Accounts – David Thompson Things http://davidthompsonthings.com/ Tue, 28 Dec 2021 16:13:42 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.8 https://davidthompsonthings.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/default.png Accounts – David Thompson Things http://davidthompsonthings.com/ 32 32 A New Illinois Law Caps Payday Lenders — But What Happens If They Leave The State? https://davidthompsonthings.com/bad-credit-mortgages/ https://davidthompsonthings.com/bad-credit-mortgages/#respond Mon, 24 May 2021 11:24:18 +0000 https://davidthompsonthings.com/?p=787 When Cobi was 23 years old, he had a steady job, but it didn’t pay enough for him to save up and move out of his mom’s place on Chicago’s West Side. How to get the money? An internet payday advance is a quick solution to the problem of a lack of cash for expenses. He planned […]]]>

When Cobi was 23 years old, he had a steady job, but it didn’t pay enough for him to save up and move out of his mom’s place on Chicago’s West Side.

How to get the money? An internet payday advance is a quick solution to the problem of a lack of cash for expenses.

He planned on supplementing his income with an additional job. To do so, he needed to buy a laptop and camera, but he didn’t have the money for those purchases.

When money was tight at home, his mom would get money at payday loan stores.

“She didn’t do them frequently, but I remember several times where she did,” said Cobi. “So you know I said, ‘OK… if she did them … why not?’ ”

We’re only using Cobi’s first name because he doesn’t want his current employer to know about his financial history.

Looking back, he said it wasn’t difficult for him to find a payday lender because there were a lot in his neighborhood. And it was a quick process: The worker that helped him didn’t ask him a lot of questions.

Cobi went in requesting $200 dollars, and he was offered $450. He took it knowing he would have to pay it back when his next pay check came in.

But then his mom got sick and was in the hospital.

When payday rolled around, he was surprised by the $600 charge in his bank account. He didn’t have the money, and his bank account went in the negative. His bank then charged him overdraft fees.

He didn’t know what to do.

Cobi had to ask himself, “Do I take care of my family or pay the bank back?”

Cobi said he didn’t have the money. The bank ended up closing his account because of lack of payment.

Payday loans are supposed to be small, short-term loans. They are available for people who need fast cash and don’t have access to another option, like a traditional bank or credit union. But these loans are also known to come with high interest rates, up to 400% in some cases.

“I think the process went a little too fast to the point where I don’t remember them putting an emphasis on the interest and how much it was going to be,” said Cobi.

Stories like Cobi’s pushed Illinois lawmakers to react. The state is now one of 18 that caps payday loan interest rates and fees after the Illinois Predatory Lending Prevention Act was signed into law by Governor JB Pritzker last month.

Illinois State Senator Jacqueline Collins represents parts of Chicago’s South Side and the south suburbs. She co-sponsored the measure and called these types of high-interest loans “predatory.”

“The legislation goes to cap payday loans at 36%, installment payday loans at 36% and auto title loans at 36%,” said Collins. “Even that I feel is predatory, but that’s the best we can do at this point.”

Collins says it’s not an accident these types of businesses set up shop in communities of color.

“It’s really a result of redlining and segregation, because what happened was that segregation really created the opportunities for economic exploitation,” said Collins. “We know that these communities of color were targeted because they didn’t have access to a traditional bank loan.”

Not everyone agrees that capping lenders is the right move.

Rickie Keys with Renewal Financial lobbied against the measure. He agreed that payday loans are predatory, but said the fallout of the new law could unintentionally hurt communities of color because there’s nothing to take their place.

“Banks are not going to step in to offer these services. Credit unions will not step in to offer these services. I believe that the installment lenders will try to make a go of it but eventually I believe they will go away,” said Keys. “The only options that will be available to consumers … will be bad options.”

Keys is worried the demand for these types of loans will remain, but the supply will dry up on the city’s South and West sides.

Andy Posner, Founder and CEO of the non-profit lender Capital Good Fund, believes lenders like his and other community lenders want to provide services, but they haven’t been able to compete.

“All these payday branches and others are in their community, they get flyers and advertisements,” said Posner. “So if you see the worst actors pull out of the space, it makes it a lot easier for the good players to acquire customers cost effectively.”

Posner said the new law levels the playing field and gives people alternatives.

“This is going to be really good, particularly in the middle of the pandemic, for families to be able to access credit without putting themselves into a debt cycle,” said Posner. “So now people are going to be looking for alternatives, and so it’ll be easier for us to find them because it won’t just be us looking for the customer.”

Cobi wishes he’d known about other options because taking out that loan affected every aspect of his life.

He’s still rebuilding his finances five years later.

“I had to find a landlord that took cash. I couldn’t live where I wanted to live. It seemed very small at the time but it started a chain reaction. I’m OK now, but it just took me a while to recuperate.”

Araceli Gómez-Aldana is a host and reporter at WBEZ. Follow her @Araceli1010.

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Anderson Middle School students on distance learning Monday after fire https://davidthompsonthings.com/anderson-middle-school-students-on-distance-learning-monday-after-fire/ https://davidthompsonthings.com/anderson-middle-school-students-on-distance-learning-monday-after-fire/#respond Mon, 24 May 2021 08:17:58 +0000 https://davidthompsonthings.com/?p=530 Staff reports  |  Redding Record Searchlight Anderson Middle School students will remain on distance-learning on Monday after a fire caused power outages on campus, school officials said.  The electrical fire started in the school’s solar connection, Cascade Union Elementary School District spokesperson Carolyn Phelps said in an announcement on Friday afternoon. The fire caused power outages throughout the […]]]>

Anderson Middle School students will remain on distance-learning on Monday after a fire caused power outages on campus, school officials said. 

The electrical fire started in the school’s solar connection, Cascade Union Elementary School District spokesperson Carolyn Phelps said in an announcement on Friday afternoon.

The fire caused power outages throughout the school, according to a notice posted on AMS’ Facebook page.

District staff will update parents regarding when students can return to in-person learning, Phelps said. 

“A notification will be sent out Monday evening about the status of Tuesday,” the Facebook post said.

For more information, go to https://bit.ly/3gSRXnS.

– Jessica Skropanic

Redding Chamber of Commerce opposes recall effort of Shasta County supervisors

Wednesday, April 28

The Redding Chamber Commerce opposes the effort to recall Shasta County Supervisors Joe Chimenti, Leonard Moty and Mary Rickert, the business advocacy group announced Tuesday evening.

The chamber’s board of directors unanimously voted to oppose the recall following a recommendation from its political action committee.

In coming out against the recall, the chamber said collective decisions by the Shasta County Board of Supervisors to educate rather than enforce state COVID-19 guidelines has helped the local economy, which is reflected in the county’s unemployment rate trending lower than the rest of California. Shasta County’s unemployment rate in March was 7.5% compared with 8.2% in California.

The chamber also was critical of the estimated $200,000 to $400,000 cost for a special election to recall the supervisors, calling it unwise and not an effective use of public funds.

“Now is the time of accentuate the positive momentum in our community and focus on fostering a strong business climate, healthy local government, and vibrant community development,” the chamber said in a news release.

Meanwhile, the recall effort is on hold after Cathy Darling Allen, the county’s registrar of voters, said proponents of the recall did not include their signatures in the notices of intention published in the Record Searchlight newspaper. The decision was announced Monday.

Proponents now must start over if they want to proceed with the recall, Darling Allen said.

— David Benda

Coroner IDs man killed in crash in south Redding last week

Tuesday, April 27

The man killed last week when he was thrown from his motorcycle in a crash in south Redding was identified as Sammy Ray Hartzog, 59, of Millville, the Shasta County Coroner’s office said Tuesday.

The crash between the motorcycle and sedan happened last Wednesday afternoon near Railroad Avenue and Eugenia Avenue.

Investigators said Hartzog was on the motorcycle going south on Railroad Avenue at an unknown rate of speed, approaching the intersection of Eugenia Avenue.

The driver of a 2016 Toyota Avalon was getting ready to leave the the Owens Pharmacy parking lot on Eugenia when for unknown reasons, Hartzog lost control and was thrown from the bike and hit the sedan, investigators said.

Related: One killed in collision between motorcycle and sedan, Redding police say

More: Cal Fire: Arson suspected after 7 late-night fires burn along Highway 299 in Burney

Drugs and alcohol do not appear to be a factor in the collision, investigators said. Hartzog was wearing a helmet and the people in the Toyota were wearing seatbelts, the Redding Police Department posted on Facebook.

— David Benda

Deputies help round up loose ram; owner cited 

Saturday, April 24

It’s not every day a Shasta County sheriff’s deputy gets called to round up a loose ram.

That’s what happened the morning of April 16 when Shasta Lake Animal Control received a report of a loose goat near Deer Creek Road and Fort Peck Street, the sheriff’s office said.

But the animal turned out to be a full-grown ram with prominent horns.

Animal control wasn’t able to capture the wandering ram so deputies from the Shasta Lake station were contacted to help out.

“Along with Shasta Lake Public Works, they were able to corral him in to a nearby backyard located in the 4000 block of Fort Peck Street,” the sheriff’s office said.

The ram was returned to his residence on Red Bluff Street where the owner was cited, deputies said.

“Great job to everyone who helped get the ram safely back to his residence,” the sheriff’s office said.

— Mike Chapman

Whiskeytown calls for volunteers for Saturday cleanup 

Friday, April 23

Staff at Whiskeytown National Recreation Area in Redding is looking for volunteers to help clean trash and debris in the park.

