Super Sunday Matchup: Local Bars and Super Bowl Sunday

Football is a big draw for local bars.

But will this weekend’s Super Bowl bring out the crowds here in the Valley?
Local bars and restaurants expect to be busy, but they claim the big game won’t bring out the fans as much as you’d think.
Lee Engebretson knows where he’ll be for the game.

At O’Leary’s Pub in Moorhead.
“Sunday I’m gonna be right here watching the Super Bowl game,” Engebretson says. “This is the best place to be.”
He won’t be alone. Football is always a big draw for local bars.
“Football season is very important to us,” says Marissa West, GM at Mick’s Office and J.C. Chumleys.
Places like O’Leary’s and Mick’s Office have established game day specials.
West touts, “Happy Hour all day long.”
O’Leary’s GM Seth Marts adds, “$7 pitchers. Half off large pizzas.”
That is why they aren’t doing anything extra.

They say it’s not really needed.
“We’ve got a good clientele that comes in every Sunday,” Marts says, “and it’s just something that people are gonna show up for anyways.”
Local bars and taverns say they expect to be busy during the game.

But curiously, they say they might be busier before the game than during the action.
“People like to pre-party before the Super Bowl,” West says, “so we’ll see them at 11o’clock when the doors open.”
Once the game starts, a few people skip the bars and head home.
“A lot of people do house parties,” adds Marts, “so it’s one of those holidays you expect more out of.”
It also doesn’t help that the Super Bowl pits the Denver Broncos against the Carolina Panthers, two teams from outside the region.
“Vikings or Green Bay, I’d say it would be a lot busier,” Marts says, “but at the same time, as long as it’s a good, competitive game, people are gonna be interested to watch it.”
But football fans we talked to do have a preference. They want to see the Broncos win it all.
While pro football has brought people out to local bars all fall and winter, bar managers say that business pales in comparison to the crowds the NDSU Bison bring out for its games.

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