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Lansing Business

While the global pandemic has shut down many businesses, many others have remained open.  Several Lansing restaurants, for instance, are open for takeout, Lansing Market is open, local guitar teacher Bob Keefe is offering online lessons, and the list goes on.  A new Facebook group was created for Lansing last weekend, based on a Cortland Facebook group that promotes that city's businesses during the pandemic. The Lansing group has become immediately active.

"It's a group in which you can consistently put your information out there," LaVigne says. "What are your specials for Wednesday? Thursday? Is it Taco Tuesday, for instance, at a Salt Point Brewery? Is this pulled pork Friday at Flynn's Roadhouse, or is it this week we're doing pizza?  So it's a way to communicate to everybody. That started up over the weekends."

Since he was first elected LaVigne has been an enthusiastic advocate for Lansing.  He started his 'Lansing Is Open For Business' campaign over four years ago.  But with the coronavirus pandemic having such a big impact on small businesses, LaVigne started regularly posting on his own account to encourage Lansing folks to support local businesses.  He posts when he gets takeout from a variety of local restaurants, and encourages others to share where they are getting takeout from.

"It's time to ramp it up, a message to sensitize people," LaVigne says. "Where am I going today? I'm going here, here, here, and you start the conversation by saying I'm going to this place, and where have you eaten lately? And you start to share information back and forth. And that's what I've done. You know, I've been to Crossroads, I've been to Flynn's Road House... Hatfield Catering is another one. I have not been to the Sub Shop yet. Since the pandemic, there's a variety of other places I want to go to."

Jessica Ray and Niki Watkins are administering the group and posting about Lansing businesses that are open.  Many Lansing business owners have also posted.  Special events, daily offerings, updated menus and hours are all fair game.

Lansing Business Posts

"It's to communicate to people that these things are out there," LaVigne says. "How do you communicate with people what's on the menu tonight? Okay. Tonight is fried fish. Hatfield's Caterings doing lunch. They had pulled pork last Friday. What are you doing this week?"

LaVigne has also encourages Lansing people to buy gift certificates for local businesses like beauty salons or gyms that can't be open right now.  With the coming of Spring landscaping and plant businesses like Baker's Acres and The Plantsman nursery  is open.

The big question is, will things like the Facebook group be enough to keep local businesses open until people are able to gather again?

"It's not going to hurt," LaVigne says.  "But we're trying to help them as many ways as possible to promote the safe practices, but also to allow them to survive. For instance Milton Meadows has a newsletter that they send to their residents every month.  You get the word out for instance, cut out this ad or mention this code word and  get $2 off in your first visit. There are a lot of different ways people can do it locally to promote their businesses. And we find out honestly that, uh, shopping may actually change. Some people had told me in the grocery business that they think eventually most people will shop online."

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