NEAR WATERVILLE, Minn. (FOX 47) – It’s been three weeks since tornadoes tore through Southeast Minnesota.
Communities continue to clean up, including the town of Waterville. A campground was in the direct path of one tornado on September 20.
Kamp Dels shared surveillance video of their main entrance that shows just how powerful that tornado was.
Miraculously, no one was hurt.
“There was a lot of damage and I just remember [my dad] saying I’ve never seen anything like this before,” said Grant Pope, who works at Kamp Dels.
“There was 113 reported either slightly damaged to destroyed. There was one house that was completely destroyed,” said Dan Guarrero, a Public Information Officer with the city’s Emergency Management Team.
The city was without power for several days.
Pope walked us through what was on the surveillance footage before the power went out, and the feed ended.
“Right now that white wave is already coming across, and then it just hits. It hits in two stages, you get the first stage and then when the second stage hit everything almost just goes white,” he said. “And here comes the second stage where it just really starts streaming across.”
Pope was at his home in his basement at the time. His parents were at the campgrounds.
After the tornado plowed through, he said he called his dad.
“He was in the process of going from house to house, from camper to camper to make sure everybody’s okay,” said Pope. “And I could just tell from the shakiness of his voice – my dad’s a confident individual, but at that time – that things were’t good.”
Hundreds of trees went down, but the community kept its chin up. They rallied, and helped Kamp Dels clean up.
“Ultimately we’ve just really come together. The community, a small town community of Waterville is just absolutely incredible,” said Pope. “Everybody that’s reached out to help us in different ways, they’ve fed our crews, they’ve put us in their thoughts, their prayers and just all those little things that keep you positive is amazing.”
Guarrero said 98 people came to help after the tornado. Pope said they’ll continue to clean up and plan to open again next year on Memorial Day weekend.