Inglewood Sunfest returns to showcase small business

Guest walk down Ninth Ave. SW as the Inglewood Sunfest returned on Saturday, July 30, 2022. Craig Momney / Global News

The Inglewood Sunfest is back. For the first time since 2019, the annual event that showcases small business welcomed hundreds of guests as it returned on Saturday to the southwest community.

“Oh, it is an integral part,” said Inglewood Pizza owner Maria Sagumaran. “It brings people who may not otherwise come to the community down here to try all the different products.”

For more than 25 years, Inglewood Pizza has served piping hot pies to the community on Ninth Ave. However, for two of those years, the pandemic brought a time of uncertainty.

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“It was a little bit difficult for us,” Sagumaran said. “We were lucky that we didn’t have to shutdown because we ran a takeout delivery-only business, but the other businesses in this area are very happy to see people back.”

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For seven hours beginning at 11 a.m., Ninth Ave. was shutdown to cars from 11 St.  to 14 St., as more than 200 vendors showed off their goods and services.

Aside from vendors, the free family event features street performers, live music and plenty of activities for kids.

Event organizer, Jennifer Rempel said after the two years that many of these small businesses went through, it’s really key right now to highlight these businesses, especially “the small businesses that have managed to stay open during the last two years.”

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“And we hope that you can come down and discover a new one and maybe come back in a couple weeks and see another one,” she added.

The Inglewood Sunfest is now in its 27th year. Inglewood Pizza has never missed a year, while other businesses like Canela Vegan Bakery & Café are getting to experience what the Sunfest is all about for the first time.

“It’s kind of exciting,” said Andie Amaya with the bakery. “We get to be involved in the Inglewood community since we opened up just last year and it’s also really fun to interact with other businesses,” she added.

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Since COVID-19, the word community has been thrown around a lot especially at Sunfest. And even some of the guests were calling events like these the “cultural fabric of the city”.

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