Damage left by Hurricane Harvey takes toll on businesses in Port Aransas during spring break

Some businesses not ready for visitors

By Courtney Friedman - VJ, Reporter

PORT ARANSAS, Texas - Six months after Hurricane Harvey ravaged the city of Port Aransas, only some businesses are able to welcome spring break visitors, a big blow for owners who have been working hard to prepare for the profitable season.

Harvey destroyed possessions and homes, and now it’s taking business away from owners in the city.

Leslie de Jager is from San Antonio, but for years, her rental house in Port Aransas has served as a source of income.

“The water came straight in two sliding doors here that were sealed and locked, and it basically knocked them in completely. And then upstairs, we had the roof tiles, they blew off. The top of that tree landed in that deck in the back,” she said.

Spring break has always been one of the city’s most profitable holidays, but this year, many business owners and renters just couldn’t finish their repairs on time.

“We’ve been trying to rush, but I mean, there’s only so much you can do as the homeowner,” de Jager said. “You’re dependent on contractors. You’re dependent on weather, and we’ve had a crazy rainy winter this year, which has really deterred a lot of people from getting as much progress done.”

Seeing the city fill with visitors this week has filled de Jager with hope.

“I’m surprised, but I’m glad,” she said.

Many business owners said they were nervous about spring break, but there are a lot of visitors on their vacation in Port Aransas already.

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