50th Bassmaster Classic underway; local businesses discuss economic impact

50th Bassmaster Classic underway; local businesses discuss economic impact

GUNTERSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - The Brick restaurant and bar located in Guntersville is a popular attraction for anglers that participate in the Bassmaster Classic.

“We had a couple come in last night and more came the night before as they came into town,” said Charslie Corum, manager and bartender.

Corum said every year they make sure they order enough food to serve participants and tourists that come out to the event.

“We really stocked up on food, alcohol all of the good stuff and for our orders so that way we can be prepared,” said Corum.

Adam Hayes, manager at Jomoka’s Coffee Co., said they also purchased additional food and opened early Friday but business has been slow.

“We were expecting a lot of people. I made a lot of pastries all sorts of stuff and it didn’t really pan out that way. This year wasn’t really that busy as I would hope, but it wasn’t that bad," said Hayes.

This year, the Bassmaster Classic is held at Civitan Park beginning from 7 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. and weigh ins at that Birmingham Jefferson Convention Center.

Hayes said one option that could help generate more people to local businesses if the city had more hotels.

“You have people that will stay in Huntsville and will drive down here to start the tournament then drive to Birmingham for the rest of the tournament, which really hurts businesses because they don’t get to see a lot of the local businesses,” said Hayes.

As a solution, Corum said they rented Airbnb rooms above their restaurant.

“So, like, if people want to come by and stay they are available. We have six rooms and so that helps out a little bit with our business," said Hayes.

The Bassmaster Classic will wrap up on Sunday with the winner taking home $300,000.

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