Get to Know the ViBe

By Kelsey Thomas

The ViBe certainly wouldn’t be considered the Creative District without its dedication to presenting local art. The Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) exhibits some of the most significant and impactful art of our time, offering a diversity seldom found in the arts community. These modern pieces offer insight into the age we live in. Providing an educational and supportive environment for artists, the Virginia Beach Art Center is a place for artists of all ages to engage and create. Be sure to visit The Artists Gallery located inside the Art Center. This artists’ cooperative provides an intimate setting to view original fine art and get to know more about the artists behind the work, as the space is used for creating, exhibiting and showcasing.

However, the creativity extends beyond the visual into the palatable. Creative restaurateurs have anchored themselves within the district, contributing exciting drinking and dining experiences. ViBe has become a mecca for foodies.

OnieTonie, Photo Courtesy of Lori Golding Photography

Craving a high-quality, handcrafted burger? Barrel 17 serves mouthwatering wagyu beef burgers piled high with an array of toppings for you to choose from.

Bad Ass Coffee and other coffee roasters have made the ViBe a go-to destination for some of the best coffee in Virginia Beach. The area also contains mainstays you’ll recognize, like Zero’s Subs. Zero’s began making oven-baked subs in 1967 and has become an institution in Virginia Beach.

You can even get to sipping, as the ViBe District is buzzing with locals and visitors dying to try craft beers, incredible spirits and delicious cocktails. Vibrant Shore Brewing brews adventurous, flavor-packed American ales and refined, balanced European lagers and ales, made with locally sourced ingredients.

Yet the variety of businesses is not limited to arts and dining. You can find everything from antiques to fine jewelry at Superior Pawn. There are also charming boutiques and shops where you can purchase handcrafted products. Shop unique items with bohemian flair at Gypsy Soul Boutique. This is the perfect place to browse if you’re looking for something to wear for a day on the beach or a night out. Find all of your home improvement needs, as well as bikes for peddling the boardwalk, flowers, plants and more, at Best Value Hardware.

The ViBe Creative District is bringing diversity and vitality to the Oceanfront. Take a walk off the beaten path and you’ll find the creative renaissance of the ViBe.

Want to Feel the ViBe? Read more.

Feelin’ the ViBe of Virginia Beach

ViBe Creative District

By Kelsey Thomas

You can’t miss the ViBe Creative District that is nestled near the Virginia Beach Oceanfront and surrounded by unique neighborhoods that are full of personality and charm. Perhaps the area stands out to you for its bright, colorful and artistic appearance or maybe for its surrounding street names, like Baltic and Mediterranean to name just a few, that make you feel like you’re driving along a Monopoly gameboard. Whatever it is that you notice first, it’s no secret that the area will certainly grab your attention. 


Nearly 1,000 bird houses, created by local students, adorn these arches on the corner of 19th Street and Parks Avenue

The ViBe District embodies an electric spirit intertwined with the laid-back attitude of the Virginia Beach resort area, showcasing vivid and locally crafted art while presenting itself as a small business gateway made up of beachy vibes. Boasting tons of restaurants and eclectic shops lining the streets, you can’t ignore the over two dozen wall murals that were designed by local artists and decorate the many buildings of small businesses. Consider taking part in the one-mile ViBe Mural Walking Tour to learn about the area and admire the various murals. It’s also the ultimate place for Instagram-worthy photos, with pops of color that make for the perfect backsplash in any picture. The area also hosts many events throughout the year, like the weekly Old Beach Farmers Market, various art shows, pop-up shops and some of the city’s best happy hours. 

Get to know the ViBe… Read More!

ViBe Walking Tour

Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind

The Green Energy Capital of the East Coast

By Kelsey Thomas

Something is definitely in the water in Virginia Beach. In fact, that something is so powerful that it is expected to provide energy for up to 660,000 homes, create at least 1,100 jobs and bring the region closer to achieving our net-zero emission goals. Virginia Beach is now home to the Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind Farm, owned by Dominion Energy, that has giant wind turbines stationed 27 miles off the coast.

