It was standing-room-only in the city council chamber last week as Pleasanton city officials shined a spotlight on local business.
During a two-part ceremony, City Council members handed out dozens of awards to Pleasanton-based businesses -- large and small -- celebrating milestone anniversaries this year, as well as presented a proclamation declaring Nov. 26 as Small Business Saturday in the city.
"Small Business Saturday is a day for everyone -- from the business owners who create jobs to the customers who buy locally -- to support small businesses that invigorate the economy and keep communities thriving," Councilman Arne Olson said in reading the proclamation aloud during the regular council meeting Nov. 7.
Landing amid the oft-frenzied shopping weekend post-Thanksgiving, after Black Friday and before Cyber Monday, Small Business Saturday is a national effort designed to encourage residents spend a day supporting small community retailers, restaurants and services with their consumer dollars.
Small businesses, with between one and 150 employees, make up more than half of all licensed businesses in Pleasanton, according to city officials. In all, the city has 3,555 small business proprietors that combine to employ more than 32,000 people.
"The city of Pleasanton supports these businesses as a critical component of restoring and rebuilding a healthy economy, as the perseverance, hard work and resourcefulness of small business owners form the foundation of our prosperity and success," the council's proclamation stated.
As part of that support, the council spent nearly a half-hour honoring businesses in town that have marked a milestone anniversary in 2017.
There are 224 businesses on the list, celebrating 15, 20, 25, 30, 40 or 50 years in operation. Highest on the list, with a half-century in Pleasanton, are Pleasanton Glass Company and Norm's Barber Shop.
The honorees span the business spectrum, from large corporations like Cisco Systems, Inc. and Safeway, Inc. (15 years) to recognizable brands like McDonald's (15), JC Penney Home Store and Hopyard Shell (25 each) and three Starbucks stores (two at 15, one at 20) to small eateries such as Dean's Cafe (25), Blue Agave Club (20) and Heritage Donuts (15).
There are also religious facilities led by St. Clare's Episcopal Church (40), nonprofits such as Child Care Links (25) and personal services like Crown Trophy (15) and Vice Mayor Jerry Pentin's business Spring Street Studios HD (25).
Pleasanton Glass and St. Clare's Episcopal were among the nearly 40 operations whose representatives were recognized during the ceremony after accepting the city's invitation.
The recipients were presented with a token of recognition from the city, a framed certificate for 15 years or a plaque of escalating size and design for the others culminating in a plaque engraved with a ceremonial key to the city for the 50-year honorees.
The other businesses recognized during the council ceremony were:
* 30 years: Avis Rent a Car System LLC, Bay East Association of Realtors, Behavioral Health Quest, Elise J. Daggs DDS, First American Title, Helen's Hair Design and Olde Towne Antiques Mall.
* 25 years: 1st United Credit Union, A&M Printing, Alberto's Cantina, Assistance League of the Amador Valley, Blinds Shades Shutters & More, Buffi Painting, Flip 2 Media, Genex Services LLC, Hall Bishop & Hall LLP, JCL Print Associates, Leisure Sports Inc., Mackay & Somps Civil Engineers Inc., Patelco Credit Union, Susan E. Shanker Marriage & Family Therapist and UNCLE Credit Union.
* 20 years: Body Balance Fitness & Massage Inc., Home Trust Mortgage Corp., In-N-Out Burger, Rad Law Group, S&G Carpet and More and Sudha Chinta DDS.
* 15 years: 4Leaf Inc., American Property Management Corp., Feifers, Pleasanton Community Counseling Center, Premier Dental Care, Studio Seven Arts, Tri-Valley Woodcarvers Chapter 5 and the Women's Golf Association of Northern California.
A full list of 2017 business anniversaries is available on the city website.