MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) -- Twins fans aren't the only ones excited to have baseball back. Businesses around Target Field couldn't be happier. They haven't had a true home opener in three years.
"I think this should be a holiday. It's a wonderful day," said Fred Bainbridge, Twins fan.
Before fans filled Target Field, they filled bars and restaurants around the stadium.
"Things are freeing up, people are walking the streets of downtown Minneapolis. It's an exciting place to be," said Twins fan Mary Schreder.
Excitement, not just for the team, but for what it means for businesses that rely on baseball. Two years ago there was no baseball in April because of the pandemic. And last year, opening day was limited to 10,000 fans due to COVID-19.
"It's hands-down our biggest day of the year," Marcus Dorn said.
Dorn is the owner of Darby's Pub and Grill. He was worried the baseball lockout would extend into spring. But once it was resolved, anxiety turned into anticipation. Baseball is a big part of his business model, and Darby's has been taking reservations all week.
"I think the fans are excited about the team. They are excited to get back to Target Field in full force for the first time in three years," Dorn said.
Darby's estimates that Twins home openers bring in anywhere from $15,000 to $20,000.
Across the street at B.A.D. Wingz, general manager Jolene Rood had a hard time containing her delight.
"As you can see, I'm excited," said Rood with a smile on her face. "We've ramped up things and we're ready."
This will be B.A.D. Wingz' second baseball season near Target Field, but their first home opener with no limitations. Even if the Twins lose, it's a win just to have smiling customers back.
"The building fills up quite a bit from the fans. We are a block from Target Field, so we are the stop before the stadium," Rood said.
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