TEXARKANA, Texas (KTAL/KMSS) – Mayor Bob Bruggeman announced the closing of all hair salons, barbershops, nail salons, and tattoo shops in Texarkana, Texas. Shop owners said the phones wouldn’t stop ringing.
Beginning on March 26 at 11:59 p.m., these businesses will be shut down until further notice to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Thursday afternoon, shops were crowded with last-minute customers trying to get their last beauty touch-up.
Pamela Wooley has been a hairdresser for 42 years. She’s owned the parks salon in Texarkana, Texas for the last 16. The announcement of hair salons shutting down due to coronavirus concerns causes lots of emotions.
“The first response is anger. We’re not happy about it because this is our living because we don’t have any paid sick days, holidays, anything like that. If we don’t work, we don’t get paid.”
The manager at Texarkana Ink tattoo shop says he knew it was only a matter of time.
“We’re just going to take it one day at a time. You know, there’s not much we can do. We’re a little disappointed. But on the other hand, we’re just going to treat it as a vacation and just keep ourselves sane you know,” said Matt Hendricks.
As the shutdown and mandatory curfew approached, customers, filled the wait rooms. Hendricks says they’re trying to squeeze in as many people as they can.
“I’d say there’s a fine line between a want and a need when it comes to tattoos. Like I said to some people it is very therapeutic. People see it as an ’out’ to whatever they’re going through at the time you know and we pride ourselves in that. And we help people in any way we can,” said Hendricks.
One customer waiting to get his first tattoo says he’s been it putting off, but the shutdown made him come a lot sooner than expected.
“I think it’s not the biggest problem. I think a lot of people you know like… I want to get a haircut sometime soon but I can wait. Just to make sure other people are safe. I’d rather know people feel more comfortable that they’re safe at home than out doing something that they know could possibly get them you know… infected,” said Thomas Ayers.
Traffic coming into these businesses have naturally slowed down since the start of this public health crisis. Local owners hope the community will continue to patronize their business once this is all over.
Along with the temporary shutdown, there’s a mandatory curfew of 10:00 p.m to 6:00 a.m. Unless you’re traveling to and from work, the hospital, or pharmacy. The curfew and shutdown are in effect on the Arkansas side starting Thursday night.
As of right now, there’s no expected end date.