Clifton Forge businesses reopen their doors

Published: Jul. 14, 2020 at 5:40 PM EDT
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CLIFTON FORGE, Va. (WDBJ) - The big wooden scissors they used at the Mountain Field Market ribbon-cutting were more ceremonial than functional, but the sales that happened right after the ceremony were very real.

“We actually opened before everything truly started with the COVID,” said Ashley Bennett, who co-owns the business with her husband, Ron. “But we started at the first of the year, so we just had to hold on through everything.”

They specialize in local products, the sorts of things you probably won’t find at a big supermarket, including beef from the family farm and ice cream from the Homestead Creamery.

“We got tired of driving an hour and a half to go get it,” Ron Bennett explained.

“We’re very excited to see businesses reopening and people getting out and visiting these businesses,” said Clifton Forge Town Manager Reba Mohler.

While a few remain closed, Clifton Forge is beginning to come back to life.

“I think some businesses have reopened slowly,” Mohler said. “But people are coming out and patronizing those businesses, and that’s much appreciated.”

“We always take the road of being optimistic about things looking up,” said Teresa Hammond, executive director of the Alleghany Highlands Chamber of Commerce. “Again as I mentioned, our small business community, with both of our downtown organizations, are very resilient and look forward to reopening and serving their customers.”

And handling the new normal as best as they can.

“One day at a time with everything. That’s how we’re taking it,” said Ashley Bennett. “Just can’t look too far into the future and just got to go with it.”

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