JEFFERSONVILLE, Ind. — Downtown Jeffersonville is trying something new this weekend in hopes of supporting local businesses in the coronavirus pandemic. Starting Friday two blocks on Spring Street will temporarily close to vehicles to offer more space for people to explore and dine outdoors.
"We have a good following and we've been pretty busy but we definitely have not been as busy as we normally are," bartender at The Red Yeti Olivia Deckard said. "Our owners are just really worried about our safety and our guests' safety so we went to throw away menus for everything which I know hasn't been cheap for owners."
The city will provide restaurants tables for more seating.
From 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday downtown will close part of Spring Street from Market to Chestnut and Chestnut to Maple to vehicles and open them to pedestrians.
"We talked about doing this earlier this summer and at that time some of the restaurants were having trouble with staffing," Jeffersonville Mayor Mike Moore said. "A lot of people were collecting unemployment checks and the restaurants were excited about it but a little hesitant all the same."
Moore said he hopes people will take advantage of the warm weather this weekend.
"I think mother nature said 'hey it's been crazy for you already here's the last hoorah' and you know what I'm willing to take it," Harris said.
Harris opened his restaurant, 'That's My Dog' this summer. He said his restaurant has been doing better than expected in a pandemic, but he's looking forward to more foot traffic this weekend.
"Everybody loves a good hot dog and I expect them to come down," Harris said. "This is just a stepping stone towards the right direction and I feel that there will be more."
Mayor Moore says if things go well this weekend the event may continue next year spring and summer.