Virtual graduations causing financial losses for businesses

Chico State graduation weekend is one of the busiest weekends in downtown Chico.Action News Now reporter Kristian Lopez takes a look at how the coronavirus is impacting local businesses this year.

Posted: May 16, 2020 7:16 PM

CHICO, Calif.- Every other graduation weekend you’d see hundreds, if not,  thousands of people walking around downtown Chico, but not this year.

Local business owners say Chico State graduation weekend is one of their busiest weekends of the year, but because of the coronavirus many are facing financial losses and are left wondering what lies ahead. 

Denine Owen, owner of Denine's Cupcakes, in downtown Chico, says they usually see hundreds of people during graduation week. 
"We have a line out the door and we can hardly keep up with baking and frosting and decorating," said Owen.

However this year, she says sales are down around 90% compared to other graduation weekends.

"The scary part is that this weekend is so huge it carries us through the Summer months when we are slow, so we are not having that income coming in now. This is hitting us during our highest time, April, May and June, that’s what carries us through the whole entire year," Owen said. 

Jeff Plummer, owner of Upper Crust Bakery says they are also feeling the impacts. He says their sales are about half of what they usually do. 
Jeff Plummer says, "You do what you can, we are here for the customers and community we are doing everything we can."


Both businesses facing an uncertain future but pushing through the difficult time. 

"We are truly all in it together, every single one of us so I think downtown will come out stronger," said Owen. 

Despite the challenges they say they are staying optimistic about the future and are thankful for the support they are receiving from their customers. 

Denine’s Cupcakes is now offering Take-and-Bake kits. You can pre-order by calling them or contacting them through their social media pages. 

Upper Crust Bakery is offering takeout and curbside pick-up.

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