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Businesses in Southeastern Connecticut scramble due to Nor’easter

STONINGTON/NORTH STONINGTON – Typically it’s the end of the day when The Stonington town dock is full of tied down fishing vessels. However, Thursday the ...

STONINGTON/NORTH STONINGTON - Typically it’s the end of the day when The Stonington town dock is full of tied down fishing vessels.

However, Thursday the boats didn’t move all day thanks to the lingering nor’easter.

Weather impacts fishing all the time and also impacts business,” said Paul Butterfield of The Fish Market in Willimantic.

He’s at the docks every week purchasing seafood for his market.

“Usually, like today, I would pick up two or three pallets,” he said. “Today I only got a pallet and a half.”

That equates to roughly 500 pounds less than he would normally pick up from wholesalers on the Stonington town dock.

he said he knew when he saw the forecast on Tuesday that he might be in trouble.

“I ordered fish to make sure that there was some fish here when the boats unloaded last night.”

He said yesterday, the boats came in late because they knew they weren’t going out today.

“And, hen the rain obviously is going to shut all the shellfish beds down,” he said.

Too much rain from this system could crush a North Stonington business, too.

“The ground gets saturated with water and the plants pull the water up into the berries,” said Jonathan Edwards, General Manager of Jonathan Edwards Winery. “It dilutes your flavors, which is bad.”

Edwards heard last weekend the weather would be perfect for picking come Wednesday, Thursday and Friday this week..

“Then the storm came in and we hit the panic button,” he said.

So, Jonathan Edwards’ team harvested 30 tons of Chardonnay grapes on Tuesday.

“We called in as many volunteers as we possibly could,” he said. “We had over 50 people here harvesting and we had a winery laden with fruit.”

The staff pressed grapes all day Wednesday, Edwards said, during driving rain. However, their Cabernet Franc grapes must remain on the vines for several more weeks. So, it’s fingers crossed with them.

Jonathan Edwards winery bottles 12,000 cases of wine each year.