OSAGE BEACH, Mo. (KMIZ)
Despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, business owners at the Lake of the Ozarks said this year is one for the books.
Greg Surdyke, Owner of Surdyke YAHAMA said on Saturday that this summer and even this labor day weekend has been the busiest they have ever had.
“What a summer it's been 2020," Surdyke said. "We're going to remember forever."
Surdyke said he and others were scared and paranoid about what was going to happen as everyone shut down due to the pandemic, but once they were allowed to reopen business picked up.
Surdyke said since reopening, he has had a hard time keeping his inventory of boats and wave runners.
He said they have cut down on their hours and increased cleaning, but that hasn't stopped the flood of customers wanting to get out on the lake.
"It just got busy," Surdyke said. "And it has not let off. We had our best summer ever. We're really blessed.”
Surdyke said business hasn't let up this holiday weekend.
“It's a busier than normal Labor Day," Surdyke said. "There's more people in town right now. Our rentals are booked, we're running out of product. It's phenomenal."
Surdyke said they have cut down on their business hours and increased cleaning but that hasn't stopped the flood of customers wanting to get out on the lake.
Michael’s Steak Chalet also had to close due to COVID-19, but since reopening in May, the owner said business has been booming.
"We took a hit for two months but since we reopened," Boyles said. "We're up probably 25 to 30%. So it's been a good year I can't complain about about that."
Boyles said his restaurant has adjusted to reservations only. He said business has been so good, he has had to turn down 100 customers each weekend.
Boyles said his restaurant is already booked for the entire holiday weekend and thinks business could continue like this for a while.
"We're completely booked tomorrow," Boyles said. "So if anybody calls for reservations we're telling them, 'Hey, you got to come next Thursday.' So it's a good problem to have."
Boyles believes this summer has been busier because people just want to get out and once they see what the lake has to offer, they end up loving it.
"It's kind of like our little secret is out," Boyles said.
Both business owners say having business back up and running has helped tremendously in making up for the profit they lost due to the pandemic shutting them down earlier this year.