ELLICOTT CITY, Md. - Holiday shoppers hit the streets on Ellicott City Friday night for their annual midnight madness event.
Main Street was hit hard by floodwaters over the summer, shutting down most of the locally owned businesses there.
Many people stayed out shopping past their bedtime, but they say there's nowhere else they'd rather be spending their time and money as we countdown to Christmas. Main Street in Ellicott City was filled with Christmas cheer Friday night.
Brenda Franz says it has taken blood, sweat, tears and thousands of dollars out of pocket to see customers come through her door again, after her shop of 29 years was destroyed in the flash flood.
"It's just such a nice feeling to celebrate midnight madness, be in my store, and feel in this comfortable place right now," Franz said.
Supportive shoppers filled the streets and every store was in awe of the stories shared of recovery and resilience.
"Just coming out here tonight is just wonderful, seeing everything open and all the people out here supporting Ellicott City, it's been great," explained a midnight shopper.
Maureen Sweeney Smith with Ellicott City Partnership says incredibly high turnout Friday night and last weekend for small business Saturday has given them a much needed boost. Something business owner Nicholas Johnson couldn't be more thankful of this year - the support of his community.
"It's hard, you sort of wonder if it's worth it, but then you keep getting well wishes and people telling you how much they miss your business or trying to figure out how they can help you and that keeps you going," Johnson said.
So far 1.6 million dollars have been raised for merchants and residents affected by the flood but much more is still needed. You can donate at helpellicottcity.com.