By Caroline Reed | Be Bossier
With the start of social distancing and limiting groups of people to 10 or less, to the stay-at-home order issued by Gov. John Bel Edwards in March, business owners in the area have gotten more creative than ever to make sure they are still serving their customers and audiences the best they can during the coronavirus outbreak.
These businesses are ones that can fill your stomach or closet, or get you moving to avoid feeling lazy during quarantine time. Not only are they serving their customers but they are spreading positivity in light of the circumstances.
BeauxJax has been innovative from their inception but they have taken this challenge and turned it into an opportunity.
In addition to their normal day-to-day operations of pick-up orders, BeauxJax has been selling their Cajun packs of etoufee, red beans, and gumbeaux, potato soup and crab bisque. These dishes come in food storage bags that can be frozen and served at any time.
“The community is supporting us and now it’s our turn to support them,” Beau Hays said.
The restaurant group of Hays and his partners created a Food for the Frontline Fundraiser that generated $10,000 in two days. Because of this, they have been able to show the support of the community to those risking their lives for our community.
The goal of this fundraiser is to feed every wing of every hospital in Shreveport-Bossier over the next month. They are also feeding paramedics, nursing homes, and fire stations—anyone that is putting themselves on the front lines to serve our community. You can check out their social media pages to follow their success in feeding essential employees across Northwest Louisiana.
Not only are they reaching out to community members on the frontlines, they are selling King Cake Grams. For $10, they will send a King Cake with a personalized message to a friend or family member. What better way to show someone you’re thinking about them during this time apart?
Flying Heart Brewing & Pub
Flying Heart has done their best to continue to serve up goodness to the people of Bossier despite not being able to host them in their physical restaurant.
People can still pick up their favorite pizza by calling ahead and ordering curbside pickup. They also offer take and bake if you choose to cook your own at a later time.
However, they have recently added a new item that has allowed the whole family to get involved– a pizza kit.
“We figured people were going stir crazy with the kids at home and they needed a little something different to do,” Ben Pattillo, co-owner said. “Parents can come fill a growler so they can drink beer and watch the kids make dinner.”
The $20 kit includes two dough balls, cheese, marinara sauce, pepperoni, and little seasoning AND four balls of chocolate chip cookie dough. If you have requests to add in extras like veggies, they will happily add those to your kits. And that growler he is talking about – you can now get alcohol to go with your food purchase. Flying Heart has their own, branded glass bottles – growlers – that they will fill with the beer or other beverage of your choice (like ginger beer) when you purchase it with a food order.
The best part of about Flying Heart right now is even though most of their staff is unable to work at the moment, they are still doing their best to take care of them. A portion of all sales is being put in a fund that will go directly back into the staff pockets!
Not only will you fill your stomachs with good food and beer, but also know that you’re also supporting Flying Heart and their staff.
Simply Chic Boutique
Simply Chic Boutique has been meeting people right where they are even before they had to close the doors to their storefront. You may have seen the Simply Chic “Chic Van” around town but now it is allowing owner Britney Spivey to keep her business running by having the store at her fingertips.
Those that want to shop during this time can follow their Facebook or Instagram where they post daily new shipments. From there, you can be invoiced to pay with PayPal or Venmo. Once you have ordered, they will ship your order to you FREE of charge.
“We really try to deter delivery but will if it is a close neighbor and we can just put it on their front porch,” Spivey explained. “We just want to help be part of the solution and not the problem.”
Despite customers not being able to physically shop during this time, Spivey says she has been shipping many orders from her home and is really touched by the support.
Make sure to visit their social media to shop. Who says you can’t dress cute during quarantine?
Davis’ Clothing & Outdoor
Davis’ Clothing & Outdoor has been a leader and pioneer of online sales in this area for years. Now that their storefront is closed to shoppers because of the coronavirus, they have moved entirely to online sales. The best part is, that means they are always open!
You can see items for sale on the website and Facebook page to get you ready for warmer temperatures.
When you shop online, you can select to have the items sent to your home with free shipping or do in-store pick up to get your order the following day.
Purchase something from Davis for any upcoming birthdays or anniversaries — or just because! Know you are doing your part to support a local business and not a big box store!
Experiences to make you move
Christ Fit Gym
During this time all gyms have been asked to close but that hasn’t stopped Bossier’s Christ Fit Gym. Though they cannot meet in person, they are posting a work out of the day photo and daily devotional videos on their Facebook page each day.
These workouts can easily be done at home, in your yard, or around your neighborhood and don’t require equipment – just you. An example of a workout is a three-mile run followed by 100 sits ups, leg lifts and jumping jacks.
“Right now is a great time to get your Bible and get outdoors and enjoy what God has made,” Billy Weatheral of Christ Fit Gym said. “This quarantine doesn’t mean you have to be locked indoors. Get outside. Go in your neighborhood. Even though parks and gyms are closed, you can still get up and move. Something is better than nothing.”
After your workout, you can treat yourself to a Fruits of the Spirit energy tea, fruit cup, smoothie, or coffee at Christ Fit as they are still open and operating. You can order and pick up there or call to place your order and they will deliver! Fuel your body inside and out.
In addition, they are still running their thrift store and are working with Volunteers for America to help deliver items like food and medical supplies. You can find information on how to donate or shop on their Facebook.
Vicki’s School of Dance
Vicki’s School of Dance began posting Vicki’s Virtual Videos to keep their dancers moving as they could no longer host classes in their studio. These videos are available for the public on their Facebook, Instagram, and the Vicki’s Dancers YouTube channel to get people up and moving in their own homes.
During the filming of these virtual videos, the staff of Vicki’s School of Dance worked non-stop to get their live stream classes up and running for their students.
“We are on our second week of live stream classes and they are going great,” Sara Fulghum, dance instructor and business director of Vicki’s School of Dance said. “The joy on their faces when they get to do some type of normalcy, even if it’s a new temporary normal, it is so heartwarming.”
The staff at Vicki’s makes it a point not to discuss anything related to the coronavirus no matter their age.
“They’re hearing enough about it every other minute of the day,” Fulghum explained. “We use this time – just as we do in the actual dance room – to focus on what they love, which is dance! In our studio, we make sure that when they walk in the dance room they leave any problems and troubles at the door, we strive to always keep a healthy, positive environment – and that is the same philosophy we are sticking with through our live stream classes even though their dance room looks a lot like their living room!”
Though our community might be physically apart, it is clear that in times like these we are closer than ever. Continue to support local businesses and maintain your best practices to help move Bossier forward.
Published in collaboration with Be Bossier’s blog. www.bebossier.com