Williamsburg event planner speaks out about coronavirus impact

Posted at 4:59 PM, Mar 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-16 21:47:27-04

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. - Steve Rose suffered a stroke at the beginning of 2020. He said it gave him a new perspective on life.

Now, he is dealing with the effects of the coronavirus.

Rose owns Williamsburg Event Rentals and has already lost about two dozen events due to cancellations. He said he is out $100,000.

News 3 met up with him at his new cafe and gift shop that was supposed to open this weekend. He said they will still operate but will only provide takeout.

Spoke and Art is at the base of the 52-mile Virginia Capital Trail, which runs from Jamestown to Richmond. There are bikers and walkers from all over that come to experience the trail.

Rose said all of his events from now until April have been canceled. The last one came in Monday afternoon, and he said the phone has been ringing off the hook.

In Downtown Williamsburg, the Sideshow Gallery already had plans to close their doors but had to change plans and are now trying to sell items online instead of a massive clearance sale.

Related: Businesses taking action against coronavirus; hospitality industry faces impacts

Times are challenging for small businesses. Rose said he has called local lawmakers trying to see if there is financial relief on the way.

Click here for full coronavirus coverage.