‘It’s more of a routine’: Some Kansas business owners hope people continue to mask up

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WICHITA, Kan. — This week, Sedgwick County lifted its mask mandate. Shops, restaurants, and other businesses may be making the call on masks in their business. Now, Governor Laura Kelly does have the upper hand in this decision, but some business owners say they will continue wearing masks and social distancing as much as they can during this time. They say at this point they would rather be safe than sorry.

“We are definitely going to continue making masks and everything,” said Manager of the T-shirt Kitchen Brenden Koontz.

“We have to do everything that we can to stop this pandemic,” said the owner of Aida Stenholm Shoes, Aida Stenholm.

Brenden Koontz and Aida Stenholm work at Clifton Square Village. They say allowing people to have a choice on whether to wear a mask or not is great.
“I think it’s awesome that everyone is able to have their choice now,” said Koontz.  

But they say people should remember the reason behind wearing them.

“I am from Peru, and every day I receive the news that somebody died. My friends, family my neighbor,” said Stenholm

They say it’s been a difficult year financially, but now is not the time to ease up on COVID-19 restrictions.

“We will still be wearing our mask here, and if there are any companies that want to still order like I said those bulk orders, custom masks,” said Koontz.

Brenden and Aida say if people choose to come into their locations without masks they will still accept them but they will need extra time to disinfect their locations each time.

“We are going to clean every day,” said Stenholm.

For now, they anticipate most of their clients will wear their masks and participate in the health and safety guidelines.

“Eventually, I think the masks will just totally disappear but we will see. I am not sure,” said Koontz.

Both say they believe it’s too soon for the mask mandate to be eliminated but they will respect the decision of others along the way.

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