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Friday, July 25, 2014

Businesses struggle after Sandy
(Page 2 of 3)
Brian Croce/Herald
Although Lynbrook businesses were affected by the storm, said Chamber President Bill Gaylor, they are reaching out to neighboring communities that have suffered much worse due to Hurricane Sandy.
The Fishery, at the head of the canal, and Wardon’s Deli, across from it, have yet to reopen — although on the Fishery’s front window, someone wrote, “I assure you ... we’ll be back!”

Lynbrook loses power, Chamber powers on

In Lynbrook, many stores in the heart of the business district on Atlantic Avenue were without power for 12 days after the storm hit. Chamber of Commerce President Bill Gaylor said that it is impossible to make up for the lost days when stores and restaurants were closed.

Bruce Levitt, owner of Mur-Lees Men’s and Boy’s store, on Atlantic, said his shop had no electricity for 12 days. He decided not to buy a generator because he kept being told that the Long Island Power Authority would soon restore the power. Levitt said he came into his shop each day to help customers who had scheduled items to be picked up.

“I was working with flashlights — I was working in the cold and in the dark,” he said. “There were plenty of customers that told me they drove by and saw no lights, and they just kept going.” Levitt’s store did not sustain any physical damage, but he could not make any sales while the power was out, and making up for those days now is difficult.

“It’s very hard to make back money … you don’t make it back,” he said. “You would hope that it would come back to you the following week, or the week after you’d be busier so you could make up for the losses, but it doesn’t happen that way.” Though Levitt’s business is back to normal now, he said, “It was devastating.” Mur-Lees is offering a $25 gift card toward a $100 purchase for anyone who donates baby or cleaning supplies through Dec. 2.

The Chamber, too, is reaching out to help those who were affected by the storm. Gaylor said that the group made a $1,250 donation to the special fund in East Rockaway to aid those in need, despite the losses many Chamber members suffered.

“At this point in time, the Lynbrook Chamber of Commerce has to help and support our neighbors who are in trouble,” he said, “and I would expect the reciprocation if it were the other way around.

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