It's not business as usual as Fond du Lac County starts to reopen

Downtown Fond du Lac (WBAY photo)
Downtown Fond du Lac (WBAY photo)(WBAY)
Published: May. 14, 2020 at 4:15 PM CDT
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The first county in our area to see a coronavirus outbreak, Fond du Lac County, is not enacting a local "Safer at Home" order following Wednesday's ruling by the State Supreme Court. Instead, the county public health department rescinded its order, and now businesses there are free to fully reopen. But it's not business a usual in Fond du Lac.

Even with the "Safer at Home" order overturned, over the lunch hour in Fond du Lac, Main Street wasn't buzzing with business. Many storefronts that are now allowed to be open, remain closed. Officials with Envision Greater Fond du Lac, who have been leading a task force to prepare businesses for reopening, aren't surprised.

"I think that still goes back to employers still need to bring employees back, get them trained, get their PPP in order. It's great to see that. I think businesses are really being proactive about having safety measures in place," says Sadie Paradiniuk with Envision Greater Fond du Lac.

Safety for themselves, their employees and their customers seems to be a priority for business owners. Many tell Action 2 News they're not just going to let anyone into their establishments. St. Joseph's Book Room says it's "sorta" open and with "Safer at Home" lifted, it will still limit the number of people inside. And, they'll be required to follow social distancing.

According to owner Dennis Malchow, "If we hear you coughing we're going to either ask you to leave or find a mask, so I think there has to be some common sense involved here."

Annie's Fountain City Cafe, which has seen success with its curbside pick up will continue to do business that way. It's owner saying, she's moved the tables further apart inside and has plans for welcoming customers back -- just not yet.

'We're not quite sure when we're going to officially open, if we're still going to wait until the 26th or we may open next week. I'm just kind of waiting to see what the fallout is from all of the decision made," adds Anne Culver.

Consumers aren't sure they're ready to even go back into businesses that are now allowed to reopen.

"Everything can wait. Everybody is in a hurry, I realize that, usually I"m always in a hurry for everything but not in this case, nope," says Fond du Lac resident Lynn Hundertmark.

And if they do go back, they say they'll take as many precautions as they can. Jolene Schry from Fond du Lac adds, "I will use my mask, even though I go to a small salon and there's just two stylists there, I will still be wearing my mask and taking my hand sanitizer it's like a permanent part of me now."

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