Opening of Cherry Street Pier signals post pandemic chapter

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- As society approaches the one-year anniversary of the pandemic lockdowns, there's a beginning sense that not only spring is just around the corner, but people are longing for a return to normal.

You know it's a good thing when the first Friday of the season arrives, and the Cherry Street Pier is open again with the sound of music and the smell of food in the air.

"It makes me start hoping for summer. So we can get outside more. This is one of my favorite places," said Ray Hubbard of Center City.

"And it's so great to have some live music," said Sally Hubbard.

Cherry Street Pier features local artisans with their creations of all sorts, including neon lights and the much-loved market series featuring handcrafted goods from local makers.

"I mean Cherry Street Pier gives us an opportunity to share our work, I share my art and share my music," said Poetica Bey of West Philadelphia.

Tracy Chen of Center City said, "I'm really excited to see all of these small businesses being able to open up a stall here. Sometimes it's hard."

For some, it provides an opportunity to safely come out of a sort of lockdown hibernation just in time for spring.

"It's really cool that it's reopened. We're really excited to be able to get out and out of the house and walk around," said Katherine Wang of Center City.

It was refreshing to see several businesses like Sulimay Salon & Barber Stand in Fairmont thriving with business again, even though they are still only allowed to open at 50% occupant capacity.

"It's been a wild ride, but I feel very blessed, honestly just that we're able to open and function and do it safely," said owner Tara Acosta.
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