Mall construction picks up

Francisco's Mexican Restaurant on the Stewart Street side of Carson Mall on Friday.

Francisco's Mexican Restaurant on the Stewart Street side of Carson Mall on Friday.

Bustling with activity, Carson Mall changes pick up the pace beginning this weekend as if daylight saving time and a cup of Joe are spurring a retailing revival there.

The Dutch Bros. coffee stand is first out of the gate, starting its’ move from the current parking lot spot to a pad north in the parking lot and away from the front of the main mall where Sportsman’s Warehouse and Bealls will open in just weeks. Andy Head, who owns the Dutch Bros. franchise outlet with his spouse, Jill, said the plan is to close tonight but operate from a mobile unit starting Monday morning while the permanent stand’s move is under way.

That “temporary use situation,” he said, should last about two weeks while the permanent stand goes to the north in the Carson Mall parking lot to a permanent pad constructed over recent weeks. The temporary mobile unit also will be to the north near the vacant building that formerly housed the Station Grille.

Joanne Holmes of The Carrington Company, the Eureka, Calif., firm that is the mall’s owner-operator, gushed about the switch from the various feverish preparations this winter to the imminence of spring openings galore.

“Isn’t it exciting?” she asked, voicing satisfaction with renovation results already done and finishing touches still under way. “It has all come together.”

Inside the space that once housed Gottschalks department store, renovation work for a 40,000 square foot Sportsman’s Warehouse and a 20,000 square foot Bealls clothing outlet is winding down before the imminent opening dates.

The Utah-based Sportsman’s Warehouse chain is set for a soft opening March 31 to work out any kinks, and a grand opening with ribbon-cutting ceremony on April 5. The outfitter’s sign went up outside the mall on the Carson Street side on Wednesday.

Bealls, which is one of the Texas-based Stage Stores chain’s family apparel outlets, will have a grand opening on April 24, according to current plans. A temporary sign announcing that Bealls is coming has been out on Carson Street northwest of the mall for some time.

Also going into the mall is Francisco’s Mexican restaurant and cantina, which will be just south of the Boot Barn and north of Paul Schat’s Bakery. The restaurant’s outdoor entries are on the Stewart Street side and the cantina entry will be from inside the mall. Francisco’s already operates a restaurant in Minden.

Gary Leiss of Minden, spokesman for owner-operator Francisco Sanchez, said the sign is up, a building permit and liquor license are in hand and Sanchez hopes to start serving before the outfitter’s end-of-month soft opening.

“He would like to open about a week before Sportsman’s Warehouse,” said Leiss, noting the target is March 20-25.

Inside the nearby Thai Thai Asian restaurant, also on the mall’s Stewart Street side, is a new companion Bobalicious drink dispensary venture that began operation just over a week ago. A combined operation of Norris Dagdagan and Kong Sombatsiri, it offers flavored or milk teas, as well as smoothies and slushies featuring flavors of various types.

Another restaurant in play eventually, as the mall continues changing, is the Carl’s Jr. fast food outlet in the parking lot, which The Carrington Company’s Holmes said will be gone from its current spot at 1315 S. Carson St. She said it eventually will locate at the south end of the mall parking lot on property north of the Stewart Street-Carson Street intersection.

“It will be moving to that vacant lot on the corner,” she said.


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