Bridge Day historically is a great day for business owners in Fayetteville.
Officials from the Fayetteville Convention and Visitors Bureau say they’re expecting about 100,000 people to come out for Bridge Day on Saturday. Even though the event will be on the New River Gorge Bridge, all business owners around Fayetteville are looking forward to this annual economic boom.
“Especially in lodging properties, there’s going to be in the restaurants, in the shops people that are coming in,” says Sally Kiner, Fayetteville Convention and Visitors Bureau executive director. “Also, you know other people are going to have to purchase gasoline and stop at mini marts.”
Erik Stover, a chef at Gumbo’s in Fayetteville, says the restaurant has had to bolster its staff size and food stock for all the extra customers the restaurant usually sees on Bridge Day.
“Yeah we usually get a couple more people in the kitchen and we get a lot bigger of a truck than we usually have to order because we have to,” Stover says. “We usually do I’d say twice the business of a normal day as on Bridge Day than on any normal weekend.”
It took about three years to construct the New River Gorge Bridge, and it was completed in 1977. This will be the 36th year of Bridge Day. Kiner says it is the largest one day event in the state.
Vehicle traffic on the New River Gorge Bridge will be closed from 7 a.m. until 5 p.m. on Saturday.