DELAND — A need for more space prompted Jim Cara to move his downtown pop-culture business from the east side of Woodland Boulevard to the west, but the afternoon sun bearing down on his storefront pushed him to move even faster.
“That’s the sunny side of the street. There are no tall buildings on this side protecting that side from the sun,” Cara said of the former location of his Carasells Pop-Culture Collectibles. “That and the fact that there was only a window unit air conditioner over there, we could never get it cool enough.”
Merchants throughout downtown DeLand — on both the east and the west side of Woodland Boulevard — say they see the effects of summer heat on their businesses.
“It slows everything down. A lot of people won’t come out because it’s too hot,” said Cliff Weikal, who owns Cliff’s Books on the east side of Woodland.