Chamber Update

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Please welcome our newest members to the chamber: Ken Rimorin of PC Repair/Severna Park; Jackie Shea, Realtor at Team Shea and RE/MAX Executive; Brittany Billings of Consolidated Insurance + Risk Management; Jeff Kirby of Superior Softwash; and Joe Natoli of JPAR Maryland.

Maryland continues to move further along in the second stage of the state’s reopening plan as we see salons, martial arts and fitness studios, bowling allies and casinos carefully opening for business. We are overjoyed to see the local economy picking up, albeit very slowly.

I can say that from the chamber perspective, not a single business that we know is taking a cavalier approach with the sanitation and safety protocols. Salons, massage professionals, spas, martial arts studios, and fitness clubs have always followed strict safety guidelines under health department mandates to prevent opportunistic viruses and infections. Now they are doubling down with shields, masks, atomizers, temperature taking, and more.

Some businesses even performed trial runs of their openings to practice their enhanced sanitation procedures. Others posted videos to take you inside their facilities to see exactly how they planned to keep clients safe from the virus. And while they were anxious to get their businesses up and running again, they would not cut corners that could lead to someone getting sick. As small business owners in the community who also live here, raise their kids here and are invested, they sincerely care about you.

It has been amazing to see businesses, even competitive ones, working together for the greater good of restarting the economy. They share ideas, promote each other, combine products and have formed wonderful partnerships. Ledo Pizza is splitting the cost of the large tent at Park Plaza with The Breakfast Shoppe and Sullivan’s Cove so that people can eat outside. Absolute Party Rental supplied the tent and it helped them because their entire book of business – graduations and weddings – vanished under the COVID crisis.

Businesses have worked hard in extraordinarily little time to create new ways to market their services. Lisa’s Cakepops developed decorating kits for kids of all ages. The Blended Essentials made birthday packages. Fitness studios held online classes, and salons put together at-home hair care kits. Many businesses will keep their e-commerce platforms in place to add another dimension in serving you.

As a result of the shutdown, we have experienced what it is like to not have ready access to our small businesses. To help them regain their momentum, we ask that you please shop local, eat local, give local and support local.

On another note, we are planning to hold our Independence Day parade on Labor Day! The new theme is “Back to Business,” and if you would like to participate, you can find all the paperwork on our website. Let us get our community back to business and celebrate the reopening of our businesses and organizations, our country’s independence, and our workforce. Please join our chamber! Go to www.gspacc.com or contact us at 410-647-3900 or info@gspacc.com for more information.

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