It’s another sign that the economy is recovering.
Cottage sales are starting to move again, and general activity is much stronger in the last couple of months than it was last year, said Ian Forsyth, manager of the Cottage Show and the Big Backyard Show, held concurrently at Lansdowne Park over the weekend.
Last year’s shows were affected by the recession, said Forsyth. While attendance didn’t take much of a hit, “I think there were certainly a lot of people who came and kept their wallets in their pockets.”
This year saw a huge improvement. More than 12,000 people attended the shows, which featured 235 exhibitors, including landscapers, dock and deck builders, craftspeople and dealers for boats and watercraft, including kayaks, paddleboats and canoes.
The improved economy and the great weather this year have compelled more people to buy, said Mark Hurst of Hurst Marina.
“There’s definitely more of a sense of urgency to buy,” he said. “People have been putting off their purchases, but now, they’re ready to act.
“We have a lot of water systems in the eastern Ontario area, and people like to venture to all of them,” he said, noting that 12-foot kayaks have been selling well.
While the green movement is slowly slipping into all industries, it’s always been in the cottage industry, said Forsyth.
“Cottagers tend to be more green anyway because of the environments that they have their cottages in,” he said. “They really have an interest in preserving what they have at the cottage.
It’s very much in their consciousness.”