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Local businesses on the Delmar Loop have faced a variety of unique challenges over the past year, from mandatory shutdowns in March to a closure of indoor dining in St. Louis County in November. The spread of COVID-19 and frequently changing guidelines have contributed to the difficulties that small businesses have grappled with over the past year.

Jen Kaslow, owner of Meshuggah Cafe, noted that University City allowed the cafe to extend the patio seating into parking spots to allow for more tables, which helped morale and business.

“It was really sad at the beginning because the whole reason for the coffee shop is to be a community gathering place and so to not have that community was really sad for all of us,” she said. “But then once [we transitioned to outdoors], we sort of got back our community even though it was outside.”

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