Coronavirus effects hitting hard for local businesses

WICHITA, Kan. (KAKE) -

Many businesses are struggling, and events postponed or canceled altogether in light of the Coronavirus pandemic, including one of Wichita’s most popular parades that was scheduled to take place Saturday.

It’s a day when the streets of Wichita are normally filled with celebration and green drinks, but Saturday, it was quiet and deserted after the annual St. Patrick’s Day parade was forced to cancel over fears of the Coronavirus.

Danny Ivy and a group of nearly 50 of his friends look forward to the parade every year. 

Rain or shine, they’re determined to still enjoy the holiday.

“We’re a big group of people that have one big belief when you surround yourself around great people, great things happen,” said Ivy. 

The COVID-19 pandemic is also hitting hard for local businesses. 

Janelle King owns Birney’s Snack Shop downtown, and has been forced to start thinking outside the box.

“We find alternate ways to maintain business and sales. You can order and over the phone with us, and we’ll actually do like car side pickup, we’ll run it out to your car, we will deliver within a certain radius to people and do like a front porch drop off,” said King. 

King’s biggest fear, like many business owners, is the uncertainty. 

“The big thing is, you know, you close those doors, I’ve got all hourly employees. If I have no more hours, no hours to give, do I lose my employees? The bigger effect is huge,” said King. 

Some places like the Sedgwick County Zoo are closing completely until further notice. 

AMC Northrock 14 in Wichita is only selling half of their room capacities for movies to promote Social Distancing. 

As the virus continues to progress, Ivy said the most important thing is to stay calm, and take it one day at a time. 

“What happens happens, man, you know what I mean? That’s kind of how we’re gonna live life,” said Ivy. 
 

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