While the summer was enjoyable, it definitely has had its challenges.
The flooding, mud slides and road closures over the past few months have wreaked havoc on all local residents.
Our community as a whole has been affected, virtually being turned upside down.
What has been the effect on local businesses? The community thrives on tourism and much of that tourism comes from Colorado Springs by way of Ute Pass.
Each business is affected differently, depending on their location, what they offer and what their hours are.
Adele Faber, the owner of Joanie’s Deli, had positive words to say, “Our business has not been adversely affected by the flooding, I think it’s because we serve breakfast and lunch and people have been concerned about flooding in the afternoon.
Also, people are stuck up here, so when the pass has been closed during the day people need a place to go and hang out and so, we’re one of the places they go. If there is any light in that tunnel, this is it.”
Of course, tourists aren’t the only ones who support the community. Faber expressed her appreciation for locals saying, “We have a lot of customers who live up here, who are regular customers, and they support us. And that is good for us.”
Renae Trichell, the owner of Brenda’s Boutique, described the mixed effects of the road closures on her business saying, “Good and bad, of course I can see the drop off in the afternoon when people want to get back to Colorado Springs.
And then sometimes during the day they’re stuck here so they come in and that’s a good thing. They may not buy anything but at least they’ve stopped in, they now know the store is here. People have said ‘we almost didn’t come because of the flooding.’”
The Dinosaur Museum, which is tied largely to tourists coming and going, has certainly faced a lack of business because of the closures of major tourist routes. “We’ve been a lot lower than we normally are as far as business goes. We are hurting on account of the flooding and fires,” said John Daigle, an employee at the museum.
Cascade has been greatly affected by flooding and road closures. One business that has been affected repeatedly over the past several months is the Wines of Colorado. This restaurant and winery even offers its guests creekside dining. Marv Parliament who owns the restaurant holds an admirable anxiety-free view of the flooding. “It's been an impact on our business but we’re still hanging in there. Its a natural problem and we can’t do much about it. We do get quite a bit of business when the road is closed, so that helps. But people are hesitant to come up the pass with threats of flooding and threats of road closure, so hopefully its about over. We have to be optimistic.”
Clearly, impacts on local businesses have been significant.
Whether the effects are good or bad business owners portray a positive outlook. Certainly optimism on the part of all residents is crucial to get through a trying time for the community.