Downtown Tampa businesses prep for potential record-setting weekend

City estimates 40K visitors downtown all weekend
Posted at 5:39 PM, Jan 04, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-04 17:56:42-05
Tampa is gearing up for one of its biggest hosting duties to date. 
Weekend events for the College Football Playoff National Championship will attract an estimated 100,000 visitors across Tampa Bay. 
Free concerts showcasing A-list performers like Usher and Flo Rida will help boost business at downtown eateries and bars. 
Bavaro's Pizza on Franklin Street has already called a strategic audible ahead of the championship weekend. 
"We double up on veggies, we have to do like quadruple the batches for sauces," said Rene Franco, of Bavaro's. 
The local pizza restaurant is also doubling up on staff, too. 
"We're probably going to have like two pizza guys, one floating, two in the kitchen and the dishwasher," said Franco. "Even the front is going to have more people." 
The Downtown Tampa Partnership is anticipating 40,000 people in downtown at any given time this weekend. 
Tampa Pizza Company is also making some last-minute adjustments to accommodate the spike in downtown visitors. 
They are ordering more ingredients and making a change to the menu to welcome out-of-town guests. 
We normally local drafts and we're going to bring in the things that we know people are going to want to drink that aren't from this area and are looking for the things that they know and love," said manager Larissa Pepe. 
The CFP National Championship featured the same two teams last year, generating an estimated $274 million for Glendale, Arizona's economy. 
The Tampa Bay Sports Commission is anticipating an even greater economic impact for Tampa Bay in 2017 thanks to Tampa's geographic advantage to both Alabama and Clemson fan bases.