Decent weather for ice cream but not for outdoor dining

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To take advantage of our brief summer weather, OMC Smokehouse is one of many businesses in the Lincoln Park Craft District that provides outdoor seating. 

“We do our best to make it the best dining experience that they can, especially coming off a really long winter that we had. We want to get our tent set up so we can get people outside,” said Manager Benjamin Brant. “People in Duluth know how to dress for the season and they kind of layer up. It might be brisk in the morning and then you know, just take some clothes off and enjoy the day as it gets a little warmer.”

OMC Smokehouse will have a tent around their outdoor seating starting June 1. 

“People love sitting out here. The ambiance is really nice. It’s nice to watch the people walk around the Lincoln Park area,” said Brant. “We have really great food that people love, and it expands our seating in the dining room as well. So it generates more revenue for us, and we can seat more people and feed more people and overall make more profits for the business.”

Located next door to OMC Smokehouse, Dovetail Cafe sets up outdoor seating during our warmer months. Customers have already expressed interest in sitting outside.

“As soon as it is above 40 people are ready to put their shorts on and be outside,” said Owner Carmel Demairoibus. So people have asked. But we’ll get there soon.”

With the weather whiplash this week, the business has decided to wait to set up their outdoor seating.

“We ordinarily do start about now. We try to have it in April, May. or June, depending on how things go, but we play it by ear and every year is a little bit different,” said Demairoibus “It’s been very up and down. It was a late spring, so we’ve put it off and today it is evident that it was probably a good idea to put it off because it’s pretty chilly.”

Across the street, customers seemed okay with Wednesday’s east wind as they enjoyed ice cream at Love Creamery. 

“There’s obviously fluctuations yesterday with being super busy, but even on cold days we tend to have a line,” said Assistant Manager Maggie Fae. “People come in and say, ‘oh, it’s really cold weather. It’s a perfect time for ice cream’.”

As we look forward to Memorial Day weekend, many are excited for ice cream, outdoor seating, and summer in general.

“It feels great, and the Lincoln Park Craft District is humming along,” said Demairoibus.”It really feels nice to be out on a streetscape with people walking along and biking and it’s kind of fun to be part of this world.”