By Papa Osei

For many people, spring is a time to slow down and relax. But for others, it’s time to get to work.

Nelson Schmidt, operations chair for Hull’s Drive-In Movie Theatre, spent all day Saturday preparing for its March 30 opening.

“Spring means getting started,” Schmidt said, “making everything look fresh and bright again for when the customers come in, and [being] ready to show some movies.”

With the help of his family and Hull’s volunteer members, Schmidt got the drive-in on North Lee Highway ready for business. They hooked up and tested about 315 speakers, trimmed trees and applied new coats of paint to the concession stand and bathrooms.

Spring officially started on Tuesday. But in Natural Bridge, things had already kicked into gear. The Virginia Safari Park and the Natural Bridge Zoo opened for business on March 10and March 17, respectively.

Staff at the Natural Bridge Zoo said opening weekend drew a crowd to see the animals.

Mayumi Smitka, director of marketing at Rockbridge Area Tourism, said spring activities started early this year thanks to the mild winter. She said people started asking at the Visitor’s Center in February about outdoor attractions.

Weather is always an issue for outdoor attractions, especially Hull’s Drive-In.

“I hope we’re going to fill [Hull’s] up every weekend,” Schmidt said. “It depends on the weather, but we sure do have pretty weather right now.”

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