Spartanburg retail stores take extra precautions as they reopen


SPARTANBURG, S.C. (WSPA) – With the governor’s announcement to reopen certain retail stores, 7 News learned what that means, logistically, for some local business owners.

“It’s kind of sad, because it’s normally full of life and very vibrant,” business owner Kathy Silverman said.

For the past few weeks, the streets of downtown Spartanburg have been bare. But, on Tuesday, 7 News got a glimpse of what could be the start of getting things back to normal.

“I know not everybody’s excited that retail can open today and there are mixed feelings about it,” Silverman said. “Some people think it’s too soon, some think it’s too delayed.”

Kathy Silverman owns The Local Hiker and Hub City Scoops in downtown Spartanburg.

While her ice cream shop has remained open, she has had to make some adjustments.

“I opted to move a 10-foot table up to the front door, and I opened both front doors and customers can come up,” she said.

She’s lost money in the process and has had to deal with other obstacles as well.

“We’ve had people drive by, yelling out unkind things,” Silverman said. “We’ve had people walking by, harassing customers.”

Because of Governor McMaster’s recent announcement to reopen certain retail stores, Silverman will now get a chance to run her primary business: The Local Hiker.

But she and other nearby business owners told 7 News they are taking every possible precaution.

“The last thing we want, at either business, is to make someone sick or for staff to not have a safe working environment,” Silverman said.

“We’re just hoping that everyone will start coming out, little by little, and build our business back up,” owner of Two Doors Down, Kelly Blackwell, said.

Both business owners told 7 News they’ll continue to regularly sanitize their stores and maintain social distancing, following the governor’s order of no more than five customers per 1,000 square feet.

“I’ve already put some markers out at Hub City Scoops and I’ll do the same thing here [at The Local Hiker], and limit the number of people who are in the store at one time,” Silverman said.

“We’re trying to make sure we only have seven customers maximum in the store,” Blackwell added.

Silverman said both of her businesses will continue call-ahead and curbside pick-up services. She’s also offering private shopping sessions. If you’re interested, you can call and make an appointment.

“I think as long as we do things reasonably and responsibly, things will be fine,” Silverman said.

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