OLD TOWN, EUREKA, Calif. (KIEM)- As Covid-19 cases are plateauing in Humboldt County, many businesses in Eureka are making a comeback including in Old Town Eureka. Vacancies have gone down with new shops opening up as well the traditional ones that closed during the pandemic.
Business owners say holiday shopping this season has been drastically slower.
“Old Town is back and trying to run like before the pandemic. We’ve come a long way and we want the community to know we are here and want to serve,” said Ian Goddi, customer service associate at Flip Flop Shops in Old Town Eureka.
As well as businesses closing, homeless facilities did too which attracted a large homeless population to Old Town during the pandemic.
“Homelessness during the pandemic was off the chain down here. Homeless facilities were closed. That had people out here with no options and nowhere to go,” said Goddi.
They say Old Town Eureka has improved greatly in the last year and a half but cannot work at its full potential until people start coming back.
For example, many restaurants are not open for lunch because of the lack of foot traffic.
“Old Town has been cleaned up and revitalized. The improvements are good enough for people to come back and feel safe while they’re here. We just need to get the word out,” said Kyle Widimier, owner of Opera Alley Bistro and Madrone Tap House in Old Town Eureka.
Business owners are urging the Humboldt County community to “rediscover” Old Town and keep local stores thriving on the North Coast.