Cosey Beach is making a big comeback this Memorial Day weekend.
East Haven town crews and local contractors were hard at work in the weeks leading up to the long holiday weekend by delivering and dumping thousands of tons of brand new sand.
Sand was washed away and eroded by Tropical Storm Irene and Superstorm Sandy.
Crowds collected at Cosey Beach Monday, which is the unofficial start of summer.
Beachgoers will be able to tell the difference between the new sand, which is Ivory Carmel in color, and the old sand, which is reddish brown.
"It's very clean and new," said beachgoer Helene Dombroski. "It's great really nice for a change."
As of Monday, 7,000 tons of new sand was laid down in the last few weeks for sunbathers and builders, with 3,000 more tons to go this week.
"They did a wonderful job," Dombroski said. "Big improvement here."
The sand is expected to cost $22.90 per ton, and the work will cost the town about $229,000. Officials said they're exploring reimbursement through Federal Emergency Management Agency.
Michelle Lettieri's home was hit twice. She's still rebuilding after four feet of water rushed right in. Her deck's not done yet, but she's making major progress.
"It's wonderful. Wonderful to see people back on the beach," Lettieri said. "We're strong. It'll take awhile, but we'll come back."
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