Some businesses working to bounce back after Hurricane Michael

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GULF COAST, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - Some of our favorite food spots in the Panhandle may have been left unrecognizable after Hurricane Michael.

While some are back up and running, others, like Toucan's on the Beach, are preparing to rise from the sand, rather than the ashes.

"Toucan's is a landmark, that is for sure, and we are a thousand percent committed to rebuilding," Panama City Commissioner and Toucan's co-owner Jenna Haligas said.

She said the Mexico Beach spot will come back whatever it takes.

"If we have to put a deck out there and a food truck until we can get it built back up, then that's what we're planning on doing," Haligas said.

Closed prior to Hurricane Michael, Haligas also talked to us about the state of the Buccaneer Beach Motel.

She said a wing of the motel will be torn down. The order was made before Hurricane Michael. She also said there's an order for asbestos removal in the restaurant attached to the restaurant.

"It is unfortunate that it's in the state that it is, but it is in that state and we're looking to not just recover in Downtown Panama City, but to be, as one of my friends says, 'The greatest recovery story ever told'," Haligas said.

In the next county over, DoDaddy's, a seafood restaurant in Port St. Joe, opened for customers last week.

We introduced you to Warren and Eve-Anne Wall, also known as DoDaddy and Mrs. DoDaddy (or MeMama to her grandchildren) in October. They were working to pick up the pieces in their restaurant after the hurricane, but now they're ready for business.

"Before it was DoDaddy's restaurant, DoDaddy used to feed all of us neighborhood kids all the time," Samantha Naylor, a customer and family friend, said.

For some, DoDaddy's is a frequent stop.

William Landry, a regular customer, said, "We can make it on our own very easily, but we need each other. DoDaddy's is one of my go-to people."

DoDaddy's loyal customers say the restaurant's reopening is like a beacon of hope for the Port St. Joe community.

"Having this restaurant open back up it gives you like, Okay, everything is falling in place," said customer Bridgit McGee-Collins.

It goes to show that some shrimp, oysters, and good company are food for the soul.