First California mall reopens in Yuba City

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YUBA CITY, Calif. (KTXL) — The first mall in California reopened Wednesday.

“I don’t expect a large surge. I think people are going to be coming in here shopping for something specific,” Yuba Sutter Mall Senior General Manager Natasha Shelton told FOX40.

About 40 people waited outside the doors of the Yuba Sutter Mall minutes before 11 a.m.

“I’m looking for a freezer from Sears,” Yuba City resident Dee Pino said. “I have three kids at home and I really need a freezer.”

Not all stores inside the mall reopened, with only about 25 accepting customers.

Others like Claire’s and American Eagle are waiting for the green light from their corporate headquarters to be able to reopen.

Sears is another store that remains closed and Pino told FOX40 all of the other big box stores she checked were sold out.

“I’ll be glad when this is over,” said Pino.

The mall reopened after orders went into effect in Yuba and Sutter counties, allowing most businesses to reopen this week.

“We have implemented a lot of measures to create a low-risk environment for our shoppers,” explained Shelton.

Those measures included adding hand sanitizer stations and social distancing markers on the floors.

“We have reduced our business hours so that janitorial has more time to clean,” said Shelton.

All the play areas are closed as well.

Retailers are using their tracking systems to limit how many people can be inside their stores. But some businesses are still deciding whether people can try things on and how to handle returns.

The mall is also encouraging stores to participate in curbside pickup for customers who don’t feel comfortable coming inside.

“We hope that opening gives our community a sense of normalcy while still following the guidelines and creating a healthy environment,” said Shelton.

Under the new orders in Yuba and Sutter counties, masks are now mandatory in public.

On Tuesday, Gov. Gavin Newsom called the orders a “big mistake” and said the new county guidelines put the public at risk.

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