COVID 19 Challenge by Gilroy Downtown Business Association

They say, “when it rains it pours.” The small town of Gilroy, located at the Southern end of Santa Clara County, has experienced its fair share of hard times. In 1989, the Loma-Prieta earthquake severely damaged the iconic Old City Hall in downtown Gilroy at a time when it suffered from a period of disinvestment because of the growth of auto centric suburban shopping centers in the city, City leaders decided it would be best to demolish the building. The community rallied, and the building was saved. In 2005, downtown Paso Robles experienced an earthquake that killed two. In response, the City of Gilroy prohibited occupancy of 25 unreinforced buildings in the downtown core creating blighted conditions. Today, after millions of dollars of private investment by property owners, only 2 unreinforced buildings remain. Property owners repaired rather than demolished. In 2008, Gilroy like the rest of America experienced the “great recession” and housing meltdown. Gilroy residents saw the value of their homes plummet by 46%, one of the largest decreases in Santa Clara County. The City and its residents recovered. In 2017, after record rains Gilroy’s Uvas Creek swelled and threatened to flood the city as much of the South County was submersed in water. The rains stopped and Uvas Creek receded, and the city was spared. In 2019, Gilroy’s premier event, the Gilroy Garlic Festival experienced a mass shooting on the 41st year of the event. The Gilroy community rallied and raised nearly $2M to aid families and individuals that were affected by this tragedy. In March 2020, the Corona Virus shut down both small and large businesses in Gilroy and resulted in the first ever cancelation of the Gilroy Garlic Festival as well as all the downtown association’s events. The Gilroy community rallied, supporting small local businesses directly and by purchasing gift cards through the Downtown Association website. No restaurants have closed. While the Downtown Association has been actively involved in responding to the needs of downtown merchants, there was only so much we could do because of the government stay-at-home and social distancing mandates. In times of loss and angst, it is human nature to gather and provide comfort to each other. As an organization, the downtown association promotes and builds community. We gather to celebrate and at times we gather to mourn as we did after the Gilroy Garlic Festival mass shooting when the downtown association organized a community vigil in downtown that drew thousands and raised nearly $60,000 selling Gilroy Strong T-shirts and showing the world the strength and resiliency of our community. This time because of the stay-in-place requirements to fight the Covid-19 pandemic, our downtown couldn’t facilitate the natural desire of our community’s need to gather and comfort each other. Instead we used our short video to send our message of hope and comfort and a reminder that no matter what the crisis, we have always surmounted them. Our video producer, 152 West Productions expertly delivered that message. Our short video was posted to our Facebook page on May 4th, 2020. It has been viewed 5,300 hundred times and had a total reach of 12,400 people. Our on-line poll showed that 85% of the viewers indicated that the video made them feel “more hopeful”. The City of Gilroy is the only city in Santa Clara County that is not physically touched by another city. Gilroy is indeed a special place. Anyone who has ever visited, knows that life is a little slower our people are giving, friendly, and our sense of community is strong. Respectively Submitted, The Gilroy Downtown Business Association


The Above video is one of the entries from “In Time of COVID19 Video & Essay Contest”

We believe that the pandemic has generated a treasure trove of interesting stories, valuable and relevant contents about humanity in all its spectrums. Stories about generosity, heroism, kindness and outstanding services to fellow human beings on the other.

Ding Ding TV (Silicon Valley Innovation Channel and Voice of Asian Americans) , CLUSA  together with 16 partners presented “In Time of COVID19 Video & Essay Contest” bringing these stories to our community and simultaneously acknowledge and honor their creators.

The contestant should read and follow the Contest Rulers published on May 10th 2020 from following link:


The contestant acknowledge Rule 5, 6

5)    If background music and other visual, verbal and sound (reference) material are used from internet, the contestant must possess copyrights or have explicit permission to use such  material(s).

6)    By entering this contest, the contestants will have given DingDingTV and Contest Partners explicit permission to distribute the video widely on media channels, the internet and social media sites such as Youtube, Facebook, WhatApp, WeChat, twitter….etc. 

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