This post is part of an ongoing series of articles featuring our business members and how they’ve been dealing with the COVID-19 health crisis. Please support our Chardon community by shopping locally!
How long have you been in business?
How has your business or organization been impacted by COVID-19? What additional challenges are you facing?
It was extremely stressful to close our doors on March 15th. We were to celebrate 35 years on the square on March 23rd with a store sale, a big party/celebration and open house with prizes. Needless to say it was very disappointing and a huge hit to our business. With the Maple Festival cancelled due to the virus, it dampened our kickoff to Spring and expectations of an uptick to an accelerated business. When it came time to reopen my biggest struggle was the responsibility to protect my 20+ dealers. We range in age from late 40’s to 91 years and definitely in the bull’s eye of the virus. We are an extremely close group of people and The “the Mother Hen” was very concerned for their health and welfare. It came to a point it made me physically sick for several weeks.
What have you done to adapt?
We have ADAPTED! To get ready to reopen, we had all the wall to wall carpets cleaned, steamed, and sanitized. One of my dealers made a Plexiglas structure to cover our 14 ft. counter, our booth that was only 4 ft. apart was replaced by an 8 ft. table (actually 2 4 ft. card tables) . It took a week+ to wash and sanitize all the “high touch” areas on the all 3 floors. I also wrote 2 pages of expected guidelines for opening and maintaining the store throughout the day and distributed to all dealers.Hand sanitizers were hard to find in the beginning but I was able to find and put in locations in the store for customers and dealers. As of May 22nd we have settled into the new routine of sanitizing several times a day. It was very costly to reopen… especially when I decided not to collect rent during the time we were closed, although my mortgage was due each month.
What is something you would like people to know about your business or organization?
Obviously we are committed to Chardon and surrounding community with being on the square for 35 years. Chardon has been extremely good to us, and the community doesn’t have a better cheerleader than 101 Main Street!
How can the local Chardon community help?
You have! Business has been good since we reopened… just keep it up!