For a lucky few, Green River, Utah, is home. For most, Green River is a waypoint: a crossing point for the mighty river, a place to rest, or better yet, a spot to take a cool dip during a hot desert journey.
Much like the generations who came before them, Green River is currently made up of community minded do-it-yourselfers. Most in this community like to have dirt on their hands; they like growing things, fixing things, doing things. Most everyone wears multiple hats — they’re teachers, mothers, cooks, coaches, cowboys, and community volunteers. All residents share a common trait: they have to be frugal to live in this small desert town.
Every day, the town welcomes even more as the population doubles with the influx of a transient population of travelers navigating I-70, Amtrak, Greyhound, and the river itself. Green River’s hospitality industry continues to fuel the town’s economy, especially now that locations like Moab and Utah’s National Parks are internationally-known tourist destinations. The town’s hotels, restaurants, and gas stations that you see on Main Street employ much of the town, and the city and county have invested in tourism marketing to try to keep those positions filled.
Green River’s hospitality, service-based, and agriculture/recreation businesses and their workers are facing unprecedented economic hardship during this COVID-19 crisis. This pandemic could not have come at a worse time: right after winter, when Green River sees very few visitors. Many workers are furloughed during the winter annually, so you can imagine how this already seasonal economy is being impacted when the busy season has been cancelled. Thankfully the local, regional, and federal government have begun providing aid, but we worry it’s not enough.
In response, we have started a Green River Workers Fund to catch anyone slipping through the cracks. All donated funds will be distributed to Green River individuals and families based on need.