Ocean Boulevard businesses talk about varying foot traffic durin - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Ocean Boulevard businesses talk about varying foot traffic during CCMF

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - When crews started disassembling stages and tents Monday after Carolina Country Music Fest, businesses on Eighth Ave North were most excited to see the fences and barriers come down that were preventing drivers and pedestrians from entering the street.

"You had to go out and all the way around, so that really impacted on business flow down here," said Dean Nelson, who works for Recco Marketing at the corner of Eighth Avenue North and Ocean Boulevard. "A lot of us took a hit."

Nelson said business was slow throughout the weekend because a block of Ocean Boulevard as well as Eighth Avenue North were closed.

"I saw a lot of people having fun, which was great," she said. "I saw a lot of frustration from people. We were blocked off. The way they set up the event there was one entrance area and it really cut off the traffic going up and down the boulevard."

On the other side of the fences near the Boardwalk, certain businesses also saw low foot traffic despite the festival crowds.

"Business was real slow," said Alex West, a manager at Zula. "People weren't trying to shop. They were trying to watch the show."

West said the majority of the customers from the weekend were people working the show.

However, while retail missed out on the extra customers, she said bars and restaurants did benefit.

"I went to the bar on Saturday night and you could not move in there," she said. "It was packed, so it's great for Myrtle Beach in general."

Boardwalk Coffee House did see longer lines than usual during breakfast hours before the festival.

"We're normally able to keep up with it, but we just had a line out the door a little bit during that time period," said Deann Sarber, co-owner of Boardwalk Coffee House.

Sarber said Boardwalk Coffee House saw the positive effects of Carolina Country Music Fest, but she'd still like to see all downtown businesses feel those effects too.

"For the other people, we need to kind of think what can we do to make it successful for all of them as well," she said.

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