CHARLOTTESVILLE, V.A. (WVIR) - Some businesses in Charlottesville say they're the ones who really lost on Friday, not the Hokies. Locally-owned stores say the game's scheduling turns what would be one of their best days of the year, into a below-average one.
Businesses around Charlottesville say their sales on Black Friday have plummeted since the return of the Commonwealth Clash in 2014. The stores want to make it clear - they love UVA sports, however, the timing of the game puts them in a sticky situation.
"The impact is huge because at nine o'clock people are tailgating when the game is over, it's time to close so you totally missed one of the biggest days of the year, and it's a big deal,” Mike Kidd, with Men and Boys Shop, said.
Mincer's UVA Sportswear on The Corner says its flagship store sees less business during the game, even though it's much busier before and after than normal. However, they say it's an opportunity to prepare for the aftermath.
"It's our chance to kind of recover get the store stock back up after the morning rush and get ready for the hopefully everyone's excitement after the game,” Cal Mincer, with Mincer's UVA Sportswear, said.
Businesses say one solution could be moving the start time back to later in the afternoon, or even later in the evening.
"If it’s a later evening game that’s going to bring more hopefully more folks in the town to watch the game, have them do some Black Friday shopping before the game. In general, noontime games are very tough for us whether they’re on Black Friday or not,” Carson Oldham, with Albemarle Angler, said.
Even as they celebrate a victory, many of these stores are hoping that small business Saturday can help them rebound.
There is another victory to celebrate. For now, UVA’s schedule has them playing Virginia Tech on a Saturday next year.