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Phase one starts, Tennessee restaurants reopen at 50 percent capacity

Restaurant owners across Tennessee opened their dinning rooms today apart of Governor Bill Lee’s phases economic recovery plan. Now some owners are a little hesitant while others are excited.

Governor Lee released guidelines last week for restaurants and retail spaces as they begin to open.

Many restaurants used this past weekend to prepare for the big day today.

“We’ve walked through with tape measures to make sure that every person or every group of people will maintain 6 feet of social distancing from each other", says Co General Manager for Rafferty's, Joey Carroll.

Restaurants used curbside pickup and delivery options as a way to limit contact between customers and their employees.

Owners say although they are continuing those safety measures as they reopen their dining rooms, but they are excited to see their customers.

“You know we are looking forward to seeing our customers. Actually seeing them, sitting down and enjoying the food, at the same time we trying to keep them safe, keep our staff safe", says Owner of Mama Baudo's Chow Bella, Jack Baudo.

But some businesses chose to keep their dining room closed for now.

Management at Los Portales decided opening right now was not in the best interest of their customers or employees.

“We felt like it was in the best interest of our restaurant and our employees to hold off and prepare a little better. I mean whether it be a week, two weeks. We really don’t have a time frame yet", says managing partner at Los Portales, Joel Aguirre.

Because they needed a little more time to make sure everyone stays safe.

Now today’s reopening was only for restaurants. Retail spaces will be able to reopen on Wednesday. In Jackson, for 39 News, I’m Imani Williams.

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