- Sophie &Friends
For obvious reasons, my party planing business will never be the same. While we have begun to create person-to-person events again, many of my clients, particularly corporate ones, likely will never return to hosting large meetings or events.
Rockin'out, back in the day
Lately, there have been all sorts of articles about the lasting changes we are all experiencing, many for the better. For example, the San Francisco Bay Area, like many large, expensive urban centers, is experiencing a huge decrease in rents.
Let's be honest, San Francisco is one of, if not the, most expensive places to live in the US. A business like mine, where people pay someone to create a party for their children, can only exist in places where people have a large amount of disposable income. The problem was, and to some extent still is, that the folks who create these services can't afford to live anywhere near the folks for whom they provide the services. At the height of my business I employed hundreds of creative folks; face painters, balloon twisters, magicians, artisans, crafters, etc. They were able to, like me, do what they love and get paid to do so. It was a win-win for them, my company and our clients. But they couldn't afford to live anywhere near San Francisco, or if they did they had mutiple roommates, parents or someone else to help pay the rent.
One of my amazing teams
San Francisco is different now. People are leaving. Rents are dropping significantly and are now more in-line with other (expensive) areas of the US. But they are doing so because folks (a.k.a. our clients) are fleeing urban areas for the suburbs, or in some cases vacation-like places such as Hawaii and Lake Tahoe. I guess it makes sense. If you only work from home and can afford to move why not relocate to some beautiful, less crowded place.
After nearly 30 years living in this part of the US we are finally seeing it become more accessible to not only my creative colleagues, but also the folks who provide vital services like teachers and first responders. Sure, there is an element of this which is depressing - but at the same time it seems like we are also setting the stage for a Renaissance. The folks for whom we used to work are now beachfront somewhere else. But not all. Communities will rebuild around schools with great teachers, who may even be able to walk to work! And all of my creative friends will do what they always do - create, make art and brighten and change the lives of whomever is fortunate enough to be around them.
Welcome back friends.