Some Fort Myers Beach businesses close in preparation for Tropical Storm Elsa
FORT MYERS BEACH, Fla.– As doors close on Monday on Fort Myers Beach, many of the beachfront businesses won’t open for customers on Tuesday.
Tropical Storm Elsa isn’t slated to make landfall here, but will likely bring tropical storm conditions to the coastline.
“The restaurant will be closed tomorrow,” said Andres Wirdma of the Sunset Beach Tropical Grill.
Many of those businesses closed up shop early on Monday in preparation for the storm.
Work was well underway at the Sunset Grill.
“We have a checklist that we have to go through,” said Wirsma.
They’ve moved all their outside furniture inside. Plus, workers tied down anything that might fly away in Elsa’s winds.
“We know what to do,” said Wirsma. “This is routine here in Southwest Florida.”
On the other side of the island in the back bay, Salty Sam’s Marina is prepping their restaurants and their boats, big and small.
“We take everything off the floor. We button down all of our rental boats,” said Ryan Vandenabeele, the Director of Marketing at Salty Sam’s Marina. “We tie up the pirate ship in a special way that’s on the big cleats and on the big heavy pylons.”
Given their waterfront location, Vandenabeele and his team take each storm seriously.
“There’s a lot of property here at stake, millions of dollars,” Vandenabeele said. “You do your best to tackle them. Then after that, you watch TV, watch them come on and pray for the best.”
Vandenabeele and Nate Lane of Bonita Springs share the same mentality when it comes to encountering Elsa.
“Florida’s gonna Florida. So we’re just going to do what we do,” said Lane. “Nothing we’re not used to.”
Meaning until Elsa forces him inside, he’s carrying on per usual.
“I’ll Florida until I can’t Florida,” Lane said.
While most of the businesses on Fort Myers Beach say they’ll be closed all day Tuesday, some said they might reopen after Elsa passes.
If not, the goal is to be back up and running for Wednesday.
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