Capitola 'Sip & Stroll' event looks to raise funds for community devastated by Bay Area storms

Amanda del Castillo Image
Saturday, February 11, 2023
Capitola 'Sip & Stroll' looks to raise funds for storm recovery
Capitola's 'Sip & Stroll' event looks to raise funds for its community that was devastated by the Bay Area winter storms.

CAPITOLA, Calif. (KGO) -- Just over a month ago, we saw the incredible devastation in Capitola following one of the many storms that slammed into California in January. This weekend, the town's recovery effort will be on full display during the Capitola Sip & Stroll.

The event will be overflowing with added significance. Come Saturday, up to 500 people are expected for the sold-out affair. It'll mark the first big event since the brutal storms wrecked oceanside businesses.

"We're really hoping that the community's gonna show up and support, and get our village back to life," Capitola Wine Bar owner, Doug Conrad said. "Stroll around, spend some money in our local shops."

Conrad's wine bar is located a short distance from the devastation.

VIDEO: Storm damage: Here's before-and-after look at hardest-hit areas in Capitola, Santa Cruz

One of the hardest-hit areas from the devastating bomb cyclone was the Santa Cruz County coastline. Here's a before and after look at the region.

He and about 30 other business owners are participating in the Sip & Stroll event, with proceeds going to the Capitola Village Relief Fund.

"From the very beginning, the profits of the Sip & Stroll went to various nonprofits in the area, but this year, we realized the need is right here in the village," said Carin Hanna, owner of Craft Gallery and Craft Gallery Annex.

Money raised will support the employees of the few businesses that have yet to reopen.

"The goal is to raise money to help the employees of those businesses -- longterm employees -- be able to wait until those businesses open again and not have them go out and get another job," Hanna said. "Because you know how hard it is to get the right people -- hire a chef, good wait-people."

MORE: 'Capitola Village is open': Focus on recovery, returning to business in hardest-hit coastal areas

In Saturday's crowd, at least 30% are expected to be Santa Cruz County residents. Organizers say 70% of people are estimated to be coming from the Bay Area and beyond. These are welcome stats, following concerns of most thinking the village was closed.

Capitola Reef owner Devon Salter is hoping recent high profile visits focused on the devastation don't deter others.

"People outside of our county, they don't know what's going on," he said. "They think that they can't come here, and they can. We welcome them. We want them to come."

Salter explained the last Sip & Stroll event was held in November. He said the community hosts three Sip & Strolls a year.

MORE: President Biden visits Santa Cruz Co. towns damaged by storms

He and other business owners are reminding others that it's going to take a village to support Capitola Village.

Capitola Village & Wharf Business Improvement Area officials said the 450 tickets that were available for online purchase have been sold out. Another 50 tickets will be available for purchase, for those who plan show up for the event on Saturday. The event runs from noon to 5 p.m.

Next weekend brings live music to Capitola.

For more details about future events, visit the website here.

Details on Saturday's Capitola Sip & Stroll can be found here.

Now Streaming 24/7 Click Here

If you're on the ABC7 News app, click here to watch live