Open for Business Despite Snow

Durell Godfrey

While most stores around the South Fork were closed Friday, several managed to open to serve those brave souls who ventured out as the winter's first blizzard waned.

For a cup of bone-warming joe, both the Golden Pear and Starbucks in East Hampton were open . . . for the moment. At Starbucks, which didn’t open till 11 a.m., Kasandra Lenihan, the manager, is hoping to close shop by 4 to get her staff home safely. (It took her more than an hour to drive to work from Shinnecock Hills.) Is it busy? Not really. “We’re mostly serving people doing snow removal,” she said.

Citarella in East Hampton was open too, but was not as busy as on Thursday when, according to Helen Guererra, store manager and company president, “We sold just about everything,” from basics such as water and dry goods like pasta “to last a few days,” to prepared foods and rotisserie chicken. And, of course, a lot of soup, including their ever-popular turkey chili.

Village Hardware, on the other hand, was going gangbusters, which is just fine with Bernard Kiembock, its owner.  “We’re like Manhattan,” he said, “We never sleep.” Between Thursday and Friday the store had sold huge amounts of salt, shovels, batteries, flashlights, sleds, fire logs, and, so far, one snow blower — for $699. By the end of the day Friday, when he predicts he’ll run out of most everything snow-related — despite two shipments yesterday — he hopes to sell a couple more. With 25 employees, his winter payroll is a challenge, so today’s snowstorm is a “shot in the arm,” he said.

Waldbaum's in East Hampton was open for regular business hours, closing at 9 Friday night, and was selling lots of canned soups, paper towels, ice melt, and sold out of snow shovels, according to Phillip Page, a customer service representative who expressed surprise that the store was "as busy as it is." 

One Stop Pet Shop in Amagansett was opened only for a few hours Friday as they were expecting a delivery. But a few customers showed up, mostly in search of  a salt-free dog and environment-friendly snow melt. Yesterday they sold out of the five-pound jugs of the stuff, but still had on hand a few 20-pound bags for owners who don’t want their pets to cut their pads on salt.

Oh, and The East Hampton Star was open briefly on Friday afternoon.

Happy blizzard!