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Thomasville's Main Street stores get creative for social distancing

Posted: 7:37 PM, Mar 20, 2020
Updated: 2020-03-21 18:09:41-04

THOMASVILLE, Ga. (WTXL) — With the call for social distancing, the City of Thomasville is working to make sure businesses can keep their doors opened.

“The survival of our small businesses is everything, so our small businesses have resorted to a little bit of change in operations," said April Norton, Main Street & Business Development director.

Candence Kidwell, owner of Fuzzy Goat says that entrepreneurs try to figure stuff out, and they have been working non-stop for a current solution.

Businesses have changed the way they conduct business. Some have gone to appointment only shopping, while others offer face-time shopping with curb pickup.

Annie Jones, the owner of The Bookshelf, closed her store to foot traffic.

"We have our door locked," Jones said, "but we are taking appointments, orders over the phone, and we have a great website where people can shop online and we will do free curbside delivery or free shipping in Thomasville and Tallahassee."

Empire Bagel switched to takeout and curbside delivery, and Fuzzy Goat reduced hours.

John Gregory, owner of Empire Bagels, say this is not what he’s used to.

“I’m from a big city, from New York, so it’s a lot different," Gregory said. "I'm not use to having people support you, I'm not used to that. I think it’s bringing a lot of businesses together.”

Gregory also said business owners in the area have taken to social media. When they visit each others stores, they take a picture and post it saying, “I’ve been here.”

He also said that most of these shops are mom and pop restaurants with the support of family and friends.

“These are uncertain times for small businesses, my heart goes out," said Jones. "Thomasville is full of local businesses just like ours where we depend on our businesses for our livelihoods. But, we're having to think creatively and I'm hoping that if we think creatively now, the long-term impact will be lessened. We really want to stay open and to keep serving our Thomasville and Tallahassee communities."