Local News

Manitou Springs businesses worry flooding will scare away tourists

Businesses worry tourists will flee

MANITOU SPRINGS, Colo. - Flashing flooding on Monday night brought back fears that there could be a repeat of the lackluster 2012 summer season.

Manitou Springs business owners said the Waldo Canyon Fire kept away many tourists.

"We saw a 20 percent decline in business," said Dave Symonds, owner of Stagecoach Inn.  Symonds blames lots of national media coverage for the loss.  He said his relatives thought the entire state was on fire.

"We don't want people to think we are drowning over here or on fire," said Tina Blea, manager of the Olive Tap.  Blea said her business slowed about 15 percent last summer.  Now, Blea said, the community is trying to cope with flooding as best they can.  "All the flood preparation we've done with meetings through the chamber, the city, I think people are better prepared.  I think yesterday was a good test of what we can do and what we need to be prepared for," said Blea.

Marcy Morrison, COO of the Manitou Chamber of Commerce, said so far the city seems busy as usual on Tuesday.  Her office was evacuated on Monday because of the flash flood warning, but, fortunately didn't receive any damage.  She said she watched the water rising rapidly in the creek.

Tourism leaders in Manitou Springs used social media last year to help bring people back after the Waldo Canyon Fire.

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