A new business in Tulsa Hills celebrated its grand opening Monday, more than six weeks after the owners were hoping to welcome customers inside.
The owners of Hand and Stone Massage and Facial Spa were encouraged by the opportunities available to Tulsa businessowners, despite the setbacks they faced from the pandemic.
"It's been really, really stressful,” Teresa Goodnight said.
Teresa and her husband Ryan found out in mid-April they would not be getting the loan they were pre-approved for. Their plan was to open the first week in May.
"In the middle of it we had the SBA send out a letter to the banks saying they didn't have to move forward with new businesses. So we were knee-deep invested, halfway built, with no funds to continue on,” Teresa said.
They are working to fill out paperwork for the "Tulsa County Business RESET Program" through TEDC, hoping to get a grant, too.
She said franchise owners haven't seen the same opportunities in other cities across the country.
"I do not hear from the other owners the same kind of support that we have been able to get from the City of Tulsa."
The couple also took advantage of the Safer Tulsa County program, funded by the CARES Act, to get things like masks and sanitizer.
"Safety is definitely a concern, both for our employees as well as for clients. We want to make sure that everybody feels safe and comfortable,” Ryan said.
The couple said they also got help from a non-profit called SCORE, which provides volunteer mentors to help businessowners navigate challenges, like the pandemic.