The “Whiskeytown the Beautiful Volunteer Cleanup” event kicks off Saturday morning.

Volunteers can register to attend and pick up litter. Those with a small boat might be asked to bring it.

Registration to join the cleanup effort is open through Friday afternoon. To register, email Scott_Einberger@nps.gov.  

— Jessica Skropanic

Officials looking for car seen leaving area during fire

Saturday, April 17

Firefighters extinguished three vegetation fires that broke out Thursday and Friday in Redding.

The first was a spot fire reported at 10:03 a.m. Thursday behind Enterprise Park on Victor Avenue, and the Redding Fire Department is asking for the public’s help in identifying a light blue sedan that was seen leaving the area during the fire. The vehicle is described as a four-door, late 1990s or early 2000s light blue Ford Taurus.

No one was injured in the incident, fire officials said in a statement.

The cause of that fire is under investigation. Anyone with information on who owns the car or where the car is, can contact the fire department at 530-225-4141.

The other two fires happened on Friday at homeless encampments. No one was injured in either of the fires. One was reported at 6:51 a.m. on the 1500 block of Riverside Drive and the other one was reported at 12:08 p.m. on the 8000 block of Eastside Road.

Fire crews contained the fire on Riverside Drive within 10 minutes and stayed behind for an hour to mop up. The fire on Eastside Road burned about a quarter of an acre of grass and brush. Firefighters knocked it down in about 20 minutes and took about 90 minutes to clean up.

— Jenny Espino

Shasta College to hold in-person graduation 

Friday, April 16

Shasta College will hold an in-person commencement ceremony on May 21 at its Memorial Stadium while following social distancing guidelines and safety requirements, according to campus officials.

Anyone attending the ceremony will have to wear a mask while on district property and must have a ticket to enter campus. The college will limit the number of staff and faculty at the ceremony, and graduates will be limited to inviting two guests to attend. The college will livestream the event for those who are unable to attend in-person, according to a press release.  

“With everything these students have endured and the resiliency they have shown, I feel that this year’s ceremony has special significance for everyone involved. I look forward to recognizing our graduate’s accomplishments and celebrating their achievements as they walk across the stage to receive their diploma,” President Joe Wyse said in the statement.

The college is still confirming details regarding the ceremony and anticipates that some details will be subject to change as the planning process progresses.

— Nada Atieh

Chico State to require dorm residents, athletes to be vaccinated

Thursday, April 15

Chico State University will require COVID-19 vaccines for students living on campus and student athletes starting this fall, the school announced Thursday.

The university wants to house about 1,800 students for the 2021-22 academic year, Chico State Emergency Operations Center Director Mike Guzzi said in a news release.

“Our plan is to open our residence halls at about 80% of full capacity, with two students in most rooms, in the fall. When athletics returns, our student-athletes will spend significant time together in shared facilities,” he said. “It’s critical that these two segments of the student population are vaccinated so we can safely plan for a full, lively Chico State in the fall 2021.”

Chico State officials said they will at a later date give students additional information about the application process to obtain medical or religious exemptions for the vaccine, and instructions for providing proof of vaccination.

More: An afterlife for old bricks? What’s up at Stillwater Business Park? You asked, we answered.

More: Why this grass-roots movement wants to merge Idaho with parts of Oregon and Northern California

Residence hall move-in dates are tentatively scheduled for Aug. 16-20. The university will require students living in the dorms to have received their second dose of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines or the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine by July 30 in order to move in, Guzzi said.

For student-athletes, proof of vaccine will be required as part of their annual medical clearance that starts in June, the university said.

— David Benda

DA: Police shooting justified at Walmart Distribution Center in Red Bluff

Wednesday, April 14

Tehama County District Attorney Matthew Rogers made it official Tuesday, reaffirming a preliminary finding his office issued last July that police broke no laws in shooting to death the man who opened fire with a rifle at a Walmart distribution center in Red Bluff last year.

Louis Wesley Lane, 31, of Redding, was shot and killed by police after he opened fire on employees at the center on June 27, 2020.

Authorities said Lane killed one employee and injured four others in the incident. The man who died was identified as Martin Haro-Lozano of Orland.

Related: Walmart distribution center shooting: Minute by minute, here’s what police say happened

More: Police: Accused Walmart shooter was high and had assault rifle during 2018 arrest

According to law enforcement, Lane drove his SUV around the parking lot four times before crashing it into the front of the building and setting fire to the vehicle.

Armed with a semi-automatic rifle, Lane began firing indiscriminately at the dozens of employees in the area, law enforcement has said.

Rogers said Lane did not have alcohol or drugs in his system at the time of the shooting.

“The totality of this investigation did not establish a clear-cut motive for Lane’s actions,” Rogers said.

— David Benda

PG&E customers in Lakehead to temporarily lose power starting Saturday

Tuesday, April 13

Nearly 1,000 Pacific Gas & Electric Co. customers in Lakehead will lose power starting late Saturday night, so the utility can perform maintenance on substation equipment.

PG&E sent letters to customers who will be impacted by the power outage, scheduled to begin at 11 p.m. Saturday and last until 7 a.m. Sunday. The outage will impact 956 homes and businesses, the utility said in a news release.

Crews will perform maintenance inside the Antler Substation. PG&E needs to de-energized the substation to safely do the work, officials said.

“We apologize for any inconvenience this outage may cause and have worked hard to keep the outage duration as short as possible so crews can safely complete this work,” Carl Schoenhofer, senior manager of PG&E’s North Valley Division, said in the news release.

— David Benda

Shasta County looking for grand jurors

Saturday, April 10

Shasta County residents are being recruited to serve on the 2021-22 grand jury.

The Shasta County Superior Court is asking interested residents to submit their names for possibly being nominated to the investigative body.

Superior Court judges will choose grand jurors from the applicants and other nominees as part of a 30-person prospective jury panel.

A random drawing will determine the 19 grand jurors, who serve for one year.

For more information, go to www.shastacountygrandjury.org

The deadline to complete and submit applications and questionnaires is April 30.

The prospective grand jurors will be interviewed in mid-May and the 2021-22 grand jury will be impaneled on June 24.

— Mike Chapman

Shasta District Fair set for June 23-26 with COVID-19 precautions

Thursday, April 8

The Shasta District Fair will take place this summer with the state’s safety protocols for COVID-19, the fair’s Board of Directors announced Thursday.

“We are excited to announce that the Shasta District Fair will be happening this year, with safety and COVID-19 precautions in place,” according to B.J. Macfarlane, CEO of the Shasta District Fair & Event Center.

The dates will be June 23-26, 2021. The fair will include commercial exhibits, food booths, grounds acts and the Junior Livestock show and auction.

Advance ticket sales begin May 1 with savings on season passes, carnival wristbands and single-day passes, fair officials said.

Exhibitor premium information and all other entry info is available online at www.shastadistrictfairandeventcenter.com.

The fair had to be canceled last year due to the coronavirus pandemic although the Junior Livestock Auction was allowed last June.

— Mike Chapman

Business center offers online summit next week

Wednesday, April 7

The Women’s Business Center at JEDI will hold a virtual summit for business owners and entrepreneurs who are seeking capital in Shasta, Siskiyou, Trinity and Humboldt counties.

The free online summit, called Dream Big & Fund It, runs from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. April 13-15.

The presentation is for small businesses to learn about loans, managing grants, start-up funding and more. Several community lenders from local banks will be presenters and be available for questions and anwers.

Topics include loan readiness, credit repair and creative/alternate financing options. 

The summit is funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Adminitration.

Register to attend all the sessions.Receive a link at www.jedionline.org/dream-big?/.

— Mike Chapman

More than 200 PG&E customers without power in Happy Valley

5 p.m. Wednesday UPDATE

Power was retored to the area at 3:48 p.m., PG&E said.

ORIGINAL STORY

Pacific Gas and Electric says 228 of its customers in Happy Valley are without power in an outage that started at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday.

PG&E estimates electricity will be restored by 2:30 p.m. Wednesday.

The power outage is due to scheduled maintenance along China Gulch Drive.

“Our preliminary determination is that your outage was caused by scheduled maintenance work,” the utility said on its website.

A repair crew is working to restore power.

— Mike Chapman

Power restored to PG&E customers north of Anderson

Friday, April 2

Pacific Gas and Electric Co. reported that power has been restored for the 1,620 customers north of Anderson who lost it on Thursday afternoon. 

The outage began around 2:46 p.m., according to the utility’s website. PG&E workers responded and power was restored around 4:30 p.m.

Earlier this afternoon, a vehicle crashed into a pole in the area, at the intersection of Riverland Drive and Knighton Road, according to California Highway Patrol communications. 

At 3:30 p.m., CHP also reported defective traffic signals at the intersection of Knighton Road and Churn Creek Road, less than a mile from the crash. 

More Redding news roundups

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BBQ Holdings, Inc. Reports Results for Fourth Quarter and https://davidthompsonthings.com/bbq-holdings-inc-reports-results-for-fourth-quarter-and/ https://davidthompsonthings.com/bbq-holdings-inc-reports-results-for-fourth-quarter-and/#respond Mon, 24 May 2021 08:10:32 +0000 https://davidthompsonthings.com/?p=506 MINNEAPOLIS, April 05, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — BBQ Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: BBQ) (the “Company”), an innovating global owner and operator of restaurants, today reported financial results for the fourth fiscal quarter and fiscal year ended January 3, 2021. Note: Results of the fourth quarter and fiscal year were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic as well […]]]>

MINNEAPOLIS, April 05, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — BBQ Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: BBQ) (the “Company”), an innovating global owner and operator of restaurants, today reported financial results for the fourth fiscal quarter and fiscal year ended January 3, 2021. Note: Results of the fourth quarter and fiscal year were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic as well as federal and state level mandates requiring restaurants to limit or eliminate in-store dining during various periods throughout the year.

