PROSSER, WA- Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, a local winemaker has put the wine bottles aside to take on a new business venture, selling PPE.
Ron Bunnell, winemaker, and owner of Wine O' Clock restaurant in Prosser. Now, a self-dubbed mask dealer.
He created Mask Man, an online shop offering PPE to locals sourced from his contacts abroad.
"COVID hit and I saw the short supply of PPE here in the United States I thought well we should get busy on this," Bunnell said.
Bunnell offers N95 disposable masks, disposable masks for children, mask filters, plastic face shields, no-touch infrared thermometers, and homemade masks.
Bunnell packs the orders and delivers them on his own to local businesses and whoever needs them the most from Prosser, the Tri-Cities to lower Yakima Valley.
"I noticed a lot of senior citizens that don't want to get out and shop for a mask will order from me... Typically I will deliver to their doorstep ring the doorbell and let them retrieve the goods," Bunnell said.
Bunnell said he has worked to meet demands and still keep a promise of 24-hour delivery.
Delivery to a Tri-City or lower Yakima Valley is free with a $50 purchase.
"I do take this very seriously and I realize that my customers need these masks quickly," Bunnell said.
For now, Bunnell said he will not let the 'Mask Man' go.
"I don't have any plans to shut it down I plan on doing this for as long as we are in this pandemic situation," Bunnell said.
Bunnell and his wife continue to operate The Bunnell Family Cellar and the Wine O’ Clock brand through the Prosser wine bar and bistro which is now open to limited indoor seating.
Orders for PPE can be placed at themaskman.net or by phone at 509-948-2610.