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Businesses closed on Mondays push some visitors away - Greenville, NC | News | Weather | Sports - WNCT.com

Businesses closed on Mondays push some visitors away

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WASHINGTON, N.C. - The small business initiative is in towns across Eastern North Carolina, yet some consumers say they can't shop or patronize those businesses because they're not open enough days during the week.

About a dozen stores and restaurants in Washington aren’t open on Mondays, and it’s not because of the Easter holiday weekend.

Some folks in town are worried that closed up shops on Mondays are pushing visitors away.

“Unfortunately, some stores are closed the same day I’m off too,” said Sandra Andrews.

Andrews is visiting Washington for the day from Belhaven with her two granddaughters who live in Fort Bragg. What they wanted to be a shopping and lunch outing was cut short.

“I'm guessing it's the cost of people to work the extra days of the week that the owner doesn't want to."

In a survey about general needs put out by the City of Washington, one response says more businesses need to be open on Monday for weekend visitors, yet City officials say there's not much they can to when it comes to hours of private businesses.

"We would certainly encourage them to be open when there is need and they have to look at that,” said City Manager, Brian Alligood. “Obviously small businesses are still struggling. We hope that people are supporting them and we want to support them anyway we can as well."

Executive director of the Washington Harbor District Alliance, Beth Byrd, says it’s her mission to improve the downtown business district, but asking businesses to be open every day isn’t the answer.

"It’s just the nature of having a small business, said Byrd. “They don't have all the staff so they can remain open throughout every day during the week."

Even though some weekdays, no one walks through the door of Schmitt’s Jewelry and Gifts, small business owner Roddy Schmitt says it’s the fact that he’s here for his customers who often travel hours.

"Pitt County, Beaufort, Hyde, Dare, Martin County so I have them coming from all over," said Schmitt.

That’s why he chooses to close only on holidays and Sundays. For Andrews, who works in the restaurant business, she knows how important it is to have a day off. Yet, she wishes shops and stores could expand their hours at least for the spring and summer months.

"There are tourists here,” said Schmitt. “They need places to go, places to see and places to eat. So they need to be open those days."

Even though folks in the city say they'd love for businesses to be open seven-days a week, they understand it's a lot to ask and business owners say it's just not possible.

They say Washington is a small business town and small businesses just can't be fully staffed six or seven days a week.

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