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Virginia Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau

July 14, 2023 

Dear Valued Tourism Partners:

We extend our deepest sympathy to those affected by the commercial fire in the 2600 block of Atlantic Avenue on the evening of July 11. It warms my heart to see our community rally to support our hospitality partners in a time of despair. The Virginia Beach Fire Department worked diligently to ensure all occupants were evacuated and fought to contain and extinguish the fire. Our Virginia Beach Police Department did their very best to secure a safe space for our firefighters to extinguish the blaze engulfing several Virginia Beach landmarks. Ultimately, the fire burned for more than five hours and resulted in a loss of the structural property that housed the Maple Tree Pancake House, T-Shirt Factory, and the King of the Sea restaurant. We are so very thankful that there was no loss of life during this unimaginable event. Moving forward, the Trolley Lane on the west side of the 600 block of Atlantic Avenue will be barricaded off for an undetermined amount of time while clean-up of the property occurs. Please stay tuned for updates on upcoming potential road closures associated with the cleanup of this block.

Congratulations are due to Virginia Tourism Corporation’s President & CEO Rita McClenney on her recent honor from Virginia Business magazine as one of 37 Women in Leadership in Virginia. Selected from a field of 320 nominees, this distinguished group represents female executives in a variety of industries and organizations. To qualify, nominees must be based in Virginia and hold C-suite or equivalent positions at their organizations. Deciding this year’s list, Virginia Business’ editorial staff considered factors such as overall professional accomplishments, civic engagement, mentoring and breaking glass ceilings. To read the entire article, click here.  Congratulations, Rita!

CVB Sales Activity & News - This week, Amy Overstreet is attending a new show by Northstar Meetings Group, Small Boutique Meetings, in Franklin, TN where she will be hosting a Beach Break and has 20 one-on-one appointments with planners from across the nation. Dee Mittman is working on finalizing a deal by enlisting the help of City Manager Patrick Duhaney and Centerplate’s Chef Desiree to win a multicultural piece of business. Jamie Rawls is in Harrisonburg, VA meeting with members of the VA Society of Association Executives who own or work for an Association Management Company for their annual summit. Sports Tourism is gearing up for another action-packed week as Virginia Beach hosts three highly-anticipated sporting events, showcasing the best of softball and basketball talent. With over 5,000 athletes descending upon the City, it's bound to be a thrilling week for both participants and spectators alike. Kicking off the lineup is the 2023 Mid Atlantic Players Softball Clinic, which will take place at the Princess Anne Athletic Complex. Following the clinic, the 2023 Summer Scorcher Softball Tournament will take center stage at the Princess Anne Athletic Complex. Last, but certainly not least, is the highly-anticipated 2023 Grassroots Basketball Summer Championship, set to take place at the Virginia Beach Sports Center. As the VBCC wraps up StarQuest and welcomes a wedding tomorrow, Beyond Van Gogh – The Immersive Experience continues to offer people a new way to appreciate an old master. Already, over 15,000 people have enjoyed the exhibit! Looking to next week, the VBCC is hosting the FM99 Rock n Roll Up Your Sleeve Blood Drive on Thursday, July 20th.

Partners, Your Help Is Needed: As business increases, so does waste. Recently, there have been routine instances of large amounts of unsightly and odorous debris left behind following trash collection. In one instance, approximately 50 feet of the trolley lane was covered with trash following collection. The situation was so extreme that the Beach Ambassadors power washed that section of the trolley lane to eliminate the smell after picking up the debris. Since we are seeing an uptick in these situations, we wanted to connect with everyone regarding the steps we are taking and how you can help. 

What the City Beach Ambassadors Do: The Beach Ambassadors provide litter and debris pickup along with power washing as a supplemental service to an annual services contract. The City has a contract with a power-washing company that routinely cleans the sidewalks (bi-weekly) of Atlantic Ave. The Beach Ambassador program has limited capability to clean as environmental regulations do not allow for more than use of hot water unless protective and remediation measures are in place. The annual services contractor does have capability to clean with more than simple hot water. However, the cost dramatically increases with this service.

What the Waste Company has been asked to do: This situation has been discussed with the waste company. They claim that, in most cases, the capacity for waste collection (number/size of waste receptacles) is inadequate. The cans are routinely overloaded to the point of being piled up, causing open lids. When these overloaded containers are emptied, trash can fall to the wayside. The “trash juice” that leaks during dumping, and continuously from the back of the truck, is made worse with rain that has fallen into open trash containers. On-site dumpsters also present this problem when overloaded and open. Additionally, some of the dumpsters have had hydraulic leaks.  

RMO Administrator Lisa Bleakley has asked the following from vendor GFL Environmental and will follow through on the same requests from Bay Disposal and any other waste collection service in the Resort area:

  • Trucks and dumpsters shall be kept in good repair
  • The collection crew must attempt to clean spilled solid debris
  • Speak with clients to determine together the level of service adequate to keep up with the waste and avoid unsightly situations.

How Resort Area Businesses Can Help:

  • Assess and purchase the collection service level necessary to effectively keep up with waste
  • Ensure compliance with City Code -   

o   Have enough containers to accommodate trash with a closed lid

o   Abide by placement and hours of cans for waste pickup

  • Have staff assist (to the ability possible) in timely solid cleanup proximate to the business property
  • Contact the Resort Management Office if action or discussion is needed

The RMO will continue working to remediate these situations. Our goal is to work together with the business community to reduce these occurrences so cleaning efforts can be focused in other areas.  Thank you for your assistance in getting the word out. Together we can make a beautiful, lasting impression for the millions of guests and residents who enjoy the Oceanfront!

Virginia Beach Events Presents Beach Blanket Movie Fest 2023 - Bring the entire family to the Virginia Beach Oceanfront July 18-22 as we celebrate the “Galactic Greats" of film.  Find your spot in the sand on the beach at 29th St. and enjoy classic movies under the stars for five nights! All films begin at 8:30 pm and are free and open to the public. More details, including movie titles, may be found here

Town Center Is Buzzing with Activity- With two world-class performing arts centers, live bands, and musical performances, there’s always something exciting happening in the Town Center of Virginia Beach! Get ready to add to your calendar after exploring their upcoming events here.

Beyond Van Gogh: The Immersive Experience Now Open - Tickets are going fast for this summer sizzler of an experience! If you haven’t purchased your tickets just yet, you won’t want to wait much longer.  A sell-out in many cities, our Convention Center (Hall D) is the venue for this immersive experience of more than 300 of the greatest works of post-Impressionist artist Vincent Van Gogh. Beyond Van Gogh: The Immersive Experience has sold over 5 million tickets globally, making it one of the most popular current traveling exhibitions. Don't miss this one! Click here for tickets and more information. 


To view the Resort area nightly entertainment schedule, click here. For Town Center events and activities, please click here.

My team and I are committed to you and our industry and are here to help. Please let me know how we can assist. 

Nancy Helman 
CVB Director










Hotel Occupancy for the week of June 25 - July 1 :  According to Smith Travel Research, Virginia Beach’s hotel occupancy rate rate for the week of June 25 – July 1 was up 1.8% year-over-year at 76.2% occupancy but down -2.5% for the running 28-day trend. ADR was up 1.1% at $230.62 for the week and up 1.0% for the running 28-day trend. RevPAR was up 2.9% at $175.84 but down -1.6% for the running 28-day trend. In comparison to the month of June 2019, we have a decrease in occupancy of -7.07% but counter this with an increase in ADR and RevPAR of 33.70% and 24.70% respectively.

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Virginia Beach Convention & Visitors Bureau

600 22nd Street, 2nd Floor, Virginia Beach, VA 23451

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