Oakland General Strike: Support local, independent businesses

2 Nov

Before heading to downtown for the general strike, I wanted to put up this quick blog post urging folks to support the small businesses downtown – both those that are closed today and those that are open. Some businesses downtown have been hurting for the past couple of weeks, either because of the occupation or because of the heavy police presence in Frank Ogawa Plaza last week. Sadly, a few businesses have had their windows broken by protesters.

Some are urging folks to buy nothing today. I don’t support that message. Instead, I urge you to buy locally and to spend money at the downtown businesses that have been most effected by Occupy Oakland and the police response.

Two downtown cafes got creative today and deserve a special shout out. Farley’s East on Grand between Broadway and Webster is serving $.99 coffee today for the 99%.

Awaken Cafe on Broadway south of 15th sent out the following message to its email list last night:

We’ve gotten a lot of support and encouragement on Facebook & Twitter to stay open for the General Strike, and after some debate, we’ve chosen to open for business and to donate 20% of our sales to Ella Baker Center for Human Rights and Alameda County Community Food Bank. Additionally, our staff has volunteered to donate their wages for the day as well.

But we’re not sure how everyone will receive us being open in the middle of downtown Oakland or what kind of crowd to expect downtown. Located at the beating heart of our city with the mission to “Bring People Together & Launch Movements,” we want to be an active participant in this conversation and movement. We’ll be open in the morning as a calm place to meet, plan, share, participate, and get something warm to drink. If you’re going to be downtown and you support us remaining open, stop by and say hi from 7:30 am to Noon.

So if you need a caffeine boost today, please visit Awaken or Farley’s.

Jason Overman from Councilmember at-large Rebecca Kaplan’s office sent out the following list of Frank Ogawa Plaza and surrounding businesses to Kaplan’s email list last night, asking folks to support these businesses. I’ve been focusing on supporting these businesses for the past couple weeks and I hope you’ll join me in doing so:

Plaza Cafe
Buffet & made-to-order food for breakfast, lunch or just the snack you need to get through the day!
6:00 am – 4:30 pm (M-F)
300 Frank H. Ogawa Plaza, Suite 150
(510) 465-5001

Featuring African jewelry, crafts, bags, art and other great gift items!
10:00 am – 5:00 pm (M-F)
120 Frank H. Ogawa Plaza
(510) 444-0149

Rising Loafer
Delicious for breakfast, salads, sandwiches, crepes and other homemade treats!
7:30 am – 3:00 pm (M-F)
130 Frank H. Ogawa Plaza
(510) 836-8712

Oakland-grown t-shirts and other stylish clothing items without needing to step foot into a shopping mall!
Opens at 11:00 am / Closes at 7:00 pm (Th), 6:00 pm (F), 5:00 pm (Sa)
1444 Broadway
(510) 251-9500

Authentic, tasty Vietnamese food right in Frank Ogawa Plaza!
10:00 am – 9:00 pm (M-F)
326 Frank H. Ogawa Plaza
(510) 465-4545

The Rotisserie Deli
Serving up a fresh salad bar, an Asian buffet and, of course, hot rotisserie chicken!
7:00 am – 4:00 pm (M-F)
200 Frank H. Ogawa Plaza
(510) 268-1700

Caffe Teatro
Tucked inside the Rotunda Building, a great place to get your morning (or afternoon) cup of coffee!
6:00 am – 4:00 pm (M-F)
300 Frank H. Ogawa Plaza, Suite 130
(510) 267-8970

Juice Joint
From breakfast burritos to fresh-made sandwiches and smoothies, Juice Joint is convenient and provides a great variety!
7:00 am – 3:00 pm (M-F)
332 Frank H. Ogawa Plaza
(510) 834-4800

Awaken Cafe
One of the hottest Bay Area trends, Awaken Cafe is a pop-up coffee cart just off the plaza!
7:30 am – 12:00 pm
1429 Broadway
(510) 847-1857

I’m headed to downtown so probably won’t be able to respond much to comments today, but I’ll do my best to approve comments on my phone (if you’ve never commented here before, your comments are moderated). For updates on the general strike throughout the day, follow me on Twitter – @OaklandBecks.

3 Responses to “Oakland General Strike: Support local, independent businesses”

  1. Redrah November 2, 2011 at 11:49 am #

    And for the love of god, pay with cash if you can! Particularly at coffee shops, I want to scream when I see someone paying with a credit card. If you’re buying coffee at a small coffee shop with a credit card, that shop lost money on that transaction.

  2. victoriamartins November 7, 2011 at 9:34 am #

    I love your thoughts on supporting local businesses as a peaceful way to protest corporate! And I l just love your blog generally. Such an excellent representation of Oakland for the nation and a resource for locals.

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