Snow ball stand helps couple rebuild after Katrina

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - By Elizabeth Vowell – email

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - For Linda Wolford and her husband, Mike, the memory of Hurricane Katrina and its devastation are still fresh, even five years later. When they returned to their home in Diamondhead after the storm, they found their house destroyed.

"Our entire community had disappeared," Wolford remembered. "There was very literally nothing left."

They immediately started planning for a new house, but problems with insurance and the cost of construction have kept the house from being completed. To add to their troubles, the couple also lost business in their respective careers. That's when they came up with a new plan.

"I thought, 'Well, we have to do something to try and generate some income and to keep us from feeling so downtrodden.'"

So three months ago, Welford and her husband decided to do something she's wanted to do for 30 years. They opened a snow ball stand in Gulfport.

"It sounds silly, but it really does help to bring some joy to other people and to have them reciprocate that to me," said Wolford.

Beach House Snow Balls (located on Landon Road, north of I-10) specializes in gourmet and sugar free frozen treats. And it already has a steady following.

"We've been here practically every day since we've found it," said regular customer Marianne Maxfield.

For the Wolfords, serving up snow balls isn't just about yummy treats. It's about moving on to better times.

"It still hurts all the things that have happened, but I just feel that my faith has been so much a part of getting through this without losing hope. So it's really, it's a very healing type of thing, " Wolford said.

Copyright 2010 WLOX. All rights reserved.