***Bumped and Updated***
It’s now 2:24 EDT and we’re done putting people in the water. We kicked some serious butt today, people. We put out 50% more canoes today than we did on the Sunday of Memorial Day last year. Woo hoo!
We own Gotts’ Landing Canoe Rental and Trophy Waters Fly Shop located on the AuSable River in Northern Michigan. We cater to the tourists from down state who come up for weekends in the summer to go canoeing, kayaking, rafting, tubing, and fly fishing, so our business is directly affected by the rising gas prices. Memorial Day weekend is our first big weekend of business, and I am pleased to say that we are on track to meet last year’s sales. We made about the same today as we did on the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend last year, and we’re only a few hundred dollars shy of meeting our sales from last year’s Memorial Day Sunday with just the reservations we have so far alone. Since we’ll have walk-in customers as well, we should meet and exceed our Sunday sales without any problem.
Update: HughS mentioned in his comment that South Carolina resorts appear to be doing well this weekend, including reservations for the upcoming months. We are experiencing the same thing here. Our reservations for the months of July and August, which is when we make 75% of our revenue for the season, are on track compared to last year, if not slightly ahead. In fact, we already have two Saturdays where we’re almost sold out of equipment. Last year, we didn’t experience that until the first couple of weeks into June.
Other local businesses appear to be doing well, too. Last night, we went out to dinner at Garland and we noticed that the parking lot was jammed with cars from Michigan, obviously, Ontario (Canada), Ohio, Kentucky and other nearby states.