Speakers at Oceanfront play cool, smooth music to calm the crowds

Virginia Beach

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — If you’ve been down Atlantic Avenue or the Boardwalk recently, maybe you’ve felt a calm as you passed speakers putting out the sweet sounds of jazz — or steel drum Calypso, country, or other music.

The music is relaxing and smooth, playing from speakers between 17th and 25th streets. The music is part of Live on Atlantic entertainment programs put on by Beach Events, which is co-sponsored by WAVY-TV.

“I think it’s something that will be welcoming and inviting, and I think people’s behavior will be a lot better,” said George Kotarides, owner of Dough Boy’s on 17th, 24th, and 33rd streets at Atlantic Avenue. He is also president of the Atlantic Avenue Association.

“If we have a themed event here, maybe it’s a 70s theme, or Something in the Water, we have music indicative of this,” Kotarides said. 

The music that wafts through the air along Atlantic Avenue must be family-friendly and upbeat, according to the city.  

Joanne Johnson and her family traveled here from Missouri and talked to WAVY News 10’s Andy Fox. 

“I think I like it. It’s nice, smooth vibe,” she said while swaying to the music from the speaker above. 

Johnson says the music can be a crowd-calmer during a turbulent summer

“We don’t like to hear about the shootings here, and we got to get in the car, and hurry up and go because there is a shooting.” 

Amanda DuVal drove 12 hours from New Hampshire.

“It creates a vacation-like atmosphere. It’s not your normal main street. You can tell you are almost [in] a little paradise — that’s how I feel,” DuVal said. 

DuVal’s taste is different than 17-year-old Liam Malley.

“The groove for a teenager is not really for me, some people it might be,” Malley said. 

Johnson, however, says the jazz calls you to relax.

“It keeps the crowd calm. You know, with some music, it gets the crowd up, then the fights break out. You don’t want that out here,” she said. 

A smooth, cool atmosphere is what the City of Virginia Beach wants right here on Atlantic Avenue in Virginia Beach. 

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