HAMBURG – Chad Sjulin is heavy into the clean-up mode at Hamburg’s iconic small-town tavern and restaurant and a little heavy-hearted, but says the Blue Moon will rise again.
A flood in the 1950s was troublesome for his parents and for the property located next to the city’s water plant. Another flood of 1993 brought waves of the muddy Missouri River to the doorstep of the original building.
Sjulin’s parents took action and built the new addition, much higher than the 1993 level. It was supposed to be out of the flood plain. At its new elevation, the Blue Moon became a primary destination for the people of Hamburg.
Sjulin: “The Blue Moon means a lot to people. If you got online and actually looked at Facebook, this is a place where there have been a lot of memories over the years. You can’t fathom the wedding receptions, the banquets, everything that happens here in town – a lot of the stuff has happened here at the moon.”
When the Missouri River levee breached this spring, the water came in fast. It exceeded the height of sandbags at the water plant, surged over the 1993 level. The original building was covered and the elevated floor of the new addition was three feet under water.
Sjulin: “It’s something that’s been here my whole life. I’m almost 50 years old and this has been a stable for the town. It’s going to rise again. We will actually bring back at least the building we had built in ’93.”
He said repairing the building may be an easier task than repairing damage done to the community in terms of its people. Many people who work outside of town are now thinking about moving away for good and Sjulin says he has heard plenty of talk from businesses about their ability to rebound.
Sjulin: “There’s a lot of businesses south of here. You know, both our grain elevators, Manildra, John Deere … it’s tough.