Coronavirus: Creative ways Edmonton businesses are adapting amid COVID-19

Capacity restrictions and physical distancing measures due to the novel coronavirus pandemic have seen many Edmonton businesses take a huge hit.

Gatherings of over 50 people have been banned and health and government officials at all levels are asking people to just stay home.

Nightclubs and bars have been ordered to close, and many restaurants have temporarily shut their doors.

Other kinds of businesses are seeing huge drops in traffic as people stay home and avoid everything except absolutely essential outings.

However, many local businesses are getting creative, offering online orders, delivery and takeout, and finding other innovative methods to continue offering their goods and services safely. Others are launching initiatives to support front-line workers.

Here’s a list of Edmonton businesses (by type and alphabetically) and how they’re adapting and showing love to the community:

Stores, shops and initiatives

Club Mead Pet Resort, a boarding facility in the Nisku area, is staying open to offer pet care. It’s also offering discounts to those working longer hours during the pandemic and to make it more affordable for those who need help taking care of their animal.

The business will offer the discounted day rate until just before Easter and then will re-evaluate. People can visit the website, contact Club Mead, and it will help on an individual basis.

The Dog House Daycare offers dog training. Starting in two weeks’ time, the next course will be online dog training sessions.

Owner and lead trainer Kristen will be offering online training sessions through Zoom. The platform will allow for group video classes, instructional videos and real-time feedback while also observing social distancing.

The online lessons will cost the same amount as the in-person training sessions would.

Glass Bookshop is urging Edmontonians to shop local and is offering options even during the COVID-19 health crisis.

While the doors are closed, delivery is still on, every two days and totally free. Avid readers can browse options here.

Massage Heights, a subscription massage clinic, closed all its physical locations. However, it is offering clients the option to suspend their subscriptions at no fee, or they can continue their subscription and build up credit for future massages.

“With this option, Massage Heights will turn 100 per cent of the revenue into immediate, interest-free loans available to all employees in need of assistance during the temporary closure. If you choose this option, thank you. It will mean a great deal to all of our team members.”

Men in Kilts cleaning service decided to change its direction and focus on providing a delivery service for self-isolating people during the pandemic.

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Calgary-Edmonton president Spencer Wik said people can send them a grocery list over email and confirm payment options — either e-transfer or cash. Crew members then head to the grocery store, buy the needed items and drop the groceries off on the front step at a designated time.

Skip the Depot, a service that usually picks up your bottle recycling, is offering 100 per cent bottle refund deposits on home pickup using the promo code DOINGMYPART.

If residents don’t need the refund money, they can donate it to one of over 250 charities and other non-profit organizations.

West End Gallery had to close its space to the public in Edmonton due to the novel coronavirus. The local art gallery moved to appointment-only for gallery visits in Edmonton. But it’s open for business online and spreading the word using social media.

yegTechCares is asking salaried employees to give up the equivalent of one hour of their monthly salary for the next three months and donate it to the Edmonton Food Bank.

“Where we can, the companies themselves will match those donations,” the group said. “As an industry, we are lucky – the unprecedented situation with COVID-19 will likely be something we adjust to, rather than something that poses an existential threat to our businesses.

“However, there are many people in our economy — wait staff, people who rely on retail shifts, airline staff, artists, substitute teachers — that suddenly find themselves in a precarious situation they could not have expected.”

Food and drink spots

Love Pizza performed an amazing act of kindness. The pizza company took 20 pies to the University of Alberta Hospital ER, along with Northern Chicken, Woodshed Burgers and Delux Burger Bar, to feed front-line health-care workers.

With the help of other donations, the company has also delivered free pizza to the Youth Emergency and Support Services (YESS), St. Albert Ambulance and Fire, the Sturgeon Hospital and workers at the Grey Nuns Hospital (including doctors, nurses and cleaning staff).

Love Pizza launched a $5 pizza support program and in just 36 hours, more than 900 pizzas were delivered to front-line workers across Edmonton.

