The entire Grand Strand was devastated in March and April by the effects of COVID-19 and the temporary business closures. Tourism ground to a halt across the country due to state-mandated stay-at-home and shelter-in-place orders. Local businesses were required to close or significantly alter their operations for an extended period. More than 45,000 Horry County residents applied for unemployment after being laid-off.
Many of the businesses forced to close were small, locally owned “mom and pop” shops and restaurants. The CARES Act provided some relief, but many business owners held their breath and hoped for the best as they waited for the green light to reopen.
The good news is businesses are reopening across the Grand Strand and locals are starting to return to work. But recovering from such an unprecedented event will take some time and it will require local support. That is why the Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce has launched a local campaign to encourage residents to support these small businesses as they work to recover from their recent financial losses.
The campaign highlights a variety of area businesses from different economic sectors across our community sharing their stories and encouraging residents to stop by soon. We have posted these video messages on our website for you to view as you consider how you can support local business in the coming days and weeks.
The Grand Strand is the perfect place for residents to enjoy all the area has to offer while still maintaining physical distance from crowds. With our 60 miles of beautiful beaches, and outdoor shopping areas and attractions, we are well positioned to recover quickly. But your support of our local business community is needed now to help restore our local economy.
If you want to support local business but still have some safety concerns, there are some things you can do to protect yourself and reduce the risk of exposure. Wearing a face mask when you shop is one of the most recommended steps to protect yourself and others. But also, consider ordering in advance for pick-up to limit the time you spend inside an establishment, or visit during less busy times. Call ahead to find out the safety measures of the business you are planning to visit before you go to ensure you’re comfortable with their protocols. Ultimately, support local in the way that makes you feel most comfortable for your personal situation.
Economic recovery starts at home. Show your love for the beach, and for your friends and neighbors, by shopping, dining and playing locally. Together, we are #GrandStrandStrong.
Sponsorship provides our investors the opportunity for recognition and publicity. For some events, sponsorship will also include tickets to the event, the opportunity to speak to attendees or to distribute promotional items. Check out the Investment and Sponsorship Program and stretch your marketing budget.