DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – New Smyrna Beach closed off beach access ramps Monday a little before noon amid the large crowds.
Daytona Beach had consistent crowds too and that kept businesses, law enforcement, and beach safety busy.
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Denise Stevenson said it was a perfect day to enjoy time with friends and family.
“So far, so good, we love it. It’s very beautiful, the weather is perfect,” said Stevenson.
For Samantha Santiago, a trip to Daytona with her family for Memorial Day was the perfect way to start their summer vacation.
“We’re going to go catch some seashells soon,” said Santiago. “It’s been very busy, but it’s been enjoyable so far.”
Bartender Jess Quineous at nearby Cruisin Cafe Bar and Grill said she welcomes the business, especially after a slower past few years because of COVID-19.
“We’ve been really busy. We appreciate the crowds,” said Quineous.
Police said they were all hands on deck this holiday weekend, particularly after a planned “Orlando Invades Daytona” event. Investigators say that event in 2020 led to fights, stalled traffic, and a shooting that injured two people.
They also put up barricades along the sidewalks near Main Street to make sure pedestrians were safe.
“This is the first year we’re bringing in the entire agency. So we ended up canceling all days off,” said Chief Jakari Young.
Volusia County Beach Safety said they’ve rescued dozens of people so far along the coast.