Oceanfront restaurants see more business with beaches open

Virginia Beach

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) – While Saturday was not the perfect beach day, the long weekend brought more crowds to the Virginia Beach Oceanfront.

As the state begins to reopen, beaches are now open and the restaurants can welcome guests outside.

Gabe Hurlock and her family came down here from Connecticut and she enjoyed the weather yesterday, but still has reservations about sitting down to eat at restaurants.

“While it is nice because it is Memorial weekend, I just question once again the consistency of people wearing masks and washing their hands. That’s still a concern, but hopefully, this will be a lesson for everybody.”

It’s a lesson that leaders at Ocean 27 on Atlantic Avenue are not taking for granted. Their venue — which can hold 500 people — did not see those numbers yesterday, but say they still saw a boost that they were hoping for.

“It felt great to me. We want to stay safe but we also want to make some money, get back to work, and what we do best,” said manager Buddy Johnson.

“A lot of people are really understanding about the things that are implemented and we have to be safe, a lot of people are thanking us for it,” he added.

Jammary Jackson who is in town from Henrico County with her grandmother says she is still not comfortable with eating out yet.

“It’s not an issue being outside but just for the simple fact that every single table is almost like, next to each other. I feel safe, but at the same time I don’t feel comfortable eating around people because we don’t know who you are and where you’re from,” she said.

Johnson said he understands Jackson’s feelings, which is why they do not take anything for granted.

“Just to be more appreciative of everything. You know, every customer that we get, we always say ‘thank you’ and hope that everyone is having a good time.”

Overall, many business owners say they saw the boost they needed this weekend and hope that with more consistently warm weather down the line, they can keep it.

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