Copper Bar, other businesses temporarily closing as stay-at-home orders continue

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TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) — The Indiana Chamber is calling on Congress to approve more money for small business emergency loans. On Thursday, it was announced that the $350 billion program ran out of money.

The funds were to be used to support business owners who have had to close their doors or layoff workers.

In the Wabash Valley, some businesses are making tough calls on whether or not they should stay open, even with limited services.

The Copper Bar in Downtown Terre Haute re-opened just a month before COVID-19 stay-at-home orders.

“We were really doing well there that first month we opened and then the pandemic hit. It just kind of threw a wrench in the flow of how we were going,” said Cooper Bar General Manager Nick Zwerner.

Ceci Spoonmore and her co-owner had just opened Bliss Bridal Boutique on Wabash Avenue around the same time.

“For us to have to slow down to a halt just as we were starting to build momentum, I’m not going to lie, it’s been absolutely heartbreaking,” Spoonmore said.

Both places have closed their doors for the time being.

“We really did notice a dive in sales and that kind of told us that people were doing their part staying in. So, we thought it would be time to do it ourselves,” Zwerner said.

According to Spoonmore, her business has not seen any clients since the day the Health Department advised that they close up shop.

Although federal money for small businesses isn’t available right now, Kristin Craig, president of the Terre Haute Chamber of Commerce is reminding business owners that other help is out there.

On our COVID-19 resource page, people should be taking a look at and seeing if they’re eligible. if they are these are pretty quick applications,” she said.

For business owners, say they’re using this unforeseen time as a big lesson learned.

“It’s really put into perspective how we want to change our business financially and how we want to pay our employees going forward to where this won’t happen again and they will have that type of protection,” said Spoonmore.

Zwerner said the Copper Bar will re-open in the coming weeks. He said they are paying close attention to directions given by Governor Eric Holcomb.

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