Rainy Summer Puts a Damper on SML Business

Smith Mountain Lake, VA - The official last day of summer is still about three weeks away, but it's already been an unusual season as far as weather is concerned.

Cool and wet weather has really affected some businesses on Smith Mountain Lake.

Since June 1, some areas are as much as eight to 10 inches above average when it comes to rainfall.

Business owners at Smith Mountain Lake say water is good, just not when it is falling from the sky during their peak season.

Tourists come from all over the region to Smith Mountain Lake, with hopes of soaking up sunshine and enjoying time out on the water.

When rain and storms force people off the lake, though, that means less money for people who depend on the lake staying busy.

"Early in the summer, it was raining just about every weekend," Bob Attanasio, Manager of Parrot Cove Boat Rentals said.

Attanasio says when it comes to money, their bottom line is below where they were this time last year, but he says the rain isn't always a bad thing.

"That keeps what they call full pond, which makes it easier to boat around here so you're not hitting your propellers on the shoals and the rift raft and stuff like that, so it's actually helped us to keep customers from hitting and damaging props," Attanasio explained.

The cooler temperatures are a factor as well. More than half of the month of August saw temperatures below average.

Attanasio says lower temperatures have also been a good thing, however.

"It just makes it nicer when it just gets up to the 80's in August. People can enjoy it more, they are just not that miserable," Attanasio said.

Business aside, Attanasio says his dock hands have enjoyed the milder summer.

"Just like the dock hands down here, we enjoy it when it's in the 80's also instead of 98 degrees and high humidity," Attanasio said.

Attanasio also says their busiest part of the week is typically the weekends. He says a big reason their sales are down from last year is because for the most part this summer, rain always seemed to hit on the weekends.

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