Nevada County Sunrise to hold conference, Shop Locally campaign |

Nevada County Sunrise to hold conference, Shop Locally campaign

Sidewalk signage along Mill Street in downtown Grass Valley shows a slice of some of the many local merchants that rely on people to shop locally. The Nevada County Sunrise Movement plans to help support local business and encourage shopping locally in their plans for 2021.
Photo: Elias Funez
A mother and daughter take some time to shop in downtown Grass Valley Wednesday afternoon. The local chapter of the Sunrise Movement is planning on supporting downtown businesses and encouraging more people to shop local.
Photo: Elias Funez

Nevada County Sunrise, a local hub of the nationwide youth environmentalist group Sunrise Movement, will be hosting a Youth Recruitment Conference Feb. 26-28 and a Shop Locally campaign in March.

Nevada County Sunrise Co-coordinator and Ghidotti Early College High School junior Etta Stewart said, “The idea behind this conference was to connect the high schoolers in Nevada County with the programs that are catered toward those high schoolers.”

The conference, which will be held over Zoom, is described on promotional materials as aiming to “challenge and focus the passion of Nevada County high schoolers.”

It will include presentations and Q&A sessions with a variety of local organizations, not only within the activism and sustainability spaces like the Sunrise Movement, but also focusing on skills-based groups in areas including robotics and metal work, athletics, and arts and media.

These groups will each be assigned a time slot to “make their pitch to Nevada County high schoolers” during the three-day conference, according to Stewart.

“People can jump on at any time … for the specific time slots of the people who are interesting to them,” said Stewart. She said additional information on accessing the conference will be shared soon through the Nevada County Sunrise website and social media channels.

Describing the primary aim of Nevada County Sunrise as “working for a livable future,” Stewart said the group will be organizing a Shop Locally campaign to be held in March.

“We are a program dedicated to stopping climate change and also creating green high-wage jobs for Americans, so to us, it’s really important to invest in local infrastructure and local businesses,” she explained.

The group had originally intended to hold this campaign during the winter holiday months, but scheduling at that time proved to be a challenge, so they are currently connecting with local businesses to coordinate participation.

In order to encourage people to shop locally, Nevada County Sunrise plans to operate either a raffle or bingo-card style contest, with entry based on making a purchase at a participating business.

Stewart said prizes will likely be items such as reusable water bottles or clothing displaying the group’s name, which she hopes will also further promote awareness of them within the community.

“We’ll be doing a lot of social media advertising and advertising in our schools about these businesses,” said Stewart on the benefit of this campaign for participating businesses. “The idea is just to get people to spend their money locally.”

Nevada County Sunrise, a hub of the nationwide Sunrise Movement, began with just a few students in September 2019, according to Stewart.

She said participation in their group dropped last year as the pandemic set in, but is rising again. The hub currently consists of around a dozen western Nevada County youth, headed by three co-coordinators, including Stewart as outreach lead.

Victoria Penate is a staff writer for The Union. She can be reached at


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