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Celeste Miles

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Despite preparations by residents and tourists, Irene weakened from hurricane status to that of a tropical storm by the time it hit the New York region.

Michael and Lancs Walsh board up a friend’s house in Queens as Hurricane Irene made its way to New York, Saturday, Aug. 27. Some decided to pack up and head to safer and higher ground and others to wait it out. Residents of the lower-lying beach community were on evacuation orders as of 5pm Saturday evening. (Julie Platner for the Wall Street Journal)

Stephanie Munoz, 23, and her mother Celeste Miles walk along the beach to see the stormy ocean one last time before going back inside to wait out the impending hurricane in Queens, Aug. 27. (Julie Platner for the Wall Street Journal)

Jonathan Fey paddles his way down Nassau Ave in Freeport, N.Y., after Tropical Storm Irene flooded the neighborhood, Sunday, Aug. 28. (Joel Cairo for The Wall Street Journal)

Residents of Freeport make their way through the street Sunday. (Joel Cairo for the Wall Street Journal)

Pat Sterner stands in a few inches of water in her home after her Freeport neighborhood was flooded. (Joel Cairo for the Wall Street Journal)

A fallen tree blocks Bedford Avenue near North 12th Street in Brooklyn on the morning Tropical Storm Irene hit the city. (Mustafah Abdulaziz for The Wall Street Journal)

Flood waters overtake a gas station on 23rd Street and FDR Drive, Sunday, Aug. 28 in Manhattan. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)

Darren Renatta and his mother, Beth, investigate East River flood waters Sunday. (Rob Bennett for The Wall Street Journal)

Peter Falsetta, 58, and Thomas Kim, 46, overlook the Upper Bay from near the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, Sunday morning, as the eye of Tropical Storm Irene was thought to passing over Coney Island. Kim has lived in Bay Ridge for 20 years, and Falsetta has spent his life here. Neither could recall seeing the water level so high. (Claudio Papapietro for The Wall Street Journal)

Glenn Sanchez of Tampa, Florida, plays softball in Times Square Sunday after the brunt of the storm had passed. Sanchez is a member of Elite Fire Softball, a team competing at the World Police and Fire Games 2011. The team’s Sunday game was postponed due to the storm. (Kate Lord/The Wall Street Journal)

Civilians take photos and videos of the New York Army National Guard 206th Military Police Company, based out of Latham, New York, as they leave New York City Aug. 28. The 206th arrived on the afternoon of Aug. 27 to help with Hurricane Irene damage, however the storm caused less damage than originally anticipated. The company was being moved to Farmingdale, New York, where they were going to regroup and receive new orders. (Andrew Burton for The Wall Street Journal)

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