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Colorado Springs gym to close permanently because of financial impact of COVID-19 pandemic

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- As local businesses dread the possible return of the highly-restrictive "Stay at Home" health order, time has run out for one business that never recovered from the state's earlier shutdown.

Accolade Fitness, a gym on South 8th Street, will close for good this weekend. Its last day is Sunday. A second Accolade branch along Garden of the Gods Road will remain open.

The staff at the 8th Street location said the gym took a big financial hit during the spring shutdown -- being closed two months and otherwise being limited to a capacity of 50 people when the gym can easily hold four times that many.

Retail businesses, including restaurants, now have a lower capacity of 25 mandated by the upcoming change to Level 3 on the "Safer at Home" health order.

In addition to lower capacities leading to a significant drop in revenue, the gym also shut down two of its six tanning beds and closed its two sauna rooms.

"The good thing is that even with the reduced capacity, people were still able to come in and work out without having to wait," said employee Damion Copeland. "But when we had to close for awhile, it was tough."

The staff will transfer to the other Accolade location and the equipment will be sold in an online auction Dec. 2.

Meanwhile, the additional county health restrictions couldn't have come at a worse time for downtown businesses, many of which are still recovering from the pandemic and face new restrictions during the busy holiday shopping season.

"With this new restriction in place, coupled with the colder weather, people are less likely to get out of their homes and go shopping," said Laurel Prud'homme, of the Colorado Springs Downtown Partnership. "The holidays are a critical time for retailers."

But she said the mood among merchants is positive. The annual "Small Business Saturday" promotion started three weeks early to generate shopping interest.

A special online pass also will be available to customers, offering sales, discounts and free samples. For more information, visit: https://downtowncs.com/.

"We have the opportunity for people to do curbside, shops have sales with online websites, or through their Facebook and Instagram accounts. So merchants are really accommodating a variety of ways to shop. They will welcome you with open arms -- socially distanced open arms, of course."

Scott Harrison

Scott is a reporter for KRDO. Learn more about Scott here.

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