Fourth Quarter 2020 Highlights:

  • Adjusted EBITDA, a non-GAAP measure, was $1.4 million which includes $1.9 million of COVID-related expenses.
  • Net loss of $2.8 million, driven partially by a decrease in same store sales and franchise-related revenue caused by COVID-related restrictions.
  • Company-owned Famous Dave’s fourth quarter same store net sales decreased 5.5% compared to fourth quarter 2019, with 59% of restaurants fully closed at one point during the quarter.
  • Franchise-operated same store net sales decreased 13.6%.
  • Granite City fourth quarter same store net sales decreased 40.7% compared to fourth quarter 2019 with 50% of restaurants fully closed at one point during the quarter.
  • Famous Dave’s franchisee to open its first line-service model restaurant in Coon Rapids, Minnesota.
  • The Company to sell its Famous Dave’s Woodbury, Minnesota location for $2.6 million and open a dual concept Famous Dave’s and Cowboy Jack’s restaurant and bar in Woodbury.
  • Famous Dave’s franchisee to open its first drive-thru prototype restaurant in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Fiscal Year 2020 Highlights:

  • Adjusted EBITDA, a non-GAAP measure, was $4.3 million which includes $5.5 million of COVID-related expenses.
  • Net income of $4.9 million, driven in part by a bargain purchase gain related to the acquisition of the Granite City brand.
  • Company-owned Famous Dave’s fiscal year same store net sales decreased 8.5% compared to fiscal year 2019.
  • As a percentage of net sales, Famous Dave’s reduced its food and beverage costs by 1.1% compared to 2019 and its labor costs by 4.7% over last year.
  • Franchise-operated same store net sales decreased 17.0%.
  • Granite City fiscal year same store net sales decreased 38.6% compared to fiscal year 2019.
  • The Company opened 7 Famous Dave’s ghost kitchens within Granite City restaurants with 1 more to open in April 2021.
  • Entered into a 25-unit development agreement with Bluestone Hospitality Group to open Famous Dave’s ghost kitchens and dual restaurant concepts with the Johnny Carino’s Italian brand.
  • Purchased the Granite City Food & Brewery brand on March 9, 2020.
  • Purchased the Real Urban BBQ brand March 16, 2020.

Sales highlights for the partial first quarter 2021 (Jan 4 – March 25, 2021) compared to the same period 2020 are as follows:

  • Comparable sales for Famous Dave’s increased 9.3%. Sales decreased 3.2% in January, decreased 2.9% in February, and increased 43.9% in March.
  • Comparable sales for Granite City decreased 10.6%. Sales decreased 20.0% in January, decreased 26.3% in February, and increased 60.8% in March.

Executive Comments

Jeff Crivello, CEO, commented, “We are extremely pleased with our operating results for the year considering the unparalleled situation caused by the pandemic. Throughout 2020 our team focused on innovation, technology, and marketing to expand our off-premise service in all concepts. We opened seven Famous Dave’s ghost kitchens in existing Granite City locations, opened a dual concept with Texas T-Bone Steakhouse in Colorado Springs, entered into a 25-unit development agreement to grow the Famous Dave’s brand in select locations across the U.S., and rolled-out a new unified POS system. We have made significant strides in reducing food and labor costs at all locations and are continuing to find more improvements from some of the lessons learned over the past year. Most importantly, as we begin to emerge from the state regulations caused by the pandemic, we are beginning to see sales ramp up to levels at or above pre-pandemic levels. During the month of March when sales increased 43.9% at Famous Dave’s and 60.8% at Granite City, we were able to generate record store-level EBITDA. Given our most recent performance in Q1, we are feeling very positive about 2021 and what it means for all our stakeholders.”

Key Operating Metrics

                           
    Three Months Ended       Year Ended
    January 3, 2021   December 29, 2019       January 3, 2021      December 29, 2019
Restaurant count:                          
Franchise-operated     98       96         98       96  
Company-owned     47       33         47       33  
Total     145       129         145       129  
Same store net restaurant sales %:                          
Franchise-operated     (13.6 )%     0.4 %       (17.0 )%     1.0 %
Company-owned     (5.5 )%     4.7 %       (8.5 )%     2.0 %
Total     (11.6 )%     0.9 %       (15.3 )%     1.1 %
                           
(in thousands, expect per share data)                          
                           
System-wide restaurant sales(1)   $ 78,894     $ 77,596       $ 301,743     $ 335,244  
                           
Net income attributable to shareholders   $ (2,836 )   $ (1,788 )     $ 4,947     $ (649 )
                           
Net (loss) income attributable to shareholders, per diluted share   $ (0.31 )   $ (0.20 )     $ 0.54     $ (0.07 )
                           
Adjusted EBITDA(2)   $ 1,382     $ (692 )     $ 4,295     $ 3,423  
(1) System-wide restaurant sales include sales for all Company-owned and franchise-operated restaurants, as reported by franchisees. Restaurant sales for franchise-operated restaurants are not revenues of the Company and are not included in the Company’s consolidated financial statements.
(2) Adjusted EBITDA is a non-GAAP measures. A reconciliation of all non-GAAP measures to the most directly comparable GAAP measure is included in the accompanying financial tables. See “Non-GAAP Reconciliation.”

Fourth Quarter 2020 Review

Total revenue for the fourth quarter of 2020 was $34.3 million, up 45.3% from the fourth quarter of 2019. The increase in year-over-year restaurant net sales for the quarter ended January 3, 2021 was driven primarily by the addition of 18 Granite City restaurants, a Clark Crew BBQ and a Real Urban Barbecue restaurant.  

To-go sales, which were 62.1% of our same store sales at Company-owned Famous Dave’s restaurants, increased 82.9% in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020 compared to the prior year period. This increase in same store sales was offset by a decrease of 46.8% of our dine-in sales which made up 29.6% of our business, and a decrease of 48.9% in net catering sales which made up 8.3% of our business. This decline in dine-in and catering same store sales was due primarily to federal, state and local mandates prohibiting large group gatherings and in-store dining in an attempt to reduce the spread of COVID-19.  

Restaurant-level operating margin, as a percentage of restaurant net sales, for Company-owned restaurants was 2.1% in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020 compared to (3.0)% in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2019. This increase in restaurant-level operating margin was primarily a result of the reduction of labor and food costs as our restaurant operators adjusted to the increase in to-go sales and reduction of dine-in customers as a result of COVID-19 concerns.

General and administrative expenses for the quarter ended January 3, 2021 and December 29, 2019 represented approximately 12.9% and 14.6% of total revenues, respectively. The decrease in general and administrative expenses as a percentage of revenue in the fourth quarter of 2020 was due in part to the increase in the revenue base with the addition of 20 locations during 2020.

Net loss attributable to shareholders was approximately $2.8 million, or $0.31 per share, in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2020 compared to net loss of $1.8 million, or $0.20 per share, in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2019. Adjusted EBITDA, a non-GAAP measure, was approximately $1.4 million, or $0.15 per share, compared to adjusted EBITDA of approximately $(692,000), or $(0.08) per share, in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2019. A reconciliation between adjusted EBITDA and its most directly comparable GAAP measure is included in the accompanying financial tables.

Fiscal Year 2020 Review

Total revenue for fiscal year of 2020 was $121.4 million, up 45.3% from fiscal year 2019. The increase in year-over-year restaurant net sales for the year ended January 3, 2021 was driven primarily by the addition of 18 Granite City restaurants, a Clark Crew BBQ and a Real Urban BBQ restaurant.  

To-go sales, which were 61.9% of our same store sales at Company-owned Famous Dave’s restaurants, increased 72.6% in fiscal 2020 compared to fiscal 2019. This increase in same store sales was offset by a decrease of 46.3% of our dine-in sales which made up 30.9% of our business, and a decrease of 54.6% in net catering sales which made up 7.2% of our business. This decline in dine-in and catering same store sales was due primarily to federal, state and local mandates prohibiting large group gatherings and in-store dining in an attempt to reduce the spread of COVID-19.   

Restaurant-level operating margin, as a percentage of restaurant net sales, for Company-owned restaurants was 1.3% in fiscal 2020 compared to (0.1)% in fiscal 2019. This increase in restaurant-level operating margin was primarily a result of the reduction of labor and food costs as our restaurant operators adjusted to the increase in to-go sales and reduction of dine-in customers as a result of COVID-19 concerns.

General and administrative expenses for the fiscal year ended January 3, 2021 and December 29, 2019 represented approximately 11.9% and 13.2% of total revenues, respectively. The decrease in general and administrative expenses as a percentage of revenue in fiscal 2020 was due in part to the increase in the revenue base with the addition of 20 locations during 2020.

Net income attributable to shareholders was approximately $4.9 million, or $0.54 per share, in fiscal 2020 compared to net loss of $649,000, or $0.07 per share, in fiscal 2019. Adjusted EBITDA, a non-GAAP measure, was approximately $4.3 million, or $0.47 per share, compared to adjusted EBITDA of approximately $3.4 million or $0.38 per share, in fiscal 2019. A reconciliation between adjusted EBITDA and its most directly comparable GAAP measure is included in the accompanying financial tables.

