SALT LAKE CITY – Business owners across the state breathed a sigh of relief after Governor Gary Herbert announced parts of Utah’s economy could reopen as early as May 1.
Part of that economic reactivation plan included opening gyms and restaurants for dining.
“I feel amazing. It makes me really happy,” said Nick Olsen, owner of X-365 Fitness in Sugar House.
KSL TV was with him as he watched Friday’s press conference where the governor laid out the timeline for reopening parts of Utah’s economy in the “Utah Leads Together 2.0” plan.
“I’m so excited. I want to call everybody. I want to call all our members and trainers and say we are going to open,” said Olsen.
Olsen said he lost about $40,000 in business as a result of shutting down because of COVID-19.
“A huge hit, a huge hit,” he said. “We can’t go much longer being closed. Of course, we are fiscally responsible. But there is only so much saving you can have.”
At Ginger Street restaurant at the corner of 300 South and State Street in Salt Lake City, Michael McHenry was thrilled with the news about restaurants.
“I have to tell you, that’s big news within the past hour,” McHenry said.
Ginger Street is one of three restaurants McHenry owns along the Wasatch Front. He said they’ve lost about 70% in sales across the board.
“I think what’s most exciting about [opening back up] is that there is a plan,” McHenry said. “There is not necessarily an end in sight, but there is actionable direction for us in sight — and that’s massive. To see how we can bring our dining room back to business, it’s going to take some work. It’s going to take some social distancing, switching up some tables, switching up some operations, but finding a way to do that in a very genuine and authentic way.”