AZUSA (CBSLA) — A number of businesses took a financial hit this year with the Rose Parade canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic, including the owner of Artistic Entertainment Services in Azusa who had to think outside the box to keep his business afloat.
“These are typical Rose Parade chassis we would use to the Tournament of Roses parade, obviously it was canceled this year,” Craig Beugajski said as he walked past the metal frames sitting unused in his business’ construction yard.
“Disney, ESPN, Dodgers, Honda last year,” he said, recalling some of his largest clients. “Jack-in-the-Box, China Airlines.”
But it’s not just the annual Pasadena parade that was canceled.
“We were doing a lot of show sets for the upcoming festivals, Coachella and Stagecoach,” Beugajski said. “Those got canceled, and then, of course, slowly the Rose Parade got canceled.”
So, in order to keep his company from going under as a result of the pandemic, Beugajski had to think outside of the box.
“We’ve built these different what I call living spaces,” he said. “So, there’s these little living spaces that we can put in people’s backyards for schooling or for offices or maybe yoga workouts.”
The 120-square-foot mini houses come equipped with electrical hookups, air conditioning and heating.
“We just thought that, you know, with people being crowded at home and families living on top of each other through this whole thing, having some extra space is something that is needed,” Beugajski said.
Before the pandemic, Beugajski had about 250 employees working out of his Azusa workshop. That number dropped down to a low of 14, though he has since been able to hire back a few more due to demand for the living spaces.
“Obviously looking forward to the vaccine and getting back to work and entertainment starting back up and hopefully getting to some sort of normal,” he said.