NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - With the Saints hosting the NFC championship game Sunday (Jan. 20), bars and restaurants near the Superdome are expecting big business, and they’re planning accordingly.
If you’re looking for a place to pregame or catch the championship match-ups, look no further than the CBD, with bars and restaurants like Walk-On’s, Juan’s Flying Burrito and Reginelli’s all planning on broadcasting the Super Bowl-deciding games.
Walk-On’s manager, Marshall Hahn said the restaurant has become a Mecca for Saints fans this season and expects no different this week.
“There’s no better place to get the game day experience,” Hahn said. “Game days are where it’s at for us so we will be probably wrapped around the block.”
That’s why he said the sports bar is bringing in extra help, security and plenty of booze and food this weekend.
“It’s going to be fun. People are going to be having a blast, there’s going to be people all over the place,” Hahn said, who’s opening early Sunday to accommodate the excitement. “I’ve probably gotten about ten or 15 phone calls this morning just about that, about how early they can be in the building.”
Walk-On’s will open at 8:30 a.m. for the 2 p.m. kickoff, but they aren’t the only business located close to the dome that’s expecting big crowds.
Joshua Willis is the kitchen manager at Juan’s Flying Burrito and said he expects the restaurant to be filled wall-to-wall all day. Aside from regular lunch and dinner service, Willis is trying to get a head start on food prep, ready for when Juan’s opens early for fans.
“Get their little tailgate going on, come get some of our delicious alcohol and have fun,” Willis said.
Reginelli’s manager Donald Davidson said their Poydras Street location is sure to bring in plenty of customers.
“Just the foot traffic alone. People coming from the hotels, coming from downtown. It’s a constant stream of people,” Davidson said, who fully anticipates taking advantage of that foot traffic. “We sell booze out front, we have to go drinks for the people who don’t have time to come in. We’re constantly full, just trying to get people in and out as much as possible.”
Even though it can get pretty crazy, these hospitality workers said they wouldn’t have it any other way.
“There’s a lot of chaos. You have people standing all around the bars, people standing around the bars,” Willis said. “It’s awesome to me. I like it.”