MISSOULA, Mont. -

Local business owners are excited to wrap up one of the busiest tourism season they've seen since the recession.

Whether it's a burger, a milkshake or a hot dog, customers lined up to grab a bite from a local hot spot near Seeley Lake. The Ice Cream Place is a Seeley Lake staple. The store is family-run and has been open for 24 years. The owner Laurel Daniels tells us this year stands out as one of the busiest ever.

She said it's a combination of more tourists visiting the lake and local customers.

"We open in May and stay open until the end of September just for the locals so they can come back, so they won't stand in line when the line's all the way out to the highway," said Daniels.

NBC Montana asked Assistant Director of Economic Analysis Kara Grau why Montana has more visitors.

"Montana tends to get around 75 percent to 80 percent return visitors, so we know people like what they are doing and seeing here and they come back. This year we're having a lot of first time visitors, it seems," said Grau.

AAA predicts nearly 30 million people will hit the road for one last summer vacation this Labor Day weekend.
 
The Ice Cream Place is open for another month so people still have time to indulge in that burger or milkshake.