NHL lockout takes toll on small businessesby Laura Yuen, Minnesota Public Radio
ST. PAUL, Minn. — The NHL lockout, now in its 83rd day, continues to distress St. Paul business owners.
It isn't just downtown sports bars near the Xcel Energy Center that are hurting. Miyoko Omori, owner of Sakura sushi restaurant, said Minnesota Wild players appreciate her protein-rich menu. The restaurant has catered to the team in previous seasons.
But not this year. Omori said she has lost about 25 percent of her revenue because of the struggling economy, as well as stalled seasons with both the NHL and the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra. The restaurant has had to cut staff to stay afloat.
"I had 35 employees, now going down to 22," Omori said. "I'm a little worried about this year because hockey wasn't playing, and music wasn't playing — St. Paul chamber."
Omori said she plans to ask counselors partnering with the Small Business Administration for help adjusting her business strategy. She participated in a roundtable discussion with the SBA convened by U.S. Sen Amy Klobuchar and St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman.
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