Business owners, public react to Guilford County mask mandate

Coronavirus

GUILFORD COUNTY, N.C. (WGHP) — On Saturday night in downtown Greensboro, dozens of people walked the street, some with masks and others without, as folks are adjusting to a new mask requirement in Guilford County.

“There’s different opinions about what people are willing to do. I personally wear it, so we can kind of get out of this,” Dylan Misenheimer said.

Signs are up at multiple restaurants, reminding customers that they must mask up to come inside. We watched as people put on their masks to enter local businesses.

“Surprised but not surprised. Something was going to happen eventually,” said Rosario Mascali, owner of New York Pizza Bar and Grill.

Well before Friday’s 5 p.m. deadline, New York Pizza Bar and Grill in Greensboro had their workers wearing masks.

“We all got our masks. It’s hot, especially in the kitchen, but that’s the way it is,” Mascali said.

He says while some customers get adjusted to the mandate, he is still working on how to enforce it.

“We could put someone in front of the door, and stop people from coming in if they don’t have a mask? So we haven’t got to that part yet. We’re waiting on the next step,” Mascali said.

Other managers told us they were not happy with the timeline of the mandate. Some believed bars and restaurants would lose business to neighboring counties that don’t have mask requirements.

“I know a lot of anti-vaxxers are going to be like ‘I’m not going to wear them,’ so if they have another restaurant that wouldn’t require it, they probably will go ahead and do the 15-minute drive,” Alberto Gonzalez said.

While some say COVID restrictions have been confusing throughout the pandemic, others are hoping to do their part to slow the spread.

“Just be safe, and wear your mask again, so we can smash the delta variant as cases are rising,” Liz Williams said.

We also reached out to the Guilford County communications manager to get answers on how the mask requirement will be enforced.

We have not heard back. Businesses that do not comply could face fines up to $1,500.

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