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Venues in limbo due to impact of coronavirus

Many businesses are being impacted by the international pandemic including event spaces.

COLUMBIA, S.C. — Many businesses have been seriously impacted in the past weeks with the international coronavirus pandemic.

With the CDC’s recommendation of cancelling large events, many event venues' business is on hold.

Tom Chinn is the general manager of 701 Whaley, an event space in downtown Columbia for weddings, fundraisers, festivals and more.

“Early on we sent out a letter to all of our bookings through May, explaining the situation and saying that we’ll do whatever we can to postpone and move things but it just became more and more clear that that’s what we had to do so that’s what we’re doing.”

Chinn says most events have postponed instead of cancelled but that comes with a lot of other obstacles. Vendors have to be contacted, caterers notified and so on.

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“I think right now the most important thing is keeping that communication with the brides and all of the vendors and saying we’re here," Chinn tells News19, "we have to abide by guidelines that are set, but we’re going to do whatever we can to move forward and to make- when you do select a date- to make sure it’s just as great of an event had it happened when it was supposed to.”

And while their space is empty for now, 701 Whaley plans to be up and running as soon as they are given the greenlight, “This building took a big hit before where it sat empty for a long time- but it came back to life. And it will come back to life again. We just don’t know when, but we know that we will get through this.”

If you have any story ideas or information on things happening around town, contact us at StreetSquad@wltx.com or tweet us using the hashtag #StreetSquad19.

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