VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - Festival organizers, through coordination with the city, say they're ready for parking demands at the Pungo Strawberry Festival this weekend.
As many as 100,000 people visit the festival each year. Last year, drivers were not able to park at Back Bay Farms due to a disagreement with the city. This year the farm is also not participating. The Noblemen, a local non-profit, used to benefit from some of the fees generated from the lot, but the group will also not be involved this year.
Some drivers faced big delays getting to the festival last year. "It's clear that there was a perception that were was a whole new problem and I think that's unfair to say," said Capt. Dave Squires of the Virginia Beach Police Department. "We had the same resources. We had a plan in place, and I think we executed a pretty good plan."
There are five parking areas this year, according to festival organizers. "We think we've got a pretty good plan for parking," said Capt. Squires, who helped craft the plan. "Nobody wins if people get there frustrated, so our job is to make sure we are as clear as we can be."
The roads to get to the festival are narrow, which can lead to backups. "We urge people to be patient," said Capt. Squires.
The festival runs through Sunday.