Local businesses Close doors for family, community safety
Stores waiting until COVID-19 is gone
The ongoing crisis of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) has started to impact local businesses, even though there are no confirmed cases in Lawrence or Barry counties at this time.
Sabrina Presley, owner of The Tangled Spur in Pierce City, closed her shop’s doors temporarily last week, as other business owners consider doing the same.
“We have been open one year this month,” Presley said. “We’ve seen a steady increase every month we have been in operation. We have had a very good mix of repeat and new customers, and we are grateful for all of them.”
And then, coronavirus struck, starting in China and spreading worldwide in just a matter of weeks.
“Unfortunately, we saw a sudden decline in business as people were gearing up to stay at home,” she said. “Although we have always had a combined presence of both storefront and internet sales, having to shutter the store was a difficult decision to make.”
Depending solely on internet sales will generate only about 25 percent of what the brick and mortar business provides for her family’s income.
“That won’t maintain us for long,” she said. “Unfortunately, the delayed deliveries from our wholesale providers have also impacted us deeply, as they have either shut down production or not operating at full capacity.”
Although the business only has two employees, Presley and her son, closing is sure to have a long-term effect on their finances and peace of mind.
“We took our time and weighed our options to figure out what was best for our family and community,” Presley said. “Because, after all, people should always come first. My husband was recently diagnosed with stage four colon cancer, so it is imperative for us practice as much social distancing as possible at this point. It has impacted us financially, but we know it’s only temporary and pray to make a full recovery after this clears.”
Another vintage market, The Rusty Rabbit and Emmett’s Emporium, also in Pierce City, has opted to temporarily close.
“Joni [Weatherly] and I have talked, and we know purchasing clothing and home decor isn’t a top concern on [our customers’] lists right now,” said Susie Gasser, co-owner, via a Facebook post. “We have made the decision to close the store at this time until the virus situation is safe for our customer base to get out and shop.”
While the store is closed, customers wishing to purchase a specialty item can call 417-489-3836. Further announcements will be made on the market’s Facebook page, The Rusty Rabbit.
“Keep in mind we have coffee, bread, brownie mix, seasonings and vanilla,” Gasser said.
Neither Presley or Gasser have set target dates for reopening their stores.
“I intend to reopen as soon as we are in the clear,” Presley said.
For more information, visit The Tangled Spur on Facebook or call 417-669-6071.