Howard County -- A United Vision, one of the groups putting together a long-range plan for the county, canceled a meeting last night because of the weather, as did the Howard County Chamber of Commerce.
Supermarkets were busy yesterday as people, unsure of how long the storm would last, bought items such as milk, candles and batteries.
In Columbia, Papa John's Pizza in the Harper's Choice Village Center was swamped with orders yesterday from people who didn't want to go outdoors. The take-out restaurant stopped delivery for about an hour because workers worried their low-slung cars would get stuck on flooding roads.
Business was slow throughout the county. But some businesses tried to capitalize on the storm.
"Floyd is barred," said the sign outside the Old Mill Bakery in Oella. "Hurricane party!" read the sign outside the Phoenix Emporium on Ellicott City's Main Street.
"Floyd is fun," said the sign outside Main Street Blues. The bar was advertising hurricanes, of the alcoholic variety, for $2, down from the usual $4.75.
Down the street, the bridge spanning the Patapsco River between Baltimore and Howard counties was busier than usual as people wrapped in raincoats and slickers ventured out to look at the river roaring under the bridge. The river spilled out of its banks in several places, including on River Road just across the river from Ellicott City in Oella.
Julie and Christopher Brady, residents of River Road, said the water on the road was 5 or 6 feet deep last night at 6 p.m. Julie Brady said she and her husband moved all the furniture from the first floor of their house and hiked through the woods to a friend's house to spend the night.
Wayne Leek, another River Road resident, looked out his window and proclaimed, "It's more like the river than the road."
Sun staff writers Jamal E. Watson and Del Quentin Wilber contributed to this article.