‘COVID-19 safe’ awards earned by Town, area biz

  • Jake Presley, a staff member at Little Joe’s Pizza (13100 Kingston Pike in Farragut), shows the Community Commitment certificate Little Joe’s recently received from Knox County Health Department. - Photo submitted

  • Pamela Milliken, marketing specialist for Zaxby’s at 11636 Parkside Drive in Turkey Creek, shows the Community Commitment certificate Zaxby’s received from Knox County Health Department. While no re-opening date is set for its dining room, Milliken said changes are still being made in the restaurant. - Photo submitted

  • Julie Blaylock, CEO/president of Farragut West Knox Chamber of Commerce, 11826 Kingston Pike Suite 110 in Farragut, holds the Community Commitment certificate the Chamber recently received from Knox County Health Department. - Photo submitted

  • Kat Mahn, owner of Kat’s Lash Lounge & Wax Boutique, 11410 Kingston Pike Suite 300, displays her Community Commitment certificate at her front door. - Photo submitted

  • Susan Worthington, co-owner of The Southern Market at 5400 Homberg Drive in Bearden, proudly displays her business’ Community Commitment certificate. - Photo submitted

As businesses re-open, Knox County Health Department is issuing certificates to those meeting COVID-19 guidelines that they can display in their workplaces.

“Based on these three zip codes (37932, 37933 and 37934) we have 58 businesses that have received their ‘Community Commitment’ certificate,” Deborah Crouse, Knox County COVID-19 Joint Information Center Media Relations and Project director, stated in a Thursday, May 21, e-mail.

Local honorees were Farragut West Knox Chamber of Commerce, OsteoStrong Farragut, Little Joe’s Pizza, Kat’s Lash Lounge & Wax Studio and the Southern Market, 5400 Homberg Drive in Bearden.

”Businesses receive the certificate through completing the following actions: identifying a COVID-19 coordinator, displaying COVID-19 safety signage at employee/public entrances and enrolling in the COVID-19 communication listserv,” Crouse said.

“I was tickled to be certified,” said FWKCC president/CEO Julie Blaylock, who received her certificate Wednesday, May 13. “I think it’s important for any business, but especially as the Chamber, to publicly be able to show that we’re doing our part to flatten the curve and keep everyone we come into contact with safe, including ourselves.

Blaylock said she was told there were 700 applicants in the first round of sign-ups. ”A lot of (the requirements) is common sense and a lot of it is also self-policing,” she said. “The health department did not come out, nor did they have the time to come out and visit every single business.

OsteoStrong Farragut, 11110 Kingston Pike, received its Community Commitment certificate Tuesday, May 19.

“It’s on the front door,” said Dee Matchett, OsteoStrong owner and certified osteogenic technician.

“... We want to let our clients know that we are CDC compliant and staying abreast of all the latest guidelines available from the Knox Co Board of Health, which has done an excellent job protecting our community,” she added.

Little Joe’s Pizza, at the intersection of Watt Road and Kingston Pike, received its certificate Friday, May 8, said Laura Presley, co-owner with her husband, Travis Presley. “Getting the certificate was important to us to show that, not only are we excited to see our customers and get our employees back to work, but it is important to us to do so safely and under the guidance that has been set forth by Knox County,” she said.

Another Community Commitment certificate went to Kat’s Lash Lounge & Wax Studio, 11410 Kingston Pike.

“... I feel like it shows our commitment to the community that we are definitely trying to do everything to make sure we are keeping our guests safe,” owner Kat Mahn said.

As for Zaxby’s, 11636 Parkside Drive in Farragut, “We’re very proud of (getting the certificate),” said Pamela Milliken, Zaxby’s marketing specialist. “It shows that we’ve done our job. We’re ready to serve our customers when we decide to open our doors.”

In March, Zaxby’s closed its dining room, offering only drive-through service, and does not have an opening date set.

“Two days ago, we finished up the COVID-19 training that was offered through one of the restaurant safety sites and yesterday we had a manager’s meeting, educating all the managers and getting them up to speed on all of our changes and expectations,” she said.

“We’re making a few modifications and changing a few things up to protect our customers and our employees; so when we get everything in order that makes us happy, then we’ll open the doors.”