TYLER, Texas (KETK) – Some stores are preparing to open for business on Friday following Gov. Abbott’s announcement Monday to expire Texas’ stay-at-home order.
Papacita’s in Tyler spans over three generations and has been in Tyler for many years.
“Everybody knows everybody, everybody knows my parents and a lot of them know my grandfather, it’s just very family oriented,” said Mara Davidson, owner of Papacita’s.
For the first time in 50 years, the family restaurant has been forced to close its doors to the public.
“We have a lot of regulars that are in here 4 or 5 times a week, so for us to completely shut our doors was just a shocker for everyone,” she said.
While drive-thru and pick-up is available, Davidson said business and sales aren’t the same.
“On a great busy day, our sales might be close to 50% of what we had before, but normally it’s about a third,” she said.
But that will change on Friday after Gov. Abbott announced restaurants can open to the public but only to 25% capacity. Experts say the decision comes at a great time after an economic hardship.
“This is the worst economic disaster that we have ever seen in our lifetime, so it’s critical that we open back up, send people back to work an start to get us back on the right track,” said Kerri Camp, an assistant professor of marketing at UT Tyler.
Restaurants aren’t the only ones that will be opening their doors though. Malls, movie theaters, museums, and libraries will be welcoming customers once again.
“We are not just going to open up and hope for the best, instead we will put measures in place that will help businesses open while also containing the virus and keeping Texans safe,” said Gov. Abbott on Monday.
He said if there are no spikes in COVID-19 cases then the next wave of businesses could open up as soon as May 18.