Customers React To Mask Policy At Downtown Tulsa Business


Wednesday, July 1st 2020, 2:32 pm
By: Emory Bryan


TULSA -

More businesses are requiring masks for their customers, though it's still unusual, even as COVID-19 cases are on the rise.

Restaurants are among the first to take that stand.

While the product is pastry at Antoinette Baking Company, the store is focused on not just selling what's in the display case, they're trying to do what is needed to stay open for the long-term.

It involves a lot of cleaning and safety measures like blocking off larger tables and directing customers to go one way as they come in.

Antoinette is one of the few places strictly enforcing a 'no mask, no service' rule even for regulars like Sarah and Dan Pinkerton.

"I was here Sunday, and I didn't have my mask and I had to step outside; so, today I brought my mask and was able to come in and order. And if I have to wear a mask to get the cheesecake that's OK," said Dan Pinkerton.

When Antoinette posted the new policy online, the customer response was mixed but mainly positive.

The store started cleaning more as they slowly return to normal business hours.

The owner said they're being strict on masks for employees - and customers - to keep everyone as safe as possible.

Customers can remove their masks if they're eating inside, where each of the tables and chairs are constantly wiped down.

Lucy Palacios with Antoinette Baking Company said ""that is the thing, that's our big downtime thing."

The Tulsa Health Department guidelines leave it up to restaurants to decide what to require of customers and even whether to require masks for employees, though they are encouraged.

Many restaurants now offer curbside pickup, more outside tables are popping up, and some places even block a few of those tables off.

Even for places that require masks to enter, the ability to order and eat outside gives diners that option.

"If they feel that's what they need to do to make their employees feel safe, I think that's pretty awesome that they care more about their employees than they do about sellling cookies or bread," said Sarah Pinkerton.