Stores relocated from Eastfield Mall face challenges ahead of holiday season
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB/WSHM) - Wednesday marked four months since the Eastfield Mall closed its doors to the public after 55 years. Many of the small businesses that used to operate in the mall have had to relocate, but changing locations presents its own set of challenges.
One of the business forced to relocate was the toy store, A Blast from the Past and More.
“It was a nightmare. I’m going to be honest with you. It was a nightmare and it was also scary because this is how I feed my family,” said store owner Crystal Mendoza. “I cried. I lost…plenty of sleepless nights. I didn’t know if I’d be able to keep my business or if I had to close my business.”
On Wednesday, Western Mass News met with Mendoza, at their new location in Indian Orchard, just a quick five minute drive from the Eastfield Mall. She told us the move has created different challenges like losing customers and therefore money.
“Sometimes, I haven’t even made $500 in this location,” Mendoza added. “The mall traffic is unbelievable because a lot of people go there, not for one store, but for many, so for me, someone has to see my store, want something in it, park, get out, come in, and buy. It’s a whole other scenario, being on your own, other than being inside a mall.”
In her store, you can find sports gear, collectible cards, figurines, and even a dinosaur greeting you in front, but Mendoza has had to rely on different methods to make ends meet.
“eBay paid my rent this month and that’s just honest,” Mendoza said. “I have an online store called a Blast from the Past, so I ship everywhere in the world and it’s a significant help here.”
Mendoza is counting on the support of the community to keep her business afloat, especially now that holiday shopping is just around the corner.
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