Folly Beach businesses benefit from tropical storm threat

By Valencia

FOLLY BEACH, S.C. (WCIV) - When it rains on Folly Beach one would think the island town would turn into a ghost town. But the opposite happened Memorial Day weekend. Local surf shops saw a surge of buyers.

"If it does rain, people got nothing better to do than to walk up and down the street and they'll come into our shops if nothing else to get out of the rain," said Joel Flores, store manager at Beachwear and Gifts.

The threat of stormy weather lured in surfers and didn't keep folks from enjoying Center Street.

"There's one thing about this particular business, which is the retail business, the people have already made the reservations at the hotels," said Flores. "And, then for the people who aren't staying at the hotels, Folly is a huge surfing community, so, you still have the surfers. If anything they are going to come down if there's a storm because chances are the waves are going to be pretty rad."

Rain or shine, local shops got the summer boost they needed.

"I've been doing this for 7 years and up until last year, you had the sense that people weren't coming out. They wanted to save that last penny and they didn't want to spend it at a retail shop or going to the beach. This is the first year we actually feel that people actually have confidence."