'We are ready for it': Oceanfront businesses optimistic for last holiday weekend of summer

Posted at 10:12 PM, Sep 04, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-04 23:46:51-04

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. - Businesses at the Oceanfront say it’s been a stressful few months financially trying to operate in a pandemic.

But say they are looking forward to making as much money as they can this Labor Day weekend, the last holiday weekend of the summer.

“We are staffed up. We are ready for it,” said Kyle Butters. He’s the general manager at The Rock on 16th Street.

He’s ready for what could be the last money-making weekend of the year.

“For a lot of my staff, it's relying on a big weekend moving forward. We really need them to have it,” Butters adds.

Just like in most beach towns across the country, the coronavirus is taking a toll on businesses.

“I’ve lived in Virginia Beach since 1986, and this is the slowest summer I’ve seen on the ocean," said Butters.

He was expecting good news this week from Governor Ralph Northam.

“I 100% wanted him to loosen restrictions,” he adds.

Governor Northam doesn't plan on loosening restrictions until after the holiday.

In Hampton Roads, restaurants can’t sell alcohol after 10 p.m.

“Anytime it’s 10 o’clock, people are tabbing out and leaving - our restaurant clears out,” Butters adds.

But that isn't stopping the crowds. Virginia Beach city leaders are expecting crowds to be larger than normal.

The Sweet Spot on 17th Street is seeing a lot of foot traffic.

“This summer has actually been one of the best summers we’ve had,” said Mery Ghatas.

She’s still hoping to cater to your sweet tooth.

“Enjoying our desserts, enjoying the last 'hoorah' of the summer,” he adds.

Ghatas believes the secret to being successful in a pandemic is serving customers who live in the community.

“They are kind of our backbone, so if we focus on them I feel like we can have a year-round season. We just have to be appreciative of the locals,” she adds.

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