SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WAND) – Business around the Illinois State Fairgrounds are looking forward to large crowds.
Main Gate Bar & Grill is located directly across the street from the Illinois State Fair main entrance on Sangamon Avenue. Owners Bill Tinsley and Debbie Fry said when the state fair rolls around, business booms.
“It’s exciting,” said Tinsley. “We are looking at a triple in business.”
With concerts running late, the owners made the decision to extend their business hours. Main Gate Bar & Grill is open from 7 a.m. to 3 a.m.
“We are hoping for people who watch all of the concerts to stop by for a drink, either before or after.”
The Illinois State Fair attracts thousands to Springfield. The Springfield Visitor and Convention Bureau reported seeing 15,000 rooms rented nightly, which means millions of dollars are generated for the local economy.
Scott Dahl, the director, told WAND News the money generated is much needed after the city is recovering from the pandemic.
“Just to have events back in town and to the scale of the Illinois State Fair, I mean we are talking hundreds of thousands of people in Springfield. We haven’t seen that in 18 months,” he said.
For the next 11 days, Main Gate Bar & Grill will be open from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. The establishment will serve breakfast from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m.