economy reopening | Michigan Radio
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economy reopening

GM towers
Elishia Jayye / Unsplash

Today on Stateside, what big funders and foundations can do to make sure arts groups are welcoming to everyone. Plus, an update on how the auto industry is faring during the pandemic.

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Listen to the full show above or find individual segments below.

The COVID-19 pandemic has proved challenging for restaurants, with operators struggling to navigate continuously shifting questions about staff support, finances, safety, and retooling to meet consumer needs. A restaurant’s return to patio or indoor service might look different depending on its business model, and for fine dining, where the high-end menu is just one part of the overall experience, the path to reopening is uniquely complex.

rollercoaster at Cedar Point
Coasterman1234 / Creative Commons http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Ah, to spend a hot summer day at the theme park. Roller coasters, funnel cakes and… face masks? For Cedar Point, an Ohio amusement park long beloved by Michiganders, that’s a hard yes—starting this weekend.

Band members standing on stage
Mark Samano

Many clubs and bars opened last weekend since stay-at-home orders have gone into effect, and musicians are eager to return to work and play for an audience. One of the venues to open last weekend for the first time was The Blind Pig in Ann Arbor.

The Blind Pig reduced its occupancy to 100 people, giving concert-goers more room in the small space. Masks are also required for entry.

On stage at the club last weekend was Sabbatical Bob, a local funk band.

Paulette Parker / Michigan Radio

As retail businesses re-open throughout Michigan, small business owners are being asked to walk a fine line:  Attracting as many customers as they can, while also enforcing new state and local rules meant to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

We talked to two small business owners about how they’re navigating this new world. We also spoke to a number of grocery store workers from across the state, all of them union members in UFCW Local 951. 

Here’s what they had to say.

people gathered around a campfire
Unsplash

Some parents and guardians staring down the prospect of a long summer with young kids cooped up at home are breathing a sigh of relief. When Governor Gretchen Whitmer lifted the COVID-19 stay home order, she loosened the restrictions on many businesses and programs. That includes children’s day camps, which will be allowed to reopen starting June 8.

A bearded man with a mask on holding a tooth brush in front of his face
Tyler Scott

Debra Hibbeln and her partner found ways to get by when their Dental practice was closed because of the pandemic. Now they’ve re-hired their employees, and spent a lot of time and money putting new equipment and safety measures in place.  

But instead of re-opening as soon as they can on Friday, they’re taking things slow. A lot has changed after all.

elderly care giver
Pixabay

Today on Stateside, as Northern Michigan and the UP reopened restaurants this past weekend, other businesses stayed closed. We speak with a hair stylist who wants to find a safe way to reopen. Plus, the difficulty of tracking the number of COVID-19 cases in elder care facilities.

an empty row of tables at a restaurant
Andrew Seaman / Unsplash

Today on Stateside, restaurants in the Upper Peninsula and the northern Lower Peninsula were allowed to open for sit down dining. We spoke with two restaurateurs; one who opened and one who stuck to take-out orders. Plus, how one high school senior is preparing for his future amid uncertainty.

Courtesy of the State Theatre and Bijou by the Bay in Traverse City

After being shut down for nearly two months, restaurants in the Upper Peninsula and Northern Michigan received permission from the governor to allow sit-down dining at limited capacity just in time for Memorial Day. Some welcomed the flood of tourists for the busy holiday weekend, but others erred on the side of caution and are sticking to takeout-only service for a while longer.

Mike Duggan
detroitmi.gov

Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan said he’s excited that some Michigan retail businesses will be able to re-open on Tuesday, but warns the city will be vigilant about enforcing health and safety standards meant to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer laid out those rules in an executive order that allows businesses “engaged in the selling of goods and the rendering of services incidental to the sale of the goods” to re-open. Sit-down restaurants, bars, gyms and fitness centers, and salons remain closed for now.

Steve Carmody / Michigan Radio

Today on Stateside, University of Michigan president Mark Schlissel talks about plans to restart on-campus instruction in the fall. Plus, an epidemiologist's advice for navigating reopened public spaces.

(Subscribe to Stateside on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, or with this RSS link)

Listen to the full show above or find individual segments below.

A red bridge flooded in Midland
Jodi Westrick / Michigan Radio

Today on Stateside, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announces loosened restrictions on some Michigan businesses and small gatherings just in time for the holiday weekend. Plus, we'll hear about the environmental threats posed by massive flooding in Midland County this week. 

City of Detroit

Starting Wednesday, any Detroit resident will be able to make an appointment to get tested for COVID-19.

Previously, free testing in Detroit was restricted to people with a doctor’s note, symptoms, essential workers and people over the age of 60.

Congresswoman Debbie Dingell
Atlantic Council / Flickr - http://j.mp/1SPGCl0

Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced on Thursday that Michigan factories will soon be allowed to resume operations. This is good news for the thousands of auto workers who will now be brought back on the line. But as we've heard this week, it's not a simple process. There are two equally critical aspects of reopening the economy—public health and financial stability.