Downtown Nashville businesses prepare for another protest

Local News

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — Downtown businesses in Music City are making preparations as another protest is scheduled for Thursday afternoon.

Many of the businesses on Broadway are closed and still boarded up following Saturday night’s riots, while others are making preparations for downtown to be get hit again.

“We only plan on running one shift that day and we are going to close as early as we can just to make sure all my employees get home safe, make sure we stay safe as possible,” said Kris Mayfield the General Manager of Savannah’s Candy Kitchen in Nashville.

Like many downtown businesses, the popular candy store will be closing up shop early yet again Thursday for the safety of their employees.

“I don’t think we are planning on boarding up anything, I just think my boss and my owner really cares about our employees safety.”

However, other establishments like John Rich’s Redneck Riviera will be boarding up their windows with plans to be closed for the day. While an employee at Legends Gift Shop told News 2 they will not be boarding up,  saying they refuse to “give in.”

“Unfortunately it’s just a bad, bad situation and a couple of bad apples,” said Mayfield.

Thirty downtown businesses and buildings were damaged Saturday in Nashville by vandals, according to Metro police.

The owner of Layla’s Honky Tonk told News 2 they plan to stay open until at least 7 p.m. as of right now, but expects there will be a curfew. She said the bar has only been open five days since COVID-19 and three of those days had a curfew, making it hard on the cities small business owners.

“We love Nashville and hopefully everything is going to get back to as normal as we possibly can as soon as possible,” stated Mayfield.

Most business owners tell News 2 they are waiting for guidance from Mayor Cooper as to how to handle Thursday. The protest meet-up is scheduled for 4 O’clock at Bicentennial Mall with a march to the Tennessee State Capitol. The protest is not officially organized by Black Lives Matter Nashville, but the organization says they will stand in solidarity with the black youth that plan to lead the action.

The latest on the protests and riots following the “I Will Breathe” rally in Nashville:

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