McKinney Shuts Down Photo Essay by Sarah Stevens

“Ferme,” meaning “closed” reads a sign outside SOHO, a women’s retail store in downtown Mckinney, one of the shops that has remained closed. 

McKinney, a small town on the fringes of the Dallas/Fort Worth "metroplex," is a quiet place in normal times, best known for its iconic town square. The pall of COVID-19 brought life there to a halt. Mayor George Fuller, whose own daughter tested positive for the SARS-Cov-2 virus, made headlines when he was sued by a business owner protesting his stay-at-home order. Many business owners worry they may never recover.

April 27, 2020. Flowers in a pot grow by the courthouse in McKinney Square, by a mostly empty Kentucky Street on a spring afternoon.
April 26, 2020. One of the many closed signs, at a vintage shop is surrounded by greenery. Vintage shops, with their ever evolving inventories, present special challenges for conversion to online sales.
April 26, 2020. The green chairs from The Celt Irish Pub on N. Tennessee Street are stacked outside of the pub, in front of the courthouse. The pub struggled to adapt and only began offering curbside takeout and delivery on April 27.
April 26, 2020. The Palace Barber Shop, with a homemade sign reading, “save our square” stands on a very empty street, full of closed stores deemed non-essential businesses. Many businesses put up these home-made signs to bring awareness to the economic damage from the closures of "non-essential" businesses.
April 26, 2020. Baby Yoda, a very popular online meme from the Star Wars universe, is painted on the glass door of a toy store. During these times, people have stayed connected online for school, work, political and commercial organization.
April 26, 2020. A decorative neon sign reading “Open” looms over empty tables at this closed restaurant at the square. The restaurant re-opened on May 1, with recommended 25% seating capacity, but struggles to make a profit with so few clients.
April 26, 2020 Empty chairs sit with empty tables at Landon Winery on N. Kentucky Street. The "open for carry out" banner attracts some customers.
April 27, 2020. An empty S. Tennessee Street is left with no visitors around dinnertime on the afternoon of April 27, as shops that should have been busy like Emporium Pies and The Groovy Coop remained closed. Emporium, a usually extremely busy pie shop known to have a line out the door, remained closed for the entirety of the stay-at-home order.


Photo Essay by Sarah Stevens