Weather more important than economy to Bellingham tourism industry

When it comes to trying to guess how many customers will visit her business, Patricia Alesse doesn't need to look at economic reports. Her best gauge is looking out her window at the sky or at a temperature gauge.

Alesse, who has operated The C Shop in Birch Bay since 1971, has learned over the years that the weather is more of determining factor on her sales than most economic news. In the past, a hot summer day can be busier than a holiday when it comes to sales of candy, ice cream and other goodies at her shop.

"On a nice day, we'll get more day trippers along with the people that are already visiting Birch Bay," Alesse said. "No matter what the economy is doing, people want to get out and enjoy the weather."

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