On one hand, life in a small town means everyone knows everyone's business.
On the other, it means they all know when to pitch in to support each other.
Port Royal residents are coming together this weekend to help a longtime business owner battling breast cancer move back to her original store.
"She's very much loved, and a lot of people are coming to help out," friend Terry Lee said of Nuances owner Nancy Harris Vista. "She's doing her own personal battle, and we're looking at this as a positive thing for her to get to back to where she began."
Harris Vista has operated her clothing, jewelry and gift boutique at 703 Paris Ave. since a small fire in 2011 forced her to move from 709 Paris Ave.
People pitched in then to help, as well, Harris Vista said, making it possible for her to reopen in time for the annual Softshell Crab Festival that year.
In fact, residents of Port Royal have been supportive since she moved to town more than two decades ago.
She and her husband were fixing up the rundown home they bought and realized the trash they cleared out every night disappeared. Harris Vista came home early one night to find neighbors hauling away the rubbish. They told her they were just excited to have a young couple move in and renovate.
"Port Royal attracts a special kind of person," Harris Vista said.
The store move will take her full-circle, Lee said, bringing her back to the building at 918 8th St. where Harris Vista first opened Lollygags a decade ago. Some of Harris Vista's businesses have included Butter Beans, Port Royal Trading Co. and part ownership in Moondoggies Cafe & Grill.
Lee, who helped organize the move, called her friend "probably the best mouthpiece for this little town. ... She knows the history inside and out. She can talk for hours on end. And she can sell a fur coat to a grizzly bear."
Close friends and store workers will help Harris Vista with the packing and preparations Saturday night and Sunday morning. At least 30 people and several golf carts are expected at the Sunday afternoon moving party.
"It's people pitching in for no other reason other than to help a neighbor," friend Mare Baracco Deckard said. "We want to make this about more than the cancer. We want to make it about the candid spirit that is Nancy Vista."
In other changes about town:
- State Farm insurance agent Andy Corriveau is building a mixed-use office and apartment complex at Greenlawn and Pearl streets in the Beaufort Town Center, 2015 Boundary St. A groundbreaking was Wednesday. His current office is at 1110 Pick Pocket Plantation Drive.
The brick building will be similar to ones in downtown Beaufort, with the State Farm office on the first floor and two apartments on the second. The property has room for a second building.
Information: 843-524-1717, statefarm.com.
"We'll have a little Southern, a little local and a little heart-healthy," he said.
Map: Places About TownFollow reporter Erin Moody at twitter.com/IPBG_Erin.
- Paving in Beaufort ahead of schedule
- In aftermath of fire, Port Royal shop owner plans to 'keep on getting up', March 17, 2011
- Home goods store Nuances opens in Port Royal, May 16, 2010