About BBQ Holdings

BBQ Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: BBQ) BBQ Holdings is a national restaurant company engaged in the ownership and operation of casual and fast dining restaurants. As of January 3, 2021, BBQ Holdings had four brands with 145 “brick and mortar” locations in 31 states and three countries, including 47 company-owned and 98 franchise-operated restaurants. In addition to these locations, the Company opened seven Company-owned Famous Dave’s ghost kitchens operating within its Granite City locations, and seven Famous Dave’s franchisee ghost kitchens operating out of the kitchen of another restaurant location or a shared kitchen space. While BBQ Holdings continues to diversify its ownership in the restaurant community, it was founded with the principle of combining the “art and science” of barbecue to serve up the very best of the best to barbecue lovers everywhere. BBQ Holdings, through partnerships, has extended Travis Clark’s award-winning line of barbecue sauces, rubs and seasonings into the retail market. Along with a wide variety of BBQ favorites served at their BBQ restaurants, BBQ Holdings newest addition, Granite City Food and Brewery, offers award winning craft beer and a made-from-scratch, chef driven menu featuring contemporary American cuisine.  

Non-GAAP Financial Measures

To supplement its consolidated financial statements, which are prepared and presented in accordance with accounting principles generally accepted in the United States (“GAAP”), the Company uses non-GAAP measures including those indicated below. These non-GAAP measures exclude significant expenses and income that are required by GAAP to be recorded in the Company’s consolidated financial statements and are subject to inherent limitations. By providing non-GAAP measures, together with a reconciliation to the most comparable GAAP measure, the Company believes that it is enhancing investors’ understanding of the Company’s business and results of operations. These measures are not intended to be considered in isolation of, as substitutes for, or superior to, financial measures prepared and presented in accordance with GAAP. The non-GAAP measures presented may be different from the measures used by other companies. The Company urges investors to review the reconciliation of its non-GAAP measures to the most directly comparable GAAP measure, included in the accompanying financial tables.

Adjusted net income attributable to shareholders is net income attributable to shareholders, plus asset impairment, estimated lease termination charges and other closing costs, settlement agreements, net (loss) gain on disposal of equipment, stock-based compensation, severance, acquisition costs, and the related tax impact. This number is divided by the weighted-average number of diluted shares of common stock outstanding during each period presented to arrive at adjusted net income, per share. Adjusted EBITDA is net income (loss), plus asset impairment, estimated lease termination charges and other closing costs, settlement agreements, depreciation and amortization, interest expense, net, net (loss) gain on disposal of equipment, stock-based compensation, severance, acquisition costs and provision (benefit) for income taxes.

Forward-Looking Statements

Statements in this press release that are not strictly historical, including but not limited to statements regarding the timing of the Company’s restaurant openings, the timing of refreshes and the timing or success of refranchising plans, are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, which may cause the Company’s actual results to differ materially from expected results. Although the Company believes the expectations reflected in any forward-looking statements are based on reasonable assumptions, it can give no assurance that its expectation will be attained. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the Company’s expectation include the impact of the COVID-19 virus pandemic, financial performance, restaurant industry conditions, execution of restaurant development and construction programs, franchisee performance, changes in local or national economic conditions, availability of financing, governmental approvals and other risks detailed from time to time in the Company’s SEC reports.

Contact: Jeff Crivello – Chief Executive Officer
  jeff.crivello@bbq-holdings.com
   

BBQ HOLDINGS, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES
CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF OPERATIONS
(in thousands, except per share data)
(Unaudited)

                       
  Three Months Ended   Year Ended
  January 3, 2021   December 29, 2019   January 3, 2021      December 29, 2019
Revenue:                      
Restaurant sales, net $ 31,293     $ 20,296     $ 109,544     $ 68,564  
Franchise royalty and fee revenue   2,291       2,566       8,919       12,126  
Franchisee national advertising fund contributions   298       341       1,124       1,616  
Licensing and other revenue   427       410       1,850       1,249  
Total revenue   34,309       23,613       121,437       83,555  
                       
Costs and expenses:                      
Food and beverage costs   9,661       6,473       33,867       21,541  
Labor and benefits costs   10,252       7,312       37,228       24,565  
Operating expenses   10,733       7,124       36,984       22,555  
Depreciation and amortization expenses   1,301       876       5,121       2,231  
General and administrative expenses   4,422       3,445       14,395       10,992  
National advertising fund expenses   298       341       1,124       1,616  
Asset impairment, estimated lease termination charges and other closing costs, net   869       578       5,683       1,296  
Pre-opening expenses   103       366       10       460  
Gain on disposal of property, net   (703 )     100       (1,810 )     (74 )
Total costs and expenses   36,936       26,615       132,602       85,182  
                       
Loss from operations   (2,627 )     (3,002 )     (11,165 )     (1,627 )
                       
Other (expense) income :                      
Interest expense   (214 )     (102 )     (805 )     (494 )
Interest income   49       101       154       215  
Gain on bargain purchase   (429 )           13,246        
Total other income (expense)   (594 )     (1 )     12,595       (279 )
                       
Income (loss) before income taxes   (3,221 )     (3,003 )     1,430       (1,906 )
                       
Income tax benefit   318       684       2,837       659  
                       
Net income (loss)   (2,903 )     (2,319 )     4,267       (1,247 )
Net loss attributable to non-controlling interest   67       531       680       598  
Net income (loss) attributable to shareholders $ (2,836 )   $ (1,788 )   $ 4,947     $ (649 )
                       
                       
Income (loss) per common share:                      
Basic net income (loss) per share attributable to shareholders $ (0.31 )   $ (0.20 )   $ 0.54     $ (0.07 )
Diluted net income (loss) per share attributable to shareholders $ (0.31 )   $ (0.20 )   $ 0.54     $ (0.07 )
Weighted average shares outstanding – basic   9,175       9,117       9,155       9,099  
Weighted average shares outstanding – diluted   9,175       9,117       9,168       9,099  
                               
                               

BBQ HOLDINGS, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES
OPERATING RESULTS
(unaudited)

                   
    Three Months Ended     Year Ended
    January 3, 2021      December 29, 2019           January 3, 2021      December 29, 2019
Food and beverage costs(1)   30.9    31.9      30.9    31.4
Labor and benefits costs(1)   32.8    36.0      34.0    35.8
Operating expenses(1)   34.3    35.1      33.8    32.9
Restaurant level operating margin(1)(3)     2.1    (3.0 )%      1.3    (0.1 )%
Depreciation and amortization expenses(2)   3.8    3.7      4.2    2.7
General and administrative expenses(2)   12.9    14.6      11.9    13.2
(Loss) income from operations(2)   (7.7 )%    (12.7 )%      (9.2 )%    (1.9 )%
(1) As a percentage of restaurant sales, net
(2) As a percentage of total revenue
(3) Restaurant level margins are equal to restaurant sales, net, less restaurant level food and beverage costs, labor and benefit costs, and operating expenses.
   
   

BBQ HOLDINGS, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES
CONSOLIDATED BALANCE SHEETS
(in thousands, except per share data)
(unaudited)

             
ASSETS            
Current assets:   January 3, 2021      December 29, 2019
Cash and cash equivalents   $ 18,101     $ 5,325  
Restricted cash     1,502       761  
Accounts receivable, net of allowance for doubtful accounts of $277,000 and $132,000, respectively     4,823       4,379  
Inventories     2,271       1,346  
Prepaid income taxes and income taxes receivable           264  
Prepaid expenses and other current assets     1,252       1,356  
Assets held for sale     1,070       2,842  
Total current assets     29,019       16,273  
             
Property, equipment and leasehold improvements, net     32,389       19,756  
             
Other assets:            
Operating lease right-of-use assets     61,634       25,962  
Goodwill     601       640  
Intangible assets, net     9,967       2,213  
Deferred tax asset, net     4,934       6,646  
Other assets     1,724       1,591  
    $ 140,268     $ 73,081  
             
LIABILITIES AND SHAREHOLDERS’ EQUITY            
             
Current liabilities:            
Accounts payable   $ 6,385     $ 3,967  
Current portion of lease liabilities     6,185       4,230  
Current portion of long-term debt     2,111       616  
Accrued compensation and benefits     2,390       2,694  
Other current liabilities     9,766       4,975  
Total current liabilities     26,837       16,482  
             
Long-term liabilities:            
Lease liabilities, less current portion     63,105       26,957  
Long-term debt, less current portion     22,169       6,258  
Other liabilities     1,224       1,610  
Total liabilities     113,335       51,307  
             
Shareholders’ equity:            
Common stock, $.01 par value, 100,000 shares authorized, 9,307 and 9,272 shares issued and outstanding at January 3, 2021 and December 29, 2019, respectively     93       93  
Additional paid-in capital     8,748       7,856  
Retained earnings     19,370       14,423  
Total shareholders’ equity     28,211       22,372  
Non-controlling interest     (1,278 )     (598 )
Total equity     26,933       21,774  
    $ 140,268     $ 73,081  
 
 

BBQ HOLDINGS, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES
CONSOLIDATED STATEMENTS OF CASH FLOWS
(in thousands)
(unaudited)

