Popular Modesto thrift store Buy Rite is closing after more than 20 years in business.
Signs posted on the doors of the Prescott Road shop announced its abrupt closure at the end of the business day Saturday. The family-owned store has been a staple for area bargain shoppers since it opened in its original location on Tully Road in 1995.
Management confirmed the closure, and said the business had lost its lease. Its employees and customers were informed of the shut down on Friday, when the signs went up.
Wes and Judy Schulz started Buy Rite Thrift Store in Modesto about 23 years ago, and own another location in Stockton. In 2012, their daughter Karen Schulz took over ownership.
This is not the first time the business was forced to close. In 2005, the store was shuttered when it lost its lease in the Gregory Gardens shopping center on Tully Road and Bowen Avenue. The center management did not renew its contract at the time to make room for an Ace Hardware store. The Ace closed two years later and the space is now occupied by a Dollar General.
A year after its Tully Road closure, the Schulz family reopened Buy Rite in the Briggsmore Plaza shopping complex on Prescott Road, where it has been since.
Buy Rite carries a wide assortment of merchandise from clothing to furniture, electronics and dishware. A steady stream of shoppers came in and out of the store Saturday afternoon with bags. Many had been going there for years, like Modesto resident Gloria Armstrong.
“I’ve been coming since it was on Tully Road, before my daughter was born and she is now 23,” Armstrong said. “Everyone is so sad about this. The employees at the store are like family. You see all your friends when you come here.”
Armstrong said she comes to the store nearly twice a week to buy clothes for her two grandchildren or housewares.
The Buy Rite Thrift Store closure is the second high-profile business closure in Modesto this week due to a lost lease. Across the street from the shop, the HomeTown Buffet shuttered Wednesday night after the company said its lease was not renewed.
The thrift store’s management would not comment on whether the business would try to relocate.