By Shira Evergreen, documentary filmmaker and commercial drone pilot (upliftedithaca.com)
On March 4th, Alternatives Federal Credit Union’s Business CENTS program is hosting a day-long virtual conference for small businesses, and I was hired to make a series of ten short videos about local businesses, including several in the food and hospitality sector such as Mama Said Hand Pies. The videos will be streamed during the conference and will be available for public viewing on social media soon after the conference.
Making this series during a pandemic has been interesting because all of the businesses have had to respond and adapt to the constraints while finding ways to stay connected to their customers. Mama Said Hand Pies is no exception, and they have done an outstanding job integrating safety protocols and shifting their storefront to a pick-up window for carry-out orders.
In this video, co-owner Hiroko Takashima shares her approach to cooking and shares why she and her husband Gabe Flores decided to bring hand pies to Ithaca. Spoiler alert: people like food wrapped in dough!
Hiroko also explains how Mama Said Hand Pies has benefitted from assistance from Alternatives Federal Credit Union and from the Civil Advocacy Project, which provided them with low-cost legal counseling. After selling their pies at various festivals and farmer’s markets for a few years, they were ready to move into their space in Press Bay Alley in the heart of downtown Ithaca, and the accessible legal guidance provided by Civil Advocacy Project was essential in their process of signing a commercial lease for the first time.
The Recharge & Connect Small Business Conference is on March 4th, 9am-5:30pm and costs $75 to attend (scholarships are available). The conference organizers promise “an engaging day of networking, discussion, and presentations to help your small business soar.” Featuring Keynote Speaker Heather Saffer, owner of Dollop Gourmet, and winner of the Food Network’s Cupcake Wars and ABC’s SharkTank, the conference will include opportunities to connect and learn, breaks for stretching and relaxation, and “partner accountability” so you can commit to a goal designed specifically for you to help you develop your business.
Learn about the full line-up of speakers and register at https://www.eventbrite.com/e/recharge-connect-small-business-conference-tickets-126471185721
Shira Evergreen is a documentary filmmaker and commercial drone pilot specializing in visual storytelling for nonprofits, arts organizations, and small businesses. You can learn more about her work at www.upliftedithaca.com.
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