GREAT FALLS — Malmstrom Air Force Base announced on Thursday that it has implemented designated shopping hours for veterans and retirees at the Commissary, Base Exchange, and Shoppette; the change went into effect on Wednesday, April 1.
The following hours are designated for retirees, veterans, and all other authorized customers to shop at the Commissary.
- Sunday: 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.
- Wednesday/Friday: 9 a.m. - 3 p.m.
The following hours are designated for retirees, veterans, and all other authorized customers to shop at the Base Exchange/Shoppette.
- Sunday: 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. (Exchange and Shoppette)
- Monday/Wednesday/Friday: 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. (Exchange and Shoppette)
- Tuesday/Thursday: 11:30 a.m. – 10:00 p.m. (Shoppette only)
- Saturday: 11:30 a.m. – 11:59 p.m. (Shoppette only)
Colonel Jennifer Reeves, the commander of the 341st Missile Wing at Malmstrom, said in a news release, “We understand that these restrictions may inconvenience our veteran and retiree members of the Malmstrom community. In collaboration with our mission partners like the Exchange and Commissary, we are doing everything we can to help minimize the spread of COVID-19 and continue to carry out our important mission of strategic deterrence.”
Last week, officials at Malmstrom increased public health measures to curb the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus). A news release from Malmstrom says that the base raised its Health Protection Condition (HPCON) to Charlie from Bravo on March 25 in accordance with a Secretary of the Air Force directive designed to "more actively combat the spread of COVID-19 across the Department of the Air Force and our local communities."
The HPCON Charlie designation indicates a "substantial health threat" which requires heightened measures such as stricter guidelines on social distancing and shelter-in-place procedures with the following exceptions: obtaining food, caring for a relative or family member, seeking necessary health care, or going to an essential job.
To limit the risks associated with COVID-19, Malmstrom AFB is implementing further measures to reduce the spread of the virus. They include the following:
- Child Development Center/Youth Center will close at the end of the day on March 26.
- Scheduled youth programs have been canceled.
- Commissary/Exchange may enact metering/limiting the number of customers in the store. They may also begin designating hours specifically for non-active duty members.
- Other measures and closures are being considered, but have not been implemented yet.