Vacationers were back enjoying themselves and the sounds of children playing in the surf and sand returned to the barrier islands and bayside communities. It was in stark contrast to the silence of the last three days.
"We have a house down for three weeks and we here for the first week and we had to evacuate on Friday," Drew Dale of Doylestown, Pa. said.
"We were vacationing on the Outer Banks and we had to evacuate on Thursday…and once we got [to Ocean City], we had to evacuate here," Andrea Marinski said.
All along the shore, businesses were reopening hoping to salvage what's left of the summer season.
Stone Harbor's big sidewalk sale will be held on Labor Day weekend, but it may not be the same.
Wildwood's boardwalk and amusement piers were back in business today, but for many Irene cost them a lot of green.
"Those are three days you really can't get back, I spoke to a couple business others and when you think of the seasonal nature of it, those three days could account for 10% of their annual gross," Patrick Rosenello of the Wildwood Business District said.
Businesses may never make up for what they lost, but at least they were able to reopen without sustaining damage that would have kept them closed for a long time.