This holiday weekend was a big boom for the local tourism industry. The Easter weekend is often seen by businesses as one of the first big weekends of the year.
This year, a combination of good weather, spring breakers, and the holiday weekend brought big crowds to area beaches. For an industry that's suffered during a down economy the last few years, local businesses hope this is a sign of things to come.
“It’s been extremely busy,” says Jason St. Clair at the Blockade Runner resort in Wrightsville Beach. “Its wonderful to have this much activity here at the hotel. We'll fill tonight - we filled Thursday and Friday as well.”
It’s been just as busy at the Sweetwater surf shop. “It’s been insane,” says Jason Baysten. “My drive here, it was the worst traffic I've seen in five years that I've been here. And I've seen an influx of people that I haven't seen in a while.”
After the spring break season ends, businesses expect a natural lull until Memorial Day. That's when the tourism season shifts into full gear for the summer months.