Stay-at-home order forcing a delayed start to Smith Mountain Lake busy season

Governor’s order will not be lifted until June 10

MONETA, Va. – The governor’s stay-at-home order through June 10 is especially devastating for businesses relying on tourism.

For Smith Mountain Lake, it means missing the Memorial Day kickoff to summer.

Instead of promoting the lake as a destination, Smith Mountain Lake Regional Chamber of Commerce executive director Christopher Finley said they're now shifting priorities to help small businesses navigate the crisis.

Their message to visitors is to plan your trip, just for a later date.

“We will still be open for business, just not business as usual. Smith Mountain Lake has always been a welcoming destination and will always be. And keep us in mind when these restrictions are lifted,” Finley said.

The chamber has launched several campaigns to help businesses.

The #StrongerTogetherSML social media campaign is targeted at encouraging small businesses to share tips and best practices on how to survive in this climate. Other grassroots campaigns, like #WeShopLocalSMLVirtually, have launched to share information between businesses.

They’re also encouraging people to continue supporting small businesses through delivery and takeout at restaurants, buying gift cards and shopping online.

Click here to find a resource center the Chamber of Commerce has created to provide businesses with resources to help them through this crisis.

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