HARDY, Ark- Memorial Day on the Spring River is one of the area’s biggest holidays, but due to COVID-19 that’s not the case this year.
We spoke with one shop owner to hear about the impact the virus has had on his business.
We also spoke with one visitor to see if people are following social distancing guidelines.
“I actually believe it’s been one of our better Memorial Day weekend than it has been because everybody has been closed up, you know social distancing and all. Everybody was ready for a weekend to get out,” says Spring River Camp and Canoe owner, Rocky McCollum. “The people that we had come out you know it surprised me with how many we did.”
McCollum says he is also sanitizing and cleaning his rental equipment and store multiple times a day.
He says that has required him to bring on more staff to help.
While McCollum says the Memorial Day weekend turnout was much bigger than he expected, but he says it might not be enough to offset the costs from the decline in business he saw before the holiday weekend.
“No, I don’t think it’ll be, I think it’ll be pretty rough all year, says McCollum.”
McCollum says he’s been promoting social distancing at his store and says he didn’t have any problems with customers not following the rules, as some asked him for tips on if they should socially distance on the river.
One visitor says he saw a mix of people social distancing and while others were not.
“Part of the weekend I did see for the most part people were social distancing,” says visitor William White. “I did see some groups of people who were not socially distancing. They could of been more space between them.”
McCollum says he thinks their summer turnout will be determined by if there are any spikes in COVID cases at the spring river area from Memorial Day weekend.