The Program
Currently two turbines stand in the Atlantic, towering at 600 feet above the water line and an additional 201 feet underwater and below the ocean floor, making them impressively taller than the Washington Monument. The pilot program is expected to host 180 turbines by 2026 that stand at 800 feet above the water line and will produce 14 MW of electricity each, according to Dominion Energy’s eastern region policy director, Bonita Harris.

The Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind Project is committed to delivering clean and renewable energy and avoiding carbon dioxide emissions. While this is only the second offshore wind project in the nation, it is the largest and the first wind farm in federal waters and the only one to be owned and operated by a United States utility company (Dominion Energy). 

The Perks
It’s no surprise that the project plays a major role in steering us in the right direction environmentally. With all 180 expected turbines, 8.8 million MW of wind power per year will be generated to the grid, all with zero carbon emissions. That means greener and cleaner air. 

The location of the turbines in the ocean also brings the benefit of more marine life, attracting fish and the development of marine life on the structures, further boosting the recreational fishing communities that are so vital to Virginia Beach. 

The project even brings an incredible number of new jobs to the area, as about 150 full-time Dominion Energy employees will be needed to operate the wind turbines. It is also expected that there will be an annual average of 900 additional jobs for the construction and 1,100 new jobs for the operation, according to the Magnum Economics Study commissioned by the Hampton Roads Alliance. 

Locals and tourists alike can marvel over the sight of the giant towers when they venture out on the open waters by boat or on a tour to see the incredible phenomenon. With the Coastal Virginia Offshore Wind Farm living in the Atlantic, it’s safe to say that Virginia Beach is destined to become the green energy capital of the East Coast.

Learn more at DominionEnergy.com.

Food + Drink = FUN!

Coastal Cuisine and Local Libations Give Visitors a Taste of Virginia Beach

By Arielle Patterson

A thriving culinary scene flour-ishes throughout Virginia Beach. Local chefs are incorporating many aspects of Virginia Beach’s coastal culture into their cuisine to create a memorable dining experience. Complemented by refreshing cocktails from local bars and distilleries, as well as the area’s burgeoning craft beer scene, eating and drinking is sure to be a delicious, fun-filled experience.

Savor Local Seafood
Situated on the coastline, Virginia Beach chefs are no strangers to serving the finest seafood. From oysters on the half shell and creamy She Crab soup to more innovative dishes, there are so many ways to indulge in fresh offerings straight from the sea. 

Virginia Beach waterways are full of fish and shellfish that make for a delicious meal. Try our famous Lynnhaven oysters, plucked straight from the water around you. There’s a raw bar pretty much anywhere you go or try bivalve baked as Oysters Rockefeller for a creamy, cheesy twist.

Crab is served so many ways in Virginia Beach. Enjoy a delicious crab dip appetizer or a hot, creamy bowl of She Crab Soup. Lump crab is served in the form of crab cakes or stuffed in the day’s fresh catch. Soft shell crab season typically runs from April to September and the popular delight can be served in a variety of ways, including as a sandwich, main entrée or salad addition. Of course, nothing says summer like steamed crabs, spread out on the table, covered in Old Bay.

Farm to Table
Much like our seafood, Virginia Beach has proudly embraced the farm-to-table movement. Farm-to-table restaurants utilize the freshest, seasonal local ingredients in their dishes. The only thing better than indulging in a delicious meal is knowing that you’re supporting local farmers, growers and watermen. 

Pungo, Virginia Beach’s farming community, is the source of much of the produce that local restaurants use. While you’re here, make some time to visit one of the local farm stands or ‘you-pick’ farms in Pungo or another part of the city. These farm stands, along with weekly farmers markets, are a great opportunity to experience the local flavor and enjoy fresh ingredients.

Spring and summer are primetime for strawberry picking and Virginia Beach is known for growing large, juicy strawberries. Summertime is also perfect for picking vibrant blueberries, ripe peaches and more. With over a dozen pick-your-own farms in the area, kids and adults will love spending some time loading up their basket with these naturally sweet treats.

