Central Florida police say they’re ready for possible influx of spring breakers

Weather has helped hold off big crowds so far

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – After 1,000 arrests were made in Miami with spring break crowds, police across Central Florida are bracing for more to visit the region.

In Volusia County, several beachside police departments said the weather over the weekend and early this week has held off a lot of those big crowds but they do expect that to change later this week.

Bob Davis, the president of the Volusia County Lodging and Hospitality Association, said local hotels are seeing the highest revenue for spring break in years.

“It’s really here,” he said.

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At the Hard Rock Daytona Beach Hotel, Marketing Director Susan Keaveney said they are feeling that boost but they haven’t seen anything similar to the crowds in Miami so far.

“A lot of families, a lot of people from Orlando,” she said. “This year we are definitely seeing a lot more, obviously, than last year but even more than we did in 2019.”

Rooms do keep selling, though.

“A little bit of thanks to the mayors of Miami and Fort Lauderdale for telling the young folks, ‘Hey, we’re shutting down, go to Vegas.’ Well, they aren’t going to Vegas, they’re coming to Daytona,” Davis said.

Although it would boost revenue even more, business operators say it could be tough to manage, especially any COVID-19 precautions.

“We actually have people on staff just making sure that people are wearing masks around the hotel,” Keaveney said.

Though it’s been tame so far across the county’s beaches with few arrests or incidents, Volusia County Beach Patrol is on the sand and using drones to monitor crowds and make sure there’s no alcohol on the beach.

“We are open at full capacity here on the beach. We do ask people to take some personal responsibility and spread out,” said Capt. Tamara Malphurs.

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