A big tent that will house flooded-out businesses is due to open on Saturday. Hanna, owner of the longtime Capitola business Craft Gallery said that she's ready to move her things from the store at the corner of Capitola and San Jose avenues. She said that merchants remembered how quickly Santa Cruz business owners moved into tents after the '89 Loma Prieta Earthquake -- so she her colleagues decided to do the same thing.
Thursday was a bizarre day in Capitola. A few visitors walked around to take in the sight of merchants and homeowners in the Village cleaning up from the storm damage.
But more just went to the beach to enjoy the 80-degree afternoon. It was as if there were two Capitola Villages -- the glimmering beach town and the one that's trying to recover from last week's storm. The people out on the beach seemed oblivious to the disaster of just five days earlier.
The "Capitola Tent City" will be set up behind the Capitola Mercantile, where the paid-parking lot is just off the Esplanade. Village
merchants and city officials worked out an arrangement earlier this week in which the city will pay for the tents --er, pavilions -- and the merchants will pay for security of the site.
Still, there's a challenge to all this. Parking is always difficult in Capitola, and that will make quick visits by shoppers hard to do. Still, Hanna said, she's hopeful that folks will turn out to help out the suddenly homeless businesses.
As for the Craft Gallery, the main shop will close permanently and relocate to its current annex just up the street. Other merchants are in the process of deciding how and when and even if to reopen.