Business Boards Up for G-8 - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

06/04/04

Business Boards Up for G-8

Some business owners aren't taking any chances during the G-8. Some business owners aren't taking any chances during the G-8.

Four days from now, the G-8 summit begins on Sea Island. It's been in the planning for months, but many of the people who live and work in coastal Georgia still don't know what to expect. While most everyone is happy the summit is coming, now that they're getting down to the wire, some businesses are deciding they don't want to take any chances.

Business owner Ronne Lebow is bracing for the storm. "We don't know what's going to happen here so I'd rather err on the side of caution," she said.

She had the windows of her business boarded up. It's not a hurricane, but something equally unpredictable. "We just don't know what's going to happen," she said. "I was going to stay open up until I heard the protesters were going to be right across the street, and I decided we should take care of ourselves."

A string of international flags hanging out front are a sharp contrast to her boarded-up windows; but Lebow says she is still happy the G-8 is coming. "We're glad we're going to be an international site to the world for those few days," she told us.  "I had to do this for my own business and my own piece of mind."

While some businesses like Lebow's are closing their doors, others, including some right next door, are staying open.

"We refuse to give up," businesswoman Pat Hanson said. "We're not giving in to the G-8 fury of everybody thinking something bad is going to happen."

Still, she's not holding her neighbor's decision to close against her. "It's their choice and if they feel comfortable with that, I'm behind them for whatever they want to do, but I've decided to stay open."

Reported by: Liz Flynn, lflynn@wtoc.com

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