Some Wilton Shops Saw Boost In Business After Storm

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Cactus Rose Cantina in Wilton Center had a hurricane lunch special for people hungry following Hurricane Sandy. The restaurant was busier in the days after the storm. Photo Credit: Melvin Mason
Felix Escobar, owner of Tom E Toes Pizza in Wilton said his shop sold plenty of pizza to people who had gone days without power. Photo Credit: Melvin Mason
Une Minette owner Lauren Robak said business was slow in the days following Hurricane Sandy. Photo Credit: Melvin Mason
Wilton Hardware owner Tom Sato said Wilton residents are still cleaning up from Hurricane Sandy, but they're also trying to help other storm victims and preparing for the holidays. Photo Credit: Melvin Mason

WILTON, Conn. – Felix Escobar knew people might have a craving for some pizza after Hurricane Sandy. So it was not a shock to see business at Tom-E-Toes Pizza rise as the cleanup from the major storm continued.

“We got really busy,” said Escobar, owner of the pizza shop in Wilton Center. “We sold a lot of pizza.”

Escobar said the store never lost power when the hurricane hit Wilton last week and plenty of hungry patrons came by to get pies when they could not cook at their powerless homes.

The story was much the same at Cactus Rose Cantina, also in the Wilton River Plaza. The restaurant even had a $10 hurricane lunch special.

“My business went up,” said owner Katerina Pertesis. “We had no problems.” She was also busy on Friday, preparing for customers ready to enjoy an evening out after a long week of storm and snow recovery.

Something of a transition is starting at Wilton Hardware. Store owner Tom Sato said the shop was buzzing with customers immediately after Sandy as people picked up batteries, flashlights and gas cans to carry fuel to power generators.

“The stuff went flying out of the store,” said Sato, who opened his store earlier in anticipation of the hurricane. “Even after Sandy and people got power back on Tuesday, we were busy.”

More people visited after Sandy to get gas cans and supplies for friends in New York’s Long Island and New Jersey, where thousands are still without power.

People are also picking up supplies to clean their yards after Sandy as well as getting home decorations for Thanksgiving and Christmas. “I think they are getting back to being normal and they’re beginning to talk about the holidays,” Sato said.

On the other hand, business was predictably slow at Une Minette clothing store in Wilton Center and owner Lauren Robak knew what to expect.

“After a storm, you’re not thinking of doing much shopping,” she said. The store did donate 10 percent of its sales last week to the American Red Cross. Robak hopes shoppers will come back and support small businesses as things get back to normal.

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