NC - Tourism Industry Ground To A Halt Amid Pandemic
Like much of North Carolina’s economy, the $25-billion-a-year tourist industry has ground to a halt because of the coronavirus. And on the Outer Banks, where the economy depends almost entirely on visitors, the timing could scarcely be worse.
Local officials have temporarily closed the string of barrier islands to outsiders, just as the tourism season would normally be gearing up.
“The bad part for us, you know, we're seasonal business, and like the other 300 plus restaurants here on the Outer Banks, we're all in this together," said Ervin Bateman, who owns Sugar Creek Seafood Restaurant in Nags Head.
It was supposed to be open by now, but instead it’s locked up and all 46 of his employees are on unemployment.