The parking lot and lobby and were just about empty this afternoon at the Hilton Garden Inn in Meridian. That all changed about 5:30 this evening when Mississippi coast and Louisiana residents came pouring in and checked into their rooms at the fully booked hotel. Manager Steve Anderson says that they have had people calling constantly looking for a place to stay.
"We started seeing early indications Friday, and then over the weekend the phone was pretty much ringing off the hook."
Anderson says they've been through this before, so they've stocked up on supplies and they're ready incase they're without power for a few days.
"We stocked up on extra water. We have a restaurant so we ordered a little bit of extra food incase people are locked into the hotel. We ordered extra flashlights and lighting for the staff so we are prepared in case of an emergency."
Sister Jennie Jones who runs a school in New Orleans that was just rebuilt a year ago after being destroyed in Hurricane Katrina, found her way to Meridian along with some other sisters. They first decided they would ride Isaac out, but changed their minds this morning.
"We had a dear friend who looked for a hotel for us. We were sure they would all be closed, but we were able to get three rooms."