Reopening California: Here's what SF's first day of in-store shopping looked like

ByKris Reyes via KGO logo
Tuesday, June 16, 2020
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San Francisco took a step forward in reopening on Monday by allowing in-store shopping for the first time in almost three months.

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- San Francisco took a step forward in reopening on Monday by allowing in-store shopping for the first time in almost three months.

Sylvia Aguila dropped off her wedding ring at Kay's jewelers and then the shelter-in-place rules took effect. She's been waiting to come back to Stonestown Galleria ever since.

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She was one of the first shoppers inside, as Stonestown and other malls in the Bay Are opened their doors to customers for indoor shopping for the first time in months.

"A little iffy about it, I'm not going to come and shop until I know, I'll wait two weeks to see how the numbers are but today we just came for my ring that's it," said Aguila.

There was a short line to get into the mall about an hour before it opened. There was another line at Foot Locker. But for the most part, the mall still felt pretty empty. And even after the doors were opened, many of the stores remain shut. Some had signs on the door encouraging shoppers to go online instead.

What was obvious, more social distancing signs, sanitation areas, two guards at the door, barriers at the cash registers of stores and a lot of cleaning happening at all times.

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It's a cautious reopening, warned Mayor London Breed who went for a stroll in Noe Valley with her team and supervisor Rafael Mandelman. The walk-thru was meant to encourage others to do the same.

The Mayor stopped at Just For Fun to buy dominoes.

"It's important that we try to let people open up, move around, do the things we do but get people comfortable doing it with a mask and with the hand washing and everything else," said Breed who said she is looking at COVID-19 data closely to determine if businesses can remain open.

In the meantime, Mandelman encouraged residents to support their local businesses.

"We need to support the ones that are here, folks who have gotten into the habit of ordering online, ordering from Amazon, you really need to go out and patronize your local business," said Mandelman.

It's the kind of support that Nancy Guttier welcomes. She owns Nancyland in Noe Valley, a children's store. She said she has been able to survive through the pandemic by pivoting her business online and selling masks curbside but she's eager to have customers back inside her store.

"I'm really excited that the kids know now that there's like you know different types of shopping techniques when they come in, so they're not touching everything like they used to," she said.

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