The state of North Carolina has been under a stay-at-home order for close to two months. This means that many families have only been allowed to leave their homes for essential items and exercise outside. Due to these state-wide restrictions many local businesses had to shut down.
To navigate these orders local companies tried to find different ways to maintain their business. In addition to selling gift cards online for future use, some businesses have shifted to online and delivery service models.
As COVID-19 continues to take a toll on residents’ everyday lives, the importance of supporting local businesses has become paramount within North Carolina communities. However, Governor Cooper recently announced that on Friday, May 8th the state of North Carolina will be initiating Phase 1 of re-opening. Based on Governor Cooper’s press conference the state of North Carolina will be in Phase 1 for two weeks before graduating to Phase 2.
What does this mean for the communities in North Carolina and how can you continue to support local businesses? During Phase 1 restaurants will not be open, outdoor will also not be available to customers, but restaurants will continue to do delivery and pick-up. A few local businesses that continue to operate with delivery and pick-up are Lilly’s Pizza, Bad Daddy’s Burgers, Sitti, Mami Nora’s and many more places.
During phase one, boutiques and other similar businesses will be able to re-open but will be asked to follow cleaning rules and social distancing measures similar to the ones grocery stores, hardware stores and other essential businesses have been required to follow. These businesses can operate at 50% capacity and grocery stores and hardware stores will move from 20% capacity to 50%. To find your local boutiques and stores to support click here.
Churches will be allowed to conduct services for more than 10 people if these services are held outside and social distancing is followed. State Parks will be re-opening in Phase 1 but playgrounds will remain closed.
It is important to note that although the majority of counties will be following Governor Cooper’s Phase 1 strategy you may reside in a county that is implementing stricter rules. The county’s rules will take precedence.
If Phase 1 is adequately implemented and health officials determine that North Carolina can graduate into Phase 2 then Phase 2 should begin May 22nd, which will give more local businesses the opportunity to open such as Hair Salons and potentially gyms.
As we venture through Phase 1 continue to support your local businesses and buy local as many of these owners are hoping to get back into their normal routines and support their community.