Boulevard businesses adapt during COVID-19

Updated: May 14, 2020

Even Coronavirus couldn’t squelch Kenmore Boulevard’s fighting spirit. The key to our survival? Creativity. Here are ways our businesses have adapted to serve customers safely throughout Ohio’s Stay at Home Order, and now the Stay Safe Ohio Order

The Dragon’s Mantle owner Carrie Acree used her daily store check-ins to offer virtual product tours on her Facebook page, plus and online ordering by phone, email and website.

“Our biggest concern is our customers’ safety,” she said, adding they continue to offer ‘purple door’ pickup.

Other stores like Kenmore Komics & Games and The Guitar Department continue to offer the same as well as in-store shopping, while The Rialto Theatre is selling discounted gift certificates at ahead of their soft reopening in June.

Weeks-old Lil’ Bit Cafe ramped up curbside pickup and delivery options, offering payment over the phone and no-contact food drop-offs. The Kenmore Eastern Sports Bar is offering food and beer takeout specials 5-9 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday through May 20 and will reopen May 21 with safety and social distancing protocols enforced.

After a month long closure, Pierre’s Brooklyn Pizza & Deli reopened April 21 with abbreviated hours for takeout. They have since resumed regular hours Tuesday-Friday 11 a.m.-8:30 p.m. and noon-8 p.m. Saturday.

See an updated list of Boulevard businesses open as of May 15

With public gatherings on hold, KNA also got creative, holding our first-ever Kenmore Virtual First Friday event on Facebook. The event mimicked the content and options of a typical Boulevard street parties. The May 1 event featured live music from The Guitar Department and The Rialto Theatre, a variety of useful demonstrations from Lay’s Guitar Shop, Lil’ Bit Cafe and Kenmore Branch Library. You can still check out the May First Friday videos on the KNA Facebook page.

The June 5 Kenmore Virtual First Friday will feature music from Kenmore’s own Mr. Pink, Facy Legs’ Corey Jenkins, Ben Gage and Rialto co-owner Nate Vaill of A Band Named Ashes. There will also be virtual tour of Summit Lake and a bicycle repair demonstration to get you and your family ready for the Boulevard bike lanes and Towpath Trail.

For more information about Kenmore First Fridays, follow us on Facebook at To receive weekly updates, register for our enewsletter.

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