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2019 “Calling All Dreamers” Winners Celebrate Official Grand Opening in Downtown Sacramento

nash and proper
Photo courtesy of Downtown Sacramento Partnership

The winners of the 2019 Calling All Dreamers competition presented by the Downtown Sacramento Foundation (DSF) are celebrating the official grand opening of Nash & Proper in downtown Sacramento.

After two years of serving from a mobile food truck – and building a loyal following one delicious chicken sandwich at a time – the two Nash & Proper owners Cecil Rhodes and Jake Bombard “softly opened” their first brick-and-mortar location in Downtown on September 16, 2020 (known as “916 Day”), with support from the Calling All Dreamers program. With safety measures in place and outdoor seating available, the hard-working owners and a dedicated crew are looking forward to welcoming downtown workers and visitors who have an appetite for their famous hot and spicy menu items.

“More than ever, we need our small businesses, start-ups and entrepreneurs, such as Cecil Rhodes and Jake Bombard of Nash & Proper, as we look to reopening and recovery,” said Erika Bjork, Downtown Sacramento Foundation Board Chair. “We have seen with Calling All Dreamers the important role this program has played, not just in helping our Downtown Sacramento small businesses open their doors, but also in becoming resilient and eventually growing. It is these businesses, and their founders, that drive our downtown culture, vitality, jobs and ultimately create the sense of place that we are all looking forward to returning to in the near future.” 

Known for serving up the best Nashville-style fried chicken available in Sacramento, the most popular item on the Nash & Proper menu is “The Sammich” (Crispy Fried Boneless Chicken Thigh, Slaw, Fuego hot sauce and pickles on a butter bun).  And, as a Grand Opening special, they will preview their newest menu item – a mouth-watering Chicken and Waffles dish that will be available all day on Saturdays and Sundays only (with a house made, secret recipe habanero syrup for those hungry for an extra spicy kick).

“People often ask why we decided to open a brick-and-mortar restaurant in the middle of a pandemic,” said Cecil Rhodes, Co-Owner of Nash & Proper. “With so much uncertainty in play at the time and the centrally located space sitting empty, we opened out of necessity and figured we didn’t have much to lose. As the new owners on the block, we really saw it as an opportunity to bring some life back to K Street with the generous support and guidance from the Calling All Dreamers program.”

With on-site dining available and online ordering for pick-up or delivery, Nash & Proper’s downtown eatery is located at 1023 K Street and is open seven days a week, times vary. More information is available at nashandproper.com or via social @nashandproper.

To keep employees and customers healthy and safe, Nash and Proper has taken the pledge to “Keep COVID In Check” and operating with enhanced safety measures in place.  

Since 2013, Calling All Dreamers has continued to drive economic growth in the heart of the Sacramento region. While the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted some of the past winners of the program, Calling All Dreamers has helped to launch more than two dozen local businesses. This year, the Calling All Dreamers program pivoted plans from adding a new class of applicants to support past winners to help them stay in operation, with support from Kaiser Permanente and SMUD.   

Each year, Calling All Dreamers contestants compete for a coveted business start-up package that is designed to provide the winner with essential resources and helpful tools needed to successfully launch a downtown storefront. In addition, DSF helps the winning entrepreneur navigate a variety of challenges faced by many business owners during their first year in business.

Economic development and small business growth are top priorities for the Downtown Sacramento Partnership, a Property Based Improvement District (PBID) focused on downtown Sacramento and sister organization to the DSF. The Shark Tank-style competition takes qualified applicants through a business development program that calls for extensive business planning, market research, proof of financial sustainability, and more.

For more information, visit CallingAllDreamers.org.

2019 “Calling All Dreamers” Winners Celebrate Official Grand Opening in Downtown Sacramento via @sacramentopress

About the author

Traci Rockefeller Cusack

Traci Rockefeller Cusack

Traci Rockefeller Cusack has 25+ years of media and public relations experience.  Her work experience includes News10 (ABC) as Promotion Manager from 1989-1998 (where she developed and launched “Coats for Kids’ Sake,” a winter coat drive that lasted 20+ years plus coordinated Oprah Winfrey’s first ever visit to Sacramento) and Fleishman-Hillard as Vice President from 1998-2005 (where she led the wildly successful statewide “California Grown” program and also produced the five-minute video that played on the Jumbotron on Opening Day at Pac Bell Park). In 2007, she launched T-Rock Communications and currently handles a wide range of marketing activities for a number of top-notch organizations.

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