Progress happened during a pandemic

We’re proud to roll out the first of two special sections in what we call the Ely Echo Progress Edition. Normally we put it all together in one week but after not having one in 2020 due to the pandemic, there was too much to do in just one week.
The fact there were that many stories is a testament to the willpower and fortitude of the small businesses owners in our community. Faced with government shutdowns, partial bailouts, loss of business and numerous restrictions, our local businesses have for the most part not just survived but thrived.
Some had to find new ways to deliver goods and services to their customers due to the coronavirus pandemic. They did just that.
Restaurants and bars were truly the hardest hit by the continual government shutdowns. We have concerns that all will be able to reopen, but we’re pulling for them. And, St. Louis County just came out with a special grant program for restaurants.
One of our favorite moves during the pandemic was at Insula. Faced with only being able to provide take out food to customers, they switched from Insula to Outsula and served people curbside. That’s thinking outside the box while putting food inside a box.
We don’t know what the future will bring to us. We do know that the Canadian border appears to be closed for this summer as well. That will undoubtedly help our resorts and outfitters.
People still want to vacation and they loved to come to areas like Ely where you can still rent a cabin with a dock on the lake. Look for our resorts to be filled up with guests who will also come to town to spend money in our local businesses.
Take time to look through the first section of this year’s Progress Edition to find out about improvements made, businesses bought and new businesses started.
The coronavirus may have wreaked havoc, but it can’t kill the willpower and fortitude of the small business owners in Ely, Minnesota.