When folks in New Jersey get knocked down, they get back up again. Hurricane Sandy knocked us down, beat us up, surged the ocean upon us, and wrecked the homes and businesses we work so hard to build and keep. Then while we were lying there, the insurance companies kicked us in the ribs for good measure. …And then we got back up again.
Sandy picked up a portion of the famed Belmar boardwalk and used it to batter right through the doors of Eastern Lines. Nearly six feet of water came through to the back door. Sand inundated the whole first floor. Merchandise and displays were destroyed beyond recognition. The iconic Eastern Lines, which has stood for quality service and fun waves for the last 32 years, was destroyed.
In January, Belmar began rebuilding its composite boardwalk with added hurricane clips – better and stronger. Advanced beach badge sales went through the roof. Homes were renovated and families supported. The borough moved out 20,000 tons of debris and 111,000 cubic yards of sand alone. The Belmar Arts Council transformed into a Hurricane Relief Distribution Center. Like so many towns along the coast, the story of Belmar rebuilding has been inspirational. The businesses on Ocean Ave. are ready to again serve the hundreds of thousands of families who come to enjoy Belmar every summer.
Just like so many of us, owner Don Tarrant got back up again. He worked tirelessly to clean out the shop, and piecing together his own savings and a little helpf from Waves for Water, he was open again in April 13 of this year. It’s been a long road back, but the support has been incredible.
Competitors are stoked as well.
“I was devastated to hear the bad news Superstorm Sandy brought to Jersey,” said Florida competitor, Josn Nicastro, “but glad the community is able to regroup and the Belmar Pro will Be back for 2013.”
By the time the Fosters Belmar Pro tenth anniversary edition comes around, it will be nearly one full year since Superstorm Sandy knocked the snot out of the New Jersey Shore. This event will mark all the work that has been done in recovering.