BUFFALO, N.Y. -- "Typically Saturdays we get busy later, but with the cancellation of the hockey tournament, obviously we got much busier much quicker," said Pearl Street Grill and Brewery General Manager Bill Casale.
Sales were up for Pearl Street Grill and Brewery after the Labatt Blue Pond Hockey Tournament was cancelled midday Saturday. The business had to scramble fast to accommodate the growing crowds.
"We called in several, about a dozen people in early as we noticed we were getting busier," said Casale.
Some players say the tournament's organizers tried to make up for the cancellation by offering deals at a local restaurant.
"Once the ice rink started to deteriorate, the tournament director came out with a bunch of flyers that he handed out that said ‘Hey, you know, free beer tube and bucket of wings’ so we all thought ‘hey lets go over to pearl street,’" said hockey player Chris Lambe.
The vouchers encouraged Lambe and his group to drop more money.
“I think our bill came to about 80 bucks or so even with the free beer and wings," said Lambe.
Meanwhile right next to the tournament site, Templeton Landing was initially encouraged by the crowds.
"The tournament had a delayed start so they started coming in here right around 11 o’ clock this morning,” said Templeton Landing General Manager Bruce Janes. “We were off to a faster start than we had been in the last 2 years actually so we were expecting a great day."
However the change in plans affected the business' bottom line, ending the day with about a third of the sales it anticipated.
“At 5 o clock in the evening we're virtually empty when we expected to have a full day,” said Janes. “I actually had to call off the whole second staff, the second shift today."
The restaurant closed about 5 hours earlier as well. However Janes remains optimistic for next year.
'It’s a tremendous positive impact on us when it's successful,” said Janes. “Unfortunately I can’t do anything about a day like today."