Riding with the pandemic

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David Roberts, above, works on a bicycle in his shop, Spokes, located on main Street, in Windsor, Colo. Since the pandemic, he and his wife have been busier than ever. Photo courtesy of Gannon Rothman.

Sheri and David Roberts never expected a recession to hit during the summer of 2020. The owners of the bicycle shop Spokes, on Main Street in Windsor, Colo., have always stayed busy and profitable as a small business in their community.

Then COVID-19 hit and forced their store to close. Much like many Americans, their home kitchen was their new office space while their store only offered drop-off and curbside service.

So far, Spokes has been able to pedal its way through the pandemic. With mandatory closures from Governor Polis back in April and May, David and Sheri were still able to offer services for their town. They were busier than ever.

“It was exhausting,” Sheri Roberts said, speaking about the way the shop operated during the temporary closure, running back and forth with customer’s credit cards in exchange for chain links and bicycle lights.

While gyms were shutting down, Spokes was speeding up, pairing outside cycling with social distancing. People needed physical exercise more than ever and biking around town seemed like the best decision to make.

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“We never really closed our doors,” Sheri said. “People would drop off their bikes, at one point filling up an entire wall with bicycle orders.”

She points to the wall where bike racks hang with bicycles spaced out across pending customer pick-up.

Local support appears to be the piece keeping these small businesses alive. So much so that Spokes is unable to receive inventory until March 2021.

Another small business making its way through the pandemic is the Lil Flower Shop, a few steps down from Spokes.

Upon opening the door, the inside looks like a technicolor scene from the “Wizard of Oz.”

Kanasia Tait, above, adjusts a floral arrangement. The Lil Flower Shop has stayed busy since the pandemic forced general manager, Lesa Harkness, to close their store for the month of April. Photo courtesy of Gannon Rothman.

Lesa Harkness, the general manager, talks to a customer on the phone about a floral arrangement in the back of the store. Kanasia Tait, one of the florist designers, adjusts a bouquet of flowers, cutting away stems and leaves.

“It’s been good since we’ve came back,” Tait said after the shop was closed in April, leaving them sitting at home with nothing to do.

“The community support is amazing,” Harkness said. “You can’t go visit so people are sending flowers.”

For more information on supporting these businesses, visit their websites at www.spokesinc.com or www.lilflowershop.com.

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