Businesses around Mark Twain Lake are buzzing this summer.
These days it's not uncommon to see folks crowded into the Boudreaux Visitor's Center museum. Each weekend brings more than 400 people through these doors. Army Corps of Engineers Park Ranger Ben Sapp says it's a good sign that tourism is up at Mark Twain Lake.
Sapp said, "We've seen an increase in lodging stays and our campground is filled up and of course the longer people stay the more money they spend and it's good for everybody."
However, Mark Twain Lake hasn't had large numbers of boaters for a couple of years.
Folks say there are a number of reasons why it's been slow. Part of it is the water itself. The last couple of years there have been e-coli concerns on Mark Twain State Park beach. Folks say although that didn't impact other beaches it might have scared some people off.
Another reason is the wet years we've had since 2008, leading to high water and flooded beaches.
The economy didn't help anything either. But this year it's a different story.
Take the Mark Twain Landing. Business is up more than 30 percent this year.
Hundreds go to the water park during the week...with more than a thousand on the weekends. The campground and motels here are full too.
General manager Rita Owens said, "There are more local people. They are realizing they don't have to travel too far to have a vacation or a weekend getaway."
Businesses hope that thought continues making "having fun" the business plan for the summer.
By the way, if you like to fish we've got good news.
We've been told by some local anglers that the fishing at the Mark Twain Lake is the best it's been in years!
Share your stories below or on our Facebook page here ... we know many of our viewers are Mark Twain Lake regulars and we want to hear all about it!