A little music accompanies a lunch that many people missed for 11 days. The Peaks of Otter Lodge is open.

Food is being served and employees are happy to be back on the job after the shutdown.

“It was a kick in the gut. Literally, we had our official grand opening on Friday and the government shut us down on Tuesday,” said General Manager Robert Peters.

The lodge closed with uncertainty leading into its future. Peters was able to strike a deal with the National Park Service to reopen the tourist attraction. It's a decision that's excited visitors.

“Thrilled, I'm so happy. I'm with a photography meet up group, called Exposure Roanoke,” said visitor Jan Millard.

It gave the group an opportunity not only to shoot footage of beautiful scenery to but to take in all the lodge has to offer.

"I'm really, really happy. We just finished eating lunch in there. It's wonderful; the place is great, the rain stopped, so it was perfect,’ said Millard.

“The whole experience is great, but this is such a beautiful park and I've never been here before,” said
Jack Sheffler.

The lodge had to refund and cancel reservations, but they say those patrons are happy to know the lodge is back in business.