By the end of the day on Saturday Island SodaWorks Bistro owner Mandolyn Jonasson was crying tears of joy.
That’s due to the outpouring of support she’s had from Qualicum Beach residents and the surrounding community after her business was vandalized the night of Friday, July 21.
“It’s been amazing,” said Jonasson just a few days after she’d received a call letting her know about the damage to the bistro.
Located at 124 Harlech Rd. in Qualicum Beach, the restaurant’s plants on its patio, and several of its windows had been smashed.
“It was heart wrenching,” Jonasson said, adding that she and her daughter had recently purchased the plants for the patio.
“Thanks for making all the work I do, the farming and caring and busting my butt as a single mom with Lupus to support my child… busting my butt to beautify our community… thanks for making it all seem worthless,” Jonasson wrote on the bistro’s Facebook page on Saturday.
But since then, Jonasson said she’s had no shortage of people coming by to show support.
“People dropped off plants for us … and a woman who makes bracelets brought me a bracelet… somebody else donated some money… Farmers, local farms that we buy from dropped off flowers,” she said, in addition to many others who offered hugs and to help clean up.
But Jonasson’s business was not the only place to be damaged, she said.
From what she’s heard, another business found cigarette butts and empty bottles smashed in front of their business, someone had attempted to break into several cars, and attempted to pull open the front doors of Munchy’s, she said.
While some residents claim to know who did these things, and that it was the same people who did them, Jonasson said she doesn’t have much hope that the RCMP will be able to bring charges against them.
Staff Sgt. Anne Linteau with RCMP media relations said the Oceanside RCMP received a report of a break-in at Island SodaWorks and that “police are continuing their investigation and ask that anyone who may have any information in relation to this incident call Oceanside RCMP at 250-248-6111.”
Jonasson said her video surveillance was not able to provide any video that could positively identify who vandalized the bistro. “Our cameras were only able to make out shadow-y figures,” wrote Jonasson on Facebook.
She added that some residents who live nearby said they would do their best to keep an eye on her business from now on.