NORTH CONWAY, NH – The unofficial start to summer was mostly positive for Mount Washington Valley Businesses despite a cloudy forecast.
According to the Mt Washington Valley Chamber of Commerce businesses responses reporting to an informal survey this weekend ranged from saying sales were 65% up from last year to slightly down.
The gloomy weather forecast did play a small factor in weekend tourism. Becca Deschenes Director of Marketing at Cranmore Mountain Resort said that the three day weekend as a whole was down from last year, adding that When looking at just Monday, they were up over last year. Deschenes noted that she did think the weather scared people away.
However Susan Logan, Manager of Marketing and Events for Conway Scenic Railroad reported that the forecast benefitted them saying that Saturday and Sunday were up 64% and 65%, respectively, over last year.
With rain in the forecast over the unofficial start of summer many valley businesses thrived.
Dot Seybold, General Manager of Settlers Green Outlets in North Conway, told the chamber that sentiment among store managers there was very positive, noting that the bad weather helped push people into the outlet centers.
General Manager of the Royalty Inn in Gorham, Conrad Klefos, told the chamber that ATV tourism has been a great driver of business for inn with an estimated 80-percent of his guests there to enjoy ATVing. Klefoes also told the chamber that he predicts a great season due to the enthusiasm for ATVing in the northern region.
The Chamber reports that traveler sentiment is positive for travel this summer, and even a forecast for rainy weather over the Memorial Day weekend didn’t squelch visitors’ pent up desire to spend time in the Valley.
Lauren Hawkins, Director of Marketing at Story Land, shared that while they feared the weather forecast would have a negative impact on park attendance, the excitement of Story Land’s opening prevailed. Hawkins said that the weekend was up slightly despite gloomy weather.
When it came to Mount Washington Valley lodging the chamber heard wealth of positivity. Donna Pearce, Owner/Innkeeper at the Admiral Peary House in Fryeburg, said that between weddings in the area, concerts and Fryeburg Academy graduation, the inn was filled with families.
In addition, Bill Petrone, Owner/Innkeeper at the Buttonwood Inn shared that bookings were up over last year for the Memorial Day weekend.
Craig Clemmer, Director of Sales and Marketing at the Omni Mount Washington Hotel, also confirmed that the hotel was sold out for the Memorial Day weekend.
Despite the cloudy weather the Memorial Day weekend still set a positive tone for the summer tourism season. Tourism experts are predicting a strong summer for travel.
Susan Logan confirmed that advance ticket sales are strong for the Conway Scenic Railroad, while lodging properties reported that the prevalence of last minute reservations makes it hard to predict.
For more information on visiting Mt Washington Valley, please visit www.MtWashingtonValley.org