CHESAPEAKE, Va. - "We are, as everyone is, relying on our community."
That's what Julie Curry told News 3 in April of 2020.
Her business, Branches Tasting Room on Starmount Parkway in Chesapeake's Western Branch area, had taken a huge hit as COVID-19 restrictions shut down indoor dining in Virginia.
Curry was forced to deliver wine and specialty foods she'd normally serve in-house to customers all around Hampton Roads.
"We're gonna keep on being innovative for them and changing our menu items out weekly and offering specials," she said at the time.
One year later, indoor business has long been open. Branches survived and always working to get people out with menu updates, live music and more.
"We're super excited," Curry told News 3 on Tuesday. "This week is definitely going to bring a lot of excitement, challenges too, but we feel like we're ready."
On Friday, May 28, Curry can start bringing in more people if she pleases; Virginia's social distancing rules are set to expire. Mask-wearing is no longer required for fully vaccinated people.
"Virginians have been doing the right things and we're seeing the results," said Northam in a video statement released earlier this morning. "It's either a shot or a mask. It's up to you."
Virginia's state of emergency regarding COVID-19 is set to expire June 30.
Curry says she's planning to add more bar seating and an additional table in her 1,600 square foot space. She also has seating outdoors.
"Friendships are made and they're always made over wine," she says of her customers.
Curry is also planning to bring in musicians Thursday and Friday for the start of Memorial Day weekend.