Sunshine is nice, but it’s the people who really shine

You can eat just about any style of food in Concord’s Park ’n Shop Plaza. (Pete Cruz photo)

CONCORD, CA (May 31, 2024) — It’s great to live in Concord for the beautiful weather, something my circle of friends often discusses while sitting in our community garden on a 70-degree bluebird day.

But let us be real, we live here for the people. Diversity, relationships, family, common goals, hard work ethic – and let us not forget the great food.

As I look at this community, it seems Concord is as diverse as any city in this state. In my community garden alone, I have friends who are Bulgarian, Polish, Swedish, Mexican, Russian, Japanese, Filipino, Irish, English, Chinese, Italian, Greek and Portuguese. I am positive I have missed a nationality, and I apologize now.

Some of these folks are recent immigrants. Engagement with these diverse groups brings a lot of friendly conversation and world knowledge, as well as gardening techniques that have improved all our skills.

This also relates to my responsibilities at the chamber, where we engage with individuals of various nationalities worldwide. This includes professionals from South Africa, Morocco, India, Iran, Vietnam, Ukraine, Spain, China, Canada, Afghanistan, Cambodia, Peru, Bolivia and Guatemala. It is amazing, and there are so many more nationalities that the list would fill the page.

Good eating

Check out some of the great cuisine cooked by trained chefs in Concord restaurants such as Swagat Indian Cuisine. (Pete Cruz photo)

Recently, Concord received recognition for Great Suburban Places to Eat, and it is true. Local favorites such as Luna and Papi Clary’s have received press for their hard work and excellent food. You can eat just about any style of food in the Park ’n Shop Plaza. Look around and check out some of the great cuisine cooked by trained chefs as places like Swagat Indian Cuisine – a longtime restaurant downtown across from Brenden Theatres – or go old school and hit up Barney’s Hickory Pit, which is still serving great food in the same place on Clayton Road.

Don’t just eat but engage with the people running the restaurants, and you will find they are the owner, chef, server, accountant and social media pro – amazingly talented, hard-working Concord business folk.

There is absolutely no question I have left out a nationality represented in Concord, and that goes to prove just how diverse Concord is and how much we should be engaging with our population to learn.

My point is to appreciate the weather and celebrate the diversity of Concord. Grab onto it and explore new relationships and learn firsthand from people how they celebrate, work and, most importantly, eat.

Do not forget that when you are eating out, keep it in a Concord zip code so we all can benefit from your spending.

Businesses and organizations interested in learning more about the Greater Concord Chamber of ­Commerce can visit our website

Cabral takes over leadership of Concord Chamber
Kevin Cabral

Kevin Cabral, President/CEO of the Concord Chamber of Commerce, has decades of leadership experience locally, he sits on the Concord Police Chief’s Advisory Committee and is a board member for Community Alliance for the Future a local non-profit organization. Kevin is married with two adult children who live locally in the Bay Area.  A Concord native, Kevin is passionate about giving back to the community where he has lived his entire life.