Boston's skittish Back Bay reopens for business
BOSTON — Rich Cambriello flipped sizzling gourmet burgers on a grill to make a statement about Boston's post-bombing recovery.
“You don't want to let anyone know you're afraid, and we're not. Nothing is going to stop us. The town of Boston is freakin' tough,” said Cambriello, 41, of Revere, Mass., a sous-chef for Bone Daddy's Burgers, a food truck.
Cambriello opened for business near Boylston Street, a thoroughfare authorities partially reopened on Wednesday, two days after the deadly bombings at the Boston Marathon's finish line. Other streets nearby remained closed.
Boylston is packed with upscale jewelers, clothiers and restaurants that cater to tourists and professionals from nearby office buildings.
On marathon day, it becomes the grand stage for hordes of cheering spectators who flood the city's Back Bay section to welcome exhausted runners.
Business operators said staff members displayed a mix of angst and steely resolve on their first day back since the tragedy. Few pedestrians walked the reopened section early in the day, though their numbers increased by lunchtime.
“We talked about whether to reopen today, and it seems like the right thing to do,” said Milah Jowers, 32, of Jamaica Plain, a manager at Paper Source on Boylston.
No one on staff appeared nervous about returning, she said. Workers at other Paper Source stores in states as distant as California and Georgia called or sent emails to offer help and encouragement, Jowers said.
“It was really heartwarming, considering what happened,” Jowers said.
Jack Winer, manager of Lux Bond & Green, a New England-based, family-owned jewelry store, said some of his seven employees were skittish because the store is close to the crime scene.
Winer of Saugus, Mass., said he could not open on Tuesday because police had closed the building.
“There was some nervousness among my employees when we were attempting to open,” he said. “But I think because of the very large police presence, it makes you feel even safer.”
Winer said most businesses, including his, close on marathon day anyway.
A second day of closures hurt sales and raised the question of when business will return to full strength. Winer said that likely won't happen until all streets reopen and office workers return.
An impromptu display honoring victims is a few steps from the store across Berkley Street.
Danielle Henrich-Brochu, 20, a Bay State College fashion merchandising student, visited the memorial site near Winer's store. Bay State's campus essentially straddles Boylston.
Henrich-Brochu was near the finish line on race day.
“My ears are still ringing,” she said.
The business closings formed an eerily quiet atmosphere in a typically bustling section of the city that she loves, Henrich-Brochu said.
“To get off the street to Arlington and to see hardly anyone on the street, where I walk every day and it's packed, is weird,” she said.
Jeremy Boren is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7935 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Newsmaker: Virginia Helterbran
- Medical personnel have plenty to do at Pittsburgh Marathon
- Kennywood Park opening day ends early because of disruptive crowd
- District 7 candidates for Pittsburgh council vow to protect poorer communities
- Nonprofit dentistry back in Wilkinsburg
- Scaife bestows ‘game-changing’ legacy of giving to region, nation
- Forbes Avenue jeweler’s embedded sidewalk sign safely slides out to make way for Pittsburgh Playhouse project
- Fire in Wilkins high rise apartment building causes evacuation of hundreds