Ellicott City in Maryland officially reopened during Small Business Saturday. Ellicott City’s Main Street was heavily damaged this summer during a major flooding.
In late July, Maryland and several other Eastern states were hit with devastating inundations. According to state officials, in less than two hours, more than 6 inches or rain poured down on Howard County including Ellicott City.
The rain caused flash floods, and several residents and drivers got caught in the rising waters. Two people perished during the storm. Along with the loss of lives, almost every store located on Main Street was damaged. Additionally, thousands were left homeless.
Many wondered, would the once lively community get back on its feet? About four months after the natural disaster, Howard County Executive Allan Kittleman, U.S. Sen. Ben Cardin, and U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings were present to reopen 70 of the 90 stores on Main Street officially.
Some of the retailers that opened their doors carried clothes, jewelry, fine art, antiques, and wine. Residents of the area love to say that Ellicott City has a little something for everyone. Moreover, a significant number of those same residents came out to show support for those local retailers. Kittleman said:
“When the flood happened, we know how devastating it was to everybody that lived here and worked here, but now that we’ve seen the fruit of all their labor over the last four months, the people of Ellicott City have proven to the whole country how resilient they are and how driven they are to make sure their city comes back stronger than ever.”
Howard County Councilman Jon Weinstein, who welcomed shoppers, added:
“I have been dreaming about this day for three months and a couple weeks and here we are. To see all of you folks, it is overwhelming, obviously overwhelming.”
Store owners spoke to the media saying that they appreciated all the efforts put into the reopening ceremony. David Carney, the owner of The Wine Bin, stated:
“Especially after the flood that we had, which was pretty devastating, it’s nice to see the community just come out and strongly support us and get us back on our feet.”
Mojan Bagha, owner of Main Street Oriental Rugs, added:
“We are very grateful to the community who has supported us all these past months.”
On December 2, Ellicott City will be having its annual Midnight Madness, “when there will be a tree-lighting ceremony and stores will be open until midnight” and residents are invited back to shop locally.