Canstar Community News - ONLINE EDITION
Return of Jets means game on for village bar
The return of the NHL to Winnipeg may mean the opportunity for some hockey fans to watch a new favourite team on the ice.
But for others, it may mean new business opportunities, Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce president and CEO Dave Angus says.
"A lot of people might think it’s just about selling tickets to the games, but what’s happening in Winnipeg is the games are becoming community events," Angus says.
"If you couldn’t get tickets, one option is to get friends together and watch the game at a local lounge, bar or pub. I think it’s that way whether you’re downtown, on Corydon Avenue or in Osborne Village."
Brian Allison is one of the business owners taking advantage of the new opportunity to draw people to his bar at the corner of Stradbrook Avenue and Osborne Street.
He recently changed The Academy to The Cheer Bar and Grill, a sports-themed bar. Allison says the return of the Jets after 15 years influenced him to make the switch.
"I’d been thinking about changing the name for a few years, but what really made me do it was that I couldn’t get Jets tickets," Allison says. "So I thought I’d do the next best thing — open a sports-themed bar."
Allison says The Cheer will show all Jets games and host pre- and post-game parties. He says the bar has been well received since it officially launched on Oct. 5, and the River Heights resident thinks it will do well in Osborne Village.
"There’s nothing like it around here," Allison says. "Hopefully the hockey crowd will stick around and mingle with the other crowds, and there’ll be something for everyone."
Across the street at Carlos & Murphy’s, owner Nick Diacos says he has noticed an influx of customers since the Jets launched this season.
"I think what the Jets will do for the different bars and restaurants is give people 41 more days to go out before and after the games," Diacos says.
"You see it during Bomber games, concerts, everything. We were busy before and after Moose games, too. With the Jets, we expect to see more of that."
Jets season ticket holder Amanda Jordan, 21, says she likes to make her way to the MTS Centre by stopping for a meal or drink in the Village.
The Waverley Heights resident says going to restaurants and lounges for pre- and post-game parties is part of the NHL experience.
"I already paid for the tickets, so I’ve forgotten about the cost," Jordan says. "Drinks in lounges are usually cheaper than at the MTS Centre, and going out for food and drinks really makes a day of it."
More The Sou'wester
More The Sou'wester
(1 of 16 articles for this week)05/22/2013 1:00 AM 0
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