Some of you may be wondering how Hurricane Ian has effected our coastal businesses. Unfortunately, our top store, The Franklin Shops is right in the heart of downtown Ft Myers. The owner's updated us after the storm, and told us a foot of water entered the entire store. We lost some of our inventory and they'll have to close up shop until everything is dried out and the broken windows are repaired. Pete went down there a few days ago and took some pictures of the inside and outside of the store (below). Thankfully, they'll re-open, however we are unsure of when that'll be.
Because of the terrible devastation on Ft Myers beach, tourism may be down for quite some time. So we are unsure of how this will effect long-term sales. A few years ago we lost all of our inventory in our Port. St. Joe location from Hurricane Michael. Tourism has still been effected from that storm in the Panhandle. It's amazing how quickly people re-build when they work together. The Panhandle is doing remarkably well for how devastating Michael was. We know Ft Myers will be the same.
We are very thankful nobody was hurt in the shop and that the damage was much less than what folks are dealing with on the beach. I'm sure you've seen videos and pictures on social media. It's really jaw dropping to see the power of this storm.
Our other shop in Ft. Myers called Sweet Pickin's was fine and we're grateful. Because this storm hit Daytona Beach pretty hard as well, we were worried about that location, but just received word that all is well there. That location was hit hard a few years ago from flooding as well, so we are so thankful the owner and us don't have to go through the clean-up again so soon.
God will always provide for us, and always has. We are optimistic about other income opportunities and are working to implement further income streams to compensate for the temporary loss from The Franklin Shops.
Others have not been so fortunate. One of the employees at our Sweet Pickin's shop lost her entire home. We are hoping for those that are reading this, that you'll bless her with financial help to recover. Her name is Dawn and she's a sweet older women that helps us maintain our shop. She's on speed dial for us whenever we need anything. She currently has a zelle account where donations can be sent. Her zelle phone number is 239-331-9777. She has been so grateful for the donations she has received so far. Thank you! Another ministry we would like to make you aware of is a local humanitarian non-profit based in Ocala, Florida. They're actively helping down in Ft Myers to get the people effected by the storm the things they need. Their Website is www.ob.org. Please donate whatever you can to help those in need.
As always, thank you for the continued support of our business. God is still good during and after the storms that come our way, and we are thankful to him for always taking care of us!