Guest Column: GNNA Assists Local Businesses

524 Mexican Food mother-and-daughter team Dora Amalia Gomez and Luisa Fonseca. / Courtesy Photo

FOR THE NATOMAS BUZZ | @natomasbuzz

As part of our commitment to the community, the Gardenland Northgate Neighborhood Association — GNNA —collaborated with the Sacramento Hispanic Chamber of Commerce to identify 10 small businesses on Northgate Boulevard to obtain $1,000 grants, funded through the “Donate4Sacramento” COVID-19 Regional Response Fund.

Moreover, when businesses began to open their doors again, the Gardenland Northgate Neighborhood Association in collaboration with Sacramento City Economic Development Dept., physically distributed boxes of face masks to businesses on Northgate Boulevard and West El Camino Avenue.

Upon the city of Sacramento announcing their $15 million forgiveness loan program the Gardenland Northgate Neighborhood Association, along with Natomas Community Association board members, and Vice Mayor Jeff Harris’ office, spoke to many businesses on Northgate Boulevard and West El Camino Avenue to encourage and assist them in applying for these loans. Due to our collaborative efforts, 58 of our small businesses in the Gardenland and Northgate area received funding. The majority of the forgivable loans were for $5,000.

Two of the businesses along Northgate Boulevard shared what the loans meant for them. Even though the businesses are quite different, their needs are remarkably similar. 524 Mexican Food is a longtime neighborhood business located at 3380 Northgate Boulevard. When the pandemic hit, 524 had to shut down indoor dining. This was a great loss to both 524 and the community at-large. Curbside service continued and, eventually, outdoor dining was allowed in the parking lot. However, these could not make up for the time 524 was closed and the reliance on curbside service. The owner, Señora Dora Amalia Gomez, was so thankful to get a CARES Act forgivable loan from the city of Sacramento. It helped her pay her utility bills and employees. This one loan helped to keep her business open and gave her hope.

Nails The Luxe at 2868 Northgate Boulevard, in Suite 104, also received a CARES Act forgivable loan. Owner Araceli Lopez was also thankful for the loan. Along with doing nails, she sells various products and offers classes on nail design. She had to cancel classes due to the pandemic. She hopes to start classes again in January but, like so many businesses, she must wait and see whether Sacramento County will allow her to offer classes which require fairly close proximity. Like most businesses in the area, she used the funds to pay rent. Many of the businesses along Northgate Boulevard rent their spaces and are expected to pay full rent even though their businesses have had to close for periods of time.

The Gardenland Northgate Neighborhood Association recognizes there is much more to do in our community during this time and we are committed to continuing our advocacy and support to ensure that the Gardenland Northgate neighborhood in Natomas is a healthy, safe and prospering community.

Annette Emery serves as secretary on the Gardenland Northgate Neighborhood Association’s board of directors. For more information on GNNA go to or email us at [email protected].

Nails The Luxe owner Araceli Lopez. / Courtesy Photo


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