Businesses Respond to COVID-19, Social Distancing
By James McNary
Area businesses have responded to the COVID-19 outbreak in various ways, perhaps most obviously with the closing of restaurant dining rooms while kitchens remain open for drive-through, curb-side or carryout service, depending on the restaurant.
For some establishments, such as grocers like SummerFresh in Greenfield and Muncy’s in Lockwood, business has continued largely as normal, or what might pass for such during the emergency. Muncy’s has requested that patrons consider who really needs to do the shopping and that if someone can stay home, they should. Limits are being placed on some items due to short-term issues of availability.
In Greenfield, Stockton Lake Outfitters is operating largely as normal, but some items are hard to get for the time being.
“Our distributor’s warehouse is out of masks, toilet paper, disinfecting wipes, isopropyl alcohol and bleach - that I’m aware,” said Amanda Boyd, owner/manager. “We still have a few packages of RV toilet paper and some bottles a bleach left and are supposed to be getting hand soap and more bleach on Monday.”
Boyd said that the store is offering call ahead service to customers with payment over the phone and curbside pick-up. She also said that they have decided to adjust store hours to 8 a.m. - 4 p.m. Monday-Friday and 8 a.m. - 1 p.m. on Saturdays to help prevent further spreading of COVID-19 as well.
The following are examples of changes in operations other local businesses, it is by no means a comprehensive list.
In Lockwood, the offices at MFA Oil and the MFA, Inc. fertilizer plant are closed to customers, but employees are answering phones and filling orders.
Arvest Bank and Simmons Bank have both closed their lobbies and are offering drive-through services only. Simmons has announced their Lockwood branch will be closing temporarily beginning Wednesday, although their Greenfield branch drive-through will remain open.
The city of Lockwood has closed the lobby of city hall, but the drive-through remains open. Curbside service is being offering by the public library, which also live-streamed their regular story time on Facebook.
Penny White, president of the Lockwood Chamber of Commerce, said that to her knowledge, most businesses along Main Street were still open with regular hours as of Friday (but the situation is changing minute-by-minute), just to keep in mind the social distancing guidance issued by Gov. Mike Parson.
In Greenfield, Red’s Drive-In is continuing operations as normal - obviously.
Twin Dragons, under new ownership, is taking to-go and carryout orders during regular hours, but manager Princess (McCoy) Jeffreys said that could change if the COVID-19 situation gets worse.
That Place on the square remains open for call-in and carryout orders and is offering curb-side delivery.
The Intermission Cafe and Greenfield Print Co. have closed, as has the license office, at least through March 30.
Greenfield Pharmacy has closed their lobby and is requesting customers use their drive-through.
Russell Abstract staff remains in the office, but is doing as much business via telephone or electronically as possible, and the lobby is closed. Scheduled property closings are still taking place, but they ask those having symptoms stay home and reschedule.
The Closet ministry of Liberty Baptist Church near Everton will be closed until classes resume at area schools, however, those in need of gently used clothing can call 417-637-2258 and someone will meet them there, if possible.
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