Businesses Feel Regal Boom

By: Kim Bedford
By: Kim Bedford

Knoxville (WVLT) -- Between Saturday night's game and Sunday night's fireworks, a lot of folks may be in Downtown Knoxville this weekend to catch a movie at the new Regal Riviera Stadium 8.

But the theater isn't the only place in downtown that is benefiting from the movie goers business.

The movie money is coming in at the Regal Riviera as folks line up for the flicks.

Teresa Hatcher works in downtown Knoxville and couldn't be more excited about what she can now do off the clock.

"I think it's awesome, if we can talk our boss into two hour lunch breaks, it'd be even better," she said. "It just gives us another option. Go to the game, eat, see a movie and make a whole day of it."

The theater is bringing more than just Knoxvillians to downtown this weekend.

"It's great, we haven't been here before so it's nice to see some revitalization of the area," said Morristown resident Mark Dean.

Owners of neighboring businesses are also excited with the addition to their community.

"We couldn't wait until it opened," said Hossein Ghodrat who owns the Market Square Kitchen. "So far it's helped a lot, we see a lot more people coming downtown that we've never seen before."

Ghodrat says his restaurant was nowhere near this busy when it opened four years ago.

"We didn't have a Saturday and Sunday like we do now," he said. "Today we can't find enough good help around here."

And Ghodrat says he and several other business owners have the movie theater to thank for that.

"There's more and more people coming into the Market," he said.

Teresa just thinks what the future has in store.

"Knoxville, downtown, is well on its way to being like it used to be," she said. "My husband is thrilled and I think this is just going to add to it."

And if you haven't caught a movie here yet, the reviews are great.

"Just come on down," Mark said, "check it out."

If you're worried about finding a parking spot downtown for a movie, Riviera patrons can enjoy free parking anytime at the State Street garage.


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