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Tecumseh, MI businesses see boost from Ice Sculpture Festival after tough year

Tecumseh's 12th annual Ice Sculpture Festival wrapped up on Sunday and COVID-19 was not going to freeze their plans.

TECUMSEH, Mich. — The Downtown Tecumseh Ice Sculpture Festival is a staple in this small southeast Michigan community, that brings people from near and far.

"You see a lot of Cleveland Brown stuff, you see a lot of Ohio State stuff coming through town so that's a lot of people coming from, not here typically," said Tecumseh Brewing Company's co-founder Kyle DeWitt.

For local families, it's the perfect event to see friends and spend time together while remaining socially distant.

"I felt pretty excited just to do something outside and get the kids out to interact and stuff," said local, Andrea Allen.

Allen brought her family for the first time to see the sculptures and to get out of the house to do something.

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But for businesses in the downtown area,  this event means so much more than spending time together.

"Just doing curbside or online hasn't worked a lot for me," said Vikki Riddle, SpecialTee Prints & Pets owner. "But having people being able to actually come in has made a huge difference. I had the best day that I've ever had yesterday."

Riddle says 2020 was tough for her business which has only been open for a year.

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The spike in customers is something the shops and restaurants haven't seen in a while.

DeWitt says the crowd of people is a welcome change.

"It's nice to see an influx, it's nice to get our crew back dealing with 'the stress test' so to speak. Eventually, when we do get back open, back to normal, days like this are helping us get geared up for that," said DeWitt.

Both say they hope this weekend's ice festival is a sign that this year will be better for business.

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