Coastal Mass. businesses ready for unofficial start of summer as staffing return closer to normal

HULL – Memorial Day weekend is the unofficial start of summer for many. At some Massachusetts coastal businesses, that means it will be a busy weekend while staffing levels are finally returning closer to normal.  

On Friday, the lobsters were being put onto rolls at Jake’s Seafoods in Hull, just one of the many signs of the quickly approaching busy season for coastal communities.

“I think the season is going to be good. It takes a little bit to get going every season especially down here on the seacoast and on the Cape,” said Jim O’Brien, who owns the Hull restaurant.

The business has been around for 36 years, and they know a thing or two about operating through the rush of a holiday weekend.

“Our average customer eats with us two nights a week, so we get to know our customers very, very well. A lot of people are arriving from Florida over the last couple of weeks,” O’Brien said.

Jake’s will be operating at about 90% staffing this weekend. O’Brien said he started recruiting seasonal workers in February to get ahead of the rush.

“We are hopeful we can fill our ranks out with college students,” O’Brien said.

Down the street you’ll find Brian Houlihan at The Parrot.

Houlihan purchased the business just before the pandemic began and is looking forward to their most “normal” summer yet.

“We are getting all our ducks in a row and making sure we have a great weekend ahead,” Houlihan said. “Six months of planning for six months of business.”

Houlihan said their staff is about 70% full, but he feels confident going into the weekend.

“We just want everyone to be patient. Most of our customers are amazing, but understand we are getting where we need to be,” said Houlihan.

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