BOWLING GREEN, Ohio (WTVG) -
The MAC conference announced this morning that they would be halting the majority of their fall sports and events due to COVID-19.
The news traveled across MAC towns and campuses.
In Bowling Green students of Bowling Green State University said not having a fall sporting season alters their entire college experience.
“I mean you only get four years at being at college so it’s just the excitement of going to the football games and you can’t really get that back”, said sophomore Michael Capazi.
Capazi is not alone reacting to the news as local Bowling Green business owner Joe Castelnick says it comes as a surprise.
“Very surprised. Considering a lot of other colleges are moving forward with football. A lot of high schools are going forward with it. So to see the MAC canceling the entire season is defiantly a surprise,” said Castelnick.
Castelnick is the owner of Campus Quarters a sports bar located directly across the street from BGSU’s campus and a walking distance away from its campus athletic buildings.
Campus Quarters typically houses watch parties for MAC events. Castelnick said the bar is also a prime destination for students, alumni, and locals to visit before and after a BG athletic event.
Castelnick said its biggest attendance comes during homecoming weekend, but due to the MAC fall season cancelation, he won’t see the typical sales that he’s used to.
“Homecoming, in particular, is an insanely awesome weekend for us. We will typically do more sales in that weekend than in some entire months. So to lose that especially on top of all the other home games is... it’s going to be rough,” said Castelnick.
Campus Quarters currently has adapted its business to adhere to safety precautions with the Coronavirus pandemic.
The bar has a new outdoor patio available in order to space out customers and maintain social distancing practices.
CQ also has new hours in place, with its doors opening earlier than normal to allow more time for customers to drink alcohol in order to make up for sales lost, following Ohio Governor Mike DeWine’s order to halt alcohol sales following 10 PM.
Castelnick said as a bar owner he feels like he can’t catch a break.
“It just seems like every week it’s a moving target. Every week it’s something new. Something else we have to comply with, some other thing that happens like today. It’s... honestly, it’s hard to digest,” said Castelnick.
Campus Quarter hopes students and sports fans continue to come out, regardless of the fall MAC season.
Castelnick said he does however fear that the impact of no season will hurt not just his own bar.
“You know when people come into town there going out to eat, there going to the local places to shop during the day, there buying appeal from the university. I think it’s not just going to affect bars but the entire town,” said Castelnick.
BGSU student Michael Capazi fears Bowling Green will suffer a blow not just finically without MAC sports this fall.
“Bowling Green is defiantly a nice smaller city, and I think a lot of people outside of the college itself enjoy going to the games and having fun. And with no sporting events in the fall I think it’s defiantly going to just bring down the happiness of all the people in this city,” said Capazi.
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