By Indira Eskieva, WRAL eastern NC reporter
Raleigh, N.C. — Most everyone looks forward to putting 2020 in the rear-view mirror.
This year, New Year’s Eve comes with disappointment that celebrations will not be what they once were. And the lack of celebrations downtown is yet another big blow for already struggling bars and restaurants.
December 31 is traditionally a bustling day in downtown, as event coordinators and businesses plan for the arrival of big crowds. Organizers would be setting up stages, blocking off streets and making security plans.
This year, the streets of downtown Raleigh are quiet and empty – a much different scene from prior years.
In the past, more than 40,000 people came out to watch the iconic Acorn Drop — and the fireworks that followed.
The cancellation of this event, combined with the 10 p.m. curfew, is yet another hit for the restaurants and bars that are typically packed on this night.
One restaurant owner told WRAL News he expects to make just a quarter of what sales were in prior years.
Locals can, however, help restaurants tonight. Business-owners suggest buying take-out from a locally-owned establishment to ring in the New Year with a good meal in the safety and comfort of your own home.