I regularly have the opportunity to walk downtown with my dog. These last several days I have noticed that there are fewer people walking with me, and as I looked into the restaurant windows saw that virtually nobody was there. I began paying attention and realized that in our efforts to socially distance ourselves we are hurting our downtown. The Skidmore students are home for an extended period, conferences in the City Center have been cancelled, and we are staying away from each other and town.
One of the greatest things about being a Saratoga resident is the access to the unique stores and restaurants downtown. They are small businesses being crushed by forces outside of their control but I think we have the opportunity to help them out. We can order a meal or two from our favorite restaurants for pick up, or even purchase a gift card for future use. Spring seems to be bearing down on us and perhaps you could use some new clothes so think about buying a gift card from one of the boutiques in town if you don’t feel comfortable shopping in person. If we are careful we can continue to shop in town, I know that the salespeople would love to have someone to talk to and you might enjoy the fact that they have the time to really help you.
Downtown is one of the things that makes this place so special and the business owners do so much to make Saratoga a welcoming place for everyone. We can show them that we appreciate all that they do by spending a bit of money right now when they need it most. Who knows when this will pass, and if we don’t step up now recovering from this may not be possible. I know that sounds dire but for small businesses it is.
- Elizabeth Whitman, Saratoga Springs