Ways to Stay Safe and Support Small Businesses, Each Other

There are a lot of ways to stay safe AND support small businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly the hard-hit restaurants, bars, and breweries, that can no longer serve dine-in customers. Many establishments in Lancaster and greater Fairfield County are getting creative with their offerings and trying new things they hadn’t done before.

Ale House is offering family-style entrees to feed your whole crew. O’Huids Gaelic Pub serves up delicious Irish dishes, draft beer, and tasty cocktails to go. Rockside Winery and Vineyards has Peach Rosé slushies and gourmet pre-made wood-fired pizzas for pick-up. The bonus? They also have lots of great wine!

Downtown Lancaster restaurants now have curbside pickup, with designated parking spots in front of each restaurant. Take advantage of this great perk, courtesy of the city of Lancaster. Or call 740-653-8294 and let the Fun Bus deliver delicious food and drinks right to your door!

There are businesses across Fairfield County ready for orders. So, not only will you have lunch or dinner without the messy kitchen or dipping into quarantine provisions, but you’ll be supporting a very grateful business. Check out this county-wide list of our restaurants, bars cafes, and more, but be sure to visit their websites or call for any changes in service hours and potential specials.

Aside from the food and beverage industry, there are plenty of others struggling to find footing amid so much economic uncertainty. Here are a few ways to help:

Retail: Many shops have voluntarily closed their doors to keep customers safe, but many have online ordering options, either through curbside pick-up or mail delivery. If you need something, consider if a local business can provide it. This includes small or specialty food markets, arts and craft stores, gift and home decor shops.

Is it someone’s birthday tomorrow and you can’t or shouldn’t get out to find something? There are lots of places to hunt for unique gifts in Fairfield County, and many have online shopping options. Try Petals & Possibilities for floral arrangements and gifts; motorcycles, gear, clothing, and accessories from Joe Carson Motor Sales; or clothing and accessories from Rustic Gals Boutique, to name a few.

And, even if there’s nothing you need now, buy a gift card and shop later!

Recreation and attractions: Though most recreational sites and attractions are closed either voluntarily or by mandate, there’s still an opportunity to support these businesses, either through purchasing an annual membership or a gift card for an adventure at a later date. Plus, it will give you something to look forward to when the shutdown is over.

Personal services: Hair and nail appointments, along with other personal services, are being canceled throughout the state due to Gov. Mike Dewine’s most recent mandate Wednesday to close salons, spas, and tattoo parlors. To help out, try purchasing a gift card and perhaps leave the tip you would have left had you been able to keep the appointment.

Community: Aside from patronizing small businesses, there are lots of ways to help each other. Call friends and neighbors, especially the elderly, to check-in. Maybe they’re having trouble getting necessities or maybe they’re just bored and lonely. While no one is encouraged to meet face-to-face, there’s always a phone call or a video chat that can make all the difference.

Remember, we truly are all in this together, even if we are in separate households or businesses.

Your safety and wellbeing remains our top priority. As some hotels, restaurants and attractions continue to operate with adjusted schedules, please call ahead to confirm business hours and event details. If you are vaccinated, masks are optional.