A photo of Grins Restaurant with a sign enforcing a mask rule

No Mask, No Service: A Student Documentary

By Paige Greene
Web Content Manager

“No Mask, No Service” is a short nine-minute documentary about how COVID-19 affected the local businesses of San Marcos, TX.

In the documentary, I speak to business owners Paul Sutphen of Grins and Adam Liley of Pie Society about the COVID-19 pandemic and how their restaurant dealt with the hardship.

“For six months, every day we didn’t know what was going to happen,” explained Sutphen. “What the government was going to do, what the city was going to do, what restrictions we would have, and it was devastating. It’s been a devastating year.”

Businesses shut down during what is called the “busy season,” which makes the revenue to get through the slow season. Liley explains in the documentary that everyone “dealt with that in different ways.”

He explains how the local business, The Root Cellar, closed and did not open for months because they were so unsure of what would happen. This was along with many businesses in San Marcos.

Pie Society, along with many others, found ways to safely open their businesses, whether that was only take out or patio, and until March 10, 2021, Texas could not fully reopen restaurants, so they found other ways to make money.

Another struggle many restaurants found was COVID-19 protocol and how to stop the waves of employees getting sick. This meant a change in how these businesses have been running for the past few years.

Since interviewing, many restaurants have removed their mask requirement due to the availability of vaccines, and businesses have picked back up for the busy season.

Featured Image by Paige Greene

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