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Some Central Coast tourist attractions struggle to keep up with a slower summer

Posted at 8:24 PM, Jul 05, 2020

For most Americans, summer vacation is put on hold, or at least scaled back this year.

This slow down in crowds is leading to a decline in Summer sales for one Central Coast tourist attraction.

Central Coast Kayaks in Shell Beach says the pandemic has impacted their business hard, even after reopening.

Co-owner Tom Reilly says in the past month, the shop's kayak tours has dropped by 40%.

“With 2020 and COVID-19 virus we’ve seen a huge drop in sales because we cannot get product into our store," Reilly said.

Fewer tourists traveling during the summer-pandemic adds another barrier for the Central Coast shop.

“As more and more people are staying away from the Central Coast due to COVID-19, our business drops much like a wave getting larger and then decreasing over time and coming back up," Reilly said.

The shop says even weather conditions have taken a toll on the kayak tours as well, with dangerous swells in Shell Beach canceling tours for many guests this past weekend.

On Sunday, Shell Beach saw some crowds, but the amount of people enjoying the Central Coast was fewer than in years past.

Grover Beach local Javin Pinegar says it's nice to see people out again, but COVID-19 restrictions are still making this difficult this summer.

"It is a bummer not being able to hang out with friends, but you do see people starting to come to the beach a little bit," he said.

Some say the calmer crowds this weekend, bring some relief from the usual summer hum.

West Lake Village fisherman Matt Biederman says he is here visiting in-laws for the holiday weekend. He says summertime in California this year is a bit different than in years prior.

"Not as busy as last year," Biederman said. "Definitely a lot less people around, less traffic on the beach."

Many people could be seen in Morro Bay this weekend, enjoying kayaking, sailing, and paddle-boarding on the water, while still keeping distancing in place.

Morro Bay Police say however, the crowds are smaller than last year.