Dining on Beverley Street in Downtown Staunton returns this weekend
By Rebecca J. Barnabi
For Augusta Free Press
STAUNTON — No April Fool’s joke here. The first weekend in April means the reopening of Dine Out Downtown.
“We’re excited. It starts back up today, this afternoon,” said Greg Beam, executive director of the Staunton Downtown Development Association.
Every weekend through October 30, Beverley Street will be closed to vehicle traffic from 4 p.m. on Fridays until 7:30 a.m. on Mondays. Cross streets will remain open to vehicle traffic.
“As the world is getting a little healthier, we’ll have more folks likely venture in downtown,” Beam said.
Dine Out Downtown gained popularity in 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic as a way for visitors to continue to enjoy downtown and social distance but also to help keep downtown businesses going.
A few businesses “we’ve had to say goodbye to” in downtown Staunton, according to Beam. But new businesses have opened, including Remedy Burger and Vic’s Eats on Beverley Street. Beam said that Vic’s opened last year just after Dine Out Downtown closed for the season.
Beam said that SDDA hopes more retailers and musicians will also participate in this year’s Dine Out Downtown.
“Even though Beverley is closed [on weekends to vehicle traffic], we invite folks to shop and dine downtown,” Beam said.
Visitors are also encouraged to walk and shop on side streets, enjoy retail on Central Avenue and enjoy eating and shopping at The Wharf to get the full picture of what downtown Staunton has to offer.
“This is an event that’s really led by the city of Staunton and tourism,” Beam said. Partnerships between SDDA, downtown businesses, nonprofits and City Hall make Dine Out Downtown possible every year. A map of participating businesses is available at www.stauntondowntown.org.
Beam said that he and staff, on the second floor of their office on Beverley Street, are able to see visitors every Friday make their way downtown.
“It really helps to see people out and about and enjoying downtown,” he said.
This year, new street banners and flower arrangements will welcome visitors downtown.
Beam said SDDA and the city continue to accept suggestions and input about how to improve Dine Out Downtown.
“So it’s the best possible experience it can be [for businesses and visitors],” he said.