Even with the winds and rain of Hurricane Florence beginning to reach the Town of Elon, local business owners are determined to remain open throughout the storm.
George Katsoudas, the owner of Skid's Restaurant of Elon, has lived in the area all his life and isn’t worried about the effects that the storm may bring.
“My buddies are getting ready to play golf. You know it’s just a sprinkle here and there and there’s a hurricane floating around,” Katsoudas said. “It gives you an idea of how the weather is out there.”
Katsoudas made the decision to keep Skid’s open as long as the power remains on.
“We stay open because we all have to work, we have employees that need to work, but there’s people out and about. If there’s power, there’s no reason to not be open,” Katsoudas said. “We are here for you. We have everything from coffee to milkshakes to burgers. We’re in your neighborhood, we’re you’re true neighborhood grill.”
A few streets away from Skid’s, some of the restaurants in downtown Elon are maintaining the same policy.
“We are staying open to provide a service to the community,” said Morgan Baker, a server at Tangent Eat+Bar. “We really love providing good food for the locals and for the students… We just want to have a space with food and yummy drinks, so people can come out and weather the storm.”
For all the students staying on campus and the local community members, Skid’s and Tangent aren’t the only options.
Pandora's Pies, MaGerks Pub & Grill Elon, The Root Trackside and Subway will also be keeping their doors open.
“As long as we have power, and it’s not too bad and employee safety is not an issue, then we are going to be open,” said Kimberly Holt, the manager of Pandora’s. “As long as safety isn’t an issue, then we are going to be here for our customers.”
MaGerk's manager Justin Brawley echoed a similar sentiment.
"We decided to stay open to give people somewhere to go if they lose power," Brawley said. "We’ve got plenty of space, good food, great drinks, somewhere to come.”
But not all of the stores in downtown Elon are taking the same risks.
In fear of losing power, Smitty’s Homemade Ice Cream will stay closed for the duration of the hurricane. The re-opening of their Elon store will be announced on their Facebook page in the coming days.
Like Smitty’s, Acorn Coffee Shop, a part of Elon Dining, is also currently expected to stay closed until Monday.
Updates on all on-campus food options during the hurricane can be found on Elon Dining’s website.
All of the retail stores in downtown Elon such as the Barnes & Nobles, All that JAS, Enlighten Salon, Cynthia Huggins & Associates Interior Design and Simply Oak Boutique.
To learn more about the preparations local businesses and major stores made in the week leading up to Hurricane Florence, read our past coverage here.