Summer tourism very much dependent on the weather

Summer at Cowichan Lake is long-known as the booster that helps keep many local business open year-round.

Summer at Cowichan Lake is long-known as the booster that helps keep many local business open year-round.

This past year saw a few more storefronts emptying, with at least one more – Silverstone – on the near horizon.

Overall, the businesses the Gazette contacted for this story, report an average summer for business.

“It’s about the same as last year,” Kidd’s Bed and Breakfast owner David Kidd said. “Probably okay, considering expectations.”

“We’ve had more Americans than  usual, but that’s only 10 per cent of our business.”

About 1/4 of those staying at the bed and breakfast are Europeans.

With businesses closing in much greater numbers than those opening, the Cow Cafe’s owners Matt Heyne and Dave Sharrow managed an impressive feat, in purchasing the Aroma restaurant.

“It was a really good summer,” Heyne said.

“With the weather we had in July, it was a slow start, but we still kept going.”

“There were a lot of mid-day tubers and beach-goers.”

The unfortunate closure of the Dermod and Dudley’s Pub had a fortunate effect on the business partners’ two stores, in that their lunch business increased.

At the Lakeview Park Campground, manager Dalton Smith reports a decent summer.

“We made some money this year. We just about hit our target for revenue projections,” he said.

“We have had a number of guests from the Circle Route, so some people are stopping for that.”

These visitors have helped insure the campground performs its most important function, Smith said; keeping local people employed.