Local gyms, malls, and movie theaters left in the dark after sudden cut from phase four reopening plan

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CAPITAL REGION, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Local gyms, movie theaters and mall business owners say it’s been sad to see empty theater seats, and gym equipment and sales racks collecting dust. They were excited to end more than 100 days of closed doors, but tell NEWS10 they certainly weren’t expecting to be cut out of phase four reopening.

“The abruptness of it caught us all off guard,” admits Capital District YMCA President David Brown.

“We miss it terribly! We love our customers!” exclaims Amanda LaPage .

She and Fen Ireus own The Health Bar in Clifton Park Center Mall. They say the shutdown makes it tough to hold onto both their finances and also their employees.

“I said July 1 guys, just give us a little bit of time. We’ll get open and then once we get things smooth, I’ll bring you back in, but now I can’t hold people back from finding other jobs,” LaPage exlplains to NEWS10’s Mikhaela Singleton.

Movie theaters like Madison Theater in Albany will still have to deal with no big budget films since many studios pushed the release dates back. General Manager Kris Kiesling said he was at least looking forward to bringing back some favorites for the Fourth of July phase 4 reopening.

“We were going to take advantage of the opportunity to kind of roll out some older films and some classics, some thing that they’ve seen before or hadn’t had a chance to see on the big screen,” Kiesling says.

The Capital District YMCA meanwhile has been working with immunologists at Saint Ellis Health Partners to ensure their gyms would be completely safe for members. President Brown says he’s worried how the extra delay will affect youth programs. He says they don’t even have a date when they can start up low risk sports.

“When kids don’t have activities, that sometimes can lead to them getting into things we don’t want them to get into. This is a time they can never get back as young people, and to not be able to experience life to its fullest is very challenging for young folks,” Brown laments.

He says The Y will still offer summer day camps and daycare programs for children of first responders.

The Madison Theater will offer their restaurant and outside seating to keep them going, but the general consensus is they just want a date to plan for and a date to announce to the communities that have been supporting them over the last three months.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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