Local bars prepare for start of March Madness

WICHITA, Kansas — Shocker fever is building in St. Louis and also here in Wichita. The local bars are getting ready for the crowds starting tonight.

“This is probably a two week long process for us to get ready for the March Madness,” said Luis Lopez, the owner at Emerson Biggins.

For Luis Lopez and his staff, they’ve been busy cooking in preparation for Thursday’s start of the NCAA Tournament.

“A lot of people call us up and say why don’t you open up at 8:00 in the morning, so we can get there early & try to get the best table,” said Lopez.

Lopez says 40-50 customers will be lined up outside his west side bar ready to watch all the basketball action including the hometown Shockers.

“We love all of them,” said Lopez.

To get ready for the tournament, extra help is needed.

“It’s a great team effort. We increase our staff by almost 20% to make sure everybody has a good experience,” said Lopez.

Over at Fox and Hound, where the WSU alumni gather, they’ll also have the normal room open, ready for fans who can’t make the drive to St. Louis.

“The Wichita State game, yeah that’s big,” said Lopez.

Even though Lopez will cheer on all the Kansas teams, it’s WSU that’s the most special to him.

“Yes, it’s right here in my heart,” said Lopez. “I played there 2 years, baseball, they were part of my education, that’s the reason why I’m here in Wichita, because of Wichita State giving me a baseball scholarship.”

So no matter who you cheer for, there will be lots of basketball action starting Thursday.

“Every single seat in the house is a great seat, it’s just like watching the game at Wichita State at the round house, you know where ever you sit you have a perfect view,” said Lopez.

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