As Welcome Back Weeks Begin, Mayor Durkan and Partners Announce New Efforts to Support Small Businesses Across the Downtown Core
City to Support Nearly 500 Downtown Small Businesses Through Welcome Back Weeks Efforts, Approximately 80% are Women or Minority Owned
SEATTLE (July 12, 2021) – Mayor Jenny A. Durkan today announced new efforts to support small businesses across the downtown core as part of Welcome Back Weeks occurring from July 12 – 26. The City and downtown partners launched Welcome Back Weeks to bring workers, small businesses, and visitors back downtown. Large-scale events will take place in the Chinatown-International District, Pioneer Square, and Westlake, but many small business promotions span neighborhoods across downtown and will continue beyond the July Welcome Back Weeks. Through its partnerships with the Alliance for Pioneer Square, Chinatown-International District Business Improvement Area (CIDBIA), and the Intentionalist, the City is supporting nearly 500 downtown small businesses during Welcome Back Weeks, approximately 80 percent of which are Women or Minority Owned Businesses (WMBE).
“Our Welcome Back Weeks have activities and promotions to celebrate all the things we missed over the last 16 months: sporting events, concerts, and our favorite restaurants and small businesses. We’re hosting live music events with local Seattle artists, giving away tickets to our incredible championship teams, and presenting a true celebration of local small businesses throughout our downtown core,” said Mayor Durkan. “Welcome Back Weeks are about bringing together everything that makes downtown Seattle so special – with a focus on our small businesses and arts and cultural organizations. Come downtown and help us welcome back our small businesses, our artists, and our entire community after a long time away.”
“People choose Seattle as their home because of our legendary outdoor beauty, our unparalleled sense of community, and the events, small businesses, artists, spaces, and people that make this city such a wonderful place to live,” said Councilmember Lewis (District 7, Pioneer Square to Magnolia). “Seattleites are bursting with energy to celebrate their city after 16 months of sacrifice, and these Welcome Back Weeks are great opportunities to partake in all the things that make Seattle such a special place.”
“Our small businesses and arts and cultural organizations were among the first to feel the weight of the economic downturn at the start of the pandemic,” said Downtown Seattle Association President & CEO Jon Scholes. “Many businesses had to close permanently, but more than 75% of the street-level businesses that were open before the pandemic have reopened in downtown and they need our support and patronage to pull through during recovery. Welcome Back Weeks will elevate much of what makes downtown so great and provide ways to come together for experiences you can’t get anywhere else.”
As part of Welcome Back Weeks, the City has partnered with Intentionalist to launch a series of small business promotions across Belltown, the Chinatown-International District, the Downtown core, and Pioneer Square.
Receipt and Receive
A program to offer $10 off at participating downtown small businesses
The Intentionalist is launching Receipt and Receive, wherein a customer uploads a receipt from a purchase made any small business in Belltown, Downtown, Pioneer Square, and the Chinatown-International District between July 12 and 25, and receives a $10 Intentionalist coupon code that they can be used to make purchases from participating small businesses through the end of the month. Participating downtown small businesses include Taqueria Cantina (downtown location), Piroshki on 3rd, Fulcrum Coffee, Sassafras, Jerk Shack, Bangrak Market, Hood Famous Cafe + Bar, and Jade Garden. In addition, Intentionalist will be randomly selecting daily winners to receive a $100 gift certificate from local businesses. A full list of participating small businesses can be found here.
Welcome Back Coupons
Shop at participating small businesses neighborhoods throughout Seattle and receive $10 coupons throughout the month
Folks who shop at Hood Famous Café + Bar and Jade Garden in the Chinatown-International District, as well as Fulcrum Cafe and Taqueria Cantina in Downtown from July 12 – 16 will receive a $10 Welcome Back coupon to spend in-person at participating Chinatown International District small businesses. Participating businesses include KOBO, Chu Minh Tofu, Alice’s Floral Design, Fort St. George, Sairen, and New An Dong. Welcome Back coupons can be used from July 17 – 31. Learn more about Welcome Back coupons here.
