Hey there, it's "guest writer" Alison, just throwing down a shout out for my buddy Melisa Mistler.
I've been checking in with her at the shop, to see how she's been stepping up to the challenge of being in the "Phase 2" of "The Reopening".
There are a lot of safety. and sanitizing requirements that businesses need to follow before being allowed to stay open, and I wanted to pop over and see if there was anything she needed help with to bring her shop up to compliance.
Well, I was pleasantly surprised to see that Melisa did NOT need my help in this department!
Did you know that Melisa used to TEACH state board standards of cleanliness and hand sanitation at cosmetology schools?
Since her shop includes a makeup studio with cosmetics and skin care, she's been adhering to these high standards ALL ALONG.
(Because there are other businesses in the shop, like alterations, custom printing, and classes, M3 Mall is not a state board location. But Melisa still follows the state board standards as if it were.)
At the beginning of the Statewide Shelter in Place order, when all but the most essential businesses were shut down, Melisa was given the OK to stay open because she was providing essentials like toilet paper, hand sanitizer, vitamins, and face masks.
And their decision to let her stay open was helped greatly by the fact that she was already thoroughly and regularly sanitizing door knobs and all areas of customer entry and contact- one customer at a time. No one had to tell her to do this, she was already doing it by instinct.
And she was doing all this with front door and curbside pickup, and even FREE LOCAL DELIVERY! Let me add- this is what really impressed me- she is not making any money on these deliveries. She's been getting up early and driving around - as far as Penn Valley- to drop off toilet paper and hand sanitizer to people who can't go foraging to 15 stores for this stuff! No mark-up. No delivery fees. She just has a heart to serve her community.
Now with the beginning of the "Stage 2" wave of retail openings, shops are given a walk-through inspection before being allowed to open. Of course she passed these inspections with an A+ rating! And she has updated her two Barbicide Certificates to show her customers that she is taking EXTRA care with precautions, and her knowledge of best sanitary practices.
She is now proudly displaying her official "OPEN" sign in the window, presented to her by the Grass Valley Downtown Association. As more shops are being allowed to open, Melisa is continuing to keep the previous- already high- standards of sanitation, and allowing ONE client in the shop at a time between 11am and 6pm Monday through Saturday.
And she's STILL making her morning delivery rounds between 8am and 11am every day- including Sunday!
She's taking daily mask wearing to new fashion heights! It's adorable and hilarious... She's been posting videos of herself putting together matchy-matchy outfits with her masks, and matching her eyeshadow to the masks (made by her resident seamstress Gaylene Miller).
I've got to say, it warms my heart to see someone working so hard to serve her community, and making the biggest batch of lemonade out of these lemons!! She's busting her buns with no thoughts of "what's in it for ME?" She has adapted lightning quick to the shock of having her entire livelihood "rug" pulled from under her, and she's having fun doing it.
I'll say this again- she is selling- and delivering - ALL of the essential items AT COST. No mark-up. While we saw some retailers (and individuals) jumping on a price gouging opportunity for these essentials, Melisa simply saw the need in the community and wanted to be of service.
The upside is that more people in the community know that she's here- M3 Mall was the town's best kept secret for too long, and now the secret is out. So I hope that when this is over (or closer to "normal") you will come back to Melisa and M3, and enjoy the services she offers and products she carries year round- like cosmetics, skin care, high-end supplements, weight loss products, and hair care, as well as gown rentals and tons of different classes and workshops. And in-store contests with great prizes!
Know that whatever direction this new phase of opening takes us, your are in safe hands with Melisa and the team at M3 Mall...