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Morro Bay Embarcadero stores seeing boost in business over Memorial Day Weekend

Posted at 3:44 PM, May 24, 2020

The unofficial start to summer is in full swing and many people are spending the holiday weekend shopping at our local stores.

After a two month closure, the Shell Shop, like many businesses on the Morro Bay Embarcadero, is back to business.

"We opened our first day on Thursday and it was pretty slow," said Katie Fortman, manager of The Shell Shop. "It's definitely boosted this weekend with a lot of tourists coming in."

Located on the Embarcadero, the Morro Bay staple has completely COVID-19 proofed the store.

"We've got some social distancing signs, some mask signs, we've got the general COVID information out there. We have the Plexiglass. There are some markers for where people can wait," Fortman said.

Shopping baskets are disinfected after each use and plenty of hand sanitizer is available for customer use, but Fortman said not everyone is abiding by the store's requests.

"We're only getting about half the people complying with our request to wear masks," Fortman explained.

Meantime, as people navigate the changes and more businesses start to reopen, the one-way foot traffic sidewalks have more people than weeks before.

"We're all open and ready to do business again," said Cindy Williams, owner of The Rustic Diamond.

Williams also has just a few days of reopening under her belt.

She said six people at most can come inside the doors at one time.

"We're trying to be real careful about how we open because we want to continue to stay open," Williams explained.

"I think people are using the social distancing. We're using a mask when necessary and being very polite with one another," added Pamela Springstun of Arizona.

While it's not a typical Memorial Day Weekend, the shops we talked with say customers are showing their support for small businesses during this ever-evolving time.

"It hasn't been overly crowded but the ones that are here are purchasing," Williams said.

"It's great being back," Fortmad added.

Another safeguard in place is 50% capacity inside the stores.