‘We are so grateful:’ Nonessential retail stores reopen at half capacity

Nonessential retail stores can let customers back inside today at 50% capacity, as New Jersey officially enters Stage 2 of its reopening plan.

News 12 Staff

Jun 15, 2020, 3:05 PM

Updated 1,409 days ago

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Nonessential retail resumed Monday at 50% capacity, as New Jersey officially enters Stage 2 of its reopening plan.
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Many of the stores in downtown Cranford were forced to close their doors for the last three months amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Union Avenue is home to dozens of small businesses, from beauty salons and boutiques to other specialty stores, such as Augusta Mae Boutique. Kim Capece and Clara Nunziato are the co-owners of the business.
Mayor Patrick Giblin has watched as business owners and staff have struggled in his township, forced to close by the global pandemic and taking an economic hit.

"They're struggling and they're really important,” says Mayor Giblin. “They employ a lot of people. They have a lot of towns like ours to find the character of it.”

But for the owners of Augusta Mae, something positive did come out of this the last three months --a stronger sense of community.

"The community of Cranford showed up for Augusta Mae, the community of Cranford went out of its way to make sure that they continue to reach out,” says Capece. “They wanted this downtown to be here when this is all over and we are so grateful."
Other businesses in town have installed things such as sneeze guards, social distancing decals, sanitation areas and strict cleaning regimens.


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