NORFOLK, Va. - With good music, a better view and delicious food, the Waterside District in Norfolk is ready to fill empty seats for summer.
"We are here for the entertainment. We are here to give people an experience that they can't get anywhere else," said Chris Bartnik, General Manager of Blue Moon TapHouse and The Market.
The largest Waterfront dining and entertainment space in Norfolk is one of many businesses gearing up for the holiday weekend and lifting of restrictions.
Jameah Nixon, who is visiting the Mermaid City, said, "It's been a little bit odd seeing everybody without their masks, but it's nice to get back to normal-ish."
As of Friday, May 28, Virginia lifted all capacity and social distancing restrictions and indoor mask requirements for fully vaccinated people.
What could be a combination of Memorial Day weekend and the lifting of guidelines, groups of people converged in Hampton Roads on Friday.
"I had my citizenship ceremony today here in Norfolk," said Carla Vervrivde. "I almost didn't find reservations for today, and the prices went up high."
Bartnik said with the weather changing recently, he has seen a lot of customers flocking to the patio. The patio, which is an extension of the Waterside District, has everything from bucket pong to cornhole.
Bartnik said, "We also have cool swinging chairs that you can sit in, and then on the weekends in the summer we'll be doing live music out here. There are DJs, bands - things like that."
With more space to accommodate, the waterfront venue is looking to fill open positions. Open interviews are conducted every Wednesday and Thursday from 2 p.m. until 6 p.m.
"We are looking to hire front of the house, bartenders, servers, support positions as far as bussers and food runners," Bartnik said.
He said these are all people who will be needed when Miller Lite Hot Country Nights returns on Friday, June 4.
"It features local, regional and national country acts every week for about an eight- to 10-week run," said Bartnik.
While the masks will be missing for most going forward, some people like Geah Martos are still being cautious. She said, "I'm still wearing masks because you don't know, like, what other people feel."