Gas Prices Cutting Into Fun

As gas prices continue to rise throughout East Texas, even those in search of a little fun are starting to feel the pinch. The price for a gallon of gas topped the $1.80 mark this weekend in East Texas. The price for gas has become a major concern for folks not used to paying the higher prices.

The high costs are just part of the deal for one group. It was a good time for folks out at the Lake Palestine Marina near Tyler. Sunny skies and calm winds made for a great day out on the lake, but high gas prices can sink even the happiest of moods.

"It's about $40 more than what I paid last year," said boater Hull Barbee. "Yeah it hurts."

The high prices have come as a surprise to many, considering the drastic jump from last year. According to AAA the price for a gallon of gas this time last year was a $1.38 a gallon. Right now the statewide average sits at $1.81.

Andy Hudson manages the marina. He said despite the price, about 25 people a day buy their gas at the marina.

"Yeah, people complain but they still fill up," he said. "A boat is a luxury item, you don't have to have a boat, so you just spend a little more money."

That expense has gone up , especially for folks like Will Farrar. He and his family hit the water about three to four times a week, spending hundreds on gas.

"For us it's worth it." Farrar said. "It costs a lot to go to Six Flags and to movies and concerts and everything else and for us it's a form of recreation and family entertainment so it's something that we're willing to pay for."

The price of fun that could keep going up. If you wait to fill up at the lake expect to pay even more for a tank of gas. Prices out at the marina average about 50 cents more than at a roadside station.

AAA expects prices to remain high throughout the summer.

Chris Gibson, reporting