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Hamptons business owners happy to reopen

Employees at Flying Point Surf and Skate in

Employees at Flying Point Surf and Skate in Southampton Village reopen after Tropical Storm Irene. (Aug. 29, 2011) Photo Credit: Erin Geismar

Storeowners in Southampton were happy to reopen their doors on Monday as sunny skies brought people out of their hibernation from Tropical Storm Irene and into the streets.

Cars filled parking spaces on Hampton Road and Main Street, the line at Carvel packed the store and people sat on benches, walked their dogs and went in and out of the shops.

But it wasn’t necessarily business as usual.

“People just went home,” said Lisa Lewis, a year-round Southampton resident, referring to the weekenders or summer timeshares. “This is dead.”

Lewis was out shopping with her daughter, Lucy, who was happy to return to tennis camp that morning.

“We wanted to get out of the house,” she said, adding that hers was the only house she knew of that didn’t lose power.

Amy Katz, manager of BookHampton, said her store on Main Street was open on Saturday but closed Sunday. She reopened Monday without any problems and said the store had been pretty busy.

“We were lucky,” she said. “As far as I know, none of the stores lost power.”

Valerie Revere, who owns Twist, a women’s boutique, said it had been a slow day for her and losing out on two days of August business was “extremely rough.”

“It will be almost impossible to make up those two days,” she said. “And today, I think people are out and about because they don’t have power but not necessarily to shop.”

But still, Revere said being open was better than nothing. In nearby East Hampton Village, most stores remained closed Monday because power hadn't been restored.

“I have customers calling me from East Hampton asking if I was open,” she said. “I say, ‘Come on over.’ ”

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