“We say, you want to feed the belly with love, but it’s also getting those really heart-warming messages that really helps, too, just letting them know that we’re thinking of them and that we’re supporting them. I think it means a lot to them,” co-owner Braede Harris told Global News.

To offer your support, click here.

Spinelli Italian Centre is offering home delivery of groceries servicing Edmonton and select surrounding areas between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. for orders of $75 and more. Delivery will be made contact-free.

Gyms and classes

Bliss YogaSpa is offering yoga classes online. Participants can book appointments online to secure their spot.

Champs Boxing Studio is offering free live sessions online through Instagram (and available for 24 hours after). The gym encouraged patrons to support Champs by purchasing gift cards or class passes, if they’re able. All classes will be redeemable when the studio reopens.

City Fit Shop paused memberships and is offering at-home workout plans for children and adults.

Fit on 45th is offering free fitness classes (kickboxing, bootcamp) online.

Fit Your Life is offering online workouts live on its Instagram stories (available for up for 24 hours after), as well as its private Facebook group.

F.R.E.E. Fitness is offering workout classes of several varieties online for free. It is posting its classes on its academy website. It is also accepting donations to support trainers.

Lifestyle Meditation offers online classes and workshops.

Metta Yoga has been offering a variety of yoga classes online through its Instagram account.

Navina Yoga is offering free or pay-what-you-can classes online through its Instagram and Facebook accounts. It’s also offering online classes for $20 a month through its website.

Shala Ashtanga Yoga Centre is offering classes remotely through Zoom. All online classes are $8.

The Projct is offering free fitness classes online through its Instagram page.

XTherapy Athletics is live-streaming its spinning classes four times a week. It also placed its stationary bikes up for rental. High-intensity interval training equipment is also available to rent.

YEG Fitness has been compiling a list of exercise and training resources. The online fitness magazine has also been suggesting daily workouts on its website.


Several local restaurants are offering either pickup or delivery options, including Edmonton favourites like Blue Plate Diner (offering pickup and, as of March 23, said it would “soon” be offering delivery) and Bodega Tapas and Wine Bar (pickup).

Beaumont’s Chartier closed its French-Canadian dining room but is offering “comfort food” via curbside pickup.

Vinson Luong, co-founder of a new Edmonton startup, put his work on Food Search Inc. on hold when the pandemic spread and severely impacted local restaurants. He decided, instead, to focus on helping small businesses continue reaching their customers.

He developed a list of Edmonton-area restaurants offering alternative options, like pickup and delivery, and where to reach them.

A number of local businesses are offering both pickup and delivery options, including (but not limited to):

A Cappella Catering, Amore Pasta, Belgravia Pub, Bloom Cookie Co., Blowers and Grafton, Blue Orchid, Bon Ton Bakery, Buddy Wonton Seafood Restaurant, Cavern, Culina to Go, Dorinku Osaka, Duchess Bake Shop, Farrow Sandwiches, Grandin Fish ‘N’ Chips, Guru Restaurant, High Level Diner, Lemongrass Café, Meuwly’s, Mexico Lindo Tacos & Grill, NOSH Café, Padmanadi Vegetarian Restaurant, Sicilian Pasta Kitchen, Sugared & Spiced, Syphay Restaurant, The Gilded Rabbit, The Lingnan Restaurant, The Mango Tree, the Nook Café, Three Amigos, The Workshop Eatery, Tokyo Noodle Shop, Tres Carnales Taqueria, Upper Crust Café, Viphalay Laos and Thai restaurant.

For a complete list, courtesy of Luong and the Pickups and Deliveries in Edmonton and Area Facebook group, click here.


Aligra Wine and Spirits is offering both pickup and delivery options.

Bent Stick Brewery is offering pickup options for Edmonton beer fans.

Sea Change Brewing Co. closed its taprooms but is offering four-packs, new growler fills, kegs and gift cards for delivery.

Town Square Brewing Co. is offering both pickup and delivery. Options even include adding a ready-made frozen pizza.

If you are an Edmonton business that has found a way to adapt to the current climate and would like to be added to our list, send us an email.

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