Businesses in Lehigh and Northampton counties can open up a little more, some for the first time, as we move into the green phase of the governor's re-opening plan.
Small business owners in Lehigh Township and Slatington are ready to serve their customers once again while doing it safely.
The green phase allows for the careful reopening of indoor dining, gyms, casinos, and salons. The owner of a local barber shop here in Slatington is happy to open his doors once again after only bringing his business to Lehigh county about three years ago.
"It was really good. We were happy with that. I'm glad to see all the people again. You know what I mean? And then we can start over again." said owner Juan Esteban
Esteban has been growing Master's Barber Shop in town since 2017 and has become a staple on Main Street in Slatington. People were waiting six feet apart with their masks on to finally get a cut. Closing the shop for almost four months was difficult, but Esteban is grateful for the community's support to make today a busy day.
"The rent is still paid. You know what I mean? It was pretty hard. We were still waiting for the government as soon as we opened. It was super hard for us." he said.
Over the river in Northampton County, Salon DeeVine in Lehigh township is ready to bring back loyal clients.
"Lots of overgrown hair. Lots of roots. Lots of tangled hair." owner Deidra Heisler laughed.
Heisler said the restrictions of wearing masks the whole time will be annoying, but the feeling of filling up all her time slots and getting back to what she loves will make it worth while.
"We have clients booked over the next two months just solid." Heisler said, "And everyone is excited to get back. And we're excited to see everybody. And just have that relationship again."
Owners of retail stores like Kushy boutique at Routes 248 and 946 in Danielsville are happy the economy is taking the next step. Stores like Lynn Minnelli's support lots of other businesses, too.
"Not only do you support the store itself, you support over 46 local people within 25 minutes of the store." Minnelli said.
Candles from Palmerton, soaps from Lehighton, and items from all over the immediate region have not been selling. So to make sure Minelli can do her part in keeping COVID-19 away, she's giving out free hand sanitizers with every purchase and cleaning the whole store every night with hospital grade UV lighting.
"It comes on at night. Our whole store glows. It will glow blue," Minnelli said, "So if you're ever going past that's what's happening. It cleanses the whole store."
Even though green means go, we still must support our local businesses with caution. Other states like Texas and Florida are having to close businesses down again after a second wave of COVID-19. If we all do our part, our economy can stay open.