             
    Year Ended
       January 3, 2021      December 29, 2019
Cash flows from operating activities:            
Net income (loss)   $ 4,267     $ (1,247 )
Adjustments to reconcile net income (loss) to cash flows provided by operations:            
Depreciation and amortization     5,121       2,231  
Stock-based compensation     886       463  
Net gain on disposal     (1,783 )     (74 )
Asset impairment, estimated lease termination charges and other closing costs, net     5,483       1,273  
Gain on bargain purchase     (13,246 )      
Deferred income taxes     (2,837 )     (688 )
Bad debts expense (recovery)     567       239  
Other non-cash items     699       291  
Changes in operating assets and liabilities:            
Accounts receivable, net     (1,011 )     (1,582 )
Other assets     (752 )     (449 )
Accounts payable     2,418       258  
Accrued and other liabilities     2,276       1,867  
Cash flows provided by operating activities     2,088       2,582  
             
Cash flows from investing activities:            
Proceeds from the sale of assets     2,869       33  
Purchases of property, equipment and leasehold improvements     (3,499 )     (6,755 )
Payments for acquired restaurants     (5,381 )     (6,188 )
Advances on notes receivable           (150 )
Payments received on note receivable     42       31  
Cash flows used for investing activities     (5,969 )     (13,029 )
             
Cash flows from financing activities:            
Proceeds from long-term debt     22,058       4,300  
Payments for debt issuance costs     (45 )     (54 )
Payments on long-term debt     (4,621 )     (175 )
Proceeds from exercise of stock options     6       22  
Cash provided by financing activities     17,398       4,093  
             
Increase (decrease) in cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash     13,517       (6,354 )
Cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash, beginning of period     6,086       12,440  
Cash, cash equivalents and restricted cash, end of period   $ 19,603     $ 6,086  
 
 

BBQ HOLDINGS, INC. AND SUBSIDIARIES
NON-GAAP RECONCILIATION
(in thousands, except per share data)
(unaudited)

                           
    Three Months Ended       Year Ended
(dollars in thousands)   January 3, 2021   December 29, 2019       January 3, 2021        December 29, 2019
Net income   $ (2,903 )   $ (2,319 )     $ 4,267     $ (1,247 )
Asset impairment and estimated lease termination charges and other closing costs     869       578         5,683       1,296  
Depreciation and amortization     1,301       876         5,121       2,231  
Interest expense, net     165       1         651       279  
Net (gain) loss on disposal of equipment     (703 )     100         (1,810 )     (74 )
Stock-based compensation     517       131         939       354  
Acquisition costs     (58 )     249         (105 )     770  
Pre-opening costs     103       366         10       460  
Severance     35       10         86       13  
Gain on bargain purchase     429               (13,246 )      
Provision for income taxes     (318 )     (684 )       (2,837 )     (659 )
COVID-19-related expense     1,945               5,536        
Adjusted EBITDA   $ 1,382     $ (692 )     $ 4,295     $ 3,423  

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Fourth Quarter 2020 Economic and Credit Availability Survey https://davidthompsonthings.com/fourth-quarter-2020-economic-and-credit-availability-survey/ https://davidthompsonthings.com/fourth-quarter-2020-economic-and-credit-availability-survey/#respond Thu, 08 Apr 2021 02:38:38 +0000 https://davidthompsonthings.com/fourth-quarter-2020-economic-and-credit-availability-survey/ Availability-Economic-Credit-Q4-2020 CBIA Fourth Quarter 2020 Economy and Credit Availability Survey found that while a quarter of the companies surveyed suffered losses last year, more companies made profits than expected. Just under half (49%) now believe Connecticut’s business climate is in decline, down from previous polls. Of those who see a decline, 58% cite government policies, […]]]>

Availability-Economic-Credit-Q4-2020

CBIA Fourth Quarter 2020 Economy and Credit Availability Survey found that while a quarter of the companies surveyed suffered losses last year, more companies made profits than expected.

Just under half (49%) now believe Connecticut’s business climate is in decline, down from previous polls.

Of those who see a decline, 58% cite government policies, state spending and regulations as the cause.

Six percent think the state’s business climate is improving and 45% see it as static.

“Our state’s economic recovery is still fragile and we cannot ignore the challenges that businesses continue to face,” said Chris DiPentima, President and CEO of CBIA.

“Businesses have pivoted to create essential PPE, continue to invest in their workforce and put their community first.

“We need policies that support their recovery and growth, not those that add burdens and costs to the companies that have struggled the most. “

Profitability, Operations

Only 26% of those surveyed reported current growth in sales (up from 39% in 2019), while 40% hold steady and 34% contract.

When it comes to the impact of COVID on business operations, 73% of businesses report operating on normal hours and capacity, while 24% are still operating with reduced hours and / or capacity, and 3% have increased their hours and / or their capacity.

Almost a quarter (24%) of employers plan to increase their workforce size in the next six months, while only 11% plan to cut.

For employers reporting reduced operations, 35% said they used layoffs, 33% reduced hours without using the state work-sharing program, 12% used the work-sharing program, and 8% reduced their use of temporary and / or contract workers.

However, supply chain issues persist, with 40% of businesses reporting continued disruption due to COVID-19 restrictions.

Almost a third (29%) of those surveyed said their supply chains were disrupted but returning to normal, 21% reported no disruption and 10% said this did not apply.

Pending legislation

Several outstanding political issues worry Connecticut business leaders as they look to the future.

Health care costs are a major concern for employers.

Ninety-eight percent of respondents say they are somewhat (23%) or very concerned (75%) about employee health care costs, with almost identical levels of concern about the financial impact on their business.

More than two-thirds (69%) oppose a public health care plan, 57% fear taxpayers will subsidize plan deficits, and nearly 50% say they do not trust the state to run the plans health insurance.

The Connecticut Unemployment Trust Fund became insolvent in 2020, forcing hundreds of millions of dollars to borrow from the federal government.

When asked about the impact that the increase in unemployment taxes will have on their businesses, 43% of respondents predicted it would be moderate, 34% thought it would be important, 16% thought it would be minimal and 6% were not sure.

More than two-thirds (67%) support reforms to Connecticut’s unemployment benefit system, including higher income thresholds and requiring the exhaustion of severance pay before collecting unemployment.

Infrastructure

Employers were asked to indicate their level of support for various sources of income for financing transport infrastructure investments.

The least popular among the proposals were increasing taxes and fees, including gasoline tax (75% opposition), license or permit fees (69%), and sales taxes (68 %).

The most acceptable were the prioritization of projects in terms of profitability (87% support) and the implementation of reforms to encourage public-private partnerships (71% support).

Concepts such as tolls, accounting changes and revenue embezzlement, reducing discounts on electric vehicle purchases, and increasing sureties produced mixed levels of support.

Credit availability

Access to credit and adequate funding opportunities, excluding state and federal COVID assistance programs, appear reasonably healthy, with 53% of respondents saying they were able to meet their demands. needs in 2020.

A quarter (25%) of businesses said they did not need access to credit at all, 13% said partial satisfaction and 9% said they were unable to meet their financing needs.

When asked to rate the current loan climate in Connecticut and share their credit outlook for the next six months, more than half (54%) rated it as satisfactory.

Eighty-six percent of employers said they applied for the first round of the federal paycheck protection program, while 40% said they applied for the second round.

More than half (57%) of companies said they have recently delayed their investment and investment decisions.

For the 60% of companies still looking for financing, more than half (58%) say they need it the most for working capital (daily operations, inventory, bridging loans), while 22% need it for capital investments in machinery and equipment and 10% for the expansion of a factory or office.

Of the 231 companies that responded to the survey, 88% have fewer than 100 employees. Forty-four percent are manufacturers, 12% are in commercial and professional services, 9% in construction and 7% in retail trade.

CBIA Fourth Quarter 2020 Economy and Credit Availability Survey was emailed to 3,213 companies in January, with a response rate of 7.2% and a margin of error of +/- 6%.


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Nathaniel Rateliff and Lumineers to perform at Save Our Stages Fest https://davidthompsonthings.com/nathaniel-rateliff-and-lumineers-to-perform-at-save-our-stages-fest/ https://davidthompsonthings.com/nathaniel-rateliff-and-lumineers-to-perform-at-save-our-stages-fest/#respond Thu, 08 Apr 2021 02:38:26 +0000 https://davidthompsonthings.com/nathaniel-rateliff-and-lumineers-to-perform-at-save-our-stages-fest/ Colorado spots the Boulder Theater as it looked in July 2010. (Cyrus McCrimmon, Denver Post file) Seven months of economic and cultural chaos have left the music industry as battered as any. But unlike businesses or even individual artists, emergency funding for theater owners has rarely gone beyond standard payday loans. That’s why independent sites […]]]>

Colorado spots the Boulder Theater as it looked in July 2010. (Cyrus McCrimmon, Denver Post file)

Seven months of economic and cultural chaos have left the music industry as battered as any. But unlike businesses or even individual artists, emergency funding for theater owners has rarely gone beyond standard payday loans.

That’s why independent sites have increasingly banded together to push for more federal and state action to help their closed, restricted and losing businesses. Visibility campaigns, such as last month’s fluorescent red demonstration of solidarity for the #WeMakeEvents campaign – have helped raise awareness while recently introduced laws such as Save Our Stages and RESTART Act aim to channel $ 10 billion to independent sites to avoid closure.

RESTART, in particular, was co-authored by Colorado Senator Michael Bennet (D) and Senator Todd Young (R-Ind.).

RELATED: Your favorite Colorado concert hall is at risk of shutting down. This is why it will be illuminated in red tonight.

The statistics – inside and outside Colorado – remain stubbornly grim, with 90% of members of the National Independent Venue Association (NIVA) saying they will be forced to shut down permanently without federal help, a poll found. Independent theaters should also lose up to $ 8.9 billion if they stay dark for the rest of 2020, NIVA said.

