Memorial Day weekend gives Lake George strong start to tourism season
Memorial Day weekend has arrived and along with it, the start of the tourism season in Lake George. As YNN's Matt Hunter found out, big crowds this weekend already have many looking toward a strong season.
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LAKE GEORGE, N.Y. -- As many attractions and restaurants as the small village has to offer, the number one draw of Lake George has always been and likely always will be the lake itself.
"When you hit waves, sometimes you flip over, that's fun,” said Michael Keenan, a 10-year-old from Westtown, who visits Lake George with his family every summer. “When you go waterskiing, you always wipe out and stuff."
Whether at Shepherds Park Beach or by the shops along Canada Street, you're sure to find big crowds in Lake George this Memorial Day Weekend. As is always the case, the holiday marks the start of the summer tourism season.
"It's crazy busy, you have no idea,” said Melissa Lashway, who is spending her second consecutive summer working at SJ Garcia’s Ice Cream on Canada Street. “People are out on the street, getting ice cream, it's great, the weather's nice."
"Things have been great, it's a good start to the season, can't complain," said Brad Chambers, whose family owns the Tall Pines Motel on Route 9.
At the Tall Pines Motel, just north of the village, Chambers says guests booked nearly every room for Friday and Saturday night and half of them on Sunday.
Last August, fierce winds from Tropical Storm Irene brought down four trees on the property and wiped out power.
Eight months later, the mess has been cleaned up and the owners have turned a bitter situation into something sweet, using downed trees to make maple syrup.
"This is our wood pile here from the remains of Irene,” said Chambers, while showing off a large wood pile in the rear of the property. “This is two of the trees that did come down during the storm and we're going to recycle the wood and use it for the sugar shack."
While Tropical Storm Irene put a damper on the end to last year's season, many here in Lake George believe a strong start to this summer's season can undo a lot of that damage.
"Every day, every week, every months counts and we make the most of it and it' definitely looking like it's a little busier,” Chambers said.
"It starts off the summer well when you do, but the weather is really what matters, I think," Lashway said.