Health-Focused Businesses Experience Operation Changes Amid Novel Coronavirus Crisis
UPDATE: Information about Towne & Country Health & Wellness has been added on March 19.
With news emerging daily, sometimes hourly, about the best practices to prevent spreading the coronavirus, business owners in Newtown are trying to navigate an ever-changing environment.
For businesses seeking to offer dance, yoga, health, and wellness resources to a community where residents are practicing social distancing and self-quarantining, some have upped their safety precautions and others have temporarily closed:
Ashurst Academy of Irish Dance posted to Facebook on March 14 that all its locations are closed, including its studio at 3 Simm Lane, through March 20. In the meantime, it is keeping students dancing by encouraging them to play a virtual bingo game, where in order to mark a space they must accomplish a specific exercise. For more information, visit facebook.com/ashurstirishdance.
Dance Etc, 117 Mount Pleasant Road, announced the studio’s closure in a March 13 Facebook post. On March 17, Dance Etc posted, “We are committed to keeping our community active and healthy,” and gave a variety of options for online fitness classes. For more information, visit facebook.com/danceetcnewtown.
The Graceful Planet, 7 Berkshire Road, posted to Facebook on March 15 that the studio is closed until March 21. To give students virtual class options, The Graceful Planet has posted links to free online classes with CLI Studios and asked students to tag the studio or send them a photo of them dancing along. For more information, visit facebook.com/gracefulplanet.
Lathrop School of Dance has closed its studio inside the Edmond Town Hall, at 45 Main Street, as of March 14. Owner/Director “Miss Tamra” Saric says they are taking it “week by week” and have begun making online videos of choreography for students to practice for their recital in June. Saric told The Newtown Bee that as of March 17, Lathrop School of Dance wants to help families by offering interactive online classes at discounted prices. This currently includes Zumba on the Zoom app, and she hopes to offer more dance classes, as well as some art classes, soon. For more information, visit facebook.com/lathrop-school-of-dance-261796271049.
Newtown Centre of Classical Ballet & Voice may have closed its studio at 87 South Main Street, but it is still running in online capacity. Owner Tory Gozzi told The Newtown Bee on March 17, “We are shut down physically, but not virtually.” Gozzi is running voice lessons online and making videos of choreography for students to practice for their recital, tentative planned for May/June. She is also having young students create a “ballet dictionary” where they write/learn one term a day; and having the older students make video projects for the younger students that includes a message with a dance skill to learn. For more information, visit facebook.com/newtowncentreofclassicalballet.
Journey Yoga & Wellness, 31 Hawleyville Road, suspended its classes and workshops effective March 14. Owner Linda DeStefano posted to Facebook that the studio “will remain closed until the nature and scope of COVID-19 is better managed and understood.” For more information, visit journeyyogact.com.
Newtown Yoga Center, 78 South Main Street, announced on March 17, via Facebook, that the studio is closed to group classes. Owner Aline Marie says she is looking into sending out free videos and hosting live classes on social media soon. For more information, visit facebook.com/thenewtownyogacenter.
Yoga Dimensions, 87 South Main Street, is temporarily closed until further notice. On March 16, the studio posted on its Facebook page, “After speaking with medical professionals and taking guidance from Yoga Alliance, it became abundantly clear that the ethical decision is to close the studio to do our part in keeping our community safe.” For more information, visit facebook.com/yogadimensions.
Inside the Journey Yoga and Wellness building at 31 Hawleyville Road is Seeking Up Healing, a practice that offers a variety of wellness services. Owner Aimee Farrell Dos Santos posted to Facebook on March 12 that she will be stopping services through the rest of March with the hopes of opening extra days in April and May. She is, however, continuing to conduct clinical therapy appointments for clients via telephone or FaceTime. For more information, visit facebook.com/seekinguphealing.
River’s Edge Healing Center owner Lori Haggerty told The Newtown Bee that its building at 5 Riverside Road is open for its practitioners to see clients “coming in on an individual basis.” They are continuing to sanitize surfaces, practice hand washing, and sterilize equipment. River’s Edge Healing Center has canceled its upcoming group workshops where large groups would be gathering but added some services to be offered by phone. For more information, visit facebook.com/riversedgehealingct.
Balanced Pilates and Barre Studio, 125 South Main Street, is closed as of March 17, according to owner Martina Sprague. She is starting live streaming classes and those interested in participating can reach out to her for the link. For more information, visit facebook.com/balancedpilatesbarre.
Barre Boutique, 87 South Main Street, posted to Facebook on March 15 that the studio is closed, and all monthly memberships are suspended. The following day it announced people can take online classes using the Zoom app. For more information, visit facebook.com/barreboutique.
BoostCycle, 274 South Main Street, posted to Facebook March 16 that they are temporarily closed but hope to reopen March 30. Owner Emily DeMarco explained that clients who were booked for an upcoming class will have their credits returned to their account for future use. The post also stated, “All memberships will be automatically frozen for the duration of the closure, and class package expiration dates will be automatically extended.” For information, visit facebook.com/boostcycle.
The Newtown Salt Spa, 43 South Main Street, announced online March 14 that it is open, but that all sessions are private until further notice to encourage social distancing. On March 10, owner Katherine Hansen released a notice saying they are disinfecting surfaces multiples times a day, providing hand sanitizer at the front desk, cleaning the salt room between every session, and blankets are washed after one use. The notice also details, “Salt is antibacterial and antimicrobial, which kills many microorganisms or stops their growth,” and that “Our exhaust system purges the salt room in between sessions for a fresh air exchange prior to the following session.” Since operation hours may be different than posted, Hansen asks people to call 203-491-2212 or e-mail email@example.com with any questions. For more information, visit facebook.com/newtownsaltspa.
Towne & Country Health & Wellness owner Andy DeLillo told The Newtown Bee on the morning of March 19 that the shop, located at 274 South Main Street, is open with its normal hours and that it has gloves for those that need them. The business is doing free deliveries. For more information, call 475-323-2175.