Coastal Cocktails
Whether you are looking for a classic adult beverage to pair with your meal or for the perfect beach sip, Virginia Beach has a number of refreshing cocktails to enjoy. Savor a local favorite, the famous Orange Crush, at various popular bars by the boardwalk. Combining fresh-squeezed orange juice, triple sec and Sprite, the Orange Crush is a staple to any summer in Virginia Beach. Another favorite amongst locals and visitors alike is the Rum Runner, which most restaurants have their own special takes on, some serving it on ice and some frozen. 

Craft Beer
Virginia Beach’s craft beer scene is always growing and evolving. The city has more than 13 breweries producing small batches of juicy IPAs, bursting with flavor to complement the summer season, as well as sours that will make you pucker, rich stouts, seasonal brews and so much more.

Head to one of these breweries to enjoy a drink on a shaded outdoor patio or visit a local bottle shop to purchase a little bit of everything, as well as a six-pack to take home once you leave Virginia Beach. Plan a tasting adventure and check off each of the city’s breweries as you travel along the Virginia Beach Beer Trail. The VA Beach Beer Trail, available online, is your guide to all of the breweries, from the ViBe District and resort area to Chic’s Beach and even more inland.

Wasserhund-beer flight
Wasserhund Brewery

A Meal with a View
Enhance your dining experience when you enjoy a meal by the water. Virginia Beach boasts 29 miles of scenic waterways, from the ocean to the inland bays. These waterfront restaurants range in style and budget, from laid-back beach bars and casual family-friendly eateries to upscale restaurants perfect for a romantic night out.

Come straight from the beach to one of the bars, grills or restaurants near the Virginia Beach Boardwalk, Chic’s Beach and Rudee Inlet. Discover some of the more secluded waterfront restaurants as well that are frequented by locals. These hidden gems are tucked away overlooking the bays and rivers. Wherever you choose to eat, the scenic, shimmering water vista will complement your Virginia Beach meal.

rudees on the inlet cabana swings
Rudee’s on the Inlet Restaurant and Cabana Bar

Bayou Boogaloo Is Back!

MUSIC • FOOD • ART • COMMUNITY

Photo Courtesy of the Mid City Bayou Boogaloo.

The Mid-City Bayou Boogaloo Festival is an annual celebration of Louisiana’s music, art, food, and culture held on the banks of Bayou St. John.

WHEN:
May 20-23, 2022
Friday – 12-4 p.m. (FREE) / 5-10 p.m. (Ticketed)
Saturday – 12-10 p.m. (Ticketed)
Sunday – 12-6 p.m. (Ticketed)

WHERE:
Town Point Park in Downtown Norfolk, VA

WHAT TO EXPECT:

  • Live music
  • Authentic food & chefs of New Orleans
  • Art vendors of New Orleans
  • Special Bayou activities

BUY TICKETS

CONTACT INFORMATION:
Town Point Park, 120 West Main Street, Norfolk, Virginia. 757-441-2345

Entertainment in Virginia Beach

Day or night, rain or shine, Virginia Beach is overflowing with entertainment for all ages.

By Arielle Patterson

 A trip to Virginia Beach is sure to be an unforgettable getaway, as it will be filled with memorable activities and adventures. Adding to those memories are the entertainment options available throughout the city. Day or night, rain or shine, Virginia Beach is overflowing with entertainment for all ages.

Family Entertainment 
After a long day at the beach, you may just want to go back to your hotel room and relax. Your kids, however, may have a different idea. Take those stir-crazy little ones out and experience some different fun in this beach city.

grommet park
Grommet Island Park

Grommet Island Park is a 15,000-square-foot beach park designed for “everyBODY.” Equipped with wheelchair accessible entrances, a sensory board and more, this park is perfect for all children. Here, kids can build a sandcastle, go for a ride on the dolphin sculpture or climb on the jungle gym.

Let your kids climb, jump and slide at one of the beachfront playgrounds located at 10th Street and 31st Street. 

Or grab a putter and hit the green for some mini golf. A variety of themes and even indoor locations make this a perfect outing, rain or shine. Bring out your kid at heart at one of our area arcades. Enjoy some family-friendly competition as you strive to collect the most tickets to take home the big prize. Savor the memories of your trip by getting themed photos done at one of the various studios or gear up for an adventure at the resort area’s indoor skydiving facility.

