Downtown Huntsville businesses surviving coronavirus with increase in dine-in customers

Many customers said they feel comfortable dining in because of the precautions businesses are taking.

Posted: Jun 22, 2020 10:44 PM
Updated: Jun 22, 2020 10:45 PM

Restaurants and bars in downtown Huntsville say more and more customers are venturing out for a change to sit down, eat and drink. 

The uptick in traffic comes after businesses like these either had to shut down for weeks or only offer curbside service as part of coronavirus restrictions. 

However, you will not find a completely full restaurant or bar. But at Humprey's Bar and Grill, it is seeing more and more customers dine-in each week.

"You know we picked back up, people are going to come back out," Manager Aaliyah James said. "You know we go off our community and everybody's been supporting us very well."

James said it is because the are taking the precautions to make customers feel safe. Each day, the employees have their temperatures taken and customers are seated at least 6-feet apart. 

"We're doing really good at social distancing and all our employees wearing masks, washing our hands, sanitizing tables," James said.

A few blocks down and around the corner, Green Bus Brewing is also starting to see business pick up. However, it is still not quite the same as before coronavirus.

"We still have a lot of customers who were regulars prior to covid that were not seeing," Co-owner Carey Huff said. "We have a lot of customers that used to come sit with us that come and get growlers to go."

Huff said they are making enough to pay the bills and keep all their employees, but not making profit.

"We've weathered well to this point, you know we'll be able to maintain this level of business indefinitely," Huff said. "We won't see any growth, and Jason and I wouldn't be able to see any salary."

Huff's business is also taking as many precautions as it can, with employees wearing masks, cleaning often, and spreading out seating.

"When we're closing every night, we wipe the whole place with Clorox," Huff said.

While it is still a risk to be out and about during this pandemic, people are taking the chance to support local businesses.

"Because these are people with families, they have bills to pay themselves," One Humprey's customer said.

Huff said he believes downtown businesses will continue to survive because there is a lot of foot traffic, and outdoor seating options.

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