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Local

Local stores gearing up for new COVID-19 restrictions that take effect Friday

BATAVIA – Like other retail stores, Kiss The Sky record store will have to operate at no more than 25% capacity starting Friday as part of new statewide restrictions being put in place in the face of surging COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations.

But Kiss The Sky owner Steve Warrenfeltz has already been doing that in an effort to keep his customers safe. The store's maximum capacity is 120 people, so he could have up to 30 people in the store at one time under the new rules.

"I don't let more than 20 people in here [at a time], for everybody's comfort," Warrenfeltz said.

Customers also must wear masks to enter the store. He also offers curbside service as well as delivery.

As part of the Tier 3 restrictions that take effect Friday, retail stores are encouraged to offer delivery or curbside pickup options.

"I'm going to do what I can to minimize any concerns and make people feel safe and keep them safe as much as I can," Warrenfeltz said.

As part of Black Friday – which is the day after Thanksgiving – Kiss The Sky and other independent record stores across the nation will sell releases that are only available that day. The pandemic will change the look of this year's Black Vinyl Friday.

"I'm doing a virtual line," Warrenfeltz said. "People are signing up for a lottery and I'm drawing names out of a hat and I will assign people a place in line. I don't want people lining up, but to come here in groups of five every 15 minutes. And I'll tell you what group you're in and then we'll let you in. You'll have 15 minutes to shop."

Kiss The Sky will open at 8 a.m. that day and will close at 8 p.m. He thinks the store will be pretty busy that day.

"We'll see though," Warrenfeltz said. "This will be the first time we've had Black Friday during a pandemic."

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