VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – Vancouver has been anything but “Margaritaville” this spring, as days filled with sunshine have been few and far between.

The local restaurant industry depends on warmer weather this time of year, banking on patrons who want to make the most of patio season.

“The first two weeks in June has been really slow but… as long as… [the rain] is mild, or [if it goes] away, people tend to go outside. So, it hasn’t been that bad, but certainly, bright sunshine is better,” says Ian Tostenson with the BC Restaurant and Foodservices Association.

Tostenson isn’t too worried about a “bummer summer” hurting business long-term.

“If you look at a lot of restaurants in Vancouver, their patios are pretty weather-proof now. They’ve got covers and they’ve got heat lamps. It’s not like you’re going to be sitting out there, getting rained on.  There’s ways to sort of get you outside and protect you from the elements,” he explains.

Tostenson admits sunshine can make the difference between marginal business and profitability; he figures that difference can be up to 30 per cent.