It’s finally here. Saturday, Gasparilla kicks off in Tampa. It may be a day partying pirates wait for, but it’s also a holiday with a huge impact on local businesses.
The Director of Operations at Four Green Fields said, this is the Irish pub’s second busiest day of the year, right behind St. Patrick’s Day. He expects sales to reflect it.
“About six times what we would do on a normal Saturday, so it will be probably at least quadruple the amount of sales that we would do, so that’s, we’re excited,” Arthur Paula said.
They’re prepared. This is their 24th Gasparilla celebration.
“Double our alcohol orders, double the staffing, bring in extra security, bring in extra restrooms for the back to make sure that we can accommodate all of the guests that are going to be in and out of the pub tomorrow,” Paula said.
It’s not just bars and restaurants near Bayshore that benefit from Gasparilla.
“It’s comparable to what you see for last-minute Christmas shoppers,” Danielle Evans, owner of Don Me Now, said.
Evans said people wait outside of her Hyde Park store, waiting to buy Gasparilla gear. About half of Evans’ store is dedicated to Gasparilla and she adds more every year.
“What I make in December, I double that in January because of Gasparilla, so yes, we are very grateful for this,” Evans said.
Don Me Now is open until 8 p.m. Friday night. Four Green Fields opens early Saturday, at 9 a.m.