High temps equal big bucks? 'Selling summer' in the Valley

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By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey

PHOENIX --The soaring temperatures can not only take a toll on the people in the heat, but on businesses around the state and in the Valley.

But some local merchants are doing their best to cash in on the triple digit heat.

One of those places is CHURN, an old-fashioned ice cream shop on North Central Avenue near Camelback Road.

"In the summer, when the heat spikes, everyone loves to come down and get ice cream. We have a big patio in the back with misters, so it's a place you can go to get a break from the heat," said Craig Demarco.

While the ice cream shop stays fairly busy year round, they definitely see a spike during the summer.

"As soon as 1:00 hits, there's usually a line out the door," Demarco said.

They are not the only shop selling summer.

At the Thirsty Lion Pub & Grill in Tempe, a heat wave means a break for your wallet.

"When it hits 110, we do half price margaritas and mojitos," said manager Sean Snelling.

He said in order to survive the summer, they have to get creative.

"As it gets hot, you have to do a few things to entice people to come out," Snelling said.

Local resorts are well aware of that, offering discounted room rates and creating water-park style setups for their guests.

The Fairmont Scottsdale Princess has two big slides, a zip-line and other hot-weather attractions.

The state is also doing its best to "sell summer."

The Arizona Office of Tourism recently kicked off its new campaign, targeting people in Southern California.

"As the Los Angeles beaches get crowded and they look for a place to go to get away from the day-to-day routine, they really do love to come to Arizona," AOT's Deputy Director Mark Stanton said.

In order to get people to see beyond the heat, they market beyond the Valley.

"Everything North of Prescott is really in its prime season," Stanton said.

The AOT's efforts don't stop there though, he said, so Southern California is not the only audience the state is after.

"We're encouraging those individuals and residents to consider a 'staycation', spend their summer dollars and summertime adventures here in Arizona," he said.