VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) – Thousands of tourists and locals visited the Oceanfront on Memorial Day, marking the unofficial start of summer.
“I love it, it’s just a great atmosphere,” said Joe Barber, visiting with his family from Maryland.
Many families biked along the boardwalk, while some played games in the sand. Several people even ventured into the water.
“It’s refreshing!” said Kate Hughes.
Tom Gill, chief of Virginia Beach Lifesaving Service, told 10 On Your Side that it was a calm weekend with only a handful of water rescues needed.
The weekend marks a boost in business for shops and restaurants along the strip.
“It’s been slammed nonstop, we had tourists in and out all weekend,” said Tyler Tinsey, a cook at North End Pizza.
While it rained over the weekend, that just led to “a lot of deliveries to the hotels on the strip.”
Skies were sunny all morning and afternoon on Monday. As some families headed home, crowds died down.
“It’s perfect, there’s fun people around to people watch but it’s not crowded at all,” said Teresa Krex. “We’ve enjoyed this very much!”
Teresa and her husband, Chris, are honeymooning in the resort city all week. Although visiting from Kentucky, the pair aren’t strangers to Virginia.
Chris is an Army veteran who spent a decade at Fort Monroe.
While enjoying their trip, they are also remembering what Memorial Day is all about.
“It is definitely a somber holiday,” he said.
“People need to remember that Veterans Day is for the veterans that are still with us,” Teresa said. “Memorial Day is for the ones that we’ve lost.”