Pirate Days at Smith Mountain Lake helps restaurants bring in the treasure

Published: Jul. 17, 2022 at 7:07 PM EDT
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SMITH MOUNTAIN LAKE, Va. (WDBJ) - Pirate Days at Smith Mountain Lake is a way to draw people to the lake between the Fourth of July and Labor Day.

X truly marks the spot at Smith Mountain Lake. Pirate Days was a hit over the weekend, especially for the restaurants.

The weather was also perfect this year, drawing in a large crowd.

“It’s been amazing. It’s been hard to see the ground with all the feet walking around it honestly,” said Andy Park, Pirate Days participant.

Restaurants on the lake are especially benefiting from the turnout.

“We’ve been seeing new customers from different states, even from around this area and Roanoke. We’ve been seeing a lot of customers,” said Christhian Oliva, manager for Los Amigos.

Managers at Jake’s Place and Los Amigos say Pirate Days is busier than Memorial Day and Fourth of July weekend.

“I think it makes it more popular because of the costumes and we have live music every weekend and that’s when we have more people coming in,” said Oliva.

Pirate Days has become an additional holiday for some restaurants.

“We’re always busy, but those specific weekends like Memorial Day, Labor Day and Pirates Weekend are always an extra boost in customers,” said James Wade, general manager for Portside Bar and Grill.

They say the savvy fashion is what draws the customers in.

“It has become a huge thing with everybody on the lake,” said Wade. “It’s almost like a second Halloween because you get everybody dressing up and then they even go as far as to deck their boats out as pirate ships with water guns.”

The pirates are already looking forward to setting sail next summer.

“It’s going to keep getting better and better every year,” said Wade. “We’re trying to get more creative with it especially without water balloons, but we’ll find some way to have fun.”

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