Vancouver celebrates Small Business Month in May

April 29, 2024

On Monday, May 6, Vancouver Mayor Anne McEnerny-Ogle will proclaim the month of May “Small Business Month” in Vancouver. The designation coincides with National Small Business Month and National Small Business Week. Also on May 6, City Manager Eric Holmes and regional staff of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) will sign a Strategic Alliance Memorandum. The document publicly illustrates the City’s commitment and partnership with the SBA, working together to meet the needs of the small business community.

“Small businesses represent more than 95 percent of our businesses; they are the heart and soul of our city’s economy,” said Mayor Anne McEnerny-Ogle. “Small Business Month is a time for residents and visitors to affirm and support those in our city who are hard at work to both offer us their exceptional goods and services, as well as to keep their dream of being business owners alive.”

Throughout May, the City and its partners will share ways for the community to support small businesses and promote opportunities for entrepreneurs, startups and existing small businesses to grow and thrive in Vancouver. On Tuesday, May 21 the City, in partnership with Fort Vancouver Regional Libraries, will host Connect and Navigate, a free small business resource fair to connect entrepreneurs and small businesses with local funding and assistance to start, grow and thrive as a business in Vancouver. This event will feature 15 vendors and will take place from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. at Fourth Plain Community Commons, 3101 E. Fourth Plain Blvd., Suite 101.

Follow the hashtag #CouveSmallBiz and visit the City of Vancouver on Facebook (, Instagram (  or Twitter ( to watch, learn and stay informed. 

The City is committed to supporting the growth of its small business community by removing barriers to success and bolstering a thriving local economy through programs such as:

  • Business assistance: The Community Development Block Grant program provided $485,000 in small business assistance for culturally specific workshops, one-on-one specialized business consulting and opened a community commercial kitchen for food-related businesses in 2023. The City will provide an estimated $400,000 for additional business assistance this year.
  • Procurement – Doing Business with the City: A program that publicly advertises bid opportunities offering businesses the opportunity to fulfill the City’s needs for goods, services, construction/public improvement projects, and professional/technical assistance. An interactive website invites businesses to submit bids, quotes, and proposals competitively. This service offers businesses a unique solution to filling their project pipelines, adding to their expanded growth and sales.
  • Restaurant Start-Up Guide: A simple eight-step guide detailing what permits, licensing, plans and inspections are needed before opening a restaurant within City limits. A useful tool that expedites the research, learning and discovery process for restaurateurs.
  • Economic development: The City prioritizes the success and retention of small, local businesses as part of all key development and redevelopment projects taking place across Vancouver, including Waterfront Gateway, the Heights District, Main Street Promise and Fourth Plain for All investment strategy.

Explore more services, business education and grants, low-cost loans and other business funding options through the City’s Business Resources page.

Media contact: Tim Becker, Strategic Communications Manager,