PENSACOLA BEACH, Fla. (WKRG) — Business was booming over the weekend at Pensacola Beach for its Fourth of July celebration.
Many beach businesses reported record-breaking sales as business gets back to normal post-COVID shutdowns and regulations.
“Now that everything is back to normal, we are having a great season — a great year,” said Papa’s Pizza co-owner Michael Pinzone. “Last year was devastating. Impacted us economically. It was just bad for everyone out here. It’s been absolutely amazing. We had a record-breaking Fourth of July. We’re so excited.”
At Pensacola Beach staple Bambo Willies, shift leader Charles Owings said it was a busy Fourth of July and perhaps the busiest day of 2021.
Owings said the bar is still struggling to find workers. Many businesses across the beach lost staff when the Pensacola Bay Bridge closed after sustaining damage during Hurricane Sally.
But he was glad to see some normalcy.
“It was great having everyone back. We’re very short-handed right now with the pandemic and the bridge being out,” Owings said. “I think we worked through it and we all did a great job and hopefully everyone had a good time, but we were definitely very busy.”
Beach businesses will now prepare for possibly a busier weekend ahead. The Blue Angels’ Pensacola Beach Airshow is Saturday.
“It’s been the busiest weekend of this year so far — until this weekend coming up for the Blues,” Owings said.
“We’re really excited about the Blue Angels. It’s going to be an amazing month,” Pinzone added. “An amazing show.“
Officials say those attending the airshow should try to arrive early to secure a spot.