Support local businesses during this time of uncertainity.

Over the course of the past week, life has changed dramatically right before our eyes. Our community that was founded on innovation and hard work faces adversity like we have never experienced in our lifetime. It’s been amazing to see businesses transform within hours and days. Restaurants who were once dine-in only now transformed in carry-out connoisseur, boutique retail now fully functional as an online store, dance and exercise studios offering virtual classes … The list goes on.

The Chillicothe area is strong. We are resilient. Together we will all come out of this stronger, with more compassion and innovation than ever.

During this time please consider doing one or more of the following to support our local economy:

Purchase a gift card online to use at a later date. This will help the business with cash flow (they still have bills to pay despite many of them being temporarily closed). Pick a different business or organization each day and leave them a review on Facebook, Google or Yelp. Engage online with your favorite businesses. Share and comment on their posts. If you have a membership or subscription to a business, continue paying it if you can. Tip your service provider in advance for future services. Professionals who depend on tips like hairdressers and nail technicians will appreciate the timing of such an act. Open up a tab for future services at a business you know you’ll patronize in the future. Buy tickets now if you plan on going to an event through the Chillicothe Area Arts Council, Cultural Corner Art Guild & Gallery or another local venue. Not sure when you plan on attending? Purchase a gift card. Order takeout or delivery and over tip if you have the means. Plan a virtual happy hour with friends and take the amount that you would have spent on your beverage and donate it to your favorite establishment. You could also do this with coffee meetings as well. Ask a business owner about how you can help. This kind gesture will go a long way. You may have just the hidden talent tucked away that could make a big difference for a local business. Have a local restaurant charge your card for a specific amount. Reach out to first responders and health care providers and let them know that coffee, lunch, etc. is on you.

Everyone is encouraged to join the Connecting Chillicothe/Livingston County Facebook page and learn about dozens of local businesses and what they are currently offering and how you can help them. (On Facebook, search for “Connecting Chillicothe/Livingston County.)

Also continue to follow the Chillicothe Area Chamber Facebook page as we continually update with information such as changes in business, important volunteer needs and even new temporary jobs that come available due to current needs.

Visit chillicothemo.com to view a full listing of up-to-date COVID-19 related information by clicking the “In the News” tab. Our goal to streamline information gathering for our businesses and our community by offering this valuable resource.

When you support a local business, shout it from the rooftops (at a safe distance, of course!) via social media. Take a photo, tag the business and let your friends and family know how they too can help our local businesses during this time of uncertainty.

We may not be able to control much of what is happening around us, but we can control how we come together as a community. Let’s continue to stay positive, check in on one another and support our local businesses. And please let the Chillicothe Area Chamber know how we can be of further assistance by contacting us directly at chamber@chillicothemo.com.

Crystal Narr is the executive director of the Chillicothe Area Chamber of Commerce.