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Business walk to survey Arden Arcade economy on Thursday

The region’s international award-winning Business Walk program arrives in Arden Arcade on Aug. 25, when volunteers will canvass local businesses to find out what’s happening with the economy and how conditions can be improved.

The Arden Arcade Business Walk is presented by the Arden Arcade Business Council, Fulton Avenue Association and Sacramento County, in partnership with the Sacramento Metro Chamber and supported by the region’s Metro Pulse partnership. The business walks have won acclaim from international economic developers and most recently as an outstanding chamber program for strengthening local economies.

“The County of Sacramento is dedicated to supporting the local businesses in the Arden Arcade area,” said Troy Givans, of the Sacramento County Office of Economic Development. “With more than 2,000 businesses that employ 40,000 people, this business walk is a great opportunity for us to hear the current challenges and needs within the business community and offer the appropriate resources.

The business walk program helps initiate contacts with businesses in the region and is the start of an ongoing conversation to help get businesses the resources they need to succeed. Volunteers who are business people or agency staff will visit storefronts and businesses, asking owners and managers three questions: How’s business, what do you like about doing business in Arden Arcade district and how can business be improved?

“Few ever ask the owner of a small business their opinion on anything,” Tim Cahill, of Charles C. Bell, Inc. “Yet small business is the backbone of our community and communities across this country. For the eighth annual business walk in Arden Arcade, we plan to go to the source—the small business owners in the Arden Arcade area—to get their opinion on the business environment and what we can do to make their business life a little bit easier.”

The business walks are part of a regional “best practices” strategy for business retention and expansion. So far in 2011, the Metro Chamber and its partners have conducted six business walks, contacting more than 1,270 businesses. In all, as many as a dozen are planned for this year.

Businesspeople who would like to volunteer to be a business walker can register online here. The business walk event, 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., includes a breakfast and orientation, three hours of business visits, a lunch and roundup session. This event is free. It will take place at Hampton Inn & Suites, 2230 Auburn Blvd., Sacramento.

“In 2010, the Sacramento region’s international award-winning Metro Pulse Program facilitated nearly 4,200 business visits—building public-private relationships with and making resource connections for local companies. At its core is the business walk model, which allows community leaders to meet with lots of companies in a short time; and, do so in a personal, one-on-one fashion,” said Matt Yancey, Metro Chamber director of business and economic development.

For more information, contact Kennedy Cullen at 916-319-4277 or kcullen@metrochamber.org.

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