A rainbow gave the owners comfort through the difficult times.

By Perri Ormont Blumberg
March 29, 2019
Wrightsville Beach
Credit: Maddie Pake / EyeEm/Getty Images

The day before Hurricane Florence made landfall in North Carolina, a rainbow burst through the sky in Wrightsville Beach, stretching out over the much beloved local market Motts Channel Seafood. On September 14th, Motts — along with much of the area — was devastated by the storm. This isn't the first time Motts has had to shut down after a hurricane. In 1996, Motts closed for nine months following Hurricane Fran.

The rainbow, perhaps, was the happy omen owners Alison and Gene Long needed. "My husband and I saw it as a sign that everything would be okay," Alison told Garden & Gun in a recent article by Caroline Sanders profiling Motts. "I know how silly it sounds, but that gave us peace of mind."

"Months later, as the family cleaned out a flooded storage room, they unearthed a yard sign they had planted at the foot of the island's drawbridge after Hurricane Fran in 1997, declaring Motts officially back in business," the Garden & Gun story continues. "On January 20 of this year, they hammered it back into the ground. 'We'd done it before,' Alison says, 'so we knew we could do it again.'"

Currently, Alison estimates around 90% of the town is ready for business following Florence's wrath. No small feat considering the storm was a little over six months ago.

WATCH: Wilmington Bridal Store Travels by Boat to Save Wedding Dresses From Florence Flooding

Following the area's recovery, there's never been a better time to use your tourism dollars to support coastal North Carolina.

Blink and summer will be here, so book those vacation rentals. And save room for plenty of fresh Red Snapper.