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NW Indiana Business Owner Hopes to Re-Open Soon as Governor Mulls Modified ‘Stay-at-Home’ Order

NW Indiana Business Owner Hopes to Re-Open Soon as Governor Mulls Modified ‘Stay-at-Home’ Order

Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb is looking at ways to allow some businesses in the state to re-open, that news comes just in time for one Merrillville florist.

Cindy Lopez, who owns the Merrillville Florist and Tea Room, says that she knew she wanted to be involved in her family’s business from a very young age.

“I love all things beautiful,” she said. “I love the expression flowers bring, and the meaning behind them.” In December, Lopez’s dream finally came true, as she and her husband became the business’ owners. Things were going smoothly until Indiana issued a “stay-at-home” order in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and since then Lopez has worked hard to keep her business afloat.

“We closed the gift shop to the public and limited customer contact,” she said. “We’re still doing curbside pick-up. We have had a lot of calls about when our re-opening date is going to be.”

That date could come in the near future, as Holcomb has begun to make modifications to the state’s “stay-at-home” order, which runs until May 1.

“We’re receiving a lot of input and recommendations on how to do business in the future,” he said.

Holcomb says the number of new cases and deaths reported in the state will help to drive his decisions forward as the state nears the May 1 conclusion of the current stay-at-home order.

In the meantime, Lopez and other business owners say they are trusting the state government to make the right decision as they look to keep their customers and staff safe during the pandemic.

“We are really putting our trust in health officials and the government of Indiana,” she said. “We’re going to abide by their stance on when we should re-open, for the safety of our staff and our customers.”

Lopez says that her shop will still adhere to social distancing guidelines even when the state allows their business to re-open. They plan to open their tea room with tables pushed at least six feet apart, and they plan to make other changes to keep everyone safe amid challenging times.

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