Summerhaven still slow despite park re-open

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TUCSON, Ariz. -- The Coronado National Forest re-opened more than a week ago, and while campers and hikers are taking to the trails again, Summerhaven businesses say they're still experiencing a lag in sales.

The general store in Summerhaven is known for its variety of fudge and convenience.

"We offer anything a camper would forget," said General Store Owner Phil Mack.

Mack says business is better, now that the forest is back open. However, the store is still serving fewer customers.

"I still get phone calls everyday asking can we come up to Summerhaven. And they've always been able to come up to Summerhaven so there's been some confusion," said Mack.

Another factor is hampering profits is fire restrictions.

"I've only dealt with it maybe once since the Aspen Fire in 2003, so it's not normal," said Mack.

Owners of the jewelry stand outside say they're anxious to see business pick up, as more people learn the forest is open for recreation.

"People are very sentimental about the mountain especially since the fire and they like to come up and be supportive of the merchants," said Jayne Poole with Poole Enterprises.

"It's just nice to be around nature, be out of the city," said visitor Narianna Petty.

Forest visitors are just as relieved as business owners.

"We stopped at windy point, and the nice weather up here, and since it's finally open we're probably going to go up to the ski slopes," said Petty.

A little fresh air plus souvenirs, knick knacks and the stuff you forgot to pack.

Summerhaven merchants hope those incentives bring more people into town.

"When it's 105 down there in the desert we're 75 so everybody runs to the mountain," said Mack.

Fire restrictions are in place at the Coronado National Forest. That means no campfires and no smoking unless you're in a vehicle or building.

Also in Summerhaven Sunday, beagles up for adoption . The Southern Arizona beagle rescue group hosted the event to promote some special summer prices.

Through the end of August, you can adopt a beagle for half price. Members of the non profit say they're ready to help people find that perfect four-legged friend.

"We have approximately 41.  All the dogs are in our homes.  We have foster homes for the dogs and that way we all get to know the dogs' personalities and what they like and what they don't like," said Timothy Moblin from the Southern Arizona Beagle Rescue.

The beagles are priced between $40 and $100.

Also on Sunday could be heard the sound of Summerhaven's "Music on the Mountain."

The concert is held every Sunday. This Sunday's musical acts included the Van Dykes.

The event was made possible by the Live Acoustic Venue Association.

The non profit group is made up of volunteers who aim to connect musicians with comfortable settings.