Live Music and Entertainment
As you stroll along the Virginia Beach Boardwalk, let soothing sounds or upbeat rhythms surround you. Local musicians and bands play at numerous venues throughout Virginia Beach, including local restaurants so you can enjoy some tunes with your meal or drinks.

street performer at the oceanfront

The beaches and beach stages along the Oceanfront resort area, including the newly expanded beach stages, play host to performers throughout the summer season, along with annual festivals that draw crowds from all over. Inland, local theaters and concert venues showcase traveling musicals and stage plays, dance performances, national headliners and so much more.

Beyond the Beach
Just beyond the beach, in nearby Norfolk, Hampton, Williamsburg and more, additional entertainment abounds. Experience waterfront nightlife in Norfolk, where you may be able to catch a concert, play some shuffleboard or go bar hopping. 

Colonial Williamsburg’s living-history museum is filled with entertainment through the historical interpreters and features many enticing exhibits that the kids will find fascinating. Read more about Coastal Virginia’s attractions on page 35.

Experience Entertainment, Live!, on Atlantic Avenue
The fun doesn’t stop once the sun goes down. The streets and sidewalks along Atlantic Avenue become a stage when Live! On Atlantic takes over from Memorial Day weekend to Labor Day weekend. Live! On Atlantic brings dynamic, family-friendly entertainment to Atlantic Avenue at the Oceanfront resort area.

Experience live entertainment from street musicians, jugglers, magicians and comedians as you stroll down Atlantic Avenue. You’ll be amazed by the high-flying acrobats or want to dance to incredible sounds from live performers on an eight-block corridor of Atlantic Avenue. 

Live! On Atlantic, Photo Courtesy of BeachEventsVB.com

Historical shows, a magic show and music in the parks provide family-friendly entertainment for all ages. Watch daring feats of strength and interactive experiences that are sure to amaze the young and young at heart. Keep your eyes peeled for caricature and balloon artists, face painters, living statues and so much more as you discover the world of Live! On Atlantic.

Mark your calendar for some of the Oceanfront’s most exciting festivals. Enjoy the sounds of summer at one of Live! On Atlantic’s music festivals. Grab a beach chair and listen to classic hits of the ’70s, sea shanties sung by pirates, Latin music, soulful funk and everything in between.

Visit BeachStreetUSA.com to learn about all the exciting activities, events and performances right at the Virginia Beach Oceanfront. 

SEA Beyond the Surface at the Virginia Aquarium

Come SEA beyond the surface at the Virginia Aquarium & Marine Science Center and encounter the region’s most beloved residents while learning to preserve and protect wildlife and the marine environment. Catch a selfie with a friendly sea turtle or be awed by magnificent sharks swimming directly over your head. Meet eye-to-eye with Komodo dragons or peek below the water to find endangered Tomistoma. Try one of our many hands-on exhibits or take a short stroll on our nature trail along Owls Creek and surround yourself with Virginia wildlife.

Book a behind-the-scenes tour for the most exclusive experience at the Virginia Aquarium. Guided by experienced educators, walk behind the exhibits to get a closer look at the animals and state-of-the-art technology and learn about the team’s animal behavioral training techniques and the vital role it plays in animal care. Peer above the exhibit to observe aquarists conducting behavioral training with our sea turtles, watch Komodo dragon feedings behind the scenes, or learn about the water quality process and filtration systems behind the Chesapeake Bay aquarium, a 50,000-gallon aquarium that cycles 600 gallons of water per minute.

If you are seeking more adventure, reserve your spot on an Aquarium Boat Tour. Come aboard for an unforgettable excursion in search of Virginia’s most common and charismatic marine mammal, the bottlenose dolphin. As you search for dolphins feeding and playing along the surface, learn from our knowledgeable educators about other coastal animals like majestic seabirds, curious sea turtles, and unique fish species.

Reserve your timed entry today. Reservations can be made online at www.VirginiaAquarium.com.

