BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — After having to close for over six months, this year-round costume store Fantasy Frocks is now back just in time for Halloween. On Thursday, 23ABC was able to speak with the owner on what it's like to be able to serve the community during the COVID-19 pandemic.
On the corner of F and 17th Streets sits the Fantasy Frocks, a locally owned year-round costume shop.
Like many local small businesses, they've been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
They've just reopened, but their doors have been closed since March.
"Monetarily of course it has been devastating when you lose 30 to 40% of your business's annual income due to something like this. I'm sure if this happened earlier in my career I'm sure it would have been our last year," said Jennifer Keller, owner
As they welcome customers back, they're also celebrating 40 years of serving the community.
Jennifer Keller, the owner says that love and support is what pushed her to reopen.
And like many other businesses they have made some COVID safety changes to their operation.
"We are asking people to wear masks, practice social distancing, we haven't had issues of crowding yet but at some point, we will limit the number of people in the shop. And we are handling try ons differently. We aren't having try ons at all," said Keller.
Keller says they are still doing rental costumes but with added precautions.
"We are requiring everyone to keep rentals until November, and then when we get it back we are placing them in bags, and lysoling them, then dry cleaning and steaming. That should get rid of any COVID," said Keller
Despite the many changes, Fantasy Frocks remains hopeful and says it has been exciting to hear how everyone has been creative this Halloween. Keller had this to say to anyone who has concerns celebrating the spooky holiday during the pandemic:
"It's always on the calendar. October 31 and we only have one chance to give our kids a happy childhood. So even if your kids just dress up and you have a little party in your home, in your living room you know, it's just the one time a year you can be who you want to be, and I don't think we need to sacrifice that. There are ways to do it safely."