‘I have no other option’: Wilmington gym to reopen despite restrictions


WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Fitness centers and gyms remain closed across the state of North Carolina. It has one local business owner taking matters into his own hands.

“I’ve been put in a situation where I have no other option than to open up,” Muscleworx owner Jason Morgan said. “So,that’s exactly what I plan on doing.”

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Muscleworx Fitness is a privately owned workout facility in Wilmington. It was one of many gyms that forced to close due to the coronavirus outbreak. Morgan tells us after exhausting his financial relief options or lack there of, he is choosing to reopen his business even with the executive order from the Governor still in place.

“The way I’m taxed has disqualified me from the P-P-P plan, I have applied for the S-B-A loans, I have received nothing,” Morgan said. “There’s just no money.”

In a business like his, Morgan says they were never even given the option to show they were strictly following CDC guidelines. Protocols they had in place well before they forced to close.

“At our busiest, we maybe have 12 to 15 people in here at our busiest moment of the day,” Morgan said. “Most of the time it’s four, five, or six people in 9,000 square feet. We social distance.”

Musclesworx Fitness plans to open back up Thursday morning operating from 6:00 a.m to 6:00 p.m. Morgan says he knows that he may get a visit from local law enforcement and most likely a citation. He states there will be no push back on his part, he ultimately sees this as something that will eventually be decided in court.

“They will just be doing their job, but they can expect anything legal from that citation to run it’s course,” Morgan said. “I’m going to let my attorney handle it and I mean they’ve given me no option.”

Governor Roy Cooper’s most recent Stay-At-Home order extension states that gyms shall remain closed throughout “phase one” of the reopen North Carolina plan that may begin on May 8.