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One of Manteca’s 8 oldest businesses

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Tim Cabral, now the owner of his Mom’s salon, holds a portrait of the late Sadie Cabral.

GLENN KAHL/The Bulletin/

POSTED January 19, 2018 1:27 a.m.

Editor’s note: This is part of an occasional series on the people who have helped build Manteca as the city gets ready to celebrate the 100th anniversary of incorporation this year.

Sadie’s Beauty Salon, in the 500 block of East Yosemite Avenue, is being recognized as part of the City of Manteca’s Centennial Celebration as one of the eight oldest businesses still operating within Manteca.
The business started some 78 years by Sadie Cabral is now owned and operated by her son Tim Cabral.
Like many others, the Cabral Family has made significant contributions to the Manteca community including Sadie’s husband Tony and their other sons Darryl, Dennis, and Joseph.
The Manteca Chamber of Commerce is celebrating those early businesses during the State of the City breakfast on Wednesday Feb, 28, at the Manteca Transit Center on Moffat Boulevard at South Main Street set from 7:30 to 9 a.m. The $15 tickets are available by contacting the chamber at 823.6121.
Sadie’s smile and caring ways for her clientele touched many hearts as she conversed while styling and wash hair. She was always willing to listen to those who needed a shoulder to lean on through the challenges of their everyday life.
Sadie was seen as a one-woman chamber of commerce by the way she treated her customers and welcomed newcomers into her shop and into the community. 
Sadie’s began her cosmetology career at 18 – fresh out of high school – when her mother Michelena Cala bought her an existing shop in the 100 block of North Grant Street across from what is now the MRPS Hall. The shop had small frame house attached to the back where the former owner would continue to live.  It was located right next to the east to west alley that ran between Grant and Lincoln avenues.  Cala ran a boarding house for farm workers on Lupton Street and Sadie cared for her siblings.  Her mother was looking for a way to get out of those demands and thought a beauty shop would be ideal for her daughter.
She had already been doing hair for others while in her junior year in high school. She was joined in the small shop by a close friend and stylist Lillian Johnson Comicia and later followed by Gussie Cabral in 1948 who worked in the salon for 49 years.
Before she died some eight years ago, Sadie recalled her mom coming to her and saying, “I bought you a beauty shop today!”  Sadie said she was shocked and replied, “What did you do that for Mom?  I don’t even know how to cut hair.”  Her mother told her in reply, “You will learn!”
Sadie had said her mother had wanted her to take cosmetology lessons, pushing her into the plan she thought best for her daughter.
“That was the best thing she could have done for me – to buy me a shop.  Afterwards, I really thanked her for it,” she said in a previous interview.  Sadie continued to operate out of that small location for 22 years. While she was single she lived in a small frame house on Lincoln Avenue next to the alley south of the 200 block of East Yosemite Avenue.
Sadie was taught a few hair styling lessons by a beautician who was also a beauty school teacher, a Mrs. Dishas in her mid-30s at the time.  Her first client was long-time friend Rose Richina who was the same age as Sadie and first asked for a wash and set while she usually got a Marcel Wave at another salon. 
She was 30 years old when she married Tony Cabral, the love of her life and five years younger. 
Tim Cabral said his dad worked at Leo’s Grocery Store on the corner of Yosemite Avenue and North Main Street before starting two Courtesy Markets of his own, both having been in the downtown area.  He had met Sadie when delivering groceries to her grandmother Michelena Cala and Sadie was at her home.
“He had a knack for the grocery business – that’s for sure,” Sadie had said. 
Tony Cabral would go on to serve in the U.S. Army in World War II. He was sent to Okinawa, Eniwetok and The Philippines.
Sadie would later buy a second small salon that was located in the El Rey Theater building in the 100 block of East Yosemite and later moved it by a grocery store on the corner of North Main and Center streets where an electrical fire burned out the market and the salon.  She then sold the building to Ed Cardoza who later opened a store of his own at the site. 
Tim said when his parents became involved in the Manteca business community the city had only 2,000 residents and has now grown to some 78,000.  Everyone treated them as family, he noted. Sadie’s became known as the “family salon” where she and her stylists took care of whole families – with men’s haircuts being offered starting in the ‘70s.
It was in 1956 when husband Tony built a strip of stores in the 500 block of East Yosemite Avenue anchored by a state-of-the art salon for his wife and Cliff Parr’s drug store along with Comito’s Jewelry Store.  Both Parr’s Central Drug Store and Comito’s had been located on the southeast corner of Yosemite and Main Street at the downtown intersection.  In 1958 the salon employed six stylists.
The youngest of the four boys, Tim Cabral worked in the salon and helped his dad with supplies after school and on weekends while he was attending St. Anthony’s Catholic School, just blocks away from home.  His high school would take him to St. Pius X Prep School in Sacramento where he graduated from the 12th grade.  He went on to college at Notre Dame in Belmont and earned a Bachelor’s degree in Business that he has used to successfully run the shop helping with the advertising, stocking and dealing with personnel.
Sadie sponsored a Sadie’s Beauty Shop bowling team at Manteca Bowl. She enjoyed creating ceramics and painted china, especially at Christmas time for her friends and to use to decorate the shop.
The other two sons Dennis and Darryl have been busy over the years.  Dennis is in Early Childhood Education teacher in San Francisco.  Darryl had opened four Pro Sports Stores in surrounding cities and is now on line selling those same sports collectibles.  He is also the manager of a senior softball league in Lodi. 
As for the cook in the Cabral family, it was his Dad Tony, Tim said.  He could cook anything, bringing the meat, vegetables and potatoes home from his grocery store and going to work in the kitchen.
Today the shop has some 14 chairs for customers’ hair care appointments with stylists providing every service from highlighting to everything that is in vogue. Tim noted weekly clients come back regularly along with younger and older customers.
“We have third fourth and fifth generation clients,” Tim added.  “We have a lot of fifth generation actually.”
Sharon Alton has been a stylist now for 41 years and is one of the veteran employees. She has retained her youthful appearance since being hired by Sadie.  Daughter-in-law Carla Cabral worked at the shop for 45 years until moving to Idaho a couple years ago where she passed.
Sadie’s clients said when they call for an appointment they just knew she was smiling because they could hear it in her voice when she answered the telephone.

To contact Glenn Kahl, email    

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