To the editor,

The city of Myrtle Beach is killing tourism.

I have been making Myrtle Beach my vacation destination for approximately 45 years, however the so called “lifeguards” have successfully chased me and my family away with their umbrella and chair policy.

In July 2020, we rented a waterfront condo for one week and paid in excess of $3,000. After an early start on our first beach day and prior to lifeguards on the beach, we set up our beach umbrellas, chairs, etc. directly in front of the condo.

Within a half hour, the lifeguards started setting up the city’s umbrellas and chairs. When completely set up, the lifeguards proceeded to tell us and everyone else that had previously set up their beach belongings, “You must move behind the city’s umbrellas” which now covered ever linear square foot of the beach for several hundred yards in both directions.

In addition to the aggravation of having to set up behind the city’s umbrellas and chairs (no oceanfront allowed on the beach) the vast majority of the city’s chairs remained unrented all day/week. The reason I referred to the lifeguards as “so called” is because in one week I never saw a lifeguard look at the ocean or sit in the lifeguard chair; they stayed busy chasing families from in front of the city’s umbrellas.

Apparently the city doesn’t want repeat vacationers and they have been successful in preventing me and my family from returning.

Jerry A. Thompson

Ebony, Virginia

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