Salons reopen across Minnesota

Blaise Keller
Created: June 01, 2020 06:16 PM

(ABC 6 News) - Across Minnesota, businesses such as salons, tattoo parlors, bars, and restaurants reopen with limitations such as operating at 25% building capacity.

For two co-owners of a salon in northeastern Rochester, opening day comes with mixed emotions. 


"When it did come down that y'all could reopen... walk me through the emotions that you all felt."

"We were excited, we were scared, we wanted to make sure we were doing everything right..," says Tanya Sutherland, one of three who owns Studio 507 located in northeastern Rochester.

Sutherland says that she wanted to be a nurse however because she gets "too attached" to people, she went into cosmetology. Along with Sutherland, April Pahl and Jess Abolt own the salon after previously working together at a different salon. 

Pahl says the idea for Studio 507 started off as somewhat a joke, saying they joked about actually starting their own salon. But on July 11th of 2016, their doors opened. The three went through many "firsts" as small business owners.

Another first they, as well as the rest of the world, went through, was COVID-19. To combat the spread on a state level, Minnesota Governor Tim Walz shut down non-essential businesses on March 16th later clarifying that salons, along with a few other businesses, were to close on the 18th.

That initial closure was meant to last through March 27th.
 "We wish we would have had, at least, a 24-hour notice," says Tanya Sutherland. Sutherland along with Pahl tells ABC 6 News that they called those who had appointments to cancel throughout the night after they heard about the order.

Both Pahl and Sutherland came to their salon to unplug devices, clean everything, and cry because they didn't know when salons were going to be able to reopen. 
 Salons, along with other businesses, were able to reopen their doors partially with curbside pickup, which began in early May. But the announcement Sutherland, Pahl, Abolt, as well as other salon business owners, were waiting for arrived May 20th. Governor Walz announcing that starting June 1st, salons, tattoo parlors, bars as well as restaurants could reopen so long as they followed new guidelines. 

At Studio 507 as well as other salons, walk-ins are not allowed - all appointments must be made ahead of time.

Clients will have to wait either in their cars or outside until their appointment time.

Client's temperatures will be taken upon walking into the building and a questionnaire will be filled out, and employees and clients must wear masks at all times.

Pahl and Sutherland say that within their salon, a curtain has been put up between hair washing stations as well as installing a hand sanitizer pump at the building entrance. 
"Sanitation practices will continue," says Pahl, "We are already mandated to do a lot of the safety and sanitation that's been put in place, that's an everyday thing for us."
 Though their clients did not wish to be on camera, ABC 6 News was able to speak to those waiting outside of Great Clips in Rochester at their south location. They, too, did not wish to be on camera but say that they did feel safe about getting their hair cut with the new guidelines in place.

The safety of the clients as well as the stylists is something that Pahl and Sutherland, along with the other employees worked on, in detail, prior to their doors reopening June first. 

"We were all kinda just giggling this morning like 'Oh my God, we get to do hair again'! I was talking to my first client and I said, 'I'm just looking so forward to giving something to making someone feel good that maybe hasn't felt good for months now," says Pahl.

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