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Local restaurants and bars prepare for gameday business

They are expecting more business than usual this Monday night.
Published: Jan. 11, 2021 at 5:58 PM CST
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DOTHAN, Ala. (WTVY) - As Alabama and Ohio State go head to head in the College Football Playoff National Championship several people will decide whether to watch the game out or stay in. Local restaurants and bars everywhere are preparing for larger crowds than a usual Monday night.

“A lot of the small businesses took a big hit in the past year and some bars and restaurants weren’t fortunate to make it through quarantine and all the hardships that we faced,” Garrison Smith, General Manager of Houligans Irish Pub, said. “But like I said, we’ve been here for a while and if it wasn’t for those regulars we probably wouldn’t have made it.”

Houligans Irish Pub is expecting several regulars to come out to watch the game, but this year’s championship night will look different than previous.

The bar will only be at half capacity.

”With the coronavirus we want to take the necessary precautions so it won’t be like usual,” Smith said. “Usually we have people cooking and bringing food but I do expect a good crowd here and watch the game.”

Cheering on the Crimson Tide or the Buckeyes while adhering to CDC guidelines.

“We can only do what we can do, you know, we got a good thing going here and we don’t want to jeopardize that as well as put anybody’s health at risk,” Smith said.

Restaurants work as a team during busy days like today to get orders together for fans. Things & Wings expects to see an increase in take out orders for fans staying in.

“We’re a family owned business and days like today really help after a year I think everybody’s had,” Makesha Kimbro, supervisor at Things & Wings southside location, said.

The restaurant increased both in front and back house staff for gameday – prepping some foods ahead of time.

“We just try to be ahead of the game, so to speak,” Kimbro said.

Both businesses say they see an increase in sales on days like today.

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