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Thomasville tourism leaders begin to reopen businesses with caution

Posted at 7:25 PM, Apr 27, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-27 19:25:53-04

THOMASVILLE, Ga. (WTXL) — With Georgia given the green light to re-open, how quickly will tourists want to get out of the house and spend money?

Thomasville tourism leaders say they are proceeding with caution, while staying optimistic.

Safety is of course the first priority, as restaurants and businesses are required to practice strict social distancing.

But tourism manager Bonnie Hayes says the city needs the support from visitors to sustain financially.

"Tourism supports over 660 jobs here in the Thomasville and Thomas County area and you can see easily that over 2/3 of those were immediately affected," said Hayes. "And of those 660 jobs, they're not all just working in a hotel. There is a percentage of those that is directly related to retail, restaurants, and things in the hospitality industry."

Business owners ABC 27 spoke with say they're happy to welcome customers back and look forward to a return of some sort of normalcy.

Given the governor's order and the financial need, some say they'd rather wait before opening completely to protect their customers and employees.