Astor, Fla. — Great news for Astor City: More than a month after Hurricane Nicole hit, flooding is no longer an issue. While water levels remain high, snowbirds are flocking the area as things gradually return to normal and boating opens up.
what you need to know
- Astor no longer dealing with major flooding concerns
- Fishing and boating, with certain speed limits, is back in Astor
- Astor businesses hit by storm, but owners say new year looks optimistic
“We’re still getting questions (about) flooding,” said William Knodel, vice president of the Astor Chamber of Commerce. “It’s drying up, cleaning up, repairing.”
Ryan Adams of Big River Marina and Lodge is finally back to normal.
“When I’m away from here, which is a few times a week, I basically want to come in and see if any maintenance is needed and make sure everything is in top shape,” said Adams, who owns the property.
A Florida native, Adams said he was no stranger to the storm. But buying this motel in Astor during stormy season is sure to present some new hurdles. It sits on the St. Johns River and was damaged during Hurricanes Ian and Nicole. But not like the others.
“There are other properties, our neighbors, that are injured and wet,” he said. “What we’ve seen here has never been flooded.”
There was some cleanup, but Adams said there was nothing he couldn’t handle.
“We’re definitely open for business,” he said. “People are definitely coming out of the woodwork. The big cold snap in the north has the phones ringing.”
But the big hit was his boat tour.
“The boat tour is fun, and it attracts a lot of people,” Adams said. “Often they decide they want to stay for the weekend or come back the next weekend.”
Current restrictions on St. Louis. The Johns River doesn’t affect the way he travels by boat, but they do affect the speed of the boat due to the high water levels.
As more snowbirds head south, Adams hopes business will continue to pick up.
Vessels are expected to remain idle and wake-free throughout the residential area and in the waterways that meander through Astor. These restrictions are in effect due to high water levels, preventing boaters from creating wakes and flooding people’s yards.