LACONIA — Some local banks are operating by drive-up only as they seek to protect employees and customers from the coronavirus.

Bank of New Hampshire said in a statement that its Concord Stage office, its Conway office and its Portsmouth office do not have drive-up capabilities and will be temporarily closed.

“As always, these offices will be available to answer your calls during normal banking hours,” the statement said. “Please be assured that you will still have the ability to access all services available within our online and mobile banking platforms, as well as our Telebank option.”

Certain services such as wire transfers, coin orders and safe deposit box access will be available by appointment only.

Franklin Savings Bank, in a message to clients and on its website, announced that all branch locations have been closed for in-bank transactions until further notice, but that its drive-up locations will be remain open.

FSB also has increased the frequency of its wipe-down of common-use surfaces such as door handles and ATMs.

The bank is encouraging customers to use its online banking services which allow most common transactions, including applying for loans.

Other banks contacted in the Lakes Region Tuesday, including Meredith Village Savings and Northway, continued to have open lobbies.

Kristy Merrill, president of the NH Bankers Association, said banks were working to assist businesses and customers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“Please don’t hesitate to reach out to your bank today,” Merrill said. “Your local banker can only help you if they are aware of the financial challenges you may be facing. They are here for you and stand ready to help.

“We strongly encourage bank customers facing financial challenges arising during this difficult time to please reach out to your bank directly.  Banks are committed to work with you and do what they can to be flexible and supportive in the face of financial hardships stemming from the economic effects of COVID-19.”  

 

Athletic clubs

Athletic clubs throughout the region remained open, including Fit Focus in Laconia, Planet Fitness in Belmont and the Gilford Hills Tennis and Fitness Club.

Planet Fitness reduced overnight hours. Fit Focus closed classes and babysitting.  

Like many businesses, Fit Focus promised a heightened cleaning campaign. 

“We will continue to monitor our employees and take appropriate action to reduce exposure to other staff, members and guests if an employee is exhibiting flu-like symptoms,” the company said in a statement. “As always we have instructed all staff exhibiting any signs of illness to stay home.

“We ask our staff to clean to be even more vigilant in disinfecting frequently touched areas. We also want to ask you as members to please wipe down equipment after use! In addition we are actively working to have hand sanitizer available for use for all members and staff.”

 

Ski resorts

Many ski areas across the country have shut down, but Gary Kiedaisch, chairman of the Gunstock Area Commission, said Gunstock would remain open with heightened cleaning and a closure of food service, the rental shop, ski school and daycare.

“We are encouraging guests to ride the lifts with their party only or to ride alone as they desire,” he said. 

He also said business has been good. 

“Gunstock enjoyed a robust business this past weekend as well as a strong Monday business,” Kiedaisch said. “Our customers are telling us they want to ski and ride and so long as we can provide that and keep our associates safe we will accommodate them.”

Waterville Valley Resort also stayed open, while closing rentals and the ski school as well as limiting access to most of the base lodge and restricting food service.

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