BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Opening Day arrives in Baltimore on Thursday!
And where fans see a winning Orioles season, hotels and restaurants in Baltimore see dollar signs.
Baltimore residents may see some Yankees T-shirts and hats in downtown Baltimore this week- but this is the time of year the tourism industry waits for, especially when the visiting team is along the 95 corridor.
The box office is open, the groundskeepers are washing and landscaping, and the fans are really optimistic.
“Oh, well, I think they’ll make it to the playoffs,” A fan said.
All around Baltimore the buzz of baseball is back, and so are the visiting fans.
“We say welcome to Baltimore, we want them here. We want to beat them as well, but we want them to come here and spend a lot of money,” said Al Hutchinson, with Visit Baltimore.
Opening Day means big money for Baltimore hotels and restaurants.
Whether from the city, county, or afar, all those fans are looking for a hot crab cake and a cold beer, somewhere like Pratt Street Ale House.
“It would be an understatement for me to say it’s the biggest day of our year,” said Greg Keating, with Pratt Street Ale House.
Brewers at the ale house are serving up a special Opening Day pale ale “I Wish I Was At The Yard”, and are putting the finishing touches on a newly-renovated bar for game day customers.
“I think they really want that Baltimore style service. They want that feeling that you are in a hometown feel. You know and I think that’s definitely something that we offer year in and year out,” Keating said.
Such a visitor is Tom McKee, visiting from New York as a Yankees fan, is feeling more than optimistic about Camden Yards than his team’s chances of winning there.
“It’s a very cool ballpark, I’ve never been here so I look forward to being on the other side of it and seeing what’s going on in there,” McKee said.
But no matter what team you are there to root for, on Opening Day, Baltimore businesses win.