SCOTTSDALE, AZ (3TV/CBS5) -- This Fourth of July looks a lot different than last year, with more families, feeling more comfortable taking a vacation. COVID-19 is the last thing anyone is talking about at the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess Resort. "It feels refreshing to be able to get out of the house and not wear a mask," said Shyree Shepeard, who is in town from Delaware. "Just have a good time and enjoy ourselves."
Walt and Christine Lyman are visiting with their boys from Reno, Nevada. They say the pandemic has been tough on everyone, especially after spending last 4th of July stuck at home. "Things were shut down and restricted, and we had coverings, "said Walt Lyman. "It just wasn't the same. It didn't feel the same, so it's really nice to have the freedom this year."
Over at Sky Harbor Airport, the crowds are significantly larger with the number of passengers passing through growing every day. Friday was especially busy, with many travelers taking their first trip since the pandemic started. "Definitely apprehensive," said Sara Maier of Flagstaff. "I stayed put last year, so this is actually the first time I've been flying in a long time. It feels good. "
Last year, guests at the Princess were required to social distance and wear masks, and 4th of July festivities were cut back. This year, with more people vaccinated, the resort is going all out, to not only celebrate America's birthday, but to welcome guests back.
"People really are hungry for these real life experiences that they couldn't get in their house, or on Zoom," said Pam Gilbert, sales and marketing director for the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess Resort. "They're wanting real life experiences."