TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (WBRC) - Most business owners view the Iron Bowl as one of their biggest money makers of the year. But businesses WBRC visited Wednesday in Tuscaloosa admit they don’t know what to expect or they expect a continuation of what’s been a down year business-wise.
David Jones does not anticipate the typical rush of customers this year at Alabama Express on the Strip that usually comes when the Iron Bowl is in town.
“There’s be a whole lot less folks here. If you don’t have a ticket nobody is coming to the game. So, it won’t be the electricity here that there normally is for a game of this magnitude,” Jones explained.
Jones based his expectation on what sales have been like for home games this season. He said business is off by more than 80%. That’s why they stopped buying new merchandise and even cut back on payroll.
“We’re really on the fence on what Iron Bowl might look like for us this year,” according to Laura Moss.
She owns Moe’s Original Barbecue in downtown Tuscaloosa. Moss said business has “really been different” this year because of coronavirus. Moss felt they’ve seen a boost this year when it comes to selling Thanksgiving meals. Football gameday business is not as bad as they thought it would be, even limited to 50% capacity.
“We’ve been able to fill up the restaurant for the different games and still have a nice environment and do some good sales. We want it to go back to the way it was,” Moss continued.