In Colorado, the Boulder Theater is joining this weekend’s Save Our Stages Fest, or #SOSFest, as a venue. The three-day virtual event – October 16-18 on YouTube and produced by NIVA – will broadcast live a performance by Nathaniel Rateliff at 5:10 p.m. on Sunday, October 18, followed by a performance at 7:05 pm by The Lumineers. (These two nationally known Colorado bands have become fixtures on the musical performance circuit of 2020.)

The money raised during the show will go to the NIVA Emergency Aid Fund (nivassoc.org/erf), the organizers said in a press release. Both requests and donations are accepted.

The live broadcast (at bit.ly/3lPT5bc) will be hosted by Reggie Watts, leader of the comedy group and “The Late Late Show with James Corden”, and will also include performances by Foo Fighters, Brittany Howard, Dave Matthews, Dillon Francis, The Roots, Miley Cyrus, Reba McEntire and others – each from an independent concert hall in the United States like the Boulder Theater.

“Small concert halls and those that are really struggling are not only culturally important, they are also emotionally important,” Foo Fighters frontman Grohl said in a statement for the event. .

NIVA includes over 90 Colorado organizations as members, Denver music festivals and underground spaces for all ages at the Red Rocks Amphitheater, jazz clubs, historic theaters and comedy clubs.

The week of October 24-30 has also been designated as Independent Venue Week, which is designed to bring attention to the plight of independent venues with more programming and fundraising. The online event features live and recorded sets, educational content for students, and an online auction for the NIVA Emergency Relief Fund.

“It was from this national network of independent sites cultivated by IVW (Independent Venue Week) over the past few years that NIVA was born,” the organizers said in a press release.

This week, Denver’s historic Oriental Theater also launched an online fundraising campaign to save the venue of the Highland district, which reliably offers a mix of punk, burlesque, movie screenings, comedy and other miscellaneous entertainment.

“While the Oriental Theater was able to reopen on August 1 for very small and socially distant performances, it can still only operate at 10% of capacity,” organizers said.

For each donation, fans will be “rewarded with tiered prizes ranging from $ 10 to $ 5,000,” according to a press release. “Highlighted prizes include: a full set of outfits with sticker, pin, t-shirt and hat for $ 80; a full private evening at the theater with a bar tab for $ 2,500; and sponsoring the lobby bar for $ 5,000, ”organizers said.

know it outdoor instagram

3 Kings has announced its final closure during the coronavirus shutdown. This week, the owners of the Berkeley venue Tennyson Local 46 said they are closing permanently after Halloween due to financial losses from the pandemic.

RELATED: As 3 Kings Tavern closes, South Broadway veterans worry about the area’s future

“They paid really well, were extremely professional, and covered all of the basics of a bar that Denver was really proud of, overall,” musician Lauren Gilliroy said of Local 46 in an email to The Denver Post. “Their absence will be felt in the music community and beyond. “

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter, In The Know, to get entertainment news straight to your inbox.


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It’s Sting Season in Alabama: How to Identify Yellow Wasps, Hornets, and Honey Bee Nests https://davidthompsonthings.com/its-sting-season-in-alabama-how-to-identify-yellow-wasps-hornets-and-honey-bee-nests/ https://davidthompsonthings.com/its-sting-season-in-alabama-how-to-identify-yellow-wasps-hornets-and-honey-bee-nests/#respond Thu, 08 Apr 2021 02:38:15 +0000 https://davidthompsonthings.com/its-sting-season-in-alabama-how-to-identify-yellow-wasps-hornets-and-honey-bee-nests/ It’s almost that time of year when biting insects will be at their peak. An unusually milder winter coupled with an abundant food supply led researchers at the Alabama Cooperative Extension System and Auburn University to warn Alabamians of massive yellow jacket nests after discovering this year two so-called “perennial nests”. While yellow jackets are […]]]>

It’s almost that time of year when biting insects will be at their peak.

An unusually milder winter coupled with an abundant food supply led researchers at the Alabama Cooperative Extension System and Auburn University to warn Alabamians of massive yellow jacket nests after discovering this year two so-called “perennial nests”.

While yellow jackets are the most common insect that stings people and causes the most death from anaphylactic shock, according to Dr. Charles Ray of the Extension and Auburn, there are other similar creatures that could constitute a danger in Alabama.

To the untrained eye, there isn’t much of a difference in the appearance of yellow jacket nests and other biting insects like hornets and bees, Ray. The easiest way to identify the nests of various insects is their location, the expert said.

Yellow jackets

Yellow vests are very common in the South.

“In disturbed areas – where humans live – they do pretty well,” Ray said.

Yellow vests usually build their nests in a cavity in the ground and often search for abandoned rodent nests.

“If he comes out of the ground, it’s usually a yellow jacket or a bumblebee,” Ray said.

The nests are usually shaped like large soccer balls and are made of paper. They have several levels of combs, like honeycombs, with paper on the outside. The entrance to the nest is at the very bottom.

“Most people meet them because they get too close to them or pass them the lawn mower. Ray said. “Most of their bites will occur in the defense of their nests.”

Bumblebees

Like the yellow jacket, the bumblebee also nests in cavities but is not as common in Alabama.

Unlike the yellow jacket, bumblebee nests do not have combs. Instead, the bees make wax cups on the nest floor and fill it with nectar and pollen for the bee larvae to crawl into.

Bumblebee nests are also much smaller than yellow jackets. The maximum size for a bumblebee nest is around 600 bees, while yellowjacket nests could hold up to 5,000 workers by peak season in August, according to Ray.

Hornets

Hornets, including the bald hornet and the European hornet, make their nests above the ground, but bald hornets prefer higher elevations.

“Bald hornets nest so high that they rarely interact with people,” Ray said.

European hornets, which were introduced to North America through New York Harbor around 1848 and slowly spread throughout the eastern half of the United States, prefer hollowed trees for their nests. These nests will also extend outside a tree and be made of paper.

European hornets defend a larger radius around their nests than yellow jackets, with some hornets known to sting people within 30 feet of their homes.

“They’re scary bugs if they’re after you,” Ray said. “They fly at 35 miles an hour. You are not going to outrun them.

Honey bees

Honey bees nest in cavities but make their nests out of wax – using the beeswax they produce – instead of paper. The most likely locations for honey bee nests are inside trees or near flowers.

Honey bees produce by colony division, or “swarming,” when they escape from their cramped nest. The bees will land on a tree branch while the colony scouts will find a cavity to build a new nest. They travel as a unit during the swarm and look like a small tornado.

Ants

Ants generally do not build structures for nests.

Most stinging ants, like the fire ant, nest in the ground. Some will dig and search for rotten wood and the nest will not be visible.

Ant nests can be underground and can extend up to six feet underground, according to Ray.


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David Beckham has recovered from an ACL injury and could play in Galaxy game on Saturday https://davidthompsonthings.com/david-beckham-has-recovered-from-an-acl-injury-and-could-play-in-galaxy-game-on-saturday/ https://davidthompsonthings.com/david-beckham-has-recovered-from-an-acl-injury-and-could-play-in-galaxy-game-on-saturday/#respond Thu, 08 Apr 2021 02:38:03 +0000 https://davidthompsonthings.com/david-beckham-has-recovered-from-an-acl-injury-and-could-play-in-galaxy-game-on-saturday/ AP file photoDavid Beckham participates in his first practice since returning to the Los Angeles Galaxy MLS football team, at the Galaxy Training Center at the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. On Wednesday August 11, 2010. David Beckham is eligible to play in the Los Angeles Galaxy’s home game against Columbus on Saturday after […]]]>

David Beckham participates in his first practice since returning to the Los Angeles Galaxy MLS football team, at the Galaxy Training Center at the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif. On Wednesday August 11, 2010.

David Beckham is eligible to play in the Los Angeles Galaxy’s home game against Columbus on Saturday after being out for nearly six months with an Achilles tendon injury.

Beckham tore his left tendon on March 14 while playing on loan with AC Milan, undergoing surgery two days later on an injury that kept him out of the World Cup.

After leading Los Angeles to the MLS Cup final last November, Beckham has not played this season for the Galaxy, which still lead the Western Conference with 44 points and field US internationals Landon Donovan and Edson Buddle.

“Not playing for six months is tough,” Beckham said after a practice session at Carson. “This is the first time this has happened to me. I had injuries, but nothing kept me in for this long. It made me realize how much I love the game, and I am not ready to finish. “

Beckham, 35, believes he could play “a few more years”, growing more enthusiastic about the Galaxy’s playoff push and his slim possibility of ever returning to the England national team.

Beckham is less interested in replaying for a European club. After several years of almost uninterrupted play, Beckham has indicated he would likely turn down a loan to AC Milan or another team in favor of a more relaxing winter.

“I need it – my body needs it,” Beckham said. “I’ve been hitting pretty hard the last few years, and this injury is because of that, so I think now is the time for me to take a look at myself and my fitness.… Three months in the Seychelles would be adorable, but I have three boys who go to school, so that can’t happen. “

Beckham was not really inactive during his recovery. After traveling with the England national team to South Africa, Beckham returned to train with the Galaxy on August 10, gradually increasing his training regimen over the past four weeks.

He played 45 minutes in a practice match on Wednesday, saying he felt exhausted early on before regaining a second wind midway through.

