VERO BEACH, Fla. — Businesses along the beach are getting back to normal after Hurricane Nicole battered the Treasure Coast.
“Every one of these Tikis were flipped right over,” said Steve Toolan.
Toolan is the manager at Mulligan’s Beach House Bar and Grill. They closed down last Wednesday at 6 p.m. before Nicole hit and reopened by lunch time Thursday.
“We made sure we checked with the police and everyone that bridge was safe,” he said. “We got everyone over, and rallied the troops and were open by 12:15.”
Across the street, other stores welcomed back their customers.
Gerre Rhodes has been selling fine men’s clothes on the island at GT Rhodes for 40 years.
She said she couldn’t get out of her flooded neighborhood after the storm, so her store was closed for two days. They had shutters up as part of their preparations.
“We needed to be careful,” she said. “Have we locked this up? Are we going to have a flood? Is everything off the floor?”
Rhode’s business likely won’t be around next storm season, and not because of the storms.
“Time for retirement, time for retirement,” she said. “My children are after me constantly.”
While South Beach has reopened, a lot of other city beaches remain closed Monday.
“I feel we were lucky, but it’s the same thing that happens every storm,” said restauranteur Dan Culumber.
Culumber knows what oceanfront working is all about.
WPTV visited him over the years dealing with storms, and red tide, as he ran the Seaside Grill for three decades at Jaycee Park, where the boardwalk is still closed.
“Frances and Jeanne, we were closed for nine days and it was back to business as usual,” he said, “and Ocean Drive was closed for about three months.”
Culumber said in time, the city will be all the way back to normal.