MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — It’s back to work for around 30,000 Minnesotans today. On Monday, Gov. Walz gave the green light for retail stores to reopen for curbside transactions.

“We certainly did not think it would last this long,” said Sarah Sweet, co-owner of I Like You boutique. I don’t think I realized the severity of the virus.”

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When the governor shut businesses down, I Like You boutique turned up the creativity — using social media as a virtual showroom. Online sales are still coming but it’s not the same.

“It is going to eventually get good it’s just the not knowing if we can survive till that time comes,” explained Sweet.

Down the street at Kind Lips Lip Balm headquarters, Josh Neumann’s feeling the strain, too.

“Ninety percent of our business is selling to shops and boutique stores all around the county and when those shut, that really cut off a large part of our sales channel,” explained Josh Neumann, founder of Kind Lips Lip Balm.

While he waits for a PPP loan, he’s found some fiscal creativity and generosity.

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“I just dipped into my own pocket to pay the employees because that’s important that they get taken care of,” said Neumann.

More employees will be back to work at I Like You starting this week, they are taking the governors go ahead and amping up services. Even though the stores will still be technically closed, shoppers can call or text orders and get curbside service.

“My hope and my belief is that when stores reopen, Minnesotans will bombard those stores,” Neumann said.

And that’s Sarah’s Sweet’s hope too because Minnesotans aren’t just nice, they’re also tough.

“We are going to do the best we can, pull up those bootstraps and offer everything we can,” added Sweet.

If you’d like to order lip balm from Kind Lips click here.

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If you’d like to order from I Like You click here.

Susan-Elizabeth Littlefield