Main Events in Virginia Beach

By Kelsey Thomas

There is quite literally always something happening in Virginia Beach. From concerts and comedy shows to festivals and more. So no matter what kind of things you are into, there is sure to be an event coming up for you! Mark your calendars for these upcoming 2022 and early 2023 events. See our entire event calendar at VirginiaBeach.Guide/Special-Events

May 27-26, 2022 
Memorial Day Weekend Salute to Summer
Celebrate the start of summer with a weekend full of concerts at the Oceanfront. There will be free concerts at the 17th Street and 24th Street Parks. Learn more at VirginiaBeach.Guide/Events/Memorial-Day-Weekend-Salute-to-Summer.

June 11, 2022: 
CoVa Battle of the Burgers (Photo above)
Indulge at one of Virginia Beach’s most mouthwatering events of the year! CoVa Battle of the Burgers will be held at the Military Aviation Museum and will be the ultimate competition between restaurants to see who makes the best burger in Coastal Virginia. Live music by Buckshot. Learn more at CoVaBurgerBattle.com.

June 18, 2022
Chalk the Walk
Prepare for the Virginia Beach Boardwalk to get chalked! This colorful event allows artists to gather and turn the boardwalk into an impromptu of color. Learn more at VirginiaBeach.Guide/Special-Events/Chalk-the-Walk.

Photo Courtesy of BeachEventsVB.com

August 21-28, 2022
60th Annual Coastal Edge East Coast Surfing Championships
Experience the ECSC excitement at the Virginia Beach Oceanfront. Whether you’re there to surf or to watch, there is so much to do. There will also be tons of vendors to try to win cool prizes from. Learn more at SurfECSC.com.

Sept. 3, 2022
Bubble Run
Get to running at the Virginia Beach Sports Complex. This unforgettable 5K will have you covered in bubbles. Learn more at BubbleRun.com/products/Virginia-Beach-VA-22.

Sept. 11, 2022
Outlaw Music Festival
Country music fanatics, this one’s for you! Enjoy Willie Nelson & Family, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats, Billy Strings, Larkin Poe and Brittney Spencer at this annual country music festival. Learn more at Audacy.com/2wd/events/Outlaw-Music-Festival-2022.

Sept. 30-Oct. 2, 2022
Neptune Festival Boardwalk Weekend
The Neptune Festival is a Virginia Beach favorite. An entire weekend of fun awaits, with concerts at festival stages, a sand sculpting championship, grand parade and so much more.  Learn more at NeptuneFestival.com/events/Boardwalk-Weekend.

Oct. 21-23, 2022
Virginia MOCA Boardwalk Art Show
Ranked as a top 15 Fine Art Show of the Decade by Sunshine, this three-day festival features nearly 200 artists from around the country.  Learn more at VirginiaMOCA.org/Boardwalk-Art-Show.

Photo by Matt Haddaway

Nov. 25-27, 2022
Virginia Beach Christmas Market
Shop for unique gifts and start spreading the Christmas cheer at this annual market held at the Virginia Beach Convention Center. Learn more at EMGShows.com/AVBCM.

Feb. 11-12, 2023
Coastal Virginia Magazine WineFest 
Quench your thirst by partaking in your very own Virginia wine trail all under one roof! This event features an endless list of Virginia wineries and cideries with a distillery den and a sponsored beer garden. Learn more at CoVaWineFest.com.

January Virginia Beach events

Beautifying the Resort Area, Block by Block

An inside look at the Virginia Beach Ambassadors Program

By Kelsey Thomas

Locals and tourists alike take pride in the cleanliness and safety within the city of Virginia Beach, specifically at the Oceanfront. The Virginia Beach Ambassador’s Program operates year-round in Virginia Beach and provides cleaning, safety and hospitality services that make the environment a beautiful destination beyond just tourist season. 

Operating in over 100 cities throughout the United States, the program first planted roots in Virginia Beach in March 2021. Some of their services that go into maintaining the positive atmosphere that the Virginia Beach Oceanfront is known for include litter collection and cleaning, guest hospitality and resource efforts, patrol shifts and homeless outreach.

