JACKSONVILLE, Ore. – Jacksonville’s busy tourism season typically starts picking up this time of year. However, 2020 is no normal year.
“We are trying to survive, we are trying to be sustainable during of all of this,” said Patty Keck who is the owner of Farmhouse Treasures in Downtown Jacksonville.
She’s seen how fire season can cripple the local economy, but she’s never seen anything like this.
“It is absolutely devastating,” said Keck.
Keck’s one of several California St. businesses opening their stores by appointment only.
“There hasn’t been a terrific response, but every little bit does help,” said Keck.
Linda Graham, owner of Scheffel’s Toys is doing the same.
“I knew I could control my little store,” said Graham.
Graham once worked at a hospital, so she’s already planning on how to reopen with safety in mind.
“When I reopen people will have to use Purell. They will be asked to wear their masks, out of concern for my family and for theirs.”
Graham plans to begin selling masks soon. She hopes when shops do reopen people still take the virus seriously by continuing to distance themselves as much as possible.
“We’re not going back to business as usual. Not for a very long time.”
That’s why business owners are already worrying about tourism this summer. The renowned Britt Festival is slated to start in June.
“Without anything… I think it will be devastating for all of us.”
Some Britt Festival performances have been canceled or postponed, but the overall festival is still planned to go on for now.
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