Restaurants and fans have new game plans for watching SEC Football kickoff


JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – Gameday is here for the Southeastern Conference but it’s not going to be what we’re used to whether you’re watching in the stadium or from home.

COVID guidelines have those in the restaurant business concerned they’ll still be losing money. Even with the football crowd flocking to bars.

After a hectic year for many football is back in SEC Country, but how different will it look for people and local businesses trying to enjoy the game outside the stadium.

“We also need Tate Reeves to understand its time to let us open back up all the way,” Capitol Grill General Manager Lance Gammill argued.

On a normal college game day, the Capitol Grill in Jackson will be packed with Rebel and Bulldog fans, but this time management is expecting to take losses from turning people away to follow COVID restrictions.

“Numbers are down, folks are getting back out again, they spend all this effort to wreck the restaurant industry,” Gammill added. “It’s time to put effort into opening us back up again.”

Since reopening Capitol Grill, management has been able to bring back almost 20 full-time employees. But to handle the football season will take more than 30 workers.

“We’re putting chairs on top of every other table, at half capacity we can fit about 60 people in here,” Gammill told us. “That’s our aim, so try to get here as early as you can.”

As for fans, the goal is to enjoy the game with usual parties but downsized in their own homes.

“Invite a few friends, I have a device to take their temperatures at the door,” LSU fan Otis Miller said. “And we’ll be taking all the precautions but kick back and watch the game. Have a few snacks.”

Others feel eventually its worth going back in perosn this year.

“I’ll do first and foremost whatever the law says, bring a mask just to be on the safe side of everybody else is around,” Ole Miss fan Greg Mack said. “I’ve had the COVID I know how bad it is, it really does affect you but I’m not going to put life on hold. We’re going to win an SEC title and maybe even a national championship.”

Remember Ole Miss will be welcoming the Florida Gators for an 11:00 a.m. kick-off in Oxford. While Mississippi State will be on the road in Baton Rouge taking on the defending champion LSU Tigers. For a full recap, both games make sure to tune into 12 news sports zone with Hailey Hunter and Noah Newman.

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