalds, A&W and Tim Hortons drive-thru locations. These are available with no purchase necessary, while supplies last. 

If you can’t access a participating drive-thru location, you are encouraged to ask a family member, friend, or neighbour to pick up your four masks. You can also call 211 for help. 

Masks will also be provided to the following groups to distribute to the community: 

– Communities more than 50 km from a drive-thru location

– Long-term care and seniors facilities

– Groups and organizations that support vulnerable Albertans 

– First Nations and Metis settlements communities 

– Edmonton and Calgary (for transit users) 

-Places of worship

Why use a mask?

Albertans are encouraged to wear non-medical masks in public when it’s difficult to maintain physical distancing of 2 metres at  all times. 

Wearing a homemade mask or non-medical mask in public is another tool to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. It hasn’t been proven that masks protect the person wearing it, but it can help protect people from being exposed to your germs. 

Masks should complement, not replace other prevention measures. Continue physical distancing, good hand hygiene, and stay home when sick. 


ABTraceTogether App

Help prevent the spread of COVID-19 with the ABTraceTogether mobile app. The mobile app helps to let you know if you’ve been exposed to COVID-19 – or if you’ve exposed others – while protecting your privacy. 

Quickly identifying and isolating positive cases is an important part of our our response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and preventing the spread. The more Albertans who voluntarily download and use the app, the safer we’ll be. 

If you’re exposed to COVID-19, Alberta Health Services (AHS) will use information from the app to contact you on the number you used to register your account. AHS Contact Tracers will tell you about your risk of exposure and the actions you should take. 

If you get COVID-19, you’ll be asked to volunteer your ABTraceTogether logs so other users that you’ve had close contact with can be notified. 


Bi-Weekly COVID-19 Update – May 26, 2020

How SPR’s The Flag Shop is Supporting the Community During COVID-19

The Flag Shop is a local business that has been at 15507 Stony Plain Road since 1990. We spoke to the owner of The Flag Shop, Phyllis Bright to see how the pandemic has affected the shop and to learn more about their Healthcare Heroes initiative! 

“We bought it in 1994, we were looking for a business and this one looked like an interesting one,” Bright tells us. 

The Flag Shop is part of a franchise that is headquartered in Vancouver, and we are told it has proven to be an interesting and fun business to run. Employees get to meet people from all around the world looking for flags. 

While the business does sell flags from locations all over the globe, they also do custom work. The shop does soft signage (printing on fabric), corporate flags, table cloths, street banners, as well as flag poles from 3″ to 100″, crests, windsocks, and more! What makes The Flag Shop so unique is that much of their product including Alberta and Canada flags and their custom work comes in as raw goods on rolls. The sewing department then cuts, sews and finishes the product on site! 

“This way we can ensure that things are done correctly and well,” states Bright, “We take a lot of pride in providing good quality products.” 

While the store does sell a limited number of products that are made offshore, most products are made in Canada. 

When the pandemic hit, The Flag Shop immediately stopped allowing customers in the shop, and on March 20, 2020 they temporarily closed their doors. The store’s sales were down 80%. 

“April, May and June are what we call the Christmas season in the flag industry, but not this year,” Bright tells us, “We are lucky in that our franchise has a great web order system, so that was helpful. 

Currently, The Flag Shop is closed to allowing people in the shop, but they are happy to do phone, email or web orders, and ship orders or arrange for curbside pickup. One of the reasons for these restrictions is that they have so much fabric (flags), that it is difficult to keep everything sanitized with customers in store. The store is currently looking at ways to accomodate people who come in, but since most of their business goes out by courrier, it is not a huge impact. 

The Flag Shop currently has a great initiative going that involves their Healthcare Heroes flag. The flag came about by the owner of The Flag Shop in Nova Scotia, Dr. Deb Hartlen, RN. While so many people have been keeping society going – truck drivers, grocery workers, first responders, The Flag Shops wanted to do something to honour the people working on the frontlines and are keeping people healthy. So, Dr. Hartlen designed the Healthcare Heroes flag. The blue in the flag represents code blue emergency as well as the scrubs often worn by staff, the stethoscope represents care and the heart and beat are representative of the compassion and competence of appreciation and gratitude of those receiving care. 25% of gross sales will be donated to the Edmonton Community Rapid Response Fund for up to $1,000. After that, 25% of gross sales will be donated to the Edmonton Food Bank.

To order a Healthcare Heroes flag or to contact The Flag Shop: 

Call: 780-484-5850

Email: edmonton@flagshop.com

Website:
https://edmonton.flagshop.com/location.php


New Tool Available for Commercial Rent Feedback

The Alberta government is listening to entrepreneurs and landlords to ensure they are doing everything they can to keep businesses open and Albertans working. 