You’ve probably seen the people in bright yellow stationed in various spots in the resort area of the Oceanfront. These are the Virginia Beach Ambassadors who rotate shifts seven days a week and whose typical work day starts as early as 5 a.m. While their morning begins with an operations brief from the Operations Manager or Team Lead, they spend the majority of their day out on the streets. 

1647280182___VB22BLOCKBYBLOCKAMBASSADORSDSC_39763_2
Virginia Beach Ambassadors Program

Covering from 1st to 40th Street on Atlantic Avenue, including side streets, as well as the 17th, 24th and 31st Street parks and monuments, ambassadors navigate the resort area collecting litter, removing graffiti and stickers, cleaning public trash receptacles and conducting pressure washing operations.

Amid their cleaning efforts, the ambassadors also remain alert and ready to assist the public, whether it be by answering questions about the area or providing resources or recommendations about where to eat, where to find public restrooms, upcoming events and more. Their information kiosks are provided during high volume events and can be found in high public transit areas. They primarily serve as what Operations Manager Carlos Torrespablos describes as “an information locker on wheels,” storing all of the materials necessary that will enhance a visitor’s stay, and are accompanied by ambassadors who are ready to answer any questions or concerns a guest may have.  

In addition to being a public resource, the Virginia Beach Ambassadors provide a tremendous amount of extra security to the resort area. As they patrol Atlantic Avenue on foot, they monitor the area for signs of any suspicious activity. 

What inspires the Virginia Beach Ambassadors to work so tirelessly to contribute to the community day-in and day-out? Torrespablos mentions that there’s no greater satisfaction than “maintaining a smile on the faces of our guests. We are problem solvers and an encouraging force that is always welcoming in the delivery of our services to all.” Whether it be by providing the public resources that enhance a visitor’s trip or maintaining a clean and safe environment, these ambassadors make the Virginia Beach resort area an oasis for all one block at a time.  

Learn more at blockbyblock.com.

See a spot in the resort area that needs attention or would like to review the performance of an ambassador? Contact Operations Manager Carlos Torresplabos at ctorrespablos@blockbyblock.com.

What’s New in 2022?

By Kelsey Thomas

Virginia Beach is lucky to be a city that is always growing and evolving. Whether it be with new developments or new attractions, the area thrives off refinement and restoration.

Virginia Beach Sports Center
The recently completed multi-sport complex is the East Coast’s newest and largest indoor sports complex and is expected to drastically impact off-season tourism in a positive manner. With youth sports, adult sports, various events and tournaments, state-of-the-art facilities and more, the Virginia Beach Sports Center attracts both local and traveling sports teams. 

The complex is located less than a mile away from the resort area and features a 200-meter indoor hydraulically banked track, 12 hardwood basketball courts that can transform into 24 volleyball courts, versatile meeting and flex spaces, concessions and seating for up to 5,000 spectators. It also houses several competitions throughout the year, like the Neptune City Classic that will take place June 11-12 and the Feast Jam and Sneaker Slam happening Oct. 29-30.

The AVE Program Colored the Oceanfront
The pilot program called The AVE, standing for “Activate, Visit, Experience,” is dedicated to helping the city of Virginia Beach make improvements that benefit both locals and tourists alike. One of their major projects included sprucing up the resort area while also making the designed spaces more functionable for businesses and the public. 

Artists flooded Atlantic Avenue between 17th and 20th Streets to paint murals down the commercial strip. New walking and bike paths can be found beaming on the sides of the road and vivid parklets, or outdoor entertainment spaces, now serve as a brilliant multi-purpose area where visitors can rest or enjoy outdoor dining.

The Laskin Road Bridge Replacement & Widening Project

With construction that began in 2019 and expected to be completed by spring 2023, this project maintains efforts in enhancing roadway safety and increasing capacity of both drivers and pedestrians. 

Starting at Republic Road and extending through the First Colonial Road intersection, the Hilltop area is a heavily traveled spot, as it is just minutes from the Virginia Beach Oceanfront and boasts restaurants, small businesses and high-end stores. The improvements will open the road into an 8-lane highway, with 3 lanes accommodating bikes and two wide sidewalks on each side.