“I’m ready, to be honest,” Beckham said. “I’ve worked hard with rehab and I’m trying to get some strength back in my legs.… I think I can play part of the game (Saturday). Obviously, without playing for six months, you have to be careful a few. minutes at a time. If I can play 10, 15, 20 minutes, I hope I can do it. “

Arena is more cautious, noting that Beckham is still a week away from the expected six-month recovery time after such a serious injury. The Galaxy braintrust has not decided whether Beckham will play against Columbus.

“I think he’s ahead of schedule,” Arena said. “Our original goal was to get him back on the pitch on October 1. We think that could be increased. Decision making should be based on David being on the pitch when he’s ready to play and he’s on the pitch. isn’t likely to get hurt, and that has to be in the best interest of our team as well, but that comes close.… He’s a guy who likes to defy the odds. “

Beckham has seven goals and 15 assists in 41 career regular-season games with Los Angeles. He only played 11 games for the Galaxy last year after spending the first half of the season with AC Milan.

Although focused on Los Angeles’ remaining season, Beckham has not canceled the opportunity to replay for his country. England manager Fabio Capello was widely criticized last month for saying Beckham was too old to play for the national side again, forcing Capello to back down.

Beckham has closely followed England’s performances in victories against Switzerland and Bulgaria in the Euro 2012 qualifiers. He is also on good terms with Capello, speaking to the manager by phone shortly before the English team does meet to prepare for qualifying.

“I’ve always had a good relationship with Fabio, and that hasn’t changed,” Beckham said. “He’s the England manager, and he has to look to the future, look to some great and talented young players. These players have to be lucky, and they will be. But obviously the manager is aware that ‘there must be some old heads in there, and some experience.

“If I’m a part of this then great, but like I said my main goal right now is to get back in shape and play again.”

VIDEO: Beckham’s first day of training (August 11)


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Lack of supply is driving real estate prices up in Canada? “Puhleeze,” says BMO https://davidthompsonthings.com/lack-of-supply-is-driving-real-estate-prices-up-in-canada-puhleeze-says-bmo/ https://davidthompsonthings.com/lack-of-supply-is-driving-real-estate-prices-up-in-canada-puhleeze-says-bmo/#respond Thu, 08 Apr 2021 02:37:46 +0000 https://davidthompsonthings.com/lack-of-supply-is-driving-real-estate-prices-up-in-canada-puhleeze-says-bmo/ One of the country’s top economists criticizes the supply-price discourse. BMO Chief Economist Douglas Porter sent a note to a customer disputing an inventory shortage. He thinks it’s important to “crush” two myths about the GTA’s exploding home sales in March. Let’s dive into this socket. Myth 1: last March sales were distorted by the […]]]>

One of the country’s top economists criticizes the supply-price discourse. BMO Chief Economist Douglas Porter sent a note to a customer disputing an inventory shortage. He thinks it’s important to “crush” two myths about the GTA’s exploding home sales in March. Let’s dive into this socket.

Myth 1: last March sales were distorted by the pandemic

GTA home sales had a rocket attached to them, and many dismiss it as a data distortion. The hypothesis is that the pandemic slowed down home sales activity in March 2020. A low number in March 2020 would mean that the 12.3% year-over-year increase appears larger than it is. is not. Porter wants people to understand that this is definitely not the case.

Last year, things were very busy during a month when a pandemic broke out. He said: “Sales and new listings were surprisingly normal in March 2020 (before falling off a cliff in April). Activity over the past month has been incredibly strong by any measure. “

In fact, March 2020 sales were among the strongest on record. “Sales were higher than any previous month, beating the previous May 2016 record by 21%. Listings were the second highest for a month, behind only May 2017. ”For context, May 2017 was the month after Ontario implemented a tax on the sale of homes for non-residents.

GTA home sales on new listings

The number of new listings relative to home sales.

Source: TRREB; Better accommodation.

Myth 2: Home prices are rising due to a lack of supply

High house prices are attributed by many due to a shortage of supply. After all, supply and demand are the main price drivers, aren’t they? If you want house prices to go down, it is enough for the supply to exceed the level of demand. Everyone who has taken Econ 101 feels the need to constantly explain this for some reason.

“How to say politely? FALSE, ”says the famous economist who probably doesn’t need you to remind him of what you learned in Econ 101. He found that new listings for homes in the GTA are actually much higher than habit. “New registrations over the past six months are 30% above last year’s levels (ie the pace before the pandemic).”

Price growth induced by supply and demand only works with rational actors. Currently, the market mechanisms are broken due to panic-driven buying. Fear is not fundamental. “The only reason the supply is low is relative to the white-hot demand,” Porter explains.

Before the complaints that Porter was anti-sourcing, he was very supportive of the sourcing. It has been banging on the supply drum over the past decade, particularly in the Greater Toronto Area. He has repeatedly said that the growth in house prices is due to a shortage of supply. This time it’s different.

The economist is join others to say it’s motivated by exuberance. In an exuberant market, it doesn’t matter how much supply appears. He will be overwhelmed by the fear of missing out on price gains or being left out of the market. It’s a panic hoarding frenzy, launched by the Bank of Canada. It’s more like toilet paper accumulation that it is a problem of shortage of supply.

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Education and the dynamics of middle class status https://davidthompsonthings.com/education-and-the-dynamics-of-middle-class-status/ https://davidthompsonthings.com/education-and-the-dynamics-of-middle-class-status/#respond Thu, 08 Apr 2021 02:37:23 +0000 https://davidthompsonthings.com/education-and-the-dynamics-of-middle-class-status/ The economic security of American families is a central concern for policymakers. Benchmarks for economic security include employment, homeownership, retirement savings and security, and financial literacy. These indicators broadly characterize middle-class status, and for many, achieving and sustaining a middle-class life is one of the most important measures of economic success. Indeed, a strong middle […]]]>

The economic security of American families is a central concern for policymakers. Benchmarks for economic security include employment, homeownership, retirement savings and security, and financial literacy. These indicators broadly characterize middle-class status, and for many, achieving and sustaining a middle-class life is one of the most important measures of economic success. Indeed, a strong middle class is both a hallmark of overall economic health and a manifestation of the American dream.

Access to the American middle class was made possible by expand educational attainment during the 20e Century. The role of higher education in economic mobility is well established. Currently, access to post-secondary education opportunities, particularly a four-year college diploma, is more and more considered essential to succeed in an economy that requires advanced analytical skills, ease with computers and better intercultural communication skills. Equity of access to higher education is more questionable, especially during a period of steep increases in tuition costs. Many political interventions, including Pell scholarships and subsidized student loans, have sought to narrow socioeconomic gaps in entering and completing college studies. Nevertheless, equity of access to college and the opportunities it offers is a central concern in political discussions at the crossroads of education and the economy. Colleges and universities are also in turmoil over the COVID-19 pandemic right now, with worrying prospects for equity of access and educational outcomes.

In this report, we present recent historical context relevant to considering the value of post-secondary education in accessing the middle class. We look back over the past 40 years to assess the role that college education has played in the entry and persistence into the middle class for American households. Using data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID) between 1980 and 2017, we study the entry and exit of the middle class, and the role of education as a determinant of middle class stability . We also examine how demographic factors interact with education to predict the entry and exit of the middle class.

To assess how the role of college education as a gateway to middle class status may have changed during this period, we form five cohorts from the PSID. First, we identify all households headed by an adult aged 25 to 64 in 1980. We then assess the role of education and other household attributes as predictors of middle class status in 1980. Then we assess the role of education and other household attributes as predictors of middle class status in 1980. Next , we follow these households for 7 years to determine whether households headed by a university graduate are more likely to maintain their middle class status over time. We then repeat this process with household cohorts starting in 1989, 1999, 2005 and 2011.

We find that the overall stability of the middle class declines over time and that college education does not necessarily against instability within the middle class. As shown in Figure 2, the proportion of middle-class families that remain in the middle class drops from about 62% to 49% (1980 – 1986) during the first 7-year interval of our analysis, and more recently. (2011 – 2017) goes from around 60 percent to 50 percent. This stylized fact is generally valid throughout the 1980s, 1990s and 2000s. It is important to note that some families leave the middle class because their incomes decline and are subsequently below middle class status, while others are experiencing income growth, moving up and out of the middle class.

Households whose head has a college education are more likely to have an income equal to or above that of the middle class, while heads with less than a university degree are increasingly in the bottom quintile of income distribution. And, to the extent that college education guarantees a middle-class lifestyle, it seems to come at the expense of being in the top quintile of the income distribution. For example, in the 2010s, the share of families headed by university who fell outside the middle class rose from 18.6% to 24%. At the same time, a similar share of middle-class families with a college education experience income growth, rising and falling into the top quintile.

The impact of college on obtaining and maintaining middle class status by race of head of household
Household head race
Black Non-black
Probability of belonging to the middle class 0.569 0.618
Impact of college on the probability of belonging to the middle class
In 1980 0.118 * -0.138 *
In 2011 0.086 * -0.105 *
Impact of college on the likelihood of leaving the middle class
Falling
In 1980 -0.033 -0.033
In 2011 0.023 -0.018
While getting up
In 1980 0.096 * -0.01
In 2011 -0.009 a 0.03
* Statistically significant at the 5% level
a. Statistically different from 1980, at the 5% level

Finally, we document the significant differences in the role of college graduation for middle class stability across race. Namely, we find that college education positively predicts middle class status among black households and top quintile status among non-black households. Moreover, while the university level served as a channel for black households to move up and out of the middle class in the 1980s, this upward channel appears to have weakened throughout the 2010s.

