Marinas Looking Forward To Summer

Tuesday, May 20th 2008, 11:19 pm
By: News On 6

Sunny skies and warm weather are welcome news for Oklahoma's lakeside businesses.  Last Memorial Day was literally a washout.  News On 6 anchor Craig Day reports lake-goers hope this year will be a different story.

At Paradise Cove Marina on Fort Gibson Lake, the shelves are fully stocked, and the last minute work is being done to get ready for the Memorial Day weekend.  The water looks nice and normal.  For businesses along the lake normal is a good thing.

"This weekend is going to say a lot about how the year is going to be.  I believe," said Ann Davis with Paradise Cove Marina.

Ann Davis hopes it's better than last year when the water level was way above normal, wiping out most of the summer recreation season.

Many other marinas and lake businesses all across our area were in the same situation.  As the rain came down and the lakes filled up, business dried up.

"Last year, the water was up about where that rock is, I'd say about four feet above where are heads are right now," said Mike Fawcett with Redbud Marina.

Mike Fawcett runs Redbud Marina on Oologah Lake.  He says last summer is a season he would like to forget.  Business was down 60% because of the high water.

"In the marina business, you have three months to make your money for the year.  And if you don't do it, it's tough," said Mike Fawcett of Redbud Marina.

But, this year, both lakes are only slightly above normal and are ready for lake-goers.

The popular Tall Chief Cove swimming beach on Skiatook Lake, which was closed part of last year, is now open, too.  It's all a good sign, for a much better season.

"I think it will be a lot better.  I'm expecting a 150% improvement over last year," said Mike Fawcett with Redbud Marina.

"This year, the Corps has done a fantastic job getting the water levels down for this holiday weekend. We're looking for a big weekend," added Ann Davis with Paradise Cove Marina.