Dear Honey Run Friends,
2022 has been a rough year for us at The Inn. We continue to be plagued by staffing shortages and just as we thought we were making headway we took a few steps backwards. Then on Monday night June 13th nature dealt us a gut punch. An hour-long wind and thunderstorm left our grounds and the area around us devastated. The storm hit at 11:50 pm and by 2:00 am I was touring the grounds and assessing the damage. Most of the power was out in the county with miles and miles of power lines down and power poles snapped like toothpicks. Trees in the forest overturned and like dominos started a chain reaction knocking down tree after tree in long rows. Our driveway and parking lot was barricaded by 5 large trees that fell as though a beaver dam was built across it. The Tarragon deck was covered in trees as well as the back dock and team member entrance. I was overwhelmed with the damage and the clean up task in front of us. My first concern was for our guests in-house. How are we going to cook them breakfast and clean the parking lot so they can get home, I thought?
I spent the next 4 hours calling our tree cutting company, my insurance agent, a generator company (our generator failed) to rent a portable generator, our fire systems company (the fire alarm panel was fried) and walking around the building to make sure everything was ok, and I was not missing anything. At 4:30 am there was another round of thunderstorms. I laid on the couch in the lobby in the completely silent, dark, and powerless Inn watching the lightning flash through the windows and listening to the rain. Amidst all this devastation there was a beauty and calm to the sound of the storm. Around 6:30 am the storm ended, and the sun began to rise. I called our Executive Chef for advice on what I should cook for our guests. He said he would try to make it in and 1 hour later and countless circles, as he found blocked roads with trees and downed powerlines, he finally found his way through the maze and arrived at The Inn. What a blessing for the in-house guests. They would have struggled to choke down the breakfast I would have made as I do not belong within 100 feet of a kitchen.
This storm and the damage it brought broke my heart. We lost some of our largest and oldest trees. The scenery at Honey Run has now forever changed and will never be the same. It is still beautiful, just different. For those of us that know The Inn at Honey Run well we will notice the change and embrace the new growth that is to come. But beyond the heartbreak and devastation God brought us angels to help. Yoder Tree Service was at the bottom of our driveway at 7:30 am to clear the roads for us. McClintock Electric was on-site by noon to hook up the portable Generator. Bunker Hill Engine found us a portable generator and had it delivered by Noon. My 2 housekeepers made it in and started blowing the driveway behind Yoder tree service to start cleaning up the property. RG Fire Protection and Environmental Controls were both working remotely to try and fix our fire systems and spent days on-site after the storm to diagnose and repair the issues. Countryside Construction (our local builders) had a worker here helping us finish some time sensitive projects. My insurance agent from Hummel Insurance was on-site by 8:00 am to assess the damage and guide me on how to get help through the devastation. My neighbors in my community where my house is located spent the day Tuesday clearing our neighborhood roads and even the township road I take to get to The Inn. Electrical workers from around the country descended on Holmes County to help rebuild all the downed powerlines. I saw the face of God through all these people and their loving actions. The help we received and care from the community and our business partners brought tears to my eyes and restored my faith in our community. In this day of age, we witness everyone fighting with their words on social media and in the mainstream media it is refreshing to see the hard work and caring from everyone in times of need. In tragedy we become one community as God intended. Why does it take a tragedy? Why can’t this be our way of life in America?
This tragedy could have been so much worse. To my knowledge there was no loss of life and with all the devastation there is minimal building damage at The Inn. I thank God for sending us help and for protecting everyone through this storm and the cleanup after. We will have months of cleaning up and repairing the damage, but I know God will be with us through it all.
We have worked hard these past two weeks and have 3 trails reopened and plan to have the others opened in the next few months. I appreciate all your support and patience as we restore the grounds of Honey Run to its glory prior to June 13th. The shops are open, and we are back operating so I hope you will come and experience this journey with us in the coming months.
Your grateful and blessed Innkeeper,