Midtown Sacramento Businesses Feeling Economic Pinch

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(Sacramento, CA)
Monday, September 29, 2008

Ed Castro owns Ed’s Threads a vintage men’s clothing shop on 21st Street.

The small store is like a time capsule. Frank Sinatra and Marilyn Monroe photos are on the wall and rows of old suits from the 1940s, ‘50s and ‘60s are on the racks. Castro opened this store 26 years ago. He says lately, business has been down by a third.  

"This is probably the worst I’ve ever seen it as far as the economy’s concerned." 

Even his repeat customers haven’t been around.  

"They’re not coming in as often as they had in the past and everyone’s very cautious right now." 

That cautiousness is reflected in the downtown area’s retail sales. The Downtown Sacramento Partnership says sales have been stagnant over the past two years. 

Keesh Yadab – who owns Capital Cigarette and Cigar Store on J Street says he hopes that changes after November 4th. As for right now. 

"We’re barely making it. We’re really having a hard time right now. I hope eventually it picks up after the election."

Yadab says he’s using his own personal savings to pay the rent on his business. Things aren’t so grim for Tapa the World restaurant also on J Street. But co-owner Connie Levis admits…business could be better. 

"The first two weeks of September we compared our business to last September’s first two weeks and we were down considerably. And then last night we had a great night. So it’s unpredictable. We attribute the slowness to what’s going on in the financial markets." 

Levis says so far…she hasn’t had to lay off any of her employees. 

Back at Ed’s Threads…owner Ed Castro says he doesn’t know when things will turn around. 

"That’s the $64,000 question. I’ve been on this earth long enough to know you don’t give up. You keep plugging along." 

Castro says he thinks it’ll all work out in the end but for now it’s lean times for some Sacramento businesses.