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Memphis sees increase in visitors during spring break

Updated: Mar. 15, 2021 at 5:56 PM CDT
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - It’s spring break and the Mid-South is getting some visitors.

“Came out here to get some good food and see the sights,” said one tourist.

“We just came to check it out to see what they really talking about,” said another tourist.

Tennessee Governor Bill Lee along with State Senator Brian Kelsey are letting everyone know the state and Memphis are open for business and are encouraging spring breakers to visit the Volunteer State.

Related | Memphis airport expects spring break travel to make Friday biggest travel day in a year

Over the weekend the Memphis airport saw an increase in travelers.

”TSA screened over 31,000 employees and passengers last week so that made it the busiest week we’ve had since the pandemic began,” said Public Information Officer for the Memphis airport Glen Thomas.

Kevin Kern with Memphis tourism also says business increased over the weekend.

”We do know from merchants, attractions, hotels, restaurants that we have seen an increase of the number of people visiting Memphis over the weekend and going into next weekend as well,” said Kern.

Baptist infectious disease expert Dr. Steve Threlkeld says given the new variants there is a concern of a surge post-spring break.

“It remains a race between vaccination and our behavior and spring break is just unfortunately one of those glitches in our behavior that may play against us,” said Threlkeld.

As of Monday, only 65,864 people have been fully vaccinated in Shelby County.

If the number of people vaccinated was higher, Threlkeld says, the concern would be less.

“The more people we can absolutely protect, the more forgiving any other factor will be in the way of detrimental issues,” said Threlkeld.

The good thing is businesses and tourists say they feel safe as everyone is enforcing and following the COVID-19 guidelines.

“Everyone’s you know doing the right thing and keeping their masks on and keeping the distance so we’re all enjoying ourselves,” said Bernie Edwards from Houston.

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