Tenants and landlords can fill out a survey to help gauge any challenges that they may be experiencing while working together to develop a payment schedule, paying their rent, or meeting other financial obligations during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

You can access the survey here: 
https://www.alberta.ca/commercial-tenancy-support-feedback.aspx

Alberta has also joined other provinces, the territories and federal government in a program to help small businesses pay rent. The Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance (CECRA) program will help give certainty to small businesses and relieve some of the financial stress businesses are facing. The program began accepting applications on May 25 and is administered by the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation. 

You can apply for CECRA here: 
https://www.cmhc-schl.gc.ca/en/finance-and-investing/covid19-cecra-small-business


Business Resilience Service (BRS) 

Canada launched a new and free small business hotline called the Business Resilience Service (BRS) which will support the smallest and most vulnerable business owners. It will be available over the next 4 weeks and is run by advisors who can provide tailored financial advice to entrepreneurs who have an accountant with the goal to help them weather the pandemic and reopening. The hotline will run in partnership with the Canadian Chamber of Commerce. It is also for charities and non-profits. You can call 1=866-989-1080 and it is available 7 days a weeks from 8am to 8pm (ET). 

More info here:
https://www.canadianbusinessresiliencenetwork.ca/brs/


The Canadian Chamber of Commerce – Relief Fund

The Canadian Chamber of Commerce has partnered with Salesforce to launch the Canadian Business Resilience Network Small Business Relief Fund to offer $10,000 grants to 62 small Canadian businesses who have been operating for several years and are experiencing challenges.

The application will open June 1 and close June 12. Key eligibility criteria includes having between 2-50 employees, in business for at least 2 years as of March 1, 2020 and have an annual revenue of $150,000 – $5,000,000 CAD. 

More info here:
https://www.canadianbusinessresiliencenetwork.ca/smallbusinessrelieffund/


Federal Government Business Support Link 

To help Canadians and Canadian businesses navigate the number of COVID-19 programs available, the government has developed two tools, one for individuals and one for businesses. This tool allows users to quickly find programs they may qualify for by answering a few simple questions. 

Visit the business support tool here: 
https://innovation.ised-isde.canada.ca/s/?language=en

Visit the individual support tool here:
https://covid-benefits.alpha.canada.ca/en/start 


AGLC Update for Restaurants and Bars 

AGLC posted an update regarding opening your restaurant, bar, pub, café, and taproom. 

Information for this update can be found here:
https://aglc.ca/covid-19

If you have further questions: 

AGLC Inspections: inspections.mailbox@aglc.ca 

BizConnect – Complying with public health orders and relaunch stages – bizconnect@gov.ab.ca 

AHS – community.engagement@AHS.ca


Expand Your Patio & Sidewalk Space for Free!

The rules around temporary patios, sidewalk cafés, and outdoor retail expansions are relaxed, so you can create more space for your customers in alignment with Alberta Health Services (AHS) guidelines. 

Until the end of 2020, you have the option to expand your patio on your retail space by following a set of guidelines and signing a declaration form. 

If you are interested in taking advantage of this free expansion, it is important that you reach out the Stony Plain Road & Area BIA at stonyplainbrz@gmail.com to let us know that you are interested and what your would like to have done before you submit your application. 

For more information and to apply click here:
https://www.edmonton.ca/business_economy/temporary-outdoor-patios-sidewalk-cafes-and-retail-space.aspx?utm_source=virtualaddress&utm_campaign=temporarypatios


Expanded Eligibility For the Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA) 

The government has announced it was opening the criteria used by businesses in calculating their CEBA eligibility. To qualify criteria, applicants with payroll lower than $20,000 need: 

– A business operating account at a participating financial institution 

– A Canada Revenue Agency business number, and to have filed a 2018 or 2019 tax return

– Eligible non-deferrable expenses between $40,000 and $1.5 million. Eligible non-deferrable expenses could include costs such as rent, property taxes, utilities and insurance.

Expenses will be subject to verification and audit by the Government of Canada. 

More information here:
https://pm.gc.ca/en/news/news-releases/2020/05/19/prime-minister-announces-expansion-support-workers-and-small


Last Chance to Enter Our Social Media Contest! 

Head over to our social media accounts to enter our contest where you can win a  gift card to any Stony Plain Road & Area restaurant! Don’t forget to share with customers! 

The contest closes on Wednesday May 27, 2020 at 11:59 PM (MTD) and a winner will be chosen the following day.