The forecast for the May long weekend looks hot, which is great news for businesses in Gimli.
Good weather means packed streets and big money for business owners there.
Gimli Mayor Randy Woroniuk tells 680 CJOB that the weather is key for their economy to thrive.
“We’ve gone through a couple of years where we’ve had some rainy weekends, and you can just see it. It’s just very depressing because not a lot of people are out here,” Woroniuk explains. “To me, the measure of success is coming on a Saturday afternoon and you can’t find a parking spot for two blocks.”
Woroniuk says this weekend is usually when traffic picks up in Gimli, but he’s hoping the town can become a popular destination year-round.
“With the Winterfest in March, we are slowly getting there. Most of the time, we’re open year-round. I think people have to embrace winter, it’s time to go outside and enjoy yourself, summer and winter.”
According to Woroniuk, a successful summer means smiles on the faces of business owners, more of which are coming to Gimli.
“This year alone, on Saturday will be my fifth grand opening for a new business. We’ve seen more new businesses coming into town, so that’s a plus. I believe we’re growing. Some don’t make it, some of them do. It’s our responsibility to make our town friendly.”
Some issues that came up last summer, like a ban on dogs on the boardwalk that was reversed and work on the breakwater, are done and over with: dogs are allowed as long as they are on a non-retractable six-foot leash, and the seawall is finished and covered with artwork.
“All the fishers that were displaced last year, come on back. The fishing is great out there, and you have full access to the pier now.”
Today was like the calm before the storm, with a few dozen seagulls wading in the sand and no humans around from which to poach a snack. But come this weekend, with a forecast of sun and temperatures in the mid-twenties, the beaches should be packed and the town transformed into a bustling hotspot.