MORRISVILLE, North Carolina (WNCN) – A theater in the Triangle is once again welcoming guests for the first time in a year.
The B&B Theater at 3400 Village Market Place Park West opened Thursday night with full screenings starting Friday.
It’s been a year since this theater filled its seats.
“People reached out to us during this time of closure saying, ‘Okay, I miss going to the movies,’ said Paul Farnsworth, public relations director of B&B Theaters. “There really is no such thing as the movie on the big screen.”
B&B Theaters took over the Morrisville building within the past month. It reopens this week at 50% of its capacity. In addition to other safety measures, customers will be required to wear masks in public areas, except when seated in their seats.
They expect screenings to really pick up after Memorial Day as several new films will be released around this time.
Theaters were forcibly closed during the pandemic. It is one of the hardest hit industries, behind the accommodation and food industries.
“It’s been a challenge – not just here, but really everywhere as we try to reopen to get people back to work,” Farnsworth said.
He said many former employees had to find other jobs, but still received a lot of applications.
“It’s always a challenge. We’re pretty aggressive in our advertising that we’re hiring now, ”Farnsworth said.
Experts said the Triangle’s unemployment rate was 4%, meaning 5,000 more people are out of work than before the pandemic.
“Nationally, the job market has been a roller coaster for about a year now,” said John Quinterno, visiting professor at Duke University.
Quinterno said the virus and warrants will continue to dictate the direction of the economy.
“Just because a restaurant can seat 100% of its capacity doesn’t mean people will necessarily want to spend their time in a crowded indoor restaurant,” Quinterno said. “At the end of the day, I think even though the viral conditions seem to have improved over the year, we are still in the midst of the pandemic and the virus and what happens there will influence how people behave. and what we need to do. go forward. “