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'Excited and anxious' Some Triad businesses prepare to open while others wait

Businesses like hair and nail salons will start opening tomorrow. Others like bowling alleys wonder why they can't.

GREENSBORO, N.C. — Soon you may be sitting down for a restaurant dinner for the first time in a while or getting a much needed hair cut.

Phase 2 of the state's reopening plan starts Friday and some businesses are getting ready. Others will have to wait.

"It kind of surprised me when I heard we are going to have to wait another 4 to 5 weeks," said Steve Mendek, manager of Countryside Lanes in Kernersville.

Bowling alleys like his were originally supposed to open under Phase 2 but the Governor announced different plans.

"Its going to be tough these next four or five weeks but we will try to hang on as best we can," said Mendek.

Even for restaurants and salons all the guidelines for cleaning and social distancing aren't easy to get into place quickly.

"You have to leave space between customer [appointments]," said hair stylist Yolanda Lester as she organized her first appointments.

She said she is waiting until Saturday to welcome them back to Splendor Hair Salon in High Point.

Ravi Khanna owns Elm Street Grill in Greensboro. He said it's more than setting tables further apart. 

It means putting down social distancing stickers and putting together new cleanable menus.

"We are struggling in terms of time whether we can make it to open up tomorrow," said Khanna.

He's also having trouble getting his employees to give up their unemployment benefits.

"Everybody has got unemployment and along with [it] they are getting bonuses in terms of 600 dollars every week," said Khanna, "When they come back to work it's very hard for them to make that kind of money."

Still, restaurant and salon owners said they feel lucky to face these new challenges.

"The bills keep piling up and I feel so sorry for those businesses that haven't been able to open," said Lester.

For some of those businesses like performance venues, beginning Phase 2 means they are one step closer even if audiences won't be back for weeks.

Carolina Theatre Executive Director Brian Gray said he didn't think it was likely that they would be allowed to open until June or July.

"We have ample time to get our plans ready," said Gray.

Businesses that are reopening Friday at 5 p.m. ask customers to be patient as they adjust.

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