Read the full report.

The authors have not received financial support from any company or person for this article or from any company or person with a financial or political interest in this article. The authors are not currently officers, directors, or board members of any organization with a financial or political interest in this article.


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Mental health issues rise in Saginaw as pandemic nears year one https://davidthompsonthings.com/mental-health-issues-rise-in-saginaw-as-pandemic-nears-year-one/ https://davidthompsonthings.com/mental-health-issues-rise-in-saginaw-as-pandemic-nears-year-one/#respond Wed, 07 Apr 2021 23:17:42 +0000 https://davidthompsonthings.com/mental-health-issues-rise-in-saginaw-as-pandemic-nears-year-one/ SAGINAW, MI – Before the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Hattie Norwood, a 32-year-old U.S. Army veteran, community organizer and mother of three, was busy working in a career she loved and raising her school-aged children. And, like many people, she also lived with a mental illness. Then the pandemic changed everything. “Over the years, […]]]>

SAGINAW, MI – Before the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Hattie Norwood, a 32-year-old U.S. Army veteran, community organizer and mother of three, was busy working in a career she loved and raising her school-aged children.

And, like many people, she also lived with a mental illness.

Then the pandemic changed everything.

“Over the years, I have learned a lot of things to help me cope, and the pandemic has only magnified the need,” said Norwood, who suffers from PTSD, anxiety and of depression. “I need and want stability. I like to know what’s coming. Not knowing what is coming is difficult.

Overwhelmed by worry and trying to balance her work as a homeless veterans coordinator with her children’s online schooling, Norwood’s mental health deteriorated. She was afraid of falling ill and passing it on to her children, who do not have health insurance, and felt “unsuitable” as a teacher. She worried about the economy and the racial climate. It all culminated in what she described as an “emotional break” and a week-long hospitalization in May at Battle Creek VA Medical Center. She quit her job soon after.

“It was just heavy like that,” said the Carrollton Township woman. “I want my kids to have the best possible chance, and it’s like the virus is out of our control.”

Norwood is not alone. Mental health professionals in the Saginaw area have seen an increased need for their services since the pandemic began almost a year ago.

“We get a number of referrals per week,” said Twannie L. Gray, full-time therapist and director of Behavioral Health Solutions at Saginaw. “(The pandemic) has caused boredom, loneliness, anger, depression, anxiety, denial and hopelessness.”

Insomnia and the use of harmful substances are also on the rise, said Gray, who has been a mental health professional since 2005. More and more people are seeking advice for the first time, “people who were flying under the skin. radar before the pandemic “. He said he had never seen anything like it in his 16-year career.

“I see people who usually walk around with depressive symptoms, but maybe they felt they weren’t clinically important enough to seek help,” he said.

Even before the pandemic, mental illnesses were common. Nearly one in five American adults lived with mental illness in 2019, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. End of June 2020, approximately three months after the start of the pandemic and the confirmation of Michigan’s first coronavirus cases40% of American adults reported having mental health or substance abuse problems, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Now, an increased need for mental health resources is apparent at the local and state levels.

In central Michigan, the Saginaw County Community Mental Health Authority has responded to an increased need for services by extending its hours of operation. Call 989-797-3400 or visit www.sccmha.org for more information.

The The State of Michigan has launched a hotline for mental health support earlier in the pandemic. Counselors are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to help residents cope with any mental health crisis, including anxiety, financial stress, suicidal thoughts and domestic violence, via text message. In addition, the state’s Stay Well counseling line is available 24 hours a day. If you are experiencing emotional distress due to the COVID-19 pandemic, dial 1-888-535-6136 and press 8 for get free, confidential support from a Michigan Stay Well counselor.

Click here to find more Michigan State mental health resources.

Gray said people are also experiencing more grief and loss now. At the end of February, Michigan was reporting a total of more than 15,000 deaths from COVID-19, and the death toll in the United States was over half a million.

In addition to mourning lost loved ones, “people mourn their past lives.”

“Virtual learning, online meetings was cool for a while, but at the end of the day we have to feel each other’s energy,” Gray said.

Nathalie Menendes is Clinical Director and one of the partners / owners of Saginaw Psychological Services, 2100 Hemmeter Road in Saginaw Township. She has seen more symptoms of anxiety and depression in existing and new patients since the start of the pandemic.

“There has certainly been a trend towards an increased need for mental health services,” she said. “Stressors are multifaceted.

Health issues, financial strain, family conflicts, isolation, changes in school and work routines, substance use disorders and relapses are some of the challenges people have faced. over the past year.

Saginaw Psychological Services offers telehealth appointments and in-person appointments if needed. The more than 50 staff therapists, along with case management teams and recovery coaches, collectively provide several thousand services each month.

“The need has increased across the board,” Menendes said.

Anyone who is worried about their mental health or that of a loved one should watch for: mood swings, crying spells, increased irritability, feelings of hopelessness, suicidal thoughts, panic attacks , increased conflict with loved ones, changes in sleep patterns or appetite, impulsivity and harmful behaviors, and seeking help when needed, she said.

It is also important to nurture relationships with others and to “find the little moments of joy in their day”.

“They have to find ways to connect with others even if it can’t be face to face, so phones, Zoom, FaceTime. It’s really important, ”Menendes said. “Everything about personal care is very, very important now, maybe, more than ever.”

Gray encouraged people to be alert to changes in their energy levels, mood, self-talk, and sleep patterns, and to seek help when needed. Solutions Behavioral Health, located at 1010 N. Niagara St. in Saginaw, offers individual counseling, relationship counseling, family counseling and group counseling. Virtual, telephone and, in some cases, in person appointments are available.

Counseling is one part of the “personal care toolkit,” Gray said. He also recommends that people engage in healthy activities that help them feel better, such as family game nights, watching a favorite movie, eating a favorite meal, exercising, doing yoga and exercising. pray.

“Just be kind to yourself and be kind to others,” he said. “You just have to become more aware of yourself. You know. It is the best start for any healing.

Dismantle the stigma

Like Norwood, 20-year-old Molly Conden-Popielarz suffered from mental illness before the pandemic, and her symptoms were made worse by the disruption of daily life and the stress that followed.

Conden-Popielarz, who suffers from obsessive-compulsive disorder, or OCD, and anxiety, found out that she was pregnant with her first child just before the coronavirus and COVID-19 changed her life. In March 2020, she was fired from her job as a waitress in a restaurant. Eight months later, her son was born.

“I’ve had OCD for about a year and a half now, and I was sort of getting over and over, and then COVID hits and you hear all the experts say to you, ‘Wash you hands wash your hands, ”and it’s just back,” the Carrollton Township woman said. “I constantly wash my hands. My hands are dry and cracked and are bleeding from washing them so much.

Since her baby was born and the weather turned cold, Conden-Popielarz has felt more isolated at home. She no longer socializes with family members and friends in person like she once did, and she has not returned to work because she is worried about leaving her baby with someone else as the threat of COVID-19 persists.

“I was able to do more when I was pregnant, like going out and going, because I could wear a mask for myself and my baby. But now that he’s here, he can’t really wear a mask, ”she said. “I chose to stay home because I would rather not risk making him sick, and my mother is at very high risk.”

All this time at home made her experience symptoms of dissociation, she said. Life is “like a blur”.

“I do the same thing every day. I wake up, I take care of the baby, I stay at home, ”she said. “It’s like constantly repeating the same day over and over again.”

Conden-Popielarz said weekly telehealth therapy helps. Talking helps.

“It’s kinda scary keeping those feelings bottled up,” she said.

Norwood was first diagnosed with PTSD around 2008, but didn’t seek treatment until a few years later.

“I think PTSD stems from my (military) service. I think anxiety and depression have developed over the years with the stigma of PTSD. For years I was ashamed of it and received no help, ”she said. “I kept it to myself and felt ashamed of it until I couldn’t fend for myself.”

Now, says Norwood, she is “overcoming” her mental health issues. His hospitalization at the start of the pandemic helped.

“I am grateful for this short stay. Grateful to be a veteran with the resources that are at our disposal. If it weren’t for the wonderful staff at (Battle Creek VA Medical Center), I don’t know if I would have bounced back so hard, ”she said.

Norwood, a community organizer who has been involved in the Black Lives Matter protests and Proactive community participation, or PCI, who delivered thousands of free meals to children earlier in the pandemic, hopes sharing her story will help others. She said the stigma surrounding mental illness “must be dismantled”.

“It’s good to recognize that you are having difficulty and to get help,” she said. “Just because someone has a mental illness or whatever it is that doesn’t mean they are unable to provide a service or do the job. “

Conden-Popielarz agreed that mental health “must be addressed”. She wants people to know that having a mental illness is not a choice, and she wants people who are struggling to know that they are not alone.

“A lot of people’s lives have changed, and people feel like they are going through it alone, but a lot of people are dealing with the same,” she said.

Conden-Popielarz could not celebrate her pregnancy or the birth of her son as she had hoped, like a baby shower. When she thinks about the future and about post-pandemic life, she wants to make up for it.

“I can’t wait to celebrate my baby with everyone and be able to share it,” she said. “And I am delighted to be back to work.”

She encouraged others to look to the future with optimism.

“Expect better days. It’s not going to be like that forever.

Learn more about MLive:

Mental health issues are on the rise in Michigan families during the pandemic. Here are their stories.

Emotional trauma from pandemic leads Whitmer to seek more funding for mental health

Michigan Launches Mental Health Crisis Text Line For Support During Coronavirus


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