Spread Some Local Love with Los Angeles Magazine

Help us show support for local small businesses we love

The pandemic has been devastating for small business. One study in 2020 projected that 60 percent of businesses in the United States that had to close at some point during the pandemic were never able to bounce back, at one point averaging 800 indie operations permanently shuttering each day. And Los Angeles has been a particularly tough environment, with high rents and costs of doing business and rapid displacement threatening many small operators even before the region became the epicenter of COVID’s deadliest wave.

We at Los Angeles know that these small businesses are essential to what makes this city unique and important, so we’re using this platform to highlight some local shops, restaurants, and other businesses that finds themselves struggling in these difficult times.

Check back each week for our Local Love spotlight, and be sure to share the love on Instagram. Know of a biz that could use a special shout out? Let us know here

DIESEL, A Bookstore

Indie bookshop DIESEL was founded in 1989, and stocks what they deem a “fascinating selection of titles.” At locations in Brentwood and San Diego, the store has hosted numerous author events, and the owners even set up a small imprint to publish books of their own. But then, the pandemic struck.

“We have tried to weather this storm, with creative reinvention, hard work, and perseverance, as we always have,” reads a GoFundMe launched by store owners Alison Reid and John Evans. “We’ve managed to keep our booksellers afloat financially and with the necessary health care. But at this point, our stores are foundering.”

DIESEL, A Bookstore, 225 26th St, Suite 33, Brentwood.

Donate: GoFundMe
Shop Online: dieselbookstore.com

The New Jalisco

One of DTLA’s oldest Latin gay bars needs the community’s help to survive. In the 1990s, when downtown had few gay bars, the New Jalisco owner helped turn into a lively safe space for the LGBTQI+ and Latin communities, which it’s remained to this day. Slide two: The bar has been closed due to the pandemic since March 2020, and as the bills have piled up, the bar has been put at risk of closing permanently.

The New Jalisco, 245 S. Main St., downtown.

Donate: GoFundMe

Catalina Jazz Club

For 34 years, Hollywood’s Catalina Jazz Club has showcased musical talents from the worlds of Broadway, soul, Latin jazz, and R&B—and stand-up comics too.

Closed since March, the venue is determined to serenade your souls again when this is all over. But for now, they’ve set up a “digital tip jar” as they fight to survive.

Catalina Jazz Club, 6725 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood.

Donate: GoFundMe

Counterpart Vegan

This Echo Park vegan spot has had to temporarily close due to the pandemic–but chef-owner Mimi Williams, who took over the operation in 2019, hopes to one day be able to open the doors back up, even if Counterpart has to move to a different location to do so.

“Counterpart Vegan’s story is not over,” a GoFundMe established to help the restaurant pull through these tough times says. “We hope you will support in any way you can, whether that is through donations, letters to the landlord or by sharing a link to [the crowdfunding page.”

Counterpart Vegan, 1559 Echo Park Ave, Echo Park.

Donate: GoFundMe


Hamburger Mary’s

Open since 2003 in WeHo, this franchise known for drag brunches and bingo (and, of course, hamburgers) has hit a rough patch as the COVID-19 crisis has continued. Indoor dining accounted for 90 percent of the operation’s revenue, and the shutter has been devastating.

Despite getting a small SBA loan earlier in the pandemic, the Santa Monica Boulevard staple is now scrambling to raise $200,000 to stay afloat. The funds will be use to make loan payments, pay utility bills, and cover other basic expenses.

Hamburger Mary’s West Hollywood, 8288 Santa Monica Boulevard, West Hollywood.

Donate: GoFundMe
Order takeout and delivery: hamburgermarys.com.

Delicias Bakery & Some

Family owned and operated, Delicias has been offering delicious conchas, tortas, and more in Highland Park since 1990. It boasts that it was the first panaderia in L.A. to start baking vegan pan dulce, and has been a neighborhood favorite for decades.

Now the bakery is struggling to stick around, dealing with both the pandemic and the rising costs of doing business in a rapidly-changing neighborhood.

“We have considered moving location, but Highland Park has always been home to Delicias, and we will continue to serve you for as long as we can,” writes Roxanne Sanchez on a GoFundMe page seeing help for her family business.

Delicias is hoping to raise $60,000 in crowdfunding to cover rent and immediate expenses to help them stay afloat. The bakery is also selling gift cards, and is open for walk-up orders Tuesday through Sunday, from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Delicias Bakery & Some, 5567 N. Figueroa St., Highland Park

Donate: GoFundMe


Stories Books & Cafe

This Echo Park bookshop and cafe has been a neighborhood landmark for more than a decade. The cozy shop has been a favorite place to browse for books, catch a live performance, or sit for hours on the back patio. But now, the shop is in trouble.

“Any business is like the proverbial shark, keep moving or drown,” the business owners write on their GoFundMe page. “To make it this far, we’ve taken on tons of new, interest-bearing debt, utilized the PPP loans, and done some fancy ass acrobatics that got us back to a sustainable place.”

Nonetheless, the small business continues to struggle, and a sluggish holiday shopping season has made things more dire. Now they’re seeking $150,000 (nearly $50,000 raised so far) in crowdfunding to pay employees and cover expenses.

Stories Books & Cafe, 1716 W. Sunset Blvd., Echo Park

Donate: GoFundMe
Shop Online: storiesla.com

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