MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — All the people who’ve been filling sandbags to protect homes and businesses in Prior Lake, Minn. are now bracing for this rain.
The south metro city is experiencing the worst flooding the community has seen in 30 years. Fifty homes on and near the lake have been impacted so far.
Neighbors upped their sandbagging efforts ahead of the weekend’s stormy forecast.
“It’s kind of like a slow, like, creepy spider coming at you and you’re like tied down and can’t do a thing,” said resident Debra Brei. “It’s coming to get you and there’s nothing you can do.”
She lives in the Oakland Beach neighborhood on Whitney Circle, where people are dealing with flooded yards and basements.
One neighbor nearby lost their home. And up until Friday night, the water in the street was deep enough to kayak in.
“It was up above my knees when I would come home from work,” Brei said.
While stormy weather threatens to make a bad situation worse, the neighbors refuse to sit back and watch.
“Scary, that’s why we’re upping the sandbags,” said resident Nanci Brezinski.
Dozens of people waded through the sloppy mess and built taller, sturdier dikes to protect the homes Saturday morning.
They brought in a mega water pump and pumped thousands of gallons of water out of the street back into the lake.
“It’s amazing,” Brei said. “I could cry.”
She joked that she’ll no longer have to wear hip waders to get to her car and go to work. But this is far from over. The city predicts water levels could remain like this for weeks.
It’s a headache for those who live on the lake, and a bummer for those who want to enjoy it.
“We can’t go boating, can’t get the boats out from under the canopies,” Brezinski said. “Amen that there’s no wake, but it’s summer. Everybody wants to go boating and skiing and having fun, and here we are.”
The city of Prior Lake has already canceled its annual Fourth of July Boat Parade.
It’s still planning on holding a fireworks celebration but it a different location – a parking lot at Lakefront Park.