$500 tab on the Intentionalist throughout Welcome Back Weeks
The City and Intentionalist are hosting $500 tabs at downtown small businesses throughout Welcome Back Weeks. The first tab will be hosted at Doner Box to kick-off Welcome Back Weeks on July 12. Other tabs will be hosted at small businesses including Mi La Cay and Itsumono on July 17 and Bubble Tea Fresh Fruit Juice on July 18 for the Hing Hay Park Welcome Back events and at Bangrak Market on July 25. All information regarding tabs additional tabs will be shared via Intentionalist’s Instagram account.
Gift Like It Matters
Discounted gift certificates for downtown small businesses for those unable to attend events in-person
Folks unable to attend the in-person Welcome Back Week events in the Chinatown-International District, Pioneer Square, and Westlake, can support participating small businesses by purchasing gift certificates at a twenty percent discount. Participating businesses include Seattle Best Tea, Phnom Penh Noodle House, and Cone & Steiner. A full list of participating businesses can be found here.
“Since the pandemic started, people have understandably started working from home. Unfortunately, our area depends heavily on the daily office workers and tourism isn't as prominent. As a result, we are just one of the very few restaurants that remain (partially) open in our now empty streets. With closed borders and limited traveling, local support is of the utmost importance to help small businesses survive. Thanks to efforts from causes like the Intentionalist and the Welcome Back Weeks, we have a chance to try to revive what was once a thriving neighborhood,” said Alyssa Anderson, owner of Piroshki on 3rd.
“We are excited to partner with the City to provide a variety of fun ways to explore and Spend Like It Matters as part of Welcome Back Weeks,” said Intentionalist CEO, Laura Clise. “Enjoy treats on us from restaurants and cafes throughout Belltown, Downtown, and Chinatown-International District, get rewarded when you upload your small business receipts, spend your Welcome Back coupons and get to know neighborhood gems, and purchase gift certificates from diverse local businesses you love. Welcome Back Weeks is a wonderful opportunity to spotlight and celebrate the local businesses at the heart of our communities!”
As part of the City’s downtown recovery effort, the Alliance for Pioneer Square is re-launching its Passport to Pioneer Square program, which began in 2020 and is designed to support small businesses and increase visitor traffic to the neighborhood. Passport to Pioneer Square will begin Saturday, July 24, in alignment with the Welcome Back Week event in Pioneer Square.
Those participating in the Passport to Pioneer Square will be tasked with a photo contest “passport challenges” to be entered to win unique "passport prizes" such as Sounders FC tickets. Program participants pick up or print out a Passport to Pioneer Square and complete the challenges listed on the Pioneer Square website to be entered to win prizes from neighborhood businesses. The July challenge is to attend the Welcome Back Week event in Pioneer Square on Saturday, July 24, from 10:30 a.m. – 3 p.m., follow Pioneer Square on social media, and/or share a photo of the Welcome Back Week event. More information and future challenges are available on the Alliance's website.
"We are so excited to see shoppers and diners return to our streets as part of Welcome Back Weeks and beyond! Small businesses in Pioneer Square are really proud of hanging in there - we've always had to be creative problem solvers - and we are eager to show off what we've created for our customers during the past year. Intrigue Chocolate has been completely restructured and reimagined, condensing our three locations into one. Production happening right in our shop means that we no longer provide beverage service or samples, but our take-home experiences are more dynamic than ever,” said Aaron Barthel, Founder, Intrigue Chocolates.
In addition, the CIDBIA is hosting a series of programs to support local CID small businesses during Welcome Back Weeks, including C-ID Bingo during the July 17 and 18 Welcome Back Week events in Hing Hay Park. Participants should follow @iheartID on Instagram and Facebook for the C-ID Bingo card, make bingo, and hashtag #CIDBingo to enter to potentially win a $100 gift card to a neighborhood business. The CIDBIA is offering promotions throughout July, rounding out the month with the CID Food Walk on July 31st. A full list of programs is available on their website and on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter at @iheartID.
The City’s three large-scale Welcome Back Week events will also feature vaccine pop-up clinics, and all those vaccinated on-site will receive a free single-day pass to the Day In • Day Out music festival taking place at Seattle Center this Labor Day weekend. More information on the Welcome Back Week events and vaccine pop-ups is available at www.seattle.gov/covidrecovery.