Businesses hope St. Patrick’s Day festival brings business boom
EMERALD ISLE, N.C. (WITN) - Some small businesses in Emerald Isle are looking forward to the St. Patrick’s Festival this weekend, hoping it will bring much-needed revenue to the area.
For Michaelangelos Pizza & Subs in Emerald Isle, the prep work for the festival started Wednesday.
“We are starting dough, cheese, everything to get prepped for the weekend. Extra boxes, everything,” Cashier Ana Polakouski said.
Businesses are depending on the festival to bring customers their way.
“It definitely gives some of our new people an experience of what the summer will be like because it’s gonna be really busy,” Polakouski said.
The pandemic canceled the festival the past two years, leaving business owners without a start to the tourism season.
“We just went with no income coming in,” Margie Tyndall, Top It Off boutique and salon owner said. “It’s a blessing to just have the St. Patties Festival coming back.”
Now that it is back, Tyndall is optimistic the traditional business model will look like it once did.
“A lot of people have gone to buying things online which really has not helped the local business,” Tyndall explained.
Thanks to the decrease in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, people can once again come together and celebrate.
“The restrictions have been lifted for most COVID and honestly it’s time. The community is ready to come back out, that’s obvious,” Alesia Sanderson, Emerald Isle Parks & Recreation director said.
While Saturday comes with a chance of rain, perhaps the luck of the Irish will overrule.
“We understand that the weather’s not perfectly favorable, but it’s Emerald Isle, anything can change,” Sanderson said. “So we still have these grand visions of rainbows and leprechauns on Saturday,” Sanderson said.
According to Sanderson, they are no longer offering access to rides Friday night.
Sanderson said there will be tents for people to escape the rain Saturday if need be.
The event will take place at the Emerald Plantation shopping center from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. There will be vendors, food, music, rides, and much more.
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