By Dari Kotzker
When Hurricane Sandy hit, Spring Lake’s shopping district was without power for two weeks. Now that they’re up and running, shoppers are coming out to support the local community. Spring Lake business owner Mary Reilly spoke about the tremendous amount of good will towards small business owners. “I think people realize that how we are affected and how we contribute to the community, and that we’re all working together,” said Reilly. “So now, weekends we are quite busy and I’ve talked to other merchants as well and they’re finding that too.”
However, some other towns are not as lucky. Bay Head, a short distance from Spring Lake was hit hard by the storm. Most of the stores remain shut down, including a landmark business, Mueller’s Bakery. “It’s the first time that I’ve been out of work since I was 14 and I’m not out of work, we’re still working, taking everything apart,” said Mueller’s owner Brian O’Neill. “But it’s unbelievable, everything was fine and now it’s completely destroyed, so we’re going to put it back.”
Many Spring Lake businesses say the biggest challenge has been letting the public know they are open. They are using a variety of initiatives to get the word out.