For a short video showing the damage from Hermine, click HERE
Hurricane Hermine – you are not a nice lady………
Thursday September 1st was the last time for a while that we would
see the Island Room Restaurant in one piece. We did what we were supposed to do,
boarded up the windows, picked inventory off of the floor, moved the tables and
chairs to the pool side of the restaurant, the usual tropical storm prep to get
her ready for the evening. As we head off the island we have no idea that our
lives are hours away from being devastated.
Sleep that night was fitful to say the least, wind, rain, loss of power and
more wind and rain. Gina was up and down during the evening and started telling
me about some of the posts that were coming from town that were very disturbing,
friends in their businesses posting about a wall caving in, people being picked
up by boats on 2nd street. At daybreak when we could see I got up to get ready
for the trip into town, Gina and I live about 12 miles off of the Island in
Rosewood. Our front yard was completely underwater, so that meant that the only
means of transportation to get into town would be our 350 Ford 4x4 truck (aka
Friday September 2nd
Walking down the driveway to see about our chances of getting out I find
leaves and limbs and a 50 foot pine tree upended across our driveway. We are
told the earliest we could get on the island would be 10am ish. It’s 6 now so
that leaves me four hours to get that tree out of our way. Whizz, bang,
buzz-buzz it’s out of the way and I still have all my limbs. It’s always
great to have a chainsaw in the tool shed!
We make our way onto the Island and number 4 bridge with all the vehicles
waiting to gain access to the Island – thank God for a special entry pass to
keep the people who do not belong on the Island in this
situation off. We arrive at the restaurant to walk around to assess the damages.
Gina’s video tells the story without words. Our life’s work of 25 years
has been swept away by the storm, complete shock, despair, awe, disgust and yes
amazement are just a few of the words to describe our feelings and emotions.
For those of you who know us we are the perfect yin & yang. I am
controlled, calm and reserved she is fiery, open and gregarious. We blend
together to make a wonderful union. We will stick together and we promise to
ourselves and our customers that we will be back and better than ever!
We have decided to use this website to update our progress on rebuilding. Our
lives are totally disrupted our rental offices and gym were ruined and we are
going to rebuild those also. We will be able to rent rooms shortly because there
was minimal damage to the rooms.
Friday September 9th
Wow! It’s been a week! Many emotional ups and downs, tears, anger, not much
joy. We have many wonderful friends, employees and volunteers that have helped
us clean out all of the destruction. One of the saddest parts of this is our
wonderful employees. They are now out of work for how long? At this point we are
not sure. The place has come a long way, most of the debris is out and all the
ruined equipment, furniture, food, silverware, tablecloths, etc. Not much can be
saved; there were waves over 6ft inside the restaurant. We have recovered many
bottles of wine and liquor from under the dock and off the beach, I’m sure we
will continue for years to find interesting things. On a positive note, we can
rebuild it how we want it and make some very nice changes. We will have all new
wiring and plumbing and brand new equipment. Monday morning an engineer is
coming to make sure it is safe to rebuild, keep your fingers crossed and pray.
We now have our internet on in the restaurant and the phone number 352-543-6520
rings at our house. I am getting email at firstname.lastname@example.org
and soon we will have an answering machine/service on the 6520 number. We lost
all our menus, checkbook and invoices and if we had an event planned before we
are able to re-open please contact me.
Stay tuned to follow the rebuild of this great business……
We will be back
All meals are prepared to order in our
Enjoy your meal on our outdoor deck facing the Gulf of
Or you can enjoy fine dining in our beautiful dining
Take a stroll by the pool afterwards.
We may be down but we are not out!
We will be back, Cedar Key Strong!
- Physical Address:
- 192 E 2nd
Street, Cedar Key, Florida
- Postal address
- P.O. Box 716, Cedar Key, FL 32625-0716