Sonora Chamber Connect | Volume 7, Tuesday August 18, 2020
President's Message
As we navigate through these very challenging times, we continue to hear from our Chamber members that the number one thing we are all missing, is the ability to network in person. Being able to share our successes, our challenges, meet new members, enjoy our various events, and support one another over wine and a few laughs. Since we are all experts in Zoom now, it only seemed appropriate for us to create our own virtual Chamber mixer to find a way for us to be together, mask free!

Check out the virtual mixer video included in this issue to get an idea of what we have in store…

Our first virtual mixer will be September 22, 2020. Grab a glass of wine, and a snack and Zoom in! “SEE” you there!
Stay safe and be well,

Katie Dunn
Sonora Chamber President

Save The Date: Tuesday, September 22nd
Fittin' Pretty Bras Boutique will be our virtual host for this mixer.

Raffle items can be dropped off at Fittin' Pretty at 54 S. Washington St. during their working hour, Tuesday through Saturday 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Thank You to Our Gold Sponsors
In Memory of Connie Williams
It is with heavy hearts that we share the sad news that former Sonora Mayor and City Council Member Connie Williams has passed away.

The Sonora Chamber of Commerce sends our condolences to her husband, family, and friends.

Connie was a great champion for the Sonora Chamber of Commerce, the City of Sonora and Tuolumne County and will be dearly missed.
Calling All Californians: #ShopSafeShopLocal
Calling ALL Californians: #ShopSafeShopLocal digital media toolkit materials can assist businesses and proud partners in communicating the importance of following state and county industry guidance, shopping locally and shopping safely. Materials are free to download, share, and customize.

Innovation & Business Assistance
Cole Przybyla
Innovation & Business Assistance 
Tuolumne County

Data is knowledge as our region adapts to the Coronavirus Pandemic, thus the Department of Innovation and Business Assistance has begun an aggressive campaign to deliver timely, accessible data for local businesses.

Currently, we are finalizing a website, continuing morning webinars and sharing information via a Podcast.

To view the website, please visit If you visit the website, please take notes and share any feedback you may have for accessibility, feel and usability. Our goal is to make it a useful tool for you and your business.

Every Thursday morning at 9am, our department will hold a Zoom Webinar to discuss pertinent topics related to businesses in our county. The next two webinars will feature Mother Lode Job Training and California Office of Emergency Services.

If you cannot make live Thursday morning Zoom sessions, we release the webinar as a Podcast every Friday afternoon. You can find the podcast on Apple, Google, Spotify and more. Just search for Tuolumne talks Business.

As always, I am here for your business and to assistant in any way possible. If you have a question I can be reached at 209-288-4030 or by email at
Thank You to Our Bronze Sponsors
Update from
Visit Tuolumne County
Photo: Downtown Sonora by David Berry
Photo courtesy Dave Berry
The adaptive ways food and beverage businesses are recreating business models during this challenging time is incredible and Visit Tuolumne County wants to show off your transformation to our social media audiences by sharing photos of your new outdoor dining spaces, curbside take out services and/or meal or beverage kits.

It is our goal to send more customers your way when they see how easy and safe it is to dine out and support Tuolumne County businesses.

To participate, please send photos with a description to VTC Marketing Manager, Jen Lopez: We welcome creativity in expressing your business(es), but please be authentic in your offerings and address current protective protocols where appropriate (i.e. social distancing, servers wear masks, etc.).

By participating, you're giving Visit Tuolumne County permission to use your photos and the likeness(es) of those who are in the photos in VTC social media posts (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest) consumer emails, and blog articles.

Latest info from Valley Sierra SBDC
Howard White
Valley Sierra SBDC
Small Businesses watching SBA Coronavirus Disaster Loan availability probably know that the original Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) ended on August 8th (with about $126 Billion in unused funds). This program was intended to fund worker's earnings (including Sole Proprietors and Independent Contractors) and prevent business shut-downs and job losses. If used correctly, the PPP funds could be 100% forgiven, making this more like a grant than a loan. Congress is now negotiating a second and similar program called the Prioritized Paycheck Protection Program (P4). P4 should be available in the next few weeks, and will focus on smaller businesses (less than 100 or less than 300 employees - still being negotiated). It's likely that $25 billion will be set aside for businesses with fewer than 10 employees. From what is being discussed today, a business must be able to prove that their gross revenues in either the first or second quarters in 2020 were at least 35% or 50% less than their quarterly gross revenues in 2019 (also still being negotiated) - so not all businesses will qualify. Planned legislation would allow an eligible business that received the PPP to also receive P4. More information and resolution to questions about eligibility should be available in the next week.
Also, the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) is still accepting applications. This program consisted of an advance of $1,000 per employee up to 10 employees (thus, an advance up to $10,000), plus a 30-year loan at 3.75% (2.75% for non-profits) to replace gross revenues lost due to Coronavirus and ensuing business shut-downs. The advance was completely forgiven by the SBA so did not need to be paid back. Unfortunately, the advance funds have been exhausted, but the loan portion is still available until September 30 2020, or until the funds run out.
Please contact Howard at or the SBDC Center at (209) 422-6416 if you have questions, or would like more information about these two programs.

Enjoy Our Farmer's Markets
Twain Harte Mountain Air Market runs each Thursday through September 3rd

4:00 pm to 6:00 pm

Eproson Park

Peaceful Valley Farmers Market runs through the
summer and into the fall

4:00 pm to 8:00 pm

14888 Peaceful Valley Road
Sonora, California, 95370

The Sonora Farmer's Market will run through the end of October, 2020. 

7:30 AM to 11:30 AM

Cross-streets of
Theall and Stewart

The Tuolumne County SCORE Chapter is located with the Tuolumne County Chamber of Commerce offices at the Mother Lode Training Center, 197 Mono Way, Suite B, Sonora, CA 95370.  
We offer FREE consultation to Tuolumne and Calaveras individuals

Our Gmail address is:

What is SCORE? Where are your chapters located?
SCORE is the nation’s largest network of volunteer, expert business mentors, with approximately 10,000 volunteers in more than 250 chapters nationwide. Since SCORE was founded in 1964, this 501(c)(3) organization has helped more than 11 million current and aspiring entrepreneurs through mentoring, workshops and educational services. You can view SCORE locations by zip code and state at 

Who are SCORE volunteers?
The key qualification SCORE mentors bring is real-world business experience. They are working and retired business owners, executives and managers who have been through the same challenges and decisions that many entrepreneurs are facing today. In addition, SCORE mentors offer valuable expertise in specific industries. All SCORE volunteers receive specialized training offered by the association and are certified in mentoring methodology.

Tuolumne County SCORE volunteers are active business people (travel, consulting, digital marketing) and retired mentors 

Consider becoming a SCORE volunteer 
SCORE welcomes individuals who are considering devoting time to help local citizens who are considering starting a new business. We also aid existing companies with analytical tools to help them determine how to implement tactics and strategies to improve.

You can help in four different volunteer roles:
  • Mentor: offer confidential business mentoring services, either in person or online
  • Subject matter expert: provide focused knowledge based on your professional skills or industry
  • Workshop presenter: lead local workshops, seminars and events to help entrepreneurs meet their goals and achieve success
  • Chapter support role: share your skills in marketing, tech, finance, fundraising and more to help expand the outreach of SCORE

Learn more about SCORE Volunteers HERE. Or, send an email to us at TC SCORE

Thank You to Our Community Sponsors
Sonora Chamber of Commerce
P.O. Box 3084
Sonora, CA 95370