Get a bonus with gift cards to Oakland small businesses

The Oakland Business Improvement District (OBID) is making a push to sell 3,000 gift cards this winter to help Oakland small businesses.

The Shop2Help Oakland Gift Card Program, which launched in early October, offers a 40 percent bonus incentive. For instance, spend $25 and get a $35 gift card at the 20 participating Oakland businesses. 

Popular eateries Fuel and Fuddle, CHiKN, Milk Shake Factory, Stack’d Burgers & Beer, and Pamela’s top the list of the most sought-after gift cards, according to OBID. Other participants include Dave & Andy’s, Prince of India, and Atarashi (formerly Sushi Fuku) and retail shops like Maggie & Stella’s, The Pitt Shop, and University Store. New businesses are being added to the program each month, including Mario’s Oakland Saloon, Jolina’s 2 Mediterranean Cuisine, and Puccini Hair Design most recently added. A complete list can be found at

All proceeds from gift card sales go directly to helping the participating small businesses, which have been hard hit during the pandemic. 

All participating businesses have also agreed to designate a portion of every sale to secure a donation of 25 meals to the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank. “To date, program sales have generated over 15,500 donated meals and counting,” Georgia Petropoulos, OBID executive director, said in a news release.

The program is made possible in part through a $160,000 grant from the Richard King Mellon Foundation awarded to OBID in July 2020 to fund a multi-prong effort to help Oakland businesses negatively impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.