Cape Cod bracing for busy Memorial Day weekend as COVID restrictions lift

HYANNIS, Mass. — Despite a rainy forecast, Cape Cod is bracing for a very busy holiday weekend to kick off the unofficial start of summer.

Memorial Day Weekend getaways come as Massachusetts lifts all remaining COVID-19 restrictions on Saturday, May 29.

On Friday, tourists started trickling in on Main Street in Hyannis, anxious for their first mask-free weekend since the pandemic began.

“It’s very nice to see everything opening back up, and the bars, you know, back to normal life, so, we’re excited,” said Allison Griffith of Quincy.

“Yeah we might check out some of the boat races down at the harbor and go from there,” said Julia Olczyk, also of Quincy. “No real concrete plans, just hanging out in the area.”

Rick Juaire of Attleboro told Boston 25 he was planning to hit several restaurants.

“I don’t know, we’re going to do a lot of eating I guess,” he said.

Some restaurants are leaving up tents so outdoor dining can continue, even in the foul weather.

For restaurant owners, expectations appear to be high that the weekend will be much more profitable than last year.

“Yesterday we had a lot of students from New Jersey, New York, so you know, people have started coming. So I think there’s hope we’ll have a better weekend,” explained Narinder Thind, Owner of Indian Pavilion Restaurant in Hyannis.

Still, the Cape faces a seasonal worker shortage.

Chris Flanagan, chair of the Dennis Select Board said Friday that he hopes people will be patient when they go out to eat.

“Please be kind, please be patient, please understand that the server that you have might be waiting on 10 or 11 other tables,” Flanagan explained.

He added that while Memorial Day Weekend appears to be fully booked, the rest of the summer may be just as busy.

“I looked at the Airbnb and you can’t seem to get a short-term rental anywhere at the moment, which is a good sign for summer,” he said. “Rain or shine it will be a positive weekend for sure.”

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