U.S. border communities feel loss of Canadian tourists, shoppers and friends

The COVID-19 pandemic has put cross-border shopping trips and vacations on hold since March, and many American businesses along the border say they miss both the revenue and the familiar Canadian faces.

Bill Kilby, manager of Hardwick’s Country Store in Calais, Maine, has seen a dramatic 90 per cent loss in revenue and had to lay off 10 employees.

Kilby says that after 37 years on the job, he knows many Canadian customers and their children and grandchildren by name.






N.B. high school graduates touched by song from the U.S.


N.B. high school graduates touched by song from the U.S.

Billy Jones, member of the New York State Assembly for the area that includes Plattsburgh, N.Y., says the lack of Canadians means that some area campgrounds are at just 10 per cent capacity.

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He says the border closure is resulting in a new appreciation for Canadians and what they mean to the local economy.

Read more:
U.S.-Canada border closure brings challenges, opportunities for St. Stephen, N.B.

Dottie Gallagher, president and CEO of the Buffalo-Niagara Partnership says she worries a prolonged closure will prompt Canadians to change their habits and find new places to shop and vacation.

The border is currently closed until Aug. 21 for all but essential travel.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 3, 2020.


© 2020 The Canadian Press


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