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Progress on Fort Myers Beach as multiple businesses are starting to reopen

Posted at 4:47 PM, Nov 15, 2022
and last updated 2022-11-15 19:47:53-05

FORT MYERS BEACH, FL — Progress on Fort Myers Beach as multiple businesses are starting to reopen and with it a sense of hope to Southwest Florida.

Yucatan Beach Stand opened up Monday with its popular swings.

They are open from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. with a full bar and a food menu plus live music starting at 2:00 p.m. each day.

Cash is only being accepted at this time as they continue to get the credit card system up and running.

Many customers were happy to be back on the iconic swings while sipping their favorite cocktails and enjoying some smoked meats.

Chad Meissner who works at Yucatan is happy to see people coming back saying, "It’s heartbreaking it’s overwhelming emotionally just seeing the people who survived I know quite of people who are regulars that didn’t survive the storm".

La Ola Express is another business reopening along Fort Myers Beach.

Hours are Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and Saturday from 9:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m.

The owner, Tom Houghton said he wasn't expecting his building to not be there after the hurricane but is trying his best to bring back some sense of normalcy.

Houghton went to Miami about a week after Hurricane Ian to purchase a food trailer and it took some time to get it all licensed through the state and insured plus he also made sure to have it wrapped so it looked familiar to what we all remember in Times Square.

"It’s great to see all the friendly faces and all the support from all of our customers and be able to help in our own way by feeding the crews that are here trying to rebuild our beach. It’s a step in the right direction and I’m glad to see some of my other business neighbors getting open as well," says Tom.

Tom said he hopes that once the debris is cleared he can move that food trailer onto the pad where La Ola was as they continue to rebuild.

Another business is Wahoo Willie's and it is open all week from 11:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m. until further notice.

Fort Myers Beach Chamber of Commerce says there are multiple benefit nights to help support local Southwest Florida businesses.

It will take place at Buckett's Wings & More This Week each night benefitting a different business.

10 percent of that day's sales will go to each restaurant listed below:

  • Tuesday, November 15th that portion of sales will go to Lighthouse Tiki Bar in Fort Myers Beach.
  • Wednesday, November 16th that portion will go to Charley's Boat House Grill & Wine Bar - Fort Myers Beach.
  • Sunday, November 20th that portion will go to South Beach Grille.