Barbershops, cafes, other small businesses thrive amid start of Phase 1
BATON ROUGE - After two months of staying indoors to help curb the spread of novel coronavirus, locals who feel they're in dire need of hair cuts, trims, and relaxers are returning to their favorite salons and barbershops.
As a result, many small businesses are reporting an uptick in customers as Louisiana continues to make its way through Phase 1 of the state's reopening.
Webb's Barbershop, a popular spot on Eddie Robinson Sr. Drive, is one such business.
It reopened early Tuesday morning and well before it's 7 a.m. opening time, nearly two dozen customers were already lined up outside, eager for a haircut.
The shop remained busy throughout the morning, even reaching its maximum capacity limit of 25%, which meant some customers had to wait outside.
Another location experiencing a surge in business since Louisiana entered Phase 1 is Simple Joe's Cafe on Government Street.
This week's customer response is a far cry from what the cafe experienced only a few weeks ago.
With the stay-at-home order in effect, a lack of foot traffic forced the owners to temporarily close shop.
But now that Simple Joe's has reopened, like Webb's, the small cafe also reached its maximum occupancy of 25% occupancy, including outdoor seating.
The reopening of local barbershops, beauty salons, and mom and pop eateries seems to have breathed new life into the capital city.
Most residents are happily returning to their favorite shops as they attempt to return to "normal" life.
That said, officials continue to remind the public that the threat of COVID-19 is not completely over.
With this cautious outlook, they've said it's too early to know with absolute certainty when Louisiana will move into Phase 2 of the reopening.
In the meantime, locals are encouraged to continue wearing masks and practicing social distancing while going about their daily routines.
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