Local businesses thankful for more business with Cherry Blossom Festival

MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) — Local businesses are thankful for the increase in foot traffic resulting from the Cherry Blossom Festival.

Mary Kathryn Stewart works as director of public relations for Z Beans. She says they’ve seen more customers in their downtown and Mercer Village shops this week. A welcome change after the cancellation of the 2020’s festival.

“It’s really nice to see new people coming back through the doors; especially after Covid. This increase in traffic is really important for us for small businesses,” said Stewart.

They thought of the idea for a Cherry Blossom latte last year as a way to partner with United in Pink. They were excited to promote the partnership this year. A portion of the proceeds from each latter goes to United in Pink. Stewart says they’ve sold more than 300 of them.

“Because we’re a Macon business we really feel like we oughta give back to the community in some way and the Cherry Blossom Latte was a good way to have a theme for that,” says Stewart.

Gateway Café owner Kim McElhaney had the café windows decorated for last year’s festival. When it canceled, she decided to leave the decorations up year-round.

McElhaney and her staff wore pink t-shirts and homemade Cherry Blossom pins this week. Also, they have decided to sell a Cherry Blossom-themed cookie.

“We wanted to do something special just for Cherry Blossom. So we’re doing a sugar cookie with the pink icing on them and they’re quite popular,” said McElhaney.

McElhaney says the festival’s return helps local businesses get their names back out there.

“When you heard [Cherry Blossom] that it was closed your heart sank last year,” said McElhaney. “When you heard that it was on… I can’t imagine anyone not getting a little bit of excitement back at that sense of normalcy.”

There are still two more days to enjoy the Cherry Blossom Festival

  • For a list of events, you can check out the Cherry Blossom Festival website
  • Gateway Café is closed on weekends but you still have time to get a Cherry Blossom latte from Z Beans


Categories: Bibb County, Entertainment, Featured, Local News

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