Restaurants, Fans Excited For March Madness

Fans missed out in 2020, as March Madness was canceled due to the pandemic. John Lauritsen reports how everyone is making up for lost time (1:49) WCCO 4 News At 5 - March 19, 2021

Video Transcript

- March Madness fans have waited two years for this day. They missed out last year when the tournament was canceled because of the pandemic. Bars and restaurants also missed out. John Lauritsen shows us how everyone is making up for lost time.

WAYNE ZACHARIAS: This is brand new this year to celebrate March Madness.

JOHN LAURITSEN: The proof that Wayne Zacharias was missing the NCAA tournament could be found on his sweatshirt and in his hands. Together he and his son-in-law Nate filled out a total of nine brackets.

WAYNE ZACHARIAS: We're here to have a great day. Be here all day.

JOHN LAURITSEN: How much have you missed this last year?

NATE MORISETTE: A ton. This is my favorite time of the sporting year.

JOHN LAURITSEN: The same could be said for places like the sunshine factory in Plymouth. Last year they missed out on St. Patrick's Day, March Madness, and the Masters, events that bring customers in. Bars and restaurants got a little boost this week when they were allowed to go from 50% capacity to 75% capacity. But they're still at the mercy of people wanting to come back to watch these games.

BRIAN HANSON: We'll have to see. I mean, we're kind of excited to see people coming back in the doors and enjoying the stuff with us. We're trying to see what the new normal might be.

JOHN LAURITSEN: Friday afternoon was promising, a bit of a rebound for both basketball and business.

MONICA LYNESS: I'm excited. My family gets really into it. So I'm excited to be here. I feel like it's pretty safe with the plastic up and everything.

JOHN LAURITSEN: For fans of the big dance, this year it almost doesn't matter if your bracket gets busted.

MONICA LYNESS: I have Kansas winning.

- I've got Gonzaga against Illinois.

BRIAN HANSON: It sounds like we have a little bit of light at the end of the tunnel. And hopefully things keep continuing to progress that way.

JOHN LAURITSEN: In Plymouth, John Lauritsen, WCCO 4 news.

- The sunshine factory was able to add a few more barstools to its bar because of the change in restrictions that happened this week. Keep in mind, the last time we had Final Four, it was in Minneapolis and Virginia was the winner.