MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Several Minnesota communities will see a longstanding retailer shut its doors in the coming months.

Eight JCPenney stores in Minnesota are part of a nationwide closure affecting stores in 40 states.

In all, the company will shut down 138 stores to cut costs and grow sales in its strongest locations.

“It’s always sad to see something shutting down in town,” said Shelly Broten, a JCPenney shopper.

For years, the JCPenney in Red Wing has been a retail anchor for the community.

“They do have a lot, a wide variety of items in there, a lot of housewares and clothing items. It’s fun to go in here. They always have good sales,” Broten said.

The company is responding to changing times and taking a new direction which means the closure of eight stores around Minnesota.

“Because I’m from the old school, I guess I will miss the large retail store. I don’t do a lot of online shopping,” Galene Lexvold, a JCPenney shopper, said.

The announcement follows a retail trend away from the large brick and mortar stores. Macy’s, Gordman’s and JCPenney have all announced closures in Minnesota, a state that doesn’t always fall to economic cycles.

“We’re actually relatively insulated from the ups and downs of the economy. When it hits us, you know it’s nationwide,” said Professor George John of The Carlson School of Management

Professor George John doesn’t point to one particular reason for the stores’ closures but several, including internet shopping, more competition within the market and changing times.

“Twenty years ago, I would have probably gone to one of the Dales and just walked around. When’s the last time one of your friends walked around a shopping mall just to check out what’s new? I’ll bet you not very often,” Professor John said.

And while the closure may be noticeable in each town affected, Professor John does not believe it will have a major effect on the local economies.

“Yes, it will affect the shopping patterns but like everything else, we adjust,” Professor John said.

JCPenney said it will work to relocate team leaders and offer support services for other associates.

The store is planning its liquidation to begin in mid-April.

The other Minnesota stores closing include:

  • Central Lakes Crossing in Baxter
  • Five Lakes Centre in Fairmont
  • Faribo West Mall in Faribault
  • Irongate Plaza in Hibbing
  • Hutchinson Mall in Hutchinson
  • Downtown Thief River Falls in Thief River Falls
  • Freestanding in Winona

For more information on other store closures, visit JC Penney online.

  1. Last time I was at JC Penny’s I was really impressed, I hadn’t paid attention for years, they really stepped it up. It’s too bad they are closing so many stores.