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With UC shut down and FCC season suspended, Short Vine businesses take a hit

Posted at 10:55 PM, Mar 14, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-15 12:54:20-04

CINCINNATI — Editor’s note: With our coronavirus coverage, our goal is not to alarm you but to equip you with the information you need. We will try to keep things in context and focus on helping you make decisions. See a list of resources and frequently asked questions at the end of this story and see our ongoing coronavirus coverage here.

The bustling bars and restaurants along Short Vine, normally full of students and FC Cincinnati fans, are now taking a hit as shutdowns at the University of Cincinnati and throughout the city persist.

UC students packed their belongings and prepared to leave the area after UC announced it would extend its online-only policy through the end of the semester. Major League Soccer has also postponed the start of the soccer season, leaving bars normally packed with orange and blue clad fans without as many customers.

"Since everything hit -- right now it would usually be packed in here for the game," said Yogi Higgins, general manager at Mio's Pizzeria on Short Vine. "Since that, this is what we get."

FC Cincinnati was initially scheduled to play their first home game at Nippert Stadium Saturday, but the MLS season delay prevented the game from kicking off.

Businesses on Short Vine normally plan for the student-driven boom through the school year, and brace for emptier summer seasons. Now, they're trying to figure out how to get through the end of a semester without any students.

"School in, business is booming," said Higgins. "School out, you've got to deal with what you get."

Higgins said the restaurant might have to cut back on hours for some staff.

Business hasn't been as bad for all businesses along the Short Vine stretch, however. The CD Game Exchange has been able to succeed more than normal as people in the area retreat indoors.

"Oddly enough our numbers have actually been really good," said Chloe Rivir, manager at CD Game Exchange on Short Vine.

She said as many people prepare to stay home or practice social distancing, they're stopping by the small shop to find something to do with all their time indoors.

"Which, for us selling game systems and games and videos, is great," said Rivir. "Because that's what people want when they're holed up."

UC students are able to stay on campus until March 25, and off-campus students are freer to stay in the area. But students said, by comparison, the neighborhoods surrounding UC are still a shadow of what they are normally.

"Normally, it's busy, packed, everybody's going out," said Johnny Brown Gingras, a UC student. "I hear noises, parties and drinks everywhere. But it was just dead."

Find more coronavirus/COVID-19 hotlines and resources below:


  • Department of Health COVID-19 hotline: 833-4-ASK-ODH
  • See ODH’s COVID-19 resources here.


  • State COVID-19 hotline: 1-800-722-5725
  • See the Cabinet for Health and Family Services coronavirus resource site here.


  • SDH Epidemiology Resource Center: (317) 233-7125 or (317) 233-1325 after hours, or e-mail
  • See more information for coronavirus in Indiana here.

What is coronavirus, COVID-19?

According to the World Health Organization, coronaviruses are "a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV).

A novel coronavirus, such as COVID-19, is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans.

COVID-19 was first identified in December 2019 in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China and has now been detected in 45 countries across the globe, including in the U.S., according to the CDC.

The CDC reports the initial patients in China have some link to a large seafood and live animal market, indicative of animal-to-person spread. A growing number of patients, however, did not report exposure to animal markets, indicating the disease is spreading person-to-person.

What are the symptoms? How does it spread?

Confirmed cases of COVID-19 have ranged from mild symptoms to severe illness and death, according to the CDC. Symptoms can include fever, cough, shortness of breath.

The CDC said symptoms could appear in as few as two days or as long as 14 days after exposure. It is similar to the incubation period for MERS.

Spread of the virus is thought to be mainly from person-to-person. Spread is between people who are in close contact with one another (within about six feet). Spread occurs via respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. The droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.

According to the CDC, it could be possible for a person to get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose or possibly their eyes. This is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads, the CDC said.

The disease is most contagious when people are the sickest and showing the most symptoms.