BAR HARBOR, Maine (NEWS CENTER)- Many of us are enjoying the long, holiday weekend and soaking in the last unoffical weekend of summer. Every year thousands flock to Bar Harbor and Acadia National park and this year was no different. The number of visitors was up, but some local businesses are calling this summer mediocre and preparing for fall cruise ships.
James Bence, owner of CJ's Big Dipper Ice Cream, has been in business nearly twenty-five years he said, "I think many longtime businesses will tell you it's been an average summer. But with the economy that we've had and high unemployment we are very grateful to be in business in Bar Harbor."
President of the Chamber of Commerce, Nancy Tibbetts will tell you average in Bar Harbor is still busy and sees this summer as a good sign.
"It is kind of this post-economy. I think it is starting to see people travel again," said Tibbetts.
Business owners are hoping the increase in foot traffic continues through fall as nearly one hundred and twenty ships are expected to dock in Bar Harbor.
"Cruise ships are very important to Bar Harbor. We are hoping that they are loaded with people and willing to spend a lot of money, because they are very important to our town now and our town depends on them very heavily," said Bence.
In addition, Tibbetts said cruise passengers sometimes turn into summer vacationers.
"People come and spend a few hours and they get a taste of us, but not long enough. They come back. We see a lot of people at our hotels that come back after taking a cruise," said Tibbetts.
The cruise ships are expected to arrive on September fifteenth and last through Halloween.