Game day and Boomsday mean big business in Knoxville

By: Hilary Magacs Email
By: Hilary Magacs Email

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- It's finally football time again in Tennessee, and you can feel the excitement in the air.

"Go Vols!" said Patricia Black, who started tailgating along Neyland Drive around noon.

"Well, we're excited about the first game of the season. We decided to come down here with all of my friends and family and we're just hanging out, going to play some corn hole, going to eat and have a good time!" said Andy Gilliam.

With so many people coming into town for the game, local hotels are excited, too:

"The hotel is sold out, so we're expecting a big crowd this weekend for the first game of the year." said Andy Duncan, with the Hilton Knoxville Downtown.

Duncan said the hotel has high occupancy Sunday night, too, with Boomsday bookings. Calhoun's on the River said the game combined with Boomsday means a huge jump in business.

"We're always busy down here on the river, but we probably expect a 30 to 40 percent increase just over these two days. It very well could possibly be our busiest week of the year," said manager Jess Bersin.

From the young to the young at heart, tailgaters outside Calhoun's and all across East Tennessee are pumped up and they're curious about new coach Butch Jones.

"We listened to him talk the whole pre-season, so we're ready to see some action," said Gilliam.

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