Small businesses in Muskoka are getting a chance to learn how to adapt and embrace the changing times amid COVID-19.

In celebration of Small Business Month in October, Muskoka Small Business Centre is hosting its 15th annual Bridges to Better Business event next week.

This year’s event will be held virtually and it will provide opportunities for businesses to get education and inspiration as well as connect them with around 100 business owners that are expected to attend.

MSBC Managing Business Consultant Terri Plaxton Smith says the theme for this year is For the Health of Your Business, in the Age of Covid-19.

“Health is of the utmost importance in peoples’ minds,’ Plaxton Smith said. “So, what can we do to show people other than the usual stay at home and wash your hands? What can you do for your business that you haven’t had to think about doing before?”

The event will also feature panellists, webinars and keynote speakers who will cover a variety of topics from networking, funding, e-commerce and online marketing.

Plaxton Smith says the way businesses operate has changed amid the pandemic and if they are to thrive – they need to adapt to changes.

“I don’t know a business that hasn’t been impacted by this pandemic and the situation it’s put their businesses in,” she said. “That’s just an overall feeling of helplessness so many people have had and especially have had to learn and cope with.”

Bracebridge Mayor Graydon Smith will be in attendance along with the Bracebridge Chamber of Commerce, Parry Sound Muskoka Community Network, the Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade as well as FED DEV Ontario.

Plaxton Smith adds that despite this year being virtual – it’s important for those in the business community to remember they are not alone.

“Our goal is to have them understand while they’re alone physically – they don’t have to be alone in spirit,” Plaxton Smith said. “There’s a lot of resources out there that are a click away, so, we want people to start connecting again.

The event takes place online through Zoom on October 22, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

To register – head to Eventbrite or call 705-646-9021.