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GALVESTON, Texas -- It's that time of the year again. Memorial Day weekend means it s the unofficial start to summer, so bust out your beach chairs, lounge back and enjoy the waves.

I like this beach, it's the only one you can drink from an open container. We're enjoying it, Ester Jiminez, of Houston, referring to East Beach.

Police are out in full force, patrolling and making sure everyone is behaving. They are also making sure no one is walking around with glass bottles in their hands.

For many people, it's their first time on East Beach, which was hard hit during Hurricane Ike.

It was so depressing, like wow, you would never expect anything like that to happen to you, said Alyssa Albis from Cypress.

Now, nearly five years later, there is a new pavilion, a boardwalk and much more. The cost of the renovations totaled to about $1.6 million.

It's beautiful. They cleaned it up so nice, they got umbrella's everywhere, said Albis.

While people are having fun in the sun, many still have the meaning of this holiday weekend in the back of their minds.

It means something special, people fight for us and they saved our lives, said Emily Melara from Katy. Her aunt is in Afghanistan, and she's hoping she can see her on the Internet.

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