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Owosso barber shop opens its doors despite orders

Owosso Barbershop owner
Posted at 5:04 AM, May 06, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-06 05:04:15-04

OWOSSO, Mich. — The owner of a Mid- Michigan barbershop says he's received overwhelming support from the community after defying the Governor's orders and opening his doors for business.

Barbershop owner Karl Manke has been in business since 1961.

Up until Monday Manke was following the stay home, stay safe order, but he says he's had enough.

"I applied for unemployment and they denied me they denied me twice for whatever reason they just denied me and then after that I didn't get my stimulus and I decided I can't do this you know I'm living on credit cards I can't do this I have to work and I have a business and I'm trained and I decided this is what I'm going to do and open up my business," said Manke.

Manke opened up shop on Monday morning at 10 am and worked a 14 hour day with customers calling and traveling from around the state to get their hair cut.

Manke said the police department reached out to him explaining that the state of Michigan is asking him to close his doors.

"I said I'm not going to and that was the last I heard so I don't know -- I mean it wasn't a threat it was just telling me that that was a statement."

Customers have been supporting Manke's decision to open his shop.

One local resident said he waited two hours just to get his hair cut.

"Karl is awesome and I appreciate his work," said Skyler Lott.

"I'll definitely be coming back here every time now," added Lott.

Other customers traveled from Ann Arbor, Saginaw, Detroit, and Jackson to get their hair cut at Karl Manke's Barber Shop.

"I admire it - I think it takes courage and I think more people should follow suit," said Erik Gallant, from Jackson.

Manke said he still terrified of getting arrested for defying orders, but says he will continue to stay open until he catches up with his bills.

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