Tribe home opener helps downtown Cleveland business boom

Tribe home opener helps downtown Cleveland business boom

CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - All day long Tuesday, bars and businesses stayed busy around Progressive Field thanks to the Indians home opener.

"(It's been) amazing, non-stop crazy," said Clevelander bartender Christina Cavotta.

Downtown bartenders describe the atmosphere as energetic in downtown Cleveland, as the Tribe kicked off the 2017 season at home.

"(I'm) having a good time, opening day Cleveland. Let's go Tribe fans," said fan Liberty George.

Thousands of people packed bars and restaurants, before, during and after, the triumphant home opener.

"They all showed up (Tuesday) in numbers, so that was good," said Huron Point Tavern Owner Jeff Burson.

Burson said last summer was his busiest season ever. He hopes to match that this year.

"If we have a repeat of that, boom, done," he said.

Judging by what many downtown workers saw, Tuesday Indians fans already began to exceed expectations.

"I would say (the home opener) was way busier than it was last year," Cavotta said.

It isn't just bars and restaurants benefiting from the Tribe, businesses, like the Kimpton Schofield Hotel, are as well.

"(The game) just brings a lot of people in, especially people who live nearby come for staycations," said the Kimpton Schofield Hotel Front Office Supervisor Lynnea Nikiforakis.

Many hotels near the ballpark said they were close to capacity Tuesday night, thanks to post-game walk-ins. This type of business is something they planned and hoped for after the Indians' success last year.

"They went to the series last year, so we're hoping they get the same momentum and we get a lot of wins this season," said Nikiforakis.

For businesses, a win for the Indians also means a win for downtown Cleveland.

"I'm really excited for the season. It's going to be crazy down here," said Cavotta.

As the celebration wrapped up Tuesday night, bars, restaurants and hotels already began to prepare for the next couple days. The Tribe is home through the weekend, which means more good news for downtown business.

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