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Canceled events hurting local party rental businesses

With many summer events being canceled with COVID-19, local rental businesses are struggling.
Published: Aug. 12, 2020 at 10:15 PM CDT
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WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAW) -

The summer of 2020 has shown how many small businesses have had to adapt with COVID-19. One field that is struggling to adapt with all of the canceled events is party rentals. AC and Sons Party Tent Rentals is a local business in Wausau and they have seen their business almost cut in half.

“Typically we do 1,300 to 1,400 invoices each year, and this year I think we’re sitting at about 600,” AC and Sons Owner Bill Fischer said.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, AC and Sons was expecting to see growth in their business this summer.

“Most of this inventory would start working its way out of the warehouse, but it’s going to be sitting here all weekend,” Fischer added.

With all the canceled events, AC and Sons has had to refund all of the renters.

“To date we’ve refunded over $12,000 dollars in deposits that people prepaid. It’s not their fault that things had to cancel and we’re not going to hold them accountable for that,” Fischer explained.

Even with the loss of major events like Balloon and Rib Fest or the jazz festival, Bill has tried to be proactive during COVID-19.

“We spent a lot of time when the phone wasn’t ringing to improve our products, expand our inventory,” Fischer stated.

Right now majority of the inventory is sitting dormant in their warehouse. But other units have been used for the “Dining on the Street” event. Which is a win for Bill, and the restaurants involved.

“For a lot of the restaurants what it sounds like so far is that Wednesday is their busiest night of the week,” Fischer said.

With income opportunities so few and far between for many small businesses, Bill says that companies need to be frugal now more than ever.

“Don’t try to spread yourself too thin, just stick to your business plan and hopefully this thing will take care of itself,” Fischer explained.

Copyright 2020 WSAW. All rights reserved.

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