HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - If you’re a sports fan, you don’t need us to tell you that football finally begins for Alabama and Auburn this weekend!
The teams with the highest scores will not be the only winners this weekend though.
WAFF’s Nolan Crane visited a Hazel Green restaurant where owners are hoping the games will help their bottom line.
Since the Coronavirus pandemic started, a lot of restaurant and bar owners have had difficulty filling their seats. However, they hope after this Saturday, everything will change when Alabama and Auburn play their first games of the season.
“I’m hoping that we get things full. I hope sports will bring in a lot more business,” said Katrina Jones.
“I hope everybody comes out and I hope it helps. I know that it’s not just me, everybody is hurting in this industry so I hope that it helps everyone,” said Karen Brazier, a local restaurant and bar owner.
Restaurants across the Tennessee Valley have been battling empty booths and tables, but owners and employees are optimistic that fans and dollars will roll in on game days.
At Knight Moves Bar and Grill in Hazel Green, the owners are doing a little extra to get you sitting at their SEC themed tables.
“We have 50 Cent hot wings all day for the game and drink specials,” said Brazier.
Early in the pandemic, Baumhowers in Huntsville also came up with creative ways to keep their doors open.
“During the Covid shut down we actually had a little bit of a challenge so we implemented the victory grocery. We had bulk meat products that you could purchase, chicken wings, tenders and breasts,” said Jones.
They are hoping fans will fill these booths so their business models can go back to normal.
“The restrictions they’re putting on us is making it very hard for us to keep our doors open especially closing now at 11, we’ve lost 90 hours a month,” said Brazier.
Restaurants are still limited to 50 percent capacity in Alabama.
If you want to support local businesses and attend a restaurant or bar on game day, you still have to follow the rules like wearing a mask and social distancing.