Grand Island antique stores reopen

Two antique stores in Grand Island are opening their doors to customers again after months of being closed. Each will have some health measures in place. (KSNB)

GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (KSNB) - With a change in the Directed Health Measures, some Grand Island antique stores are opening back up to welcome customers inside.

Railroad Towne Antique Mall has been closed since late March and aims to open on Memorial Day. They have been busy on social media to keep customers interested and buying. Customers have had items shipped from Montana to Florida. Inside, they have even gained some new vendors as others have left.

“We have had a few dealers leave. A few were thinking about it before the pandemic hit for various reasons: health, etc,” Owner Tammy Gerdes said. “But we've also got some new dealers that are coming in and it's been exciting that even with all this going on they want to come and be part of the Railroad Towne family.”

Masks will be required inside the store. Owners said they felt things had improved enough for opening to be safe.

“The numbers are getting better and we decided to, especially because we have some unique things that we felt might make it safe to go ahead and open,” Gerdes said. “It's a very big building, with very high ceilings.”

Shady Bend Antiques opened this week. The owner said some customers have come in and are excited to be able to shop there. It has been tough financially to be closed for so long.

“It's impacted a lot because you're not bringing in any money but your bills are still accumulating,” LaDonna Enyeart said. “You still have the utilities, you still have the insurances and everything else. but you don't have the income to pay it.”

Both stores tend to not have big crowds so social distancing will be easy. Customers are encouraged to wash their hands and bring their own hand sanitizer.