CCU's Resort Tourism researchers report a great fall season - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

CCU's Resort Tourism researchers report a great fall season

MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WMBF) - CCU's Resort Tourism Program predicts a great fall season and say their numbers usually reflect how local businesses are doing.

CCU's Resort Tourism Director, Taylor Damonte, says lodging numbers have been up and hospitality fees are used to track where people are spending their money. He says those fees usually match up with their findings. But in the golf world, the summer season has been a swing and a miss, mostly due to weather.

"Hospitality fees are generated from restaurants, attractions as well as lodging," Damonte explains.

Though some golfers may have been in town, they were rained out. The first Assistant Golf Professional at Wild Wing Plantation, Alex Hodgman, explains it's unfortunate because people pay for tee time in advance.

"They don't really have much to do, they just keep those rain-checks that never expire and come back and try another time. It's the local play, the locals don't come out and play when it's rainy so that does hurt the golf course," Hodgman said.

Bars and restaurants have a different peak season, their summer numbers did balance out with CCU's findings for the most part.

Atlas Tap House opened in March and the owner, Aaron Gifford, says they hit the ground running their first summer season.

"We couldn't be happier with the summer we've had. Being a new business, kind of the new kids on the block as it were, we kind of exceeded our expectations of what the summer might be," Gifford said.

But they have seen a drop the past couple of weeks with the beginning of fall. However, on the golf course, the weather and the start of the fall season have been a hit. The Wild Wing Plantation saw over 200 golfers Friday.

"We need these rounds and the middle of October should be a real busy time for us and we're definitely getting the rounds this weekend for sure," Hodgman said.

As for Atlas, though the off season is just starting, they are seeing some more locals and the recent weather has brought them right back up.

"With the rain especially the past few weeks, we haven't gotten a whole lot of use out of the back deck, but you can see tonight we kind of filled it up for the most part so when the weather comes around the people start to kind of come around too," Gifford said.

The Wild Wing Plantation and Atlas Tap House are hopeful if the weather keeps up, October will bring some great business.

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