Salons, barber shops and gyms reopen after second shutdown

Posted at 5:02 PM, Dec 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-14 17:27:48-05

After 24 days, the BAC for Women opened its doors once again following a second state-mandated closure.

"We're very happy to be here because again we've taken every precaution possible for our members to come into a safe environment and stay healthy," said Connie Emerling, Operating Partner at BAC for Women.

During a COVID-19 update on Friday, Governor Cuomo announced gyms and salons could reopen in Orange Zones with weekly testing and reduced capacity.

Although relieved to be open again, Emerling said things have been difficult, and she worries about the implications of another possible shutdown.

"It's tough but you know we're going to make it through it. We're back open again which we're so happy for, and just want to stay open, that's all," she said. "I do think we're essential, you know? I mean people need exercise to feel good and keep their mental focus in a really tough time."

The governor said the state has data showing that nearly 74 percent of the spread of COVID-19 came from household and social gatherings."

Inside the BAC for Women, there's a cleaning bottle on every piece of equipment, capacity has been reduced to 25 percent, and Emerling said they've cut the number of equipment available.

"We've taken every precaution and all the members even say they feel more safe here than they do at a Wegmans or a Walmart going anywhere. So it was hard, it was definitely challenging," she said.

Catherine Gimlin, who owns Salon 716 NY, said she was shut down for almost a month. And since it was around the holiday time, it was pretty difficult.

"We were following everything we were supposed to. And we thought things were going well, we knew the numbers were going up, but we knew that we weren't the ones spreading it," she said.

But Grimlin said she's ready to fit all her clients in just in time for the holidays.

"I love my team and I love all my guests and I just want them to be safe and healthy," said Grimlin.