Rebuilding after tornado: McGregor tattoo artist stays resilient - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Rebuilding after tornado: McGregor tattoo artist stays resilient

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The community of McGregor continues to stay resilient nearly one month after an EF-1 tornado tore through the small historic city. INKspiration tattoo studio, which was one of the hardest hit, is moving into their new studio for an exciting new chapter. 

The tornado heavily damaged two downtown buildings, an antique shop and a tattoo studio. For one, it was the end of an era. However, for INKspiration tattoo studio owner Crystal Scarffs, this is an exciting new beginning.

Scarff was inside her studio when the tornado hit last month. 

"Tornado warning, everyone get to shelter, and I was like nope that's not going to happen, it's McGregor, Iowa," said Scarff. "It doesn't happen here, it really doesn't."

To her surprise, an EF-1 tornado hit McGregor, damaging and destroying several buildings, including Scarffs. 

"I think it was like instant," said Scarff. "I walked out the door, and I was like well where's the next place- I have to-that's immediately what I thought of. Well that's sucky that it happened, and I have to move on right now. And I'm thinking about what's going on. So I think it was the next day, I knew this was available."

Despite the building being reduced to rubble, Scarff managed to stay strong. Much like her ink, she too is resilient. Scarff picked up and moved her business just a few blocks down Main street. She's converted an old dental studio into her new space.

"So first thing we did we got a crew in here, painting, pulling out the carpet," said Scarff. 

Many who pass through town are surprised to hear there was a tornado that hit a month ago, because the river town has very much kept its historic charm. 

Scarff says it's not any one long-standing building that gives her town the charm. Instead, she credits something else. 

"The people are very humble, they're nice, they are kind, they care, they will help you," said Scarff. "They care, I'll just be working, they come in here, and they're like do you want help?"

Scarff hopes to open up her new studio by the end of this month. 

She has also created t-shirts, with the slogan "McGregor United." The money from those t-shirts will go towards helping repair damages in town.

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